Thursday, September 3, 2015

Hawaii DOT sues for failed traffic computer system, Honolulu council may re-vote on rail following ethics charges, homeless veto overturned, Maui telescope protesters want jury trials, Kauai to keep council term limits, WWII anniversary commemorated, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Fathers are better dads in Hawaii. At least that’s what it looks like in some key areas, according to a new study on fatherhood in Hawaii, which found that island dads are better off than their mainland counterparts in education, employment and income. Star-Advertiser.

The state Department of Transportation is seeking “tens of millions” of dollars in damages from an information technology consulting company that allegedly defrauded the state in a failed contract to set up a new computer system for the state Highways Division. A lawsuit filed Wednesday also alleges the company, Ciber Inc., “used lobbyists and exercised inappropriate political influence” to persuade the state to continue making payments to the company, and to counter pressure from state transportation officials who were trying to enforce the terms of the contract. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation filed a lawsuit Wednesday against Ciber Inc., alleging that the consulting firm “defrauded the State and engaged in other misconduct.” The state is seeking tens of millions in damages, including more than $8 million in fees it said it paid to Ciber, according to a press release from the DOT. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation has filed lawsuit against Ciber Inc. alleging the consulting firm defrauded the state and engaged in other misconduct on a project to implement new software for the department’s Highways Division. Associated Press.

More than 700 people attended the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the official end of World War II on Wednesday aboard the battleship Missouri, where the Japanese surrender was signed on Sept. 2, 1945. Star-Advertiser.

U.S. officials gathered on a decommissioned battleship in Pearl Harbor to mark the 70th anniversary of World War II’s end. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz and U.S. Rep. Mark Takai of Hawaii joined U.S. Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Scott Swift at a ceremony Wednesday. Associated Press.

The state Public Utilities Commission wants to know how Hawaiian Electric would be affected if, hypothetically, there was a major disaster at one of NextEra Energy’s nuclear reactors in Florida. Civil Beat.

The acquisition application that NextEra Energy Inc. and Hawaiian Electric Co. sent to Hawaii regulators in January doesn't apply anymore, the head of the Florida utility giant’s Hawaii operation said. Pacific Business News.

Hilo Hattie, one of Hawaii's well-known retailers, has laid out its reorganization plan to to pay off some of its creditors and bring the company out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy for a second time after selling its Nimitz Highway headquarters to the landowner last month. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

Honolulu City Council Chairman Ernie Martin said he's considering holding a re-vote on nearly a dozen rail transit-related bills tainted by ethical conflicts by former city Councilmembers Romy Cachola and Nestor Garcia. Hawaii News Now.

An estimated 20,000 Oahu homeowners would soon be able to create second housing units on their properties that they can rent out to people after the Honolulu City Council approved a bill Wednesday that allows for accessory dwelling units. Star-Advertiser.

For the second time in recent months, the Honolulu City Council voted Wednesday to override Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s veto of a bill that expands Oahu’s “sit-lie” ban — this time to two Chinatown pedestrian malls. Star-Advertiser.

Sit-lie bans on Oahu are poised to expand to two Chinatown pedestrian malls in downtown Honolulu.  The City Council voted 7-2 Wednesday to override Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s veto of Bill 44, which extends the sit-lie prohibition to College Walk Mall and Kila Kalikimaka Mall. Civil Beat.

The Honolulu City Council overturned the Mayor’s veto today on a ban on sitting and lying in downtown malls Hawaii Public Radio.

Kakaako homeless camp attracting flies. Flies breeding in rotting garbage, human waste. KITV4.

Last week, as Gov. David Ige’s leadership team continued to mull over how to address Oahu’s homelessness crisis, a new idea emerged: to use portable, modular buildings — originally designed as classrooms — to temporarily house homeless people. But, if history is any indication, Ige and his colleagues will likely have to contend with some stiff community resistance before they can put any of the portables to use regardless of where they decide to put them. Civil Beat.

Lawyers representing Ewa Beach homeowners and the developer they sued disagreed in court Wednesday over the move to develop a recreational lagoon instead of a marina in the Ocean Pointe and Hoakalei area. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii regulators — for the third time — delayed making a decision on a “glass rule” for Kakaako high-rise projects regarding an issue with developer OliverMcMillan’s Symphony Honolulu mixed-use condominium tower, a spokeswoman for the developer confirmed to Pacific Business News.

A state board is still not sure what to do about a developer building a condominium tower in Kakaako with glass siding that doesn’t comply with a rule governing development in the area. Star-Advertiser.

The hot and humid weather has taken a dangerous toll at our schools. A teacher at Ewa Beach Elementary School drove herself to the hospital Tuesday for heat exhaustion. KHON2.

Hawaii

The Hawaii County Council wants Congress to sponsor a constitutional amendment curbing the ability of corporations to pump unlimited money into elections. West Hawaii Today.

A team of Hawaii and mainland scientists is seeking to take out some of the uncertainty surrounding lava flows as part of a three-year study that could help Hawaii Island residents decide when they should evacuate. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii County Department of Water Supply is working to repair Halekii deep well after it failed on Monday. The breakdown has customers in South Kona on water conservation. West Hawaii Today.

Kuleana and Lanakila Mangauil. The third part of our profile on the Mauna Kea movement leader examines Mangauil’s interpretation of his duty to protect the land, his people's culture and their right to self-determination. Hawaii Independent.

Maui

Two Kihei residents have petitioned the state Department of Health for stricter rules and greater oversight of agricultural burns - including cane burning by Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. - that call for the health director, not the farmer, to make daily calls on whether to burn or not. Maui News.

Fourteen of the 20 protesters arrested July 31 at the Central Maui Baseyard are asking for jury trials on charges of failing to disperse when a convoy of wide-load trucks was leaving to deliver parts for the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope at the Haleakala summit. Maui News.

The DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife has just released a draft management plan for the Nakula Natural Area Reserve on Maui that is expected to help guide restoration and management activities there for the foreseeable future. Maui Now.

Kauai

Term limits for councilmembers will stay in place. As expected, a plan to repeal term limits fell one vote short in the Kauai County Council on Wednesday. Garden Island.