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Tuesday, October 10, 2023
October 10, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:47 PM :: 1901 Views

DLNR: Official Who Withheld Firefighting Water Gets Job Back

Hamas Attacks: Hawaii Sierra Club Cheers

Phantom water management area blocks affordable housing

Mayor: Lahaina to be Sprayed with Soil Stabilizer

DLNR Implementing 'Civil Resource Violation System'

9,000 Apply for Aid but Oprah and Rock Still Apologizing for $10M Lahaina Relief Effort

LAT: … Dwayne Johnson says he totally gets why people have criticized him and Oprah Winfrey for asking the public to donate to their Maui fund.

“When we first launched the fund, there was some backlash,” Johnson said in a video posted to his Instagram page on Sunday, after joking that he keeps “receipts.”

“I get it and I completely understand, and I could’ve been better — and next time I will be better.”

The People’s Champ said he remembers how it feels when money is tight, commenting, “I understand money ain’t falling out of the sky and it isn’t growing on trees. And there’s a lot of people out there who’s living paycheck to paycheck, and I get it and I know what that’s like.”….

A flood of voices (Question: Why do these critics matter?  What have they ever done for anybody?) online blasted Winfrey and Johnson’s invitation for donations, with some asking how they expected the public to give when many Americans “barely can pay rent, barely can put food on the table for our families.” Others demanded that the celebs instead fund the project by digging deeper into their pockets or rallying their wealthy friends in Hollywood and Washington, D.C….

Meanwhile: 9,000 applications pour into wildfire relief fund started by Oprah and ‘The Rock’

Meanwhile no apology here: For ‘Progressive’ Criminal Kaniela Ing Lahaina Fires are Just Another Grift

read … Dwayne Johnson addresses backlash to his and Oprah’s Maui fund | Honolulu Star-Advertiser (staradvertiser.com)

FEMA assistance exceeds $177.76 million

SA: … More than $177.76 million in federal assistance has been approved for 6,210 Maui households affected by the Aug. 8 wildfire in Lahaina and Upcountry, as of Friday.

The assistance approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency includes nearly $30 million for individuals and households, with $14.4 million in housing assistance and $15.6 million for “other needs,” according to a news release.

Additionally, the U.S. Small Business Administration approved $147.8 million in disaster loans, including $43.8 million for businesses and $104 million in home loans to help residents rebuild and recover from the disaster….

Nov. 9 is the deadline to apply for FEMA assistance and SBA disaster loans for physical property damage. Today is the last day for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private nonprofit organizations to apply for SBA economic injury disaster loans.

Government agencies, public institutions and certain private nonprofit organizations such as houses of worship have until Oct. 25 to submit requests for funding.

Meanwhile, the American Red Cross is continuing to assist wildfire survivors, helping 7,200 people — about 78% of the pre-disaster population of Lahaina — who are staying in more than two dozen hotels, the release said. The organization also is providing meals, health and mental health care, help with navigating paperwork, funeral expenses, financial support to transition out of hotels and other services to those affected by the disaster, including people who are not eligible for some FEMA programs.

Wildfire survivors can schedule an appointment with the Red Cross at RedCross.org/HIhelp or speak to a representative at any of the three Disaster Recovery Centers in Kahului, Lahaina and Pukalani.….

read … FEMA assistance exceeds $177.76 million

Non-profits provide housing for displaced Maui residents

KTLA: … Several non profit international relief organizations are helping ship modular pop-up homes to Maui, with a stop in Long Beach, to help Maui residents who were displaced by the recent fires. Thousands of residents were displaced after the Maui wildfire, considered the deadliest fire storm in the United States in more than a century, destroying more than 2,000 buildings, most of them homes.

The pre-wired, insulated and quickly assembled homes arrived in the United States from Hungary, transported to Long Beach, arriving on Tuesday, and will then be transferred to Hawaii.

Once they arrive in Maui, the homes will become a part of Ohana Hope Village, new temporary midterm housing in Hawaii, housing nearly 250 people.

read … Non-profits provide housing for displaced Maui residents 

Beyond the banyan tree, arborists work to preserve Lāhainā's overlooked ʻulu groves

HPR: … no zones, no Tyvek suits… those are only for homeowners ….

read … Beyond the banyan tree, arborists work to preserve Lāhainā's overlooked ʻulu groves

Film studios bill passes first reading in Council

SA: … Bill 59, if adopted, would provide greater real property tax incentives for eligible film studio facilities to move here — at least those willing to spend at least $100 million toward local improvements….

Disney is expected to soon film the live- action version of “Moana” in Hawaii, he said.

“And they will be here for a little bit of time, but the bulk of it is going to shoot in Atlanta,” Lee added, namely because that Southern city happens to be home to many large film stages.

“That’s where they can do the kind of visual effects and the stage work that you see in other movies that have come here for a little bit, then had to back to the continent — ‘Jumanji,’ ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ and ‘Jurassic Park.’”…

WHO ARE WE SUBSIDIZING? Miske Mob Were All Union Drivers on Set of Hawaii 5-0

read … Film studios bill passes first reading in Council

Extreme Gut and Replace Returns to Hawai`i State Legislature

IM: … Short form bills are introduced as empty vessels waiting to be filled. A hearing is held when substance is added. The most extreme short form bill was HB28 introduced in the 2023 legislative session. The convoluted process was questioned by Sherry Pollack.

