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Friday, August 15, 2014
August 15, 2014 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:23 PM :: 4494 Views

All Four Gubernatorial Candidates to Appear at Grassroot Institute Forum

Aiona, Ahu, Djou, Cavasso -- Lokai Rally August 23

Hawaii Statehood: Tiny 1959 opposition was anti-Japanese, not anti-American

Judge Rejects Lawsuit To Delay Puna Voting--Polls Open Fri 7AM

Abercrombie Has Vested Interest in Quick Puna Vote

Judge Nakamura: Puna Votes "Even if it is Unconstitutional"

HI House leader ousted in election primary amid controversy

Faleomavaega Skips Visit of Key House Committee to American Samoa

Applicants Sought for the Hawaii Elections Commission

DBEDT Releases New Edition of Hawaii Data Book

Report: 14% of Hawaii HS Grads Leave State Within 12 Months

"The Giver" -- Opens Today Oahu, Maui, Kona, Hilo

Election Day in Puna: Area’s Voter Profile Bodes Well For Schatz

CB: They’re mostly white, the women outvote the men and a large percentage usually doesn’t bother to vote at all....

Schatz has already won the other two Puna precincts, HD4-03 and HD4-04, and many other ballots have already been cast by early walk-in and by mail in the precincts voting Friday.

There’s reason to believe more people will vote in Friday’s election than usual as a result of the intense focus on Puna over the past week. And on Friday morning turnout was steady although not crowded....

read ... Election Day in Puna: Area’s Voter Profile Bodes Well For Schatz

Ige Could be Defeated by AWOL Democrat Voters

Borreca: Democrats would be wise to approach the next three months cautiously because a lot could go wrong....

Back in 1998, former Maui Mayor Linda Lingle lost the general election to Gov. Ben Cayetano. Lingle got 197,000 votes in that loss.

Four years later, she came back and won with just 197,000 votes.

Cayetano won in 1998 with 204,000 and Mazie Hirono lost in 2002 with 179,000 votes. So the entire voting pool shrank.

That could happen this year as Democrats, either dispirited by Abercrombie's trampling or just not interested in an Ige candidacy, stay home and let Aiona take it.

Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia Center for Politics, reported this week that "Abercrombie's defeat by 36.1 points is the largest primary loss by any sitting governor in U.S. history."

read ... Stay at Home Democrats

Cook: Hawaii Governor's Race a Toss Up

PR: “This year’s race has an added complication in the form of former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, who has entered the race as an independent. Hannemann lost the gubernatorial nomination to Abercrombie in 2010, meaning that his presence on the ballot seems likely to hurt Ige more than Aiona.  The three-way race creates a lot of unknowns.  At the same time, it creates an opening for Republicans.”

read ... Toss Up

Incompetence Behind Latest Rail Cost Overruns

HR: Slater, who heads, disputed Grabauskas’ claim that legal challenges have increased the cost of the project.

“The delay was not caused by and its members. We had originally filed our lawsuit challenging the Final EIS in early 2011. Lawsuits in such cases cannot be filed until the Federal Transit Administration files its Record of Decision on the Final EIS so we could not have filed earlier. Our attorneys were well experienced in environmental law cases. In fact, our lead attorney wrote the regulations that implemented the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). At the time we filed the lawsuit our attorneys believed that it would all be resolved by the end of 2011. In the end, it was settled in 2014, over two years later,” Slater said.

“The City caused the delay by doing everything possible to impede a verdict; they believed that if they could get a sufficient portion of the rail line built before the verdict that the judges would allow that to influence their decision. I guess they were right. If you talk to our attorneys about the inordinate number of motions filed by the City, or review when we finally got the Administrative Record versus the time that it normally takes, you will see clearly that the City was fighting a delaying game the whole time,” Slater added.

“In addition, I do not believe that the City was ever precluded from putting the stations out to bid should they have wanted.”

Panos Prevedouros, PhD., a professor of engineering at the University, who has been a vocal opponent of the rail project, also dismissed Grabauskas’ claims.

“Anyway he cuts it, inflation is responsible for less than 10 percent of the 75 percent disparity,” Prevedouros said. “What should be startling is city's and HARTs incompetence to price their project. Two of the three bidders offered to build it at double the cost the city budgeted.”

read ... Incompetence

Lassner to recommend languages dean as UH-Manoa interim chancellor

KHON: In a statement, Lassner said he plans to recommend to the Board of Regents that Dr. Robert Bley-Vroman be appointed to the position, effective September 1.

Bley-Vroman currently serves as Dean of the College of Languages, Linguistics and Literature and has been a faculty member at UH-Manoa since 1987.

