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Friday, May 7, 2010
May 7, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:19 PM :: 10259 Views

LINK>>>National Democrats to 're-evaluate' participation in Hawaii Congressional race—Advertiser: “So what?”

LINK>>>WaPo still desperately trying to come up with excuses for Djou victory

LINK>>>Taxes and Insurance make Hawaii most expensive State to own a car

LINK>>>Hawaii-based 307th Signal Battalion deploying to Afghanistan

Abercrombie in “Danger Zone” due to atheist attack on Aiona

SB: The state Democratic Party has entered a danger zone in alleging a connection between an international evangelical group with anti-homosexual activities in Uganda, and an activist organization's effort to link Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona to the evangelical group is even more reckless. The party should limit resolutions to those that are factually based — even as the episode shows that the separation between church and state can be a fine line indeed.

The Democratic Party's Oahu County Convention last Saturday approved a resolution asserting that the International Transformation Network is trying to make Christianity a "state-sponsored religion" in Hawaii and "played a significant role organizing and inspiring Ugandan legislators" who drafted the anti-homosexual bill.

The Hawaii Citizens for the Separation of State and Church went a step further two days later, issuing a news release linking Aiona, now running for governor, to the evangelical network and its Hawaii chapter, Transformation Hawaii. While Aiona served as honorary chairman of a Transformation Hawaii rally at the Waikiki Shell in 2005, he participates in many community and faith-based gatherings and "supports people of all religious faiths," his campaign explained. Mayor Mufi Hannemann (running against Abercrombie) and the late Kauai Mayor Brian Baptiste also attended the rally.

(The Oahu Democrat Convention was an Abercrombie campaign rally.  It is controlled by the Abercrombie, Case, Cayetano wing of the Party.)

Honolulu architect Francis Oda, chairman of the Transformation Networks' Global Council, said it helped fix roadways and repaired a medical clinic in Uganda.

(Check this out…)

(Abercrombie backer), former Gov. Ben Cayetano, a lawyer, has said it is "pretty obvious" that Aiona "is an evangelical Christian who has a tough time separating church and state."

That is a legitimate issue.  Aiona, a former assistant city prosecutor and state judge, said, "I have spent my entire adult life upholding and defending the Constitution, including the separation between church and state."

He, and other politicians, will need to keep that in mind, especially heading into an election season where moral values, for instance, may be misguidedly mistaken for civil rights.

(Actually it is changing marriage which the SB has worked to confuse with a ‘civil right’.)

REALITY FOR THOSE WHO DARE: Which kills more: ideology or religion?

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Feds: Union Wrong, Teachers Can Work Legally For Free

Gov. Linda Lingle's request that teachers work for free on the final three furlough days of this year sparked an outcry.

An investigation by Civil Beat, prompted by questions from users of the news service, has determined that her proposal, although not necessarily practical, was legal. And the union's argument against the proposal was misplaced.

Hawaii's public school teachers would not be breaking any federal labor laws by volunteering on furlough days, said Deanne Amaden, a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Labor in San Francisco.

9 days ago>>>Linda Smith: Furlough Volunteers are legal

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Hawaii Democrats' Power Focus

The focus is; maintaining a power majority at all costs. Forget that folks are losing their jobs, their homes, can’t pay their bills, or put food on the table.

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News Flash: Rep. Hirono Elected to Third Term

In the 2010 election, Hirono thus far faces no primary challenger.….

One Republican, Antonio Gimbernat of Makawao, Maui, has filed. Another Republican, John Willoughby of Honolulu, a United Airlines pilot, has pulled papers, as have Libertarian Patric Brock of Kihei, Maui, and Andrew Von Sonn, a nonpartisan candidate from Paia, Maui.

Through March 31, Hirono reported having $681,199 cash on hand and $127,099 in debt. Gimbernat had $565, Willoughby had no money, and Von Sonn had not reported.

Another potential challenger, Republican Ramsay Wharton, also had no cash on hand and had yet to pull papers. But Wharton, a former TV journalist, has a web page, , as does Willoughby, .

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CT&T, an electric vehicle manufacturer, hopes to build a plant, theme park and resort on Oahu

The total capital investment is expected to be about $200 million, with the facility itself costing up to $50 million to construct. White said the company is looking at four lots on Oahu. He gave an 18- to 24-month time line for construction.

(Advice to CT&T: “Run from this place and don’t look back!  Save yourselves!”)

HNN: Electric vehicles to be made in Hawaii

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Lawsuit contends hotel's lights put rare Hawaiian birds at risk

New shakedown strategy.

Totally Related: Hokuli`a Settlement Exposed

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Waste mismanagement

A Seattle-based firm that planned to ship hundreds of tons of the city's trash to the Pacific Northwest has been fined $40,400 by the state for illegally storing waste.

The state wants Hawaiian Waste Systems LLC to remove 100 tons of solid waste in 250 shipping containers at two parcels at Campbell Industrial Park, said Steve Chang, program manager with the state Health Department's solid-waste branch.