The purpose of this Act is to effectuate the title of this Act. The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended to conform to the purpose of this Act. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.”

No one testified on the bill that said nothing. The House Finance Committee amended the short form bill to take effect on July 1, 3000. The Senate Ways and Means Committee amended the short form bill to take effect on 2050. The short form bill survived all hearings and floor votes, entering conference committee containing no substance.

The conference draft added two unrelated issues: upgrading department of taxation software and computer systems, and the development of the Hawai`i Pacific Hydrogen Hub by DBEDT and the University of Hawai`i.

The bill passed final reading in the house and senate without any opposition and was signed into law as Act 66 by the governor.

The bill appears to violate two sections of the Hawaii State Constitution. Article III addresses the legislature. Section 14 states, “Each law shall embrace but one subject” and Section 15 states, “No bill shall become law unless it shall pass three readings in each house on separate days.” Three readings on the actual contents….

read … Extreme Gut and Replace Returns to Hawai`i State Legislature

Shrapnel News: Hauula Hurricane Shelter Designed with Big Glass Walls

KHON: …  It comes with a big price tag ….Sen. Awa said the project comes with a hefty price tag $30 million, but much of the funding could come from the federal government….

Since 2011, the non-profit, Hui O Hauula has been working to create a safe place for residents to go to. The plan is called the Koolauloa Community Resilience Hub and the wheels are turning on the project. An environment assessment has been submitted to the state.

“We must have a place that’s a community safe room that will save people’s lives,” said Kelly-Paddock.

According to the document, the hub will be located on Hauula Homestead Road on 5 acres of state owned land….

During and after a disaster, the hub’s safe rooms that spread through three stories would be able to shelter 1,500 people for up to 30 days. There’s even a helistop included in the plan for medical evacuations….

(IDEA:  Invest in surgical thread and eye-patch manufacturing.)

read … State-of-the-art emergency shelter facility in the works for Windward Oahu | KHON2

This Waianae Condo Development Has Lost Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars To Embezzlement

CB: … After the initial discoveries, the board raised the matter directly with the president of Hawaiian Properties, the Makaha Surfside’s managing agent, which conducted its own financial investigation, and retained an independent forensic auditor selected by the board, and paid for by Hawaiian Properties.

The total loss has been pegged at $339,364.83, which appears to make it the largest loss of its kind uncovered in Hawaii.

Hawaiian Properties has now reimbursed the full amount stolen, along with legal fees incurred by the condominium association, the letter reported.

“The association has been made whole,” a board member confirmed, although he was not authorized to discuss the situation.

Hawaiian Properties has identified suspects believed to have carried out the theft, and filed a criminal complaint with city prosecutors but requested that details remain confidential, according to the board’s letter….

ILind: News from condo land 

ILind: There’s lots of interest in condo fraud and theft allegations

read … This Waianae Condo Development Has Lost Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars To Embezzlement

Big Island: One Psychiatrist to Treat 500 Homeless Lunatics

HNN: … On Hawaii Island, officials estimate about half of the homeless population need psychiatric services. And data shows the island’s homeless population is growing — jumping 45% in just five years.

In 2019, volunteers counted 690 people living in homeless camps and shelters across Big Island. Now, that number stands at more than 1,000.

read … Street medicine team expands to Big Island, where there’s lots of ground to cover and need to meet

Homeless Thugs Shake Down Retailers

SA: … The City and County of Honolulu’s sit-lie ordinance does not allow sitting or lying down in Waikiki and certain areas in other neighborhoods. It is also unlawful to block public sidewalks or store possessions on public property. However, these laws have not stopped those who are houseless from harassing customers as they walk from the parking lot to the store. Many store operators report that individuals are deterring customers from entering their stores so they choose to shop elsewhere.

Police must be continually called to remove these houseless, but they return days or even hours later. Some return seeking vengeance on the stores for calling the police. They break or steal surveillance cameras. They leave their human waste at the entrance to the store or smear it on doors and windows. They kick or punch displays, equipment, and smash windows and doors. Stores have also had to add locks to public bathrooms to avoid damage, or to prevent the restrooms from being converted to homes. The list goes on.

read … Consider retailer in houseless response

State flooded with complaints about out-of-state attorneys soliciting Maui wildfire survivors

HNN: … Dick said the flyer was approved by the Texas Bar Association and he has used similar flyers thousands of times, but apparently didn’t realize without a Hawaii license or working in partnership with a licensed Hawaii attorney, it is illegal to solicit clients here.

“We’ve looked at the laws, we were honest about being an out-of-state lawyer, I wasn’t trying to hide anything. Regardless of whether they liked my marketing or not, it’s so important that they know they have rights,” Dick said.

But Hawaii Chief Disciplinary Counsel Bradley Tamm said the flyer immediately raised suspicions of improper solicitation.

“I received 10, 12, 15 of these things from different sources sending me, ‘see what I got in the mail,’” Tamm said.

Tamm said he has looked into concerns about 42 lawyers or law firms and is actively investigating 22 attorneys, who could face license suspensions or criminal penalties.

In the wake of the disaster, and the onslaught of mainland lawyers, his office is overwhelmed.

“I’ll be candid with you. I didn’t have an emergency action plan for this,” Tamm said, adding some of the issues being raised have not come up before….

read … State flooded with complaints about out-of-state attorneys soliciting Maui wildfire survivors

Lahaina Fire News:

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