Showing posts with label U.S. Supreme Court. Show all posts
Showing posts with label U.S. Supreme Court. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Legal battle could limit rural Hawaii abortion access, controversial water resource official Kaleo Manuel leaves post, Maui realtors newsletter offends Lahaina fire survivors, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands


A Legal Fight Over Abortion Pill Access Could Have Major Impacts For Rural Hawaii. A Supreme Court decision restricting use of the pill could make it difficult if not impossible for many Hawaii women to get an abortion. Civil Beat.

Case of newborn girl left in trash bin shines light on legal options. Could knowledge of Hawaii’s “Baby Safe Haven” law have prevented a mother from giving birth and dumping her live newborn infant into a trash bin Saturday night in Kahala? Star-Advertiser.

Reinstated water official Manuel leaving post.  The departure of Kaleo Manuel as deputy director of the Commission on Water Resource Management will be effective Jan. 5, according to state Sen. Lorraine Inouye. Star-Advertiser.

University of Hawaiʻi requests additional $56M from state Legislature. The costs would fund over 100 positions at UH campuses statewide that would boost mental health counselors, medical programs and campus security. UH has a total operating cost of $1.3 billion. Hawaii Public Radio.


Public asked to weigh in on impacts of Marine Corps Base Hawaii facility upgrades.
The military is looking to upgrade its facilities at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Windward Oahu and the public is invited to weigh in on those proposed plans. Hawaii News Now.

Building A Bike Path From Nanakuli To Manoa Could Take 20 Years. The City and County of Honolulu is soliciting contractors for help crafting an initial plan. Civil Beat.

Naloxone required at bars and restaurants starting 2024. The majority of businesses with liquor licenses on Oahu will be required to have naloxone, a drug that counters opioid overdoses on site starting the new year. Honolulu became the first major American city to pass a law of its kind. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Hawaiʻi County issues the most new building permits for homes in the state. According to data from the University of Hawaiʻi Economic Research Organization, the county granted 930 permits for new residences between January and April of 2023. In the same time period, Honolulu County issued 330 permits, Maui County issued 235, and Kauaʻi County issued 185 permits. Hawaii Public Radio.


State senators from Maui earn leadership roles and committee assignments for 2024.
The Hawaiʻi State Senate announced its finalized leadership and committee assignments ahead of the 32nd Legislature to continue on Jan. 17, 2024.  Maui Now.

Hui O Ka Wai Ola gets $179K FEMA funds to increase water quality testing in Lahaina. HOKWO was one of the first groups to test water quality in the burn zone and continues to monitor conditions at seven sites within Lahaina town. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now.

Businesses In Lahaina May Face Significant Barriers To Reopening. A California town recovering from a devastating wildfire offers a glimpse of the challenges ahead for Lahaina's business community -- along with a few possible solutions. Civil Beat.

Maui realtors apologize after sending newsletter about Lahaina properties
. After sending out a newsletter discussing Lahaina properties some considered offensive, Wailea-based real estate brokerage Romvari Realty apologized for the message. KITV4.


Fireworks go on sale for New Year’s Eve.
Kaua‘i Fire Department officials said that fireworks and firecrackers may only be ignited on private property between 9 p.m. on Dec. 31, and 1 a.m. on Jan. 1, and only licensed pyro-technicians with proper permits are authorized to ignite aerial fireworks. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Some restaurants add 10% 'supply chain' surcharge, Hawaii law school treats Supreme Court justices to luxurious trips, Waikiki church told to quit feeding homeless, nepotism law goes into effect, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Some Hawaii restaurants now adding 10% Supply Chain fee. Some restaurants are now adding a 10% charge to your check, calling it a Supply Chain Adjustment. In some cases, customers don’t know about it until they get the check. KHON2.

UH law school not alone in offering luxury trips to Supreme Court justices. Supreme Court justices and donors mingle at campus visits. For decades, the University of Hawaii law school has marketed its Jurist-In-Residence program to the Supreme Court as an all-expenses-paid getaway, with the upside of considerable “down time” in paradise. Associated Press.

Anti-nepotism law takes effect in Hawaii.  A new law took effect Tuesday prohibiting nepotism across state government — particularly for the 60,000 employees in the executive branch — but notably exempts the state Legislature and Judiciary. Star-Advertiser. KHON2.