(Thanks Mufi)

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Maui:  $19.4M bottled up in tax appeals  

The Property Tax Division is looking for other ways to unlock revenues, such as cracking down on property owners who are in the wrong category and pursuing delinquents, he said. The county announced on Wednesday that it was scheduling its first tax foreclosure sale in more than a decade.

But Teruya noted that a significant portion of the cases are beyond the county's power to speed up. Around 680 property tax appeals were filed with the state Tax Appeals Court, a sharp increase from the 100 cases that went to the state court last year.

For those appeals, "it's up to the judge to hear the case," Teruya said.

Victorino said he was pleased that, in addition to the extra staff to process appeals, the Finance Department indicated it would try to bump high-value appeals to the top of the list so they could be resolved sooner.

"If we can get half of that money, that would really be a nice chunk of change," he said.

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State plans to auction ancient fishponds

"It's sad just to see how it is now," Cramer said.

In the 1990s, road widening of Kalanianaole Highway strangled the water flow that fed Kalauhaihai.

"When we had to put in some utility lines underground it cut off the artesian spring," state Transportation Director Brennon Morioka said.

The state acquired the property.

The house fell into disrepair and the pond turned to a puddle of stagnant water.

The state also holds title to the home and the land on the ocean side of Kalauhaihai.

And farther down the coast, the state owns a share of the Kanewai fishpond in Kuliouou. The state purchased the properties using money from the federal highway fund.

Cramer sees it another way.  "We don't want to have our fishponds up for auction. That would be a worst-case scenario. And the best case is that these fishponds stay in the public trust forever," he said.

(It has been a ‘public trust’ for 20 years now.  How has that worked out?)

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Kaua‘i hosts National Day of Prayer

The Continental Congress in 1775, before the formation of the nation, issued a proclamation recommending a day of public prayer be observed, and in 1798, during the quasi-war with France, President John Adams declared May 9, 1798 as a day during which citizens of all faiths were asked to pray “that our country may be protected from all the dangers which threaten it.”

The mayoral proclamation issued Thursday states “because of the faith of our founding fathers, public prayer and national days of prayer had a significant history in American tradition and are a vital part of our heritage.”

The Freedom From Religion Foundation, on Oct. 3, 2008, sued in a Madison, Wisc. federal court Bush, Jim Doyle, Shirley Dobson, chair of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, and White House Press Secretary Dana Perino, challenging the federal law designating the National Day of Prayer.

The Obama administration, in March, 2009, asked U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb to dismiss the case, arguing the FFRF group has no legal standing to sue and the tradition of the National Day of Prayer dated back to 1775. The suit was then amended to include Obama and Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.

On March 1, 2010, Crabb ruled the FFRF’s suit can proceed because the plaintiffs had demonstrated they suffered “concrete injury” that can potentially be remedied by judicial action.

RELATED: Which kills more: ideology or religion?

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Kenoi's proposal cuts $11M from budget, boosts property tax rates 31.5%

HILO -- Tax rates for the county's wealthiest property owners could spike as much as 31.5 percent under a "cautiously optimistic" budget proposed Wednesday by Mayor Billy Kenoi.

TOTALLY RELATED: Malu Motta: “I need one governor so he can pardon me.”

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Brenda Ford: “Somebody's going to make a lot of money off the fund. The people said 2 percent to buy land."

Councilmember Brenda Ford, closely ted to the Hokulia shake down operation: "I can't even begin to describe the pain and anger I feel that the council majority would constantly defy the will of the people," she said. "Somebody's going to make a lot of money off the fund. The people said 2 percent to buy land."

Totally Related: Hokuli`a Settlement Exposed

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Ooma hearing draws strong opposition

Concerns about loss of conservation land, the impact of airplane noise above a development and a developers' broken promises were reiterated at a state Land Use Commission meeting Wednesday.

Of the nearly 50 testifiers, more than 40 were in strong opposition to Ooma Beachside Village's request to reclassify 181 acres from conservation to urban and build a mixed-use development south of the Natural Energy Laboratory and Kona International Airport.

Many opponents recounted stories from their childhood, some in tears as they shared how much the land meant to them, and how a reclassification would hurt the island's children.

(And this is about a development under a noisy flight path….)

Totally Related: Hokuli`a Settlement Exposed

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Water rate increases for ag users fiercely opposed

The board is considering two options and may adopt either one or a different set of rates, based on input. Of the roughly 30 agricultural producers and residents in attendance, no one supported Option A, which implements an increase for ag users, from the current 85 cents per 1,000 gallons to 92 cents per 1,000 gallons starting July 1, then to $1.69 per 1,000 gallons in 2014.

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Hawaiian Air gets tentative OK for Honolulu-to-Haneda route

In its proposed decision, the DOT said selecting Hawaiian Airlines, which currently does not serve Japan, would add a new competitor to the U.S.-Tokyo market.

The agency also gave tentative approval to Delta for two routes to Haneda and American Airlines for one route. Applications by Continental and United airlines were rejected

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