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Tuesday, February 16, 2010
February 16, 2010 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 1:02 PM :: 10215 Views

LINK>>>HB2241/SB2303: Bills would seize Ceded Lands from Hawaiians 

Kalapa: Lawmakers on a zigzag course for tax legislation

There is no doubt that lawmakers have their eyes trained on potential revenue enhancements -- read tax increases -- this year as they scrape the bottom of the barrel and shake out their pockets looking for the tiniest bit of overlooked change.

However, at the same time, some lawmakers don't seem to comprehend the gravity of the state's financial situation as they continue to introduce measures that will result in revenue losses. From tax credits for alternative energy facilities to exemptions from the general excise tax for the sale of electric vehicles and electric vehicle charging systems, lawmakers seem oblivious to the revenue losses the proposals represent.

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Audit: Waihee’s RightStar short $22.6M  (Graverobbers now targeted for collection)

Five years after accusing former Gov. John Waihee and others of illegally diverting tens of millions of dollars from funeral home trust accounts, the state attorney general is poised to try to collect the money….

The audit of RightStar's books has now been filed in Circuit Court. It says that trust funds maintained for the benefit of some 50,000 customers are $22,621,567 below legal requirements….

Acceptance could "judicially establish these unsupported figures as trust deficit amounts for which recovery may be sought against former trustees," the McCorriston firm argued.

But former Circuit Judge Marie Milks, who was appointed by McKenna to operate the RightStar family of companies for the court, argued for adoption of the audit.

"RightStar's financial records were left in a mess by the actions of the former trustees," Milks said in court papers.

McKenna granted a motion to approve the audits.

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New campus needed (OHA blocks UHWO)

Legislators are seeking an appropriation of $48 million for the project and a change in state law that would exempt the state from needing legislative approval to sell state lands that are not ceded land. That would allow it to sell 55 acres next to the campus to finance construction.

(Screwed in passing by OHA)  

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Hit on Gov hurts rail, Abercrombie says (Abercrombie preparing to blame Mufi for failure of rail)

"You would think the approach would be an invitation for Lingle to participate, not calling her names and threatening her and trying to push her around, sign something you never saw before," Abercrombie said….

"The problem goes back to the mayor saying, 'If you are not for me and what I say is rail, then you are against rail.' That is factually and demonstrably not so. That is why I find it dispiriting and destructive for the mayor to make this adverse position with the governor."

Abercrombie said yesterday that Hannemann has let the situation "devolve."

"Rail is too important to have to be the victim of a personal political agenda.

"You can't blame the governor for wanting to actually see the EIS before committing to it," he said.

TOTALLY RELATED: Hanauma Dec 29: Did Mufi threaten retaliation against Obama? , Good News: A small elite no longer runs Hawaii -- Bad News: Mufi thinks he can

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Contractors’ Assn: Jobs created by rail project would help whole state

The Honolulu Rail Transit Project is the biggest immediate (???) job stimulus spark plug available in the state of Hawaii today. It would put thousands of our people back to work starting this year (???)….

(Wrong on both counts.  Contractors are wasting their time trying to make this doomed project a reality when they could be building or re-paving roads.)

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Hotel revenues fell a lot in 2009 - but not at year's end

For the full year, Oahu hotel occupancy was 73%, with 62% in Maui County, 60% on Kauai, and less than 55% on the Big Island. There was a wide disparity between 75% occupancy in Waikiki versus 63% occupancy on the rest of Oahu, but not as much difference from district to district on other islands.

Statewide occupancy was 66.5%, third highest in the United States. Occupancy was 77% in New York and 72% in San Francisco. In fourth and fifth place were Miami, 65%, and Washington D.C., 65%. For average room rate, Hawaii came in second to New York, with Washington third followed by Miami and Boston. Hawaii was also second to New York on revpar.

(In other words, the State is planning for perfection in tourism--any slippage from absolute perfection leads to the financial disaster we are seeing today.)

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SB: Hawaii's Homeless: Visitors' growing unease has industry leaders worried

Florida residents Darina and Joseph Ferrini have visited Hawaii more than six times since the 1970s, but after their last stay in Waikiki, they say they will not be back unless the state bids aloha to its burgeoning homeless problem.