Hawaii ahead of the pack in installation of EV fast chargers. Hawaii is the first out of the gate to award a contract for federally funded fast chargers to be deployed across the state. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii ranks 2nd in the nation for fatal crashes involving distracted driving. A new analysis shows Hawaii has the second highest rate of fatal crashes involving distracted drivers in the nation, just behind New Mexico. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Department of Public Safety names new corrections deputy director.  Sanna Munoz, who had served as the domestic violence unit probation supervisor for the state Judiciary Adult Client Services Branch in the Third Circuit, will serve in her new role starting Aug. 1. Star-Advertiser.

As trash continues to pile, Oʻahu and Kauaʻi officials discuss landfill siting options.   Landfill siting on Oʻahu and Kauaʻi hit roadblocks with Act 73, which created buffer zones and limitations on potential new sites. Hawaii Public Radio.

Struggles continue despite more positive outlook on COVID-19 pandemic. Results from the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization’s third public-health report, released today, reflect a more positive outlook on the pandemic. Star-Advertiser.


Facing ‘heavy-handed’ city pressure, Waikiki church will stop its daily free meal service.  A Waikiki church that’s been serving free meals to the needy for more than five decades says it will end its daily lunch line at the end of the week. Hawaii News Now.

Navy Awards Red Hill Contract To Company Just Raided By Feds .
The Navy said on Tuesday that it has officially parted ways with a contractor the military blames for spilling firefighting chemicals at Red Hill last year.  Civil Beat.

City suspends another reviewer who cleared ‘monster home’ plans. The City and County of Honolulu’s Department of Planning and Permitting has suspended the registration of another third-party reviewer who approved plans for “monster house” projects that are not in compliance with city ordinances. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Tells Tow Company To Stop Charging $900 Fees. The City and County of Honolulu has told its towing contractor to temporarily stop charging an additional tow fee while it investigates all the instances it has been applied this year. Civil Beat.

Care facility nurses announce 7-day strike amid ‘shameful’ wage dispute. Nurses and nurses aides at Oahu Care Facility in McCully-Moiliili have announced a seven-day strike amid an ongoing wage dispute. Hawaii News Now.

DHHL holds groundbreaking ceremony for East Kapolei housing developments.  The first phase of development will consist of 127 single-family residential lots across 24 acres. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

Kimo Alameda to announce 2024 run for Hawai‘i County mayor.  Kimo Alameda, who has been lead of the Hawai‘i Island Fentanyl Task Force and vice president of business development for Hawai‘i Island Community Health Center since 2022, is stepping away from those roles to pursue a bid to become the next mayor of Hawai‘i County in 2024. Big Island Now.

New pilot program aims to encourage pono behavior.  A partnership between the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Hawaii County and the Island of Hawaii Visitors Bureau announced two conjoined programs that will employ local stewards to educate visitors to Richardson and Lehia beach parks in Keaukaha. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now.  Hawaii News Now.  KITV4.

Hawai’i County unveils first hybrid hydrogen- and electric-powered bus.  When Hawai’i County officials unveiled the Big Island’s first hybrid hydrogen and electric bus, people were pleased by the soft sound, clean air and lack of nauseous gases. Big Island Now.

Hilo resiliency hub clears final EA.  The Keaukaha Pana‘ewa Farmers Association plans to build a “resiliency and agricultural innovation hub” on Railroad Avenue on the same state-owned 10-acre parcel where the Pana‘ewa Farmers Market is held every Saturday. Tribune-Herald.


What to do with a gas tax with so many EVs on the road? Maui eyes a ‘road usage charge’.  Maui County Councilmembers discussed a new state charge on Tuesday that could also be implemented on the county level. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

DesJardins sworn in as first deputy corporation counsel.  Mimi DesJardins, a former judge and longtime attorney who ran a solo law practice for 20 years, was sworn in June 30 as first deputy corporation counsel for Maui County. Maui News.

New youth shelter in Wailuku will offer mentorship and temporary housing. Hale Pono teen shelter is located in Wailuku and will offer 13 beds for youth ages 12 to 17.  Hawaii Public Radio. Maui Now.

Maui Brewing Company in Lahaina closed due to roach, rodent infestation.  The restaurant, located at 4405 Honoapiilani Highway, received a red placard on Monday by the DOH Maui Food Safety Branch.  Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.  KITV4.


Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative to hold annual membership meeting on July 20.  Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative members are invited to attend the cooperative’s annual meeting on July 20 at the Kauaʻi Philippine Cultural Center in Puhi. Kauai Now.

Almarza named Kaua‘i United Way executive director.  Lori L. Almarza is the Kaua‘i United Way executive director, announced the board of directors of Kaua‘i United Way on July 5. Garden Island.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

U.S. Supreme Court to hear Hawaii Clean Water Act cesspool case, Trump seeks to pull California rail funding over wall lawsuit -- could that happen to Honolulu? Plus, legislators want more Capitol security, county preps for foam food container ban, more top news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii's green Big Island ©2019 All Hawaii News
The U.S. Supreme Court will consider limiting the reach of the Clean Water Act, agreeing to hear a case from Hawaii centering on treated wastewater that ends up in the Pacific Ocean. Bloomberg.

Supreme Court to decide if Clean Water Act limits Hawaii’s underground waste water dumping. The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to hear an important case on the Clean Water Act and decide whether environmentalists can sue to block Hawaii’s disposal of waste water that flows underground into the Pacific Ocean. Los Angeles Times.

The Supreme Court is set to take up a critical debate over the scope of federal water protections. The justices today agreed to hear what amounts to the biggest environmental case of this year: a dispute over which types of pollution discharges trigger the Clean Water Act. E&E News.

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case centered on how Maui County treats its wastewater. KHON2.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to consider limiting the scope of a landmark law aimed at curbing water pollution in a dispute pitting an environmental group against local authorities in Hawaii over a wastewater treatment plant. CNBC.

U.S. Supreme Court County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund docket.


Could this happen to Hawaii? Trump wants California to pay back billions for bullet train. The Trump administration said Tuesday that it plans to cancel $929 million awarded to California’s high-speed rail project and wants the state to return an additional $2.5 billion that it has already spent. Associated Press.

Border wall declaration could divert $300M appropriated for Hawaii programs. State Attorney General Clare Connors says Hawaii “has a lot to lose” if the president diverts federal funding for his border wall as part of a national emergency declaration. Hawaii News Now.


Lawmakers want State Capitol to be safer after deadly shooting. Lawmakers are in shock that a shooting involving a Sheriff's deputy took place at the state capitol. KHON2.

The fatal shooting by a sheriff’s deputy Monday night of a 28-year-old man at the state Capitol was the second in the area in the last four months. Star-Advertiser.

Man Dies After 'Extreme Struggle' With Deputy Sheriff Outside Hawaii Capitol. The man was shot in the torso after he attacked the officer, said state Public Safety Director Nolan Espinda. Civil Beat.

A man who was killed in an officer-involved shooting at the state Capitol on Monday night was “physically combative" with a sheriff’s deputy despite numerous warnings, state Public Safety officials said. Hawaii News Now.

The state Department of Public Safety says the deputy sheriff was conducting routine patrols at the Capitol in downtown Honolulu Monday night when he encountered a man with a bottle of alcohol. Hawaii Public Radio.

Public Safety Director addresses shooting at State Capitol. The director of the Department of Public Safety, Nolan Espinda, held a news conference to address the shooting at the State Capitol. KHON2.

Public Safety Department seeking body cams and tasers for sheriffs after a deadly shooting at the State Capitol. KITV.


The state agency that oversees Hawaii’s jails and prisons would be required to submit a report to the governor within 48 hours of the death of an inmate or employee of a correctional facility under bills being considered by the Legislature this year. Star-Advertiser.

Sex-trafficking bills opposed by new prostitution lobby. A newly formed prostitution lobby in Hawaii is pushing back against bills in the Legislature that seek to combat sex trafficking in Hawaii, arguing that the executive director of the state agency that is seeking the measures wields a “radical feminist agenda” that doesn’t take into account the views of local sex workers. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii aquaculture industry struggles to compete with foreign fish imports. Hawaii shrimp and fish farmers said the most significant barrier to new enterprises are choking state and federal regulations--a bureaucratic structure that largely doesn’t apply to foreign imports. Hawaii News Now.

Alala poised to breed this year in the wild. Since late 2017, 21 alala, or Hawaiian crows, have been released into the wild under monitoring by the Alala Project, a joint effort between the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and San Diego Zoo Global to revitalize the critically endangered species. Tribune-Herald.


