Showing posts with label Common Cause. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Common Cause. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Honolulu grocers hit by COVID-19, Young Brothers threatens to stop interisland shipping without 47% rate hike, Kauai park shut down after bad behavior, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2020 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Coconut climber at Polynesian Cultural Center ©2020 All Hawaii News
COVID-19 leads to layoffs at The Polynesian Cultural Center. Approximately 30% of the 260 full-time employee workforce may be reduced by September 26, 2020. KITV4.

Shipper asks for ruling on rates by Aug. 17. Young Brothers says it may be forced to discontinue interisland services and furlough employees if the state Public Utilities Commission does not approve its emergency request for a 47 percent rate hike by Aug. 17. Maui News.

Gov. Ige weighs in on Hawaii CARES Act spending. Governor Ige is still deciding whether to sign or veto a bill that outlines how lawmakers want the state’s $635 million in CARES Act money to be spent. KHON2.

Economy: The First ‘Cliff’ Is Almost Here And A Second One Is Looming. Billions in federal relief dollars run out this week while community and political leaders work to soften a second possibly worse blow at the end of the year. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Has Huge Stake In Negotiations Over Federal COVID-19 Aid. Uncertainty surrounds the $600-per-week unemployment payments, virus testing and even public worker furloughs. Civil Beat.

Green talks tourism as virus cases continue uptick. Lt. Gov. Josh Green said Tuesday there’s “good news, bad news” about the possibility of reopening Hawaii to tourism. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii residents urged to take precautions as clusters of coronavirus cases proliferate. Dozens of COVID-19 patients have been hospitalized following numerous coronavirus outbreaks, including one in Kalihi among Pacific islanders living in large multigenerational households. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Electric points to financial assistance options as disconnections to resume Sept. 1. Hawaiian Electric is pointing customers to several financial assistance options for those having trouble paying bills during the pandemic. Hawaii News Now.

Workplace Drug Tests Show Less Use of Some Types of Drugs. Workplace drug tests taken in Hawai‘i during the pandemic show a decrease in the use of amphetamines, cocaine and opiates, while marijuana use has been on the rise. Hawaii Business magazine.

Coalition to consider legal action if state does not increase number of polling places. Three voting rights groups have given the state and counties a Friday deadline to commit to increasing the number of voter service centers or face legal action. West Hawaii Today.

Super PAC Spends $188K To Get Kahele To Congress. The nonpartisan With Honor Fund has ties to Jeff Bezos of Amazon and other billionaires. Civil Beat.

Education Spending Drives Races For Hawaii Legislature. The pandemic is spurring candidates to focus on how the Legislature and DOE will use limited funding for safety measures and access to distance learning. Civil Beat.


Hawaiian Airlines plans to shrink 15% to 25%. Hawaiian Airlines is moving to raise cash and reduce staffing after reporting a significant second-quarter loss that continued the financial harm that emerged earlier this year from COVID-19 fears and containment policies. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Airlines to cut workforce. During the company’s second quarter earnings call, CEO Peter Ingram said the recently completed quarter was incredibly challenging citing the 14-day quarantine as well as the recent cluster within the company. KHON2.

After dismal earnings report, Hawaiian Airlines expected to move ahead with layoffs. The company says it must move forward with layoffs after losing more than $100 million in its 2nd quarter earnings report. Hawaii News Now.

Mysterious unsolicited seed packets from China received by Hawaii residents. If you get an unsolicited packet of seeds from China, don’t open it. That’s the message from agriculture officials after multiple people received the mysterious packages. Hawaii News Now.


Eight Thai Soldiers Test Positive For COVID-19 After Training In Hawaii. They were participating in the Army’s first large-scale exercise in Hawaii since the pandemic began. Civil Beat.

8 Thai soldiers have virus following training in Hawaii. Asian media reported that eight out of 150 Thai army soldiers tested positive for the new coronavirus days after returning to Thailand from participation in a big Schofield Barracks field training exercise on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.


Hawaii sees 47 new coronavirus-related cases as statewide total grows to 1,757. The new cases included 46 on Oahu and one in Maui County, according to the state Department of Health’s daily tally. Star-Advertiser.

