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Tuesday, July 25, 2023
July 25, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:14 PM :: 3065 Views

Hawaii lawmakers ask for $4 million bill to study Red Hill effects

Case Introduces Measure To Ban Discriminatory Treatment And Pricing Of Shipping Of Goods To U.S. Locations Outside Of Continent

How a new law will help ease Hawaii's doctor shortage

Josh Green Owned and Operated by Carpenters Union

IM: … Governor Green has close and deep ties to the construction industry.

"Lt. Gov. Josh Green is running for governor and is expected to be supported by the Carpenters Union and its affiliate, the Pacific Resource Partnership,” reported Richard Borreca in the Star-Advertiser on June 19, 2022.

“In 2018 their super PAC donated heavily to Green’s lieutenant governor campaign, giving nearly an estimated half-million dollars through political action committees.”

Green also hired Brooke Wilson, the former political and education director for the Hawaii Regional Council of Carpenters, as his chief of staff."  Brooke Wilson has served as Chief of Staff for Lt. Gov. and Gov. Green since 2018….

RELATED: Housing Emergency Designed to Fail

read … Governor`s Housing Proclamation -- Bulldozing Sunshine, Public Input, Accountability & Sustainability to Reward Developers

Miske Tied to Kewalo Basin Kidnapping

IM: … The kidnapping was requested by a friend or acquaintance of Kimoto who was trying to collect a $900,000 debt owed to her father by a former business partner.

You may recall that Kimoto, who had been free on $50,000 bond since soon after his indictment and arrest in July 2020, was rearrested in April for threatening a witness to the kidnapping he was charged with….

Kimoto’s testimony places Miske in the middle of the kidnapping plot. Elements of his story are apparently supported by text messages, surveillance video, and other evidence, as well as corroborating testimony by at least one or two other conspirators. The importance of this testimony in strengthening the case against Miske likely explains the “good deal” part of the plea agreement.

And, third, Kimoto added a new bit of information. His plea agreement says Miske asked for and received a 10% “fee” for arranging the kidnapping and attempted extortion, even though it was not successful in the original goal of collecting the debt. The 10% fee of approximately $90,000 was paid in installments over a period of about six months….

SA: Miske associate pleads guilty, cooperates with government

CB: Latest Plea Deal In Miske Case Reveals New Details About 2017 Kidnapping

read … The Miske count: Seven down

Green’s New BOE Chair Haruki Mouths Usual Empty Platitudes

SA: … not one word about the 10,000s of students left behind during COVID shutdowns because the only DoE plan is to let them age out of the system and then claim huge progress because test scores go back up when the COVID-impacted students are gone ….

read … New BOE Chair Haruki urges priority on keeping more graduates home

Honolulu Star-Advertiser Is Cutting More News Staff

CB: … At least four editorial staff members have accepted a buyout….The Honolulu-based publishing company flagged 31 employees across all departments for removal in June 2020. 10 editorial employees left in 2017 and in 2016, the company trimmed the newsroom by more than 10%….

read … Honolulu Star-Advertiser Is Cutting More News Staff

Hawaii Senate Leaders Shower Themselves with Pork

CB: … An analysis of the Hawaii Legislature's capital improvement projects shows that the districts of top leaders and neighbor island lawmakers got lots of money. …

According to a Civil Beat analysis of the CIP listed in House Bill 300, the state budget bill that became law the day before the new fiscal year began July 1, the Senate distribution of the monies is highly uneven.

Much of it goes to districts represented by members of Senate leadership including Kouchi, Lorraine Inouye (majority whip) and Lynn DeCoite (assistant majority floor leader) who, like Kouchi, also represent neighbor island districts. These and several other neighbor island districts dominate the top 10 recipients in terms of CIP.

(While the districts for Oahu Sens. Karl Rhoads and Glenn Wakai are identified as receiving the most CIP, nearly all of it was made at the request of state agencies.)

Capital improvement projects for the next two years also are set to flow steadily to the district of Donovan Dela Cruz, arguably the most powerful senator by virtue of being chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. The same goes for Gil Keith-Agaran, another Senate leader who as WAM vice chair is responsible for coordinating CIP distribution. Dela Cruz represents parts of Oahu while Keith-Agaran (who’s also an assistant majority whip) is from Maui.

