Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Honolulu police chief put on leave, Kauai warden cleared in sex therapy program, Hawaii receives $11.5M to fight homelessness, beach time for Obama family, state lawmakers seek more rail details, arrest in slaughter of 17 Laysan albatrosses, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

police department courtesy photo
Police Chief Louis Kealoha and deputies, courtesy Honolulu Police Department
Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha has been placed on paid leave for 30 days after being named as a target of a federal grand jury investigation that involves allegations of corruption and abuse of power. Civil Beat.

Embattled Police Chief Louis Kealoha was placed on paid leave and is no longer involved in running the Honolulu Police Department while his bosses, the Honolulu Police Commission members, decide what to do next, police and commission officials said Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu’s Police Chief voluntarily stepped down yesterday following notification that he’s under federal investigation. Hawaii Public Radio.

Embattled Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha was relieved of his gun, badge and official duties Tuesday and placed himself on leave, one day after receiving a letter from a federal prosecutor notifying him that he is the target of an ongoing public corruption case. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha is stepping down for now. KITV.

Honolulu’s chief of police, Louis Kealoha, placed himself on restricted duty Tuesday and has agreed to go on leave for at least 30 days. KHON2.

Target letter chief received aimed at spurring his cooperation. Hawaii News Now.

A legislator, city councilman, former police officer and criminologist are among those who are calling for a change in leadership at the Honolulu Police Department after its top executive, Chief Louis Kealoha, was placed on paid leave Tuesday following confirmation that he was the target of a federal criminal investigation. Star-Advertiser.

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Hawaii’s share of new federal money to help combat homelessness is $11.5 million. Civil Beat.

Hawaii is receiving $11.5 million in federal grants to combat homelessness as the number of homeless people continues to rise, but the state missed out on a grant for permanent housing that could have brought in another $450,000. Associated Press.

The state Board of Education is aiming to have a new schools chief in place by the summer under a search timeline and process the board unanimously adopted Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

The Board of Education plans to have a new superintendent selected by June under a timeline and search process that it approved Tuesday. Civil Beat.

Blueprint For Education Still Being Refined, School Board Told. The document being prepared by a governor’s task force is expected to complement the Department of Education’s own strategic plan. Civil Beat.

Senators Assigned Committees. Hirono will return to serve on the Senate Judiciary while Schatz will join the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. Civil Beat.

President Obama spent part of his fourth day of vacation in the islands at the beach with family and friends in Waimanalo. Star-Advertiser.

President Barack Obama and his family spent three sunny hours at the beach at Bellows Air Force Station on Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

POTUS Press Pool Prose. A New York Times reporter returns to Oahu to wax poetically about scenic vistas and McDonald’s. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Airlines anticipates a three-month delay on the delivery of three new Airbus A321neo aircraft. Pacific Business News.

Island Air is leasing three new turboprop aircraft, the first addition to Hawaii interisland airline’s fleet since its acquisition early this year by Honolulu investment firm PacifiCap. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii's largest shipper, Matson Inc., is adding service to the Port of Naha in Okinawa as part of its expedited express service between Long Beach, California, and China. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

With another tax-extension request coming their way, state lawmakers have now formally asked that rail’s federal partners brief them directly in Hawaii on the financially troubled project. Star-Advertiser.

A federal agency may have given Honolulu an April 30 deadline to pull a rail financing plan together, but a key state lawmaker said this week she isn’t feeling any pressure to approve enabling legislation by that date. Civil Beat.

City to auction off dozens of vehicles from overflowing tow yard. KHON2.

Some farmers moving into Waianae are trying to reassure their future neighbors they won't pollute the air with toxic chemicals. Hawaii News Now.

Stricter state standards may cause a Waipahu homeless shelter to close its doors. But residents are rallying around the Lighthouse Outreach Center. KITV.

The number of rooftop solar permits issued for Oahu dropped 40 percent in November compared with the same month last year. Star-Advertiser.

A man was arrested Tuesday in connection with the slaughter of 17 Laysan albatrosses at Kaena Point almost a year ago. Civil Beat.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fined Weston Solutions Inc. $25,000 for violating an order issued in 2010. Star-Advertiser.

The Cheesecake Factory Inc., whose bustling restaurant in the heart of Waikiki is one of the company's top-grossing locations in the U.S., is opening its second Hawaii restaurant at DeBartolo Development’s Ka Makana Alii mixed-use shopping mall in Kapolei, Pacific Business News has learned.

Hawaii

A geothermal health study could get more expensive for Hawaii County. Tribune-Herald.

Incoming Police Chief Paul Ferreira tapped into departmental internal affairs to select his second in command. West Hawaii Today.

Aina Lea Inc., which is developing a 1,099-acre Villages of Aina Lea on the Kohala Coast on the west side of the Big Island, has merged with New York’s Origo Acquisition Corp., which is publicly-traded on the Nasdaq. Pacific Business News.

Maui

The upper​ half-mile of the Pīpīwai Trail​ in the Kīpahulu District of Haleakalā National Park,​ including the viewpoint for Waimoku Falls, is now open​ to visitors. Maui Now.

In his executive two-year budget released Monday, Gov. David Ige has included $9.5 million to help fund the takeover of Maui Memorial Medical Center by Kaiser Permanente Hawaii. Maui News.

A Maui business that received a license to sell medical marijuana has revealed plans for its new dispensary, which will include space for a public cannabis education center. Associated Press.

One of the two Maui groups that received a medical marijuana dispensary license showcased its flagship dispensary Friday in Kahului, including its public cannabis education center and retail space. Maui News.

The infusion of drinking water Monday from a new well that has been cleared by the Health Department will alleviate low water pressure issues in East Maui communities caused by a pump problem, the Department of Water Supply reported. Maui News.

Kauai
A federal jury found today that a warden at a Kauai jail did not subject female inmates to sexual humiliation and discrimination, and did not retaliate against a jail social worker who brought the suit. Star-Advertiser.

The warden of Kauai Community Correction Center was found not liable on Tuesday of sexual humiliation and discrimination. Garden Island.

Hoping to spur a resolution of a yearslong dispute over stream water in West Kauai, the state Agribusiness Development Corporation approved a five-year lease to the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative for its Puu Opae hydropower project. Civil Beat.