Overworked Doctor Commits Suicide at Tripler
Honolulu Tea Party Rally, Monday April 16
Bailout: $60M Loss as Feds Sell Interest in Central Pacific Bank
HTA: Visitor Arrivals up 2.5% from Year Ago
Hawaii NRA Instructor Liability Bill to be Heard in Senate Committee
Applicants Sought for Chair of the Elections Commission
Kealakehe Selected as Site of Future Judiciary Complex in Kona
DLNR Snares Slowly Torture Pigs
April 22 is Deadline for Reapportionment Litigation
SA: Whether there will be further challenges to the redistricting plan won't be known until the deadline passes April 22. After the lawsuit that sent the original plan back to the state Reapportionment Commission once already, any critics should have to make a compelling case that any further delay is warranted. (Not a problem.)
Meanwhile, the state Office of Elections has made the (ir-)rational decision to press ahead with the district maps as they're currently drawn.
The electoral train seems to be back on track, and not a moment too soon. This is a critical election, both nationally and locally.
(Wrong. The reapportionment plan will be challenged in court and it will be overturned. It is unconstitutional to take 108,000 people out of the reapportionment population base just because Malama Solomon wants a Senate seat. Learn this.)
read … April 22
Tires Slashed, Signs Stolen: Cayetano's Campaign Targeted Again
HR: Today, Cayetano disclosed another incident - one of his volunteers had a tire slashed yesterday outside his Mapunapuna campaign headquarters.
“This campaign is getting a little rough,” Cayetano told Hawaii Reporter.
Campaign banners posted at supporters' homes also have been stolen, Cayetano said.
Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle, who Cayetano will challenge in the 2012 August primary, said earlier about the gun shots: "What happened is obviously a criminal act and should be pursued vigorously by law enforcement.”
Caroline Sluyter, spokesperson for the Honolulu Police Department, said: "There are no suspects at this point (for the shooting) but the case is open. If anyone has tips, they can call 911."
read … Pro-Rail Thugs
Spending Billions on Rail, City Now Cuts Back on TheBus
HNN: The adjustments will affect as many as 24 bus routes and thousands of riders.
The news is just starting to reach the 220,000 people who ride the bus daily….
Yoshioka said the changes will save up to $7 million a year, and make the bus run more efficiently.
One change increases time between Route 1 busses to fifteen minutes from twelve minutes to minimize the chance of a second Route 1 catching up to the first, as often happens.
"In that case we're really not carrying what we should be carrying," Yoshioka said. "The first bus is jammed full, the second bus is pretty much empty." (City Logic: Bus jammed full, so cut the number of busses.)
On the weekend, some express routes will be spaced sixty minutes apart instead of thirty. And Route 14 will cease servicing Kapahulu, Waikiki, Diamond Head and Kahala. (Let ‘em walk)
A major route that could be discontinued is the Route B City Express from Kalihi to Waikiki. The city said another bus will increase runs to make up for that loss. (Yeah. Nobody in Kalihi needs transit.)
Yoshioka said the route adjustments won't mean bus drivers will be laid off, but there might be fewer new hires.
He said the present plan set to take effect in June could be adjusted, as the city tries to balance (rail-motivated) cost cutting with the needs of bus riders.
read … Killing Transit to pay for rail transit
Aging Flower Child Abercrombie Morphs into Spiro Agnew
Shapiro: Gov. Neil Abercrombie dismissed his critics in the environmental community as "professional naysayers" making "apocalyptic statements." Ah, the cycle of life. The aging flower child morphs into Spiro Agnew with a beard.
» The Abercrombie administration gave conflicting testimony on whether it supports bills to exempt government projects from environmental review, with some agencies for and others against. When Abercrombie promised a new theory of governance, who knew he meant chaos theory?
read … Agnew
After Decades, Kamaoa Wind Farm Finally Being Torn Down
SA: The company that owns the defunct Kamaoa Wind Farm at South Point on Hawaii island is in the final stages of removing the 37 derelict wind turbines that have been sitting idle for the past six years. (They’ve been junk for a lot longer than that.)
The turbines, which were taken out of (pro-forma) operation in 2006, will be demolished and sold for scrap, said Steve Pace, spokesman for the wind project's owner, Tawhiri Power LLC. The company was unsuccessful in its attempts to find anyone who wanted to buy the antiquated turbines for use at another wind energy project, he said.
