Sunday, August 18, 2019
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Sunday, February 17, 2019
SB652: Will Legislators Give Drunk Rave Promoter $50M?
By Andrew Walden @ 4:41 PM :: 3337 Views :: Hawaii County , Ethics, Politicians

by Andrew Walden

Would you loan a drunk $50M?

SB652 is heading to a vote before the Ways and Means Committee Tuesday February 19 at 9:30AM.  Approved by the Senate Transportation Committee, the bill allegedly “authorizes the issuance of special purpose revenue bonds to assist Keahole FBO I LLC with planning, designing, constructing, equipping, and operating facilities for aviation services and aviation-related services at Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole.”  (UPDATE: WAM approves with amendments.)  

A companion bill, HB203, is already dead for the session.

According to State DCCA BREG, “Keahole FBO I LLC” is managed by Calvin Say’s former House Vice-Speaker Jon Riki Karamatsu and headquartered at Karamatsu’s Waipahu condo.

But a February 17, 2019 West Hawaii Today article says the $50M Special Purpose Revenue Bond is really for “AV8 partners…a holding company of Keahole FBO I LLC, the company identified in the bill currently making its way through the state Legislature. … The Kona Jet Center, being developed by AV8 Partners, will include a 36,000-square-foot hangar able to hold the largest private aircraft in the world, in addition to a 7,000-square-foot fixed-base operation, 50,000-gallon above-ground fuel facility and as much as 6 acres of new private ramp for its clients.”

According to BREG, AV8 Partners’ status is “no standing-entity converted”.  Organized December 20, 2017, it was a partnership between Karamatsu’s JRK Enterprises, LLC, and somebody named David Johnston.  The new 'converted' entity, AV8Partners, LP, was organized May 25, 2018.  Its sole listed partner is “AV8 GP LLC” which was organized one day earlier as a partnership between JRK Enterprises and Johnston.  All of these corporations are headquartered at Karamatsu’s Waipahu condo.  JRK Enterprises, LLC is “not in good standing” per BREG. 


Jon Riki Karamatsu campaigning for Honolulu prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro, 2012.  The State Supreme Court will soon be considering a petition for Kaneshiro’s removal. 

This is Karamatsu’s second try for Keahole money.  

In 2016, legislators foolishly considered loaning $10M to a very similar Jon Riki Karamatsu project, Keahole Management Group LLC, for “…planning, designing, constructing, and equipping facilities for the manufacturing and processing of products.” 

Karamatsu’s second scheme, Keahole FBO I LLC, was organized in August, 2016, just four months after first scheme died in conference committee.  Karamatsu then organized “Keahole FBO LP,” with Keahole FBO I LLC as the only listed partner, on May 31, 2018.  Like his ‘AV8’ corporations, all of these ‘Keahole’ corporations are headquartered at Karamatsu’s Waipahu condo.  Meanwhile, his 2016 vehicle, Keahole Management Group, LLC, is no longer in good standing, per BREG.

Akamai readers will remember that Karamatsu, drunk at twice the legal limit, crashed into a pillar on the Moanalua Freeway at 1:15 AM on the morning of Tuesday October 16, 2007.  This led to his demotion to House Judiciary Chair.   

After coming in 6th in the 2010 Democratic Primary for Lt Governor, Karamatsu went to work as a Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor under Keith Kaneshiro.  But on April 7, 2015, after a second DUI arrest, Karamatsu resigned.

In his resignation letter, Karamatsu intoned: “With the intense media coverage on my pending OVUII case, I do not want to be a distraction to the work of the department.”  Apparently his hope is that there will be no media coverage of his latest attempt at a sweetheart deal with his former colleagues.

Deputy Prosecutor Karamatsu moonlighting as Rave Producer.

As a prosecutor, Karamatsu in 2014 faced criticism for moonlighting as the security chief for a drug-induced rave party at Kakaako Makai Park.

HNN Reported:

…one of the key producers was Deputy Prosecutor Jon Riki Karamatsu.  His boss, Honolulu Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro did not know that Karamatsu was involved until weeks after the event. And sources say, Kaneshiro was not happy.

