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Wednesday, June 16, 2010
June 16, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 2:30 PM :: 15449 Views

RCCC to focus on reelecting Djou, Liberal website calls Hanabusa “untainted”

HNN: More speed bumps for Honolulu rail project (Its not just the Governor)

The governor's signature isn't the only thing needed to move forward.  Even if she signed off today, the City must clear several more hurdles before starting construction.

First - "Nobody has signed the Programmatic Agreement (PA) at this point - none of the federal agencies, nor us," said Laura Thielen, Department of Land and Natural Resources Chair….

Four agencies need to sign on to the PA, which outlines ways to minimize the impact on those sites.  The city says so far, three of them are on board: the Federal Transit Authority (FTS), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and Honolulu's Department of Transportation Services.

"No, that's not true. The FTA has confirmed that the consultation has not been completed and the city statement was premature," said Thielen.

The City says the three haven't technically signed, but have agreed to.

Here's another potential speed bump:  The federal government must now publish the final EIS to give federal leaders a 30-day comment period.  Any new concerns must by resolved before the project can move forward.

Then there's money….

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Shapiro: Mayor uses rail failings as boost to governor bid

Hannemann has hectored Lingle for months to approve an EIS she didn't have, while making not a peep about the long federal delay that he said in December was a minor matter of dotting "i's" and crossing "t's."

It turned out there were major federal concerns about the train running too close to Honolulu Airport runways, which required the city to alter the route.

After all the time the feds took, Lingle is entitled to a reasonable amount of review time of her own to be more than a rubber stamp, especially with rail opponents lined up to sue before the ink is dry on her signature.

Blaming the construction delay on Lingle appears to be Hannemann's way of deflecting criticism that his planned resignation next month to run for governor means walking out with the hugely expensive rail project he initiated hanging in limbo.

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Mayor Mufi Hannemann announces 24 furlough days for 2010-11 fiscal year

Governor Lingle managed to find a way out of School Furloughs…but the mayor is only beginning.

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Hawaii passes law mandating 180-day school year

HONOLULU — A new Hawaii law enacted Tuesday requires at least 180 school days a year as the state tries to shed its reputation for having the shortest amount of instructional time in the nation.

The law prevents the state from cutting the school year below 180 days due to budget cuts, which is what happened when teachers were furloughed on 17 instructional days during the recently ended school year.

Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona, the state's acting governor while Gov. Linda Lingle is traveling in Asia, signed the measure into law Tuesday. Hawaii was the only state in the nation that didn't have a law setting a minimum amount of instructional time….

Asking teachers to work longer hours may cost the state more money when it negotiates a new contract with the Hawaii State Teachers Association. Those negotiations are scheduled to begin this summer.

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Democrat Borreca: Isle GOP banking on 'down-ticket' contests

(In 2008) The real story remained: The Hawaii GOP continued on its path to political irrelevancy by not fielding a candidate in 20 House races and two Senate seats.

Even before the race started Democrats were guaranteed 25 wins.

GOP leaders today vow not to quit before the game starts. In fact, Dylan Nonaka, the GOP's executive director, says there will be a candidate for all 51 House seats and most contested Senate slots. They have a way to go, with only 25 Republican candidates pulling papers to run in House contests.

"We learned from '08," Nonaka says.

This year, Republicans feel that with the big boys battling in the races for governor, Congress and even mayor, there will not be enough institutional Democratic support from unions to help the so-called "down-ticket" races.

Democrats scoff in response, noting that the GOP plans "always are more of a hope, like a three-cushion shot, instead of a real plan."

The interesting wrinkle this year is that there are lots of nonpartisan races, and both Democrats and Republicans plan to play in all of them….

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SA: Not protecting civil unions hurts Hawaii's competitiveness

Funniest line: “Diversity is the fertilizer of this environment.”

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As HSTA Negotiations open, Civil Beat begins flacking mercilessly  (no surprise here)

Why this is no surprise:  Furloughs: Advertiser sides with “sustainability” billionaires, Furloughs: How Unions and the DoE aim to co-opt protesting parents   

 

Big Kauai project going forward despite slowdown  

Kukuiula, a 1,010-acre project spearheaded by the Kukuiula Development Co. Hawaii LLC, a collaboration between DMB Associates Inc. and A&B Properties Inc., combines luxury resort residences, a 90,000-square-foot retail village, an 18-hole Tom Weiskopf golf course, clubhouse, spa and cottage-style visitor accommodations.

(There’s not a word about any protest, lawsuit, or contested case hearings over THIS development.  Why?  It’s an A&B project and A&B owns the Sierra Club etal via the multi-million dollar contributions of the Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation.  Eco-activists are organized as a competitive advantage or A&B and Grove Farm.)

COMPARE: Ooma project returns to Land Use Commission

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Rep. Djou calls for free trade with Philippines  

U.S. Rep. Charles Djou, R-Hawaii, is calling for negotiations on a free trade agreement between the United States and the Philippines.

Djou has introduced a nonbinding resolution requesting trade talks between the two countries that have long-held economic, military, cultural and social ties.

The legislation is Djou's first since winning his seat May 22.

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Acting Gov. Concerned Over Inmate Deaths

"If the reason is they are not doing their job we are going to have to take some legal action and make sure things are changed and if that means we are going to have to change the keeper then we are going to have to change the keeper," said Aiona.

