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Thursday, April 5, 2018
April 5, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:54 PM :: 3394 Views

Hawaii’s ill-chosen legalization of assisted suicide

Grassroot: Low unemployment masks Hawaii’s unhealthy economy

Ethics Ruling: How DTL Pays Senator Delacruz -- Legally

Ethics: City Supervisor Caught Working Second Job on City Time

Honolulu Among U.S. Solar Leading Cities in New Report

Hunt for Few Remaining Rats on Lehua Island

Death Tax: Hawaii One of Only a Few States

DOI moves to rescind 'illegal' threatened species rule

Legislators Move a Dozen Gut-And-Replace Bills

CB: …On Thursday, the Senate Ways and Means Committee, chaired by (Hanabusa supporter) Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz, had an agenda featuring at least a dozen such bills — more than Capitol observers could recall ever seeing at one time. Four bills were deleted from that agenda late Wednesday. 

Other committee chairs have also made ample use of this tool. (Hanabusa supporter) Rep. Sylvia Luke, who chairs the House Finance Committee, gutted a Senate bill from last year that would have expanded the income tax credit for low-income renters and replaced it last month with legislation to give the neighbor island counties more hotel tax revenue.

It’s a tactic allowed under the rules that each chamber sets for itself, and has even been used on some of the biggest issues such as managing telescope activities atop Mauna Kea and protecting undeveloped land….

House Bill 2304 initially would have established the Industrial Hemp Special Fund to pay for a pilot program. … The measure initially received no traction after crossing over to the Senate. But on Monday its referral to the Agriculture Committee was dropped and the Ways and Means Committee set a hearing for Thursday on a new draft that has nothing to do with hemp.  The draft, only made public when the committee agenda was posted Monday, would appropriate $4.5 million to design and build water systems in east Maui for agriculture and other purposes….

House Bill 1481, also on Thursday’s agenda, went from forming a working group to study blockchain technology to dismantling the Kakaako community development district and creating an east Kapolei community development district instead.

Senate Bill 2525, which Dela Cruz introduced, would have accomplished this, but it appears stalled in the House Finance Committee. The measure faced opposition from community groups like Kakaako United and only lukewarm support from others.

But instead of letting the proposal die, Dela Cruz had planned to place its contents in the Senate draft of HB 1481. He pulled it from the agenda late Wednesday. 

House Bill 973, another measure that Ways and Means planned to hear a proposed new version of Thursday, was set to go from funding a research and grant technology program to providing $1.5 million to help put on the 30th Festival of Pacific Arts in 2020. This too was pulled at the last minute from Thursday’s agenda.

read … What’s Up With All The Gut-And-Replace Trickery At The Legislature This Year?

HIEMA Funding: Ige Works Around Hanabusa Obstruction

SA: In the aftermath of the Jan. 13 false alarm, Hawaii National Guard Brig. Gen. Kenneth Hara issued a report urging the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency to prepare a strategic plan and update its All Hazards Catastrophic Plan to include chemical, biological and nuclear scenarios.

That strategic plan and the update were expected to cost about $800,000, and were to be requested from the Legislature this year. However, lawmakers (supporting Hanabusa) questioned the need for that funding at the time, and the request was never submitted.

Instead, Hara said the state Department of Budget and Finance released $780,000 in Department of Defense funding that had been restricted by the Ige administration as a cost-saving measure….

House Finance Committee Chairwoman Sylvia Luke (a Hanabusa supporter) said the administration’s decision to use restricted funds to develop a strategic plan and update the catastrophic plan is “problematic.”….

Most Telling Comment: “"Micro managing"? It must be re-election year, when our legislators start to "talk stink" about State government employees doing their jobs.”

read … Obstruction Defeated

OIP needs to break logjam on requests for public records

SA: …Open government is a topic that should resonate with all of us because without transparency, it is impossible to hold public officials accountable. When our systems meant to foster open government are not working, we must examine why and collectively work toward solutions. Disappointingly, a bill that could facilitate these solutions, Senate Bill 3092, will not move forward this session. This legislation sparked necessary discussion about lengthy delays for decisions from the Office of Information Practices (OIP)….

OIP acknowledges the backlog of requests and set a goal to reduce wait time for decisions to one year by 2022, but that objective raises several new queries.

What is OIP’s plan to accomplish that objective? Why will it take four years to get there? And, as a matter of Hawaii policy, is a one-year delay acceptable?…

Now is the time for the governor, legislators, OIP and the public to work together to address this issue…..

read … OIP needs to break logjam on requests for public records

Hirono Still Being Treated for Thyroid Cancer

SA: …Hirono said she continues to undergo long-term immunotherapy treatment for cancer in her thyroid gland. The senator disclosed last year that she had been diagnosed with kidney cancer and had surgery to remove a kidney and part of her rib.

“I’ve been very open about my health challenge because I think it’s really important to let my constituents know that in spite of the fact that I am still in treatment, nothing about this treatment prevents me from doing my job,” she said. “I’m optimistic and certainly that optimism is shared by my doctors.”…

CB: In October, doctors found small spots on her thyroid gland.

read … Spreading

Piñata: Maui County Democrats Interviewing Applicants for HD8 Vacancy

MW: The Maui County Democratic Party has set Wednesday, April 11 by 3:30 p.m. as the deadline to apply for the District 8 State House seat left vacant by Representative Joseph Souki.

Any Democrat in good standing for at least six months prior to the application deadline who lives in House District 8, which encompasses Kahakuloa, Waihee, Puuohala, Wailuku and Waikapu, may submit their name.

