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Tuesday, December 11, 2012
December 11, 2012 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 4:03 PM :: 4519 Views

Inouye Secretly Hospitalized Since December 6

HSTA Rejects Teacher Evaluations, Turns Down State's Offer

Rail: Final Federal Court Hearing This Wednesday

Hawaii Congressional Delegation: How They Voted December 10, 2012

Full Text: Green Party Sues Nago Over Botched Election

Economist: Visa Waivers Behind Hawaii Tourism Boom

Civil Rights Lawyer: Moanalua HS Concert Constitutional

Politico: Tulsi Gabbard ‘Being Groomed for Senate’

Politico: “In 2003, I felt the need to do more with my life and to do more in the way of service,” she said. “I remember sitting in my office watching the Saddam Hussein statue topple [in Baghdad]. That was shortly before I enlisted. I shipped off to basic training at the end of May 2003 to Fort Jackson, S.C.”

Eventually, she became a platoon leader and a company commander.

“I never looked for easy,” Gabbard said. “The question of easy or hard never entered my thought process.”….

“All of these experiences were challenging in a variety of ways and changed my life, changed my outlook, my perspective, changed me as a person, really developed me into a stronger leader,” she said. (During the campaign, this is where she would segue into a riff on gay marriage. But now she is elected…suckers!) “And what I have found to be really beneficial is that my service in the military has been a complement to my public service, and my public service has been a complement to my military service.”

A rising star in the Democratic Party, Gabbard was invited to speak at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. “It was a huge honor,” she said. “These opportunities are completely unexpected from my standpoint.”

There’s some scuttlebutt that she’s being groomed for the Senate, but like any good politician, Gabbard said her “sole focus right now is to provide the highest level of service to my constituents. Period.”

Related: To Stop Mufi, Mrs Abercrombie Joins the Chris Butler Cult

Read … Politico

Teachers are Dull, Sleepy--Its the Parents Fault

CB: Teachers’ dull slumps at meetings, glazed eyes — even falling asleep — are tell-tale signs that the kids in their classes are too tired and hungry to concentrate, hyper and over-stimulated by the lack of sleep and poor nutrition their growing selves crave. Their inappropriate behavior and words fill up all a teacher’s waking hours.

read ... What they think about your kids

Hawaii Has Bipartisanship, Not anti-union Fervor

Borreca: Here in Hawaii, some Republicans, such as former Lt. Gov. James “Duke” Aiona, have campaigned against Hawaii’s public unions with no success. But, unions have used GOP attacks on labor as a reason to deny the Republican Party any real representation.

For Hawaii Republicans, the issue may become more nuanced, as it is expected that the seven GOP state House members will form a coalition with Democratic Rep. Joe Souki to run the House.

Calls from conservative Hawaii Republican Party members to endorse the Michigan action will obviously not pass into law.

“It is wrong to conclude that this is the death knell of unions, and in Hawaii it is even more difficult,” said Musto.

In fact the biggest reaction probably would be that anti-union legislation in the House would easily be enough to upset whatever delicate balances are at work in the state House.

Related: Unions Losing in Their Last Stronghold

read … An article about nothing

OHA Grabs 500 Acres of Galbraith Estate

SA: The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, an independent state agency that owns 27,000 acres of mostly conservation land, received in the transaction another 500 acres near the Kuka­ni­loko Birthstones State Historic Site, one of Oahu's most significant cultural sites, where famous Hawaiian chiefs were born….

State lawmakers set aside $13 million in general obligation bonds to acquire the plots after a 2007 development deal fell through, and the Trust for Public Land raised the remaining $12 million.

read … Wahiawa

AARP: Go Over the Cliff, We’ll Be Fine

HTH: Changes to the cost-of-living increases in Social Security payments would result in loss of “roughly $480 million” to beneficiaries in Hawaii over the next 10 years, Stanton added.

The non-profit AARP lobbies on behalf of 37 million members age 50 and older. Hawaii County has about 26,000 members.

Ironically, if no deal is reached and the nation topples over the fiscal cliff, Social Security and Medicare recipients would maintain current benefits — at least for a while.

read … Interest Group

Hawaii Voter Turnout Drops 4.6%, Lowest in Nation

CNN: …both Hawaii and West Virginia registered turnout rates of 44.2%*, according to Michael McDonald, an associate professor at George Mason University who runs a site called the United States Election Project. Both states -- and many others -- saw a decline in turnout from the 2008 election. Nationwide, turnout dropped by about 3%, McDonald said by phone. (It's impossible to be more precise because several states still haven't submitted their certified turnout numbers; blame funding and mail-in ballots for that, he said.) Hawaii's turnout dropped 4.6%, by comparison….

read … Hawaii ties for last in voting

The Past-and-Future Speaker has few grassroots

ILind: Souki’s campaign raised a total of $49,725 during the 2012 election cycle.

