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Saturday, June 10, 2023
June 10, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:33 PM :: 2518 Views

Oahu Family Court Judge Jessi L. K. Hall seeks another term as Judge

DelaCruz uses HIEMA in First Responder Campus Dog n Pony Show

Council Raises? Time to work for a living

Maui $283M GE Tax Hike will hurt for ten years before any benefits are seen

MN: … Maui County could have seen around $283 million in added income if it had followed other counties four years ago in adding its own surcharge to the state’s general excise tax, according to tax officials’ estimates.

But in 2019, the county opted not to impose a surcharge of up to 0.5 percent on top of the state’s 4 percent general excise tax, making it the only one in the state not to do so. And the window to add on the surcharge — which could fund housing infrastructure, sewer and water systems — closed.

But last week, Gov. Josh Green signed a bill into law that reopens that possibility.

That’s why Maui County Council members are now considering a bill that would add the surcharge, which would affect the cost of goods and services ranging from groceries to hair cuts to medical services throughout Maui County. And while some welcome the additional funding, others are concerned about the burden on residents.

Kihei resident Tom Croly said the tax “affects everybody.”

“A half percent may not sound like much, but the big issue today is inflation. And let’s be clear — a half percent additional GET is an immediate half percent inflation on everything that everyone buys,” Croly said Friday in public testimony to the council’s Budget, Finance and Economic Development Committee, which is considering the bill.

Croly said he supports building infrastructure for affordable housing, “but I don’t think this method is the right way to go about it.”

“I think it will at least initially for 10 years or more hurt the people that it is trying to help,” he said, noting that the infrastructure is not going to be realized for a “good long period.”

(CLUE: In the real world, developers borrow money to install infrastructure and build units.  Then the sell the units to repay the loan.)

Physical therapist Eric Rohozinski said that the state’s overall GET, which medical providers already have to pay, is keeping doctors from settling and staying in the state and is already a burden at its current level.

“For the last 33 years I’ve been practicing, I have to pay GET tax, but my colleagues in the Mainland don’t pay that,” he said.

He said he has seen opportunities for local medical professionals to stay, but they don’t because of the taxes.

“This tax may be enough to break some of us in private practice,” he said.... 

KITV: Bill 49 will have its hearing in council on Tuesday June 20th.

read … Tax could fund projects, but some worry about cost

Two Years and Counting: DPP ePlans Slow Permitting Even More

HNN: … The DPP hopes removing the paper in “paperwork” will streamline the process.

But some construction professionals say they’re seeing more delays with the new ePlans system because they can’t update project plans until all agencies weigh in on the platform.

For small business owners in Honolulu, waiting one to two years for a permit comes at a high cost.

“Once you sign the lease, you have to pay rent. And if you’re paying about $5,000, $10,000, $20,000 rent, it’s very simple. It costs me additional $100,000 to $200,000 extra for that delay,” said L&L Hawaiian Barbecue founder and owner Eddie Flores, who added that it used to take three months for a permit….

read … Small businesses cautiously optimistic amid city’s move to electronic permitting system

Ex-EMS head accused of cocaine-fueled domestic violence

SA: … An ex-director of the Honolulu Emergency Serv­ices Department and former first-team volleyball All- American was arrested June 3 for allegedly violating a temporary restraining order and damaging the property of a former romantic partner who accused him of cocaine-fueled physical abuse….

“For the past three years, I have been scared of the times Mark shows up and threatens me,” she wrote. “I need this harassment to stop.”

Things started going bad in 2017, she told the court, when Rigg would go into cocaine-fueled rages and rip the covers off her in a bout of “cocaine psychosis.” A judge granted her a six-month TRO….

Rigg’s retirement was effective Dec. 30, 2016, and his appointment would have ended Jan. 2, 2017, according to a city spokesperson.

While he worked for the city, between November 2017 and his separation from city service, Rigg racked up 18 criminal and traffic citations….

read … Ex-EMS head accused of cocaine-fueled domestic violence

HPD patrol officers to work 13-hour shifts but shorter workweek

KHON: … After more than 15 years of Honolulu Police officers working the same patrol schedule, patrol officers will be shifting to longer work days, but in return will be getting a four-day weekend.

This move comes as the department works to recruit more officers to the department, a change that will take effect on August 20….

HPD patrol officers will go from working five nine-hour days to working three days a week. Two of their workdays will be 13-and-a-half-hour long shifts, while on the third day, they will work a 13-hour day. …

read … HPD patrol officers to work 13-hour shifts but shorter workweek

City appears to have rescinded tax credits previously claimed for home at 91 Coelho Way

Ilind: …  A reader submitted a comment earlier this week questioning how James Hill, who holds title to the property at 91 Coelho Way, was allowed to benefit from a city tax credit, reducing the tax he had to pay on the home valued at over $4 million, to just $300 per year….

data for 2021 and 2022 reported on the city’s real property tax website.

For the 2021 tax year, it clearly shows two payments of $150 each were made, while the balance owed was covered by tax credits.

For the 2022 tax year, it appears to have been similar until an “adjustment” of $22,574.20 was made. That amount is the exact total of the previous tax credit applied to the two years.

So it appears city tax officials did follow up and rescind the previous tax credits.

The account is now listed as owing a balance of $22,574.20….

I have discussed the $215,000 in PPP loans Hall received in a prior post….

read … City appears to have rescinded tax credits previously claimed for home at 91 Coelho Way

Trump’s Guam Connection: Who Is Walt Nauta, the Other Person Indicted Along With Trump?

NYT: … Walt Nauta, the only other person indicted along with former President Donald J. Trump, has been serving as his personal aide after previously working for him in the White House.

A native of Guam, Mr. Nauta enlisted in the military at some point and was a military aide working as a White House valet while Mr. Trump was president.

The valets in the White House have unusual proximity to the commander in chief, encountering them at moments of vulnerability, including at meals and on foreign trips.

Mr. Trump and Mr. Nauta forged a bond during the Trump administration, and when the term ended, Mr. Nauta retired and went to go work for Mr. Trump personally.

He was one of the very few members of Mr. Trump’s post-presidential office when Mr. Trump first returned to private life at his club, Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach, Fla. There, Mr. Nauta resumed the kind of personal chores that he had helped Mr. Trump with while he was president.

Mr. Nauta has been seen as deeply loyal to Mr. Trump by other aides….

TA: The Stupidest Crimes Imaginable

read … Who Is Walt Nauta, the Other Person Indicted Along With Trump?

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