"We started taking them down a few weeks ago, and we should be finished by the end of (this) week," Pace said. "We're working with scrappers to cut them up and haul them away."
Pace would not disclose the cost to remove the turbines or their scrap value.
(Kamaoa had to become an international news story before the operators would tear it down. This is the future of windfarms everywhere.)
read … They finally figured out that the symbolism was bad
After Kamehameha – DHHL Deal Fails, Jeff Stone Sells Golf Course to Firm Headed by Micah Kane
SA: Local developer Jeff Stone inked a deal Friday to sell Makaha Valley Country Club to a golf course investment firm less than a year after he canceled a plan to donate the property to Kamehameha Schools and the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands for education and affordable housing.
Pacific Links Hawaii, a company with operations run by Micah Kane, a Kamehameha Schools trustee and former DHHL director, is the buyer. Pacific Links and parent company Pacific Links International are wholly owned by Chinese entrepreneur and Canadian citizen Du Sha, founder of the 97-store Home World Group, based in China.
A purchase price was not disclosed by Stone or Pacific Links.
A Pacific Links spokeswoman said "serious conversations about acquisitions of Makaha East began in December of 2011."
Kane, who attended the gift ceremony as a Kamehameha Schools trustee and still holds that position, joined Pacific Links as chief operating officer in November.
Pacific Links CEO Bruce Simmonds is the founder of ClubLink, Canada's largest owner and operator of golf clubs.
Pacific Links Hawaii, formerly known as Hawaiian Golf Properties, bought the Makaha West course in April 2011.
June 25, 2011: Ka Pua Makaha: Multi-million dollar giveaway of DHHL assets disguised as “gift”
read … Links
Data Mining May Penalize Doctors Who Help Poor, Homeless
Zunin: Several local physicians are under investigation for prescriptive practices, and three of them have lost privileges to treat Medicaid patients, according to a report this week. …
The problem is far deeper than needing to weed out "bad apples," whether they are physicians or patients. There are many more excellent doctors who work on the front line and do their best to treat medically complicated, unemployable, often homeless patients with limited insurance resources and onerous reimbursement. Data mining may cause some good physicians to hit the radar based simply on the patient population they are willing to serve….
read … Senator from Iowa Controls Your Doctors
Bag Tax May Not Be Heard in House?
CB: At the beginning of this week, only one of two bills that would impose a five cents 1 fee on bags was still alive. House Bill 2260 died a mysterious death last month, when House Majority Leader Pono Chong, who opposes the bill, said he made an administrative mistake. (You can read about it here. The other, Senate Bill 2511, passed three committees almost unanimously — Republican Sen. Sam Slom voted against it — and moved over to the House.
But this week, supporters began to worry that the House would kill this version, too.
Only one committee still has to hear the bill — House Finance — before it would go to conference and a full floor vote. But the Finance Committee has yet to schedule a hearing on it, one method of stopping it, and it must do so before a Thursday deadline.
Rep. Marcus Oshiro, the head of the Finance Committee, who is in charge of scheduling the bill for a hearing, could not be reached for comment.
But the measure’s supporters, including Sen. Mike Gabbard, say that they heard Oshiro wasn’t going to hear it. (GOOD!)
Thus, the reincarnation of the legislation on the Senate side.
“We are moving into the conference phase, so the plot thickens,” said Gabbard.
Senate leaders took House Bill 2483, which dealt with climate change, gutted it, and inserted the single-use bag bill into it….
“It’s perplexing,” said Robert Harris, executive director of the Hawaii Sierra Club, which is strongly supporting the measure. “It is completely internal (to the House), and it is relatively secret opposition. I just don’t know who, what or why is holding this up.” (Good. Remain ignorant. Your ignorance is my bliss.)
read … Bag Banners Perplexed
Frankel: “Big money’s at stake” on Haleakala
MN: (Hokulia shakedown figure) David Frankel said he continues to have concerns about fairness of the process in the case.
He said he's concerned about the amount of "pressure being brought to bear" to get the telescope built. He specifically cited pressure from U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye's office on former Haleakala National Park Superintendent Marilyn Parris.
In a sworn statement signed June 16, Parris said she was well aware that Inouye had been displeased with her statements as park superintendent about the telescope project's adverse impacts on the summit of Haleakala. She said she was put under "heavy pressure" from the senator's office to "mute objections" from the National Park Service.