Police Union Goes To Court To Overturn Labor Board Ruling On Officer Transfers. The State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers challenged the right of Police Chief Susan Ballard to reassign officers. Civil Beat.


Traffic nightmare on Pali Highway could last the rest of the week. Traffic was snarled Tuesday on Oahu’s Windward side in the wake of Monday’s multiple landslides that closed Pali Highway in both directions. Star-Advertiser.

Old Pali Road remains unstable, shifted 18-inches since landslide. Hawaii News Now.

Landslide Closes Pali Highway And Seriously Injures Woman. The road was completely closed Tuesday and portions will remain shut down all week while the area is surveyed. Associated Press.

The Honolulu-bound lanes of the Pali Highway are expected to remain closed through next Monday following landslides yesterday that shut down the road. Hawaii Public Radio.


Judge turns down request to disqualify prosecutors. A state judge refused Tuesday to disqualify the Honolulu Department of the Prosecuting Attorney from presenting a criminal case due to a pending petition to suspend prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu’s cost of living is challenging for a lot of residents, but it’s especially tough for young adults who are just getting started and trying to build careers. Adults aged 25 to 34 are facing higher college tuition, higher rents and bigger housing prices than previous generations. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Hawaii Island’s ban on polystyrene — also known as Styrofoam — food containers goes into effect in less than five months, and an educational program for businesses and the public is about to begin. West Hawaii Today.

Council Advances Hilo Water Bottling Zoning Request. A controversial proposal to draw water from an artesian water source within the Mauna Kea aquifer sector and sell it as bottled water went before a Hawaii County Council committee on Tuesday. Big Island Video News.

Bank of Hawaii plans to build a new branch in Hilo. The proposed location is at 1339 Kinoole St., at the northeast corner of the intersection with Lanikaula Street. Tribune-Herald.

A bill funding a study for a new boat ramp in Puna cleared the Senate Ways and Means Committee on Tuesday. Tribune-Herald.


Crews Respond to Entangled Humpback off Maui. A team of trained responders is attempting to locate and assist a humpback whale that was first reported entangled off the coast of Maui over the weekend. Maui Now.

Plans move ahead for new hotel on old Maui Palms site. Construction could start by the end of the year if permits granted. Maui News.

The public is invited to offer ideas and comments for the Baldwin Beach Park Master Plan during an open house held by the Department of Parks and Recreation on Wednesday, March 6, at the Kaunoa Senior Center. KHON2.

Scent of Extinct Maui Mountain Hibiscus Revived by Science. The Hau Kuahiwi was found in the ancient lava fields of Auwahi in Kahikinui on the southern slopes of Haleakala in 1910 by horticulturist Gerrit Wilder. Maui Now.


Pacific Seabird Group to host annual meeting on Kauai. Kauai is hosting a meeting of the minds this month, a gathering of researchers and experts who will be swapping stories, discussing discoveries and talking technique at the 46th annual meeting of the Pacific Seabird Group. Garden Island.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Campaign disclosure law stands, Gabbard back in spotlight, state owes millions to Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, Maui mulls water availability rules, Kauai takes up property taxes, barking dogs, more government and political news from all the Hawaiian Islands

The U.S. Supreme Court won't hear a challenge to Hawaii campaign finance laws that require a private company buying campaign ads to register as a political action committee. The justices on Monday rejected an appeal from a Hawaii electrical construction company that spent about $9,000 on political newspaper advertisements during the 2010 election cycle. Associated Press.

Tulsi Gabbard: Rising Democratic star makes mark on party by openly defying it. New York Times.

The state owes nearly $20 million to the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands for violating the state Constitution by failing to adequately fund the department for more than two decades, a state judge has ruled. Star-Advertiser.

After an eight day trial which concluded in July, First Circuit Court Judge Jeannette Castagnetti has ruled that the State violated its constitutional duty by its continuing failure to provide adequate funding to the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands. Hawaii News Now.

A judge says the state has to appropriate millions of dollars more to fund the Department of Hawaiian Homelands adequately for the first time since at least 1992. Associated Press.

Is the Native Hawaiian election known as Na‘i Aupuni in trouble? U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy issued an order Friday blocking the counting and certification of election votes pending a further order by Kennedy or the court. Star-Advertiser.

Supporters of a Native Hawaiian election of delegates to a February convention are urging voters to submit their ballots by the Monday deadline, despite an order Friday by U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy temporarily halting the counting of ballots or certification of winners. West Hawaii Today.

