Thursday, April 24, 2014

Hannemann to run for governor as Independent, state budget negotiations snarled, Kauai group starts anti-GMO ballot initiative, jury says Haleakala trail belongs to the state, Honolulu bus signs bill advances, would-be bidder pans Hawaii County waste reduction plans, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Mufi Hannemann and supporters 2012 file photo © All Hawaii News
Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, hoping voters have grown weary of both Democrats and Republicans, will run for governor as an independent. Star-Advertiser.

Minimum wage, transient accommodations tax, construction spending snag Legislature's budget negotiations. Civil Beat.

Hung up over construction spending, state House and Senate negotiators have pushed deliberations on the state budget to Friday, the deadline to have bills ready for final votes next week before the session adjourns. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers passed a bill out of conference committee Wednesday that will force county police departments to disclose more information about officers who get in trouble for misconduct. Civil Beat.

Victims of child sexual abuse in Hawaii would have more time to file lawsuits against abusers if lawmakers and the governor approve one of two bills pending in the Legislature. In a highly publicized law, victims have been given a two-year window to file lawsuits in cases that passed the statute of limitations, which led to a surge of filings. Associated Press.

A Republican lawmaker in Hawaii is saying the state Department of Education is being secretive about its sex education program. Rep. Bob McDermott is taking issue with the Pono Choices curriculum that’s being developed by the Department of Education. He says it sexualizes the innocent by teaching 11-year-old children about anal sex. Associated Press.

The state Intermediate Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that the Circuit Court can hear a legal challenge to former House Speaker Calvin Say's residency. Six voters in Say's Palolo state House district had questioned his residency, arguing that the Democrat actually lives with his family in Pauoa Valley. Star-Advertiser.

The search for the next University of Hawaii president is advancing, though mostly under the radar as the presidential selection committee led by Carl Carlson prepares to present its final report on Monday to the Board of Regents and Chairman John Holzman. Pacific Business News.

Hawaiian Electric Co. and its sister utilities did not fare well in a new opinion poll that showed 9 out of 10 residents in their service areas believe the companies have slowed rooftop solar installations to protect their profits. Star-Advertiser.

State-of-the-Art Political Campaign Intimacy. Civil Beat.

On Tap at the Hawaii Legislature: April 24. A selective list of bills, resolutions, hearings, briefings, meetings and events for Thursday at the state Capitol. Civil Beat.

Honolulu
Selling advertising space on the sides of Honolulu buses may yet become reality after the City Council Budget Committee voted to revive Mayor Kirk Caldwell's revenue-generating plan Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

On the eve of a critical deadline, a woman Wednesday sued the Roman Catholic Diocese of Honolulu and its former vicar general, Marc Alexander, accusing him of sexually abusing her 30 years ago when she was a minor and he was working at St. John Vianney in Kailua. Star-Advertiser.

TRO against Honolulu police major dropped. KHON2.

Two coqui frogs were captured on Oahu this month, one in Waikiki and one in Kalihi Valley, state Department of Agriculture officials said Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

When the Polynesian Voyaging Society's two double-hulled canoes embark on their unprecedented worldwide sail next month, they aim to spread a message to protect what the group has dubbed "Island Earth." But they'll need the help of environmental leaders back home to put that call for stewardship into practice. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

A would-be bidder for Hawaii County’s waste reduction facility claims the county’s bid solicitation was designed to favor large-scale waste-to-energy incinerators. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Corporation Counsel Lincoln Ashida is taking a job with a private practice May 1, ending a nearly three-decade tenure with the county. Ashida, who has been the county’s top civil attorney for 13 years, is joining the Hilo office of Torkildson, Katz, Moore, Hetherington &Harris as senior counsel. Tribune-Herald.

Big Island Police last week said Randall Hatori died as a result of cardiac arrest not because he was tased. But an independent autopsy obtained by Hawaii News Now said the 39-year-old Kona man's death was a homicide.

A David Ige supporter woke up Wednesday morning to find the campaign signs he had put up Tuesday evening had already been vandalized. West Hawaii Today.

Thousands expected to try out for ‘Wheel of Fortune’ shows on Big Isle. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

A jury on Maui ruled Wednesday that the Haleakala Trail on Maui belongs to the state, dismissing Haleakala Ranch Company’s claim to the land. The decision followed a 14-day jury trial brought by Public Access Trails Hawaii. The Maui-based nonprofit has been advocating since 2011 to secure public access to the historic trail. Civil Beat.

Jurors decided Wednesday that the state, not Haleakala Ranch, owns a section of a historic trail that once ran from Makawao town to the summit of Haleakala. Maui News.

A proposed settlement between Maui County and Neldon Mamuad, creator of the popular MAUIWatch Facebook page, has yet to be agreed on, forcing the county to file a memorandum of opposition against Mamuad's federal lawsuit. Maui News.

Local developer Peter Savio plans to expand his Pagoda hotel brand to Maui with the purchase of the Maui Beach Hotel, an adjacent golf course and a vacant lot where the circa-1953 Maui Palms Hotel once stood. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai
Some Kauai residents are collecting signatures that would put to vote a citizens’ initiative aimed at regulating the GMO industry. Garden Island.