Wednesday, May 26, 2010

DOE administrators seek big pay hikes as Furlough Fridays end, Honolulu crime up, Maui water deal struck, Big Island land sale pau, more top state news

Starting in July, the salaries of Hawaii's top secondary public school administrators could go up, including the state superintendent's — to as high as $240,000 from $150,000.

With only one more day of class left in the school year, Governor Lingle announced today that school furloughs are over.

Furlough Fridays at Hawai'i public schools are a thing of the past

After enduring a school year cut short by 17 Furlough Fridays, public school students and their parents, along with principals, teachers and other education officials, head into next year with a complete academic calendar once again.

What started last September as a breakthrough by Gov. Linda Lingle and educators to reduce labor costs and help with the state's budget deficit ended yesterday with a face-saving compromise to cancel teacher furloughs and return students to the classroom for a full calendar next school year.

Furlough Fridays are over. Governor Linda Lingle made the announcement around 4:15 in a press conference Tuesday afternoon at the State Capitol.

As you might expect, most parents are thrilled to see the school furlough saga come to an end, although many are wondering why Hawaii's leaders couldn't figure it out months ago.

Frozen Investments Could Have Helped Solve State Budget Crisis

Gov. Linda Lingle on Tuesday afternoon announced the state has reached an agreement to end school closures on furlough days next year.

Gov. Linda Lingle on Tuesday spent a little more than an hour with supporters of civil unions in a private meeting in her office. The legislation would provide rights similar to marriage to unmarried couples.

Property crime in Honolulu increased 5 percent in 2009, ending a six-year streak of declining offenses in the category. Authorities said the increase is disappointing, but probably won't jeopardize Honolulu's standing as the nation's safest large city.

Once it was Cash for Clunkers. Now it's rebates for refrigerators, and the chance to save $250 while going green is proving just as irresistible to Hawaii consumers.

On the day new U.S. Rep. Charles Djou was formally sworn into office in Washington, D.C., a handful of candidates offered their services as potential candidates to fill out the remainder of his term on the City Council.

State Commission on Water Resource Management members reached a historic compromise late Tuesday night, returning some water to six East Maui streams, but leaving both sides in the water dispute dissatisfied.

Mayor Billy Kenoi took the offensive Monday, calling a news conference urging the Hawaii County Council to make public its budget-cutting plans.

With the administration giving up for now on selling Hamakua lands, one councilman wants to revoke the county's authority to do so without future council approval.

A hearing on the voter registration of Maui Council Member Sol Kaho'ohalahala will be held in Lanai City today

Koloa and Po‘ipu house some of the richest archaeological sites in the entire state. Despite widespread development, new sites are still being discovered there.