Tuesday, June 30, 2015

General excise tax surcharge, medical marijuana dispensaries survive Ige's veto pen, sex trafficking, grad student unions, ethanol repeal do not, Rep. Brower hospitalized after alleged homeless attack, Thirty Meter Telescope protesters lose restrooms, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii Gov. David Ige
Gov. David Ige will allow the half-percent excise tax surcharge for rail to be extended for five years to cover the cash-strapped Hono­lulu rail project's estimated $910 million shortfall, and will also allow the first medical marijuana dispensaries to be established in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii County now has an opportunity to add a half-cent local surcharge to the 4 percent state general excise tax, thanks to Gov. David Ige’s notice Monday that he will not veto a bill that includes the other counties along with Honolulu’s GET extension for its controversial rail project. West Hawaii Today.

The Kauai County Council will soon have to decide whether it wants to raise taxes. Gov. David Ige announced on Monday he will not veto legislation that gives the Neighbor Islands the option of levying a tax surcharge on the state’s General Excise Tax (G.E.T.) in order to raise money for transportation. Garden Island.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige announced Monday that he currently plans to veto eight of the 252 bills the Legislature approved this past session. Bills to combat sex trafficking, allow University of Hawaii graduate students to unionize and clarify the order of succession for lieutenant governor were among those he’ll potentially veto. Civil Beat.

Gov. Ige to veto 8 bills. Medical marijuana, rail tax not on veto list. KHON2.

Governor David Ige released his intent to veto list today. He also talked about the bills he will sign or allow to become law. Hawaii Public Radio.

Gov. David Ige on Monday announced his intent to veto two pieces of legislation that involve the University of Hawaii. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige said Monday that he plans to veto a sex trafficking bill that many in law enforcement have said will make it more difficult to lock up pimps and madams. Civil Beat.

Gov. David Ige said he plans to veto a bill that would ban sex trafficking, making the state the only one in the nation without a comprehensive law on the subject. Associated Press.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige said that he intends to veto a bill passed by the State Legislature that would repeal the ethanol facility tax credit and establish a renewable fuels production tax credit. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii is changing a law so that those who practice traditional Hawaiian clean burials won't be accused of abusing a corpse. The idea is being pushed by people who say there's not enough space in cemeteries to accommodate an aging population. Associated Press.

Governor David Ige has informed the Hawai‘i State Legislature of his intent to veto a list of eight bills. Maui Now.

Hawaii will hold its first three-day Cannabis Business Expo on July 17 at the Hawaii Convention Center hosted by the medical marijuana magazine Kaulana Na Pua. Civil Beat.

Any new Hawaii businesses that have not yet signed up for Affordable Care Act qualified health insurance plans may be blocked from receiving federal subsidies until an eligibility determination system is put in place by the state. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

State Rep. Tom Brower, videotaping a homeless encampment in Kaka­ako, was reportedly assaulted by several people Monday afternoon and taken to the Queen's Medical Center, sources told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

A lawmaker involved in an altercation in Kaka'ako ended up in Queen’s Medical Center after videotaping several homeless people in the area on Monday. KITV4.

Jonah Iose, 14, and Isaiah Totoa, 17, said they got mad when state Rep. Tom Brower, also known as the sledgehammer lawmaker, refused to put away his camera after they asked nicely. Hawaii News Now.

A 37-year volunteer reserve officer of the Honolulu Police Department said he saw active-duty officer Vincent Morre assault a patron of an illegal gambling house in September but did nothing about it. Star-Advertiser.

A former probation officer pleaded guilty Monday to felony theft and forgery. Freeman Sasao, 56, a former Oahu circuit court probation officer, was charged with theft and felony offenses in May. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

The Hawaii National Guard is not among the options being discussed to reopen the road up Mauna Kea so construction crews can reach the site of the planned $1.4 billion Thirty Meter Telescope, Gov. David Ige said Monday. Civil Beat.

Last week, the Governor stated that “we are a patient people in Hawaii”, but today David Ige’s patience appeared to be wearing thin. Big Island Video News.

Citing safety concerns, University of Hawaii kept the road to Mauna Kea’s summit closed above the 9,200-foot elevation Monday as workers searched for signs of damage following last week’s Thirty Meter Telescope protest. Tribune-Herald.

The Chinese are coming. So say tourism officials, who are advising island businesses to prepare themselves to handle an influx of tourists who are expected to become one of the most important markets for Hawaii businesses for the foreseeable future. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Opinion: Watching the battle over the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) on Mauna Kea and now the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST) on Haleakala has reached nearly comical proportions. MauiTime.

Kauai

An arbitrator did not exceed his authority when he awarded promotions to three Kauai Police Department officers in 2009, according to a state Supreme Court ruling issued Monday. Garden Island.