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Saturday, October 7, 2023
October 7, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:43 PM :: 2817 Views

Pave way for office buildings to be converted into housing

Allow owner-occupants of Residential A homes to apply for missed property tax relief

Luxury Beliefs and Radical Chic: Maui Council votes 7-2 to urge governor to reinstate former official who denied water for firefighting

SA: … The Council, by a 7-2 vote, approved a resolution urging Gov. Josh Green “to uphold the Constitution of the State of Hawai‘i and the State Water Code by immediately reinstating Marvin Kaleo Manuel.”

The resolution was introduced by Molokai Council Member Keani Rawlins- Fernandez, who suggested that Green was responsible for transferring Manuel and that the governor was doing the bidding of developers who want to control the water.

(REALITY: The more ‘radical chic’ Maui becomes, the pricier its property becomes, therefore it is Keani Rawlins-Fernandez who is doing the bidding of developers.)

Rawlins-Fernandez, a Native Hawaiian, grew emotional and began to sob as she spoke to her fellow Council members.

“I can’t stop crying,” she said through tears. “We’ve just had so much taken away that sometimes you forget how numb you have to force yourself to be just to function.”

(IQ Test: Do you understand she’s not crying about the fire?)

Council member Shane Sinenci praised Manuel for his understanding of the Public Trust Doctrine and the State Water Code and the responsibility to uphold them. He said Manuel has worked hard to maintain stream flow standards and sustainable yields.

“Unfortunately, this has put a target on him because developers want as much water as they can get,” he said. “Developer needs are in direct opposition to the public trust when they demand more water than is allocated to them.” …

Council member Tamara Paltin also praised Manuel, saying he could do any job and excel at it.

(CLUE: Paltin ‘represents’ Lahaina.)

Manuel, she said, didn’t deserve the death threats he received following the Lahaina fire and the stories accusing him of delaying the water. Paltin blamed Green, saying he “fanned the flames” that led to the death threats.

A handful of speakers from the public supported the resolution, including veteran activist Walter Ritte of Molokai, who spoke on video….

Council Chair Alice Lee joined Yuki Lei Sugimora in voting against the resolution.

“I believe the governor has a right to decide on his own departmental staff and organization,” Lee said….

(Reality: The more Maui looks ‘radical chic’, the pricier its resorts become.)

The Classic: Radical Chic: That Party at Lenny’s (nymag.com)

Modern Iteration: Luxury beliefs “ideas and opinions that confer status on the rich at very little cost, while taking a toll on the lower class.”

Meanwhile: Water systems on Maui lack backup generators

read … Maui Council urges governor to reinstate former water official

Lahaina Fire: What does it take to get 60 Homeless to Accept Shelter?

MN: … In the days after he spent three hours treading water off Front Street as a wildfire raged through Lahaina town, Bill Jackson kept having nightmares.

“I didn’t sleep for about two or three days because I was going to have nightmares,” he said.

Then he met the health care workers at Pu’uhonua o Nene who sat with him, encouraged him and helped him start to work through his trauma.

“It’s got me to a point where I don’t think I’ve ever, just in the last couple days, have never felt so good. It got rid of my nightmares,” Jackson said Friday. “The more life they speak into me, the more I now sleep all night. … I still have a lot of unresolved issues that I’m working on and stuff. But I’m just so grateful of everybody here.”

Jackson is among the estimated 60 people living at Pu’uhonua o Nene, a temporary shelter of military-grade tents housing air-conditioned sleeping quarters, dining space, medical facilities and hot showers on a gravel-lined parcel of once-vacant brush at the corner of Hana Highway and Mayor Elmer Cravalho Way. The shelter opened on Sept. 29 for Maui wildfire survivors who were houseless before the fire and were not covered under shelter eligibility requirements because they did not lose a physical structure. The effort is a partnership between the state and the nonprofit Project Vision Hawai’i, a mobile health and social services provider….

(CLUE: Now you know what it takes to get the homeless to accept shelter.)

“People don’t realize when you’re homeless, all you want to do is take care of that next hour, that next hour, and years go by and you don’t accomplish anything,” he said. “I come from the adage that if you take care of their needs, you can minister to their potential. So now they’re taking care of everybody’s needs here. They don’t realize it yet, but now they’ve gone from, ‘Where can I get some dope?’ to ‘Man, I think I’m going to start doing some job interviews.’ … They realize how grateful they are, but they don’t realize the concept of ‘Wow, my needs are taken care of, now I can go do something.'”…

(CLUE: And all it took was the entire town burning down around them.)

CB: Maui's New Tent Shelter Offers Second Chance To Homeless Fire Survivors And Others - Honolulu Civil Beat

SA: Homeless shelter for Lahaina fire survivors filling up | Honolulu Star-Advertiser (staradvertiser.com)

read … New shelter offers services to houseless fire survivors

Hawaii jump in fentanyl-related deaths

KHON: … Between 2021 and 2022 there has been a jump in fentanyl-related deaths in the state from 48 to 79, officials said there are no signs fentanyl overdoses will slow down this year. …HPD alone has recovered over 7,000 fentanyl-laced pills and nearly 1,000 grams this year ….

HNN: Fentanyl overdoses are hitting every Hawaii community, on every island

read … More public awareness needed to combat Hawaii’s fentanyl problem

Bought and Paid for by Big Tobacco: Two Honolulu Council members push anti-vaping Bill 46

SA: …  Two Honolulu City Council members who introduced Bill 46 to ban flavored tobacco products to protect Oahu’s youth responded to questions over their acceptance of political campaign contributions from tobacco industry lobbyists….

Passing on a 6-3 Council vote Wednesday, the measure bans such products at the point of sale for minors but includes exemptions for specific tobacco-related products — namely hookahs, premium cigars and loose-leaf and shisha tobaccos.

(REALITY: Anti-Vaping legislation is supportive of the tobacco industry.)

Although Council Chair Tommy Waters and Council member Matt Weyer sponsored this latest anti- tobacco legislation, according to the Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission, both received contributions from local lobbyists with ties to major tobacco companies.

And those lobbyists reportedly sought further exemptions within Bill 46.

In April 2022, Weyer received a $500 political contribution from Ross Yamasaki, a lobbyist who works for Altria Client Serv­ices LLC, connected to tobacco companies Philip Morris USA Inc., a leading cigarette manufacturer, and John Middleton Co., which manufactures cigars and pipe tobacco.

Similarly, in April 2022, Weyer received a $500 political contribution from Bruce A. Coppa, a lobbyist who works for Capitol Consultants of Hawaii LLC. Ac­cording to the Campaign Spending Commission, from January 2021 to December 2022, Coppa and his firm represented Reynolds American Inc., the U.S. parent company of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., American Snuff Co. and Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co., among others.

SA: Editorial: Veto City Council’s flawed tobacco bill

read … 2 Honolulu City Council members respond to Big Tobacco contributions

Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii asks businesses for feedback on regulations

Are you a business owner? If so, the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii would like to hear from you.

In particular, the Chamber wants to hear from local entrepreneurs about what laws and policies they would like to see changed to foster economic growth and innovation.

The Chamber says survey responses will be "analyzed and compiled to develop Blueprint Hawaii 2030, a long term economic strategy to improve the state's business climate."

Interested in taking the survey? You can do so here.

Lahaina Fire News:

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