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Tuesday, November 4, 2014
November 4, 2014 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:49 PM :: 4058 Views

Find Your Polling Place and Print Out a Sample Ballot

Hawaii Voters 11th Most Powerful in USA

Supreme Court Upholds State's Right to Cut COFA Benefits

Project AWARE: DoE Awarded $12.7M for Federal Anti-Bullying Program

Hawaiian Electric announces plans for approval of pending solar applications

Faleomavaega Sued by Former Congressional Staff Attorney

The Link Between The SHAKA Movement and the Matrix

President Declares Disaster for Hawaii Lava Flow

US Attorney Appoints Election Officer to Investigate Voter Fraud in Hawaii

Your Ballot Explained: Issuing New Bonds

Radcliffe, Mitsunaga: Usual Suspects Buy in to Ige Campaign

PR: Ige's late contributions report also shows that some prominent supporters of Gov. Neil Abercrombie have donated to the state senator, including John Radcliffe, an influential lobbyist, and Dennis Mitsunaga, a contractor and longtime Democratic fundraiser who was among the governor's top donors.

Radcliffe: Gaming Industry Lobbyist, Progressive activist screen Abercrombie cabinet picks

Mitsunaga: HCDA ‘Small Business’ Reps: Kobayashi & Mitsunaga

read ... A List of the Usual Suspects

Omidyar in focus: the influence of big, big money on your vote

DN: Not only has his financial backing of the measure been deceptive, so too, has been the PR campaign his money has bought. We are being told the Ag Bonds Amendment (#2), will help "small," "local" farmers producing "food." But if you read the actual language, the beneficiaries are designated as "agricultural operations." There is no talk of "small" farmers as opposed to HUGE industrial ag operations. There is no requirement the companies be locally-owned rather than transnational corporations. And the benefits are aimed at ALL "agricultural operations," a much broader category than "food production." The most profitable agricultural operations in the state do NOT produce food, but produce GMO seed corn. This amendment is also being supported by bio-fuel advocates, who envision getting tax free bonds for planting bio-fuel crops.

The small, local farmers whose faces appear in the ads are those least likely to benefit from the issuance of these bonds, as their credit-rating is generally low, due to their inability to secure long term leases on farmlands, which makes their business plans vulnerable to factors beyond their control.

The PR campaign is consciously dishonest. Pierre's model of social change, using a marketing firm to manipulate of public opinion, bears responsibility for that. You cannot finance a wholly-owned astro-turf operation and pretend it is a grassroots coalition.

read ... Omidyar in focus: the influence of big, big money on your vote

8% Pay Hike: Abercrombie Rewards UHPA for its Support

SA: The $32 million contract includes 4 percent across-the-board raises in each of the next two years as well as increases to the minimum salaries members are paid by rank.

A full professor at the flagship Manoa campus currently earns $131,761 a year, on average, according to UHPA salary data. At the seven community college campuses, professors earn just under $89,000, on average.

The contract still requires funding from the Legislature.

UH President David Lassner has said student tuition will not be used to cover the cost of the salary increases. If lawmakers do not approve general funds -- tax revenue from the state's general fund -- for the agreement, the contract will not take effect.

read ... Abercrombie signs two-year labor contract for UH faculty

Borreca: Young People Prefer Republicans

Borreca: Baby boomers, considered the dominant and most powerful generational group in politics, is giving way to an even larger demographic: boomers' kids, the millennial generation. Boomers in the U.S., estimated at about 76 million, were born between 1946 and 1964. Millennials, born from 1980 to 1999, number 87 million.

A new poll taken by the Harvard Institute of Politics surveyed 2,000 of the group, finding that they are becoming more conservative and showing big divisions along racial lines.

The findings give Republicans new growing room among a voting group that had previously been owned by the Democrats.

"Our survey finds that likely young voters prefer Republican control of the Congress by a slim 4-point margin of 51 to 47 percent," the poll's summary says.

"A lesson here, for us, is that young people, millennials, are no longer the political outliers that they once were," said John Della Volpe, polling director, on a conference call with reporters.

read ... Bye Bye Boomers

Schatz No Comment on Lawsuit Seeking His Removal

AP: James Hochberg filed a lawsuit Thursday challenging the validity of the election, saying it is unconstitutional because Abercrombie did not issue a writ of election, which is required under the 17th Amendment. Hochberg said the Constitution requires that the governor issue a writ of election to replace the fallen senator, and that the replacement should take office as soon as the election is certified.

"It's just a completely unconstitutional process of replacing Inouye and there needs to be a do-over," Hochberg said.

Schatz declined comment through a campaign spokeswoman.

Cam Cavasso, Schatz's Republican challenger, also is named as a defendant in the case.