DOH reports 28 new COVID-19 cases, pushing statewide total to 1,711. All of the cases were on Oahu, according to the COVID-19 Joint Information Center. West Hawaii Today.


Mayor proposes 3-week shutdown of bars, mandatory mask wearing outside. In a bid to tamp down a worsening surge in new COVID-19 cases on Oahu, Honolulu’s mayor is proposing to shut down all bars on Oahu for three weeks, require mask wearing outdoors at all times, and limit gatherings to 10 or fewer people. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Mayor Wants Bar, Mask Crackdown. A recent rash of COVID-19 cases on Oahu has Mayor Kirk Caldwell asking the governor’s permission to close bars and impose more strict mask requirements. Civil Beat.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell seeks 3-week closure of Oahu bars. Oahu bars would be forced to shut down for three weeks to allow the city time to “recalibrate” and come up with tighter regulations to curb the spread of COVID-19 under a revised guideline that Mayor Kirk Caldwell is seeking from Gov. David Ige. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Caldwell asks DOH to be upfront with COVID-19 cases linked to businesses. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said in a press conference Tuesday morning that he wants the Hawaii Department of Health to be more upfront with COVID-19 cases. KHON2.

Some call mayor’s proposed expansion of mask mandate government overreach. Hawaii News Now.

City employee in Dept. of Design and Construction tests positive for COVID-19.  City officials confirmed Tuesday that an employee who works in the Frank Fasi Municipal Building has tested positive for coronavirus. Hawaii News Now.


3 Hawaii Costco employees contract coronavirus. Three Costco workers have tested positive for the coronavirus — two in Hawaii Kai and one in Iwilei. Star-Advertiser.

3 Costco employees at 2 Oahu locations test positive for COVID-19. Internal memos confirmed that at least three employees tested positive — one in Iwilei and two others in Hawaii Kai. Hawaii News Now.

Another Foodland employee tests positive for coronavirus. Another Foodland employee has tested positive for the coronavirus, this time at Foodland Farms Pearl City. Star-Advertiser.


Father, son with COVID-19 forced into facility after breaking quarantine. A father and son who have tested positive for COVID-19 were ordered into quarantine at a facility on Tuesday after being detained at a strip mall in McCully. The state Health Department relied on a rarely-used authority to detain the two. Hawaii News Now.

McCully Shopping Center shuts down after father and son with COVID-19 were arrested in the parking lot. A busy shopping center put on lockdown on Tuesday after a father and son with COVID-19 were arrested for violating quarantine. KITV4.

Oahu businesses want $100M in city grants to pay for rent. A Hawaii business coalition is seeking $100 million in federal coronavirus aid from the city to benefit commercial property landlords and tenants. Star-Advertiser.

New Super PACs Pour Money Into Honolulu Races. The independent expenditure committees are taking out ads for mayoral and council candidates as voters cast their mail-in ballots. Civil Beat.


City buys McCully walk-up for low-income rentals. The city recently purchased a McCully Street apartment building that it will rent out to lower-income families, Mayor Kirk Caldwell said Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Buys 10-Unit Building For Affordable Housing. As of 2019, Oahu needed over 22,000 new housing units by 2025, according to the state. Civil Beat.

City offers affordable housing with McCully Street property. The city unveiled a new affordable housing project on Tuesday. KHON2.

State Legislature sides with Nanakuli landfill opponents. State lawmakers recently passed a highly contested bill that would stop a planned expansion of a landfill in Nanakuli operated by PVT Land Co. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Hundreds who lost homes in 2018 eruption could be eligible for up to $230K. Former Puna residents whose homes were destroyed by the 2018 Kilauea eruption can choose to sell their properties to the county through a nearly $80 million recovery program. Tribune-Herald.

Kona Physician Assistant Program Campus Approved. The new Kona campus of the MEDEX Northwest Physician Assistant Program at the University of Washington "will be a game changer" for Hawaiʻi, says Lt. Gov. Josh Green. Big Island Video News.

A whale of a summer: research project continues in Hawaiian waters despite COVID. A unique partnership between marine biologist Dr. Robin Baird at Cascadia Research Collective and Colin Cornforth – the owner of Kona tour company Captain Zodiac – has ensured their summer field project has had a fruitful 21st year. West Hawaii Today.


