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Tuesday, February 13, 2018
February 13, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:17 PM :: 6957 Views

SB2323: Senators Caught Lying About Peter Boy Case

Coco Palms: Registered Sex Offender threatens to 'arrest' Judge Soong

Pacific Territories: Trump Admin Proposes Office of Insular Affairs Budget

Report: Delays at OIP Are Staggering

Felon Should Learn to Follow Before Trying to Lead

Mandatory Funding? DHHL Statement on Supreme Court Nelson Ruling

Sea Level: Land area of low-lying Tuvalu has increased

Seven Republican Bills on the Move in the Legislature

VIDEO: Brian Evans on why he’s running for Congress

Title IX Lawsuit? DoE discriminates against female athletes

Telescope Protesters: No Deal Unless We Control 10,000 Acres around Telescopes

HNN: "Membership in the MKMA excludes the vast majority of kanaka maoli, cultural practitioners and groups, and does not require any of the nine voting members to have any expertise in kanaka maoli traditional practices,” said Healani Sonoda-Pale, chair of Ka Lahui Hawaii’s political action committee…. 

(Translation: “No Deal Unless We Control 10,000 Acres around Telescopes”)

Coverage:

read … Money and Power

Family: 4 officers at center of FBI probe also Dunked Victim in Toilet

HNN: …Mary and Melody Ingall flew to Oahu from the Big Island on Sunday after learning their brother, Sam, is at the center of a federal police brutality probe. During a visit to OCCC, Ingall told them what he says happened during the run-in with four Honolulu police officers last month. 

They said the 37-year-old recalled being forced to sit in urine before officers shoved his head in a toilet and held him under the water.

"We know our brother. We know when he lies. We know when he's being dishonest," Mary Ingall said….

Sam Ingall is well known to police; he's bounced in and out of jail most of his adult life.

He told his sisters he didn't recognize any of the officers that day and wasn't sure why they surrounded him.

"He says he wasn't resisting arrest," Mary Ingall said. "They hit him with a stick on his left arm. He has a big bruise. Made him lick the urinal. They also made him sit in pee."

Sam Ingall told his sisters that once a female officer left the restroom and the door was closed, the officers picked up and forced his head in a toilet.

"He just said that they put him in the water and that he couldn't breathe and that he was choking when they brought him up," Mary Ingall said.

Melody Ingall says her brother never reported what happened to police and was taken aback when he found out another officer spoke up about the alleged abuse. Now, the family wants the FBI get to the bottom of what happened.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for one of the officers, Megan Kau, called the incident "a misunderstanding."

She said the chief "jumped the gun" by contacting the FBI to investigate what she calls "unsubstantiated allegations."…

read … Underwater

HPD Chief: Police body cameras will start rolling out this summer

HNN: …Honolulu is among a growing list of cities rolling out body cams to hold officers — and citizens — more accountable.

Supporters of police body cams say the footage will speed up investigations into police conduct. Ballard says that once cameras are rolled out, they will be used in everyday procedures.

The planned body cam rollout comes as the Honolulu Police Department seeks to bolster its public image — something that's been made more difficult following news of an alleged police misconduct case last month.

In that case, four officers allegedly forced a homeless man to lick a urinal in a public bathroom near Keeaumoku and Sheridan streets. HPD and the FBI are investigating the officers, who have been reassigned to desk duty.

"For this particular alleged civil rights violation, after we took a look at it, and after what has happened in the past, we've decided that it was best to ask the FBI to look into it to make sure there were no allegations of preferential treatment," Ballard told Hawaii News Now.

According to Ballard, it isn't standard for FBI to be involved in such cases….

KHON: Chief Ballard provides progress report on restoring HPD’s reputation, public trust

read … Body Cameras

Star-Adv: HPD chief shows grit in facing down old guard

SA: It’s too soon to assess the Honolulu Police Department’s new head, Chief Susan Ballard, but it seems plain already that she is not pulling any punches with the force’s old guard.

In that category we’re placing Tenari Maafala, president of the police union, who has complained that he and others were transferred unfairly into undesired positions. The grievance will be heard March 16.