Applicants must fill out an Application Packet which includes a “Statement of Candidacy” form, “Application Credentials & Questions” form, submit a resume, fill out a “Nomination Form” including verified signatures of least five party members within District 8. All forms will be available at this link starting at 3:30 p.m. on April 4. Recommendations from third parties will not be considered as only applicants may submit their own name.

All applications will be received by the Maui County Chair, Timothy Lara, who will date and time stamp each application. A confirmation of receipt will be sent within 24 hours for all applications received. All applicants will be vetted for residency and “good standing” before making it to the official list that will be forwarded to the District 8 Council for consideration.

The Democratic Party’s District 8 Council will comprise the official nominating committee and will meet on Saturday, April. 14th. The committee will allow each candidate to speak for up to 8 minutes and committee members will be able to vote for up to three candidates. Casting more than one vote per candidate will not be allowed….

read … Piñata

Wisdom: New chorus of voices questions plan to block sale of some sunscreens

HNN: …some cancer experts say more studies are needed before some sunscreens are blocked, and they worry a ban could undo years of education about skin cancer prevention.

"We want to preserve the coral reef, but ... we don't want to diminish our use of sunscreen which has been proven to reduce risk for skin cancer," said Kevin Cassell, president of the Hawaii Skin Cancer Coalition.

Karen Glanz, visiting professor at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center, added: "The research is trying to isolate a chemical without taking into account all the other factors that are affecting the coral reefs."

Bruce Anderson, administrator of the Division of Aquatic Resources at the Department of Land and Natural Resources, said the agency supports the intent of the bill. But he says the biggest threat to coral reefs is climate change and polluted runoff.

Rather than a ban, the agency favors more education about using alternative sunscreens….. 

HNN: Cancer experts say don't block sale of sunscreen with oxybenzone

read … New chorus of voices questions plan to block sale of some sunscreens

SCR76: Will Legislators Join Trump-Supporters’ Call for Constitutional Convention to Gut the First Amendment?

CB: …“The Other Way to Amend the Constitution: The Article V Constitutional Convention Amendment Process,”….A U.S. constitutional amendment could correct the awful consequences of the Citizens United ruling of the Supreme Court. (blablabla)

Reality for those few who can handle it:  Legislators Vote to Abolish ERS, End Free Speech for Star-Advertiser

More Reality: Hawaii Resolutions for National Constitutional Convention Failed – “Outside of the hearing room, the proponents sought to engage others, "why don`t you support freedom", they asked. Many identified themselves as Trump supporters.”

read … Idiots and Morons United

Harry Kim Censors Mural of Hula Dancer Exercising 2nd Amendment Rights

HNN: …What is unusual about the painting is that the dancer depicted is holding an AK-47 assault rifle, a scene meant to symbolize hula and music as weapons that help keep the Hawaiian culture alive.

The message, it seems, did not sit well with everyone; about a third of the way through their work, the artists said they were were visited by a representative from the Hawaii County mayor's office.

"I talked to the owner first, and I told her 'I just want you to know this is your business. It's your right to do whatever you want with your wall,'" said Mayor Harry Kim. "But I just want you to know the number of calls I'm getting regards to concerns about the taste of what is being done."

Artist Keoni Payton says shortly after that visit, the owner of the store asked them to get rid of the gun – which he says is key to his message.

"You're trying to force us to think a certain way, to conform, because you don't understand where we're coming from," said Payton. "I feel that it's an infringement on my basic rights of freedom of expression."….

A giant red block is now painted over the rifle. The artists are now striving to send a new message of censorship.

read … Censored mural in Hilo showcased hula dancer holding assault rifle

Mayor Kim’s point man on homeless Worn out by Demands of Managing Homeless Tent City—Quits

HTH: Lance Niimi, an executive assistant to Mayor Harry Kim and Hawaii County’s homeless coordinator, resigned his post.

Niimi’s resignation was effective March 31, per a press release sent Wednesday by the mayor’s office….

“I really appreciate the work he’s done, but I know it took its toll,” the mayor said. “I don’t know how many times he went to Kona to sleep at the shelter because we just didn’t have the money for security and those kind of things.”

When Kim took office in 2016, he initially tapped Niimi to serve as assistant housing administrator at the Office of Housing and Community Development. But shortly into Niimi’s stint in government, the mayor began tasking the longtime social worker with projects involving the island’s substantial homeless population.

Niimi said the complexity of the issue created an intense demand on his time and attention, which he envisioned only growing larger as the county tries to implement new methods to tackle the problem.

“The timing was good for me,” Niimi said about his decision to step down. “We had just closed Camp Kikaha and I saw it was going to be much more than I could give down the road. … I’ll take a month off and pray on it and re-stabilize my life, then see what will be next for me.”…

read … No Tent City

UH: How to Proselytize the Eco-Religion

CB: In the “post-truth” era of “fake news,” teaching critical thinking (the catechism) about climate change (of the eco-religion) is becoming more challenging (easier than ever because it is our State religion and Tribal identifier). Thus, we would like to respond to the EPA email, “Consistent Messages on Climate Adaptation” that was recently leaked to Huffington Post, generating a fresh round of dismay among scientists (priests), teachers (nuns), and climate advocates (acolytes).

The University of Hawaii is committed to telling the truth about climate change. Students deserve to be presented with accurate information about anticipated climate change impacts to their futures from expert faculty across all academic disciplines; today it is even more important that we also teach media literacy, and equip students to successfully navigate the information age to discover truths for themselves…. 

(Wow I barely need to change any of that to get the point across.  They possess Truth with a capital T and you must bow before the Goddess Gaia and Tithe to her Priests.)

read … Proselytize

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