Mayor is asking residents to limit interisland travel. As COVID-19 cases set daily records on Oahu along with an uptick on Maui, Mayor Michael Victorino is advising Maui County residents to postpone interisland leisure travel at this time and only fly between islands for essential business. Maui News.

Man Dies After Taser Struggle with Maui Police, Cause of Death is Undetermined. A 30 year-old Massachusetts man is dead following a taser struggle with Maui police in which he allegedly disarmed an officer of a Taser and proceeded to use the device on three different officers. Maui Now.

Stolen Oysters on Maui are Unfit for Human Consumption. Oysters that were destined for a research project on Maui were stolen last week and may have subsequently been sold at below-market prices on island. Maui Now.


HLRB hears temporary workweek trial. County of Kaua‘i Managing Director Michael Dahilig testified that the temporary four-day, 10-hour work schedule was an operational decision necessary to reduce movement and the spread of coronavirus yesterday in a Hawai‘i Labor Relations Board hearing on merits via Zoom. Garden Island.


Large gatherings, trucks driving over Hawaiian burial sites, widespread defecation force closure of Polihale State Park on Kauai. The Department of Land and Natural Resources announced it will close Kauai’s Polihale State Park indefinitely, citing bad behavior of residents, with abuse, illegal gatherings and camping. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai State Park Closed Indefinitely. State Parks Administrator Curt Cottrell said more state parks could face closure as the agency struggles to enforce park rules during the pandemic. Civil Beat.

State closes Kauai’s Polihate State Park, blaming ‘bad behavior’ of locals. The state is closing Kauai’s famous Polihale State Park indefinitely. Hawaii News Now.

Polihale State Park on Kauai closed due to people’s bad behavior. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources says it’s impossible to enforce park rules because of its size and isolated location. KHON2.


Getting the vote out. The Voter Service Center was scheduled to open Monday, but that opening was delayed by the passage of Hurricane Douglas close to Kaua‘i late Sunday night, and into the early hours of Monday morning. Tuesday, the VSC opened to the public starting at 8 a.m. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


Hawaii state Capitol © 2017 All Hawaii News
HB 375, CD 1 (Act 214, Session Laws of Hawaii 2017) has been selected by the League of Women Voters and Common Cause Hawaii for their 2017 "Rusty Scalpel" award. The "Rusty Scalpel" award recognizes enactment of a bill whose subject has been substantially amended without opportunity for legislative review as required by the Hawaii Constitution.

Article III, Section 14 of our State Constitution provides “Each law shall embrace but one subject which shall be expressed in its title.”  HB 375 was titled “Relating to Taxation”.  

When introduced, HB 375 proposed amending income tax rates to negate any income tax liability for those at or below poverty thresholds. The Senate Ways and Means Committee was the first to drastically amend the bill, gutting its contents, and replacing it with provisions to repeal the sunset date for the refundable food/excise tax credit. Then during Conference Committee, the bill was drastically altered to appropriate $1 million, subject to a dollar for dollar match by the private sector, to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, working in conjunction with the Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association, for projects to address homelessness in tourist and resort areas. 

Corie Tanida, of Common Cause Hawaii said, “While addressing homelessness in Hawaii is important and commendable, an ‘appropriation’ is not the same as ‘taxation’.  The final version of this bill doesn’t pass the relatively ‘low bar’ of having the bill’s subject match the bill’s title.”

Article III, Section 15 of our State Constitution provides that “No bill shall become law unless it shall pass three readings in each house on separate days.”  The unambiguous intent is to provide  the House and Senate, separately, the  opportunity to thoroughly review every single bill.  Amending a bill’s subject in conference committee without such review ignores this Constitutional requirement.

According to Ann Shaver, President of the League of Women Voters of Hawaii, “The 2017 session was a ‘Good News, Bad News’ situation.  HB 375, CD 1 was the only real candidate for our 2017 ‘Rusty Scalpel’ award.  On the other hand, HB375, CD1 was the worst we’ve seen in the five years we have presented this award.”  On July 12, 2017, without the Governor’s signature, HB 375 became Act 214, Session Laws of Hawaii 2017.  


