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Friday, October 5, 2012
October 5, 2012 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:17 PM :: 5646 Views

How Lingle Can Turn it Around

Letter: 39 Legislators Demanded Rail EIS Rush-Job

Mizuno Campaigns Accused of Illegally Comingling Funds

Hanabusa No-Show at HTLA Debate

15 to Finish: More UH Students on Track to Complete Degree on Time

Lawyers: Hawaii Can be Sued for Slip-Falls on Public Land

DHHL breaks ground for Lalamilo Waimea Homesteads

Poll: Hanabusa 49 – Djou 44%

CB: Hanabusa's edge over Charles Djou at this point in the 1st Congressional District race is five points, 49 percent to 44 percent, with 7 percent undecided….

The Hanabusa-Djou survey polled 856 likely voters for a margin of error of 3.3 percent….

Though Hanabusa's lead is in the single digits, barely larger than the margin of error and smaller than the number of undecideds in the contest….

"People are more or less defaulting to where they were two years ago," he said, a reference to Hanabusa's 49.6-43.6 margin in 2010.

Obama's supporters back Hanabusa over Djou by a 76-18 percent clip, while supporters of Republican Mitt Romney back Djou, 94-4. Similarly, Caldwell supporters back Hanabusa, 62 percent to 35 percent for Djou, while Cayetano supporters back Djou, 54 percent to 40 percent. The 1st Congressional District makes up about 70 percent of Oahu's population.

Djou's biggest support bloc is made up of voters who subscribe to conservative economic theory.

Sixty-nine percent of Djou voters have a negative view of the economy; a plurality (46 percent) believe in across-the-board rather than targeted spending cuts; and a narrow plurality (34 percent) say a deficit-reduction plan should include no taxes, even for those with high incomes. Those response rates are not quite as conservative as those from Romney supporters in Hawaii, but it's moving in the same direction.

(The rest of the article is spin by a pollster employed by Jeff Stone’s business partner, Pierre Omidyar.)

read … Djou Within Reach

Progressive Panics as Mazie Polls Lull Democrat Voters to Sleep

Nikki Love Heat: Mazie better bank a lot of those +17 as soon as absentee ballots arrive in voters’ mail boxes, especially on the Kauai and Maui where there ain’t many competitive races on the General Election Ballot– with Barry and Tulsi shoo-ins to win in Hawaii, and county council races relatively unexciting in those two counties (don’t know if the Kauai Persecutor’s race is ugly or not), who knows what kind of turn-out your gonna see without a strong GOTV effort. On Maui, only State Senator Roz Baker (South & West Maui) has a GOP opponent while Reps. Carroll (Molokai, Lanai, E. Maui), Yamashita (Upcountry Maui) and McKelvey (W. Maui) have relatively easy general election contests. South Maui has newcomer Kaniela Ing taking on the GOP incumbent but Mazie has never run strong in that region. The Democratic stronghold of Central Maui has NO legislative races in the General Election since Senate President Shan Tsutsui and the two Reps. Speaker Emeritus Joe Souki (Waihee-Wailuku-Waikapu) and Keith Agaran (Kahului-Puunene-Wailuku) were elected outright in the Primary Election. With all the $ the former Governor has, it could be an ugly (beautiful) final weeks in campaign….

Nikki Love’s hot handiwork: Hawaii media suddenly converts Abercrombie to Episcopalian

read … Panic in Democrat Land

Djou Spends $63K, Hanabusa $53K

CB: The Hanabusa spent nearly $53,000 on 209 spots that are airing through the end of the week on all the local broadcast stations. One spot aired Wednesday on KGMB during Survivor and cost $675.

The commercial praises Hanabusa for defending Medicare and funding for public education, ending Bush-era tax breaks for the rich and cooperating with GOP leaders to pass military legislation.

Hanabusa's Republican opponent, Charles Djou, this week spent at least $63,000 on 267 spots that are airing through the end of the week on all the local broadcast stations and a range of Oceanic Time Warner cable networks such as A&E, MSNBC and TNT.

