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Friday, May 24, 2024
May 24, 2024 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 3:56 PM :: 2240 Views

DHHL: After Hawaiian Tel Auction Buy, Criminal Al Hee's Sandwich Isles Scam Causing 'phone and internet disruptions'

Podcast: The Second Amendment Implications of Hawaii Legalizing Butterfly Knives

Miske “Sources inside local law enforcement, ATF, and FBI”

ILind: … On Monday afternoon, Watson criticized prosecutors for failing to provide supplemental exhibit lists on a timely basis, giving defense attorneys inadequate time to review and prepare. As a result, Watson ruled that the latest round of proposed exhibits could not be used when questioning any upcoming witnesses.

On Sunday, May 19, government attorneys had filed their 29th Supplemental Exhibit List, which contained several eye-catching items, including the application for a search warrant targeting the home of Jordan Kipi, then a surveillance specialist employed by the FBI.

Two search warrants targeting Kipi’s phone and home were inadvertently disclosed earlier, but this is the first public reference to them….

On Wednesday, Angela Varnadore, a former employee who was once one of Miske’s girlfriends, was asked whether Miske had sources of information inside government agencies.

P: “Did Mr. Miske ever bring up his federal investigation to you?

W: “Yes.

P: “Did he ever bring up any law enforcement personnel that he knew?

W: “Yes, he said he knew people in local law enforcement, ATF, and FBI and that he would get information about the federal investigation from them.

This seems like it would have been a point to introduce one or more of the proposed exhibits related to Kipi, but the government appears to have been prevented from doing so by Watson’s earlier order concerning the supplemental exhibits….

(TRANSLATION: Watson is preventing the jury from learning about Miske’s sources inside law enforcement.)

Watson called it “a colossal waste” of time for him and others. His parting shot was that if prosecutors didn’t streamline their approach, he would do it, potentially a warning that he would cut off excessive questioning. Watson then abruptly stormed out of the courtroom….

read … Prosecutors hit some rough going this week

Public corruption trial centered on Kealoha payout delayed

HNN: … Trial for three former Honolulu administrators accused of conspiracy has been delayed from October to next March.

Donna Leong, Honolulu’s former corporation counsel, ex-Managing Director Roy Amemiya and Max Sword, once the Honolulu Police Commission chair, are all facing criminal charges of conspiracy to defraud the US in connection with a $250,000 payout.

Leong has an additional charge of lying to federal agents.

This will be the third trial in Hawaii for the special prosecution team from San Diego, led by Michael Wheat….

The next trial is expected to include testimony from former council members who publicly said they wanted input on the payoff and were upset that they were left out of the process.

The trial for Leong, Amemiya and Sword was delayed in part because one of the attorneys is in the middle of another high-profile trial….

read … Public corruption trial centered on Kealoha payout delayed

Maui County's Move Against Vacation Rentals Likely To Bog Down In Court

CB: … There are also significant challenges converting vacation units into long-term rentals, including high rents, HOA fees and accessibility issues….

“If the bill as it exists now is ultimately passed by the County Council, and approved by the mayor and takes effect, I think the chances of litigation over it against the county of Maui are 100% guaranteed,” Greg Kugle said.

Kugle previously represented Oahu owners who successfully fought the City and County of Honolulu’s efforts to impose a 90-day minimum for short-term leases….

Economou’s big concern is that the county is “going to rush this, they’re not going to do it properly and it will lead to other lawsuits and various other economic consequences down the line.”

Legal arguments against Maui County would likely rely heavily on the prohibitions on the taking of private property in the state and federal constitutions, and the protections against laws that eliminate an existing lawful use, in this case short-term rentals.

Kugle intimated as much, saying, “There’s been no changes to the Hawaii Constitution or the U.S. Constitution and those still exist to prevent Maui from taking away rights from property owners that have existed for decades.” ….

SA Editorial: How counties can best apply new law

read … Maui County's Move Against Vacation Rentals Likely To Bog Down In Court

OHA News: Profitable Nonprofits ‘clamoring for money’ -- HCA Gets $3.1M, where’s ours???

