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Wednesday, December 12, 2018
December 12, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 3:34 PM :: 4027 Views

PETITION: Impeach City and County Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro

Machado remains OHA chair with support of full board

Urban Honolulu Native Hawaiian Population Declines 12%

Hawaii Cell Phone Taxes 7.75%

Regressive Progressives Plan Big Agenda for 2019 Legislature

As pressure grows for Kaneshiro to step aside, experts say city charter has process to impeach prosecutor

HNN: … Keith Kaneshiro is serving his fourth term in the elected position of Honolulu’s prosecuting attorney. And according to the city charter, it doesn’t take much to start the process of impeachment.

But even before that, there’s growing pressure for him to step aside as a federal investigation involving his office deepens….

“I think Mr. Kaneshiro should at least take a leave of absence because I don’t believe that our city’s top law enforcement official should remain in that position while being the target of a federal criminal investigation,” said Honolulu City Councilman Ron Menor.

While it is unclear if Kaneshiro plans to step down, there’s talk in the legal community of a petition to impeach the prosecutor…

According to the city charter, the process requires at least 500 signatures of registered voters, charging the prosecutor of malfeasance in office. The petition would then go to the courts, which would hold hearings. The exact timeline and procedure are unclear….

The state Attorney General’s office could also take over Kaneshiro’s authority.

A statement from the AG’s office said, “When compelling circumstances exist, the Attorney General may supersede the county prosecutor.”….

The AG’s office also confirmed that it has made contact with the prosecutor’s office.

Meanwhile, there are other calls for Kaneshiro to take leave, the way former Police Chief Louis Kealoha did when he was given a target letter.

“A lot of people feel that he should step back and let the dust clear, and if the dust clears, then he can return," said defense attorney Victor Bakke, who worked under Kaneshiro in the prosecutor’s office in the 1990s. “But if it doesn’t, then we need to put a stop to the damage that’s being caused.”…

read … As pressure grows for Kaneshiro to step aside, experts say city charter has process to impeach prosecutor

Proposed Hawaii Carbon Tax Would Add $0.88 per gallon of gasoline

SA: ….Starting at $15 per ton of carbon dioxide and increasing $10 per ton each year, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act would push the price of carbon to $100 per ton within a decade….

(According to the Global Warmers, $100 per metric ton carbon tax = $0.88 more tax per gallon of gasoline.)

the French government announced it would increase fuel taxes to discourage driving and encourage low-carbon transportation. It went poorly.

Violent demonstrations erupted in the streets of Paris and other French cities, forcing the government to delay for at least six months the tax hike. The protests raise concerns about public backlash against fuel taxes specifically and carbon pricing in general, and that’s a huge concern….

Late last month, a bipartisan group of lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives introduced legislation to place a fee on carbon and allocate all revenue to households in the form of a monthly dividend. Under the policy outlined in their bill, known as the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 7173), a majority of families, particularly low- and middle-income, will receive more money from the “carbon dividend” than they would pay in increased costs associated with the fee. 

(IQ Test: Do you believe this?)

read … Stick carbon-tax hikes to the people

Hawai`i Considers Green Taxes

IM: The Hawaii Climate Change Mitigation & Adaptation Commission unanimously agreed on November 27, 2018, to back legislation in the 2019 State Legislature session which would establish a carbon tax.

Numerous questions would need answers, as pointed out in the ililani media, Hawai`i Carbon Tax is Popular---The Devil is in the Details.

In essence, what is and isn`t covered, who administers the fund, and who receives the benefits of the fund?

State Senator Karl Rhoads plans to introduce a carbon tax in the 2019 State Legislature. The tax would be on gasoline, marine transportation, air travel, and electricity….

The Citizens' Climate Lobby is establishing Hawai`i chapters to work on a national carbon tax….

The average resident of the County of Hawai`i travels more miles per day than the average O`ahu resident. The County of Hawai`i has the highest percentage of their people struggling financially. Their bus system is minimal.

Should a state gas tax be imposed to discourage driving? Should those who can`t afford new efficient cars pay the most?…

read … Hawai`i Considers Green Taxes

Paul Brewbaker wrong about housing in Honolulu

SA: … As home prices in Hawaii reach new highs, this newspaper once again reports Paul Brewbaker’s narrow-minded statements about the relative affordability of housing in Honolulu (“$800,000 Honolulu home median considered modest,” Star-Advertiser, Dec. 2).

By quoting a few numbers and referring to general trends, he reaches conclusions with no sense of reality for most Honolulu families. Brewbaker ignores the fact that paying for an $800,000 house takes up more than 30 percent of a median household’s income, the threshold for affordability. That median-priced house is also not a three-bedroom, two-bath home that the household probably needs. That will cost you more like $1.24 million. A similar house in Akron, Ohio, costs $320,000.

I’m sure he is aware that skilled laborers and professionals in Honolulu are not paid four times as much as in Akron….

read … Paul Brewbaker wrong about housing in Honolulu

Hawaii is the only state not awarded federal BUILD transportation grants in 2018

KITV: … The Trump administration Tuesday announced it is distributing more than a billion dollars in federal grant funding for transportation projects nationwide. But none of that money is coming to Hawaii….

US DoT: BUILD Announcement

read … Hawaii is the only state not awarded federal BUILD transportation grants in 2018

Hawaii County’s New Pitch To State Seeks $150M For Lava Damage

CB: … Mayor Harry Kim is working on his second, pared-down attempt to get an apparently willing Legislature to help Hawaii County underwrite the massive cost of rebuilding lava-ravaged Puna.

