Thursday, June 7, 2012

Hawaii can regulate beach weddings; Native Hawaiian tax breaks, incarceration at issue; big bucks budgets pass Honolulu, Maui councils; Hawaii council challenges aerial hunting, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii can regulate weddings on public beaches without violating people’s right to marry, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday. Associated Press.

The state of Hawaii has the right to require a permit for commercial weddings on the state’s beaches, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday. Pacific Business News.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld Hawaii's right to regulate commercial weddings on public beaches. KITV4.

News agencies are reporting that the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday upheld the State of Hawaii’s right to regulate commercial weddings on public beaches. Maui Now.

The Native Hawaiian Justice Task Force is gathering information on why Native Hawaiians are disproportionately represented among the state’s prison population. Associated Press.

In direct response to concerns about the disproportionate number of Native Hawaiians who are in prison in Hawai’i and the U.S. mainland, members of a newly-created task force are using their collective reach and access to engage policymakers in the issue, build public awareness and identify and support comprehensive solutions. Garden Island.

Final Brief In Case Challenging Hawaiian Homes Property Tax Exemption As Racial Discrimination: SG's Assertion That HAWSCT Decision Was One Of State Law "Dead Wrong." Hawaii Reporter.

Former Gov. Linda Lingle, candidate for U.S. Senate is about to get her own cable television channel. KHON2.

The Democratic Party of Hawaii appears poised to take legal action as early as this week to stop Laura Thielen from running for the state Senate. Civil Beat.

Centuries ago Hawaiians used knowledge of the stars and planets to guide their daily lives. King Kala--kaua’s Interest in astronomy helped scientists around the world measure our solar system. Hawaii Public Radio.

Honolulu resident Jim Nabors, best known for his 1960s television role as Gomer Pyle, was among the first patients in Hawaii to get a heart valve replacement using a new procedure that avoids the stress of open-heart surgery. Star-Advertiser.

State roundup for June 7. Associated Press.

Oahu

The Honolulu City Council voted 8-1 on Wednesday to approve a $1.96 billion operating budget and $588.7 million capital improvements budget for the new fiscal year that begins July 1. Star-Advertiser.

The message from Wednesday's marathon Honolulu City Council hearing was clear: this nine-member body is decidedly pro-rail. KITV4

The Honolulu City Council wasted little time passing the $620-million Capital Budget bill Wednesday. The biggest dollar signs went toward improving Honolulu roadways.KHON2.

Honolulu City Council member Romy Cachola is questioning whether a public relations consultant hired by a city contractor to promote Honolulu rail inappropriately used public money to lobby him to support the controversial $5.2 billion project. Civil Beat.

Honolulu City Council Chair Accuses Mayor of 'Quid Pro Quo' Politics on Sewage Project. Civil Beat.

A state agency is moving closer to privatizing a $22 million renovation and expansion of Kewalo Basin to better serve commercial and recreational boaters. Civil Beat.

The general manager of Turtle Bay Resort has been appointed to the Oahu Burial Council, making it possible for the committee to meet for the first time after a five-month hiatus. Civil Beat.

About 150 opponents of a plan to expand Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu's North Shore demonstrated at Honolulu Hale Wednesday in an effort to raise public awareness and urge the City Council to reconsider decades-old approvals for the estimated $1.2 billion project. Star-Advertiser.

The man challenging Honolulu City Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro in November's election said there's been a "mass exodus" of lawyers from the office since Kaneshiro took over about 18 months ago. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transit will have the ability to tap up to $450 million via low-interest city loans under a bill passed by the City Council today. Star-Advertiser.

Incoming University of Hawaii Manoa Chancellor Tom Apple, who's already being paid more than the UH president, will also receive car and relocation allowances, according to Apple's employment agreement. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii

Council Chairman Dominic Yagong found plenty of support Wednesday for two bills challenging the state Department of Land and Natural Resources by taking up the cause of island hunters. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii County Council moved one step closer toward asking voters whether they support the creation of a Game Management Advisory Commission. They also approved a bill to ban the practice of eradication by aerial shooting in the county. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii County Council passed two geothermal bills through their first reading Wednesday evening, clearing the way for final approval at a later meeting. Tribune-Herald.

Kahili ginger, a beautiful and fragrant, but prolific ornamental species, has taken root atop Kohala Mountain, slowly destroying the area’s native Hawaiian forest that many rare flora and fauna not only call home, but also require for survival. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

The Maui County Council this morning unanimously passed on second and final reading a $549.9 million spending plan for fiscal 2013, which includes property tax hikes and water rate and bus fare increases. Maui News.

Longtime County Council Member Joe Pontanilla will challenge attorney and incumbent Gil Keith-Agaran for the Central Maui state House seat in the Primary Election. Maui News.

A Maui County Council committee Tuesday reversed itself and decided to add 390 acres near the Makena Resort's golf course to future growth boundaries for South Maui. Maui News.

The Maui County Department of Environmental Management will begin work on a second sewer line replacement project in West Maui this month. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauai County Council members have been pressing the administration for years to step up recycling efforts on the island as the Kekaha Landfill nears capacity. Garden Island

Molokai

Molokai’s ocean resources are fragile, and many say they’re rapidly disappearing. Molokai Dispatch.