Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Bill to fly homeless home gains traction in Legislature, ethics bills advance, groups sue DLNR over Kauai energy project, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Program To Fly Homeless Back Home Considered By Hawaiʻi Lawmakers.  A bill that will “assist homeless with the ability to secure a flight back to their family in their home State” is moving through the state Legislature. Big Island Video News. KHON2.  

Hawaii Government Transparency Bills Clear A Key Hurdle In The Legislature. Measures that would ban lawmakers from taking donations while in session and increase transparency in Hawaii’s campaign finance system were unanimously approved with bipartisan support Tuesday in the House. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Senators Move To Keep Public Records Secret. The state Supreme Court ruled Hawaii law has no 'deliberative process privilege', but Senators are trying to create one. Budget documents and other records that are now routinely made public by state and county agencies might instead be kept secret under a bill that won tentative approval from a Senate committee on Tuesday. Civil Beat.

How would state legislation on guns stack up to county-level laws? Now that the state Legislature is back in session, lawmakers are considering several measures dealing with guns in public and on private property. Hawaii Public Radio.

Affordable housing proposal that would go after non-residents deemed unconstitutional. Republican Sen. Brenton Awa and other supporters have until the end of the week to come up with an alternative plan, or wait until next year. Hawaii News Now.

Original ‘Ōlelo Hawai‘i versions of law would be held binding with new measure. Senate Bill 16 would require that the Hawaiian or an ‘Ōlelo Hawaiʻi version of a law be held binding if the law in question was originally drafted in Hawaiian and then translated into English.  Hawaii Public Radio.

Bed bugs bill prevents landlords from renting infested units. According to the proposal, the landlord would have to pay for remediation if bugs are found within 60 days of a tenant moving in. KHON2.

No Longer At Odds: Tokuda Hosts Green In DC For Biden Speech. Hawaii Gov. Josh Green was scheduled to attend President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address Tuesday in the nation’s capitol as a guest of an old political rival — U.S. Rep. Jill Tokuda. Green and Tokuda squared off in 2018 while vying to become Hawaii’s lieutenant governor. Civil Beat.

Should Hawaii Tighten Its Work-From-Home Policies For State Employees? Some senators want to ensure the remote workers are properly supervised and are productive. Civil Beat.

Highway Closures Due To Rockfall And Erosion Drive Calls For More Frequent Road Inspections. Almost 168 miles of the state's roads are at risk of damage from major earth movement with remote communities bearing the brunt of the lengthy disruptions. Civil Beat.


Some Kaneshiro case charges late, lawyers argue. Attorneys representing Dennis Mitsunaga, former Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro and four Mitsu­naga & Associates executives indicted for allegedly conspiring to charge a former Mitsunaga employee with felony theft are trying to dismiss some of the charges based on their statute of limitations. Star-Advertiser.

Settlement reached for 4 injured in high-speed police chase. The city and lawyers for four passengers injured in a 2021 near-fatal police chase in Makaha have reached a tentative multi-million dollar settlement. Hawaii News Now.

Navy needs more time for chemical spill report.  The Navy has blown a Monday deadline to provide the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency with details about its cleanup of a Nov. 29 spill of toxic fire suppression chemicals at Red Hill and any past spills of the aqueous film forming foam, or AFFF, at the underground fuel facility, telling federal regulators that it would need another five weeks to provide that information. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Blangiardi, hotels commit to buying more from local farmers.  Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi and representatives from more than 20 hotels in Hawaii today committed to buying more locally grown food as well as collecting and providing data on the tourism industry’s purchasing habits. Star-Advertiser.

Uproar over possible charter school move premature, UH officials say. The possible redevelopment of a University of Hawaii land parcel that could potentially displace the nearly century-old University Laboratory School years from now has upset many of the charter school’s supporters, but UH officials believe the uproar has been premature. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Measure to establish dedicated animal control agency heads to County Council. The nine-member Committee on Governmental Operations and External Affairs on Tuesday voted unanimously to forward Bill 22 with a favorable recommendation to the council for further consideration following a lengthy discussion with officials and hearing from a number of testifiers. West Hawaii Today. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.

Octopus farm accused of offering ‘petting zoo’ experience ordered to shut down. The state Division of Aquatic Resources served a cease-and-desist letter to Kanaloa Octopus Farm last month and said the company is not allowed to have day octopuses under one pound. Hawaii News Now.


Council adopts resolution seeking recognition of emergency dispatchers as first responders
. The Maui County Council adopted a resolution Friday to urge the county administration to recognize emergency dispatchers as first responders. Maui Now. KHON2.

Maui County testifiers passionate over freedom to choose birth practitioner. Fervent testifiers over many hours at Maui County Council sought the freedom to choose birth practitioners regardless of licensure status. Maui Now.


Kaua‘i community groups, Earthjustice  sue DLNR over West Kaua‘i Energy Project. Two Kaua‘i community organizations are suing the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, claiming the department failed to sufficiently examine the environmental impact of a proposed Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative energy project. Garden Island. Kauai Now.  Hawaii News Now.

Kauai County to give away 7,500 at-home COVID-19 test kits in March.
Kauai County announced today a free giveaway of about 7,500 COVID-19 home tests kits at various neighborhoods from March 7 to 9. Star-Advertiser.

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