The League of Women Voters of Hawaii is a non-partisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy. For more information, visit

Common Cause Hawaii is a state chapter of the national Common Cause organization. Common Cause is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to protecting and improving Hawaii’s political process and holding government accountable to the public interest. For more information, visit

Monday, June 30, 2014

Schatz attacks Hanabusa attack ad, Honolulu homeless may get one-way ticket to mainland, fight for breastfeeding rights, Maui mayor stifles staff, nursing homes not inspected, groups fear disclosure veto, turtle selfies banned, NASA test flight, brown water on Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii Senate race 2014
Brian Schatz, Colleen Hanabusa
U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz on Saturday knocked U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa for what he called the first negative advertisement in their Democratic primary, a postcard that reminds voters of Schatz's support for the Bipartisan Budget Act, which extended cuts in Medicare. Star-Advertiser.

A Disregarded Request From a Beloved Senator Shakes Up Hawaii’s Primary. New York Times.

The state has failed to inspect more than a third of Hawaii's 45 nursing homes within the time frame required by federal law, reflecting an oversight gap that some experts say could come at the expense of the facilities' vulnerable residents. Concerned about the problem, the federal government is threatening to fine the state as much as $121,000 if the timeliness requirements are not met by the end of September. Star-Advertiser.

Many Candidates Vie for Three At-Large Seats on OHA Board. In all, five posts are up for election this year for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees, which is increasingly under the spotlight. Civil Beat.

How much federal money goes toward Native Hawaiian programs? About $34.9 million per year, according to our preliminary analysis. Hawaii Independent.

Hawaii's health insurance exchange is making a final push to capture a share of the small-business market as the bulk of groups renew policies in July. Despite significant computer glitches that initially stunted its growth, the Hawaii Health Connector is aggressively marketing the Small Business Health Options Program, known as SHOP, the piece of the Affordable Care Act intended to increase insurance options for workers. Star-Advertiser.

Just when they’re needed to help students master newly required skills, librarians seem to have become a low priority at many schools, particularly at the elementary level. Civil Beat.

Two members of the University of Hawaii Board of Regents have resigned after state lawmakers unanimously passed a bill requiring public financial disclosures from people serving on more than a dozen state boards and commissions. Associated Press.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate State Senator David Ige is criticizing  the governor’s notice of intent to veto SB2682, which would require the disclosure of financial statements by members of 15 state boards and commissions,  including the Public Utilities Commission, University of Hawaii Board of Regents, Board of Education, Hawaii Community Development Authority, Board of Land and Natural Resources and others. Hawaii Reporter.

Commentary: League of Women Voters Debunks Governor’s Take on Disclosure Bill. The organization doesn't accept the idea that women would be harmed by the law, and hopes it would help the governor vet nominees. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Governor’s Veto Threat on Bill Shows This Is Not a ‘New Day’ Neil Abercrombie's argument that a transparency bill will harm women is sexist. Civil Beat.

Respect the Locals: Sea Turtle Selfies Are Uncool — and Illegal State, federal officials remind public that harassing honu is against the law and can result in a fine. Civil Beat.


A year after the state declined to start up a pilot program to send the homeless back to the mainland, the business community in Waikiki might step up and fill the void. Rick Egged, president of the Wai­kiki Improvement Association, said his organization will be looking to establish some sort of airfare fund in response to a plea from providers of homeless services. Star-Advertiser.

A homeless mother is fighting for her right to breastfeed in public. The woman says the Oahu shelter she is staying at told her to cover up or get out. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu’s homeless are most visible in Kakaako, Waikiki, and Chinatown but they are everywhere throughout the state, in the parks and bushes and at the beach. Several of Hawaii’s political candidates have made addressing Hawaii’s homelessness and lack of housing a top issue this election. Hawaii Reporter.

The deadline for comments on the Kawainui-Hamakua master plan is Monday, and environmental and neighborhood groups are joining forces over concern that the proposed development will damage the natural resources and character of Kailua. Star-Advertiser.

The concrete barriers at popular Laniakea Beach were supposed to be a temporary fix to help keep the traffic flowing along Oahu's famed North Shore, but six months after workers installed them, it's unclear how long "temporary" will be. Star-Advertiser.


