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Saturday, August 5, 2017
August 5, 2017 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:30 PM :: 3325 Views

Seafarers’ irrational opposition to Sen McCain’s Jones Act reform bill

Second Amendment Guarantee Act Would Protect Popular Rifles, Shotguns from Antigun Politicians

Trump - Kim summit in Hawaii?

Why a Tax on Soda is Unhealthy

OHA committee pledges 'aggressive position' on Mauna Kea management

HNN: The Office of Hawaiian Affairs' board of trustees is pledging to take an aggressive position aimed at holding the University of Hawaii accountable for its "long mismanagement" of Mauna Kea.

(And NOBODY knows more about ‘Long Mismanagement’ than OHA.)

OHA trustee Dan Ahuna announced the decision earlier this week, and told Hawaii News Now Friday that the issue will likely end up in the courts.

"At some point, you have to stand up to what is right and basically that is what I think we are trying to do," Ahuna said. "For the Office of Hawaiian Affairs we advocate for the protection of our cultural and natural resources. So the people come to us when they need help when they are getting arrested and they feel that no one else is listening to them. How can we turn our back?"

(Yep.  He is using the arrests on Haleakala to justify a decision they made before the protest.  Now you know why the protesters forced the police to make those arrests.)

The aggressive stance comes as the state Land Board is poised to take up a permit request for the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope.

OHA beneficiary Germaine Meyers said she supports OHA's decision to go to court, but she wants more information.

But not all trustees think OHA should enter into litigation.

(Translation: OHA’s thieves are using this issue to split Akina from the sovereignty activists who support Akina’s call for an Audit.)

"I hope that more will be done to reach an agreement between parties without litigation," said OHA trustee Kelii Akina.

"According to a recent Ward scientific poll, a majority of all people in Hawaii, and especially those on the Big Island, believe that Hawaiian culture and science can coexist on Mauna Kea. It is important to work for this peaceful coexistence."

read … Aggressive

Thompson’s voice needed on TMT

SA: …Perhaps I missed it, but where is Nainoa Thompson on the Thirty Meter Telescope and Haleakala observatories issues?

As a master navigator who perpetuates Hawaiian sciences (astronomy, oceanography, meteorology, geology, ethnobotany, ornithology and marine biology) and cultural history, from grade school to the universities, Thompson is a respected member of our communities. He could be a great voice of mediation for both sides of the heated spectrum — the scientists and “protectors” of the “sacred mountains.”

Now that Hokulea has returned from her successful world tour and embarks upon interisland voyages, please let his voice speak out for all to hear — as we are all in the same canoe. Imua!…

SA: “Why does the University of Hawaii support the Hōkūle‘a but is willing to desecrate our mountain?”

read … Thompson’s voice needed on TMT

DBEDT, Solar Scammers Seek GEMS Secrecy

IM: DBEDT has requested less oversight of their troubled HGIA GEMS program….  (Translation: Let the stealing begin!)

The Hawaiian Electric Companies “support the continued success of the GEMS Program.However, there may be unintended consequences in eliminating the Program notification/modification process, which should be taken into consideration in determining whether HGIA’s Motion should be granted.”  (Translation: Unintended consequences = Intended consequences)

The Hawaii Solar Energy Association (HSEA) noted that, “None of the high hopes and aspirations for GEMS have been realized. Reality intervened.” HSEA believes that DBEDT made a strong case for its “common sense” approach to decreasing oversight.  (Translation: Gimme the money.)

…The latest GEMS Program Quarterly Report was filed with the Public Utilities Commission on July 31. Since loans began, GEM has approved 75 loans, (IE: Almost none) of which 69 were residential, 6 were commercial, and 20% were given out to Hawai`i, Maui, Moloka`i, and Lana`i projects.

The 75 projects include 115 Solar Photovoltaic Systems and 127 Controls and Monitoring Devices, with a combined Installed Capacity of 1.7 MW

Pending is a request by HGIA to finance the installation of “1,200 solar hot water systems on Molokai.”

read … GEMS is Once Again About to Take Off

Police Commission selects consultant to help pick a chief

SA: …The Honolulu Police Commission announced at a meeting today it selected Pennsylvania-based EB Jacobs as the consulting firm that will help find the next police chief.

The contract was finalized Thursday, commission Executive Director Dan Lawrence said.

After the announcement, four commissioners present held an hour-long teleconference with Jacobs’ executives, offering them input on what they want in the next chief….

A Jacobs representative will be in Honolulu in mid-August to talk to other stakeholders about what they want in the next Honolulu chief.

From the input, Jacobs is to come up with its criteria for a preliminary test of the 36 candidates. After the commission pares its list down, the remaining candidates will be tested further at an assessment center.

A final list will then be made public, and the finalists will be interviewed by the commissioners….

Commission Chairman Max Sword said Jacobs is being paid $75,000. Additionally, a local psychologist will be paid about $24,000 to provide input, (back channel intel to local insiders) he said….

read … Rigged

Homeless relocation program has helped hundreds return to mainland

HNN: In 2014, Roger Thompson went from being homeless on a Honolulu street to a residence back in Texas. The Institute for Human Services paid for half of the cost of a one-way ticket to help him get there.