During their trip, the couple had several encounters with homeless people who were using drugs, begging for money, swearing, fighting and even masturbating on the beach.

The Hawaii Hotel Visitor Industry Security Association has seen about a 12 to 14 percent increase in Waikiki crime, Eastman said. Hotels have reported more car break-ins, trashed bathrooms and freeloaders at buffets, he said.

(Thank God for the tourism industry.  Without it, liberals would use the ACLU to sink Oahu under an army of homeless.)

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ADV: Dancing around the H-word

Homeless. The people that nobody wants to be seen as targeting.

Except that Bills 7 and 8 do target the homeless, and that's perfectly fine.

Despite the availability of space at existing shelters, it's clear that many of the most determined campers have no interest in coming in from the warm.

So in addition to going after tents and carts, Mayor Mufi Hannemann should consider creating a secure, open space for the homeless to set up their tents. Other municipalities have done so successfully.

But until that happens, the homeless need to be steered toward shelters, where there are social workers available to help. Police officers have to increase the pressure so that illicit camping and storing of personal goods on public property becomes untenable.

(Wow.  Somebody at the Advertiser get it!)


Kapiolani Park: Homelessness industry takes Hawaii tourism hostage
Defeating the "homelessness industry" before it gets a grip on Hawaii

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Hoku Scientific CEO to step down: Shindo will remain with struggling Isle high-tech company as senior adviser

(Your tax dollars at work) Paul will inherit a company that still needs to find some financing to complete the polysilicon manufacturing facility and has lost money in 12 of the past 13 quarters. Paul, however, said he remains sure about Hoku's ability to succeed.  (And this is the most successful of ACT 215/221 companies.  Note that the phrase “tax credits” appears nowhere in this so-called news article.)

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Flag Waving Restrictions Outrage Ewa Residents


RELATED: Child Molester’s friend, Rep. Cabanilla blocks flagpole bill



State launching site for camping reservations, park lodging


This conversion to an Internet-based system, which is part of the Lingle-Aiona Administration's ongoing effort to provide more online services for the public, "will vastly improve the service and convenience for both local and out-of-state park visitors in obtaining camping and lodging permits," said a statement from the DLNR.

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Tongans in Hawaii planning relief efforts in wake of tropical cyclone

The storm battered Tonga overnight, causing widespread damage. So far, though, no deaths have been reported.

Tongans locally say they are slowly getting through to their relatives and friends, though communication is still difficult because phone lines are down.

"Some people have gotten through with text message," said Ema Arelliano, a member of the First Tongan United Methodist Church of Waimanalo.

VIDEO: Communication still down Tonga while clean up begins

SB: No reports of cyclone deaths in Tonga

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Pirate who boarded Japanese ship, demanded ransom, to face trial in Japan

(Ship named after millionaire pirate financier sinks after pirate ‘captain’ steers into path of whaler.)

VIDEO: Pirates get taste of own medicine

PHOTO: Millionaire Ady Gil with dog (yes, he is male) 

Canada National Post: Good riddance, Ady Gil

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Marines say Taliban resistance more disorganized

Squads continued with their house-to-house searches, removing bombs and booby-traps as they moved through town. Inside some compounds today, squads found small doses of heroin, a Taliban photo album with fighters posing with AK-47s, and large propaganda wall paintings of insurgents shooting down helicopters.

(Heroin.  How the Talibs keep their ‘army’ motivated.)

Residents said they were scared to be seen with NATO forces. One man, Wali Mohammad, warned an AP reporter, "Don't take pictures or the Taliban will come back to kill me," as Marines searched his compound.

(Murder.  How the Talibs keep civilians under control.)

(Propaganda.  If Bush were President, this article would be all about alleged ‘civilian’ casualties and how horrible the Americans are.  But we have a Democrat President so the Democrat media tell the story straight.  That’s how they keep YOU under control.)

RELATED: TODAY: Hawaii National Guard members deploy to Afghanistan

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