Ige Appoints Lei Learmont to Replace Rep Oshiro in HD46 Wahiawa
Important Tax Law Changes for 2018
150M Muslims Barred: Ninth Circuit Finds Trump’s 3rd Travel Ban Illegal
Rail: Kakaako Developer Demands $200M from HART
HNN: …One of Kaka'ako's largest landowners is asking the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation to pay more than $200 million for land the agency still needs to acquire in the area – a price tag $186 million more than the city's most recent offer.
City Councilmember Joey Manahan told Hawaii News Now on Friday that rail authority members believe the land in question is worth $14 million. Because of the price discrepancy, HART is now seeking to condemn more than a dozen parcels owned by the Howard Hughes Corporation.
Manahan says the agency is willing to let a judge decide a fair price for the land because the Howard Hughes' asking price would push the $8 billion dollar project even further over budget.
“To put this into perspective, the original estimate to finish the remainder of the (rail) project is $550 million,” said Manahan.
Manahan also argued that Hughes properties will benefit greatly from the rail running through an area filled with their new highrises and retail developments….
FAKE: Consultant to Explore Partnerships for Rail’s Final Stretch
read … Kaka'ako land dispute could push rail project even further over budget
Maui Wind farm seeks OK to kill 10% of endangered bat population
MN: With the number of bat deaths rising faster than expected at its Ulupalakua wind farm, Auwahi Wind Energy is seeking government permission for the “taking” of more endangered Hawaiian hoary bats.
A proposed amendment calls for increasing Auwahi’s take (a term meaning incidental fatalities of endangered species) from 21 to 197 through the end of the 25-year permit in February 2037.
The state Department of Natural Resources has determined that a supplemental environmental impact statement is needed….
read … Lots of Dead Bats
Property Taxes May go up 6.1%
SA: …Property valuations on Oahu rose all over the place. For private homeowners, valuations have generally increased 6.1 percent for the 2018-19 tax year (results may vary depending on your neighborhood). Hotel/resort, commercial and industrial properties have gone up even more. So while the tax rate may not change, there’s a good chance the amount paid by you — or your landlord — will go up.
read … Tax Hike
BoH, 1st Hawaiian Employees Win ‘Fight for $15’ and Score $1000 Bonus Thanks to President Donald J Trump
PBN: Bank of Hawaii will increase its minimum wage levels from $12 to $15 per hour starting in January, as well as pay $1,000 in cash bonuses to 95 percent of its staff, changes it says were accelerated by the passing of the new GOP tax bill....
read … Enough to pay their Obamacare Premiums!
American Savings to give employees $1K bonuses, raise minimum wage to $15.25
SA: …The state’s third-largest bank said today it will award $1,000 bonuses to nearly all of its employees, excluding members of its executive team. American Savings, which has 49 branches, said 1,150 employees will receive the bonus on Friday.
In addition, the bank said it is increasing its starting wage to $15.25 an hour from $12.21 an hour, effective Jan. 1….
American Savings said it is handing out bonuses and boosting wages as a result of the passage of the $1.5 trillion Republican tax overhaul, which will save companies money by lowering income taxes. The federal corporate tax rate will be reduced to 21 percent from 35 percent beginning Jan. 1….
WND: 17 companies announce bonuses, more pay, expansion
read … American Savings to give employees $1K bonuses, raise minimum wage
Bonfire of the Vanities: Chin to Dispatch Two Members of Smug Millennial Caucus
SA: Doug Chin, Hawaii’s attorney general and a Democrat, said the past year of legal battles against White House policies spurred him to run. Hawaii has led or joined lawsuits to block Trump directives on immigration and health care.
There’s state Rep. Beth Fukumoto, who’s exploring a run for Congress after turning Democrat and getting some national press for fending off backlash from then-fellow Republicans for her criticism of candidate Trump. After Trump’s election, she participated in the Honolulu Women’s March.
Then there’s state Rep. Kaniela Ing, a Democrat, whose campaign website declares: “Fighting Trump is important, but ‘no’ is not enough. We need progress beyond resistance.” Ing champions universal basic income, tuition-free college, equal rights, Medicare-for-all. As un-Donald as it can get.
State Sen. Donna Mercado Kim’s Democratic POV comes through in vowing to “work tirelessly to preserve and expand Medicare, and fight to ensure continued and expanded Social Security for our senior citizens.”
Already a lively slate. Let’s see who else runs, especially from the Republican Party….
read … Bonfire
Calif. court moves forward with extradition for escaped Hawaii killer
HNN: The San Joaquin Superior Court on Friday served escaped psychopathic killer Randall Saito with a California Governor's Warrant that authorized his return to Hawaii, according to the office of Hawaii's Attorney General. …
A status hearing will be held on January 5 to make arrangements for Saito's physical transport back to Hawaii. Attorney General Doug Chin says the state has made arrangments with the U.S. Marshal's Service to have Saito flown back to Hawaii on a non-commercial flight. …
He arrived in California two hours before the State Hospital informed police that he was missing — a fact that prompted the state to launch an investigation and put a number of workers on unpaid leave.
In interviews after his arrest in California, Saito admitted to killing Yamashiro and said he faked mental illness to get out of prison sentence.
read … Extradition
Waianae Tweekers Camp Claims ‘News’ Organization would not do Fluff Piece on them Without State Permission
HNN: The leader of Waianae's largest homeless village was hoping a film production crew working on a show for CNN would help tell their story to the world – until the crew's application for a one-day filming permit was denied by the state.
"They were going to bring more awareness to see if we can get more help out there, like sponsors and what not," said Twinkle Borge, the leader of Puuhonua O Waianae…. (Fundraising video.)
(And so ‘news’ organizations only do stories if the State gives them permission?)
The Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources objected to the film crew giving the Waianae homeless camp national publicity, saying the following in a statement:
"Bringing attention to this area on a national level has the possibility of suggesting that the State is okay with the current human occupation on this property, and while we continue to be in discussions with various parties about this property and its future use, at the moment we are not interested in the possibility of people living there being inaccurately or inappropriately portrayed to a national television audience." ….
The film company (“film company”???) that was denied a permit did not respond to our calls…..
read … Waianae homeless leaders say the state blocked a CNN story about their camp
Homeless Trash Mother Waldron Park, Get Tickets
SA: …A handful of homeless people at Mother Waldron Park in Kakaako on Friday packed up and headed out to someone else’s neighborhood after Honolulu police began issuing citations for the illegal encampment that swelled this week.
As of Thursday night, HPD officers had issued five citations for having tents in the city park; six for violations of park closure hours; and two for shopping cart violations, said city spokesman Adam LeFebvre.
Mother Waldron’s homeless population jumped this week to an estimated 50 chronically homeless people and a dozen dogs after the Hawaii Community Development Authority closed the state-owned Kakaako Gateway Parks near the University of Hawaii medical school Sunday to repair damage caused by previous homeless encampments….
Many of the homeless people in the city’s Mother Waldron Park have been on the streets for years and had been staying in one of the country’s largest homeless encampments, which sprang up in the summer of 2015 around Kakaako Waterfront Park….
Related: How Tickets Forced 16 Homeless to accept Housing
read … Police cite homeless at Mother Waldron Park
More Mindless Eco-Hysteria Masquerading as Science