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Wednesday, November 15, 2023
November 15, 2023 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:29 PM :: 1134 Views

Pentagon Plans Transfer of Red Hill Back to Navy

Schatz: $20 Million For ‘Native Hawaiian Climate Resilience

Predatory Landlord Practices at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam

Democrats Taking Applications for House Dist 10 Vacancy

Fronting for the Contractors: CNHA Hosting Debris Removal Meeting

Lack of Leadership: Maui’s 911 Dispatchers Improvised During Lahaina Fire

CB: … the calls … lay bare painful moments in which dispatchers, despite their best intentions, found themselves unable to help those who dialed 911. In call after call, frantic people reached out with more questions than dispatchers had answers for. 

“There’s fires all around us,” one caller said around 4:40 p.m. “Do we stay in this parking garage?” 

“No, don’t stay in a parking garage,” the dispatcher said, without offering alternatives. “We’re just asking everybody to be patient. We’re trying our best. I don’t know what to tell you. You’re stuck there. We’re trying to fight a fire here, OK?”

Moments later, another call came in from Aki Street. 

“The fire is all over already,” the distressed woman said, as a scream could be heard in the background. “We just can’t get out. There’s no way out.” 

“All I can tell you is to get out of that area,” the dispatcher said. “They’re working on it.” 

Until a few years ago, there were no industry standards written for dispatchers to assist callers who were trapped by wildfires. Such instructions were written, though, after the deadly Tubbs fire in California in 2017 and are now used across the country and the world. 

But Maui doesn’t have that protocol. None of Hawaii’s county dispatchers do. …

read … Maui’s Shorthanded And Underpaid 911 Dispatchers Improvised During Lahaina Fire

In face of officer accounts, MPD chief again denies he knew about Lahaina deaths until following day

HNN: … Maui Police Chief John Pelletier is doubling down on the claim he was unaware anyone died in the Lahaina disaster until the day after the town burned.

That’s despite time-stamped body camera video that shows Maui police officers telling the public about fatalities just a couple hours into the afternoon fire fight.

It’s a topic Pelletier declined to talk about on camera due to scheduling conflicts.

In an email, a MPD spokesperson said the officers were only talking about “possible fatalities.”

Meanwhile, an emergency management expert says whether deaths had been confirmed or not, in a fire of this scale the department’s emergency response plan should have been the same….

read … In face of officer accounts, MPD chief again denies he knew about Lahaina deaths until following day

Land Grab: CNHA Launches Scheme to Buy up Distressed Lahaina properties

CB: … Carolyn Auweloa, a Lahaina native who now lives on the Big Island, is undertaking the necessary groundwork to establish the Lahaina Land Trust, a 501(c)3 nonprofit trust to be governed and guided by kamaaina, families with generational ties to the region and other community members.

Auweloa, a panelist during a breakout session on Tuesday’s opening day of the 22nd Annual Native Hawaiian Convention at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului, hosted by the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement, has filed the required paperwork with the state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs ….

MN: Local land trust hopes to ‘hold on to’ Lahaina lands

(CLUE: BREG lists nothing called “Lahaina Land Trust”)

read … Nascent Lahaina Land Trust Starts Building A Base Of Support

Executive overseeing $150M Maui Strong fund defends phased approach to disbursing aid

HNN: … Kane said Maui Strong is not giving large amounts to all survivors but is focused on needs underserved by government — like undocumented immigrant families and private child-care operators — and partnering with other non-profits to expand their missions.

“We’re just trying to be as agile as possible — things that normally would take weeks can take hours for us,” Kane said.

Kane explained the Maui Strong spending plan allows 20-25% to be spent in the first few months for emergency needs and holds back 70-85% for the recovering and stabilization period over the next couple of years, and after that only 3-5% for ongoing grants….

read … Executive overseeing $150M Maui Strong fund defends phased approach to disbursing aid

Former worker had raised safety concerns at State Hospital for years

KHON: … Kalford Keanu was a psychiatric technician at the State Hospital for 17 years. During that time he said he endured what many of his co-workers experienced.

“Assaulted two, three times a week at least. I was at the Intake Unit, they’re not stable on medication, so it’s part of the job,” he said.

