Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Federal judge mulls Hawaii gay marriage ban, state doesn't know results of $1B tech credits, Ethics Commission fines 22 for not filing, Honolulu airport in top three for pandemic fears, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright All Hawaii News
Honolulu civil unions protest (c) 2012 All Hawaii News

A federal judge will rule later on Hawaii's ban on same-sex marriage after hearing more than two hours of arguments Tuesday on the legal landscape here and around the country on the controversial topic. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie should remain as a defendant in a lawsuit against the state by two women who want to get married, but he believes a ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, a lawyer representing him said in court Tuesday. Associated Press.

The state auditor says because of a weak law, the state doesn't know the impact of $1 billion spent in tax credits to boost the high-tech industry in Hawaii in areas such as biotechnology, software and alternative energy. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii State Teachers Association President Wil Okabe has accused Gov. Neil Abercrombie of being "infected by the Mainland political strategy of attacking teacher unions" and having better things to spend money on than schools. Civil Beat.

The state Ethics Commission is fining 22 state House and Senate candidates — including several incumbents — $25 each for failing to meet a deadline for filing financial disclosure statements. Hawaii Reporter

The Hawaii state Judicial Council is looking to fill a vacancy on the Hawaii State Ethics Commission created by the departure of Jacqueline Kido. Pacific Business News.

U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii announcement on Tuesday that she received the endorsement of U.S. Rep. Don Young. Hawaii Reporter.

Economic conditions for Hawaii's children have worsened over the past several years, but there have been gains made in education. Associated Press.

State roundup for July 25. Associated Press.

Oahu
Although he's been out of office for a decade, Ben Cayetano is hardly an unknown commodity in Hawaii politics: 28 years in elected office, the last eight as governor, and all three decades of public service as a card-carrying Democrat. Star-Advertiser.

The last time Ben Cayetano was on a ballot was in 1998. He was running for his second term as Hawaii’s governor. Civil Beat.

Less than six months after problems surfaced at the Next Step homeless shelter in Kakaako, residents and some state officials are worried things may be getting worse. Civil Beat.

By early August, drivers will begin steering along reconfigured onramps and offramps on the H-1 freeway between Punahou Street and the Punchbowl area when the state completes a re-striping project that will add a fourth lane in each direction. Star-Advertiser.

Scientists are set to begin testing for geothermal energy potential on Oahu and other Hawaiian islands. Civil Beat.

The Massachucetts Institute of Technology study points to New York, Los Angeles and Honolulu as the three top airports as the most likely places to spread an infectious diseases in the early days of a pandemic. KITV4.

Among the players in the University of Hawaii’s recent fundraising fiasco are: a recently bankrupted local entertainment promoter whose home is now in foreclosure; a Florida firm that only began business in February; and a commercial painting contractor with a history of bad debts. Hawaii Reporter.

The local promoter at the center of the failed UH Stevie Wonder concert -- canceled two weeks ago -- has encountered serious financial problems in recent years. Hawaii News Now.

A Honolulu City Council Committee passed a resolution today urging the State to tighten rules for pig hunting dogs. Hawaii Public Radio.

The city says a Kalihi apartment building has been releasing sewage into a stream for at least two weeks. KHON2.

Hawaii

Pick five Hawaii County residents out of any supermarket checkout line and chances are good that at least one is buying groceries with food stamps. Tribune-Herald.

In a trend that has worsened over the past years, children in Hawaii are more likely to be living in poverty, have parents lacking secure employment and are living in households with a high housing cost burden, according to a national survey released today. West Hawaii Today.

Democrats will have a choice between a former union leader and a first-term County Council member in the state House District 3 primary. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Lifelong residents of rural Olowalu in West Maui say their town wants the proposed improvements and amenities that would come with plans to build some 1,500 housing units in the area. Maui News.

A candidate forum featuring Maui County candidates in contested raced in the Aug. 11 primary election will be televised 6 to 9 tonight on Akaku Channels 52, 53 and 54. Maui News.

Last week, Hui No Ke Ola Pono, a native Hawaiian health care center, installed Lui Hokoana as their board of director’s president along with several new officers at the J. Walter Cameron Center in Wailuku. Maui Now.

Kauai

The Department of Land and Natural Resources announced it will be strictly enforcing state parks rules, including those that prohibit dogs on the beach. Garden Island.

Phyllis Kunimura, Koloa Plantation Days Board President, was pleased people were talking Monday night at The Shops at Kukui‘ula. Garden Island.