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Friday, November 19, 2021
November 19, 2021 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:44 PM :: 2969 Views

Extreme Stinginess? A look at Accused Waimanalo Child Killers’ Bankruptcy Case

How is Maui Saving Hawaiian Lands?

Unemployment Drops to 6.3% for October

Sex Trafficking: Federal Grand Jury Issues New Indictment Against Leaders of Philippines-Based Church

Ala Wai: Corps of Engineers, City Attempt to Bamboozle Public Again

As With Other CWS Disasters, Latest pair of Child Killers Will Likely get Reduced Sentence

HNN: … But while the two face extended sentencing guidelines because of the age of the victim, legal experts say few child murder cases go to trial in Hawaii. Most end with plea deals and lighter sentences.

Earlier this year, Kevin Lehano and Tiffany Stone were sentenced to 10 years probation for their role in the death of their 9-year old daughter, Shaelynn.

The child was beaten and starved to death. Both pleaded no contest to manslaughter. They each served about four years in jail before being released.

Henrietta Stone, the girl’s grandmother, is the only one wanting to go to trial for murder.

Peter Kema, Sr. pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the death of his son “Peter Boy” and was sentenced to 20 years in 2017.

His wife, Jaylen Kema, also pleaded to manslaughter and got 10 years but was released after just one….

Finding the child’s remains could ease the pain for Isabella’s biological family members, who are heartbroken by the details of alleged abuse the girl suffered at the hands of her adoptive parents….

A recent child murder case that ended with a life sentence happened in federal court in 2015.  (Key word: ‘Federal’.)

Army soldier Naeem Williams was found guilty of killing his 6-year old daughter Talia Williams. He beat the girl to death. There is no parole in the federal system….

read … Prosecutor seeks toughest sentence in child murder case, but legal experts say most end with plea deals

Miske Co-Defendant Ready to Walk Away Laughing After 5 Years of Court Delays

ILind: … state Circuit Court Judge Fa’auuga To’oto’o deferred the question of whether pending felony assault charges against Michael Buntenbah should be dismissed for violating the courts’ speedy trial rule, which requires cases to get to trial within 180 days. Following a Tuesday morning hearing during which Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Lawrence Sousie said the state is not conceding a Rule 48 violation, To’oto’o continued the hearing until the morning of December 2.

Buntenbah faces federal drug-trafficking and “assault in aid of racketeering” charges in the Miske Enterprise case, although he is the only defendant in that case who is not charged with racketeering conspiracy. He is currently free on bond pending trial in the federal case.

The charges in this state case were filed in May 2017, and date back to an assault at Miske’s M Nightclub in January 2016. Buntenbah is charged with assaulting two men while he was working as a bouncer in the nightclub. He is accused of kicking one of the men in the face while he was held on the ground by others. Trial in the case was postponed a number of times, and there is now disagreement over whether the official 180-day period has been exceeded, after removing delays attributed to or agreed to by the defense.

Buntenbah was dropped from a civil lawsuit filed by the assault victims without admitting any liability after agreeing to a $30,000 settlement payment….

read … State Judiciary Fails Again

Most Hawaii elementary and middle schoolers are at least one grade level behind, testing shows

SA: … An analysis of fall testing data indicates that three-quarters of Hawaii’s public school students in first through eighth grades were at least one or two grade levels behind in math after the first quarter of the 2021-22 school year while two-thirds were also behind in English language arts.

State Department of Education administrators said Thursday that results of the “universal screener” testing are another indicator of how much the coronavirus pandemic set back learning among the system’s 163,000 students.

Administrators told the Board of Education they plan to (insert empty promises here) …

Some of the youngest students tested — in first and second grades — showed the worst proficiency in English and math in comparison to higher grade levels, while those in the third grade produced results significantly higher than their younger counterparts.

“This group of (third grade) students are the youngest group to have benefited from an uninterrupted, in-person kindergarten year,” said Phyllis Unebasami, DOE deputy superintendent. “This group of students was also prioritized for in-person learning last school year….

Students with disabilities and those who are learning English as a second language did even worse, according to the department’s analysis of the data. Only 6% of students with disabilities were at grade level in both math and English language arts, while only 12% of English learners were at grade level in English and only 9% in math.

