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Thursday, July 16, 2020
July 16, 2020 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:56 PM :: 2924 Views

Former HPD Officer Gets Four Years Prison--Forced Two Suspects to Lick or Dunk Toilet

Feds: Miske Could Get Death Penalty

COVID Count: 29 new cases out of 1,830 tests

COVID Count 19 new cases out of 1,817 tests

Hawaii: Only 45% of Adults Working

Hawaii Highest Market Rent for 2br Apartment

Hawaii Just Decided to Kill off Tourism Industry

SA … Intentionally or not, Hawaii may have just reached a crossroads in planning for its economic future. Its reliance on its bedrock visitor industry has been shaken to the core by the global coronavirus pandemic, and there may need to be a redeployent of its workforce.

This signal came down on Monday, when Gov. David Ige announced he was delaying for a month the high-stakes plan to start a gradual reboot of the tourism industry, which had been slated to launch Aug. 1….

the testing-and-waiver had been seen as a key component in “risk mitigation,” allowing for a gradual but significant increase in arrivals.

And when that part got postponed, business owners and employees, especially those most closely allied with the tourism industry, were deeply worried, some with fading prospects for survival.

It now means at least one month more of paying bills just to stay afloat. A number of them will decide they don’t believe business will ramp up to a level that can sustain them. Almost certainly, they will close for good. Some already have….

the Paycheck Protection Program will end Aug. 8….

essential now are fresh ideas about economic directions for the state…

SA: Reality of military brings real dollars

read .. Editorial: Aid must emerge after tourism delay

COVID Tests at Airport Starting Aug 1

SA: … Starting Aug. 1, “we’re going to be taking that to the next level,” Connors said. “When you arrive, you’re going to get your temperature thermal scanning when you get off the airplane” along with other verifications.

Passengers with temperatures above 100.4 degrees will be directed to “secondary screening” areas where they will be offered a voluntary test for COVID-19, said Dr. Sarah Park, the state’s Health Department epidemiologist….

SA: State not ready yet for more visitors, health officials say

read … Some state senators blast reopening plans

Hawaii County Indictment accuses retired police officer of intimidating witness

HTH: … A former Hawaii Police Department officer already charged with drug and conspiracy offenses was indicted for intimidating a witness in two high-profile criminal cases.

Retired Hilo Vice Detective Brian K. Miller was indicted Wednesday by a Kona grand jury on charges of intimidating a witness, retaliating against a witness, witness tampering, second-degree terroristic threatening and harassment stemming from a May 14 incident.

According to the indictment, Miller allegedly intimidated, threatened and/or retaliated against a female witness in a 2019 drug and conspiracy case against himself and in a separate 2019 case filed against another former police officer, Chadwick Fukui, and four civilians related to an illegal gambling operation. The harassment charge lists a male victim but does not state the offense is related to any criminal proceeding….

Miller is awaiting trial on charges stemming from a May 2019 indictment for allegedly stealing cocaine from a police evidence locker in Hilo in May 2016.

Miller — who’s also accused of tipping off Triple 7 arcade owners Lance and Stacey Yamada and two others about an Aug. 10, 2017, gambling raid and engaging in a conspiracy to hide or destroy gambling devices — is charged with first-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, second- and fourth-degree theft, obstructing government operations, two counts of second-degree hindering prosecution and four counts of tampering with physical evidence….

In the other 2019 case, the Yamada brothers pleaded not guilty to criminal conspiracy to hinder prosecution and two counts of tampering with physical evidence, all misdemeanors. Co-defendants Ivar Kaluhikaua and David Colon entered not guilty pleas to second-degree hindering prosecution and tampering with physical evidence, all misdemeanors.

Fukui, a retired police captain who once commanded the Hilo Criminal Investigations Division and worked as an investigator for the county prosecutor after his 2006 retirement, was charged with second-degree hindering prosecution and tampering with physical evidence. Those charges were dismissed in December and refiled last month, along with an additional charge of obstructing government operations….

KITV: Retired Hilo detective arrested following grand jury indictment

read … Indictment accuses retired police officer of intimidating witness

SB2139 Dead – Would have Rigged Senate Special Election

SA: … Just last week, the Star-Advertiser reported on one of the latest examples of old-time politics based on backroom dealings. With no public notice, under pressure to adjourn — and without having passed many important measures beneficial to the common good, such as living wage, automatic voter registration, more voter service centers — state Rep. Chris Lee, House Judiciary Committee chairman, took the time to quietly insert language into Senate Bill 2139 to allow a candidate to pull out of a race after the normal deadline to withdraw, and then run to fill an unexpected midterm vacancy.

Common Cause Hawaii voiced strenuous opposition to this last-minute, non-transparent attempt to move this changed bill. Fortunately, the Senate, with 16 “no” votes, rejected the secretly amended bill….

