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Saturday, December 16, 2017
December 16, 2017 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 3:51 PM :: 4494 Views

Conservative Rankings of Hawaii Legislators—2017 Session

Study: Third of Honolulu renters spend half their income on rent

AG Chin: Every time your oceanfront property erodes, the State seizes more of your land

Union Organizing Scam: Kupuna Caregivers Only Get Paid if they Sign Up with ‘Contracted Service Provider’

HI: …The Hawaiʻi Executive Office on Aging (EOA) has officially launched the state’s Kupuna Caregivers Program which was mandated through a law signed earlier this year by Gov. David Ige. The law, Act 102, was championed by the Hawaiʻi branch of a national initiative called Caring Across Generations (CAG) through a campaign called “Care For Our Kūpuna.”…

…Hawaiʻi was the second state in the nation to pass a domestic workers bill of rights, signed into law by former Governor Abercrombie in 2013. As part of her work on that initiative, Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance Ai-jen Poo (union organizer) realized that the importance of the domestic workforce would become increasingly vital….” she said in an interview….

So she returned to Hawaiʻi, and visited a few other states, to help create CAG….  (Yes.  CAG was created by a union organizer.)

Under Act 102, qualified caregivers who apply for the program may receive up to $70 per day in services (subject to the availability of funds and paid directly to contracted service providers, not the caregiver). To be eligible, caregivers must be employed at least 30 hours a week by one or more employers and provide direct care to a care recipient ….

(Clue: The CAG will become the ‘contracted service provider’ and it will automatically enroll everyone in the National Domestic Workers Alliance —just watch.)

There are about 4 million home care workers and caregivers providing elder care in the United States, and about 52 million family caregivers: people who are providing up to 20 hours a week of care for their family members….

(Imagine 56 million more union members!  Ai-jen Poo will be a political kingmaker!)

…we actually need a whole new infrastructure (financed by union dues) to  (round up voters to elect more Democrats) support people while they care for their families,” said Poo….


read … Union Organizing Drive

Why Hawaii's electric car nirvana is a tailpipe dream

PBN: …On Tuesday, all four mayors in Hawaii got together and signed a proclamation outlawing your car. Well, in spirit, if not in actual law. In a telegenic photo op aboard the Hokulea, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell, Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa, Kauai County Mayor Bernard P. Carvalho Jr. and Hawaii County Managing Director Wil Okabe, standing in for Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim, signed a pledge that all public and private vehicles will be fully electric by 2045.

Not going to happen. There are more than 1,233,523 vehicles registered in Hawaii, according to the Hawaii State Data Book. More now, because the most recent year reflected there is 2015. Of these, 1 million are privately owned passenger vehicles, the rest are fleet vehicles.

Right now, there are exactly 6,607 registered electric vehicles. To meet the mayors’ goal, we have to replace 1,226,916 gasoline cars in 28 years. That’s 43,818 per year.

Maybe, if every new car purchased, from this day forward, is electric, and no one moves to Hawaii with a gas-powered car, we’ll get there. Except, we don’t necessarily buy 44,000 new cars a year. New car registrations have been hovering around 58,000 the past three years, according to the Hawaii Automobile Dealers Association. In a weak economy, such as 2009 to 2011, we buy around 33,000 new cars. And the needle isn’t moving on our purchases of electric vehicles. According to HADA, sales of hybrid and electric vehicles actually declined 1.8 percent in 2016, even though new car sales overall were up 2.4 percent. We’re feeling flush, buying new cars, and yet we’re still buying fewer electric vehicles than in the previous year.

We’re also keeping our cars longer. The average car on the road in America is now nearly 12 years old, according to market research firm IHS Markit. Energywise, this is a good thing. It takes a lot of energy — with corresponding carbon emissions — to build a car and ship it to Hawaii in the first place. The smartest thing government could do about our existing cars is encourage us to run them into the ground. Replacing them prematurely truly wastes the energy spent on the old car’s construction.

If we did replace 44,000 cars a year, where are we putting the old ones? Are we recycling them? Where? Here in the Islands, or shipping them off somewhere? If we’re shipping them away, who pays for that? And, come to think of it, 1.2 million electric cars means an awful lot of dead, giant, electric car batteries in Hawaii at some point, what are we going to do with those? Recycle them? Where? How? The batteries in a Nissan Leaf weigh 660 pounds, those in Tesla S weigh 1,200 pounds. Let’s split the difference and say the average is 930 pounds per car. That means our future 1.2 million electric vehicles contain 1.1 billion pounds of materials like nickel, aluminum, cobalt, lithium, silicon, graphite, lithium salt and copper. What’s the environmental impact of that? How about the impact of mining all that stuff in the first place?

But these are details, and as the mayors made clear, details that have no place in the current excitement….

Background: Hawaii Mayors commit to Ban Gasoline, Diesel Vehicles by 2045

read … Climate comedy

Anti-GMO Protesters Happy as Molokai Loses Another 100 Jobs

MN: …Crivello and Rasmussen estimated the number of jobs affected by the shutdown at approximately 100…. (Thanks, Walter Ritte.)

Operations on Molokai will end at the close of the winter season, in the second quarter of next year, Yoshida said.

Molokai employees learned of the shutdown Wednesday.

“It’s a real blow to the community,” Molokai Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Rob Stephenson said Friday. “This is about people — real people with real feelings and emotions, real hopes and dreams and goals and real fears. I really want to respect that. I have friends and family members who work for this company. I feel for them. I’m very concerned for their well-being.”

He said he’d “hate to guess” the number of jobs lost, but those have been “stable jobs, good-paying jobs that allow people to live a lifestyle that they need here on Molokai.”

Some residents may face repossessed cars or foreclosed homes, Stephenson said. Some parents may find they can’t pay tuition for children attending college.

Meanwhile, Molokai businesses that rely on purchases of goods and services by Mycogen employees will see that income disappear, he said. There’s a “trickle-down effect,” he said.

Stephenson predicted that the closure of Mycogen would have a similar overall economic impact to the closure of Molokai Ranch. More than 120 people were unemployed when the ranch closed in 2008. (Thanks, Walter Ritte.) The Kaluakoi Hotel and Maunaloa Lodge shut down on Molokai in 2001, leaving about 100 people jobless. (Thanks, Walter Ritte.)

The Hikiola Cooperative helps Molokai farmers purchase farming equipment and supplies by pooling their resources and bringing their costs dow. The loss of Mycogen would weaken the cooperative, he said.

“It will have a measurable effect on the economies of scale to our ag community to every farmer,” Stephenson said.

Molokai’s nonprofit organizations also will feel the loss of philanthropic support from the company and its employees, he said.

Mycogen supports robotics and school science, technology, engineering and math programs, Stephenson said.

Also, the company has helped local farmers prepare the ground for their crops, he said.

“They’ve been small gestures of neighborly kindness,” he said. Much of that has gone “largely unnoticed.”

Stephenson said he hopes an investor or business entrepreneur will see the company’s closure as an opportunity….


read … Mycogen Seeds to shut down operations on Molokai in spring

Fuchigami: Ige Will Back Airport Corporation Bill this Session

KITV:…Hawaiian Airline's outgoing CEO says the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport isn't  "adequate to fit the community" and needs to be modernized.

The airline's newly completed hangar is the first step of that process.

The new 43,000 cargo and maintenance facility for Hawaiian Airlines has been seven years in the making.

"It's a big deal in a couple of respects. One, the maintenance facility that we were operating out of was built in the 1960s and has long since not been adequate for the work that we need to do. This really gives our mechanics the ability to work outside of the elements….

The new hangar is the first step in the modernization process of the airport.

"Building this facility was very crucial because the airport system is landlocked. We needed to tear down buildings before we could do other things as we move forward. So it's a matter of sequencing. Now that it's built, we can go ahead and expand the taxiways so the AirBus 330, which is back here, will actually be able to get down to the next phase, which is the mauka terminal modernization," Ford Fuchigami, with the governor's office said.

Gov. Ige is finally backing an airport corporation, the next step is a bill before the legislature.

"Gov. Ige's goal for us is to move this project along. Obviously the airport system is very crucial to the hospitality industry, and because of that, we'll be working very hard to go and pass that bill this session," Fuchigami said….

read … Hawaiian Airlines CEO says the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport isn't "adequate to fit the community"

Greenmail: Protesters Seeking Money Claim to Own Coco Palms Site  

KGI: …the court denied the defense’s motions to eliminate and dismiss the case based on the lack of jurisdiction….

Soong also said district court doesn’t have any jurisdiction on an action that involves Title II real estate and if there’s a question of title, that would lie with circuit court, but in reference to the action of trespassing or summary possession needs to be submitted to the court with an affidavit of title.

The court, Soong said, has focused in on a couple of documents, including one in which Hepa traces his lineage back to Deborah Kapule, the last queen of Kauai and a certificate of award for the land to Noa Mau-Espirito and his sister.

These documents, Soong said, are not enough proof of ownership.

“The court is finding, title is not in question,” Soong said.

With objections from May-Espirito Soong continued the trial to Dec. 29 at 8 a.m….

Reality: Enviros win 90% in Hawaii Supreme Court

read …. Greenmail

Council: “Favoritism and low morale” are normal for Maui County Departments

MN: …All nine council members voted against Mayor Alan Arakawa’s request to remove Taylor from his position, saying there was no history of mismanagement or wrongdoing….

On Nov. 15, the mayor removed Taylor from his office pending council approval.

During a Policy, Economic Development and Agriculture Committee meeting Monday, the mayor said Taylor lacked management abilities and had failed to complete certain projects. The two also differed on the mayor’s plans to purchase Wailuku Water Co. and East Maui Irrigation’s water diversion systems.

About half of the 200 water department employees participated in a survey in August, with some citing favoritism and low morale in the department. However, council members questioned the validity of the survey and wondered whether the mayor would conduct similar surveys for each department head….

read … Council votes to keep Taylor as director of Water Supply

Hawaii: 13.5% of Homes Over $1M

VW: …Leading the pack is Washington D.C. with 17.3% of all homes exceeding the $1 million benchmark. This puts the nation’s capital ahead of California (13.6%), Hawaii (13.5%), and New York (7.0%)….

read … The U.S. States With The Most Million Dollar Homes – ~DC 16X Average

30 homeless families on Oahu will have a place to call home next month

KITV: …Construction of affordable homes for Hawaii's homeless is nearly complete off Nimitz Highway.

30 units at Kahauiki Village are almost ready for tenants to move in.

The one and two bedroom homes feature high ceilings, a bathroom and kitchen equipped with appliances. Project organizers said all that's missing are the furnishings and hope the public can pitch in.

"What we're trying to do is give the families a start. A kitchen table or dining room table for them to have dinners around. Someplace for them to sit down. What we're trying to instill is a sense of community that this will be their home for as long as they need it," said Scott Kuioka of Kahauiki Village.

Work to build the modular homes started just six months ago and it's taken an army of volunteers. Keiki, kupuna and professional tradesman have all donated their time.  

"The guys that are actually getting their hands dirty, picking up a shovel, pounding. It's all donated pro bono time. These guys are here seven days a week, sacrificing and volunteering their time away from their families," said Robert Kurisu, AIO Foundation. …

read … 30 Families

Handouts and Freebies Attract Homeless to Hawaii—Not Warm Weather

SA: …“But unlike cities such as Las Vegas, L.A., Seattle and Portland, we’ve been able to hold the line in Honolulu,” Alexander said. “Seattle took its eye off the ball and didn’t address the underlying issue, which is affordable housing.”

For the state as a whole, the number of homeless declined in 2017 by 8.8 percent to 7,220.

“The numbers nationally actually increased for the first time in 10 years,” said Scott Morishige, the state’s homeless coordinator. “It’s important to point out that Hawaii is bucking that trend while other communities, such as Los Angeles, saw a nearly 26 percent increase, while Hawaii saw its first decrease in eight years. We’re really seeing the start of a different trend here in Hawaii compared to what the rest of the country is looking at.”

Honolulu and the rest of the islands’ counties “are not seeing the increases we’re seeing in other West Coast cities,” said Katy Miller, the Seattle-based regional coordinator for the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness….

One interesting result of the national homeless census is that it further crushes the myth that Hawaii’s problem is solely the result of warm weather.

“Everyone always says that people are attracted to our place because the weather is good,” Alexander said.

In fact, according to the federal housing department, the five states with the biggest improvements were all warm-weather states in the south: South Carolina (down 22.9 percent), Georgia (down 19.9 percent), Louisiana (down 19.4 percent), Tennessee (down 7.7 percent) and Florida (down 5.9 percent).

The 10 major cities and counties with the highest homeless numbers were led by New York with 76,501, according to the federal numbers, followed by Los Angeles city and county (55,188); Seattle/King County, Wash. (11,643); San Diego city and county (9,160); Washington, D.C. (7,473); San Jose/Santa Clara County, Calif. (7,394); San Francisco (6,858); Las Vegas/Clark County, Nev. (6,490); Boston (6,135); and Philadelphia (5,693)…..

read … Honolulu holds line on homelessness while West Coast rates climb in 2017

Auditor: SB225 Useless--Legislators Attempt to Mandate Coverage Insurers Already Provide

HSA: Because the coverage that Senate Bill No. 225, S.D. 1, seeks to mandate is currently provided — and even exceeded — by Hawai‘i’s health plan providers, it is our recommendation that mandatory health coverage insurance for medically necessary cognitive rehabilitation therapy for patients suffering from traumatic brain injury, currently, is not needed. We suggest that the Legislature defer its consideration of mandating health insurance coverage for cognitive rehabilitation therapy until such time that such coverage is no longer provided by health insurance providers doing business in Hawai‘i….

read … Study of Proposed Mandatory Health Insurance for Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapy

Caldwell Cuts Pothole Repair 52%—Will Focus on Repaving Roads Around Honolulu Hale

KHON: …According to the city, road repaving efforts have cut down on the number of potholes filled by crews each year, down from around 48,000 in the beginning of the mayor’s term to around 23,000 this year.

Some of the areas set to be paved in 2018 include Aiea Heights, Campbell Industrial Park, Kalaeloa, Manoa, Kamokila, and downtown Honolulu.

The mayor acknowledges there are roads in town in bad need of repair.

“All those roads in town are pretty bad. Bishop Street, King Street in front of the hale, Merchant and Queen, Halekauwila. We are going to be doing all of those too,” he said….

SA: City beats 5-year goal for repaving aging streets

read … Crews repave nearly 500 lane miles as efforts to improve city roads continue

Maui Journalist Cleared

CHN: …The Hawaii Supreme Court dismissed a case against Hawaiian journalist Tommy Russo, publisher of the MauiTime, who was arrested for “fail[ing] to comply” with police orders while taking photos of a crackdown on illegally lifted vehicles in 2012. The high court found that the journalist had in fact responded to officers’ orders….

read … Cleared




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