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Saturday, November 20, 2010
November 20, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:08 PM :: 6887 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Republican Party, National News, Development, World News, Hawaii History

In face of opposition, lame duck Maui Council punts on property tax hike

BoE refuses to follow law: Rejects meal price increases

14 candidates seek District 1 Council seat vacated by Apo

The field seeking to succeed former City Councilman Todd Apo is set, with 14 candidates running for the District 1 seat representing Leeward Coast-Ewa.

Five more candidates filed by yesterday's 4:30 p.m. deadline.

LIST: http://www.honoluluelections.org/files/content/council_district_i_special_election_candidate_filing_111910-1.pdf

RELATED: Honolulu Council Special Election: Mel Kahele, Waimanalo Gulch, and other baggage, Special Election: Former Rep. Bob McDermott to seek Todd Apo’s Honolulu Council seat

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TAT, Water top Arakawa Agenda

WAILUKU - Probably to no one's surprise, the top priority of Hawaii State Association of Counties lobbyists - and Maui County Council members - is to eliminate their annual fight to retain the counties' share of transient accommodations taxes.

Also, Maui Mayor-elect Alan Arakawa said he will finish by the end of the month his list of water-centric funding priorities for the upcoming session, which starts the third week of January. Like his soon-to-be predecessor, Arakawa plans to reduce significantly the county's reliance on environmentally controversial injection wells.

"I'm still formulating a list of legislative requests," Arakawa said Friday. "It is one of my top priorities. I expect to have more by the end of the month."

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Carlisle hit over illegal seizure from pawn shop/fence

“The search warrant was limited to 16 specific items,” Brown said. “The city seized thousands of items. That was unconstitutional.”

Federal Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren agreed, writing "...the City violated Burke's constitutional rights by seizing items that were not in the search warrant."

The ruling said police made the illegal seizure based on a policy designed by a supervising prosecutor who said her boss, Carlisle, approved.

Brown said Carlisle's high-level approval made the case a violation of the federal Civil Rights Act. Even though the court only awarded Burke about $40,000 in damages, the city must also now pay his legal fees.

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Speaker: Say still 2 votes short, Rep Roy Takumi mentioned as possible compromise candidate

House Democrats remain stalemated over who will be their speaker — 24 for incumbent Calvin Say, 16 for Sylvia Luke, and Roy Takumi, Jessica Wooley and Cindy Evans on the fence.

Takumi, whose name is being bandied about as a compromise candidate, told Civil Beat today that he is open to new leadership if no candidate can get the necessary 26 votes among 43 House Democrats.

Say has been speaker since 1999 and has survived coup attempts before from progressive types in the House, and he's being advised to hunker down and wait for two more votes to come his way.

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Okino compared to neutered donkey

Shapiro: Big Island groups are rounding up wild donkeys near Waikoloa for neutering and relocation. They're following the same process the Democratic Party used to get rid of Gary Okino.

RELATED: Gary Okino forced to resign from Democratic Party, Even After Resignation, gay-dominated Oahu Democrats vote to oust Okino over Gay Civil Unions

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Advertiser, Eric Ryan team up to cheer attack on GOP Chair Michael Steele

SA: Gentry Collins, who quit this week as political director of the Republican National Committee, sent out a memo critical of the RNC’s fundraising and get-out-the-vote efforts under chairman Michael Steele.

Eric Ryan: So, an RNC insider blames Michael Steele’s poor leadership for Djou’s loss . . . the VERY SAME Michael Steele who was blindly supported over much better candidates for RNC chair by the Hawaii GOP’s three representatives to the RNC… (blablabla)

Collins letter: PPM170_gentry_collins_letter

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“Progressive” Ian Lind defends earmarks: Hamakua ditch spending at top of list

ILind: Here’s a list of earmarks that benefited Hawaii in 2010, including everything from crime prevention to agricultural research, and everything in between. It’s drawn from the database compiled by Citizens Against Government Waste, which includes past years as well and is searchable by state or by individual member of Congress.

Top of the list?  Hamakua ditch: http://ilind.net/misc%20/2010/pork2010.pdf  (Larry Mehau and Malama Solomon are very pleased at being so well watered.)

