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Thursday, July 23, 2009
July 23, 2009 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 12:46 PM :: 10075 Views

Lingle asks for patience in union talks

In a meeting with reporters yesterday, Lingle said she had made a counteroffer to unions but would not give details. (Why doesn't Democrat Borreca mention the details that have been discussed?  Promotion of chaos and confusion in pursuit of a Democrat Gubernatorial victory in 2010?  Here is a LINK: to details)

"One of the characteristics you need in these negotiations is a little bit of patience. Obviously there is a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty on the part of our employees and I regret it, but it is part of the process," Lingle said.

"We are waiting to hear back from the unions and I expect we will get back together early next week," Lingle said.

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While State cuts back--Legislators' Political travel raises criticism

(Hawaii Democrat Politicians explore the uses of 'stimulus" money...  These are the same legislators who didn't want to take the same pay cut everybody else is being asked to take.)

The trip is raising questions at a time when hundreds of state workers are preparing for the possibility of losing their jobs due to the state's financial crisis.

State lawmakers -- all Democrats -- who are attending the National Conference of State Legislatures' 2009 Legislative Summit this week in Philadelphia.

State Senators
Carol Fukunaga
Les Ihara
Russell Kokubun

Clarence Nishihara
Brian Taniguchi

State House representatives
Karen Awana
Tom Brower
Jerry Chang
Isaac Choy
Ken Ito
Jon Riki Karamatsu
Michael Magaoay
John Mizuno
Mark Nakashima
Joseph Souki
Roy Takumi

"At this point, where everybody else is cutting down trips -- they're cutting down non-essential expenses -- I think either the delegation should not have gone at all, or maybe you send one person from the Senate and one person from the House," said Sen. Sam Slom (R, Diamond Head-Hawaii Kai).

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DoE saves bureaucrats from layoffs--cuts school athletics

According to the latest figures released by the O'ahu Interscholastic Association yesterday, public school athletic departments can expect to operate their programs with less than 65 percent of the money they were allocated for 2008-09.

The budget crunch affects supplies and equipment (57.2 percent cut), transportation (55.6 percent) and paid coaching positions (29.6 percent).

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Hawaii mayor Mafiaboi hits Lingle over Kulani closing

("Many of my best friends are in there!  How will they vote for me if they are sent to Haleiwa?")

Kulani is a 20-acre, 160-bed minimum-security prison that opened in 1946 as a work camp.

A spokesman from Kenoi's office said there are about 90 employees and 120 inmates at the prison. (Cost effective?)

TOTALLY RELATED: Billy Kenoi Helped Pali Shooter , Billy Kenoi at Shooters--and the Pali shooter--the connections

(Maybe the guards could teach counterfeiting...then Kulani would become a profit center and the State would be able to get out of its financial crisis.)

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GTMO Greenwell shouted off the stage

The togetherness was briefly interrupted by the arrival of North Kona Councilman Kelly Greenwell, who stressed to the group that the county needs to present a united front in order to get important stimulus funding from the federal government.
"We cannot afford what's happening in this room tonight," Greenwell said. "When I go back to Washington tomorrow, I'm going to hear this, 'Don't come to me and ask for help with a split county.'"
But Greenwell was soon shouted off the stage when he began asking the ethnicity of people in the audience, apparently trying to make the point that the mostly white crowd had little cultural clout because it included so few Asians or Hawaiians, who make up a big part of the population of the island as a whole.

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Kauai Council airs dirty laundry

Finally holding a much-awaited discussion about government transparency, rules and policy, Kaua‘i County Council members pulled no punches in a day-long, back-and-forth that at times turned heated on Wednesday at the Historic County Building.

....on the docket from 9 a.m. until a dinner break (and The Garden Island’s press deadline) was a single agenda item about members’ access to the agenda, the placement of public documents on the county Web site, equitable and timely circulation of documents, and general access to information.

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Office wants more money for elections (scam to push mail-in ballots)

Cronin appeared yesterday before the state Elections Commission, which hired him, to explain that because of spending restrictions of $2.8 million by the Legislature and $113,000 by Lingle, the Elections Office will have money to pay salaries but will be unable to pay its utility bills after August.

Some of the Elections Commission's nine commissioners told Cronin he should start planning for the elections to be held with the current restricted budget.

"This is what it is and we have to be proactive and positive -- people are doing more with much less," commissioner Yuki Lee Sugimura said.

Also urging changes was Brian Schatz, state Democratic Party chairman, who said elections are a critical issue and the state should consider mail-in ballots.

"I'm proposing that we take a serious look at the exclusive vote-by-mail option, which seems to increase turnout," Schatz said in an e-mail message.

(Could just fire Cronin.)

RELATED: Even with cuts, don't shortchange elections

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Hawaii sixth in federal spending

Last year's total of more than $15 billion worked out to $11,651 for every person here....

The majority of federal spending -- $10 billion last year -- was spent in Honolulu. The Big Island got the second-highest amount, about $1 billion.

The federal government spent $659 million on Maui, $477 million on Kauai and $3.3 million at Kalaupapa on Molokai. Another $2.6 billion went to federal spending not concentrated on any one island.

Virginia ranked No. 1 in per capita federal spending with $15,256 per person, followed by Maryland, $13,829; Alaska, $13,730; Kentucky, $12,242; and New Mexico, $12,017.

States that had the lowest per capita federal spending were Utah at $6,255; Nevada, $6,638; and Wisconsin, $7,132.

The national average for per capita federal spending was $9,042 per person.


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Police seize carts, bikes of homeless at Moiliili park

"They're actually receptive because we made it clear we're not kicking them out, just working around them," said Maj. Robert Green, who added that no one was arrested.

Bernadette Anderson and other homeless citizens gave a different account.

"They told us we had 30 minutes to pack up our (expletive) and get out. They chased us out of there," Anderson said. "They told us we cannot be in the park, we can't be on the sidewalk. We have nowhere to go."

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'It's bad, bad, bad' in Hawaii for sellers of new cars, trucks

There were 16,327 new cars and light trucks registered in the state between January and June, or about 31.5 percent fewer than the 23,839 sold during the same period in 2008.

Vehicle sales fell the most on Maui, where the count was down about 46.2 percent to 1,490.

On other islands:

• Big Island sales were off 40.9 percent to 1,799.

• Kaua'i's new registrations totaled 721, or 35.1 percent down from the first six months of 2008.

• O'ahu's car business fared the best of all the counties with only a 27.2 percent decline. Dealers in Honolulu sold 12,317 vehicles compared with 16,917 a year earlier.

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