Those who have been demanding change from an entrenched HPD have got to feel encouraged by this. Assuming Ballard weathers this storm, it will be fascinating to watch for her next steps….

read … HPD chief shows grit in facing down old guard

Bill to block ‘monster homes’ goes too far

SA;  …Bill 110 CD2, currently being considered by the Honolulu City Council and up for a vote at 2 p.m. today. proposes a moratorium on “monster homes,” or large structures that are being used illegally as long- and short-term apartment rentals in residential areas. BIA (Building Industry Association)-Hawaii is absolutely opposed to these structures and supports the Council’s effort to stop them. But, pushing a bill through, in what seems to be a “knee-jerk” reaction, will have numerous unintended consequences that will negatively impact regular homeowners. Based on discus- sions during Council and committee meetings, Council members are aware of that and have voted “WR” (with reservations) or offered up their own versions of Bill 110, likely in an effort to have the least amount of impact.

Bill 110 would temporarily stop the issuance of building permits for homes that don’t meet certain criteria, such as on floor area ratio (FAR), parking and setbacks. Meant to address a handful of true monster homes, Bill 110 will also prevent homeowners trying to build a larger home for their multigenerational household, or a luxury home that is 4,000 square feet, or even a production home on the Ewa Plain.

Furthermore, if your home deviates from the stated criteria, then you would need approval from the City Council, adding another two to three months to the already long process of getting a building permit. And, if the Council makes no decision within 60 days, your application is automatically denied. There is no incentive for the Council to even act.

Bill 110 CD2 assumes that all lots are level and rectangular in shape. It increases setback requirements to a point where your lot could be too narrow to build anything practical or functional. Its FAR includes unlivable garage/carport spaces and covered lanais, which aren’t currently considered in the formula. It increases parking requirements to where an actual single-family home of 4,001 square feet would require six parking spaces.

Many of our member contractors build homes that, under any version of Bill 110, would be considered the “monster” homes the Council is trying to prevent. Their clients have spent many months, even years, planning for, saving and obtaining financing for their dream home, many of which are multigenerational. With the high cost of housing, a limited supply as well as our culture, many households have three or even four generations under one roof. These regular families, our friends and neighbors, would be swept under Bill 110 and not be able to build their home….

read … Bill to block ‘monster homes’ goes too far

Legislators Making Housing Even More Unaffordable

SA:  Several bills were introduced at this year’s state Legislature to address concerns about large-scale houses (take advantage of an opportunity to squeeze the supply of housing even more).

House Bill 2483 has passed two readings of the House. The measure, introduced by Rep. Takashi Ohno (D, Nuuanu-Liliha-Alewa Heights), would require Honolulu to restrict the number of bedrooms and allowable residents who live in what’s defined as a “detached dwelling.” The bill also calls for requiring that houses provide on-site parking equal to the number of bedrooms they have.

The city Department of Planning and Permitting submitted testimony against the bill, stating that it encroaches on the city’s regulatory authority.

Two bills on the agenda of the Senate Public Safety Committee’s meeting at 2:05 p.m. today would impose penalties on people who lie to county building inspectors or others looking into violations. Senate Bill 2092 would make it a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 for lying either orally or in writing to a city or county inspector. Senate Bill 2722 would make it a Class C felony, carrying a maximum fine of $10,000, to lie to inspectors, describing it as “obstructing county real property zoning enforcement operations.”

Both were introduced by Sen. Stanley Chang (D, Diamond Head-Kahala-Hawaii Kai).

Senate Bill 2279, also introduced by Chang, would require an owner-builder to provide proof of withholding of applicable taxes and that workers’ compensation insurance be provided to those workers contracted to do the work.

read …State lawmakers address ‘monster houses’

Danner Scheme Pushes Really Small Houses for DHHL

MN: …Two bills relating to housing for Native Hawaiians will be heard in committee at the Hawaii legislature this week.

Senate Bill 2424 and House Bill 2473 seek to establish a public private partnership to leverage $5 million in state funds to create a $20 million revolving loan fund for the development of affordable tiny homes on Hawaiian Home Lands.

The tiny home loan fund would support the building of 10,000 tiny homes on Hawaiian Home Lands by 2026. The homes would be required to be priced at or below $125,000.

