HSTA Insurgents: We Won the Election, Will Sue Tuesday
A Tale of Two Fleets: Canada Reforms its Version of Jones Act
2015 Legislative Recap: Victories for Social and Economic Justice
Cheese: The GMO food die-hard GMO opponents love (and oppose a label for)
Unfunded Liabilities – Smoke and Mirrors?
Dust is a Worldwide Pollutant
Hawaii: Honest Politician Became Bored and Frustrated
SA: ...The difference between Nelson Doi and most current political leaders is that when Doi talked about taking care of his people, he meant the people in his Hawaii island community — not his campaign donors....
After riding the Democratic wave to the state Senate in 1954, Doi fearlessly took on his party's leaders....
He led the opposition in the Senate to the fast-growth policies of Gov. John A. Burns, waging epic battles with Burns' legislative ally, Sen. Nadao Yoshinaga.
Like his friend Tom Gill, Doi felt Democrats had lost their idealism from 1954 and become too cozy with development and labor interests....
Doi didn't care much for Gov. George Ariyoshi, and when I once asked why, he said, "George thinks his (doo-doos) no stink."...
Ariyoshi defeated Gill, but Doi beat Ariyoshi's preferred running mate, Daniel Akaka. Much was made of Hawaii's first all-AJA ticket, but it was more a political odd couple.
Doi tried to champion interests such as education and prison reform, but he had little role in the administration and became bored and frustrated.
read ... Bored and Frustrated
Borreca: ...what has been heard of Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui? The 43-year-old Maui Democrat certainly has the chops for a leadership role in Gov. David Ige's administration, but, if forthright activism marked Cayetano's lieutenant governorship, invisibility has been the hallmark of Tsutsui's service....
Tsutsui explained that he has been meeting with Mike McCartney, Ige's chief of staff, "in order to create new roles for me."
"It is up to them whether I can be more meaningful or not," Tsutsui said.
A lieutenant governor must have the support of the governor, Cayetano advises, but adds that "it remains for the LG to develop his or her own programs."
Tsutsui still has one job left over from his time with the Abercrombie administration. He is supposed to serve as both an ambassador for promoting sports in Hawaii and as the tip of the spear to prod on either the reconstruction or revamping of Aloha Stadium.
The pair have an oddly bureaucratic relationship. Instead of calling a news conference and offering a handshake, Ige told Tsutsui to draft a "memorandum of understanding" about what Tsutsui's role would be.
The lieutenant governor complied, but noted that Ige has yet to sign off on the memorandum even though it has been on his desk for more than a month.
read ... Honestly Bored
Senators Remember their Roots--Bill helps Small-Time Crooks
SA: Thieves could steal property up to $750 and still be charged with a misdemeanor....
read ... Looking out for the little guy
Tax Cuts for the Poor Defeated
SA: ...nearly all the proposals to put a few hundred extra dollars in the pockets of working families were defeated this year. Even a bill to increase the paltry tax credit for renters — a benefit that hasn't changed in over 30 years — couldn't secure sufficient support....
read ... Tax Cut
Pakistan Questions Hawaii's Status as US State
FH: Pakistan asked the United States to: “Respond to the suggestion made by the Special Procedures in paragraph 69(n) of report A/68/284 regarding the cases of Alaska, Hawai`i and the Dakotas.“ This was in reference to the 2013 report to the UN General Assembly by Dr. Alfred deZayas the UN Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, where he recommended the Decolonization Committee be receptive to communications from indigenous and non-represented peoples. ...
The US UPR representative responded by ignoring the international context of Pakistan’s query—the fact that under international law, Alaskan native peoples and Hawaiian Kingdom subjects comprise the body politic of sovereign nations under occupation. The US response cited policies by their government to apply domestic “American Indian” policies to those the US government unilaterally identifies as “Native Hawaiian” or “Alaskan Native.”...
read ... Pakistan
After Initial Rush, Gay Marriages Drop Sharply: Only 170 on Big Island
HTH: As of March 2, 444 same-sex couples wed on the Big Island after the state’s marriage equality law went into effect on Dec. 2, 2013. Those couples accounted for 13.7 percent of all marriage licenses issued on Hawaii Island, according to data provided by the state Department of Health.
Meanwhile, more than 60 percent of the same-sex weddings on the Big Island involved couples in which one or both members were nonresidents. (Translation: 444 x .39 = Fewer than 170 gay marriages of Big Island residents.)
Sumner Lacroix of UHERO admits: “The U.S. Census in 2010 shows 3,262 gay/lesbian couples in Hawaii. My earlier reports predicted 1,957 would marry by December 2016."
