Showing posts with label Rusty Scalpel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rusty Scalpel. Show all posts

Friday, June 25, 2021

Hawaii to lift restrictions for vaccinated U.S. travelers, local sentiment against tourists worsens, Ige signs electric vehicle legislation, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Locals Mostly T-shirt in Hilo June 17, 2021 ©2021 All Hawaii News
Hawaii resident sentiment toward tourism worsens, but majority believe issues are worth it. Only 53% of respondents said tourism has brought more benefits than problems in the 2021 HTA Resident Sentiment Survey conducted by Omnitrak and released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority today. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Will Lift Restrictions For Vaccinated US Travelers On July 8. Hawaii will lift quarantine and pre-travel testing requirements for domestic travelers from the mainland who can show proof of receiving a COVID-19 vaccination early next month, Gov. David Ige said Thursday. Civil Beat. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Garden Island. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Electric Vehicles Supported In Latest Hawaiʻi Bill Signings. Governor David Ige on Thursday signed three house bills into law that shared a common electrification of transportation theme. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now.

Ige signs women’s caucus bills and other measures.
Gov. David Ige on Thursday signed a slew of bills into law, including legislation from the Hawaii Women’s Legislative Caucus. Tribune-Herald.

Gutted with a Rusty Scalpel. A bill Gov. David Ige is threatening to veto and one he signed are the “winners” of this year’s Rusty Scalpel award from two public-interest groups. West Hawaii Today.

Remains from the USS Oklahoma that could not be ID’d will be reinterred at Punchbowl. At least 51 unidentified crew members of the USS Oklahoma were returned to Hickam Field on Thursday — and while no families were there to rejoice over the identification of a relative, as has been the case for 343 other crew mainly in recent years — the U.S. military gave the Dec. 7, 1941, heroes full honors. Star-Advertiser.

Hawai´i Vacation Rental Demand Surges in May. The total monthly supply of statewide vacation rentals was 572,900 unit nights (+71.8%) and monthly demand was 413,500 unit nights (+988.5%) over the course of the month. That resulted in an average monthly unit occupancy of 72.2 percent (+60.8 percentage points) for May, which was higher than the occupancy of Hawai´i’s hotels (61.5%). Big Island Now.

Matson Inc. ups dividend 30%, approves share buyback.
Matson Inc., the state’s largest ocean transportation firm, announced Thursday a 30.4% increase in its dividend and said its board has approved a share repurchase program totaling 3 million shares. Star-Advertiser.

Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems to receive federal funding. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz announced Thursday that Papa Ola Lokahi, a nonprofit organization that advocates for and coordinates health care for Native Hawaiians, and the five Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems will receive a total of $18.2 million in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

More Than Half Of Hawaii’s Inmates Have Been Vaccinated Against COVID-19. But a breakdown of individual facilities shows mixed results, with 89% inoculated at the Kulani Correctional Facility and 23% at the jail in Hilo. Civil Beat.

Hawaii cluster report highlights COVID-19 transmission in places of worship. The Hawaii Department of Health’s COVID-19 cluster report this week focuses on outbreaks in places of worship due to two clusters under investigation on Oahu and Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii reports 55 new COVID cases; no additional fatalities.
Of the new cases, 29 were on Oahu, 10 were on Maui, seven were on Kauai, six were on Hawaii Island, and one was reported on Molokai. There were also two residents diagnosed out-of-state. Hawaii News Now.


Another Questionable Million-Dollar Honolulu Rail Contract? Documents suggest a contract for federal lobbying services was already a done deal before it was put out to bid. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Police Department push for more recruits.
The Honolulu Police Department is looking for qualified candidates to shore up staffing, increase officer safety and help fill 279 vacancies that cost the city more than $2.5 million in overtime expenses in a single quarter. Star-Advertiser.

HDOT Changes Plans For Farrington Highway Bypass After Community Protests. There is new hope for residents hoping to reroute Farrington Highway makai of Makaha Beach Park. Civil Beat.

Oahu driver licensing centers, satellite city halls to extend hours to meet demand. Driver licensing centers around Oahu will extend their hours starting July 1 to meet a growing demand for driver’s licenses, learner’s permits and state identification cards. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Fireworks, Other July 4th Celebrations Back on Big Island. The County of Hawaiʻi Department of Parks and Recreation on Thursday announced this year’s Fourth of July celebrations in Hilo and Kailua-Kona. Big Island Now.

EA For Kona Manta Viewing Site Moorings Open For Comment. The State of Hawaiʻi is planning to reconfigure and install additional day-use moorings at two popular manta viewing sites along the Kona coast. Big Island Video News.


Stage 1 Water Shortage Declaration for Upcountry Maui Takes Effect July 2.  Beginning July 2, the department will prohibit Upcountry water consumers from using water for irrigation, watering lawns, washing vehicles or other nonessential activities. Maui Now.

Maui County’s Vacation Rental Occupancy Increases to 75% for May.
In May 2021, Maui County had the largest vacation rental supply of all four Hawaiian counties with 234,400 available unit nights, with an occupancy rate of 75%, according to the latest Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority Report on vacation rental performance. Maui Now.

Kahului Park Playground closes because of ‘deterioration of play features’.
Kahului Park Playground on Maui is closed effective immediately because of the “deterioration of the play features,” the County of Maui’s Department of Parks and Recreation announced today. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

Maui restaurant with red DOH placard opts to close shop for good. Pizza in Paradise in Kahului was closed back in May for unsanitary conditions. During a routine inspection, health inspectors found live maggots in a pot of old food, roaches in the kitchen, and piles of customer trash. Hawaii News Now.


KPD graduates six in 94th recruit class. The Kaua‘i Police Department held a small outdoor ceremony on Thursday for its 94th Police Recruit Class graduates. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i Museum new exhibit hall dedicated to Maryanne Kusaka. In a surprise move by the Kaua‘i Museum Board of Trustees, the museum’s new exhibit hall was dedicated Waimakua in honor of Kusaka, who is the current head of the Trustees. 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