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Wednesday, June 26, 2024
June 26, 2024 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:42 PM :: 1660 Views

Maui TVR phase-out plan unconstitutional

Maui TVR phase-out wrong means for good goal

Maui Short-Term Rentals, the Minatoya List, and Housing Supply

Building Benchmarking Report -- deadline extended

Kauai Island of Retaliation: Six Months of County Council Drama and a Year in Jail After Putin Dupe Passes Along ‘Threat’ from Schizophrenic

More than 100 tackle heated debate over phony pretend phase-out of Maui vacation rentals

KITV: … Pa'ele Kiakona, one of the leaders of grassroots group Lahaina Strong, said, "we are fighting for our home, fighting to simply exist, and to make sure that our people remain here."

"They (rental owners) are fighting for their investment, they are fighting for their pockets, they are fighting for their own selfish gain," Kiakona added.

(Selfish gain?  Kiakona’s father Inmate# 95305-022  just got out of Federal Prison, April 9, 2024, for selling meth.  READ: 13 arrested; 2 lbs. of ice seized on Maui.)

Testifiers supporting the bill included several Lahaina residents who lost their homes to the blaze.

"We, the people of Maui, the kupa of Lahaina, will no longer allow the exploitation and extraction of our community. We are so over the perpetuation of harm to our people and our 'aina," fire survivor Shannon 'I'i said.

(‘Allow?’  CLUE:  Property cannot be seized under eminent domain without compensation to the owners.  There is no money to buy these units.  IDEA:  ‘Allow’ yourself to see reality.)   

Courtney Lazo, another fire survivor and realtor who previously did business with vacation rentals, added, "anyone who can stand here and say, 'protect my investment, protect my commission over the people of this place,' poho."

(So we will waste survivors’ time with a political scam which is absolutely unconstitutional and cannot deliver housing to them.  This circus is a diversion from any real solution.  Therefore, the result is more people will be leaving Maui.)

Mayor Richard Bissen mentioned 34% of housing units in West Maui are for residents, while the rest are transient accommodations or second homes owned by non-residents.

(CLUE:  He is counting regular hotel rooms as part of the 66%.  So let’s just eliminate all the hotels, LOL.)

read … More than 100 tackle heated debate over phase-out of Maui vacation rentals

Shakedown Begins: Pay the ‘Hawaiian Intellectual Property Group’ if you want to use a Hawaiian Name

HNN: … A baking mix company that came under fire for trademarking the Hawaiian word ‘okina has shut down, Hawaii News Now has learned.

(They were picked because they were an easy target.)

‘Okina was a Kailua-based baking mix company, but it left a foul taste (became a target) for community leaders and lawmakers (profiteers) in the new Native Hawaiian Intellectual Property Working Group.

“‘Okina was a tiny, one-person passion project with the intent of helping to improve the health of people and our planet and supporting small family farms,” the company said, in a statement.

“Kumu were consulted during the naming of the company and the name was a way to connect the founder with a place that she loves and that she, and five generations of her family, have called home. The business is closed and is grateful for the many people who supported it.”….

On the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website there are many companies that have trademarked the word Hawaii — from cosmetics and clothing companies to a business that sells inflatables. The Working Group is now hoping Lono God of Peace, a jewelry store in the Waikiki Shopping Plaza, and Kuleana Rum consider rebranding….

“I’m really happy that they are listening to us, that somebody is ‘paying’ attention,” said Vicky Holt Takamine, kumu hula and chair of the Native Hawaiian Intellectual Property Working Group.

(CLUE: You can rent a ‘copyright’ for ‘’Okina’, ‘Lono’ or ‘Kuleana’ if you pay enough money to the Native Hawaiian Intellectual Property Working Group.)

“Our language has meaning. Our language has life and when you name something after one of our most powerful deities like Wakea that’s really invoking and very much misappropriating the intention behind that inoa (name),” said Kahōkū Lindsey-Asing, of the Pa’i Foundation.

(QUESTION: Like renaming ‘Mauna Kea’ to ‘Mauna a Wakea’?)

Fun Read from 2022: Anti-Telescope Leaders Oppose HB2024 -- 'Bill does not provide any benefits'

HPR:  It’s a Shakedown -- In 2003, Holt-Takamine and other kumu hula, cultural practitioners, attorneys and UH law school students gathered to draft a document claiming Native Hawaiian intellectual property rights. The Paoakalani Declaration was acknowledged in a resolution by the Hawaiʻi State Legislature a year later, but no action was taken to codify any part of it.  “The state should adopt the Paoakalani Declaration as a policy,” Holt-Takamine said. “My concern is that the state should not own our intellectual property rights, because they then can sell and use it and give permission to other people to use it. We need to maintain our own sovereignty by claiming our own intellectual property rights, as a lāhui.”

read … Company’s closure over ‘cultural appropriation’ sparks broader dialogue on Hawaii trademarks

Sovereignty Activist and Disbarred Lawyer Gary Dubin hit with major malpractice judgment

ILind: … A Honolulu jury early this month found former high-flying foreclosure defense attorney Gary Victor Dubin committed legal malpractice and fraud over several years by failing to properly represent a client facing foreclosure.