Some of the most expensive spots cost $1,345 each and aired Monday and Tuesday on KHNL during the Voice.

read … Air War

Transit to Grab 19% of city revenue, Plan for $450M Cost Overrun

SA: City taxpayer subsidies of transit operations in Hono­lulu will climb to 19 percent of overall city tax collections after the new rail system launches operations, and that extra cost will require that Hono­lulu limit its spending on other city operations, according to a new report from a federal consultant….

The report specifically cited a decision by the city earlier this year to extend a $450 million line of credit to the rail project, and found the Hono­lulu Authority for Rapid Transportation is now positioned to cope with a rail project cost overrun of up to 10 percent.

HART, in its written comments on the report, suggested that TheBus is mostly to blame for the demand for additional transit subsidies.

According to the HART statement, the report "shows TheBus will account for 67 percent of operating costs, Handi-Van 15 percent and rail 18 percent."

The report also concluded that the city can reasonably expect to pay $173 million in borrowing costs to build the rail project. The city expects to repay all loans and pay for the project in total by 2023.

"This external review is a key element of the Federal Transit Administration's evaluation of Oahu's rail project for our Full Funding Grant Agreement and reinforces the fact that we are on track to receive our FFGA by the end of the year," said Dan Grabauskas, HART's executive director and CEO. "This review validates our current financial plan, which includes a total of $1.55 billion in federal funding, $645 million in contingency funds to cover unforeseen expenses and an ending cash surplus of $193 million. It indicates we're on target."

Full Text: Rail Financial Capacity Report

read … Blame Da Bus

Ing faces new campaign finance complaint

MN: "Ing knew he was under scrutiny after the first complaint, but instead of cleaning up his act he committed new violations of Hawaii campaign spending laws."

read … Felony Ing

Alm: Keep Giving Money to Wind, Solar Scammers

PBN: Speaking to a crowded room of people at a recent energy forum, Alm said that the state relied on oil in the past because, at the time, it was cheap and American.

He says that going forward, Hawaii has to look at a variety of energy sources, including liquefied natural gas, in which he noted that there’s no other hedge as a source than LNG.

But Alm warns that if Hawaii just relies on LNG, it won’t work.

“We did go down that route before,” he said. “[That would just be] simply repeating history, (WRONG WRONG WRONG) [so] in the near-term, LNG has a role to play, [but it’s] not a full replacement.”

Key to this diversified plan is getting as many deals out there as possible, Alm said.

And there are a few deals on the way from Hawaiian Electric (NYSE: HE), including a request for proposals for 200 megawatts of renewable energy, which could include such sources as wind or solar. This RFP and another one dealing with 50 megawatts of geothermal power on the Big Island, are expected to be released shortly.

There are also 25 megawatt RFPs for firm and renewable energy on both Oahu and Maui. No timeframe has been given for these opportunities just yet.

Alm noted that being patient is paramount to the agenda. “Let’s not put absolute deadlines on projects,” he said. (He’s helping Solarhub FIT squatters here.)

read … Solar and Wind Forever?

SA: Laws protecting iwi need review

SA: Two recent court actions related to the disinterment of Native Hawaiian remains illuminate the complexity of Hawaii burial laws, and suggest that a review of the statutes should be considered in the coming legislative session….

Fingers have been pointed in various directions during the 20 months of turmoil over the Kawaiaha‘o project. Without attempting to play the blame game here, what is indisputable is that Hawaii's laws are not equal to the task of providing the best possible guidance in these difficult situations. And clear guidance is what's needed if future developments aren't doomed to similarly chaotic outcomes and delays that should be at least more predictable.

Perhaps cemeteries, active or otherwise, can't always be considered under separate laws. However the law is clarified, legal and cultural experts should confer with legislators to find a more workable solution.

read … Laws protecting iwi need review

Hawaii county clerk, state chief elections officer confident about general election

KITV: the focus has shifted to running a smooth general election on Nov. 6

That was the consensus among Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi and state Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago Thursday, after a nearly two-hour meeting at the state Attorney General’s office in downtown Honolulu.

"Make sure we're all on the same page," Nago told reporters, after emerging from the meeting with Kawauchi by his side. "Make sure that she knows what we're doing, (and) we know what she's doing, and it was a good meeting."

