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Wednesday, November 23, 2022
November 23, 2022 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 2:06 PM :: 1544 Views

Carpenters Union Director Heads List of Green Appointees

IBEW Cheers Ahakuelo Convictions

Ala Wai: Corps of Engineers, City Attempt to Bamboozle Public Again

Displaced Philadelphia Woman Uses Housing Voucher to Live in Hawaii

'If Hawaii wants more homes, it might just have to build them'

Hawaii: Critically Low Lung Cancer Screening Rates Reveal Opportunity to Save More Lives

'Low Wind Resources': Another Conservation Alert for Big Island

Hawaii Holiday Tourism Down 35%

SA: … “This is one of the weakest festive seasons in Hawaii that we’ve seen — we’re tracking down 35% in 2022 from where we were during the festive period in 2019,” Richards said. “In comparison, the festive season during the same period is up 25% for the Caribbean, 49% for Mexico and 64% for Europe. It’s even up 2% for the mainland.”

Jerry Gibson, who leads the Hawaii Hotel Alliance, described Hawaii’s booking pace as “not great” for the rest of the calendar year, with some of the softness expected to carry into 2023. Gibson said other than at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the last time he recalls such a dismal festive season was during the 2007-2008 financial crisis….

read … Thanksgiving travel bustling, but Hawaii eyeing weak festive season

What About the Meth? Green, Blangiardi blame Homelessness on TVRs and Evictions 

SA: … Gov.-elect Josh Green and Mayor Rick Blangiardi on Tuesday asked the owners of thousands of illegal Oahu rental units to help ease the island’s affordable housing and homeless crises by renting to local families instead of tourists as both named new housing directors to lead state and city housing efforts.

“If you’ve been part of an illegal Airbnb … make that decision now to rent to a local family,” Green said. “Don’t wait for us to enforce things.” …

Other funds will be used to help families with rent or utility payments to keep them from becoming homeless, or to get newly homeless families back into housing, Catalani said.

The grant is the largest ever for Family Promise of Hawai‘i and comes from the Bezos Day 1 Families Fund, which was created in 2018 by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.

The need to help homeless families and those at risk of becoming homeless is rising as the number of landlords and tenants in mediation declines….

(CLUE: Homelessness is about drugs, not evictions and TVRs.)

read … Green, Blangiardi team up on housing push

Hundreds Of Honolulu Residential High Rises Fail To Meet ‘Acceptable’ Fire Safety Standards

CB: … More than 281 high-rise residential buildings in Honolulu have failed to pass a safety evaluation required by the city and are at greater risk from fire than new buildings, according to an analysis provided by the Honolulu Fire Department to the City Council this month.

Only 21 of the buildings that were studied have an “acceptable” life safety score, according to fire department officials.

Tens of thousands of Honolulu residents live in these problematic buildings.

None of the 302 buildings that were evaluated have water sprinklers, which have been customary in new high-rise office buildings on the mainland for almost a century. In Hawaii, fire sprinklers have only been required in high-rise buildings since 1975 but much of the housing stock was built before then and was grandfathered in under the old rules….

PDF: Report

read … Hundreds Of Honolulu Residential High Rises Fail To Meet ‘Acceptable’ Fire Safety Standards

Hundreds apply for permits to carry a concealed weapon, but some question rules

HNN: … some gun enthusiasts say the new conceal carry rules are too restrictive and will likely be challenged in court.

They say the mental evaluation alone could cost anywhere from $300 to $500.

“It’s far beyond what any other state has,” said Andrew Namiki Roberts, of the Hawaii Firearms Coalition.

“Most states, you’re paying 50 to $100, and you’re getting a license that’s five to 10 years long. Most places, it’s part of your driver’s license, or it’s a license you go to get one time they give it to you, and then to renew it.”

The new rules come as the city is considering location restrictions for concealed weapons. A bill that would strictly control where concealed firearms can be carried will be heard by the City Council next Tuesday….

