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Saturday, July 22, 2023
July 22, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:48 PM :: 2517 Views

Senators Visit OCCC, Halawa

Talk of the town: Rail Operating Cost $54 per passenger

Witness Intimidation News: Judge denies release on bond for Miske’s brother

ILind: … John Stancil, who is Mike Miske’s younger half-brother as well as a co-defendant in the pending federal criminal case, won’t be getting released from Honolulu’s federal detention center anytime soon. In a decision filed in court this week, Magistrate Judge Kenneth Mansfield denied several parts of a motion filed by Stancil’s attorney which had sought his release on bond.

Miske, Stancil, and five other remaining co-defendants face a total of 22 charges including conspiring to break federal racketeering laws, murder-for-hire, kidnapping, drug trafficking conspiracy, armed robbery, bank fraud, and obstruction of justice.

Six additional co-defendants have already pleaded guilty, and a seventh is now scheduled to change his “not guilty” plea next week.

Trial in the case is scheduled to get underway in January and last as long as five months.

It’s likely Stancil’s attorneys never expected to win his release, but were trying to create a record in court in case it becomes useful for a future appeal….

Miske’s attorneys quickly filed a separate motion “to modify conditions of detention to permit defendants to prepare for trial with reasonable schedule of joint meetings of defendants and their counsel.” A hearing on this new motion is scheduled for August 9….

(Translation: If we can’t get out, we must meet to conspire amongst ourselves.)

ILind: Change of plea hearing for 7th Miske co-defendant scheduled next week -- Kimoto becomes the 7th of Mike Miske’s ten original co-defendants to plead guilty and flip on his former associates.

ILind: A request for a further delay in the Miske trial has been filed (more time to get at witnesses)

read … Judge denies release on bond for Miske’s brother

50% of Educated People Leave Hawaii

HNN: … Chang said aside from Native Hawaiians leaving the islands, over half of all Hawaii-born bachelor’s degree holders now live outside of state….

“We are not even coming close to housing the natural rate of population increase, which is why, even if we were to build Trump’s wall around Hawaii and kick out every single wealthy overseas investor, every single Airbnb, every single, you know, homeless person on a one-way ticket, and all of these boogeymen that we have in Hawaii, we would not be building nearly enough housing just to house local people and local generations,” he said….

HHD: The Debrief 1+2: Affordable Housing Initiatives At The Hawaiʻi State Legislature

read … The Debrief: People are leaving Hawaii in droves. Can these solutions help more stay?

Skyline ridership declines in third week of business

SA: … The numbers of paying passengers dropped each day last week compared with the same day from the previous week to:

>> 2,974 on Thursday from 3,203 on the preceding Thursday.  (down 7%)

>> 2,615 on Wednesday from 3,276 on the preceding Wednesday.

>> 3,973 on Sunday from 4,312 on the preceding Sunday.

>> 3,694 on July 15 from 4,141 on the preceding Saturday.

On Tuesday, 2,937 passengers paid to ride rail. The week before, 18,108 rode for free.

On Monday, 2,875 people rode Skyline, compared with 12,946 the week before who rode for free.

The number of paid passengers — and how much revenue they generate for the city — will determine how big of a budget shortfall rail will face for current and future operational and maintenance costs, just like other rail systems around the country, according to the Federal Transit Administration ….

Big Q: Is it concerning that the rail board is criticizing subpar financial updates from its CEO?

read … Skyline ridership declines in third week of business

Football Player, Coaches Play Word Games with Rape

HNN: … HNN first reported on the criminal case in May, but de Laura hasn’t spoken publicly until Friday, when he addressed reporters at the PAC-12 media day.

He and a former high school teammate, Kamoi Latu, were prosecuted in juvenile court for sex assault and have since agreed to settle the civil case with their accuser.

“There’s nothing I would like to do but clear my name, if I could, defend myself from what’s been written. However, I hope you understand that I’m bound by the law to not discuss this matter at all,” de Laura’s prepared statement said.

De Laura then said he was grateful for his teammates at Arizona and the school for standing behind him.

Coach Jedd Fisch added, the school tried but was not able to get information about the case.

“We did as much due diligence as humanly possible,” Fisch said the school investigation showed that de Laura was never found guilty of any crimes.

A civil lawsuit that followed prosecution specifically said the players pleaded guilty in juvenile court for the 2018 assault.

Legal experts though have said the words guilty or, not guilty are not part of the juvenile system. Rather the court determines if the defendant is found responsible or not responsible for the allegations.

De laura did not say which one ended his criminal case.

Victor Bakke, an attorney who has defended cases in juvenile court said de Laura can, actually discuss the case and disputes de Laura’s statements that he is ‘bound by law’ not to do so.

“I cannot find any gag order or no-contact order where he’s not allowed,” Bakke said juvenile court is about privacy but said the accused is free to talk about it and defend himself….

read … At Pac-12 media day, Jayden de Laura says he wants to ‘clear his name’ amid sex assault allegations

Hysteria Debunked in Court as Maui Eco Nuts seek TRO to Save Mosquitoes from Eradication

SA: … Tina Lia told the court the environmental assessment is misleading, deceptive and leaves out key details. She described the project as experimental because it uses a type of mosquito never used before.

(IQ Test: Are you fooled by anything she says?)