The jury verdict, announced on June 3 after less than a full day of deliberations, found Dubin committed legal malpractice and fraud, and breached contractual obligations and his fiduciary duty to the client. The jury also found Dubin’s legal malpractice had inflicted emotional distress on his client, but ruled it was not done intentionally.

The jury awarded the client, Joseph K. Chandler, $18,260.10 in special damages and $179,927 in punitive damages, as well as attorney fees and court costs, which have yet to be determined.

Honolulu attorney William Fenton “Willy” Sink, who represented Chandler, said he was happy with the outcome.

However, Sink said prospects of eventually collecting on the judgment are uncertain.

Sink expects Dubin to appeal the jury verdict….

Dubin was disbarred by order of the Hawaii Supreme Court in 2020 after a lengthy disciplinary process that stretched over nearly four years, during which he aggressively fought charges brought by the state’s Disciplinary Counsel….

2020: Dubin Disbarred--Its 'Foreclosure Hour' for Associate of John Waihee and Keanu Sai

read … Former attorney Gary Dubin, disbarred and in failing health, hit with major malpractice judgement

Judge finds ex-OCCC officer guilty of murdering his mother

SA: … Circuit Court Judge Rowena Somerville today found a 52-year-old former Oahu Community Correctional Center training officer guilty on all counts including second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of his mother eight years ago.

Anthony F. Pereira II, 52, opted to waive a jury trial in favor of a bench trial on June 17, after a jury had been selected and the trial was ready to go.

Somerville oversaw three days of testimony and this morning’s closing arguments before reaching the verdict. Pereira was also found guilty of kidnapping, terroristic threatening, firearm and drug charges….

June 21, 2024: Meth Addicted Jail Guard went to Game Room Before Killing Mother

read … Judge finds ex-OCCC officer guilty of murdering his mother

8 Hawaii Sheriff’s Deputies Are Now On Leave—three arrested--As A Racial Harassment Investigation Unfolds

CB: … Eight state sheriff’s deputies have been placed on paid leave pending investigation into allegations that a Black deputy sheriff in training was racially harassed by his co-workers during shift briefings, according to a source familiar with the incident.  ….

According to the source, the eight officials placed on leave included at least one supervisor. The eight allegedly laughed at racially charged comments about fried chicken and watermelon instead of reporting them to the department’s chain of command, according to the source….

Last week the department issued a statement announcing it had arrested Deputy Sheriff Alvin Turla, 46, on June 18 for harassment. The statement gave no explanation of who Turla allegedly harassed, or why.

Then, on Tuesday, Wayne Ibarra, acting public information officer for the Department of Law Enforcement, announced the department’s Criminal Investigations Division had also arrested Sheriff’s Deputy Sergeant Erich Mitamura, 40, for harassment….

read … 8 Hawaii Sheriff’s Deputies Are Now On Leave As A Harassment Investigation Unfolds

Honolulu Poised To Pay Former HPD Officer Who Faced Retaliation For Affairs With 2 Female Cops

CB: … A Honolulu City Council committee has tentatively approved a settlement with a former Honolulu police officer who sued the city for gender discrimination and said he was retaliated against after having romantic relationships with two female officers.

The amount of the settlement has not been disclosed. 

Former Cpl. Justin Castro, who resigned prior to being discharged in October 2021, sued the city in August 2022 saying he was forced out of the department after he ended a relationship with one of the women, Officer Kelsey Messmer.  …

An HPD disciplinary report submitted to the Legislature last year says Castro dated a subordinate officer and threatened to terminate her if she didn’t continue the relationship. He was also investigated for two counts of abuse on a family or household member and one count of first-degree terroristic threatening, but the charges were never filed, according to court records. …

The settlement is pending approval by the full City Council at its next meeting on July 10.

Castro’s complaint says he petitioned the court for a temporary restraining order against Messmer, but despite this, she bought a house adjacent to his and continued harassing him. 

Court records show Castro petitioned for temporary restraining orders against Messmer in 2019 and 2020, but both were denied. 

Messmer also petitioned for temporary restraining orders against Castro in 2019 and 2020, according to court records. They were both initially granted but later dissolved because the court found they were not necessary to prevent abuse. …

2022: Ofc Kelsey Messmer watches as her new boyfriend becomes sworn officer

PDF: CastroComplaint.pdf (d1l18ops95qbzp.cloudfront.net)

read … Honolulu Poised To Pay Former HPD Officer Who Faced Retaliation For Affairs With 2 Female Cops

Hawaii Governor Would Keep Power to Halt Radio In Emergencies

RI: … The Hawaii Association of Broadcasters is actively contesting Governor Josh Green’s plan to veto HB 2581, a bill designed to amend a state law that currently permits a county mayor or the Governor to halt all “electronic media” within the state during emergencies.

Currently, under Hawaii law, emergency powers allow these officials to, “Shut off water mains, gas mains, electric power connections, or suspend other services, and, to the extent permitted by or under federal law, suspend electronic media transmission.”

