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Saturday, May 15, 2021
May 15, 2021 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 2:33 PM :: 2814 Views

Hawaii Juvenile COVID Cases Surging

Maui Democrats to Choose From Six Applicants for Senate Dist 7 Seat

Everyone wants affordable housing

Now is the time to ‘get real’ about Hawaii’s future

Honolulu Rail: 27 Alternatives to Plan A?

Hacking for Defense: Marines Partner with University of Hawaii Students

TMT satisfies initiation of work/construction permit requirement

Rep Ward: "It's clearly time to open up the State Capitol"

Surprise: Green Energy is Oil (and Electricity will Cost 2-3 Times More)

SA Editorial: … an unusually harsh war of words between the state Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and Hawaiian Electric highlighted the difficulties ahead for the state’s goal of reaching 100% renewable energy generation by 2045.

To make up for the loss of AES-generated power — about 20% of Oahu’s supply — Hawaiian Electric intends to install a new 185-MW lithium- ion battery project with 565 megawatt-hours of storage on industrial land in Kapolei. The Kapolei Energy Storage (KES) project, to be completed in June 2022, would provide reliable backup energy to the grid and, in the long run, save customers money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

But here’s the catch: In the near term at least, the big battery is expected to be charged primarily with fossil fuels like oil, which costs a lot more than coal or renewables — two to three times more, by some estimates.

In fact, yearlong delays in a number of Hawaiian Electric’s big solar energy/battery storage projects could force the company to open the spigot on oil temporarily to make up for the loss of coal.

All this has left the PUC and its chairman, James Griffin, fuming.

“Every single project and program that runs through this department is stuck in the slow lane,” Griffin said during a status conference on KES in March. “Every single one.” …

read … Power players reset energy pact

'Follow the Science:' Restaurant Owners Want Governor to Relax Mask, Distance Restrictions

KITV: … Greg Maples, Chairman of the Hawaii Restaurant Association, wants Governor David Ige to relax mask and distancing restrictions as consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. …

HNN: Mixed messaging about masks puts Hawaii businesses at center of controversy

read … 'Follow the Science:' Restaurant Owners Want Governor to Relax Mask, Distance Restrictions

Backlog of DUI cases cleared using plea deals which wipe criminal record

HNN: … A plan to clear hundreds of DUI cases amid the COVID-19 court closures has resulted in 1,116 plea deals in Honolulu.

The offers were not allowed ahead of the pandemic, but when the courts shut down last year the backlog ballooned to 900.

“Most of these cases were from 2018, 2019 and 2020 which were pending trial as of January first of this year and that’s because there had been no trials for nine months last year,” said Florence Nakakuni, head of the misdemeanor division at the Honolulu Prosecutor’s office.

Add to that, more than 200 additional arrests this year.

In February, prosecutors, defense attorneys, and leaders at Mothers Against Drunk Driving finalized the plan for first time offenders.

So many defendants were interested, the program was only supposed to last one month but was extended through May….

The defendant has to pay fines, stay out of trouble for one year, and take driving and substance abuse classes to get the DUI wiped from their record.

They also cannot drive unless they get an interlock device.

If the person is arrested again for DUI during the one year probation period, the deal is revoked….

read … Backlog of DUI cases cleared using plea deals, but those won’t be around for much longer

HPD arrests suspect in connection with setting a homeless man on fire

HNN: … Honolulu police arrested a man Friday night for second-degree attempted murder for allegedly setting a homeless man on fire in Downtown Honolulu.  The Honolulu Police Department said the 45-year-old suspect was arrested in connection to Wednesday’s attack on a homeless man, who was intentionally set on fire….

read … HPD arrests suspect in connection with setting a homeless man on fire

NYT: A Police Shooting in Hawaii Has South Africans Demanding Justice

NYT: … A Black man from South Africa was shot and killed in an encounter with the police in his adopted home, Hawaii. His countrymen want answers. ….

read … A Police Shooting in Hawaii Has South Africans Demanding Justice

Honolulu poised to pay $1M settlement for 2017 HPD fatal shooting of burglar

KHON: … Honolulu officers were called to Malaekahana Beach after reports of a stolen truck, which then turned into an officer-involved shooting. Police say the officer, named in the lawsuit as Scott Valdez, fired in self-defense.

“Upon arrival, an officer located the vehicle and ordered the driver to stop. In an attempt to flee, the vehicle driver struck the officer,” said HPD assistant chief Janet Crotteau.

The driver was 29-year-old Cameron Johnson, who died at the hospital. His mother sued the City and the officer. Attorney Michael Green says (the usual) ….

2017: Man sought after officer-involved shooting was on work furlough

KITV: Johnson's criminal record dates back to 2014.  Last year, he was found guilty on both robbery and burglary charges.

read … Honolulu poised to pay $1M settlement for 2017 HPD fatal shooting

One Sykap brother assigned a July court date, the other still on the loose

KITV: … Police are looking for a third Sykap brother, 21-year-old Maruo. He's charged with assault and robbery in two separate incidents. …

read … One Sykap brother assigned a July court date, the other still on the loose

Honolulu Police Department’s robotic dog, Spot, used to check homeless for COVID

SA: … The controversial robotic dog that the Honolulu Police Department purchased with federal relief funds last year will be useful for years, the department said.

Known as Spot, the robot HPD bought from Boston Dynamics has been used primarily to get body temperature checks for homeless individuals participating in HPD’s Provisional Outdoor Screening and Triage, or POST, program at Keehi Lagoon….

prior to Spot, police officers would have to do face-to-face interviews with POST participants that last about 20 minutes, according to O’Neal.

At the time of the purchase, when less was known about the coronavirus and prior to the development of COVID-19 vaccines, temperature scans and intake interviews appeared to be a riskier task for police officers, according to O’Neal, who did the research on Spot when HPD was deciding how to spend federal money allocated to it….

POST is an offshoot of the city’s Homeless Outreach and Navigation for Unsheltered Persons, or HONU, which this week opened a location in Wahiawa. Tsuneyoshi said there aren’t any plans to use Spot at that location.  (It might get stolen and stripped for copper.)

read … Honolulu Police Department’s robotic dog, Spot, is expected to have multiple uses in the future

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