“Dr. Bley-Vroman is committed to maintaining the high standard for campus communications that our students and faculty have made it clear they expect and that we all believe they deserve,” Lassner said. “We have also discussed key immediate and short-term activities that he will undertake and I will support.” ...

Lassner stressed that Bley-Vroman did not seek the position.

Lassner said the decision was made after consulting with campus constituencies, including the Faculty Senate Executive Committee, the Associated Students of the University of Hawaii, the Graduate Student Organization, the Kualii Council, the University of Hawaii Association of Research Investigators (UHARI) leadership, the Council of Deans and the Vice Chancellors.

SA: Other goals include performing an "objective, forward-looking review of how the UH Cancer Center can be strengthened"

read ... Soon to be Permanent?

Jury Finds Deedy Not Guilty of Murder

CB: The 12 jurors, who had been deliberating since Aug. 5, were hung on all of the lesser chargers, which the judge said he could be retried on later.

It was the second time Deedy has been tried on a charge of second-degree murder in the Nov. 5, 2011, incident at a Waikiki McDonald’s. Deedy’s first trial ended in a hung jury nearly a year ago....

During opening statements at his new trial July 10, Deedy’s Honolulu attorney Thomas Otake repeatedly told jurors that the federal agent was acting under the color of law when he killed Elderts.

Deedy was simply sticking up for his friends and another customer who Otake said were being bullied by Elderts and his friend, Shane Medeiros.

“He did what he had to do,” Otake said. “The evidence will show that he did what he was trained to do.”

KHON: Legal experts say a third trial unlikely for Deedy

read ... No Lynch Mob in Hawaii Today

Send feds opinions on sovereignty

SA: The deadline is fast approaching to weigh in on whether Native Hawaiians should seek to re-establish a government-to- government relationship with the United States.

Native Hawaiians turned out in large numbers at public hearings held by the U.S. Department of the Interior earlier this summer, with most testifying that they opposed seeking federal recognition and the nation-within-a-nation status it confers, similar to that held by American Indian tribes and Alaska Natives. Proponents of federal recognition, however, insist that such status would protect institutions and programs favoring Native Hawaiians from future legal challenges.

Attendance at the hearings was not required in order to submit testimony; opinions can be voiced online, at Comments must be received by Aug. 19.

read ... Deadline

DOE Outsources Teacher Mentoring for $3.5 Million

CB: The state partnered with a national nonprofit, the New Teacher Center, in 2012, but some educators say the task is better handled locally.

read ... Outsource

In Midst of Hurricane, Activists Whine About Geothermal 'Pollution'

SA: When PGV lost transmission lines to the HELCO grid at 7:30 p.m., the plant shut down as designed, and caustic soda and water were added to the steam to "scrub" it of hydrogen sulfide, PGV said.

Most of the sulfur-smelling steam was released within the first 10 minutes, PGV said. The rest was released and the wells shut down in about 45 minutes, but a valve malfunction caused a low steam flow for 15 minutes more.

County Civil Defense alerted residents to evacuate if feeling ill, but PGV said "there was no need to evacuate" since a PGV worker monitored levels at "the fence line" and found a peak reading of 25 parts per billion.

"The Health Department requires that we not exceed 25 ppb on an hourly average," PGV said.

(The rest is about somebody claiming to pass out after being trapped in his home.)

read ... Activists

Public Utilities Commission seeks input on Demand Response

IM: The Public Utilities Commission has requested public input on the HECO Companies (HECO, MECO and HELCO) "Integrated Demand Response Portfolio Plan.”

Comments may be mailed or filed electronically. All comments should clear say “Docket Number 2007-0341.” The comment deadline is September 8, 2014.

The mailing address is: Public Utilities Commission, 465 South King Street, #103, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813.

Electronic filing is a two-step process. First email accounts must be registered. Within 2 business days of registering you will receive an email to active your account. Then submit your comments electronically. Parties in other PUC dockets do not have to file hard copies with anyone.

The Public Utilities Commission asserts that “demand response programs provide incentives to utility customers, usually in the form of payments or bill credits, to change how they would normally use electricity by "shifting" all or a portion of their usage to a different time period.”

read ... Public Utilities Commission seeks input on Demand Response

Age 18-20? Honolulu Council Says Marijuana Yes, Tobacco No

SA: Bill 51 now goes to the Council Public Safety Committee, where it likely will be heard Aug. 26.

If approved, the measure would prohibit both distribution and purchase of tobacco and electronic smoking products for anyone under 21 beginning Jan. 1.

Those already 18 or older on Jan. 1 would be "grandfathered," or exempted from needing to follow the law.

NOTE: At ages 18-20 you will be able to buy 'medical' marijuana legally but not tobacco.  Message:  If you must smoke, smoke weed--but not out of a vaporizer.

read ... Tobacco Only

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