"I am a strict constitutionalist, and as such I believe that if the U.S. Constitution or Hawaii Constitution has not been followed, or has been violated, it must be made right," Cavasso said.

Pat Saiki, chairwoman of Hawaii's Republican Party, said she doubts the lawsuit will change the outcome of the election, but she hopes it will lead to change in the future.

"It's a legitimate complaint that has to be addressed," Saiki said.

Background: Lawsuit Seeks Removal of Schatz from Office

read ... Lawsuit

A quick look at campaign contributions since the August primary

ILind:  Democrats led Republicans overall by more than 2-1 in the period between August 10 and October 20.  (But a few GOP legislative candidates are leading in their respective races....)

read ... A quick look at campaign contributions since the August primary

Early Votes Down Statewide--Except Maui County

SA: On Oahu, 14,558 voters cast ballots through early walk-in voting that ended Saturday. Glen Taka­ha­shi, Hono­lulu election administrator, said that figure is down from roughly 24,000 in 2012 and 22,000 in 2010.

Early mail-in ballots showed similar trends. With some ballots still trickling in Monday, the county had received about 100,785 of the 131,230 ballots that were mailed out, Taka­ha­shi said. In 2012 about 113,500 of roughly 127,000 ballots were returned, and in 2010 about 96,000 of 104,000 mail-in ballots were returned.

Neighbor islands reported similar patterns.

Hawaii County finished with 6,441 walk-in ballots cast, down from 9,502 two years ago and 10,253 four years ago, said Pat Naka­moto, Hawaii County election administrator. Mail-in ballots were 19,177 as of Monday, compared with 22,245 in 2012 and 9,877 in 2010.

Walk-in ballots cast on Maui were 3,241, down from 4,089 and 3,691 during the past two elections, said Shirley Magi­ri­fuji, Maui County election administrator. Mail-in ballots on Maui bucked the trend, with 15,123 returned as of Monday, compared with 13,994 in 2012 and 10,497 in 2010.

And on Kauai, Lyndon Yoshi­oka, election administrator, said walk-in ballots cast were 3,384, slightly down from 3,885 in 2012 but up from 2,928 in 2010. Mail-in ballots cast as of Monday were 8,223, down from 8,601 in 2012 and up from 7,852 in 2010.

The early and absentee voting figures are potentially instructive because more voters have been voting by absentee ballot in recent elections.

read ... GMO-driven Votes

Maui GMO Vote Could have Worldwide Ramifications

AP: The vote in Maui County is interesting in that it wouldn’t affect the entire state, yet it could have ramifications well beyond the region. Hawaii, with its ideal climate and long growing season, is home to several research farms owned by seed companies. Monsanto has two facilities in the county — one on Maui and another on Molokai.

The state makes an ideal testing ground for corn because of the climate and the fact that there’s little or no chance of contamination from nearby farms, said Michael Aide, chairman of the department of agriculture at Southeast Missouri State University. “It’s a pristine environment in terms of the pollen,” Aide said.

As for what Monsanto would do if GMO cultivation were outlawed in the county, Lord would not speculate.

“But I can tell you that this initiative threatens not only the livelihoods of farmers on the islands, it would also cost Maui County $85 million per year in economic activity — without any legitimate scientific justification,” she said.

SA: Bill would repeal Kauai's voided GMO law

read ... Monsanto has eye on Election Day battles over GMO

Kucinich Endorses Maui Anti-GMO Initiative

SA: Dennis Kucinich, the former congressman from Ohio who was popular in Hawaii during his unsuccessful 2004 presidential bid, has recorded a telephone message in support of the initiative that would ban growing genetically engineered plants, also known as GMOs, in Maui County. The robo­call was being released Monday night on Maui, according to the Center for Food Safety.

"This is Dennis Kucin­ich. I love Maui, so I'm personally paying for this call to urge you to vote ‘yes' on the GMO moratorium," Kucin­ich says in the call. "In 2004, Maui Dems chose me for president.

read ... About a Nut

Lawsuit: Death Caused by Dietary Supplements

SA: The daughter of Lea­trice K.K. Sanchez filed a lawsuit Friday against Dallas-based USPlabs LLC in U.S. District Court in Hono­lulu.

Sanchez, 59, of Kapo­lei, died Oct. 11, 2013, at the Queen's Medical Center.

Kellyann N. Magnani says in her lawsuit that when her mother started using OxyELITE Pro in July 2013, her liver enzyme levels were elevated rapidly. Sanchez subsequently developed liver dysfunctions including severe jaundice, acute hepatitis, acute liver failure and other related injuries to her brain and respiratory system, according to the lawsuit.