Just 23% of economically disadvantaged students were at grade level in Eng­lish language arts, Uneba­sami said, while only 16% were at grade level in math….

Along ethnic lines, Micronesians scored the lowest, with only 9.4% at grade level in English language arts and only 5.2% at grade level in math.

Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders were the next lowest, with about 20% at grade level in Eng­lish language arts and less than 15% at grade level in math….

SA Editorial: Help students catch up, quickly

read … Most Hawaii elementary and middle schoolers are at least one grade level behind, testing shows

Spin and No promises: Rail is Hanabusa’s Clown Car

SA: … Deficit numbers are never simple math, based as they are on projected costs and revenues. Wednesday’s positive spin was predicated on some definites, including cost-cutting measures enacted by the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation, and some revised guesses about both future costs and projected revenue, which comes largely from rail’s share of state taxes….

The comments from HART Chairwoman Colleen Hana­busa and interim CEO Lori Kahikina did slow the clown car of negativity that has been dominating rail news to date. You can’t blame them for trying to change the narrative. After headlines about ballooning costs and such serious gaffes as wheels that don’t fit tracks, this project can’t take more bad news.

Hanabusa dropped a little more encouraging information Wednesday on the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s “Spotlight Hawaii” online conversation: Rail could be running from Kapolei to Aloha Stadium by the middle of next year. It wasn’t a promise — “I’d like to believe that some portion of the ridership is going to be able to take place sometime next year, maybe mid-year at the latest,” is how she put it…

Big Q: What’s your feeling nowadays about Oahu’s rail project?

read … Editorial: Don’t commit TAT funds to rail yet

Hawaii County Council Approves 3% TAT Hike

HTH: … County Deputy Finance Director Steve Hunt said that, based on data from the state Department of Taxation’s Council on Revenues, the 3% tax could generate $13.1 million for the county, which is still less than the more than $19 million that the county would have received as its share of the state TAT.

… Hamakua Councilwoman Heather Kimball introduced a bill in October that would implement the 3% tax beginning Jan. 1.

The council ultimately voted Thursday to pass on first reading a draft of Kimball’s bill that requires all taxpayers who pay the state TAT to also pay the 3% county tax, with collections to be carried out by a third party….

read … No Big Isle TAT exemption: Amendment to shield county residents from 3% accommodation tax fails

Dirtier than Coal: PUC RFP Opens Door to Wood pellet Burning at AES

IM: … The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission provided guidance to Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) and AES on November 3, 2021, should the companies decide to negotiate a power purchase agreement (PPA) related to the potential conversion of the AES coal plant to biomass.

The Commission detailed some of the important factors it considers when evaluating power purchase agreements between the Company and independent power producers….

Reality: Wood Pellets? Hawaii 'Green' Energy Scam is Dirtier Than Coal

read … HECO Proposed Oahu RFP for Bioenergy, Hydrogen, Waste-to-Energy or Geothermal

Incoming Maui deputy chief avoided past domestic violence charges

MN: … Maui County’s new police chief and his deputy appointee said that an alleged incident of reported domestic violence against the deputy more than 10 years ago in Nevada was “unfounded” and had been investigated….

According to 2010 Las Vegas Review-Journal articles, a possible domestic violence incident at the home of then-Metro Capt. Hank was under investigation. Hank was not arrested after police were called to his home, and a crime report was submitted to the District Attorney’s office for possible prosecution. However, no charges were filed, the Review-Journal reported….

2010: Police captain faces domestic violence counseling but no charges

read … Incoming deputy chief says past allegations ‘unfounded’ and ‘false’

Once Again, the ACLU Whines About Saving the Huge Mounds of Garbage Accumulated by Drug Addicted Vagrants

CB: … crews hauled away tarps, suitcases, bedding, clothing, chairs, a table, a solar panel, coolers, tool boxes, carts, hand trucks, dishes, a washing machine and more. The items, which filled up two trucks ….

(Two Words: ‘Meth Hoarding’)

SA: Alan Johnson, president of the Hina Mauka addiction treatment center, sees an increase in patients

read … Meth Hoarding

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