"We're satisfied with what he's done, and we're looking forward and wanting to make sure that together, that we have a well-run election," Kawauchi added. "Our confidence level I think is very good."

BIVN: VIDEO: Hawaii County reacts to state’s elections takeover

Read … Positioning for Credit

RICO: DCCA Closes off Access to Business Complaints

Question: Since January, when the state redesigned the website of the Regulated Industries Complaints Office (RICO), to search for complaints against contractors — — you cannot find details on any complaint. Previously, you could look up basic information about a complaint. Now you have to specify “current” or “archived,” and you still don’t find what used to be there. Why? Their office is supposed to help the consumer, but they seem to be helping licensees instead.

Answer: In an attempt to ward off moves to restrict public access to complaint files, RICO changed the format of posting complaints against a business — basically displaying only bare-bones information.

“The disclosure of complaints information by RICO has been the subject of much discussion and legislation over the past several years,” said Daria Loy-Goto, RICO’s complaints officer.

She pointed to the introduction of House Bill 1212 in the state Legislature in 2010, which would have precluded RICO from reporting any record of complaints against a business and their dispositions. Gov. Linda Lingle vetoed the bill.

read … Who needs a law, we’ll just shut off access anyway!

State rolls out plan to transform business, technology

KITV: "Can you imagine someone keeping a computer alive for 36 years? That's phenomenal," exclaimed the state’s chief information officer, Sonny Bhagowalia.
The technology czar says he was floored to find that decades old relic in the Department of Education.

The DOE, long maligned for a bloated bureaucracy, most recently came under fire because it can't track its transportation costs, or manage bus routes and student ridership, because of outdated systems.

"We keep talking about that the things that are inefficient in the Department of Education, and the whole state. But it's not about the people, it is because they struggle with technology that is well past its time," said Kathryn Matayoshi.

Read more:

CB: 'Sucky Websites' To Become Cool Under State's New Tech Reform Plan

read … No ‘mo Wangs?

With Greenwood on Ropes. Anti-Telescope Activists Squeeze Haleakala Project

CB: Staffers working for Sen. Daniel Inouye have been helping state and university officials make sure that a $300 million solar telescope on Maui gets built, according to internal government emails.

But a Native Hawaiian group that is challenging the project in state hearings and in court say emails released under court order in a public records lawsuit show Inouye's staff and high-level state officials wrongly brought political pressure to bear on a state hearing officer who was considering whether a permit should be issued for the telescope.

Kilakila o Haleakala objects to the University of Hawaii’s Advanced Technology Solar Telescope on cultural and environmental grounds and has filed several lawsuits to stop it. The emails bolster allegations that the senator’s office crossed a legal line by taking up the UH side of the contested case and could aid Kilakila o Haleakala's attempts to derail the project.

The Institute of Astronomy says the ATST is a world-class telescope thats will allow astrophysicists to study solar wind and solar flares and their impact on Earth's climate. The telescope, the largest of its kind, is slated to be built on an 18-acre site known as "Science City," which includes about a half dozen other observatories.

read … Who needs science when there is baksheesh?

Suicide Activists Admit to Four Counts of Attempted Manslaughter

CB: Compassion & Choices Hawaii, a nonprofit organization working to improve care and expand choice at the end of life, received 31 local inquiries in its first year of service.

The figure comes from an annual report released by the Physician Advisory Council for Aid in Dying, or PACAID, a group of local doctors that collaborates with Compassion & Choices Hawaii and can prescribe life-ending medication if necessary.

PACAID has a rigorous eligibility process that applicants must go through, and of those 31 inquiries only seven qualified to consult with a PACAID doctor.

Of the seven, four received a prescription for medication "which they could ingest to end their life and suffering in peace and dignity, at the time of their choosing," according to a Compassion & Choices press release.

As of Thursday, two of the four patients died from natural causes and none had taken the medication.

