House may not have votes for civil unions
After a private caucus among majority Democrats, Say said lawmakers will have to consider whether they want to bring the bill to the floor even if they do not have a veto-proof margin, or 34 of 51 lawmakers.
The House passed a civil-unions bill last session, 33-17, with one Democrat who supports the bill absent. Say said support for civil unions may have slipped and put the latest private count at 31 lawmakers in favor.
LINK>>>State of the State Address: Full Text
ADV: Lingle proposes business stimulation incentives
In her eighth and final State of the State address, Lingle said "The income tax credit proposal grants credits equal to the wages withheld by the employer for each new, full-time permanent position filled by a resident who is currently receiving unemployed benefits."
Lingle also called for establishing a 10 percent construction and renovation tax credit for hotels and resorts as a means to help stimulate the economy.
The credit will be granted for the first $500 million in construction that gets underway in each of the next three years and could help create more than 23,000 jobs, the governor said.
Lingle also proposed moderating increases in the unemployment insurance tax, allowing employers to pay only 60 percent of anticipated tax hikes. The plan would save businesses $497 million over the next four years.
SB: Lingle focuses on budget fixes in last State of the State speech
An amended shell bill (SB404) could speed up movement of rainy day funds, says state Rep. K. Mark Takai
State Rep. K. Mark Takai plans to rewrite a bill that would fast-track the movement of $50 million from the state's emergency rainy day fund to the general fund, which the governor can tap for public schools.
"I don't want the fact that the Legislature has not taken action to be the reason why we don't end furloughs," he said. "The intent of the proposal is really to make it crystal clear we want this thing settled now."
Takai (D, Newtown-Waimalu) plans to strip Senate Bill 404 and rewrite the legislation to move the rainy day funds.
The bill's current version has already been voted on twice, and a rewritten version would need only two more votes to send it to the governor as early as Thursday -- one by the House to amend it and one by the Senate to pass it.
Rail opponent Panos Prevedouros to run for mayor
Honolulu City Councilman Donovan Dela Cruz and City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle have also announced they will run for mayor whenever Hannemann leaves the post.
Others considering a possible bid include council Chairman Todd Apo and city Managing Director Kirk Caldwell.
Big Island lawmakers mull fall elections
AlQaeda is on tenterhooks (as are machete dealers islandwide) as North Kona Councilman Kelly “GTMO” Greenwell is still considering whether he will run for a second term, while other lawmakers are preparing their re-election bids.
Enriques, Yagong, and Hoffman will seek reelection. Others not announced yet. Enriques who is taking the $37,000 public funding has drawn one opponent Brittany Smart, who moved to Naalehu in 2007 will be given 37,000 to run against Enriques.
Abercrombie pretends to blast furloughs
Although the statement lists those areas as priorities in an Abercrombie administration, it is vague on what services he will cut or what taxes would be raised to balance the budget.
(Typical Abercrombie. All hot air. No substance.)
POLITICO: Hawaii (is the only place on earth) still crazy about Obama
Democratic candidates in the president’s native state quibble over who knows him better and likes him more. Those who were slow to get behind Obama in the presidential primary act almost with an air of desperation in their attempts to tie themselves to him — efforts that range from trying to declare his birthday a state holiday to turning up uninvited at public places during Obama’s holiday vacation, with hopes of a photo op.
Even Republicans here resort to lingual gymnastics as they try to express respect for their popular native son while offering muted criticism of his policies.
Jim Kelly named to Advertiser editorial post
Jim Kelly, editor of Pacific Business News for the past five years, is moving to The Honolulu Advertiser next month to oversee its editorial pages.
At PBN, Kelly often writes the newspaper's editorials and signed columns.
At the Advertiser, Kelly succeeds Jeanne Mariani-Belding, who left the newspaper after five years to work in the area of strategic communications.
(Ahem. For whom?)
Island landlords lowering prices, offering incentives for the first time in years
In some cases, landlords are dropping their rents by about $100 or more or are offering existing tenants lower rents to get them to stay.
Landlords are also being warned to prepare for a wait when they put a rental on the market.
Better Place raises $350 million in financing for electric car plans
The company also has been working toward starting a pilot project in Hawai'i and California.
Those who provided the current round of financing included HSBC, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, and Lazard Asset Management.
Illegal concrete fill helped rare stilts
For the unauthorized loading of hundreds of concrete slabs into a Waianae stream bed, the city faces federal fines, according to documents obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
But the slabs provided a roadway for heavy equipment to clear out alien vegetation and debris from Mailiili Stream, which then attracted a population of rare Hawaiian stilts.
Now the city has been ordered to remove the slabs while attempting to avoid disturbing the endangered birds.
City spokesman Bill Brennan said Cudiamat's department is investigating the illegal fill.
(Dep’t Investigating itself, while two conflicting environmental regs. bring everything to a standstill.)