Thursday, January 21, 2010

Akaka Bill in peril, legislative session begins, House Speaker says no sales tax increase and other news


U.S. Sens. Daniel Akaka and Daniel Inouye plan to press forward with the Akaka Bill even though a Republican's upset victory in Massachusetts puts an end to the Democrats' filibuster-proof majority in the Senate.

On an opening day drained of traditional pageantry, state House and Senate leaders yesterday challenged their colleagues to tune out special interests and regain public confidence by dealing squarely with the state's $1.2 billion budget deficit.

Speaker of the House Calvin Say is rejecting calls to allow the counties to charge a sales tax to make up for lost revenue.

The state Legislature will consider bills to decriminalize marijuana possession and legalize medical marijuana dispensaries

The military is seeking contractors to install more solar power systems at most of its major installations in the state in what ultimately would be a leap in photovoltaic power generation capability in Hawai'i, officials said.

A mistake by construction workers knocked out phone service to about 17,000 Hawaiian Telcom customers on Kauai Wednesday.

What can $2.69 million in federal stimulus money buy?

Reversing a lower court's ruling, a federal appeals court said a woman's constitutional rights weren't violated when a Taser was used on her after Maui police officers entered her home and arrested her and her husband.

They have already weather decades of intolerance, so what’s a little wind and rain?

With Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann in Washington, D.C. for a round of talks with federal transportation officials about Honolulu’s proposed $5.3 billion, 20-mile elevated-rail project, Gov. Linda Lingle hosted a public forum for a panel of architects to again detail their opposition to the plan.