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Wednesday, February 21, 2018
February 21, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:40 PM :: 3582 Views

Keli‘i Akina Urges OHA Board to Remove CEO

OHA Reform? Lots Of Promises No Real Action

False Missile Alert: Report Calls for Major changes at HI-EMA 

Study: Hawaii Residents Deepest in Debt

Most Sinful States? Hawaii Ranks 35th

Hawaii Among Least Affordable States for Your Aging Parents

Key vote on Hawaii Co GET increase today

HTH: …The council, while meeting as the Finance Committee, gave the surcharge a negative recommendation with a 3-6 vote. The bill can die today if it fails to get a majority vote in support. If there are enough yes votes, it will advance to a second and final reading. 

UPDATE: County Council postpones action on proposed GET increase

Puna Councilwoman Jen Ruggles, one of the no votes, said during the Monday meeting that the tax increase hits low-income people the hardest….

A resolution to stop additional fuel tax increases was postponed during Tuesday’s Finance Committee meeting. Council members said they wanted to wait until after the GET vote.

Additionally, county staff say the increase in fuel tax from 8.8 cents to 15 cents per gallon on Aug. 1 is bringing in less revenue than expected. While the county estimated an extra cent in tax would generate another $1 million a year, Aaron Brown, Public Works business manager, said the figure is closer to $850,000 because of lower consumption.

The county fuel tax is scheduled to reach 23 cents in the 2019-20 fiscal year, when it matches Maui’s rate.

The county administration is in the middle of planning for the next budget, which begins July 1.

Sako said it hasn’t been determined yet if any additional tax increases are going to be needed on top of the GET.

Kim claimed there is no fat in the $490.8 million budget…

Union negotiations aren’t the only reason expenses are increasing for the county. The county Salary Commission recently authorized large pay increases for administration positions and council members that adds $1.3 million to the budget.

The mayor and many top administrators got raises in 2014…

The county has until March 31 to approve the GET increase, under the state law….

read … Key vote on GET increase today

Hawaii Co Ballot initiative requires more public input prior to raises

HTH: …A charter amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot adding more transparency to how top county officials get raises took its first step forward Tuesday when the County Council Finance Committee voted 9-0 to advance the measure to the first of three council votes.

“It gives the checks and balances to the people to give meaningful comment to the Salary Commission, who will hopefully take those comments and readjust,” said Sue Lee Loy. “They’re the ones who are going to pay the bills and they need a seat at the table.”….

read … Ballot initiative requires more public input prior to raises

SB2648: HEI Retaliation on PUC for Opposing NextEra?

IM: …The proposed bill, SB 2648, asserts that the State Legislature should impose conditions on the makeup of the Commission…

The bill requires that the Commissioners reach consensus….

The bill states, “A commissioner who discusses relevant commission-related information at a meeting with an outside party shall inform the other commissioners of the meeting.”…

The bill states, “Increasing the number of commissioners from three to five promotes diversity”, and then states, “the commission may form panels of three commissioners to handle smaller dockets” without specifying how the three-member panels are chosen or what a smaller docket is….

Many believe that the attack is personal in nature, and that a well-functioning entity may be broken as a result.

The Senate Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on the bill on Friday….

read … NextEra Retaliation

SB2071: Will Hawaii Finally Get a Police Standards Board?

CB: …House Bill 2071 has passed one committee and is scheduled for a hearing in House Finance on Thursday.

The bill makes some aspects of creating a statewide board clear. The new board would be required to adopt minimum standards for employment, including establishing a criminal justice training curriculum. The board also would come up with criteria needed to  certify an officer, or revoke the certification if warranted.

The bill also specifies some misconduct that would merit revoking a license. That includes omitting information on the officer’s employment application, interfering with a board investigation, or committing a felony, for example.

But similar to Arizona’s statute, Hawaii’s law would leave it up to the board to create many of the rules….

Hawaii is the only state without a state standards and training board…

read … This Is What A Statewide Police Board Might Look Like In Hawaii

Kauai Council Trying to Abolish Term Limits

KGI: …Among other items on todays agenda, there is a proposal to extend the ability of councilmembers to serve an infinite number of terms, and a proposal to allow councilmembers to, engage in dialogue, explore the issues and ask questions of the public (and each other) during public meetings. Yes, the issues on the table today are surreal and a bit outrageous.

Councilmember Kagawa’s proposal to end term limits is being heard today at 1:30 p.m. Anyone who cares about this issue is encouraged to show up at the Historic County Building to testify, or send an email asap to: counciltestimony@kauai.gov

County councilmembers currently are limited to serving four consecutive two-year terms or eight consecutive years. The proposal being considered today, if approved by voters, would eliminate term limits and allow councilmembers to serve an unlimited number of terms….

KGI: Term limits proposal draws fire

read … Term Limits

Retaliation Games: Kauai Lawsuit not Dismissed

KGI: …A motion to dismiss a civil case filed against the County of Kauai and several individuals, based on the failure to state a claim, was denied in Fifth Circuit Court Tuesday.

According to a complaint filed in September by longtime county employee Charles Rapozo, his then supervisor Edward Sarita denied him proper training and safety gear to clean tiles containing asbestos at Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall.

The complaint says he was retaliated against for bringing up asbestos in the hall and as a result, wasn’t given work assignments by his supervisor for over a year. He continued to show up for work, the complaint says, spending his days in the parking lot…..

read … Judge denies case dismissal

New Oahu law to ban lying down on bus stops

HNN: …Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed the measure into law Tuesday, saying the ban is about providing a "safe and reliable" place for bus riders.

The ban goes into effect June 14 and will prohibit lying down at bus stops from 4 a.m. to 1 a.m. the following day.

“Just as our sidewalks are meant for the movement of pedestrians, our covered bus stops are meant to provide shelter for riders of TheBus and need to be kept free and clear,” Caldwell said, in a news release….

News Release: Mayor signs bill preventing lying down at bus stops

KGI: New rules for Kauai county bus stops

read … New Oahu law to ban lying down on bus stops

Soft on Crime: Career criminal who led police on wild chase sentenced to 5 Years

HNN:  … After Bagio's statement, a judge sentenced him to what amounts to five years behind bars because he was allowed to serve multiple terms concurrently.

In August 2016, Bagio led police on a two-hour chase, zigzagging across Oahu.

The chase ended in Aiea when he hit multiple cars stuck in rush-hour traffic on the H-1 Freeway….

(5 yrs – time served – good behavior = Should be out any day now)

read … Will be out soon

Matson profits Jump Thanks to Republican Tax Cuts

SA: …Hawaii’s largest ocean cargo shipping company brought in fewer containers to the state last year but generated a lot more profit thanks to the recent federal corporate tax overhaul.

Honolulu-based Matson Inc. announced today that it earned $232 million last year, up from $81 million the year before.

The gain was mainly the result of a $155 million tax benefit generated by federal tax rule changes enacted recently by Congress….

Container volume between Hawaii and the mainland decreased 7 percent last year for Matson. Other major routes served by the company were mixed, with a 2 percent decline in Alaska and a 7 percent increase in China….

read … Matson profits big on tax change

Usual Post-Shooting Wave of Gun Control Rhetoric—No Word on Lunatic Control

 

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