The state Board of Land and Natural Resources on Friday approved granting the $1.3 billion Thirty Meter Telescope project a sublease for land on Mauna Kea. In concept anyway. While the board voted in favor of the agreement, it won’t go into effect until several contested case hearing requests are resolved. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii Board of Land and Natural Resources voted to approve The University of Hawaii at Hilo's sublease of land on the summit of Mauna Kea for the $1.3 billion Thirty Meter Telescope, but the approval is on hold until the board hears several contested case requests are resolved. Pacific Business News.

The first group of 60 minimum-security inmates are expected to arrive at Hawaii island's Kulani Correctional Facility after it reopens this week, easing some of the crowding in the state's prison system. Star-Advertiser.

The dean of the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy said Friday that he will be stepping down at the end of the year. John Pezzuto, who helped launch the college at the University of Hawaii at Hilo in 2006, is moving on to the Arnold and Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at Long Island University in Brooklyn, New York, where he will serve as professor and dean. Tribune-Herald.

Some day, tanks at aquaculture farms around the state and nation could be teeming with millions of colorful fish to help stock the nation’s aquariums. At least that’s the dream for Syd Kraul and others who have attempted to strike the fine balance needed to rear species such as angelfish and yellow tang in captivity. But that day isn’t today. West Hawaii Today.

Women of the Womb do a chant to open communication during the launch of the Hawaii Star Visitor Sanctuary and UFO landing pad Friday afternoon in Kalapana near Unle Robert's Awa Club. The event was part of the weekend long Ho'ohana "A Sustainability Talk Story." Tribune-Herald.


The mayor of Maui ordered an end to direct communication between his staff and members of the Maui County Council. Mayor Alan Arakawa last week directed all county civil service employees, administration directors and staff to stop communicating verbally or in writing with council members or staff. The employees were instead directed to send communications through the office of the mayor and the managing director’s office. Associated Press.

For nearly two decades, Hana residents have known exactly where to go when they have had an after-hours medical emergency - the Hana Health hale where American Medical Response paramedics live. Maui News.

The state’s first flashing yellow arrow traffic signal has been installed on Maui and will be activated at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, June 30, 2014, county officials announced. Maui Now.


NASA officials are calling Saturday’s experimental test flight off the coast of Kauai a success, despite a malfunction of the saucer-shaped vehicle’s gigantic parachute. Garden Island.

A mysterious brownish-green plume off Kauai has prompted the state Clean Water Branch to issue a brown-water advisory for the coastal waters between Moloaa and Anahola bays. Star-Advertiser.

The federal government is considering whether the Native Hawaiian community should be treated as its own government and is seeking input from the Kauai community. Public meetings on Kauai are from 6 to 9 p.m. Monday at the Waimea Neighborhood Center and from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at Kapaa Elementary School. Garden Island.


The Native Hawaiian community on Molokai added its voice to the growing chorus of those who are rejecting a federal proposal that could lead to a formal U.S. relationship with a potential Native Hawaiian government. Star-Advertiser.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Department of Interior gets an earful on Native Hawaiian recognition, medical marijuana dispensaries eyed, Abercrombie plans 10 vetoes, Maui council overrides budget vetoes, Kauai to keep referendum petition numbers low, Kona church endangered, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2014 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hilo protest file photo © 2014 All Hawaii News
Dozens of Native Hawaiian speakers expressed anger and mistrust with the federal government Monday during the first of a series of meetings that could lead to the group being recognized similarly to an American Indian tribe. Interior Department officials hosted the public hearing, prompted by a push to include the ethnic group among the more than 560 tribes that hold such status, with federal considerations on issues from land management to social services. Associated Press.

The vast majority of people who testified before a federal panel Monday soundly rejected any attempt by the Obama administration to pursue federal recognition of a future Native Hawaiian governing body. In often passionate, sometimes heated testimony, dozens of speakers said they opposed any effort by the Department of the Interior to start a rule-making proc­ess that could set the framework for re-establishing a government-to-government relationship with Native Hawaiians. Star-Advertiser.

To help the U.S. Department of the Interior understand how some Native Hawaiians view federal recognition, Demont R. D. Conner offered this analogy: Your car is stolen. The person who stole the car later apologizes and offers you a bicycle. The only proper response to such an offer, said Connor, is to insist that the stolen property be returned to its rightful owner. Civil Beat.

