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Tuesday, October 18, 2022
October 18, 2022 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:58 PM :: 1886 Views

Breiner Busted: Reprimand for Kealoha Conflict of Interest

Red Hill Pipeline Defueling Delayed Due to Water Main Break

Money Pours into Hawaii Democrats’ Pockets -- AFTER They Win

CB: … Winning the Democratic primary has been good for Jill Tokuda’s campaign coffers.

The former state senator is running for Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District, which covers rural Oahu and the neighbor islands, and is all but assured victory in November given the state’s penchant for electing Democrats.

Still, she reported raising $104,200 from political action committees between July 25 and Sept. 30, according to her latest quarterly filings with the Federal Election Commission. The records indicate that about three-quarters of those funds were donated after the Aug. 13 primary….

Schatz and Hawaii Congressman Ed Case are also on this year’s November ballot, although neither is in danger of losing their seat.

Case’s campaign reported raising about $158,000 in the previous quarter while Schatz’s campaign reported nearly $312,000 in total contributions.

About two-thirds of their donations came from PACs representing a wide range of special interests….

Case reported having more than $501,000 in cash on hand at the end of the reporting period while Schatz’s campaign still had $3.2 million in the bank.

Case is facing off against GOP challenger Conrad Kress in the general election. Kress has reported raising nearly $66,000 total for his campaign, including just over $23,000 in the previous quarter, and had about $11,000 in cash on hand as of Sept. 30.

Republican State Rep. Bob McDermott, who is competing against Schatz in the general election, has not reported raising any money for his campaign….

read … Hawaii Democrats Face Little GOP Opposition. But They’re Still Raising Money

Former city planning official pleads guilty in bribery scheme

HNN: … A former Honolulu building plans examiner pleaded guilty Monday to all charges in an indictment accusing him of participating in a scheme to take bribes in exchange for expediting projects.

Wayne Inouye pleaded guilty to six counts of honest services wire fraud and one count of making a false statement. He did not have an agreement with U.S. prosecutors about what sentence they will seek.

Prosecutors say Inouye took at least $89,000 in bribes from an architect and several thousand dollars from others to approve and expedite their projects ahead of others.

Inouye lied to an FBI agent and federal prosecutor when he told them an architect loaned him $100,000, Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Nolan said….

U.S. Magistrate Judge Rom Trader told Inouye that pleading guilty without a plea agreement means “you are taking your chances” with the possibility of getting a maximum sentence. A judge is scheduled to sentence Inouye in March….

CB: Honolulu’s Former Top Permit Inspector Pleads Guilty To Bribery

read … Former city planning official pleads guilty in bribery scheme

Judges OK holds on Hawaii pretrial detainees

SA: … Scott DeAngelo’s murder trial was set for Dec. 5, but his case was dismissed Oct. 10 in the wake of September’s high court ruling in State v. Obrero requiring a grand jury indictment for people accused of serious crimes.

DeAngelo was charged with second-degree murder in the death of a man whose burned body was found in February in a Pearl City apartment fire….

Prosecutors brought charges against DeAngelo in a preliminary hearing before a judge rather than through a grand jury, leading to the dismissal. But at prosecutors’ request, rather than releasing him, 1st Circuit Judge Kevin Souza ordered DeAngelo to be held without bail for up to 90 days until he can be recharged by indictment.

The DeAngelo case is one of several in the past two weeks in which judges have granted prosecutors’ request in cases dismissed under the Obrero ruling. Hawaii Rules for Penal Procedure Rule 12(g) allows defendants “to be held in custody or his or her bail be continued for a specified time pending the filing of a new charge.”…

Prosecutors in other counties are also using Rule 12(g) in Obrero cases.

The Hawaii County Office of the Prosecuting Attorney has had a few 12(g) motions, but it is unclear how judges there will rule since no decisions have been rendered yet, according to Hawaii County Prosecutor Kelden Waltjen….

“I really hope the Legislature convenes a special session to address this issue … to ensure public safety,” Waltjen said.

To deal with the overload of cases, the Judiciary began convening an additional Oahu grand jury session on Mondays. This is in addition to one held Wednesdays and two on Fridays.

Maui Prosecutor Andrew Martin said his office has used Rule 12(g) in five cases. Three were granted, but in all three an indictment was quickly forthcoming. In the two cases that were denied, the defendants were being held in unrelated cases….

SA: Hawaii’s high court is asked to strike down 90-day hold rule

SA Editorial: Legislature must fix crime statute by making it worse

read … Judges OK holds on Hawaii pretrial detainees

COVID-Unemployed Did Not Become Homeless because Homelessness is about Drugs, not Money

SA: … Fears of a large-scale surge in homelessness in Hawaii triggered by COVID-19 job losses failed to materialize thanks to state funding and the work of service providers, the state homeless coordinator said Monday.

(REALITY: Homelessness is about drugs, not money.  Because they are not drug addicts, the COVID unemployed were able to find ways to keep themselves off the streets.)

Scott Morishige, appearing on the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s “Spotlight Hawaii” livestream program, also said that Hawaii has seen a nearly 60% reduction in homeless families since 2015.

(KEY WORD: ‘Families.’)

There had been widespread concern that families who suffered COVID-19 job losses would lose their homes beginning with the pandemic in March 2020….

“We’re not seeing a lot of new homelessness come about because of the pandemic,” she said while appearing with Mo­rishige on “Spotlight Hawaii.”…

(REALITY: Homelessness is about drugs, not money.  Because they are not drug addicts, the COVID unemployed were able to find ways to keep themselves off the streets.)

The nearly 60% reduction in family homelessness since 2015 — despite the pandemic — is the result of what can happen when help is focused on specific populations, including homeless veterans, Wright said….