July 10, 2020: Bill would change election laws to make Rep. Takayama eligible to run for Sen. Harimoto’s seat

SB2139: Text, Status

read … Column: Common Cause, transparency are vital to good government

TMT construction on hold until after the new year, official says

SA: … One year after protesters stopped the Thirty Meter Telescope for a second time, a top official with the TMT organization said today that the project’s commitment to Hawaii remains as strong as ever but that construction will be delayed at least through the winter and maybe longer.

Gordon Squires, TMT vice president of external relations, said the coronavirus pandemic is helping to complicate the logistics of constructing the $2.4 billion cutting-edge telescope.

In optimal times, it takes a minimum of three months to gear up for the start of construction, he said. But these are not optimal times, and bringing in equipment and people from the mainland presents challenges that could double the preparation time, he said.

Squires said in all likelihood construction couldn’t begin until after winter at the earliest but that depends on the pandemic and other factors.

Those other factors include the largely Native Hawaiian opposition and how any demonstrations might be handled by government officials. There may be a new mayor of Hawaii island by the new year….

Related: VIDEO: TMT Remains Committed to Finding a Way Forward in Hawaii

HTH: TMT forges ahead despite pandemic; opponents keeping close eye on project

KITV: TMT opponents blocked access to construction sites atop Mauna Kea one year ago

HNN: UH telescope atop Mauna Kea to get a big upgrade as it turns 50

AP: Giant Hawaii Telescope Builders Say No Construction This Year Due to Coronavirus Pandemic

read … TMT construction on hold until after the new year, official says

Big Island Ballots Arrive in Mailboxes

HTH: … A glitch in the process means some voters who updated their voter registration information after July 9 might get two ballots in the mail — the original ballot and then a corrected one. The original ballot has been invalidated, so the voter needs to send in the ballot with the updated voter registration information, Nakamoto said.

Nakamoto said the Elections Division will contact those voters to explain the process. It was not immediately known how many voters changed their registration information late.

“The voter must vote on the second ballot. If they mail in the first ballot that ballot will not be validated and will not get processed for counting,” she said. “I would like voters to know that this is not an error; it is because they updated their information after July 9.”

County voter registration of 111,848 is down so far from the 113,083 registered to vote in the 2016 primary, the most recent presidential election year, when registration is typically higher. The state Office of Elections was still compiling numbers Wednesday and couldn’t immediately provide a statewide count.

Voter registration ended July 9, but same-day voter registration will begin July 27 at voter service centers.

Meanwhile, a more than 60-year-old Hawaii tradition is being sidelined by COVID-19. This year, there will be no traditional Grand Rally, where the public and the Democratic Party faithful scoop up chili and rice, munch musubi and hot dogs and cheer on their federal, state and local candidates in a statewide primary eve pep rally at Mooheau Bandstand in Hilo….

read … ELECTION 2020: County battles rumors as ballots arrive at mailboxes

Tourists Could Soon Have To Pay More To Visit Hawaii Parks

CB: … But residents will be able to enter and park for free under a state plan awaiting final approval….

read … Tourists Could Soon Have To Pay More To Visit Hawaii Parks

Use Of Force Or ‘Response To Resistance’? Police Policy Change Considered

CB: … “Maybe you shouldn’t try to sugarcoat what it really is,” one Honolulu Police Commissioner said….The committee is seeking public input via You may also mail or drop off written comments at 1060 Richards St., Suite 170, Honolulu, HI 96813….

read … Use Of Force Or ‘Response To Resistance’? Police Policy Change Considered

ACLU Busted Cherry Picking Data

SA: … Based on ACLU’s own reporting, relative to white people Honolulu police were 30 times more likely to arrest a Black or Samoan person for violating emergency orders during the pandemic.

Homeless people were 55 times more likely to be arrested than housed people were, it reported.

Shannon Alivado, the commission’s chairwoman, said more information should be included to make an accurate analysis of potential disparities.

She pointed to the roughly 240 arrests HPR and ACLU used as data points in their reporting and said that the thousands of citations handed out by HPD during Hawaii’s outbreak would have provided a clearer picture.

“What if … it’s actually whites or Japanese (people) … receiving the highest citations?” Alivado told the Star-Advertiser. “We don’t know that because the information is not there.”

She said that HPD had reported, as of July 1, 3,500 citations and 8,900 park closure warnings for violations of Ige’s March 27 stay-at-home orders….

July 6, 2020: ACLU: Hawaii COVID Enforcement Racist

(Solution: Police need to beat up some white people and Japanese.  ACLU should count the beatings to certify racial equity.) 

read … Commission questions reports of disparity in stay-at-home arrests

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