Voter Guide: Hawaii State and County Ballot Initiatives 2012
NFIB: Hirono Votes 100% Against Small Business
Finding the Blame for What Ails You
Canada Earthquake Tsunami 4’ Wave in Hilo, 5’ at Kahului
Pro-Rail Poll: Caldwell 53, Cayetano 42
SA: The assembled political machine of Democratic Party leaders, local business and construction leaders and island unions has been out to discredit him, weaken his political message and ruin his reputation in order prevent him from stopping the long-planned $5.2 billion rail project. (Now you know how to defeat a progressive.)
The latest Hawaii Poll, released today, shows Kirk Caldwell strongly ahead of Ben Cayetano. The poll, with a margin of error of 4.2 percent, shows that if the election were held today, Caldwell would get 53 percent of the vote and Cayetano, 42 percent.
Rebecca Ward, president of Ward Research, (always gives the customer the results they want) which prepared the survey for the (pro-rail) Honolulu Star-Advertiser and Hawaii News Now, says Cayetano now faces an almost impossible task of rebuilding enough support to win by Election Day.
Cayetano's Filipino base has been pummeled. At the beginning of the campaign, 62 percent of Filipino-American voters supported Cayetano and 58 percent of Filipino voters opposed rail, the Hawaii Poll showed. The support is now down to 51 percent and only 40 percent say rail should be stopped.
"Talking stink" now appears to be Hawaii's most potent form of political communication.
Of course, anything is possible in a campaign — but it appears that Cayetano's campaign has been shredded by a group of Democrats, unions and businesses able to spend millions to force rail forward.
(The intelligent campaign consultant will now study the difference between PRP’s attack on Cayetano’s P4P problems and Mufi’s unsuccessful ‘Beard Contest’ hit piece on Abercrombie. This is the difference between effective and ineffective negative campaigning against progressives. Learn.)
ILind Herds his Sheep: Mayoral “dirty tricks” in Kailua?
read … Just a Ward Poll, the Real Poll is Nov 6
Pro-Rail Poll: Rail Popular 50% – 45%
SA: Three months ago, only 44 percent of Oahu voters polled said work on the rail project should continue, and a bare majority of 50 percent said work should stop.
This month those numbers have flipped, with 50 percent now saying that work on rail should continue, and 45 percent saying it should not. Another 5 percent of those polled said they didn’t know or would not answer the question.
The rail question was asked of 552 likely Oahu voters in the upcoming general election. The poll was conducted Oct. 15-22 by Ward Research Inc. of Honolulu for the Star-Advertiser and Hawaii News Now, and has a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.
Note: Reyes claims Push-Polling has been outlawed in some states. This is false. State Push-Poll laws are disclosure requirements, not bans: FEC preempts New Hampshire "push-polling" law, NH 664.16-a, ME 1014-B, Boston Globe: “The law doesn’t ban push-polling”
read … Rail pulls back into favor among voters
Hawaii Election Workers Deliberately Foul Up Election
Shapiro: The state and Hawaii County knew before the island's primary election disaster that most paid county election workers planned to call in sick with a "blue flu." Only in Hawaii can election workers deliberately foul up an election — the sole purpose of their jobs — with no fear of losing their paychecks.
read … Shapiro
Hooser, Mizuno, Counties Line Up for PLDC Repeal
SA: State Rep. John Mizuno, who voted for the bill, now says he will vote for the law's repeal because it "eliminates the ability of the public as well as many government environmental and building review agencies to have the objective oversight to ensure proper protections and safety for area residents and the environment, prior to a developer starting a project in our state."
The agency's five-member board, comprised of three selected by the governor and two by the Legislature, "will be allowed to exempt any project from many land use, environmental and even building permits," Mizuno says….
However, environmental, labor and Native Hawaiian leaders have angrily denounced the new law and demanded its appeal and abolishment of the corporation after fighting attempts in this year's Legislature to exempt some state construction projects from review. At a hearing of the PLDC's draft administrative rules in August, more than 150 community members overflowed a state building conference room in protest.
Robert Harris, the Sierra Club Hawaii director, called for assurance that the rules won't allow harmful development projects to go forward. David Kimo Frankel, an attorney for the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., expressed concern that the PLDC "is given unfettered discretion to make decisions that affect land for decades."