SA: Rules for concealed-carry weapon license are finalized

read … Hundreds apply for permits to carry a concealed weapon, but some question rules

Health Department now involved in lead probe at Oahu’s only public shooting range

HNN: … In the meantime, Oahu gun owners are still without a public range.

“It feels like we have an uphill battle here,” said gun enthusiast Spencer Hisatake.

Some say they’re unsure the city will do what’s necessary to reopen the complex.

“We don’t really have a vote of confidence that the government is going to do the right thing,” Hisatake said.

The city has said its goal is to reopen the range. But it doesn’t have a timeline for when it could happen.

HNN has asked officials at the Honolulu Parks Department on multiple occasions what kind of on-site testing will be conducted and when it’s expected to start. So far, there has been no answer ….

read … Health Department now involved in lead probe at Oahu’s only public shooting range

Rail work severely disrupts local business

SA: … The last time contractor Nan Inc. started relocating utilities on Dillingham a few years ago, before it was shut down for lack of permits, it repeatedly blocked access to our lot, preventing our 80-plus-year-old customers from accessing our services for vans, ramps, lifts and hand controls. I, too, am disabled and was prevented multiple times from accessing the business my husband and I own.

We have been in business for 35 years, and four years ago bought a new lot on Mokauea Street to avoid the Dillingham rail mess. However, the city, despite the mayor’s best efforts, took nearly three years to give us building permits. Now we face huge increased construction costs due to inflation and high interest rates to finance our new building. We also have to wrangle with the bulky items and household rubbish that are continually dumped in front of our properties, being faced with city fines if we don’t.

Joey Manahan and other staff from the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) came by to assess our situation a couple of weeks ago. Nan did not come. It has to bury a high voltage and regular power line in our sidewalk. This will render half of our inventory parking spaces unusable and in high probability, will shut down our van sales lot for years ….

read … Rail work severely disrupts local business

Hate Crimes And Hate Groups In Hawaii

CB: … When I first wrote about hate groups in Hawaii, back in 2016, the Southern Poverty Law Center reported that Hawaii and Alaska were the only states with no organized hate groups. But there were 842 nationwide.

Three years later, SPLC flagged five hate groups in our islands: one white nationalist, two black nationalist and two categorized under “general hate.” One of those groups was the Proud Boys, whose president at the time was Nick Ochs, a UH journalism student who, in September of this year, agreed to a plea deal for his involvement in the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots.

Today, three years later, SPLC tracked 733 hate groups across the U.S., including four in Hawaii: the Proud Boys, Great Millstone, Israel United In Christ and Sure Foundation Baptist Church.

The first three groups are categorized as general hate groups, meaning that they “peddle a combination of well-known hate and conspiracy theories, in addition to unique bigotries that are not easily categorized.” Some of theses groups “profit off their bigotry” by selling hate materials from the white supremacist movement.

As for that fourth group, the Sure Foundation Baptist Church is described by the SPLC as an anti-LGBTQ group in Kaneohe. For its part, the Sure Foundation Baptist Church’s Oahu website says it’s “an independent, fundamental, King James only, soul-winning, and family integrated Church. … We believe in hard preaching to help keep the congregation from sin and to motivate/exhort them to please the Lord.”

A person who answered the phone number listed on the group’s Facebook page said I had the wrong number. I wanted to ask whether the church is aligned with the Sure Foundation Baptist Church led by Pastor Aaron Thompson of Vancouver, Wash.

Thompson has been described by Metro Weekly as “using anti-gay slurs while preaching the Bible” and has made “homophobic statements and called for the death of LGBTQ people.”

And SPLC reported in 2019 that Thompson was a speaker at a “Make America Straight Again” conference described as intended to move beyond “stock fallacies and hate-filled rhetoric and call for the government to begin rounding up and executing homosexuals.” ….

read … Hate Crimes And Hate Groups In The Land Of Aloha

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