Friday, September 7, 2012

Solar panel credits dim Hawaii recovery, Hirono-Lingle debate shows strategies, rail proponents ask Supreme Court to reconsider, Hawaii County sued for defamation, Honolulu PD opens Facebook site to comments, Kauai settles discrimination claim, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Honolulu solar panels courtesy photo
In a sobering message to Gov. NeilAbercrombie and the state Legislature, the state Council on Revenues on Thursday downgraded the state's revenue forecast because of the cost of a renewable-energy tax credit. Star-Advertiser.

It's a case of "green," turning the bottom line "red." Or at least that's a fear of number-crunching economists on the Council of Revenues. KITV4.

U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono says former Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle is key to Republican plans to take over control of the Senate, while Lingle says Hirono hasn’t mastered issues she’d need to vote on as a U.S. senator. Associated Press.

Former Gov. Linda Lingle on Thursday depicted U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono as ineffective in Congress and unprepared for a role in the U.S. Senate, while Hirono said Lingle is campaigning as bipartisan but would vote with national Republicans who do not share Hawaii's values. Star-Advertiser.

In their first meeting since winning their party's nomination Linda Lingle and Mazie Hirono squared off in a face to face debate that at times got testy. Hawaii News Now.

Mazie Hirono, the Democrat, talked a lot about Republicans while Linda Lingle, the Republican, said very little about either party in the first of five debates in their U.S. Senate race. Civil Beat.

A forum hosted by the Japanese Chamber of Commerce Thursday grew contentious as Democratic U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono squared off against her Republican rival for U.S. Senate, former two-term Gov. Linda Lingle. KITV4.

Hawaii's candidates for U.S. Senate faced off this afternoon in the first of several showdowns between now and November's general election. KHON2.

The first U.S. Senate candidate forum for the General Election was conducted today by the Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce. Hawaii Public Radio.

Fired up and ready to go four years ago, Hawaii delegates to the Democratic National Convention were just as enthusiastic Thursday night after President Barack Obama laid out his vision for the next four years in accepting his party's nomination for another term in the White House. Star-Advertiser.

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is an important, quasi-state agency with a huge kuleana — protecting Hawaii's native people and environmental resources and a growing financial portfolio. OHA's nine trustees have a great deal of autonomy. On Nov. 6, five of those seats are up for election. Civil Beat.

Initial unemployment claims in Hawaii decreased by 22.4 percent last week, according to data released Thursday by the Department of Business, Economic Developments and Tourism. Pacific Business News.

State Sen. Donna Mercado Kim has refused a University of Hawaii Board of Regents request to postpone a Sept. 24 hearing into the Stevie Wonder concert debacle. Star-Advertiser.

State Senator Donna Kim expects University of Hawaii President M.R.C. Greenwood and former UH Manoa Athletics Director Jim Donovan to appear before a special senate committee that is looking into the “Wonder Blunder” fundraising fiasco at Manoa. Hawaii Reporter.

The 22nd Annual Hawaii International Tropical Fruit Conference kicks off September 13-16 at the University of Hawaii at Manoa campus on Oahu and continues with a free mini gathering on Maui, Kauai and the Big Island. Maui Now.

Hawaii tourism goes authentic: What's not Hawaiian. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

The Honolulu Police Department has changed its Facebook posting policy after a federal lawsuit claimed the department arbitrarily deletes posts and bans those who make comments that are unfavorable to the department. Associated Press.

Lawyers for the city of Honolulu are asking the Hawaii Supreme Court to reconsider its unanimous decision that shut down construction on the city's $5.26 billion rail line. Star-Advertiser.

Attorneys for Honolulu are asking the Hawaii Supreme Court to reconsider its recent ruling that effectively halted construction on the $5.26 billion Honolulu rail project and could result in millions of dollars in added costs. Civil Beat.

The City and County of Honolulu has filed a motion for the Hawaii Supreme Court to reconsider its August ruling on the rail project. Pacific Business News.

An opponent of a construction project that has displaced close to 600 burials at Kawaiaha‘o Church is seeking a court injunction to stop work given the recent Hawaii Supreme Court decision that halted the city's rail project. Star-Advertiser.

The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled against an appeal by the owners of the Pacific Beach Hotel of unfair labor practice charges, an enforcement order, and a second injunction. Hawaii News Now.

In a one-minute commercial that hit the airwaves this week, Honolulu mayoral candidate Kirk Caldwell's wife Donna Tanoue gets personal. Civil Beat.

Dozens of artists, musicians and street performers in Waikiki have been arrested in recent weeks in response to numerous complaints. KHON2.

Hawaii

Two fired elections employees have filed defamation lawsuits against Hawaii County, the county clerk, the chairman of the County Council and a county-contracted private investigator, alleging information was leaked about an investigation into drinking parties and a private business operation at the elections warehouse that led to their termination. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii County elections administrator and a former senior elections clerk, who were fired in January, have filed separate defamation and negligence lawsuits against County Clerk Jamae Kawa­uchi, Council Chairman Dominic Yagong, the county and a private investigator. Star-Advertiser.

Elections Administrator, Patricia Nakamoto, and former Senior Elections Clerk, Shyla Ayau, filed separate defamation and negligence lawsuits. Hawaii Reporter.

Two employees fired by embattled Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi filed defamation lawsuits against her, County Council Chairman Dominic Yagong, and the county on Wednesday. Hawaii News Now.

Two former Big Island election workers have filed lawsuits against the county and county officials alleging defamation and negligence. KHON2.

The state should establish a “mechanism” to monitor the readiness of the counties to conduct an election and to intervene if necessary, the Hawaii County Council declared on Thursday. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii County Council will revisit its electricity code later this month to address complaints from contractors. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Airlines has the weight of several elected officials — including Gov. Neil Abercrombie and Sen. Daniel Inouye — behind its application for a direct Kona-Haneda, Japan, flight, an official said Thursday. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

The state Land Use Commission on Thursday unanimously approved allowing three parties to intervene in the commission's review of whether or not the landowners developing two proposed shopping centers in Kihei have violated land-use conditions placed on the property. Maui News.

A former Wailuku Main Street Association board chairman said he felt "vindicated" Wednesday after the release of a scathing state attorney general's report confirmed the organization had failed to produce pertinent information to its directors, as he originally alleged. Maui News.

A 2nd Circuit Court judge granted a motion Wednesday to lift parts of a temporary restraining order in the ongoing case over operations at the troubled Ritz-Carlton Club and Residences at Kapalua Bay. Maui News.

Kauai

The County of Kaua‘i has agreed to another settlement with a former deputy prosecuting attorney. Garden Island.

Kauai County paid $120,000 to settle a claim by a former prosecutor who said she was racially harassed because she is Caucasian, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced Thursday. Star-Advertiser.

A federal civil rights agency says Kauai County Prosecutor Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho likely harassed a white lawyer who worked for her based on her race. Civil Beat.

The Office of the Kaua‘i County Auditor released the results of a county road maintenance program audit on Wednesday, noting deficiencies in management and non-permitted use of roads resources. Garden Island.

The Kaua‘i Fire Department on Wednesday received unanimous approval from the Kaua‘i County Council to go ahead with a one-time federal grant to temporarily address a shortage of firefighters in the Lihu‘e Fire Station. Garden Island.

Many local residents may not realize this, but Kaua‘i is the headquarters of the only congressionally chartered botanical gardens in the nation. Garden Island.