Monday, May 13, 2019

Marijuana decriminalization, banking sought; Honolulu tax hikes to pay for rail; senator is anti-vaxxer; Kealoha trial starts today; more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy PixaBay Commons
Marijuana PC: Pixabay Commons
People caught with roughly three to five joints won’t be considered criminals under a bill awaiting Gov. David Ige’s signature, but it is unclear how many would actually benefit from the change. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Attorney General Clare E. Connors joined a bipartisan coalition urging Congress to grant the marijuana industry access to the federal banking system. Maui Now.


Condo Associations May Be On Verge Of Gaining More Foreclosure Power. A bill on the governor’s desk seeks to bail the associations out of legal jeopardy and clarify they can take away property even if their bylaws don’t say so. Civil Beat.

HEI CEO tops isles’ salaries at $5.7M. Seven CEOs received total compensation last year of at least $3 million and two of them topped $5 million, according to recent company filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Star-Advertiser.

Report card coming up for Hawaii public schools’ top official. Superintendent Christina Kishimoto is aiming to sharpen the focus to individual campuses with distinct approaches to education. Star-Advertiser.

ACLU Hawaii expands Title IX lawsuit against DOE to a class action lawsuit. A local civil rights group is still pushing to put boys and girls on equal playing fields. KITV.

Commentary: All talk, no political spine in controlling illegal vacation rentals in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.


Three tax increases proposed to cover rail costs. The three tax increases Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell proposed in his budget package earlier this year are designed in part to prepare the city to cover the cost of operations and maintenance of rail, a looming expense that rail critics have long warned would eventually force the city to raise taxes. Star-Advertiser.


The Kealoha Trial Begins. The theft of a mailbox, which federal prosecutors say was staged, opened the door to the largest public corruption scandal in Hawaii history. Civil Beat.

Jury selection to begin Monday in high-profile Kealoha case. The city is warning drivers that traffic will be heavy around the Neal S. Blaisdell Center Monday, as an estimated 430 people are expected on the first day of jury selection for the so-called ‘mailbox’ trial. Hawaii News Now.

The trial of Honolulu's former police chief and his wife, a former deputy prosecutor, is set to begin with jury selection Monday. It's one of the state's most high-profile cases, so how does that affect jury selection? KHON2.


Chinatown grapples with surge in homeless. Morning, noon and night in Chinatown they yell at the sky, mutter obscenities, and sleep in doorways where they sometimes reek of urine — or worse. Star-Advertiser.

 Abandoned boat spills oil into the Ala Wai Harbor. An unknown amount of oil leaked from an abandoned vessel at the Ala Wai Boat Harbor. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Ruderman expresses vaccine concerns. As measles cases grow nationwide and state health leaders monitor mainland outbreaks, one Big Island state senator has expressed more concern about the vaccine than the disease itself. Tribune-Herald.

Commissions and boards could go nonpartisan. A ballot initiative making county boards nonpartisan was advanced Friday by the Charter Commission. West Hawaii Today.

A Hawaii Island charter school gets $12M in funds for new campus atop Kilauea. State leaders set aside $12 million in Capital Improvement Project funds for the construction of a new Keakealani Campus in Volcano Village at the summit of Kilauea. Hawaii News Now.

Students Build Machine To Clear Plastic Bits On Big Island Beach, Among World's Dirtiest. Hawaii’s Department of Land and Natural Resources is involved in a new project to clear microplastics from the state’s beaches, helped by a machine built by Canadian university students. Hawaii Public Radio.


Council OKs higher property tax rates for most. Hotels, short-term rentals see greatest increase over 2018. The Maui County Council on Friday approved property tax rates for the next fiscal year, which includes near across-the-board increases for property owners with hotels and resorts seeing the highest increase. Maui News.

Official: Upcountry water users a priority. Death of controversial water rights bill leaves EMI ditch in question. Maui News.


North Shore high school proposed. The high school is designed as a two-story, 46,888-square-foot structure that would host 600 students, grades 9-12. Garden Island.

No cause of death yet for Kekaha beached whale. Scientists say the whale calf that washed up on the shores of Kekaha Beach in January appears to be a failure to thrive case, with predators involved. Garden Island.

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