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Unity? Kona faction Council chair appoints Kenoi loyalist Co clerk

HILO -- Jamae Kawauchi, a Hilo attorney specializing in land use, civil and business litigation, has been chosen to be Hawaii County's next clerk, Hamakua Councilman Dominic Yagong said Friday.
"She certainly has the support of the majority of the County Council, if not the whole County Council, for this appointment," said Yagong, who is poised to become the council's next chairman.

Kawauchi was appointed by Mayor Billy Kenoi to serve on the county's 2009-10 Charter Commission.
Her husband, James Takamine, gave $700 to Kenoi's 2008 election campaign, according to reports Kenoi filed with the state Campaign Spending Commission.

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Kauai utility receives $110M loan guarantee

The Kauai Island Utility Cooperative has received a $110 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Agriculture….They say the guarantee includes nearly $73 million to back financing for hydroelectric plant improvements and a 10-megawatt naphtha/biodiesel fueled combustion turbine.

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University of Hawaii's Final Report from secret negotiations on HRS 343

From Hawaii Land Use Blog: Pursuant to Act 1, Session Laws of Hawaii 2008, University of Hawaii researchers prepared a report for the Hawaii State Legislature on Hawaii’s environmental review system. A copy of the document is available at http://goo.gl/yURmK.

For previous blog entries on this study, see:

HRS 343: http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/hrs2008/Vol06_Ch0321-0344/HRS0343/HRS_0343-.htm

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Abercrombie no response on Civil Commitment for pedophiles

The civil commitment programs enacted by other states have been assailed by critics as violations of the civil rights of offenders who have completed all the punishment and treatment programs available under criminal statutes.

Proponents tout civil commitment as a means to protect society from incorrigible predators.

Treatment afforded to the offenders in the state programs has had mixed results and various states have reported that the civil commitment system has been prohibitively expensive.

The federal civil commitment law can only be used against criminals convicted of federal sex offenses.

The law is named after the son of John Walsh, host of television’s “Most Wanted” show. Adam Walsh was kidnapped and murdered in Florida in 1981.

Hawaii Governor-elect Neil Abercrombie did not respond to a request for comment on whether a civil commitment law should be enacted here.

RELATED: Child molester back at work at Hawaii Legislature

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Honolulu Reporter searching for Court files on prostitution cases finds himself surrounded by Deputy Sherriffs

We filed a request with the police under the state's Open Records Law to see all arrest reports in prostitution cases from 2009. That was months ago, but we're still in talks over what's required to be made public.

In the meantime, we turned to the daily police blotter, a record about which there's no disagreement. It lists the names, addresses, etc. of every suspect arrested on Oahu and is available for anybody to review. Since July 8, we've been building a database of every person arrested on prostitution charges on Oahu. (We'll start telling you what we've found next week.)

To find out what happens to people arrested for the crime, we've also gone to District Court and paid to receive copies of the court records for a sampling of the cases. This week we returned to court, not to get copies of the other case files, just to review them….

Finally, one of the officer acknowledged, "We were called by them because you were haggling them."

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East-West Center Responds to Criticism

An East-West Center program, “Legacies of the Pacific War,” which EWC co-sponsored in July with the USS Arizona Memorial Museum Association and the National Park Service World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, has been the subject of some critical attention because of one complaint that the program was anti-veteran…. 

RELATED: UH Manoa Anti-Americans place E-W Center funding at risk, East-West Center hammered for “sustained, biased and politically-motivated attack on World War II veterans”

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Big Isle UH campus announced

AP: University of Hawaii officials signed a deal Friday to build a new community college in Kailua-Kona on Hawaii's Big Island, which they say will be the most energy-efficient campus in the nation.

Hawaii Community College Palamanui will enroll about 700 students starting in fall 2012 and feature windmills, photovoltaic cells, waterless toilets and sewage treatment for its 78-acre campus.

Waterless toilets???  Here’s a quick toilet question: How much water is “consumed” when a 1.6 gallon low flow toilet is flushed?  Answer: None.  The water is not consumed, it is moved from one place to another and mixed with waste.  But they can prolly save $$$ on the sewage treatment facility by installing these modern outhouses.  Beware of spiders.)

Windmill future: Wind Energy's Ghosts

MORE: Construction agreement signed for Hawaii CC at Palamanui

SA: UH deal will replace Kona college campus

WHT: Dates set for Palamanui road, building construction

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Micronesians sue to block cuts in Hawaii’s Taxpayer-Sponsored Healthcare Benefits

An estimated 12,215 aliens now reside in Hawaii via COFA. They moved here without VISAs, in most cases to take advantage of free healthcare, public education, low-income housing and other social services. These legal immigrants comprise less than 1 percent of the population, but consume more than 20 percent of Hawaii’s social services, according to state estimates.