Having lost two previous rounds in court, the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii prevailed on Friday when a U.S. Supreme Court justice put a stay on the counting of votes in a Native Hawaiian election. Civil Beat.

The final evidentiary hearing in the state regulatory review of the proposed $4.3 billion acquisition of Hawaii’s electric utilities will begin Monday. Tribune-Herald.

The state Public Utilities Commission upheld last week its decision to not compel testimony from company CEOs in the upcoming evidentiary hearing on the proposed merger of NextEra Energy Inc. and the Hawaiian Electric companies. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii Consumer Advocate says that Jim Robo, the CEO of NextEra Energy Inc., and Connie Lau, CEO of Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc., should be part of the upcoming regulatory hearing process regarding the NextEra's proposed $4.3 billion acquisition of Hawaiian Electric Co. Pacific Business News.

Hawaiian Airlines and other air carriers should expect some pointed questions next year from lawmakers about some long-standing state tax exemptions that are costing the state millions of dollars a year in lost tax collections. Star-Advertiser.

A Hawaiian Airlines executive has hinted a brand-makeover could be coming for the Hawaii-based carrier in the next couple of years, including new uniforms. Pacific Business News.


The Hawai'i Convention Center is on track to achieve its highest gross revenue and its lowest net loss since opening in 1998. But tourism officials acknowledge it still has further to go. Star-Advertiser.

One month after Ewa homeowners filed a lawsuit against Haseko Development for deciding to build a lagoon instead of a marina, Haseko representatives met with officials from the city Department of Planning and Permitting to discuss the project’s environmental impact analysis and zone change application. Civil Beat.

State officials say they have found private bidders to help clear out more homeless residents who have been camped along the Kakaako shoreline. Associated Press.

Yet more confirmation that homelessness is at a crisis level in Honolulu: Alternet has listed us along with five other U.S. cities “struggling with a massive homelessness problem and what they are — or are not — doing about it.” Civil Beat.


Department of Health personnel sprayed areas of South Kona, Hilo, Puna and Kau on Sunday in an ongoing effort to combat the spread of mosquito-borne dengue fever on the Big Island. Star-Advertiser.

Homegrown tourism supplements agricultural income as County Council takes up agritourism measure. Tour guide turned vanilla producer Jim Reddekopp just wanted a place to raise his kids. He ended up creating the first commercial vanilla orchid plantation in the United States. West Hawaii Today.


A bill that would repeal the county’s water availability policy, also known as the “show me the water” policy, will be considered by the Water Resources Committee on Wednesday, Dec. 2 at 9 a.m. in the Council Chamber.Maui Now.

Just four days before the star-studded and red-carpet-themed Mayor's Kokua Ball in March 2013, Hollywood movie mogul Ryan Kavanaugh fired off emails to Maui County officials, vilifying then-Maui film commissioner Harry Donenfeld and giving them what appears to be an ultimatum - Donenfeld would need to go or the Relativity Media chief would. Maui News.

The state Department of Health will receive written comments and hold public hearings on proposed changes regarding cesspools. Maui News.

A Kahului woman settled a lawsuit against the state Department of Education over inadequate teaching methods and services for her deaf daughter, but added that she will sue again if the proper services are not provided as agreed. Maui News.


Barking dogs, bed-and-breakfasts and the homestead tax cap are all going to be on tap at this Wednesday’s Kauai Council meeting. Garden Island.

The Department of Land and Natural Resources is reminding Kaua‘i residents to be mindful of Albatross breeding season between now and July. Hawaii Public Radio.

Maria Costantini is a field assistant for Kauai Forest Bird Recovery Project, a state Division of Forestry and Wildlife program that promotes the conservation of Kauai’s native forest birds, all of which are unique to Hawaii, several of which are endemic to Kauai and a few of which are endangered. Garden Island.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Lingle walks political tightrope, Hawaii forges energy partnership with Japan, China, Honolulu bus cuts blasted, political second-guessing continues, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Lingle and Obama in happier times, White House courtesy photo
Former Gov. Linda Lingle, who faces political risks in criticizing Hawaii-born President Barack Obama, has turned to a riper target in her Republican campaign for U.S. Senate: Congress. Star-Advertiser.

Congressional candidate Tulsi Gabbard said she will decide by next week whether to resign her Honolulu City Council seat in time for a successor to be elected at the general election, a move that would likely save the city as much as $150,000. Star-Advertiser.

