Jeb Bush is First on the Ballot for Hawaii Republican Presidential Caucus
"Shame on this court"-- Shouting Erupts as Seabright Upholds Nai Aupuni Election
Grassroot: Plaintiffs Intend to Continue Fight Against Unconstitutional Election
Akina v Hawaii: The Documents
Taking sides against equality and unity
Rail Surcharge: Necessary and Proper?
State, Kaiser Begin Maui Hospital Negotiations
Obama Gift to Hawaii -- 297 Drug Dealers
CB: Hundreds of Hawaii inmates are among the thousands of federal drug offenders scheduled to be released starting next week under an initiative aimed at relieving prison overcrowding and mitigating the effects of what many see as draconian sentencing policies.
The first wave of the early releases, set to begin on Oct. 30, will involve about 6,000 drug offenders nationwide — the biggest one-time release of federal inmates in history.
In Hawaii, the Federal Bureau of Prisons will release 31 inmates between Oct. 30 and Nov. 2, with an additional 110 scheduled to be freed in coming months.
In all, 297 inmates in Hawaii are eligible for the early releases, according to an August estimate from the U.S. Sentencing Commission, an independent panel that sets federal sentencing policy....
“Most of these drug offenders are addicts."
read ... Thanks, Obama
HCDA Holds up Permit for New Year's Because 100 Homeless Refuse to go to Shelter
KITV: It’s a frustrating sight for Mike Galmiche who’s organizing what's called "The New Year's Eve Party of the Year” featuring several stages, a carnival, food trucks, fireworks, and even fire dancers.
He says he's been trying for four months to get a permit from the state but has no luck so far....
The HCDA, which issues the permit, says it's worried about the safety of party-goers – about 100 people are living at the park. Social workers say they're trying to help:...
At the site, some people said they've been told there's going to be another sweep within a week and they're going to have to move again. As far as where they're going to go, it might be in the shed that’s there. The state says it's about 5,000 square feet and could hold about 40 people.
read ... Refuse Shelter
Brower's Alleged Attacker Still Refusing Shelter
SA: A census at Kewalo Basin, Point Panic and Kakaako Waterfront parks conducted Wednesday by Waikiki Health and the Kalihi-Palama Health Center counted 130 people including at least seven families living there, said Scott Morishige, the state’s homeless coordinator.
State officials including the Hawaii Community Development Authority, which owns the land, have been meeting this week trying to figure out what to do about the burgeoning homeless populations that grew as a city cleanup crew Oct. 14 finished clearing out the Kakaako encampment that at one point wound around the UH medical school and Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center.
The dismantling of the encampment began Sept. 8 after police, fire and paramedic calls to the area spiked and in the aftermath of a June 29 attack on state Rep. Tom Brower (D, Waikiki-Ala Moana-Kakaako) as he photographed conditions at the intersection of Ohe and Olomehani streets.
The census conducted Wednesday at the three beach parks included Rose Pu‘u, whose 14-year-old son has been charged with instigating the attack on Brower.
Pu‘u told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on Thursday that her son is attending Farrington High School but has pending court appearances related to the attack on Brower. Pu‘u declined to say when her son’s next court date is or specify the reason for his appearance.
Alvaro Olivares, 55, had been living in the Kakaako encampment for two years and moved his tent and tarps to the Olomehani Street side of Kakaako Waterfront Park after city crews moved in with two garbage trucks.
“They told us to move on,” Olivares said. “But we didn’t have any place to go.” (Except a shelter....)
read ... Except a Shelter, that is
Homeless Male Dead, Female Injured because Liberals would not force them to accept Shelter
HNN: Police say the man was walking in the westbound lanes just before Kakoi Street around 1:30 a.m. when the driver of a VIP airport shuttle bus hit him. (If he had been forced into a shelter, this would not have happened and he would be alive today. Soft on homelessness kills.)
Paramedics said the man was pronounced dead at the scene.
Homeless people living in the area say they knew the victim, and that he often passed through the area. They told Hawaii News Now that the man appeared to have left his wagons up the road and seemed to have wandered into the road to look for something.
On Tuesday, a woman wandering disoriented in Waialae Avenue between 9th and 10th Avenues, suffered critical injuries after being hit by a suspected gray Dodge Nitro, which then fled the scene. Police said the woman was apparently homeless. (If she had been forced into a shelter, this would not have happened.)
read ... Two Dead
Ige Has Four Emergency Homeless Shelter Locations to Choose From
SA: ...Declaring an emergency to target homelessness is not unprecedented — Gov. Linda Lingle issued an emergency proclamation that led to building the Next Step shelter in Kakaako and temporary housing facilities on the Waianae Coast. When Ige’s planned temporary shelter will be built and ready to take in homeless people is still uncertain.
What is clear is that the proclamation allows the state to eliminate the usual red tape associated with government construction projects. The proclamation lists 25 chapters and sections of the Hawaii Revised Statutes that could be bypassed — everything from the procurement code to environmental impact statements.
The shelter location will be announced within the next few weeks, said Scott Morishige, Hawaii’s homeless coordinator. The state is considering four possible sites, including two locations in Kakaako as well as the Liliha Civic Center and on Nimitz Highway at Pier 38.
There is no time to dawdle in choosing the shelter site. Morishige said the state is vetting the sites for one that will benefit entire families, meaning it should be close enough to schools, transportation, employment and support services.....
read ... Shelter
Hawaii entrepreneur seeks marijuana dispensary license
HNN: ..."If they are looking at some people that have an understanding of how to take a product from the ground and bring it out to market then maybe they will consider us," he said.
Irish owns Diamond Head Seafood, Halm's Enterprise and Keoki's Lau Lau Company. In August he registered a new company with the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs called Hawaiian Isles Marijuana LLC. Irish believes his business expertise and financial stability make him an ideal candidate for a dispensary license.
"We're capable of doing everything in house at this point," Irish said.
He has been contacted by people both in Hawaii and on the mainland interested in partnering with him, but at this point that's not in his plan. He said he's more concerned with the people he could help with quality cannabis than the money he could make....
read ... Weed Dealer
Public Won’t See Medical-Marijuana Dispensary Rules Until January
CB: The Hawaii Department of Health doesn’t plan to hold a public hearing or accept public comments on rules governing the state’s new medical marijuana dispensary system before releasing draft rules by Jan. 4, 2016.
That means entrepreneurs will have only a few days to review the rules before applying between Jan. 11 and Jan. 29, for eight coveted licenses to grow and sell medical cannabis.
The recently enacted state law establishing the dispensary system exempts the department from seeking public input because legislators want to establish a medical marijuana system by July 2016.
“We’re taking full advantage of that exemption so that we can spend the time to get the necessary rules done,” Health Department official Keith Ridley told legislators during a briefing Thursday at the Hawaii State Capitol....
About 1,000 patients are waiting for the cards, Health Department official Peter Whiticar testified on Thursday. (Thus steering 1000 new patients to the new dispensaries by making them wait until the dispensaries are open)
PBN: Hawaii health department to hire for medical marijuana dispensary program
read ... Rules
Maui police chief speaks after second police officer arrested for bribery
KHON: On Thursday, Chief Tivoli Faaumu released a video statement through Akaku Maui Community Media that said the following:
“I want to reassure the public that any wrongdoing by members of the department, such as corruption, will not be tolerated. Any employee that violates the law will be held accountable, both criminally and internally. In connection with this investigation, Officer Maldonado has been placed on leave without pay and Officer Keliipaakaua has been placed on desk duty. As with any arrest, these officers are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. The investigation is ongoing and upon completion we will present our evidence in court. We will not present our case on television or in social media as the commander in chief of the Maui Police Department, I stand behind the men and women who continue to serve our community through fairness, integrity, and compassion. Mahalo.”
read ... Maui police chief speaks after second police officer arrested for bribery
‘Aloha Aina’ rallies drawing crowds, but maybe not voters
Borreca: Part of the secret of why politicians hold rallies is not to convert, it is to organize.