“It’s definitely more from out of state,” Judith Leong said. “I think maybe I’ve done two (gay weddings) for residents who reside here. The rest have been from all over the country...."
read ... Gay marriage boosts economy, not
Sand Island Homeless Tent City Decision Coming Soon
SA: ...Ige requested at the opening of the session that $100 million be deposited in the state's Rental Housing Trust Fund — an appropriate response to a crisis situation. But the amount was whacked to $40 million, and that's not the jumpstart the state needs.
City officials plan to announce in about a month a strategy that will involve the state-owned Sand Island property that's been eyed as a transitional accommodation for the homeless, and there's no time to lose in sewing up those loose ends....
SA: Despite crisis on affordable units, lawmakers fall far short on funding
read ... Give priority to shelters for homeless
Crony Capitalism: Biofool Scammers Call for Veto of Ethanol Mandate Repeal
SA: At the grand opening of the Big Island biodiesel facility nearly three years ago, the late U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye said, "Let's not blink this time," referring to previous efforts to reduce reliance on imported oil. Unfortunately, the state Legislature has blinked, passing a bill which, if it becomes law, would repeal Hawaii's law requiring increased use of biofuels. Gov. David Ige should veto this legislation, Senate Bill 717. (Ethanol mandate)
Signing that bill into law will send the wrong signal to companies that have already invested been given tax dollars after making campaign contributions in research to (pretend to) produce biofuels and other renewable energy resources in the state.
Cellana LLC, a leading developer of algae-based bioproducts, (Yes. they did say algae.) has invested more than $100 million in developing its products in Hawaii and signed one of the world's largest algae-based biofuel agreements with Neste Oil in 2013. Pacific Biodiesel invested more than $12 million to build the Big Island biodiesel facility (and CBS exposed them) ....
read ... Ethanol Means $$$ for Us
'Accountable Care Organization' for Hilo?
HTH: An ACO is a different way of providing health care which is gaining momentum on the mainland. It compensates providers for the health outcomes of a defined population, rather than paying fees for each service that is rendered to treat disease. The goal is to give providers the flexibility to care for patients in the best and most cost-effective way, but to hold the system accountable for the outcomes it achieves....
representatives from EHI, HMC, HMSA, the county, and the employers were at the table talking to each other during Miller’s visits....
We decided to form a Regional Health Improvement Collaborative, which will provide a neutral forum for all the stakeholders to work together to address issues and opportunities in “win-win-win” ways.
There are more than 30 RHICs across the United States formed by communities taking on the crisis of health care.
We decided that Community First will be the home for the East Hawaii RHIC, and a steering committee will be formed with representatives from EHI, HMC, HMSA, employers and the community. I will serve as the chair of this collaborative....
read ... Dump the Sickest and Profit
Instead of Protesting, How About Paying Attention?
HFD: ...former “anti-GMO crackpot” as he calls himself, Bronson Kaahui, published a great article about the biotech issue in Hawaii. He calls it out for what it is and it’s hitting a nerve with the antis again....
People get swept up into the emotional highs of these “movements,” then don’t even bother to think logically about the world around them. The Hawaiian culture is one that can aspire to the highest height if more of them stop following bad leadership and catchy slogans being pushed on them by people like the Babes Against Biotech and the Center for Food Safety. These people lead with no aloha and their followers reflect it. They yell to others to wake up. Yes, wake up and think before you blast yourself on the internet....
read ... Instead of Protesting, How About Paying Attention?
Aliamanu Middle School Ranks 5th for Diversity
AD: “There are few areas in the United States that have the mix of groups and the presence of groups in significant sizes like we do,” Farrell said.
Anchorage’s diversity, he explained, is the result of several factors. The city of about 300,000 has a large military population, and its overall immigrant population of 27,000 ranks the city 119th nationally. There are particularly large Asian/Pacific Islander and Native populations. Farrell said the city ranks 30th among 366 metropolitan areas in the diversity index and is fifth among medium-sized U.S. cities.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Anchorage is about 67 percent white, 8 percent Asian or Pacific Islander, 7 percent Native, 6.8 percent multiracial, 6.7 percent Latino and 4.2 percent black.
When Farrell crunched the numbers for public schools in Anchorage, he found the numbers are even more striking. Among public high schools, East, Bartlett and West are the three most diverse in the nation. Even the city’s less diverse schools score in the top 1 percent nationally.
“Even the schools that aren’t at the top of the list, if they weren’t being compared to these top three they’d have kind of a remarkable level of diversity,” he said.
At the middle school level, Clark ranked first nationally, followed by Begich, Wendler, Romig and Hawaii’s Aliamanu Middle School. Central and Hanshew were sixth and seventh.
Perhaps the most impressive display of diversity is at the elementary school level. Farrell said the nation’s 19 most diverse schools are in Anchorage, led by Wonder Park’s 98.5 diversity score. That means the school’s 345 students are an almost unheard of mix of all ethnic groups.
read ... Diversity