We were baffled by the turn of events. We nailed Tulsi Gabbard's big win over Mufi Hannemann right on the nose, but our otherwise sterling election survey record was tarnished with Mazie Hirono's decisive victory over Ed Case in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate. Civil Beat.

The collaboration between Hawaii and Japan in the push for renewable energy is intensifying as Japan finds itself in an increasingly vulnerable position following the devastating 2011 tsunami and nuclear disaster. Civil Beat.

Hawai’i is partnering with China to launch a clean energy investment and deployment program in the state. Maui Now.

Project financing is one of the biggest challenges most renewable energy startups face and that was the topic of one of the more interesting and well-attended panels at the 4th Annual Asia-Pacific Clean Energy Summit and Expo at the Hawaii Convention Center on Tuesday. Pacific Business News.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission says Hawaiian Electric Co. will pay $50,000 to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit by an employee who is blind in one eye. Associated Press.

State roundup for Aug. 15. Associated Press.


City Council Chairman Ernie Martin is urging Mayor Peter Carlisle to restore bus service that was cut earlier this year, saying it now appears inevitable the next administration will cancel the unpopular bus cuts and reinstate the old routes and schedules. Star-Advertiser.

The city continues to buy property in the line of the rail transit project, some for much higher than the homes are valued by the city. Hawaii News Now.

Instead of just focusing on beating him outright in the November 6 General Election, state Rep. Kymberly Pine is demanding the resignation of her General Election opponent in Council District 1, incumbent Honolulu City Council Member Tom Berg. Hawaii Reporter.

City Councilman Tom Berg has been stripped of two committee assignments by Council Chairman Ernie Martin because of his outburst during a Transportation Committee meeting July 26. Star-Advertiser.

One month after a Haleiwa community group filed suit against the City and County of Honolulu for allegedly mishandling the proposed sale of Haleiwa Regional Park, two Native Hawaiians have filed their own case against the city. Civil Beat.

The state has approved the sale of Hawaii Medical Center-West to the Queen's Medical Center for $73.2 million, clearing a major regulatory hurdle for the reopening of West Oahu's only acute-care hospital. Star-Advertiser.

Duane "Dog" Chapman has his bags packed for London, but a murder conviction from the late 1970s is keeping him out of the United Kingdom. KITV4.


There were still more questions than answers Tuesday after state Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago held an almost two-hour debriefing of county clerks. West Hawaii Today.

The state Elections Office and the Hawaii County Council chairman are still trying to determine why some Hawaii island polling places opened late for Saturday's primary and how to prevent a recurrence in the general election. Star-Advertiser.

State office elections officials held a de-brief meeting in Hilo Tuesday to discuss the issues that resulted in primary election delays on the Big Island. KHON2.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is awarding Hawaii nearly $2.5 million in grants to buy thousands of acres on the Big Island to protect endangered species. Hawaii News Now.

The Hawai`i biofuel company Aina Koa Pono is back at the Public Utilities Commission with a new proposal to supply plant based electricity. The new proposal is supposed to save customers millions of dollars over the last deal, but will it be enough to convince the PUC it’s the right choice for Hawai`i’s residents? Hawaii Public Radio.

Three endangered aeo got their first taste of freedom Sunday after a rehabilitation lasting more than two months. West Hawaii Today.


U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy today called the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference in Kaanapali a "prudent and proper exercise of the judicial function." Maui News.

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy says the Senate confirmation for new federal judges is too political and is keeping out highly qualified candidates who don’t want to go through the difficult process. Associated Press.

Maui County is a step closer to implementing a new industrial zoning class that would allow for more than 50 uses, including chemical manufacturing, petroleum refining, quarries and landfills. Maui News.


Kaua‘i was the only island in the state that experienced a rise in its residential electric rate in August even though the price of oil was down early this summer. Garden Island.

The Democratic Party completed its unity rally sweep through the state by hosting several hundred people, including Kaua‘i candidates for various offices and their respective supporters, Tuesday at the Kaua‘i Veterans Center in Lihu‘e. Garden Island.

In a time when most financial institutions charge more than $30 for bounced checks, Kauai County is still charging $7.50 for such a fee. But that may change pretty soon — and very steeply, as a new proposed fee would increase the penalty 400 percent. Garden Island.