While there have been efforts to make the place safer by building a new hospital, Keanu said there were other parts of the facility that were ignored such as the Transitional Housing Center.

“We got the same type of clients and it’s dangerous. So I don’t know what it will take to make it better, but I do know it starts at the top,” said Keanu….

read … Former worker had raised safety concerns at State Hospital for years

Many Lunatics Escape from Hawaii State Hospital

HNN: … an escapee of the hospital back in March – 28-year-old Andrew Schmitke – is just another incident that gave the institution an unwanted spotlight.

The escape occurred after the State completed work on a new $160,000,000 state-of-the-art psychiatric ward.

Then there was Randall Saito, who made headlines in November 2017 after having walked right out of the hospital and onto a charter flight to Maui before finally boarding a plane to the mainland, by just using a fake ID.

Saito was eventually arrested in California and is serving a 5 year prison sentence for the incident, but these two escapees aren’t alone on the list.

David True Seal is yet another walk away from the facility, having made his escape back in 2009.

He was not found until he killed someone on the Big Island four years later.

Seal is currently serving a 20 year prison term….

read … What else has happened at Hawaii State Hospital?

Fox, Henhouse: HPD Unsurprisingly ‘clears’ SHOPO board of wrongdoing

SA: … Six current and one former board member of the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers were cleared of any wrongdoing by the Honolulu Police Department after allegations of misdemeanor extortion were levied by an ousted union leader.

Before they were cleared, SHOPO President Robert Cavaco and Vice President Stephen Keogh filed grievances against the department alleging that the “excessively long” 15-month investigation denied them their due process rights under the current collective bargaining contract….

SHOPO is focused on “moving forward” and remains committed to working with HPD and the city’s leadership on addressing the police staffing crisis, improving public safety and providing residents, businesses and tourists with the “high-quality police serv­ices they expect and deserve.”

During HPD’s administrative investigation all seven of the officers faced an internal charge of “Commission of a Criminal Act.” That could result in termination even if prosecutors decline to press criminal charges.

Fifty-one percent of HPD’s Administrative Review Board can decide the officers did it and terminate them for violating HPD policy.

Hallums’ civil suit is on­going.

Hallums attorney, Bosko Petricevic, in a statement to the Star-­Advertiser, called SHOPO’s denials of his client’s allegations “empty and meaningless.” Petricevic claimed HPD didn’t clear anyone in the case.

“They said they could not substantiate. Ask HPD about different standards of ‘clearing’ someone. Be precise,” wrote Petricevic. He said documents filed in the civil case prove that Hallums’ resignation letter was drafted for him, that board members met secretly to plan his ouster, and union members admitted as much.

“I got mountains of evidence like this,” wrote Petricevic….

read … Members of Hawaii police union’s board cleared of wrongdoing

Waianae Wildfire Sparked After Hawaiian Electric Line Falls In Heavy Winds

CB: … The utility says its new safety plan helped crews respond faster to the fire, but the incident raises more concerns about the lack of a power safety shutoff program….

IM: Hawai`i Public Utilities Commission Should Investigate Public Safety Power Shutoffs

read … Waianae Wildfire Sparked After Hawaiian Electric Line Falls In Heavy Winds

After nearly 2 decades, state fixes numerous leaking pipes at Dillingham Airfield

HNN: … After nearly two decades of wasted water, the state has finally fixed numerous leaks at Dillingham Airfield, Hawaii News Now has confirmed.

Lawmakers say the long delay was due to red tape between the Army and Department of Transportation.

This week, Hawaii DOT Director Ed Sniffen told lawmakers that crews made two major repairs to a broken valve and a leaking waterline.

Crews also capped a busted pipe they found off the Mokuleia property that was not servicing any users.

Sniffen said they also noticed corrosion on the pipes where future breaks are likely to occur, so staff members are continuing to monitor water usage for leaks.

Also good news: Since finishing the repairs at the end of October, the airfield has gone from using about 100,000 gallons a day to 57,000 gallons.

That means they’re saving about 1.3 million gallons of water per month….

read … After nearly 2 decades, state fixes numerous leaking pipes at Dillingham Airfield (hawaiinewsnow.com)

Lahaina Fire News:

Legislative Agenda:

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