Frankel said Jacobson also felt pressured to advance the telescope project, although the former hearing officer said it did not come directly from Inouye's office.
"Significant improprieties have taken place to get this project built," Frankel said.
It's "abundantly clear" that Inouye wants to see the telescope built, he said, and it's common knowledge that Inouye "exerts tremendous pressure in the state."
Peter Boylan, Inouye's deputy chief of staff for government and external affairs, declined comment on Frankel's remarks….
“…Big money's at stake….” >>> Hokulia Settlement Exposed
read … Another Shake Down
HSTA Will Resume bargaining April 5
SA: The federal team's visit came as the teachers union announced that negotiations aimed at ending a months-long labor dispute with the state will resume next week.
Hawaii State Teachers Association President Wil Okabe told members Thursday night that the state has offered to meet April 5 to "resume bargaining." The union has long asked for negotiations to resume, and said the invitation is a "positive sign."
"Getting back to the bargaining table is only half the battle," Okabe said in a letter to members. "Getting a fair contract is the real challenge. We must continue pressing for a negotiated settlement."
Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Education would not comment on what its team found during the visit. Sources said results of the review will likely be released in late April or early May.
read … Results of Race review expected as soon as late April
Sunshine Law likely to be amended by several pending bills
ILind: SB 2737 SD1, HD1
Permits use of interactive conference technology to increase ability of members of state and county boards and commissions to attend board meetings. Establishes requirements for notice and use of visual aids.
SB2858 SD1, HD1
Creates a process for an agency to obtain judicial review of a decision made by the Office of Information Practices relating to the Sunshine Law or the Uniform Information Practices Act, and clarifies standard of review.
SB2859 SD1, HD1
Allows board and commission members to hear testimony for a meeting canceled for lack of quorum, to attend informational meetings, and for a four-year period to discuss board business via social media.
Also still alive… HB1611 HD2
Allows multiple board members to attend the same public gatherings and community events that are not related to any matter over which the board is currently exercising its authority and meets requirements for permitted interactions. Allows multiple members to attend the same conferences and seminars if the member produces a public report and meets requirements for permitted interactions. Allows notice of board meetings to be sent to persons requesting notice by e-mail.
read .. Sunshine
Amid gold rush to recruit veterans, concerns over rankings of "military friendly" colleges
AP: the newly expanded Post 9/11 G.I. Bill will pay colleges of all types around $9 billion this year to educate nearly 600,000 veterans, and virtually every school wants to expand its slice of that pie.
(And schools like UH Manoa which are infested with tenured pseudo-intellectual anti-American frauds are distraught over the price they are paying for their political correctness. So sad.)
read … Tough Luck UH Manoa and UH Hilo
Medicare Paying $15,000 to Save Old People’s Vision
95 year-old Suzuo Yamada from Saint Louis Heights is scheduled to get his implant on Tuesday.
"My vision right now, I can see around, but I can't get your features exactly or anything," he says.
The implant costs around $15,000, but according to Dr. Bennett, Medicare foots the bill for those who qualify for the surgery.
read … Just Wait til Abercrombie’s Medical Connector Gets its Hands on This Expense
NAACP sunset vigil to honor King and victim of Florida shooting
SA: The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People-Hawaii Chapter next week will be among chapters of the civil rights organization nationwide to honor Trayvon Martin and Martin Luther King Jr. on the 44th anniversary of King's death.
Martin, 17, was fatally shot Feb. 26 by a neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman, 28, in Sanford, Fla., and the incident has sparked protests and widespread calls for Zimmerman's arrest. King, the civil rights movement leader, was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn., on April 4, 1968.
Honolulu's sunset vigil will be held from 6 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Kakaako Waterfront Park.
Related: Hamakua Resident Roseanne Barr Publishes Address of George Zimmerman’s Parents
read … NAACP
Council approves $10K for Police Commission counsel
KGI: Kaua‘i County Council members on Thursday honored a request from the Kaua‘i Police Commission for $10,000 to retain special counsel to file a complaint seeking a declaratory ruling on who has the authority to supervise or discipline the police chief.
“I believe that this is something that needs to be done, there is a definite controversy involving the powers of the commission and the mayor,” Councilman Mel Rapozo said.
The request came after a recent power struggle between the administration and the commission. On Feb. 1 Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. placed Police Chief Darryl Perry on leave. Three weeks later the commission put Perry back to work, but Carvalho would not return his badge and gun until March 12.
Read … $10,000