The Kaua‘i Planning Commission acted Tuesday to help ensure that an affordable housing project tied to a Princeville shopping center expansion would be developed after permits are issued. Garden Island.


In an effort to prevent further overfishing, vandalism and overall neglect of natural resources of Mo`omomi Beach, a gate will be installed to restrict vehicle access to the area. Molokai Dispatch.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hawaiians in da House (and the Senate)

HONOLULU -- More than 300 people chanted, danced, blew conch shells and beat drums in the Capitol Rotunda starting at 4 a.m. and continuing well into the afternoon today, protesting the ceded lands case being heard in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Details of the oral arguments by attorneys for the Gov. Linda Lingle administration and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, as well as a transcript, are well-documented here by Honolulu land-use attorney Robert Thomas.

The Hawaii Legislature has also leapt into the fray.

The House and the Senate have passed SCR 40, urging the administration to drop the appeal.

A more substantive bill, SB 1677, requires a two-thirds vote by the Legislature before ceded lands can be sold. It unanimously passed the Senate on Feb. 20 and will be taken up by the

Friday, February 20, 2009

This land is my land, this land is my land

HONOLULU -- Hawaiian activists plan to set fire to Gov. Linda Lingle’s U.S. Supreme Court petition and light their torches with it as they rally at the state Capitol against the administration’s plans to sell some of the land it holds in trust.

Like a government version of Kramer vs. Kramer, two state agencies will duke it out in a courtroom Wednesday when the Lingle administration and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs each tells the highest court in the land that the other has no right to property ceded to the state following the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy.

“This state appeal has the potential to undermine all Native Hawaiian programs and assets as well as undermine the legal basis for Native Hawaiian federal recognition,” OHA Chairwoman Haunani Apoliona said during a news conference today on the grounds of Iolani Palace, an important symbol to the Native Hawaiian community.

While the lawyers fight, Native Hawaiians, alongside those “Hawaiian at heart,” will hold a vigil at the Capitol from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday. There will be prayers, pahu drums, chanting every hour, on the hour as part of a series of events planned that day in Honolulu, Seattle, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, New Haven, Conn., and Washington, D.C.

Activists are also calling for Hawaiians and sympathizers to take a day off work Wednesday to join the rally and send a message about the strength of the movement.

“A far-reaching decision by the U.S. Supreme Court could affect OHA’s ability to carry out its mission of bettering the conditions of Native Hawaiians,” Apoliona said.

Underscoring how divided the state is over the issue, the Democrat-controlled Hawaii Senate today passed a bill requiring a two-thirds vote of the Legislature before ceded lands can be sold and a resolution urging the Republican governor and her attorney general to withdraw their appeal. The Democrat-controlled House, meanwhile, didn’t move similar bills by the deadline for consideration.

OHA’s response to the state petition bases its argument on the Apology Resolution, enacted by Congress in 1993, on the 100th anniversary of the Hawaiian monarchy. OHA maintains it places a cloud on the title to ceded lands, forcing the state government to hold them intact until questions of Native Hawaiian self-governance can be answered. Last year, the Hawaii Supreme Court upheld that view.

The state disagrees.

“These public trust lands were transferred by the Congress to the people of the state of Hawaii in 1959 for the benefit of all the people of the state of Hawaii to be used for the public purposes set out in the Admission Act like for the establishment of public schools and public improvements for betterment of homes and farms,” says Hawaii Attorney General Mark Bennett. “The Admission Act explicitly gave the state the right to sell or transfer ceded lands for the purposes set out in the Admission Act.”

Ceded lands comprise 1.2 million acres of land on all Hawaiian islands - about 29 percent of the total land mass of the state and more than 95 percent of the public lands held by the state.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Lingle held in effigy as Hawaiians converge

WAIKIKI – They have their differences among themselves, but all were united in their anger toward Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle.

Thousands of Hawaiians and “Hawaiians at heart” marched in the streets of Waikiki today and converged in Kapiolani Park to commemorate the 116th anniversary of the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii.

Even though a century has passed since U.S. forces came to the aid of a Hawaii provisional government and forced Queen Liliuokalani to abdicate her throne – and 50 years has passed since statehood – disputes between the Native Hawaiians and the state government are, if anything, becoming even more inflamed.

