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Thursday, February 19, 2009
February 19, 2009
By Andrew Walden @ 8:55 PM :: 8183 Views

Group opposes Legislative raid on cancer funds

Legislation proposing to transfer the tobacco tax money to the general fund because of the looming state deficit would "effectively kill the opportunity to have (cutting-edge) cancer research in Hawaii," Mark Clanton said in an interview yesterday. "There will not be an NCI-designated cancer research center in Hawaii if that money goes away and that building does not get built."

Dr. Carl-Wilhelm Vogel, former Cancer Research Center director, worked hard for nine years to try to get funding, a lease agreement and approvals for a new cancer center, Clanton said. Vogel had envisioned a clinical trial facility at the center...."The cancer center is very fortunate to get an extension with funding," Clanton said. "They have until September 2010 to pull it together."

(So Mufi is having difficulty providing zoning approvals for a world-class cancer center and that is endangering the entire project?  And now the Leg wants to keep the tax increase for its favorite pastime, employing HGEA members.)

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Pork Dreams busted: Hawaii County 'Ineligible' for stimulus

Public Works Director Warren Lee said it appears as though most -- if not all -- projects included in Mayor Billy Kenoi's request for $487.1 million in federal economic stimulus money would be ineligible for consideration -- at least at this time. 

Lee, however, said road projects included in Kenoi's request apparently fail to meet the federal definition of "shovel-ready."  Kenoi said he learned this week the definition of "shovel-ready" with regard to the economic stimulus package: 50 percent of any money received for that project would have to be obligated within 180 days and construction would have to conclude within two years. 

(The permitting and apporoval process has become so cumbersome that Hawaii can't even get federal pork projects anymore.  Socialism is strangling on its own red tape!) 

The South Kona bypass project was excluded from Kenoi's stimulus package, and Lee said the county would likely not seek any federal funds for it at this time because of legal issues. He said although the county was on the winning side of condemnation proceedings to use privately owned property for the road, there is still a chance the property owners will appeal the matter.

(But wait!  There is still "son of Porkulus" which hasn't even been written yet!)
While the county may not be eligible for some of the road funding now, it is very likely it will be eligible later this year, Lee said. Projects that receive federal funding but do not use it in the required time limit will have to return it, meaning the county will be able to make another request later, he said.
Also, Lee said there may be another federal stimulus bill approved later this year that will provide additional money for county projects.

(Related) Maui Mayor Tavares: "We don't know how much is going to come to Maui County," she said, adding that the county doesn't know what criteria will be used to determine what projects will qualify for federal money under the stimulus measure.

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Lingle and Hannemann Set to Meet with Obama

And the Democrat media continue to attempt to use the fact that for some reason the Republican Govenor didn't support the Democratic presidential nominee against her.  How dull.  Now they have dueling meetings between Lingle and Hannemann to see who gets blessed by "The One".

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Civil Unions = Veto Bait?

Maybe it’s out there somewhere, but I have not seen any news reports with Governor Lingle’s reaction to the Civil Unions bill that recently passed the House 33-17. ...If Governor Lingle signals her intentions regarding Civil Unions (in either direction), it would provide cynical uncertain legislators an opportunity to chose a more politically advantageous position. Which is likely to be the main reason why the Governor remains silent.

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SB: Go easy on murderers, reject 'Karen's law'

A bill now before the Hawaii Legislature, referred to as "Karen's Law," would require a person age 15-17 accused of murder, with a criminal record and no sign of mental problems to be tried as an adult.

The Justice Department last year reported that laws transferring alleged juvenile offenders to adult courts generally have not resulted in reductions in juvenile crime rates. (Key word: Juvenile.  What about adult crime rates which begin at age 18?)

In addition, Griffin added, juveniles convicted in adult criminal court are more likely to commit other crimes after being released from prison...  (Maybe that's because they are guilty of more serious crimes.)

(With arguments like these it looks like a trial lawyer wrote this editorial.)

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