TOTALLY RELATED: Abercrombie admits responsibility for costing Hawaii millions under Compact of Free Association

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No cash No PASH: Feeeel-good liberals renew assault on pig hunting

"If Inga thinks it's cruel than change the laws and we won't pursue at all and then see what problems will arise after that," said Ollie Lunasco, Oahu Pig Hunters Association President.

Lunasco says he's been called to remove 100 pigs in the last two years and he says the state directly refers people to him.

"The feral hog population is out of control right now, say it gets worse, is the Humane Society going to go trap them and put them away in a humane manner?  What are they going to do, call the government and say gee why aren't you taking care of this problem," said Lunasco.  "The reason on Oahu we use a lot of dogs is that the pigs don't run they sit and fight and if you don't have enough dogs to pin them the pigs going to chase you."

Gibson says there are more humane ways to control the pig population and eventually wants the method of using hunting dogs banned.

(No traditional rights here, eh?  But then pig hunters aren’t trying to shake down developers.)

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No cash, no PASH: Fighting over the meaning of the native Hawaiian rights defense in the Kalalau Valley

Yesterday Kauai attorney Dan Hempey (for the defendant-appellant) and prosecuting attorney Tracy Murakami (for the state-appellee) argued before the Intermediate Court of Appeals the case of State v. Pratt, involving a native Hawaiian convicted in the District Court of the Fifth Circuit for violating restrictions on camping in closed areas of Kalalau State Park. Pratt had unsuccessfully argued in a motion to dismiss charges in the trial court that his actions had been constitutionally protected traditional native Hawaiian practices. 

(Yes, but he wasn’t trying to shake down a resort developer so he has no rights.  Just like those poor fellows who were busted for transporting imu stones from Maui to Oahu via Superferry.)

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Kauai TVR fight: Director Ian Costa resigning from Planning

This will be of concern to anyone with business before the Planning Commission - think all those transient vacation rental non-conforming use applications filed just prior to the October 15 deadline and waiting for hearing dates….

ALSO: BYNUM DENIES REPORT OF ILLEGAL UNIT IN HOME AND BARRING INSPECTION

AND:  Having barred single-family TVRs outside visitor designation areas, what’s next for the County Council?

KGI: Mayor hints more ‘team’ changes to come--Costa to resign as planning director 

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Feds Won’t Block Aloha Petroleum’s Purchase of Shell Oil Hawaii Operations

The Federal Trade Commission has closed an investigation into Aloha Petroleum LLC’s purchase of Shell Oil Co.’s Hawaii gas station and terminal operations, a move that will significantly increase Aloha’s share of the state’s retail gasoline market and open opportunities for it on Maui and Kauai….

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A place to pay tribute to Hawaii's Fallen Law Enforcement

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - With all the memorials and places of honor in the state, you may be surprised to hear that there is no memorial for Hawaii's fallen law enforcement officers.

60 law enforcement officers in Hawaii have been killed in the line of duty - that includes officers from the Honolulu police department, neighbor island police departments, state and federal agencies, plus military police. Until now, there's been nowhere for people to go to pay tribute. Tiffany Johnson and her mother Joan Gribbin-Aiu are hoping to change that soon….

The police museum at HPD headquarters has a special section that pays tribute to fallen heroes, but right now, there's no memorial for all of the state's fallen law enforcement officers.

So, Tiffany and Gribbin-Aiu decided to take matters into their own hands and launched the Hawaii Fallen Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation, HLEMF, to get one built.

LINK: http://www.hlemf.org/

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Lame Duck: Web Censorship Bill Sails Through US Senate Committee

On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously approved a bill that would give the Attorney General the right to shut down websites with a court order if copyright infringement is deemed “central to the activity” of the site — regardless if the website has actually committed a crime. The Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA) is among the most draconian laws ever considered to combat digital piracy, and contains what some have called the “nuclear option,” which would essentially allow the Attorney General to turn suspected websites “off.”

COICA is the latest effort by Hollywood, the recording industry and the big media companies to stem the tidal wave of internet file sharing that has upended those industries

EFF: UPDATE: The Case Against COICA

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