Over 200 people packed the Hawaii State Capitol in the first of a series of meetings that could lead to federal recognition for Native Hawaiians. Officials from the federal government heard three and a half hours of testimony. Hawaii Public Radio.

A fiery meeting took place at the State Capitol Monday morning as the U.S. Dept. of Interior listened to public comment on establishing a Native Hawaiian government. Former Sen. Daniel Akaka sat in the front row as 143 people testified Monday for and against the idea. KHON2.

Hundreds of people showed up at the State Capitol on Monday for an intense hearing filled with emotional testimony about possible federal recognition for Native Hawaiians. Hawaii News Now.

Federal panel hears resounding “no” at Honolulu hearing. Hawaii Independent.

What would a Native Hawaiian government look like? No one knows. But as of Monday morning, federal officials are gathering public input on whether the United States should establish a government-to-government relationship with Hawaii’s indigenous community, starting with a hearing at the State Capitol. Huffington Post.

Years after coming close to establishing a pilot program, state officials are meeting with policy experts, patients, caregivers, lawmakers and others with the aim of crafting a bill that would allow medical marijuana distribution centers to operate legally in Hawaii. The Medical Marijuana Dispensary System Task Force, authorized by a joint resolution of the Legislature, convenes Tuesday to develop recommendations for establishing a statewide dispensary system for medical marijuana. Star-Advertiser.

The financial disclosure forms filed annually by members of the University of Hawaii's governing board and 14 other state boards and commissions will likely remain confidential now that Gov. Neil Abercrombie has signaled he might veto legislation aimed at making the forms public documents. Senate Bill 2682 was among 10 bills that Abercrombie told lawmakers Monday he's considering rejecting. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Monday identified 10 measures he is thinking about vetoing. They include a financial disclosure bill that the governor told Civil Beat last month he was skeptical about — because he thinks it would hurt women and discourage government service. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie said on Monday that he intends to veto 10 bills including Senate Bill 2682, which requires the financial disclosure statement of certain boards, commissioners and agencies to be made available to the public for inspection. The bill would have required 14 more boards and commissions to disclose their statements to the public, including the Board of Agriculture, the Hawaiian Homes Commission and the Board of Land and Natural Resources. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii County officials breathed a sigh of relief Monday afternoon, after learning Gov. Neil Abercrombie isn’t going to veto a bill giving them a larger share of the transient accommodations tax. But one Hawaii Island legislator is looking into why her bill is on the potential veto list, and Common Cause Hawaii is concerned that a bill requiring more transparency on boards and commissions is also on the list. West Hawaii Today.

Growing up in Kalihi-Palama and raised in a low-income household, Senate President Donna Mercado Kim said Monday her "humble beginnings" enabled her to understand the value of money, hence why she will focus on changing government spending and the budget if elected to Hawaii's First Congressional District. Hawaii News Now.

Voters will not get the chance to consider nonpartisan candidates for governor
in the August primary. The state Office of Elections went to Circuit Court to disqualify the nonpartisan candidates because no nonpartisan candidates ran for lieutenant governor. A state Supreme Court ruling in 1996 held that the state Constitution requires that the lieutenant governor be elected from the same political party as the governor. Star-Advertiser.

Sixty five percent of Hawaii’s public school principals are predicting a drastic drop in math and reading test scores the coming school year, in one case by as much as 50 percent. Hawaii Reporter.


Honolulu Ethics Commission Complains of Affronts to Its Independence. Investigation into possible fraud that may have cost taxpayers $250,000 a year was derailed, letter says. Civil Beat.

Candidates for the Honolulu City Council District 4 seat will participate in a campaign forum at the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board on Tuesday, June 24, from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Hahaione Elementary School’s cafeteria. Hawaii Reporter.

Levels of the chemical vanadium found in some of Oahu's drinking water wells were higher than in federal guidelines but do not pose a health concern, according to both the Hono­lulu Board of Water Supply and the state Department of Health. Star-Advertiser.

The $250 million Honolulu Seawater Air Conditioning project to cool Downtown Honolulu office buildings and condominiums towers with a revolutionary air-conditioning system, has completed its final environmental impact statement, a key development for the long-planned project. Pacific Business News.