"I'm not somebody who's a big proponent of rave parties in general," says former Honolulu City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle, "They tend to have problems with alcohol and drugs and I can't imagine somebody who is a professional in the prosecutor's office endorsing that kind of behavior."

Karamatsu is proud of his involvement. His blog provides a running tally of all his convictions and has pictures of him on stage during the Love Festival.

In a January 18, 2019 blog post, Karamatsu writes about promoting—what else?--a Honolulu tavern--alongside his airport project on Opening Day:

My business partners and I are working to build facilities, infrastructure, and services for private jets at Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport (“KOA”), which will create jobs and revenue for Hawaii island and the State of Hawaii. Further, our entities are helping the State on improvements they want in their KOA master plan.

Further, my other business partner and I passed out coupon fliers for our client Minori Craft Japanese Tavern @minorihawaii , a Japanese restaurant located near the Hawaii Convention Center at 1731 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu 

Jon Riki Karamatsu mugshot from 1st DUI arrest.

 Deputy Prosecutor Jon Riki Karamatsu resigns after second DUI arrest

Jon Riki Karamatsu mugshot from 2nd DUI arrest.

An April 16, 2016 post on Karamatsu’s blog, written during his first run for money, describes working on “a development project in Kona, Hawaii and an EB-5 Regional Center based in Hawaii.”  The EB-5 Green Card program is characterized by Forbes as fraud-riddled and by Daily Caller as corrupt.

In an April 3, 2016 blog post, Karamatsu writes about: “…the companies that I’m a partner of, a number of which are being built from scratch in the areas of development, construction, aviation, hotel, manufacturing, EB-5 foreign investment, and events management. In the spirit of the music events business that I’m involved with….”

Channeling his narcissism, Karamatsu titles the post: “…If they judge you by extraordinary standards, then live super extraordinary lives….”

If he is so extraordinary, why does he need all of us average taxpayers to co-sign his loans?


2019 -- SB652: Keahole FBO I LLC

2019 – HB203: Keahole FBO I LLC

2016 -- SB2301: Keahole Management Group, LLC 

2016 -- HB2063: Keahole Management Group

WHT: Special purpose revenue bonds eyed for Kona Jet Center

2016: SB2301: Legislators Vote $10M for Drunk Driver to Promote Rave Parties





TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


808 Silent Majority

808 State Update AM940


ACA Signups Hawaii


Affordable Hawaii Coalition


Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Conservative Alliance

Aloha Life Advocates

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

American Mothers of Hawaii



Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Audit The Rail

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii 

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust

CAFR Hawaii

Castaway Conservative

Children's Alliance Hawaii

Children's Rights Institute

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Citizens for Recall

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

Conservative Forum for Hawaii

CSIS Pacific Forum

DAR Hawaii

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

E Māua Ola i Moku o Keawe

Farmers For Choice Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Get Off Your Butts!

God, Freedom, America

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aganst Assisted Suicide

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crime Victims' Rights

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defending Marriage

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Families for Educational Choice

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Firearm Community

Hawaii Fishermen's Alliance

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii Meth Project

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Right to Life -- Big Island

Hawaii Right to Life -- Oahu

Hawaii Shield Law Coalition

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HI Coalition Against Legalized Gambling



Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Homeless Crisis

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

Horns of Jericho Blog

House Minority Blog

House Republican Caucus YouTube


Hump Day Report

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

Judgepedia Hawaii

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes


Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii


National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons 

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Salvage The Rail

Save the Plastic Bag

School Choice in Hawaii

SIFE Remington

SIFE W. Oahu 

Sink the Jones Act

Smart About Marijuana--Hawaii

St Marianne Cope

State Budget Solutions Hawaii

State Policy Network

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Harriet Tubman Agenda

The Long War Journal

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Truth About Trade & Technology - Hawaii

UCC Truths

Union Members Know Your Rights

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

Valor in the Pacific

VAREP Honolulu

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii