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Tuesday, December 19, 2017
December 19, 2017 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 3:30 PM :: 3071 Views

Ige Announces Supplemental Budget

Homeless Court clears hundreds of cases--16 Accept Housing

Survey: 62% of Hawaii Youth Not Qualified for Military Service

State EIS Rules Undergoing Major Revisions

IM:  Some 600 changes are being proposed for the Hawai`i rules governing implementation of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process. Public comments may be filed by January 12, 2018.

…One major proposed change deals with highly controversial projects with major impacts, such as the 30-year attempt by HECO to build the Kamoku-Pukele 138-kV Transmission Line (1973-2002), the Honolulu Rail project, and Pierre Omidyar`s proposal to build the Hawaii Dairy Farms.

Community concerns in the form of numerous comments and questions are labelled by project advocates as “comment bombing”. They would like to lump all of the nuanced comments into one pile and write one general response. Under federal law they can, but not under state law. Having failed to get the Legislature to change the rules, the developers sought in 2009, and are now seeking again, to make the changes in administrative rules…..

Hawai`i Administrative Rules 11-200 contains regulations for implementing the State EIS law (HRS Chapter 343)….

read … State EIS Rules Undergoing Major Revisions

Another One: 2.5% HECO Rate Hike to Pay for ‘Renewable’ Energy

KHON: The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has issued an interim decision approving Hawaiian Electric Company’s first base-rate increase in more than six years.

The approved interim rate will increase the typical Oahu monthly residential bill for 500 kilowatt hours by about $2.82.

The approximate 2.5 percent increase will help pay for initiatives that increase reliability and resilience, improve customer service, and help integrate more renewable energy.

(Only the rate hike is ‘renewed’.)

The effective date of the new rate will be determined by the commission. An interim decision is one step in the rate-making process. The PUC will continue to review the request and will later issue a final decision on the rates…. 

HECO: Increase will help integrate more renewable energy

PBN: Hawaii residents paid 25.80 cents per kilowatt hour in September, while the national average was 10.93 cents per kWh.

PDF: View the PUC’s full interim decision and order here.

read … State approves Hawaiian Electric interim rate increase

Kauai: Vehicle tax decreases proposed

KGI: …“We have just increased our GET for transportation and road construction,” Kawakami said. “This decrease is aimed to provide some relief to our local residents who rely on their vehicles to get to and from work.”

The current vehicle weight tax is 2 cents per pound. The proposed change would drop the tax to 1 cent per pound beginning in January 2019.

The county fuel tax is 17 cents a gallon. The proposal would reduce the tax to 13 cents while the GET hike is in effect, then back to 17 cents when the tax increase expires….

KGI: County must re-evaluate priorities

read … Tax Cuts

Why Vocational Education Is Back In Vogue in Some Hawaii Schools

CB: …With only about half of Hawaii’s high school graduates going to college, schools are placing more emphasis on career and technical training…..

read … Vocational

‘Monster homes’ fill need for housing

SA: “Monster homes” will be the answer to Honolulu’s cries for affordable housing as long as there is a need.

Single-family dwellings house working families that are most often extended families with multiple individuals having differing needs. No wonder homes require many rooms and bathrooms.

With today’s healthy longevity, families include the elderly, adults and children of several generations and varying relationships. And even if the relationships were not directly familial, we are talking about affordable housing for as many people as possible in our city, with too many homeless for financial reasons.

read … Not a Monster

Good News: More homeless sweeps along H-1, Nimitz Hwy. coming in 2018

KITV: It's hard not to miss tent cities lining Nimitz Highway and H1 freeway corridors.

The state says come 2018, it's committed to conducting more sweeps.

Right now, sweeps occur about three times a week. Officials want to increase that number to five. …

"Instead of just sending somebody through court and having them have more charges be on their criminal record, we want to create an opportunity to divert people from the criminal justice system and then come to shelter, case management, treatment resources- things that can help them get out of the situation of homelessness," Scott Morishige, State Housing Coordinator said.

Since July, state agencies have encountered more than 500 homeless on O'ahu.

50 in Aiea and along Pearl Harbor Bike Path and 20 that were living along the H1 freeway. 

The majority were found in Urban Honolulu. The area under the Nimitz Viaduct is completely cleared out these days.

But that wasn't the case just a few months ago when close to 200 people called the hideaway home. 

According to the state, at least 98 homeless from the area were placed into shelter or housing….

State representative Cedric Gates says ongoing sweeps in Honolulu usually result in more homeless moving to his district in Leeward O'ahu.   (And so he wants to certify a massive festering homeless tent city there.)

HNN: An outreach court for the homeless takes its first road trip

read … More homeless sweeps along H-1, Nimitz Hwy. coming in 2018

Bad News: Politicians Push Nine Massive Festering Homeless Tent Cities for Oahu

SA: …A safe zone was established by Hawaii County this fall: Camp Kikaha in Kailua-Kona. And a legislative working group has identified nine Oahu parcels that should be considered for additional sanctioned locations.

The notion of tent cities is controversial and one not supported by federal funding agencies that supplement local financing of homelessness initiatives. Social service experts and the federal authorities that direct funding believe that these stopgap camps end up permanently warehousing the homeless and do not solve the problem at its root…..

CB: Idiot Legislators Want to Build Filthy Disgusting Homeless Tent Cities Everywhere

Reality: Homeless tent cities: Seattle’s decade-long nightmare coming to Honolulu?

read … Established Hells

Humane Society Will Help Homeless Run Puppy Mills

SA: The Hawaiian Humane Society wants to find out how many pets are living among Oahu’s nearly 5,000 homeless people — and how their (alleged) love of animals might be preventing them from getting housed….

Pets, especially dogs, often generate complaints about homeless encampments when they bite or run at people, increasing calls to shut down and sweep the encampments.

Jen Stasch, director of Partners in Care, which is organizing the Oahu Point in Time Count, said a decision has yet to be made on whether to include any of the Humane Society’s questions when volunteers fan out across the island to count homeless people next month.

If the questions are included, the answers could lead to a campaign to get more homeless shelters to allow pets while encouraging private landlords to take a chance on renting their units to homeless people with animals….  (But then what would the tweekers come up with as their next excuse?)….

In some encampments, like the 120-person one under the H-1 freeway viaduct and the one in Kakaako that had more than 300 homeless people in 2015, some individuals owned dozens of dogs.

“One person under the viaduct had up to 60 dogs,” Morishige said. “In those cases it would be very, very difficult to find any type of housing accommodation for that many animals.”

Allison Gammel, spokeswoman for the Hawaiian Humane Society, said some homeless pet owners living below the viaduct acknowledged running puppy mill operations to sell their puppies to retailers.

“They were literally bringing handfuls of puppies out to us,” Gammel said. “They admitted they were selling them.”

Puppies are particularly susceptible to canine parvovirus, “which can run rampant through an encampment” and can be fatal, she said.

Like social service outreach workers, Hawaiian Humane Society staff and volunteers often visit homeless encampments weeks before an upcoming law enforcement sweep.

Two years ago they were typically met with a chilly, suspicious reception built on fear that the Humane Society wanted to seize their animals, said Harold Han, field services manager for the Hawaiian Humane Society.

“The hardest part is building trust, which takes a long time,” Han said.

Over the last two years, the Humane Society has provided free pet food, flea medication, leashes, collars, vaccinations, microchips, sterilization and medical exams to homeless encampments across the island — all funded through donations.

“We want to help them be successful pet owners in their situation,” Han said….

During the Dec. 4 sweep of the Mapunapuna bike path that runs parallel to the H-1 freeway viaduct, Danny was discovered tied up and abandoned.

Even though his ribs were visible, Danny had outgrown his harness, which had dug into his skin.

A week later he had bulked up 10 pounds at the Humane Society but was still thin and weighed only 38 pounds. And he was still skittish and unsure…. 