Of that amount, 84 percent of the total, or $41,750, came in amounts of more than $100, the threshold for public disclosure of contributors.

And in a quick check of those contributors identified in Souki’s reports to the Campaign Spending Commission, I couldn’t find one contribution from a person qualified to vote for the candidate. Virtually all the large contributions came from corporations, PACs, lobbyists, and other interests based outside of his district.

read … The Past-and-Future Speaker has few grassroots

Cancer services need restoring

SA: Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children has restarted bone marrow collection in Hawaii, which brings an enormous sense of relief. Almost a year after the closure of the Hawaii Medical Centers, another milepost has been reached on the road back to restoration of a broad range of health-care services in the state.

It’s a milepost, but the journey isn’t over yet. Marrow transplants are being done at Kapiolani in pediatric cases, but not for adults….

Since HMC-East closed in January, donors traveled to the mainland at a cost of about $25,000. That sum is billed to the transplant patient, but donors don’t recoup lost wages expenses for child care and other donor needs.

Becoming a donor means making a time commitment. For example: Renee Tulonghari of Kaimuki flew to San Diego twice in February to donate bone marrow to a woman with aplastic anemia, a blood disorder. For some potential donors, the flights would represent an insurmountable burden.

However, the burden is even greater on the transplant patients themselves. The goal must remain restoration of bone-marrow transplants for adults as well.

read … Cancer

Fiscal Cliff: UH Submarines Grounded

SA: The University of Hawaii submersible program, already hit by federal budget cuts, is trying to line up research and commercial dives next year to keep the 32-year-old program afloat but has no contracts yet, officials said.

The Pisces IV and V are the only U.S. deep-diving science submersibles in the Pacific.

"We can certainly see that (financial brick) wall coming," said Sandy Shor, associate dean for research in the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology.

read … Just the Beginning

Native Hawaiian college enrollment increasing at University of Hawaii campuses

PBN: Five years ago, UH joined the Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count initiative, which seeks to help low-income college students earn degrees, certifications or transfer to four-year universities, as PBN reported in 2007.

Today, UH President M.R.C. Greenwood told me that UH has seen native enrollment increase by about 35 percent. “We are very proud of our accomplishments,” Greenwood said. “It goes to show that we are putting programs out there that are attracting students.”

Ten years ago, there were 6,555 students who said they were of Hawaiian or part-Hawaiian ethnicity. This year’s fall enrollment now has 14,078 students enrolled under that category, plus another 14,608 students who said they were of Hawaiian ancestry.

Greenwood attributed such progress to Lui Hokoana, associate vice president for student affairs. He has been instrumental in leading the Achieving the Dream initiative by increasing financial aid access.

read … Enrollment

Number of homeless remains unchanged in Hawaii

KHON: According to the report, 6,246 people were reported to be homeless in Hawaii in 2012. Of that total, 910 were chronically homeless and 507 were homeless veterans.

Nationally, homelessness dropped .4 percent in 2012, with a seven percent drop in homelessness among veterans and those experiencing long-term chronic homelessness.

According to the report, five states accounted for nearly half of the nation's homeless population in 2012: California (20.7 percent), New York 11.0 percent), Florida (8.7 percent), Texas (5.4 percent), and Georgia (3.2 percent).

read … Homeless

Berg: Nanakuli Community Robbed

News Release from Tom Berg: All the City Council had to do at its hearing on December 5, was defer Resolution 12-139 which would have allowed the Nanakuli community to gather and raise alternative sources of funds to develop the park in question. Many came forward to testify and even alerted the Council that they had found sources of money to do just that - advance the park concept. The City continued to take the position that it has no money to advance a new park on the Leeward Coast . . .yet, after a vote of 7-2 by the City Council to remove the PIM (Public Infrastructure Map) from the Waianae Sustainable Communities Plan, the same Council voted to advance a brand new concert hall to be built in Central Oahu.

Wait a minute here - you mean the same City that cannot even afford to adequately compensate the Honolulu Symphony to play at the Blaisdell Concert Hall, a facility that loses money . . . and the City wants to clone/duplicate another concert hall scenario with taxpayer funds for Central Oahu? Build a new concert hall in Central Oahu? There is NO MONEY the City said for developing a park for a community that is deficient in park acreage but there is money for another concert hall to serve Central Oahu?

Related: Ernie Martin: Cancel Nanakuli Park to Make Way for PVT Landfill

LTE: Nanakuli: The truth about the pim

VIDEO … over 2 hours of deliberations condensed into a ten-minute youtube

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