Hawaii Island could be less than a year away from having some of the first hydrogen-powered buses in the state on its roadways. As part of a pilot project spearheaded by the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, three shuttle buses will be converted to hydrogen power. Tribune-Herald.

An iconic Alii Drive spot has made the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s most endangered list this year. Mokuaikaua Church, built in 1837, is in need of earthquake damage repair and has dysfunctional and faulty electrical wiring, termite damage, and dry-rot damage to beams in the steeple and wooden window frames, trust officials said in a news release Monday. West Hawaii Today.

Big Island dealerships are gearing up to address an auto recall caused by airbags that can malfunction in hot, humid climates. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Monday that BMW, Chrysler, Ford, Honda, Mazda, Nissan and Toyota will recall cars sold in humid areas such as Hawaii, Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Tribune-Herald.

John Dill, vice-chairman of the county Environmental Management Commission, died as the result of an apparent heart attack on May 29 at Hilo Medical Center, county sources said today. Big Island Now.


The Maui County Council on Monday unanimously voted to override Mayor Alan Arakawa’s line-item vetoes for the fiscal year 2015 budget, Council Chair Gladys Baisa announced. Maui Now.

The Maui County Council Monday morning overrode Mayor Alan Arakawa's eight line-item vetoes in the county budget in a unanimous 9-0 vote. Maui News.

Governor Neil Abercrombie on Friday released $19.5 million in Capitol Improvement Project funds for the acquisition of Līpoa Point at Honolua in West Maui. Maui Now.


The number of petition signatures required to place public measures on general election ballots will remain the same: Twenty percent of registered voters for referendums and initiatives, 5 percent for charter amendments. On Monday, the County of Kauai Charter Review Commission discussed, and voted down, two proposed amendments that some say would have brought balance to bringing forward public measures. Garden Island.

Koloa Rum Company is in need of a new home. Increased product demand, officials say, have prompted them to reassess their retail operations in Lihue and production facilities in Kalaheo, where the company’s popular spirits are distilled and Kukui Brand jams are manufactured. Garden Island.

As far as Billy Williams is concerned, there is no doubt business on Kauai is picking up steam, the economy is turning and people are spending money. Garden Island.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Soda tax dies, legislator apologizes for racist remarks, deal near on deadly 2006 Kauai dam breach, Hawaii County budget seeks to end furloughs, geothermal RFP released, police mum on disciplinary records, Hawaii is the best place to work, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2013 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii bartender (c) 2013 All Hawaii News
Hawaii workers have the best work environments in the United States, according to a new Gallup poll that also ranked the state No. 1 for having the highest overall well-being in the nation. Pacific Business News.

State senators have chosen not to advance a soda fee of 1 cent per ounce that would have brought in about $37 million a year to counter obesity. The Abercrombie administration had hoped that the soda fee, as with higher taxes on tobacco, would discourage consumption. Star-Advertiser.

State Rep. Faye Hanohano apologized Thursday and accepted full responsibility for racial and ethnic remarks she made earlier this week after being disappointed with artwork installed in her state Capitol office. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Rep. Faye Hanohano has apologized on the House floor for offending people by using racial slurs to express disapproval of art in her office. Associated Press.

State representative Faye Hanohano has made a name for herself advocating on behalf of Native Hawaiians, but it's what she admits to saying about other ethnicities that has raised some eyebrows. Hawaii News Now.

POLL: Was Rep. Hanohano's apology for racial slurs enough? KITV4.

Lawmakers are considering a bill that could move the balance of power in the state Legislature even more toward Oahu. Tribune-Herald.

A House committee has revived a proposal to strip the University of Hawaii of procurement oversight of its construction projects as a prominent engineer has expanded on allegations that a top UH executive wasted potentially tens of millions of taxpayer dollars through blatant mismanagement. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii state Senate Committee on Ways and Means has approved a measure aimed at increasing the number of candidates who receive public funding for Big Island elections. Associated Press.