Abercrombie dismissed the critics as the "usual suspects" who use public hearings to create "conspiratorial hysteria."
Another hearing on the PLDC's proposed administrative rules is scheduled for Nov. 12 at the Department of Land and Natural Resources, its parent agency.
Gary Hooser, who is on leave as the Abercrombie administration's director of environmental quality control to run for the Kauai County Council, responds, "An environmental impact statement is not a permit; it's just a disclosure document. The EIS will say this project is likely to have these impacts, and ‘this is what we suggest that you do to mitigate those impacts,' and it will be lost. … There is no requirement that the developer actually do that. Those requirements are put into place in the permit process, which is what PLDC is exempt from.
"It looks like protection but it's not," Hooser says.
While proponents of the law point out that the "title agency" — the department in control of the land — must agree to the PLDC project, Hooser says, each state agency "is under the direction of the administration," so Abercrombie could order approval of a state project.
Hooser says he agrees with County Council members of the neighbor islands who, as the Hawaii State Association of Counties, called this month for the law's repeal.
"I think right now the state has the ability to develop its lands" without the changes made in the new law, Hooser says. The legislation was "fast-tracked," as "significant" amendments were approved on short notice to the public, he adds, which resulted in a law "created under a cloud, and it needs to be scrapped and go back to the drawing board."
Hooser expresses concern about the state agency moving ahead on projects in violation of county rules or desires.
"Each county develops a plan, and there's lots of community input, and every 10 years Kauai is updated," he says, "and these plans say this is where we want growth, as a community: We want growth in these areas and we don't want growth in those areas, and this is the kind of growth we want. And each county has its own zoning ordinances, and this allows the projects developed by PLDC to bypass all those."
A repeal would require two-thirds of each legislative chamber (to overcome Abercrombie’s veto).
read … Repeal
Lingle Raises $206K in 17 Days, Hirono $460K
PR: Hirono, a Democrat, raised more than $460,000 between Oct. 1 and Oct. 17, according to her latest federal campaign-finance report, and more than $5.1 million overall. Lingle, a Republican, brought in more than $206,600 during the same period and has collected more than $5.4 million overall.
read … Fund Race
Surveys Will Be Used to Justify Next Round of Bus Cuts
SA: The surveys represent the first major effort to update Oahu’s transportation forecasting abilities in 20 years, she said. Once updated, no further updating will be needed for another 10 years, she said, and transit patterns don’t change rapidly. …
The surveys will allow the state and city to make more specific analyses of transportation policies, such as putting in more express-bus service or car-pool lanes. …
Surveys made 20 years ago had much to do with state planning for the H-1, H-2 and H-3 highway projects and for widening of roads, she said.
Best Comment: “Shouldn't Cheryl Soon disclose her conflicts of interest? Isn't she employed by one of Rail's large local contractors? and isn't she the former Director of the City's Department of Transportation Services?”
read … Bus Cuts
Former SB Editor Uncomfortable With Presence of Republicans in Neighborhood
ILind: One thing of note, in the midst of this divisive election season–at least one couple who we invited up the hill last night are Republicans (gasp!!), although they haven’t put up any Romney signs this year. Another couple are likely reliable Democratic votes. Others, I don’t know and wouldn’t want to guess. At our neighborhood level, we relate and form friendships in which partisan politics are somewhat irrelevant. We actually avoid bringing up political issues because we don’t want to tap that level of potential disagreement.
read … What your unbiased Media Really thinks
Usual Assortment of Crackpots, Wierdos Running for Kauai Council
KGI: In the last few years, well intended changes in to the real property tax system has created many inequities and unfairness, according to Bynum. There is nothing more fundamental in government than taking people’s money, and it should be done responsibly, he said.
Councilman Dickie Chang said if council members were elected based on districts, some of them with the most seniority would be able to secure more money for certain neighborhoods, potentially creating inequities.
Hooser paused for second and said, “My attitude? My attitude is not very positive.”
First-term Councilman KipuKai Kuali‘i said the most unique qualification about him is that his is a Native Hawaiian….Before returning to Kaua‘i he lived in West Hollywood, Calif., where he said he learned a lot while working on social issues….