CB: … clamoring for money … Of the organizations set to receive funding, only one did not get its requested amount. Some were even set to get more money than requested. Yet dozens of organizations would have received nothing….

the money was going to organizations that win grants year after year…

The trustees were particularly concerned with one organization set to get more than $3 million from two different grants.

“I think that’s unfair,” Lindsey said. “If they get one, somebody else should get the other.”

The nonprofit was not named during the meeting, but records indicate the group was Hawaiian Community Assets, which provides counseling and financial support for potential homebuyers….

OHA planned to award HCA $1.5 million from the Lako Ko Kauhale-Ohana Resource Management and Housing grant and $1.6 million from the Pohala Mai-Ohana Experiencing Financial Hardship grant. 

Kawaihae said that HCA was the only applicant for one grant. For the other, it scored the highest out of two applicants.

HCA last received a $1.5 million grant from OHA in September, Maui Now reported.

The grant funds can’t be disbursed without approval of the Board of Trustees, and it has until June 30 to do so….

RELATED: The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is a slush fund—Where is the money going?

BREG: HAWAIIAN COMMUNITY ASSETS, INC.

read … Millions In Grants To Nonprofits Put On Hold After OHA Board Raises Concerns About Fairness

SB2475 on Governor’s Desk: Creates Database of School Child Molesters

KHON: … Recent investigations and reports have brought to light disturbing incidents of sexual abuse, physical assault, and harassment against students in both public and private preschools and K-12 campuses across Hawaii.

These incidents have exposed a troubling loophole that allows predators within school personnel to evade detection by simply switching schools and targeting new victims, taking advantage of the lack of information sharing between educational institutions.

To address this urgent issue and safeguard students from harm, the Hawaii Legislature unanimously passed Senate Bill 2475 CD1.

This bill aims to close the loophole and prevent individuals found to have harmed students from working in any capacity that involves interacting with or being in close proximity to students.

SB2475 CD1 establishes the Harm to Students registry for all preschools and K-12 educational institutions statewide.

This registry will contain information on school employees, contractors, or volunteers who have been found, as a result of an investigation, to have inflicted harm on a student….

SB2475: Text, Status

read … Hawaii cracks down on predators with new bill | KHON2

Contract? What Contract? Teachers Union Demands Another $3,000 Cash Money

KHON: … Each year, “hard to staff” schools receive shortage differentials to attract teachers. Lahaina area teachers were receiving a $5,000 differential per year before the wildfires. The union said the DOE denied its request for an increase to $8,000 post-fire….

read … Lahaina teachers rally for more support and funding (khon2.com)

Governor Green Wants to Import Liquefied Natural Gas

IM: … For the past several years there has been a rumor that someone or some entity is pushing Hawaii to import liquefied natural gas (LNG). Now we know that the push is from the Governor.

The Hawaii Energy Conference is holding its two-day conference on Maui. Yesterday Governor Green addressed the conference and repeatedly asserted that LNG is part of the future. He also delved in the military, tourism, securitization, and marijuana.

The Governor asserted, Once we come off of pure fossil fuels, that is a victory for all of us, at that moment all of the communities have basically won. So now in that safe space, which community is going to embrace solar, which is going to embrace LNG, which is going to embrace geothermal.

Governor Green asserted that LNG is a “bridge” fuel that will provide a “different bridge” to reach the future. 

Governor Green asked the State Energy Office to do a full analysis of each of the energy sources to decrease carbon and decrease cost. The State Energy Office LNG study will be completed in about a month.

HECO, Hawaii Gas, and KIUC expressed surprise regarding the Governor`s strong LNG message. They are not planning on using LNG. The entities pushing for LNG are the Kalaeloa Generation facility in Campbell Industrial Park, and the State Energy Office .…

CB: Green: Hawaii Should Consider Liquefied Natural Gas As A 'Bridge' To 100% Renewable Energy

read … Governor Green Wants to Import Liquefied Natural Gas

Lahaina Fire News:

Legislative Agenda:

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