Reality: Meet the Insurance Executive Behind Assisted Suicide in Hawaii

read … But they are ‘political’ so they can get away with murder

FACE pleased with how a city housing deal has turned out

SA: Let me tell you, the hearing (last week) where we said we were opposed, that started things in motion. … Thursday the mayor’s office called. They wanted to meet with us that day or the next day, so we arranged to meet with them at 5 on Friday. The mayor and Keith Ishida (executive director of the city’s housing office) came, just really kind of pressuring us to get on board, that this is a good deal.

This is when we really finally understood that there is a rental assistance program. We had suggested that such a thing be set up. But at that point it was, “Well, we’ll consider it.” But nobody really said the city already has one. It has a little under $1 million in it, and maybe 60-something people are in the program, funded by parking fees from one of the buildings.

read … FACE

Hawaii’s Greatest Political Dynasty

WP: Territorial Hawaii governor Wallace Farrington was the father of Joe Farrington, who along with his wife, Betty, served as congressional delegates from the state in the 1940s and ’50s. Joe Farrington is credited with bringing Hawaii its statehood, earning the nickname “Statehood Joe.”

read … Hawaii’s Greatest Political Dynasty

Fired Mililani High Workers Sue DOE For Retaliation

CB: Three former Mililani High School cafeteria workers are suing the state for firing them after they whistleblew about a supervisor who they say drank on the job, falsified payroll and gave furlough hours to a substitute employee.

Summer Lee-Vith, Raquel Hanada and Christian Pacheco were wrongfully fired in July after they and other, unionized Department of Education employees reported that their supervisor, Jeff Camara, was engaging in illegal activities, according to a lawsuit filed in Circuit Court last Friday.

The three cafeteria workers are not unionized.

According to the lawsuit, Camara drank on and off campus before, during and after work hours. He also on several occasions falsified the payroll to say that a substitute worked when he or she hadn’t and assigned furlough hours to the substitute in violation of DOE policy.

read … retaliation

Civil Beat Candidate Surveys Published

UH Manoa: A Drug Violation and Two Liquor Violations Every Day 24/7/365

SA: The number of liquor violations inside UH-Manoa dorms and other campus housing jumped from 524 in 2010 to 719 last year, according to an annual safety report released today.

Drug-related violations inside dorms and other campus housing also shot up — from 238 in 2010 to 390 last year.

read … twice as likely to be drunk

Epic Talent LLC Principal Flees to ... Paris, France?

HR: Sean Barriero, a principal in the Miami, Florida-based organization Epic Talent LLC, who claimed he could organize a Stevie Wonder concert at the University of Hawaii, but disappeared with the University's $200,000 deposit after the real Stevie Wonder agent contacted the school, may be on the run.

According to his Facebook page, Barriero claims he left Miami, Florida, and is working in Paris, France. On his Facebook page, he also replaced his headshot with a photo of the 007 movie, Skyfall, and another entry that includes a cartoon about being under FBI surveillance.

Barriero is one of three principals in Epic Talent LLC who may know where the missing $200,000 deposit is.

read … FBI Surveillance?

100-mw OTEC project planned for West Oahu

PBN: OTEC International LLC is working with Hawaiian Electric Co. on a 25-year power-purchase agreement for its planned 100-megawatt ocean thermal energy conversion project, or OTEC, which would be built about five miles offshore from Kahe Point in West Oahu.

If successful, it would be the first commercial-scale OTEC plant in the world and could prove to be a model for other projects of its kind, helping the state reach its renewable energy goal.

The project, which will be split up into four modules of 25 megawatts apiece, would be built at an estimated cost of “hundreds of millions of dollars,” ...

PBN: Coluccio wins last Honolulu Seawater AC contract

read … 100-mw OTEC project planned for West Oahu

Top Iranian Official: Iran Needs “24 Hours And An Excuse” To Annihilate Israel

AFP: Hojjat al-Eslam Ali Shirazi, representative to Iran’s Qods Force for Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, claims that all they need is “24 hours and an excuse” to attack the Jewish state.

“If such a war does happen, it would not be a long war, and it would benefit the entire Islamic umma [the global community of Muslims],” Shirazi said, according to the Post. “We have expertise in fighting wars of attrition and Israel cannot fight a war of attrition.”

read … 24 Hours





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