In addition, supporters of the legislation including leaders with the Hawaiian Community Assets organization say it would build the capacity of nonprofit developers to increase the affordable housing stock on Hawaiian Home Lands.

read … Danner Scheme

HB2754: State to Recognize Waianae Tweekers Tent City

SA: …In response to growing concerns about one of the state’s largest homeless encampments — Pu‘uhonua o Waianae, next to the Waianae Small Boat Harbor — several state representatives want a new law that would protect the occupants from getting swept off the state-owned land.

“It’s a big one,” said Rep. John Mizuno, chairman of the House Health and Human Services Committee, which is scheduled to hear HB 2754 Wednesday morning. “It’s a bill that has a lot of heart for the homeless. … We want to give them a little bit of time to transition out.”

(Translate: Die from overdose.)

Mizuno expects that a ban on enforcing criminal trespass laws for Pu‘uhonua o Waianae would have a specific end date, although none is identified in the bill, which states, “The purpose of this act is to exempt the land where the homeless community of Pu‘uhonua O Waianae currently exists from the offense of criminal trespass onto state lands.”….

But officials with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, which owns the 19.5-acre parcel below Pu‘uhonua o Waianae as well as the Waianae Small Boat Harbor next door, are trying to figure out what to do about skyrocketing water use at the harbor, along with concerns about hygiene, trash and potential destruction of cultural and natural resources within the encampment blamed on both humans and their dogs….

A recent report to the Legislature said the population of Pu‘uhonua o Waianae has ranged from a low of 170 people to a high of 319….

Mizuno has spent more than a decade calling for the creation of safe zones for Hawaii’s homeless. He’s now re-branded the concept to call them “ohana zones,”….

“I can’t get their minds off of safe zones being a tent city,” Mizuno said…..

Tanya Tehotu, executive director of the Kealahou West Oahu nonprofit group, which provides social service outreach to Pu‘uhonua o Waianae, said the homeless occupants, in general, have become less willing to move out over time.

Homeless people living on the street tend to be more willing to move into a shelter “when they hit rock bottom,” Tehotu said.

But that’s not the case for most residents of Pu‘uhonua o Waianae.

“Maybe a few years ago” some homeless people in the encampment may have been willing to relocate to a shelter or even a permanent home, she said.

“It was more common before,” Tehotu said. “Now they’ve built their own community. They’re comfortable.”  (And they have plenty of meth.)

SA: HB2754 Removed from Hearing Agenda

Big Q: What should be done about the Pu’uhonua o Waianae homeless encampment?

read … Bill would prevent sweep of Waianae homeless camp

HB2461: $1.2M to Pay for Festering Homeless Tent Cities on Big Island

WHT: …The bill is backed by Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim and his Executive Assistant Lance Niimi, who specializes in combating the island’s homelessness problem.

Niimi said the proposal would include units for both individuals and families, and space would be provided for homeless living in vehicles who would be granted access to community centers with amenities like bathrooms, communal showers, lockers, mailboxes and a kitchen. He said each site could theoretically support up to 100 people….

The bill would appropriate nearly $1.2 million from the state’s general fund for fiscal year 2018-19 to pay for construction and infrastructure. It would pull an additional $1.36 million for the two sites’ “management, maintenance, and day-to-day operations” for the same time period. The latter would be an annually recurring fee for as long as the sites exist.

HB 2461 has cleared the House committees on Health and Human Services and Housing with amendments. Those amendments include establishing a special fund for appropriated monies, removing a previously included waiver of county permitting and construction fees, and changing the bill’s effective date, which Lowen said is standard practice.

The measure’s next hurdle is the House Judiciary Committee, where a hearing for the bill must be filed by today. The bill must then be heard and moved out of committee by Thursday if it is to survive. If it does, it next heads to the Committee on Finance….

