Monday, May 13, 2013

Poor oversight at Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, tax revenues up, University of Hawaii in upheaval, Democrats have all the power, lax oversight over food funds, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2013 All Hawaii News
Department of Hawaiian Home Lands property (c) 2013 All Hawaii News
The federal government more than 90 years ago gave Hawaii the responsibility to administer a newly created trust designed to provide homestead lots for eligible Native Hawaiians. But the government never gave Hawaii the federal regulations to govern how the roughly 200,000-acre trust should be administered. Star-Advertiser.

Department Responds To Star-Advertiser Articles. The following is the un-edited opinion piece which was submitted to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser in response to their recent series of articles critical of our Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.

State tax revenues through the first 10 months of Hawaii's fiscal year were 8.4 percent higher than the same period a year ago, the state Department of Taxation said. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii’s economy will likely grow faster than the national average, but not as quickly as previously predicted for 2013 and 2014, state economists said Friday. Associated Press.

As History Is Made, Hawaii Studies Gay Marriage. Civil Beat.

Coming off a turbulent year, the University of Hawaii Board of Regents is preparing to select the next UH president, and observers say the board must take a new tack if it wants to avoid more angst. Star-Advertiser.

As she prepares to end her tenure as the University of Hawaii's 14th president, M.R.C. Greenwood said she is still trying to figure out how consequences from a botched Stevie Wonder benefit concert grew into "a full investigation of all the things the university does." Star-Advertiser.

Deferred compensation and other benefits lift the pay packages for University of Hawaii President M.R.C. Greenwood and UH-Manoa Chancellor Tom Apple past the half-million-dollar mark. Star-Advertiser.

The Democratic Party of Hawaii thoroughly dominates elective office and government at the county, state and federal level. It looks to continue that dominance in 2014, despite contested races for the U.S. Senate and one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Civil Beat.

Youth in Hawaii should have a better chance of getting the help they need with the launch of an online database of youth services that is easily searched by counselors, court officers, parents and the kids themselves. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

The pilot student transportation program that the Hawaii Department of Education plans to roll out to some Oahu schools next school year is expected to do more than just test out an innovative way of buying school bus routes — officials say it'll also restore rides for many of the 2,000 kids who lost out when routes were cut this past school year. Civil Beat.

Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard said it is seeking to fill about 100 apprenticeship jobs. Those hired for the new class will begin their employment in January, with an average starting pay of $19 an hour, the shipyard said. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

When the Hawaii County Council last year took the unprecedented step of dipping into the county’s disaster fund to give the nonprofit Food Basket Inc. an emergency $200,000 appropriation, strict reporting standards were put into place to ensure full accountability of taxpayer money. But a West Hawaii Today investigation has found that none of the reporting requirements in the May 3, 2012, contract were met, despite $199,000 of the emergency money given to the Food Basket, as well as $74,000 from a separate council action.

A state-owned affordable rental apartment complex on Hawaii island where more than half the units are vacant and need major renovations will be given to a Christian missionary training school after an unsuccessful attempt to sell the project about 18 months ago. Star-Advertiser.

Dean John Pezzuto conveyed Friday a sense of determination paired with lingering shellshock as he updated students and faculty on the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy’s failed campaign to fund a permanent building this Legislative Session. Tribune-Herald.

Two South Kona residents are proposing to turn the late Herb Kane’s Honaunau home into a bed and breakfast. West Hawaii Today.

Rob and Cindy Pacheco founded Hawaii Forest & Trail back in May 1993 with a vision to share Hawaii’s natural history while educating about the importance of conserving the environment. Stephens Media.

Maui

House Speaker Joe Souki almost quit after his first term as a lawmaker in 1982. Maui News.

As Maui County's first lady, Ann Arakawa leads a very public life, often seen at her husband's side as Mayor Alan Arakawa appears in parades, gives speeches and meets dignitaries. Maui News.

No unexploded ordnance, discarded military weapons or ammunition were found during a 2011 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers investigation of Kanahena Point, a former military bombing site on Maui's south shore that is now located in a natural area reserve. Maui News.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources today told Maui Now that it would enforce swimming zones at Ka’a Point, following public concerns that kite surfers were endangering beachgoers.

Kauai

Gov. Neil Abercrombie announced last week he will seek a second term, and started campaigning almost immediately, visiting three islands, including Kaua‘i on Monday, in a span of a few days. Garden Island.