IHS sees a “steady of trickle of people coming in from the mainland probably every week.”…

Wright estimated that 10% to 20% of IHS’ clients are recent arrivals from the mainland, compared with the overwhelming number of local residents.

Like other programs in Hawaii, IHS works to reunite homeless people from the mainland with someone who will look out for them — and try to reduce the cost of their airfare to go back — “as long as we’re sending them to a safe place,” Wright said.

A woman was recently reunited with her daughter in Maryland that way, she said.

Concerns continue over homeless people with mental health and substance abuse issues who don’t want to seek offers of treatment or shelter….

SA Off the News: Keeping renters in their homes

KITV: Lt. Green releases 10-point-plan to fight homelessness in Hawaii

read … Planning averts spike in COVID-era homelessness in Hawaii

Hawaii County to Rewrite Zoning and Subdivision Codes to Reduce Affordability

HTH: … Hawaii County this week is kicking off a 19-month process to update zoning and subdivision codes with community engagement sessions in Kona and Hilo.

(TRANSLATION: Housing will become more expensive.)

The open houses are scheduled for 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Old Kona Airport pavilion and Thursday in the atrium of the county building in Hilo….

Consultants Rundell Ernstberger Associates, Orion Planning and Design and SSFM International have been retained to work on the project, but Kern said the Planning Department will be actively involved as well….

(CLUE: ‘Delphi Technique’)

The public can learn more at cohcodeupdate.com….

read … Changes loom for zoning and development laws

Navy water system sees fourth main break as boil water advisory remains up

HNN: … Capt. Mark Sohaney, commander of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, confirmed that a water main break Monday afternoon in Pearl City Peninsula was related to ongoing problems with the system.

At least three homes in the area experienced flooding and crews were on scene….

The Board of Water Supply said it would be providing a replacement length of pipe for the Navy as part of repairs to the largest water line break, a 36-inch main.

“As it pertains to supplying drinking water, the Navy is working to repair their back flow preventors. This must occur before the BWS can open any emergency connections,” the agency said, in a statement….

read … Navy water system sees fourth main break as boil water advisory remains up

Legislative Agenda: West Maui Hospital coming as Hawaii battles nursing shortage

KHON: … A hospital in West Maui has been in the works for years, but we’re three years past its targeted opening date, and construction of the facility has yet to begin.

The proposed West Maui Hospital is looking for $7 million in grant aid from the state to get construction completed in Kaanapali. The project is estimated to cost $38.5 million….

According to the state, there are about 1,000 open nursing positions in the islands with growth projected to need 110 more positions annually until 2030. The nursing shortage was glaring during the pandemic when the state financed expensive traveling nurses to fill shortages, especially in the ICU….

Last week Governor David Ige released $1.75 million to the University of Hawaii for its nursing program to hire 39 more professors.

Queen’s is planning a $1.4 billion expansion, part of which is doubling the size of the emergency room. Straub is working on tripling the size of its campus with a 16-story hospital tower….

MN: West Maui Hospital developer seeks $7M to help cover costs

read … West Maui Hospital coming as Hawaii battles nursing shortage

Amid liability concerns, state wants to stop licensing program for Waikiki Beach Boys

HNN: … Most also carry a Waikiki Operator Permit issued by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Those who have had the cards for decades, like Willy Grace of Star Beachboys, support the idea of the licensing….

The permit is called a blue card…

(CLUE: Mafia thing.)

Grace says the system developed out of the old Beach Boy tradition of handing down the skills from veterans to those who they saw as worthy of the work.

“You gotta know the water, you gotta know the people you have to have respect for the guys that started this ― that’s why you needed them to sign your card,” Grace said.

(See? Told you so.)

many are waiting in the line up, he said.

“All of their applications have been in with the state in some cases for years,” Carvalho said, adding his wife has been waiting for almost seven years. He said the DLNR just isn’t processing applications nearly fast enough….

The state has been discussing getting rid of the blue card program for years.

Officials said they don’t have the expertise or the resources needed to do the testing and enforcement that is necessary. The result is a program that everyone agrees doesn’t really doesn’t work anyway….

The state attorney general recommended dropping the program because the state could get sued over an instructor’s negligence. The Land Department staff is asking the Land Board to do away with the program while a new system for overseeing the ocean operators is developed….

Repeal of the regulations was scheduled for last week’s Land Board meeting, but the meeting was cancelled due to Sunshine Law concerns. The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 27….

read … Amid liability concerns, state wants to stop licensing program for Waikiki Beach Boys

Hawaii County Prosecutor Conflict of Interest -- Criminal investigation into fatal shooting at Boy Scouts camp hits roadblock

HNN: … The Hawaii County Prosecutor’s Office has declared a conflict of interest in the criminal investigation into the death of an 11-year old who was fatally shoot at a Boy Scouts camp near Honokaa in August.

The Prosecutor’s Office confirms they notified the state Attorney General’s office last week that staff and their family members were at the rifle range the day of the accidental shooting of Manuel Carvalho and are considered witnesses.

The state Attorney General’s office will now have to decide if they will keep the criminal investigation or send it to another county agency for review….

Carvalho was shot when another boy, who police said was unsupervised, picked up a loaded AK-47 semi automatic rifle at the range. When the boy set the gun back down, it went off and the bullet struck Carvalho in the head.

Police said they referred 23 firearms-related offenses against three men who were at the scene.

Among those offenses ― negligent storage of a firearm, a misdemeanor crime. All 23 offenses appear to be for alleged gun crimes at the range, mostly unrelated to the accidental shooting death….

read … Criminal investigation into fatal shooting at Boy Scouts camp hits roadblock

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