“Electronic media,” as described, is a wide blanket that could be used to include radio, television, internet, cable, cell service, text messaging, and social media. This existing statute is criticized for being outdated and unconstitutional as it encompasses “prior restraint,” a form of censorship deemed unlawful by the Supreme Court.

HB 2581 proposes a revision of the statute to eliminate these contentious powers, ensuring that essential communication channels like radio remain operational during critical times.

While signaling he intends to veto the bill, Green stated he believes this measure is essential to prevent the misuse of electronic media for acts of extreme violence or terrorism, according to Courthouse News Service….

SA: Green plans to veto 3 bills aimed at emergency powers | Honolulu Star-Advertiser

MN: Hawaiʻi Broadcasters say governor’s intent to veto HB 2581 maintains ‘government overreach’ : Maui Now

HTH: News media urge Green not to veto House bill

read … Hawaii Governor Would Keep Power to Halt Radio In Emergencies

Electricity market may open to competition in upcoming PUC docket

KHON: … “We’re going to start that,” said Leo Asuncion, chairman of the Public Utilities Commission. “I’ve asked my staff if we can start it on July 1st, open a docket, an investigative docket around taking all the discussions over the past 20 plus years.”

Asuncion is talking about wheeling — a utility industry term for when a power producer that is not the main utility uses the common grid to transmit electricity to a buyer. In other words, renting a ride on HECO’s lines to give consumers another choice.

It’s something that’s been talked about for decades but never gets out the gate, leaving HECO on most islands, and KIUC on Kauai, as the sole power companies, unlike most other major mainland cities where wheeling is common and competition is broad…. 

IM: Public Utilities Commission Will Open Wheeling Proceeding Next Week | Ililani Media

read … Electricity market may open to competition in upcoming PUC docket

HECO denies 9 out of 10 damage claims in 2023, sparking controversies

KHON: … A filing made on Monday showed HECO’s annual Damage Claim Information report with the Public Utilities Commission. However, HECO told the PUC that they mixed up Hawaii and Mauiʻs numbers in the original letter. HECOʻs mix up has been corrected in the information below.

On Oahu – Only 69 out of 671 claims were paid a total of $215,178

528 were closed unpaid

Big Island – Only 20 out of 107 claims were paid a total of $24,197

79 were closed unpaid

Maui – Only 2 out of 210 were paid a total of nearly $14,000

42 were closed unpaid

A note indicates that unpaid closed claims were either denied, withdrawn, or closed due to lack of response.... 

IM: HECO Companies Paid 9% of Damage Claims Filed in 2023 | Ililani Media

read … HECO denies 9 out of 10 damage claims in 2023, sparking controversies

The Rise of Poverty Inc.

TA: … Perhaps the clearest example of public-choice theory turned on its head is Job Corps, a $1.8 billion job-training program for young adults that, unlike most War on Poverty initiatives, has been contracted out since its inception in 1964. Decades of evidence suggest that the program accomplishes very little. It served barely 50,000 students a year before the pandemic, meaning it cost about $34,000 a student. (Job Corps largely shut down during the pandemic and hasn’t fully restored operations since.) In one 2018 audit, the Department of Labor’s inspector general concluded that the program “could not demonstrate beneficial job training outcomes.” Another investigation, by the Government Accountability Office, noted more than 13,500 safety incidents from 2016 to 2017 at Job Corps centers, nearly half of them drug-related episodes or assaults. In 2015, two students were murdered in separate campus-related crimes. Critics have also questioned the value of running an expensive residential program in mostly rural areas, far from actual jobs.

Job Corps administrators manage to hang on to government contracts for decades. (One such company notes on its website that it won its first Job Corps contract in 1964.) Today, the biggest operator is the Management & Training Corporation, a Utah-based company that runs 20 Job Corps centers nationwide. In 2022, MTC won three multiyear contracts, worth a total of about $263 million, to run Job Corps Centers in Nevada, New Jersey, and Hawaii. The program remains popular in Congress, especially in districts where centers are located. The Friends of Job Corps Congressional Caucus, organized by a lobbying organization for Job Corps contractors, has 80 members. (MTC’s president serves on the organization’s board.)

Contractors’ longevity stems in part from their ability to outlast administrations—and the simple fact that, once a contract is awarded, the company that wins it often becomes a de facto monopoly. When the next contract rolls around, there may be no credible competitors.

In short, an effort to curtail Big Government has instead preserved the worst of both worlds: all the spending and bloat of government, with none of the public accountability. No wonder, then, that poverty sticks around. There’s simply too much demand for it….

read … The Rise of Poverty Inc. - The Atlantic

40% of fatal accidents involve cannabis-impaired driving

BIN: … According to Hawai‘i Island police, 40% of people involved in fatal traffic crashes on Hawai‘i Island had cannabis in their system in 2023 and marijuana usage continues to be a factor in impaired driving throughout the state….

read … Hawai‘i Island police participate in training to detect and address cannabis-impaired driving

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