“The information was misrepresented to the public,” she said, “and I will put it nicely as misrepresented to the public.”

(Translation: Quack, Quack, Quack.)

Lia, a bookkeeper and nonprofit volunteer from Kihei, (and therefore obviously very knowledgeable in entomology) said that while project officials say Wolbachia is already found in Hawaii, other documents described it as a different, or foreign, type of Wolbachia, sourced from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

(Translation: Quack, Quack, Quack.)

What’s more, the environmental assessment doesn’t even mention the rate of accidental female releases, which Lia discovered in her research as being 1 in 250,000 mosquitoes, according to an Environmental Protection Agency figure. That means more than 3,000 females could be released per week over the next 20 years, she said.  Lia said that is concerning to her because “females bite and breed and spread disease, and because it was misrepresented to the public that only males would be released.”

(Translation: Quack, Quack, Quack.)

She said her formal comments about the document were not seriously considered by project planners.

(Translation: Easily debunked.)

“I felt that the public (ie: Mallard) participation process was not being honored,” she said. “I felt very much like the decision to do this project had been pre-decided, and they were working the documents around a decision that had already had been made.”

(Translation: Quack, Quack, Quack.)

Entomologist Nicole Ferguson, a Maui Forest Bird Recovery Project field supervisor, testified for the state and disputed some of the claims made by previous witnesses.

(Translation: She debunks easily.)

Among other things, she said the targeted strain of Wolbachia has been in Hawaii for more than 100 years, and there is no known transmission of the bacteria to other species. She also said the rate of accidental female mosquito release is 1 in 50 million, and even if more infected females were accidentally released, the result would not be catastrophic. She said it would only mean the method would be less effective over time.

(Translation: Ducks aren’t very smart.)

During a break Friday, state Division of Forestry and Wildlife Administrator David Smith said he understands people have concerns, and the state wants to address them.

“But we literally have birds going extinct, and we don’t want to see any delay,” he said.

(Translation: Ducks have no solidarity with their fellow birds.)

Last week the department announced that the akikiki on Kauai is now down to an alarming five individuals. Smith said the other honeycreepers will soon be critically endangered.

The hearing will start up again Aug. 15....

VIDEO: State's First Witness Debunks Hysteria  

HNN: Effort to save native birds on Maui getting more public backlash

read … Court hearing to stop large-scale mosquito release project begins

After 23 Years, Final approval given for $328M Hawaiian homesteads settlement

SA: … Plaintiffs in a nearly 24-year-old class-action lawsuit against the state over Hawaiian homestead claims should begin to receive their share of a $328 million settlement in September, after a final approval in court Friday.

The case, involving claims owed to 2,515 Native Hawaiians over unfulfilled and sometimes neglected state obligations, represents the biggest known legal settlement in Hawaii history. 

A team led by Tom Grande and Carl Varady, two local attorneys representing plaintiffs, also was awarded a record fee in Hawaii litigation history — $40 million — for work that encountered daunting opposition, obstruction, two trials and two decisions appealed by the state to the Hawaii Supreme Court before a tentative settlement was agreed to in 2022….

After accounting for the $40 million in attorneys’ fees and about $2 million in claims administration costs, about $286 million will be available for distribution to class members. If this amount were divided evenly among them all, the average would be $113,718….

A special commission had been created in 1991 to administratively adjudicate claims filed by Aug. 31, 1995, for harm suffered by DHHL beneficiaries between statehood in 1959, when DHHL inherited the program from the federal government, and 1988.

Claim decisions by the commission were subject to approval by the Legislature, but the two entities failed to meet a 1999 approval deadline, and that allowed claimants to file the lawsuit, known as Kalima v. State of Hawaii….

Cataldo said before ruling. “The case, filed more than 23 years ago in 1999, has worn a legal path few if any cases in Hawaii have tread.”…

BIN: Circuit Court judge gives final approval to $328M settlement in lawsuit for delayed Native Hawaiian homestead awards

read … Final approval given for $328M Hawaiian homesteads settlement

Oahu’s Iwilei Resource Center days can be “pretty wild” as the staff of 20 is trying to handle 6 bums

SA: … The center opened in June after sitting vacant for a year — treating homeless people with medical conditions that are too serious for shelters to handle but not severe enough for hospitalization. However, its ultimate goal is to find permanent housing for clients who would otherwise go back to the streets.

“These are the hardest of the hard to take care of, treat and place, in my opinion,” Honolulu Emergency Medical Services Director Dr. Jim Ireland said. “These are the folks you’re seeing literally on the sidewalk with no blanket, no pillow, no shelter, flies all around them, open wounds — these are really challenging patients to take care of who desperately need help.”

CORE intentionally operates at around 25% capacity to not overwhelm the 20-person staff and other clients. They currently serve around six to seven patients, their full capacity being 20 to 22 hospital beds, Ireland said.

Clients are admitted to the center after undergoing an assessment of medical and social needs that the center can tend to. Then the homeless clients are guaranteed a 90-day stay at the facility while the CORE staff works with them to get state identification and permanent health care, find housing and recover from any of their hindering medical conditions.

Operations have gone relatively smoothly, though CORE supervisor Jenny Neal admitted that days can be “pretty wild” as the staff is trying to find daily routines to follow….

SA Editorial: Busy at the kauhale

read … Oahu’s Iwilei Resource Center off to slow but impactful start

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