Councilwoman Nadine Nakamura…said there are 60 industrialized nations that have legislation that regulates labeling of food products made with genetically modified organisms….
Councilman Mel Rapozo, self-described “outspoken” and “one of the most misunderstood council members,” said he has always been a proponent of “waste to energy.”
“I’ve always had a love affair with the North Shore since I was kid,” Council Vice Chair JoAnn Yukimura said. (Taylor Camp)
Rapozo said he wishes the county could address education, but “unfortunately,” it can’t ….
read … Council candidates on final stretch
Chronic 911 callers to get aid from 'community paramedics'
SA: "The top 50 callers to 911 are on track to make 1,600 calls this year," said Dr. James Ireland, director of emergency services. "If you're calling 911 and going to the emergency room every couple of days, obviously something's wrong."
More than 70 percent of the top 50 callers have chronic medical issues, which if left untended can lead to emergencies. About a third are homeless. A third have mental illness….
Rather than reacting to 911 calls, the community paramedics will take the initiative, reaching out to these frequent callers in person in hopes of uncovering the source of their problems. The plan for the pilot program is to visit the top 50 callers once a week, whether they are at home, at a shelter or in a park, and guide them to the social and medical support they need.
read … Chronic 911 callers to get aid from 'community paramedics'
Churches' civil unions suit dismissed in federal court
SA: Hawaii's civil unions law has survived a federal constitutional lawsuit filed by two Oahu churches contending that they should not be forced to rent their premises for same-sex civil union ceremonies.
U.S. District Judge Michael Seabright dismissed the suit by the Lighthouse Outreach Center Assembly of God and Emmanuel Temple, the House of Praise.
In a 26-page opinion issued this month, Seabright ruled that the churches did not present an issue for the court to resolve.
The judge said no one has asked the churches to use their facilities for a civil union ceremony and that the churches cannot say when and under what circumstances a request will be made, "if ever."
Any move by the state to enforce the civil unions law against the churches is "highly speculative," he said.
Seabright threw out the lawsuit "without prejudice," meaning that it may be refiled later.
read … Civil Unions
Kauai: Football Players Forced to Risk Death to Save Stupid Birds
SA: The change, however, has reduced attendance.
Young Newell's shearwaters follow the lights from the moon and stars while they fly out to sea during the fledgling season from Sept. 15 to Dec. 15. Bright lights from stadiums and other facilities were disorienting the birds and causing them to circle around artificial lights, said Scott Fretz, former state wildlife program manager who currently serves as wildlife and forestry district manager of the Maui/Molokai Branch.
The shearwaters would fly around until they were exhausted and fell to the ground, where they were preyed upon by cats and dogs or struck by vehicles.
In 1975, Newell's shearwaters were listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. About 90 percent of the seabirds breed on Kauai….
"The fans are just too miserable in the heat so they stay home," said Kelii Morgado, head football coach of Kapaa High School. Misting systems are placed on the sidelines to keep players cool and football players are constantly reminded to hydrate.
Morgado said a lot of players experienced cramping and dehydration during the first season when games switched to Saturday afternoons….
Morgado's wife, Heather, who regularly attends the games, said the stands in the past at Vidinha Stadium were about 70 percent full at the start of a game.
"Now, at the start of the game, the stands are 30 to 40 percent full," she said.
Morgado said she has noticed people arriving after halftime when the sun starts to descend and the weather is cooler.
The retrofitting of lights at the Vidinha Stadium parking lot is in progress and officials are also looking for replacement light fixtures for Kauai War Memorial Conventional Hall's parking lot and walkway.
Lights at other county facilities that could not be shielded are turned off during the fledgling season.
County officials have received complaints by some people who have not been able to play at night at various facilities, including softball fields, tennis courts and basketball courts.
"These types of complaints have become fairly commonplace during fledgling season," Tokioka said.
Sometime during the late-night hours of Oct. 4, an individual or individuals broke the lock and chain on an electrical box at Kalawai Park Softball Field in Kalaheo to turn on unshielded lights. Crew members have since secured the electrical box with a new lock.
read … Misanthropic Green Police