A bill that would force the Hawaii Labor Relations Board to issue timely decisions on cases was passed by the House Finance Committee on Wednesday, much to the satisfaction of the teachers union. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii's visitor industry recorded gains in both visitor arrivals and spending in January, but the pace of growth slowed from last year's record-breaking performance, the Hawaii Tourism Authority reported Thursday. Star-Advertiser.

How widespread protests and a dissident legislative faction combined to topple the PLDC – for now. Hawaii Independent.

Carmille Lim, the newly appointed executive director of Common Cause Hawaii, has jumped into the deep end of democracy, starting at her new post just about when the Legislature convened. Star-Advertiser.

Linguists say they have determined that a unique sign language, possibly dating back to the 1800s or before, is being used in Hawaii. Associated Press.

In the Name of the Law: 5-part series on police misconduct. Civil Beat.

In-depth public service reporting on police agencies isn't possible in Hawaii, where misconduct records are exempt from public disclosure under a state law pushed through by Hawaii's own politically powerful police union. It's an exemption afforded only to the police; no other public employee has that protection. Civil Beat.

Eighteen years ago former Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano let bad cops off the hook when he allowed county police officers who got in trouble to remain anonymous. Civil Beat.

State roundup for March 1. Associated Press.


Honolulu Liquor Commission Administrator Greg I. Nishioka has resigned from practicing law and agreed to repay misappropriated money to clients, according to the state Disciplinary Board of the Hawaii Supreme Court. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu Liquor Commission administrator is on the hot seat after misappropriating client money in his prior career as a lawyer, voluntarily surrendering his law license, and not disclosing any of it to the liquor board. KHON2.

Tourism officials discuss future management of Hawaii Convention Center. Pacific Business News.

The operator of the city's Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill has spent $1.5 million to design and construct a gas collection and control system to rectify alleged violations of the U.S. Clean Air Act that were resolved by a federal consent decree. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu City Council members are considering a bill to encourage compliance by dead-beat homeowners who fail to clean up their yards. Hawaii Public Radio.

An island-style drive-in restaurant known for its unusual seafood burgers and 24-hour service has closed after 47 years of business. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu Girl Scouts from public and private schools across the island are part of the first high-schoolers in the state to send a Microlab — an automated, self-contained science lab in a 4 1⁄2-by-2-by-2-inch module — to the International Space Station. Star-Advertiser.

This month marks the 70th anniversary of the opening of Hono­uli­uli, the largest of the 13 internment sites in Hawaii during the war. The Nishi­muras are one of the families featured in the Japa­nese Cultural Center of Hawaii documentary "The Untold Story: Internment of Japanese Americans in Hawaii." Star-Advertiser.


Anticipating a slight rise in property values this year, Mayor Billy Kenoi on Thursday proposed a $370.8 million operating budget that holds the line on property taxes and eliminates the monthly unpaid furlough day for county employees. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii Electric Light Co. announced Thursday it is ready to receive offers for expanding geothermal power on the Big Island by up to 50 megawatts. Tribune-Herald.


Maui County residents could have to pay double the current price for a new water meter come July 1 under a proposal by the Department of Water Supply. Maui News.

The Kahana Sunset's draft environmental assessment for a replacement seawall and drainage improvements underwent a review by the Maui Planning Commission on Tuesday. Maui News.

Four projects on Maui were named as recipients for funds in the first round of county grants for small town planning. Maui Now.

The Allied Health Center at the University of Hawaii Maui College was one of four University of Hawaii programs or facilities renamed in honor of the late Sen. Daniel K. Inouye. Maui News.


The state attorney general and James Pflueger’s attorneys are finalizing a plea deal that would allow the 86-year-old automobile dealer to have his company take the brunt of charges filed against him over the breach of his Ka Loko Dam. Hawaii Reporter.

The Kaua‘i Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Lihu‘e Business Association, hosted the first of three panel discussions with candidates for the Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative Board of Directors Wednesday night at Kaua‘i Community College. Garden Island.

The head of the Planning Department took a lashing from the Kaua‘i County Council Wednesday for using funds earmarked for enforcement of transient vacation rentals in a different manner than approved by the council in 2012 and refusing to reveal additional details publicly. Garden Island.

The Garden Island ran its press for the last time Wednesday night, making Kauai the only county in Hawaii without a daily newspaper printed on island. Civil Beat.