At most immediate issue is the Lingle administration’s appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court of a Hawaii Supreme Court opinion that placed a moratorium on the state selling ceded lands until an agreement could be worked out between the state and the Native Hawaiian people. That case is scheduled to be heard in Washington D.C. on Feb. 25.

Ceded lands are lands once owned by the Hawaiian monarchy but ceded to the state to be held in trust for Hawaiians. Ceded lands comprise 1.2 million acres of land on all Hawaiian islands - about 29 percent of the total land mass of the state.

Protesters carried a huge effigy of Lingle, along with signs saying “Lingle thou shalt not steal,” “Return stolen ceded lands” and “America get your ass out of Hawaii.”

Lingle could not be reached for comment today, a Saturday, but she has defended her administration’s actions in the past.

“Anyone who characterizes our taking this case to the United States Supreme Court as somehow being against Hawaiian rights is simply misrepresenting our position on the situation,” Lingle said in a Nov. 24 news conference defending the state’s stance. “The issue involving the ceded lands is an important one for the state because it affects all the people, the Native Hawaiians and non Native Hawaiians.”

Friday, December 26, 2008

Hawaiian protest peaceful

A couple dozen people waved signs in front of the Capitol and
today, in the first of several pickets planned to protest the state’s plans to sell some of its ceded land.

The dispute has reached the U.S. Supreme Court, where it is scheduled for oral arguments Feb. 25.

Protesters next plan a Jan. 17 march down Waikiki to Kapiolani Park.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Hawaiian land protesters hope to draw Obama's eye

Native Hawaiians in a land dispute with the state that has advanced to the U.S. Supreme Court plan a Dec. 26 rally at the state Capitol to try to draw President-elect Barack Obama’s attention to their battle. Obama is currently vacationing on Oahu.

The rally is set for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the Beretania Street side of the Capitol, fronting Washington Place. Organizer Vicky Takamine said in an email the rally is “to bring awareness to (Gov. Linda) Lingle's immoral claim that the state has the right to sell and/or transfer Hawaiian ceded lands … We're hoping to draw media attention while Obama is here for his vacation and urge him not to meet with her.”

The case centers on ceded lands - lands once owned by the Hawaiian monarchy but ceded to the state to be held in trust for Hawaiians. The Hawaii Supreme Court in January froze the land, which includes Maui lands as well as Laiopua on the Big Island, until Native Hawaiian claims can be settled.

Lingle, through her Attorney General Mark Bennett, appealed the decision and the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear oral arguments Feb. 25. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the respondent in the case, has until Jan. 21 to file its brief.

“Anyone who characterizes our taking this case to the United States Supreme Court as somehow being against Hawaiian rights is simply misrepresenting our position on the situation,” Lingle said in a Nov. 24 news conference defending the state’s stance. “The issue involving the ceded lands is an important one for the state because it affects all the people, the Native Hawaiians and non Native Hawaiians.”

Jon Van Dyke, an attorney representing Native Hawaiians in the case and author of the book, “Who Owns the Crown Lands of Hawaii?” said cultural differences contributed to the misunderstandings between Native Hawaiians and the people who moved to the islands later. Van Dyke was addressing the annual convention of the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement and its 91 Native Hawaiian member organizations the day the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would take the case.

“Hawaiians have a very different way at looking at the world than the Westerners who ultimately came,” Van Dyke said. “Aina (land) was not a commodity to be bought and sold, but rather it was something to be nurtured.”

Ceded lands comprise 1.2 million acres of land on all Hawaiian islands - about 29 percent of the total land mass of the state.

“There's no question that Hawaiians have strong claims to vast amounts of land,” Van Dyke said. “There's no question in my mind that Native Hawaiians are entitled to land.”

Native Hawaiian groups point to the Apology Resolution enacted by Congress in 1993, on the 100th anniversary of the Hawaiian monarchy, as placing a cloud on the title to ceded lands, forcing the state government to hold them intact until questions of Native Hawaiian self-governance can be answered. Last January, the Hawaii Supreme Court upheld that view.

The state disagrees.

“These public trust lands were transferred by the Congress to the people of the state of Hawaii in 1959 for the benefit of all the people of the state of Hawaii to be used for the public purposes set out in the Admission Act like for the establishment of public schools and public improvements for betterment of homes and farms,” Bennett said during the Nov. 24 news conference. “The Admission Act explicitly gave the state the right to sell or transfer ceded lands for the purposes set out in the Admission Act.”