Sanchez died from "fulminant hepatic failure due to, or as a consequence of OxyELITE Pro dietary supplement," according to the autopsy performed at Queen's, said David Ahuna, Magnani's lawyer.

read ... Lawsuit

Puna Voters Have Choice of Two Polling Places

HTH: While the June 27 lava flow has yet to reach Highway 130, election officials will still allow voters in precinct 04-03 to cast their ballot today in Hawaiian Paradise Park rather than Pahoa if they so chose.

The state Office of Elections announced Oct. 28 voters assigned to the Pahoa Community Center who live north of the lava flow were instructed to cast their ballot at the Hawaiian Paradise Community Center instead.

That was in anticipation of lava crossing the highway before Election Day, thereby making it difficult for about 2,000 registered voters to make it the polls.

The lava flow since has stalled 480 feet from Pahoa Village Road, and more than a half-mile from the highway, but Hawaii County Clerk Stewart Maeda said both locations will remain available to 04-03 precinct voters. The precinct covers voters in Ainaloa and lower Puna west of the highway and Pohoiki Road.

“Because we were anticipating the lava would have impacted Highway 130 by election day, that’s why it was chosen to consolidate,” Maeda said. “Because it hasn’t, we’re still allowing people to vote at either locations.”

Keonepoko Elementary School also remains open as a polling place, he said.

This is the second time this year election officials have made changes to voting in lower Puna because of disasters.

read ... Vote Early, Vote Often?

Soft on Crime: Hawaii Has Fewest Old Prisoners

HA: To better understand inmate aging trends on a state-by-state level, State Health Care Spending Project researchers partnered with the Association of State Correctional Administrators to survey state officials. Specifically, corrections administrators were asked to provide the percentage of inmates age 55 or older in their state prison populations each year from fiscal 2007 to 2011. During this period, the percentage of older prisoners increased in all but two of the 42 states that provided data (Hawaii and Mississippi), and the average share of older inmates increased from 6.2 percent of all inmates to 8.2 percent. The proportion in fiscal 2011 ranged from less than 6 percent in New Jersey, Minnesota, Indiana, Hawaii, and Connecticut to more than 13 percent in Oregon, Vermont, and West Virginia.

read ... Examining State Prison Health Care Spending: Cost Drivers And Policy Approaches

Honolulu Prosecutor: Newspaper Op-Ed Was ‘Uninformed, False Statements’

CB: A recent opinion column in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser concluded that the prosecutor’s office manipulated a grand jury to squash any charge against police Sgt. Darren Cachola because prosecutors wanted to find a way to do so without having to accept the responsibility and resulting criticism.

The column went on to disparage prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro, saying, “Since the decision not to indict Cachola, Kaneshiro has presented himself to the media as a crusader against domestic violence. We hope he is serious, but considering his office’s dismal record of bringing domestic violence cases to trial and obtaining convictions, we cannot help but wonder.”

The column was written by David Johnson, Meda Chesney-Lind and Nicholas Chagnon of the University of Hawaii’s School of Social Sciences. They arrived at their conclusion even though they did not know what drove the decision to take the case to a grand jury, what evidence and witnesses were presented to the panel, or what interactions took place in the room. They also made uninformed and false statements about the purpose of a grand jury and how it functions.

As the column called into question the integrity of the prosecutor’s office, we asked the Star-Advertiser if we could submit a detailed rebuttal. We were told that any rebuttal would have to be limited to a 150-word letter to the editor....

read ... Dave Koga

Developer team to remodel, expand Mayor Wright Homes

KHON: Hunt Companies was chosen to be the lead developer that will transform Mayor Wright Homes into a mixed-used residential complex, looking to increase the amount of rental apartments to about 1,200-1,500.

Other members of the master developer team include McCormack Baron Salazar and the Vitus Group. The team reportedly has collectively designed, planned, funded, developed, constructed and managed 91 similar multifaceted projects, as well as more than 2,000 affordable housing projects across the country.

“All of our tenants are protected by federal law,” said HPHA’s Hakim Ouansafi, “and an area plan we will negotiate will include making sure that they are relocated until the project is completed.”

KITV: Currently Mayor Wright has 364 units. The developer will look to expand it to anywhere between 1,200 and 1,500.

read ... Mayor Wright

Tougher Visa Requirement to Keep ISIS out of US 

HNN: The Homeland Security Department is adding new screening requirements for Europeans and other travelers from countries for which a visa isn't required for U.S. entry.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson says travelers from 38 Visa Waiver Program countries, including most of Europe, will have to provide more passport data, contact information and aliases before they can travel to the United States.

The move comes amid growing concern of threats from Western fighters returning from Syria.

read ... Religion of Pieces

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