"He's employed now. He's living with his sister. We got him connected with the VA, so he's getting the services that he really needs," IHS executive director Connie Mitchell said.

Since the agency's airline relocation program began, 364 homeless people have received assistance to go back to the mainland. In the last twelve months, the program relocated 133 individuals….

So far, IHS has kept the initiative going on about $15,000 a year, most of the money from donations. But raising the money isn't guaranteed, and this year's fund is already almost depleted.

"We're hoping for another infusion pretty soon, because we have made applications to other organizations," Mitchell said.

About 50 homeless people in Hawaii are on the list to go home, but not until the funds become available. Most were referred to IHS by human service agencies on the neighbor islands…..

(Clue: This must be privately funded.  The moment public funds are used, a mainland media firestorm will erupt.)

read … Return to Sender

Kona Homeless Refuse to Accept Shelter Spaces at New ‘Camp’

SA: …Twenty-three people from the old airport were expected to sleep in a “temporary” site outdoors, on cots and under a canopy, at a nearby site called Camp Kikaha — also known as “The Friendly Place,” said Lance Niimi, Hawaii County’s assistant housing administrator.

But as of Friday “those spaces have not been filled,” said Brandee Menino, chief executive officer of HOPE Services, a nonprofit group working with the county at Camp Kikaha to help Hawaii island’s homeless, including those from the Old Kona Airport.

No one knows what happened to the homeless from Old Kona Airport who did not show up at Camp Kikaha, as expected.

And they certainly don’t know what happened to the 28 other former occupants of the Old Kona Airport encampment who had no intention of going into a shelter and were not expected at Camp Kikaha….

More Homeless News:

read … Refusing Shelter

Disability?  Yep Hawaii’s Got a Tax for That

MF: …Short-term disability insurance pays employees a percentage of their normal salary if they miss work for more than a few days because of illness or injury. Five different states require employers to provide a short-term disability plan for employees (though companies in other states may offer plans at their discretion): California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island. Short-term disability benefits from California and Rhode Island are not subject to federal income taxes, because the payments for these disability programs come from the employee's paycheck, not from the employer. However, the programs in the other three states are partially funded by employers, so the benefits are partly subject to federal taxes.

As for state-level taxes, California, New Jersey, and Rhode Island do not tax short-term disability benefits, but Hawaii and New York do….

read … Disability Tax

Activists fuel public’s disconnect from modern agriculture—and it hurts farmers

GLP: Drought, excessive rain, insect pressure, predation, plant disease, labor shortages and a dizzying array of new food safety regulations and other laws are making farming increasingly difficult. Farmers tell me they stick it out because they have a passion for agriculture; they love the lifestyle and in some cases, want to continue a family legacy.

Meanwhile, they’re increasingly frustrated and dispirited by having to deal with the demands and unrealistic expectations of a public that is growing ever more distant from the realities of agriculture. Not to mention groups like Center for Food Safety and Pesticide Action Network that are trying to use food production as a weapon for forcing political and social change.

Which is why we have food writer Mark Bittman — identified as a Center for Food Safety “friend” — making asinine proclamations like these:

Recognize racism, poverty, and inequality as underlying causes of all our food problems.

Really? And production issues — not to mention the ignorance and expectations of people like Bittman and his pals at CFS — don’t even factor into the equation? ….

read … Activists

Tulsi Gabbard panders to Anti-GMO Morons (Again)

HNN:: U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is urging the USDA to make GMO labeling on foods clear and -- and universal.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is developing final rules on GMO-labeling requirements, and it's not yet clear what the new rules will entail.

Gabbard, D-Hawaii, joined other members of Congress in calling for clear GMO labeling on foods. (Others have critiqued the proposal.)…

GLP: Infographic: How crops are genetically modified to resist plant viruses

read … Pander

Judge issues stay to stop all Sand-Mining

MN:  After decades of sand-mining, activists notice that it is going on and it is instantly shut down….

read … Judge issues stay to stop all Sand-Mining and earthmoving at Maui Lani

Zimmerman vs. Slom, Round 2

ILind: …A year after that first lawsuit was dropped, a second suit was filed seeking to force Slom to comply with a signed settlement agreement.

It turns out Zimmerman and Slom had both signed off on a settlement agreement that required him to pay back those expenses that were at issue in the original case. And the agreement contained a clause providing that if the parties could not agree on the amount, that matter would be arbitrated.

According to the second lawsuit, Zimmerman triggered the arbitration clause after Slom failed to pay her. But Slom failed to sign the arbitration agreement or pay his half of the arbitrator’s down payment, so the scheduled arbitration was eventually cancelled. Zimmerman’s second lawsuit followed on November 2, 2016, just a week before the general election in which Slom was defeated.

The arbitration hearing was finally held on May 2, 2017, with Honolulu attorney Charles Crumptom as arbitrator. As provided in their earlier settlement agreement, the arbitration was to be “final and binding.”

The final arbitration award is part of the court record. Here’s the bottom line….  “Ms. Zimmerman is entitled to a total award of $168,460.59,” the arbitrator ruled.

read … Zimmerman vs. Slom, Round 2

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