HHC: How many vicious or abused dogs in Honolulu homeless camps? And will the next ‘Point in Time’ count mean anything?

Reality: Newsflash: Tweekers Don’t Take Good Care of Animals

read … Just Another Tweeker With an Excuse

Hefty fine looms over fire department as labor board reviews union dispute

KHON: …The Hawaii Labor Relations Board is suggesting a fine of up to $20,000 for violating state laws on union meetings.

So what sparked the complaint and proposed fine?

The board heard two grievances from the union. One was related to allegedly kicking members off property. That ruling came back in favor of the fire department.

But the second grievance could result in a big fine once the final ruling comes down, which is still pending.

Bobby Lee, president of the Hawaii Fire Fighters Association, says the labor complaint came after the fire chief restricted union meetings at the fire stations until after 5 p.m.

“This issue is very surprising because all unions, public and private, have the right to go onto the job site, the work sites, and talk to their members,” Lee said.

In a memo the administration sent to the union last year, the chief says the rule was to stop union officials from interfering with daily operations and maintenance, and suggested meetings be held off property instead….

PDF: Click here to view the board’s order in its entirety.

read … Fine

Ing: Start State-Owned Internet Service to Create More HGEA Positions

WHT: …One Hawaii legislator (who will soon be out of office and unemployed) has come up with a novel concept to sidestep the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to repeal net neutrality protections — that Hawaii create a broadband network of its own and go into business for itself.

Maui Rep. Kaniela Ing (who is not running for reelection and is instead primed to lose the Dem Primary for CD1) said his plan to create a community- or publicly owned, high-speed broadband will circumnavigate internet service providers (ISPs), the so-called corporate gatekeepers of the internet, to which the FCC just granted power to distribute access to internet content….

(Then your internet service will be delivered with the same smiling efficiency as all other State services.)

Reality: Local ISPs: Net Neutrality is a Fake Issue

read … What an Airhead!

Proof that Hawaii Democrats Really Don’t Believe in Sea Level Rise

CB: …By the end of the century, it is predicted that the water levels during high tide will rise from 3 to 6 feet. These increased levels will push existing groundwater out of storm drains, returning Waikiki and Kakaako to their original states as wetlands, which will “threaten $5 billion of taxable real estate; flood nearly 30 miles of roadway; and impact pedestrians, commercial and recreation activities, tourism, transportation and infrastructure,” said Shellie Habel, a doctoral student at the University of Hawaii and lead author of a study that models the effects of groundwater inundation in Honolulu.

These predictions caught me off guard. Basically, Honolulu’s economy will fail if nothing changes.

To make matters even worse, the government and industries are investing heavily in these vulnerable areas, especially in the new housing developments like Ward Village and SALT and the new International Marketplace complex in Waikiki. By mid-century when the water levels are to increase by 2 feet, Ala Moana Boulevard and some nearby streets will experience flooding effects during high tide. The community and outdoor atmosphere that these housing developments tout will be deemed unusable.

An increase of 3 feet of sea level rise will flood most of the Kakaako Makai region, making it impossible to travel along Ala Moana Boulevard and nearby cross streets during high tide. Without access to Ala Moana Boulevard, it will be difficult if not impossible to access the Kakaako, Ala Moana and Waikiki areas…..

PO: More Snow is Taken as Proof of Global Warming

read … Entire State Based on Global Warming Denial

Workers Comp: Can Shysters and Chiroquackters Start Making Real Money Again? 

CB: …Change starts with the Hawaii Legislature, but it chose not to consider a bill in the 2017 session that called for the following:

Provides that an independent medical examination and permanent impairment rating examination shall be conducted by a qualified chiropractor or physician selected by the mutual agreement of the parties. Provides a process for appointment in the event that there is no mutual agreement.

State Sen. Karl Rhoads, a co-author of Senate Bill 1116, told Civil Beat that the insurance industry — which has opposed workers’ comp reform — “must be really afraid of what a truly independent medical examiner is going to find.”….

read … I hear an ambulance—Run!



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