Giving a political speech at a rally is the very definition of preaching to the choir, but finding the singers for your choir, organizing the choir, getting the names and emails plus having them drop something in the collection box — that is how real political organizing works.
So you have to keep an eye on this year’s two big public rallies, sponsored by the loosely connected Aloha Aina Unity rallies held in Waikiki and Lahaina.
The August march and rally in Waikiki drew an estimated 10,000 marchers, with thousands more watching. The Maui event had between 5,000 and 6,000 and was held last Sunday....
Maui Democratic state Rep. Kaniela Ing attended the Maui march and spoke to the crowd. (Thus implicitly targeting Sen Roz Baker for 2016)
2014: Anti-GMO Candidates Lose Big Statewide
read ... ‘Aloha Aina’ rallies drawing crowds, but maybe not voters
Anti-GMO Activist: "Promote isle as ecological paradise"
MN: On Oct. 8 on the mayor's radio show, he extolled the virtues of our sister city Miyakojima Okinawa, as being an ECO island, a place that green harvests their sugar cane. He suggested Maui should also be an ECO island. How?
The mayor consistently does everything he can to support the corporations that are poisoning Maui. He shows his allegiance by appointing former Monsanto PR spokeswoman Carol Reimann to his Cabinet, he sides with Monsanto to sue to invalidate our vote, encourages development of agriculture lands and supports HC&S burning cane, not green harvesting.
So I am wondering, how is he going to market Maui as an ecological paradise? Residents know we are being poisoned in "paradise" and the local and state government do nothing to stop it. Visitors are realizing they are in the middle of ground zero for chemical testing of restricted-use cocktails. That we have more field tests approved in Hawaii than any other state. They see the reefs dying, the hazy sky of smoke and ash.
read ... Their Tourism Industry
Native Hawaiian Law Grows 450% Since 1991
SA: Melody Kapilialoha MacKenzie has been working in the field of Native Hawaiian law long enough that a book she helped write and edit in 1991, “The Native Hawaiian Rights Handbook,” was publicly re-released this month by Kamehameha Publishing and now is almost 4.5 times longer (320 pages then versus 1,420 now).
Director of the Ka Huli Ao Center for Excellence in Native Hawaiian Law at the University of Hawaii’s William S. Richardson School of Law, MacKenzie said the book, now titled “Native Hawaiian Law: A Treatise,” is larger because, “obviously, it’s been since 1991, so there’s a whole growth in law related to the Native Hawaiians.”
A review of the book’s 21 chapter subjects suggests how much growth. They include Native Hawaiians and U.S. law, gathering rights, religious freedom, burial rights, education, health, charitable and public land trusts, the island of Kahoolawe and more — all subjects prominent in today’s political landscape....
“For the most part our Hawaii Supreme Court comes out with some very good decisions on Native Hawaiian issues, particularly in relation to natural resources, so that certainly gives me hope.”....
Related: Enviros win 90% in Hawaii Supreme Court
read ... Law
Lawsuit challenges Hualalai geothermal survey--Usual Suspects looking for Rent Money
WHT: A lawsuit was filed Wednesday in Environmental Court seeking to require an environmental assessment for a geothermal exploration project on Hualalai.
The nine plaintiffs include six West Hawaii residents who live on or near the mountain and representatives of two groups that have opposed geothermal development in Puna — the Puna Pono Alliance and Pele Defense Fund.
Plaintiffs say they are concerned about potential impacts to Hualalai’s “sensitive cultural and natural environment.”
The University of Hawaii survey, funded by U.S. Department of Energy and state Department of Land and Natural Resources, will occur on 19 parcels on agriculture land.
Noninvasive techniques will be used to measure the electrical conductivity of rocks as deep as 20,000 feet to determine their temperature and water content. The process will allow researchers to avoid drilling exploration holes, according to the university.
The magnetotelluric survey involves two or three antennas and four specialized contact electrodes connected to a data recording system. The devices will be placed between 1,600 feet and 3,200 feet apart at the survey sites....