HB2461: Text, Status 

Testimony: “I am in opposition to this bill because I think it poses the threat of significant problems for our community. In the homeless community in Hawaii there is drug use, theft, mental illness and sexual abuse. By allowing a temporary shelter to be build so close to a community with families and young children is irresponsible. There is no regulation on how the structure would be utilized and I feel that it would be vandalized and abused, eventually leaving an empty dilapidated building without solving any homeless problem. By allowing members of the homeless community to come live for free creates no sense of respect or ownership and it has been proven over and over again that this type of shelter does not help in the long run….“

HTH: Good News: Door closes on homeless tent cities bill

read … Festering

More Students Get Labeled in HSTA push for SPED Positions

SA: The number of special-education students in the Nanakuli-Waianae Complex Area rose sharply this academic year, and schools can’t keep up with the demand for qualified teachers.

Nearly 18 percent of students were identified as needing special education, up from 15 percent the previous year. That is the highest rate in the state, which averaged nearly 11 percent.

As far as staffing, only one of the 19 new teachers recruited to work in special education this year in the area is licensed in the field, while 14 are still in teacher education programs. That’s out of 153 special-education teachers in the complex.

The figures were presented Feb. 1 to the Board of Education’s Student Achievement Committee, the latest in a series of presentations on special education in different parts of the state….

read … Manipulation

SB2910 Grid Resiliency Rebates: Another Cash Giveaway to Wealthy Green Energy Schemers

IM: …The 2017 Hawai`i State Legislature heard SB 2910 which would established a Grid Resiliency Capital Investment Program within the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT).

Several individuals and groups supported the bill, including The Alliance for Solar Choice (TASC), the Sierra Club of Hawai`i, Hawaii Solar Energy Association, Javier Mendez-Alvarez, and the Oahu County Committee (OCC) Legislative Priorities Committee of the Democratic Party of Hawai`i…..

SB2910: Text, Status

read … Electric Grid Resiliency Faces State and Federal Hurdles

HB2007: Helicopters To Be Taxed as Aircraft?

IM: …“HB 2007 will provide needed parity in tax treatment for all helicopters and with aircraft.”….The House Transportation Committee passed the bill. Assuming SB 2007 flies forward, the next hearing will be held before the Finance Committee….

read … Giving Hawai`i Tax Breaks to the Rich

EPA Settles Syngenta Pesticide Claim For Pennies On The Dollar

CB: (Because everybody knows that anti-GMO activists are wasting our time…) the GMO company will pay $150,000 instead of the $4.8 million that had been sought for exposing Kauai workers to pesticides….

read … Anti-GMO Hysteria  is Just Nuisance Money

Study: Molokai Ferry not Feasible

MN: …For the Molokai ferry, the optimal price for one adult round-trip ticket was calculated at $90. If 101 people rode the ferry every day (the “realistic”average in the study but almost four times the daily ridership in the Molokai ferry’s final days) at that price, they would generate about $3.3 million in revenue, just shy of the $3.4 million minimum expected operating costs.

read … Ferry

Third Deedy trial pushed back as attorney prepares federal appeal

HNN: …The manslaughter trial against Christopher Deedy has now been pushed back to October as his attorney prepares a federal appeal aiming to get the case dropped.

In December, the state Supreme Court said a third trial could proceed – a ruling which Deedy's attorney called erroneous.

"It is just wrong to continue to try somebody time and time and time again until you get the result you want," Attorney Thomas Otake said in December….

read … Lynch Mob

Trump’s Wanna-be Secretary of State Tours Hawaii With top Trump-hater

KGI: …Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (who wanted to be Trump’s Sec’y of State) and Nina Turner, president of Our Revolution, traveled across Hawaii this past weekend to promote citizen engagement, grassroots organizing, and efforts to reform and strengthen democracy and the Democratic Party.

They responded to questions from the audience and encouraged residents in each county to stay involved in local issues, testify and share their stories, volunteer or run for elected office, and become agents of change for equality and justice for all.

The four events on Kauai, Oahu, Hawaii Island and Maui were sponsored by the Democratic Party of Hawaii. Nina Turner spoke about her work to reform the Democratic National Committee as a member of the Unity Reform Commission, including getting rid of superdelegates, incentivizing open primaries and same-day registration for more accessible elections, and financial transparency….

Bannon’s Breitbart: “Tulsi Gabbard Is the Best Pick for Secretary of State”

read … Working for the revolution

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