At the bottom of the pork pile, meanwhile, are the two Oahu Republicans in the Democrat-dominated chamber along with a half-dozen Oahu Democrats whose CIP is in the low five figures compared to considerably higher amounts for many of their colleagues….

read … Hawaii Senate President Showers Kauai With Pork Projects In New State Budget

Mufi Hannemann is front-runner for HTA board seat

SA: … The composition of the beleaguered Hawaii Tourism Authority board is set to change again, and former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann is considered the front-runner to secure Gov. Josh Green’s latest appointment.

HTA board member Ben Rafter paved the way for the change when he tendered his resignation from the board Friday, saying that Thursday’s meeting would be his last. Rafter’s decision leaves Green a spot to fill on the 12-member board, which is made up of unpaid volunteers who set HTA policy and oversee how the agency spends its budget, which so far this year is $71 million, including a provision for the Hawai‘i Convention Center….

NR: HTA Welcomes Two New Members to its Board of Directors

read … Hannemann is front-runner for HTA board seat

Hotel data reflect slower summer start than last year

MN: … Maui County hotels continued to reflect a slower start to the summer travel season as revenue and occupancy rates in June fell behind last year’s numbers, just as they did in May, according to a recent report by the Hawai’i Tourism Authority.

Last month, Maui County hotels saw a 67.2 percent occupancy rate, which is down 3.6 percentage points compared to June 2022 when occupancy was at 70.8 percent.

Revenue per available room in June was $418.74, which was down 8.7 percent versus 2022, when room revenue was at $458.60.

Even the average daily rate of $623 at Maui County hotels in June lagged behind 2022 numbers by 3.8 percent compared to the $647.63 average daily rate at the same time last year.

Statewide, however, hotels were roughly on par with last summer. Occupancy was slightly up at 76.7 percent in June, an increase of 0.9 percentage points versus June 2022 when Hawaii saw a 75.8 percent occupancy rate.

read … Hotel data reflect slower summer start than last year

Homeless Dude Allegedly Beats Man to Pulp, Throws Him in Fire

KITV: … According to police reports, Tahutini is accused of attacking a 41-year-old man in the area of "Loneliness Tree," around Bayfront Highway in Hilo. Tahutini was seen by officers leaving the area around 10:12 p.m. Friday with injuries to his hands, and blood on his clothing. He declined medical attention.

Officers then discovered the victim, unconscious, lying in sand next to a firepit and portable metal grill, with his right arm pinned under a large boulder of the firepit. Officers extracted the man and used fire extinguishers in an effort to subdue the fire…

Meanwhile: Tased Hawaii Island robbery suspect out of jail despite a slew of new charges

Meanwhile: Lawmakers looking for options to fix homelessness still claim issue is money, not drugs

read … More Homeless mayhem

After 15 Years, DOBOR Finally Does Something with Ala Wai Lot

KITV: … "We're the first occupants in 15 years. Its been under-utilized, maybe the greatest under-utilized lots in Waikiki," said Mark Evenson, the owner of Pau Hana Place.

The harbor's old dry dock area now looks completely different, after the state decided to put the vacant land to use.

"We had a vendor come in and want to put a large tent, and entertainment food trucks there. We thought it would be a good use of that land there," said State Boating Administrator Ed Underwood….

Meanwhile: Ocean Stewardship Fee considered

read … Temporary changes coming to the Ala Wai Boat Harbor

Worker shortage leads to suspension of Kapaa school bus services

KHON: … The Hawaii Department of Education has sent out letters to Kapaa Elementary and High School parents notifying them that school bus service will be suspended until further notice. KHON2 is told that Kapaa Middle School parents received recorded phone calls notifying them about the cancelation.

The letter states, the issue is due to an ongoing bus driver shortage….

KITV: With just two weeks before the start of the new school year, parents are scrambling to find childcare

Meanwhile: Hawaii Island preschool that closed amid costly dispute with state finds a new home

read … Worker shortage leads to suspension of Kapaa school bus services

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