Two Hawaii inmates at Saguro were indicted in May on murder charges for Nunuha's death.

Aiona said his goal is to end the state's practice of sending Hawaii inmates to privately run prisons on the Mainland because of overcrowding there.

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Sen. Inouye marks a milestone  

Sen. Daniel Inouye is now the second longest serving Senator in U.S. history, eclipsing former Sen. Strom Thurmond on Friday.  Sen. Inouye, who was sworn into office in 1963, was honored today on the senate floor.

SA: Inouye honored as 2nd longest-serving senator

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Meth ads may be changing attitudes

WAILUKU - More Hawaii teens and young adults are wary of trying crystal methamphetamine, according to a survey by the Hawaii Meth Project.

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Kaneohe car dealer is charged over laundering pimps' money

The IRS said an undercover IRS special agent posing as a pimp later recorded Bartenstein telling the agent he knew other pimps and has sold them cars without revealing their identities or reporting the cash transactions to authorities.

According to a transcript of the recording, Bartenstein told the agent he can register the vehicle in somebody else's name and list himself as a lien holder to prevent the government from seizing it.

The IRS said the agent paid $40,000 cash to buy a truck from Bartenstein, who then registered the vehicle under a fictitious name.

(What a scam.)

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Hawaii Hates Science, Tells Thirty Meter Telescope to Go to Chile

Caught sight of this editorial in the Star-Advertiser from Nelson Ho, co-chair of the Sierra Club’s Mauna Kea Issues Committee. He’s opposed to Caltech’s Thirty Meter Telescope project, to be built on the summit of Mauna Kea, and thinks the project should be sent to Chile instead. I can’t think of a more obvious example of Hawaii’s anti-science, anti-progress, anti-Mainland attitude than Ho’s rant….

Why is it that the only people we ever hear from in this state are the ones who shout “No!” to everything? Hawaii could be a part of something larger than itself with a project like this, could be proud of the part it plays in the story of how humanity figured out the heavens. Instead, we get the angry shouts of protestors who want us to stay small, silent and insignificant.  (And who want their $50M a year ‘settlement’.)

(What a scam.)

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ERA Carbon Offsets Ltd. Signs MOU With McCandless Ranch to Develop Hawaiian Carbon Offset Projects

Under the terms of the MOU, both parties agree to cooperate towards preserving and restoring Hawaii's biological carbon sinks, through Improved Forest Management (IFM), Avoided Deforestation (AD) and Avoided Conversion (AC) types of carbon offset projects.

For each project, ERA will provide financing for direct offset project costs and be responsible for preparing a Project Design Document (PDD) in accordance with an approved methodology and standard.

Sales and marketing of the carbon credits generated through co-operative ERA-MCR projects will be initiated by ERA upon formal approval of a PDD. Net revenues derived from the sale of carbon credits will be shared between ERA and MCR

(What a scam.)

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PUC OKs Hawaiian Electric's test of biofuel blends

HONOLULU (AP) - The state Public Utilities Commission has given Hawaiian Electric Co. permission to test biofuel blends in a 90-megawatt steam turbine generating unit at the Kahe power plant that currently uses low sulfur fuel oil.

"This test is part of our continuing effort to switch Hawaii from 'black' fuel to 'green' fuel for electricity and to encourage an agricultural energy industry here to supply a significant part of our energy," Robbie Alm, Hawaiian Electric executive vice president, said Tuesday.

(What a scam.)

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Molokai Dispatch: Undersea Cable Moving Forward

The undersea cable would likely run from Kaneohe on Oahu to Ilio Point on Molokai, according to the Ocean Floor Survey Final Report. That report was conducted last year by the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism and the University of Hawaii Manoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology.
From Ilio Point, the cable would run parallel to the west Molokai shore, where it would stay below the reef edge. The cable would then run from the southwestern Molokai shore toward Lanai.

REALITY: Wind Energy's Ghosts

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Windmill sought for Waikoloa area

The proposed wind turbine is 155 feet tall and would be located on open zoned land off Waikoloa Road, between milemarkers four and five, according to the application. The location is about 300 feet lower than the village, and the applicants wrote they believe the turbine will not be visible from the village.

REALITY: Wind Energy's Ghosts

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County again considers hauling trash to Kona  

Hamakua Councilman Dominic Yagong said further studies aren't needed. The county recently paid consultant CH2MHill $525,000 to create the Integrated Resources and Solid Waste Management Plan, a five- or 10-year plan required by state law.
A March 2009 report within the plan put the per-ton cost of trucking Hilo's garbage to the West Hawaii landfill in Puuanahulu at $82, compared to $69-$73 a ton to expand the Hilo landfill into adjacent quarries.
"This has been studied to death," Yagong said. "It's not like we're coming up with something brand new. This is just a waste of time and money."

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Kauai Volunteers help finish new dock

Fraser said the dock is a collaborative effort between the state, which funded the lumber and materials for the dock, American Marine, which did the structure work, and community volunteers who helped with the finish work.

There were more volunteers helping lay out the planking for the dock than there were state and American Marine personnel Tuesday morning.

(State contracting is so convoluted it is easier to just do it yourself.)

RELATED:  Rush Limbaugh salutes Kauai volunteer bridge builders

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