“I think government will come through,” Kim said of the approximately $150 million disaster-relief package he’ll ask state lawmakers to approve during their upcoming session that starts in January.

That amount tops the combined $125 million the Legislature granted last session for recovery efforts on Kauai and Oahu after flooding caused extensive damage in mid-April.

But the $150 million in aid also is a relative bargain compared to Kim’s initial wish list that ballooned to $800 million in the months following the May eruption of the Kilauea volcano. The amount alarmed legislative leaders and left them unsatisfied with how it would be spent. No special session was convened to consider approving the emergency relief….

What’s Not Included: HRS 171-93: Law Allows Swap of Lava-Covered Lots for State Property in Zone 3

read … County’s New Pitch To State Seeks $150M For Lava Damage

Thanks to Regressive Progressives Once-Thriving Hawaii Dairy Industry Is On The ‘Brink Of Extinction’

CB: … There used to be 160 dairies in Hawaii. Only two remain, and one plans to close, meaning Hawaii could end up importing all of its milk….

Meadow Gold can set the price of milk it buys from local farms for processing. Minimum prices are typically set by state law, but the bottom was removed in 2014 when the Department of Agriculture amended rules allowing processors to buy milk from farmers at a lower price after Meadow Gold threatened to stop buying local milk.

“We weren’t getting paid what we felt we should have been getting paid,” Whitesides said. “That’s why we built (a processing) plant, to capture the local value of the product.”…

In 2017, Big Island Dairy’s herd of 1,500 milk cows produced nearly 9 percent of all milk in Hawaii….

dairy farming has been met with fierce community opposition (from TVR owners and the hotel industry) in recent years….

In 2012, resident (hysterics) were (programmed to become) upset when they learned that Big Island Dairy used GMO corn to feed the cows. (Wash rinse repeat.)

Last June, Kupale Ookala, a community group (TVR owners) represented by Oregon lawyer Charles Tebbutt, sued the dairy, alleging that the owners violated the Clean Water Act after residents claimed to have found bacteria in brown water downstream from the facility.

The Department of Health told Civil Beat in September that the dairy had been fined for wastewater discharge and that the department ordered the dairy to stop any further wastewater release.

Kupale Ookala claimed 5.8 million gallons of wastewater were discharged from the dairy from rainfall during and after Hurricane Lane, according to court documents filed earlier this year.

On Kauai, the proposed Hawaii Dairy Farms, backed by a $17.5 million investment by Civil Beat publisher Pierre Omidyar, faced two lawsuits while still in its planning stages.

One was brought by Friends of Mahaulepu (hotel owners front group), also represented by Tebbutt, and regarded potential violations of the Clean Water Act in 2015. The Ulupono Initiative, the investment firm behind Hawaii Dairy Farms, agreed to pay over $500,000 in attorney fees as well as $125,000 to fund a stream restoration on Kauai and protect endangered species.

Ulupono is now considering whether or not the Kauai dairy may be a good investment, said spokeswoman Amy Hennessey. There’s been no onsite work on the project in over a year, and Hennessey said Ulupono should come to a decision next month….

Bobby Grimes has a few weeks to save what’s left of the state’s milk industry. He’s got lofty plans, like investing millions of dollars into Cloverleaf Dairy, and has even expressed interest in acquiring Big Island Dairy….  

However, that all hangs on whether or not Grimes and Hawaii Agriculture, Energy & Earth Products, a company owned by Cleveland-based Gottleib Enterprises, will be able to close on the sale in the next couple weeks….  

HNN: Big Island dairy that spilled millions of gallons of raw sewage faces $91K state fine

read … Thank a ‘Progressive’

Lame Duck Maui Council Pushes Big Agenda

MN: …Nearly 50 people testified before the Maui County Council on Tuesday during a meeting that featured a packed agenda, including more funding for the Wailuku civic complex and bills to construct a parking lot in Kihei and relating to sand mining….

The bills are up for first reading Thursday. The final council meeting of the year will be on Dec. 21….

read … Lame Duck

PGV gets green light to clear road

HTH: … Puna Geothermal Venture was given the go-ahead to restore road access to its lava-locked property.

Clearing of the “pioneer road” at the site off Highway 132 began this weekend after PGV received a grubbing and grading permit from Hawaii County, said Mike Kaleikini, senior director of Hawaiian affairs for Ormat Technologies, which owns the 38-megawatt geothermal power plant. …  He estimated the road could take a week or two to complete….

The permit was authorized after Mayor Harry Kim issued a supplemental disaster declaration that allows the county to permit clearing of the fresh lava rock….

read … PGV gets green light to clear road

Ex-Real Estate Commission vice chairman changes plea in embezzlement case

HTH: …During a hearing Tuesday, a former vice chairman of the state Real Estate Commission pleaded no contest to theft after being charged last year with embezzling more than $200,000 from clients.

As part of a plea agreement, Scott A. Sherley changed his plea on a charge of first-degree theft from not guilty to no contest. His sentence will be determined in February….

Sherley, formerly the Hawaii Island representative of the Real Estate Commission between 2010 and 2016, was charged in December 2017 after he and his wife, Penny Sherley, were accused of misappropriating funds from two clients between 2011 and 2015.

The two Sherleys were accused of embezzling $135,633 from the revocable living trust of Edward Pereira and Frances Pereira, as well as an additional $80,000 from the Kawili Regency condominium owners’ association….

read … Ex-Real Estate Commission vice chairman changes plea in embezzlement case



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