Thomas said the survey will remain on hold until the lawsuit is resolved.
read ... Usual Suspects Demanding Rent
UH Should Fire Lawyers Responsible for Athletic Contract
HNN: ...The golden parachute in Gib's contract was his ace in the hole which no-one at UH seemed to know about until it was too late. No surprise Gib and his lawyer let UH walk into the trap. UH fired him without cause and triggered a $1.4 million dollar severance.
But UH should have known, it was right there in black and white. They wouldn't have had to pay him anything if they had a reasonable cause, like say embroiling the team in an NCAA scandal.
In the defense of the administrators - even though they bare prime responsibility -- they relied on their lawyers. Taxpayers pay a lot so that UH can have its own in-house legal team and the freedom to hire outside lawyers if they need more expertise.
In this case, the in house lawyer who drafted that contract and who should have helped with Gib's termination, is the next person who should be fired.
This person did not just make a mistake writing the contract, but compounded it by not stepping up to prevent the fiasco....
read ... Fire the lawyer
DOE asks for $534 million for schools repairs, heat abatement
HNN: The Department of Education is asking for $533.5 million to tackle capital improvements projects in the upcoming fiscal year.
The request is $125 million more than what the DOE asked for last year, and includes $30 million for noise and heat abatement.
DOE Chief Financial Officer Amy Kunz said the request for heat abatement will "allow us to work through the prioritized list of projects, to work further down that list and get cooling into our schools."
She said the heat abatement funds won't just go to air conditioning, but to other technologies, like painting roofs to drop the temperature or "flushing" schools at night to push out hot air.
read ... Legislative Agenda
$15 Minimum wage dies in Maui Council
MN: Council Member Don Couch noted that a minimum wage is not the same as a living wage and if it was, then we would be talking about a far higher amount. A minimum wage is a starting wage for unskilled labor and it is important to understand this.
Council Member Stacy Crivello was concerned about the impact on employers, especially the mom-and-pop operations in rural areas. She also noted that increasing the minimum wage also raises payroll and other taxes that contribute to business costs.
Council Member Riki Hokama shared that while Kauai has brought this up and he values aligning with sister counties on shared issues, Lanai has no activity right now and he does not feel their family operators can afford it.
Council Member Mike White was concerned that it would put a damper on summer hires. He also pointed out that a 7 percent increase was done in the past eight years and that a 94 percent increase in the next four years is too big a jump. He also said that Maui does not have the high demand of other major cities.
Council Member Bob Carroll said the increase was too high and that he might accept an increase to $12 an hour.
Council Member Gladys Baisa discussed the impact on the standard of living, noting that the cost of this would be passed onto consumers and the standard of living would not really change. She said it may be OK to raise it further over longer periods of time, but that would require additional research. She prefers benefits over wages as wages are taxed, but most benefits are not.
Council Member Mike Victorino said the mom and pops cannot afford this increase, unlike large retailers. He said the economy is tenuous. He asked, while bigger metropolises can go higher, can the rural counties? He said even if people get a dollar more, after the prices go up, it is hard to break even. He was also concerned that Social Security would not get an increase this year given reduced fuel prices.
With no second to Cochran's proposal, the measure died.
read ... Lack of Second
Schatz: $2.3M in Campaign Coffers
CB: Brian Schatz, the Democrat from Hawaii, managed to haul in more than half a million dollars for the quarter ending Sept. 30, according to filings with the Federal Elections Commission.
He was helped significantly by two political action committees: the J Street PAC, which bills itself as pro-Israel but also pro-peace; and the League of Conservation Voters PAC. The two committees earmarked individual contributions that comprised about 10 percent of Schatz’s total take for the quarter.
Schatz also was helped by dozens of contributors who have kicked in more than $5,000 each this year, including Hawaii lobbyist John Radcliffe, Blue Planet Software head Henk Rogers, Alexander & Baldwin executive Stanley Kuriyama and A&M Records co-founder Jerry Moss.
read ... Crime Pays
NextEra Merger News: