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Friday, January 22, 2010
January 22, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 11:28 AM :: 9551 Views

LINK>>>Hawaii Family Forum calls for action: Senate to hear HB444 Gay Civil Unions Friday

Hooser ‘cautiously optimistic’ Senate has the votes to pass HB444

Civil union supporters rally for bill to provide equal (sic) rights-- They have already weather decades of intolerance (sic), so what’s a little wind and rain?

(See, if you’re against gay marriage, you are a bigot.  Even though everyone on Earth was a bigot prior to the enlightenment handed down in 1993 by Hawaii Supreme Court justice Steven “broken Trust’ Levinson)

Maui News:  More propaganda about two guys who can’t marry each other.  Somehow this is a “civil rights” issue--yet they have precisely the same right to marry a member of the opposite sex as everybody else.

ADV:  Unclear whether Senate Democrats have the veto-proof majority House leaders want

RELATED: Rallies on Oahu, Maui, Kauai: 15,000 against Gay Civil Unions

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Campaign law change could color race for Congress

Barbara Wong, state Campaign Spending Commission executive director, said Hawaii law already allows corporations and unions to make independent expenditures in local races.

"As long as they don't coordinate with the candidate, they can spend as much as they want," Wong said.

Love said Hawaii's campaign laws "were already bad. I'm hoping this will bring some attention to it and spark reform either through public funding or increased public disclosure."

Local lobbyist John Radcliffe agreed with the court ruling, saying "it was a free-speech issue." "It will change things because now corporations can give money from their corporate treasuries." (Instead of hiding behind PACs.)

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State Sen. Espero considering run for Abercrombie's Congressional seat

State Sen. Will Espero of Ewa Beach said in a statement Thursday that an exploratory committee will look into the race for the 1st District, which represents urban Oahu.

(General Election? Special Election? Or both. Three-way Democrat split?)

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SB: Independents gaining clout

Brown, whose ideas have sometimes landed right of his Republican Party, shrewdly portrayed himself as independent-minded, fighting against the Democratic machine.

"I thought it was going to be me against the machine. I was wrong. It's all of us against the machine," he told supporters in Boston.

That sentiment signals problems for candidates trying to hitch their stars to Democratic stalwarts.

When U.S. Sen. Dan Inouye publicly endorsed state Sen. Colleen Hanabusa for the 1st Congressional District and blasted fellow Democrat Ed Case, it played like an anointment. In more nostalgic times, Inouye's blessing would have been a rocket boost to office. In today's climate, it could backfire.

"Constituents in Hawaii have been misrepresented by Democrats for too long. There is no doubt that Colleen Hanabusa and Ed Case woke up in fear (Wednesday) as they realize that, on election day, they will pay the price for supporting the Obama-Pelosi big-government, tax-and-spend agenda," said Joanna Burgos, National Republican Congressional Committee spokeswoman, in touting "fiscally responsible Charles Djou."

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Hold that Train (tax raid vs Mufi)

Marumoto’s House Bill 1880, would enable the State to retain the 0.5% General Excise Tax county surcharge enacted by the legislature in 2005 to fund construction of the Oahu fixed rail system. It was the largest tax hike in state history, and for 3 years, as much as $200 million in revenues annually have been directed to the City administration for the rail, despite the rail not even having final federal, state and environmental approval.

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Law enforcement backs stiffer penalties for violence

The coalition also supported a bill that would expand the definition of second-degree murder to include an act committed with the probability of causing deadly or serious bodily injury to another person which results in death.

Honolulu Prosecutor Peter Carlisle said under state law, a killer who says there was no intent to cause a death could be convicted of manslaughter even if the physical evidence points to murder.

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Honolulu home to nation’s second-worst traffic jam

#2, Lunalilo Freeway (H-1), Honolulu

Weekly hours of bottleneck congestion: 347

Worst bottleneck: Eastbound, S Vineyard Blvd/Ward Ave

Length of worst bottleneck: .82 mi

Weekly hours of congestion on worst bottleneck: 36

Speed of worst bottleneck when congested: 16.4 mph

The expert opinion: “There are only three lanes in either direction on Lunalilo Freeway through town, making it slow wherever there is a merge,” says KSSK traffic reporter Jason Yotsuda in an email. “Not much can be done there.”

RELATED: Gov Lingle releases $1M to widen Middle St Merge on H-1

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Health care is threatened by Arbitrator’s ruling on UPW furloughs

UPW workers affected by the furloughs include 331 Hilo Medical Center employees, 26 Ka'u Hospital employees and 55 Hale Hoola Hamakua employees.

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UH System asks Lawmakers for Help

$18-million: health/safety related projects.  $235-million: repair/maintenance funding  A total of $253-million dollars, and $2.1 million for Mauna Kea to ensure Hawaii's bid for the Thirty Meter telescope….

"It's the duty of every Department to come in and justify their budget," said Rep. Isaac Choy, House Finance Committee member.

But, with the state chasing a $1.2-billion deficit...

"If no more money, no more money," says Rep. Choy.

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UHPA members begin contract ratification vote

University of Hawaii professors Thursday began a five-day ratification vote period on a new contract offer that includes a temporary 6.7 percent pay reduction until July 2011.

The vote will be taken online and ends Jan. 26.

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Total Ka Loko civil settlement amount is set at $25.4 million

Terms of the settlement at that time were sealed, but the state filed a motion to unseal its share of the settlement, $1.5 million, and the county this year filed a motion to unseal its share of the settlement.

Watanabe on Tuesday ordered the county’s portion of the settlement amount to be released. County Attorney Al Castillo said Wednesday that he is waiting for the specific court order and an opinion from the state Office of Information Practices for guidance on which portions of the county settlement he will be authorized to release….

 

Bridget Holthus, special assistant to state Attorney General Mark Bennett, confirmed the total settlement amount Wednesday, saying the $25.4 million figure came from attorneys for the plaintiffs.

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Couch fined for exceeding out of state donation limits

WAILUKU - The state Campaign Spending Commission has fined Don Couch $375 for exceeding the cap on nonresident campaign contributions in his 2008 County Council campaign….Couch said two donors he had believed to be Maui residents were found by the commission to be Mainland residents.

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New-car sales plunge in Hawaii

Hawai'i new-car sales fell to their second-lowest level in 40 years in 2009, but dealers hope that the market slide may have reached bottom.

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