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Friday, February 2, 2018
Chin to Take Lt Gov Sinecure While Running for Congress
By Selected News Articles @ 10:45 AM :: 11186 Views :: Hawaii State Government, Politicians

Chin to Take Lt Gov Sinecure While Running for Congress 

HNN Feb 2, 2018: Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin will take over as lieutenant governor after Shan Tsutsui abruptly resigned from the post on Wednesday.

Chin made the official announcement Friday morning on Hawaii News Now Sunrise, saying, “I’ve always considered public service to be a privilege, and this is a call to serve, and it’s the right thing to do.”

Meanwhile, Chin said will continue to campaign for Congress. He’s vying to replace U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who’s stepping down to run for governor.

Chin had already planned to step down from the Attorney General’s office in March to for Congress….

Now that Chin will become lieutenant governor, First Deputy Attorney General Russell Suzuki has been appointed to serve as acting attorney general. …

PDF: News Release from AGs Office

read … Lt Governor

Tsutsui Lobbying Firm ‘Not in Good Standing’

IM Feb 2, 2018: …Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui resigned to join the communications and government relations firm of Strategies 360, a foreign for profit firm not in good standing with the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Business Registration Division. …

read … Chilling Aloha

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Tsutsui resigning as lieutenant governor to join private sector

SA Jan 29, 2018: …Tsutsui said he is returning to Maui and opted to resign now because a private sector job opened up with the Hawaii branch of the communications and government relations firm of Strategies 360….

(Translation: Offered a cush lobbyist gig, I dumped this LG thingy with two days notice.)

The lieutenant governor’s post will now pass to state Senate President Ron Kouchi. If Kouchi declines, it would be offered to House Speaker Scott Saiki. If Saiki declines the job, it would then be offered to state Attorney General Doug Chin, who is running for U.S. Congress.

If all of those political figures were to decline the job, it would be offered to the state director of finance, and then to other cabinet members….

read … Who wants to be LG? 

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News Release from Office of the Governor, Jan 29, 2018

It is with a mixture of sadness and gratitude that I learned of Shan’s decision to step down from his position as lieutenant governor. He has dedicated the last 15 years to serving the people of Hawai‘i. As lieutenant governor he has worked tirelessly on Aloha Stadium and the Farm to School Initiative in our effort to boost local food production in our state. I also applaud Shan’s effort to support after-school programs in our public schools. I wish Shan and his family the very best always.

KOUCHI Says ‘NO’ to LG Position

“While it was known that Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui would not be seeking re-election to his current office, being informed that the effective date of his resignation is in two days leaves me with mixed emotions. While I am personally happy that Shan is able to spend more time with his family, who has sacrificed in order for Shan to serve Maui, the State Senate, and the State of Hawai‘i, I am professionally saddened because Shan’s resignation leaves a gaping hole in our current political fabric.

"With regard to the soon to be vacant Office of the Lieutenant Governor, I am not interested in becoming the next Lieutenant Governor of the State of Hawai‘i.” – Senate President Ron Kouchi Monday Jan 29, 2018  

KGI Jan 31, 2018 Kouchi Explains Political Calculations:

“My term expires in 2020, so had I accepted the position of lieutenant governor, then I had at least three options I could see,” Kouchi said.

“One is that I would have to run in 2018 in a special election for Senate District 8 to regain my Senate seat when my time as lieutenant governor ended.

“The second would be that I would run for lieutenant governor.

“And the third would be that I would serve the term as lieutenant governor and then simply retire from elected politics.”

“We have three of my Senate colleagues here that have already been carrying on vigorous campaigns for the office of lieutenant governor,” he said.

Next in Line – House Speaker Scott Saiki says 'NO'

SA: Jan 30, 2018: "State House leader has ‘no desire to be next lieutenant governor’"

If not Saiki, who?

With Saiki rejecting the LG position, it is next offered to Attorney General Doug Chin, who is resigning March 15 to run for Congress and has already indicated he would not be interested in becoming LG.

UPDATE HNN Jan 30, 2018: "I will talk it over with my family and announce my decision on Friday," Chin said, in a brief statement Tuesday.

After Chin, the position would normally be offered to:

Acting State Director of Finance Laurel Johnston, State Comptroller Rod Becker, Interim State Director of Taxation Linda Chu Takayama, and Interim State Director of Human Resources Development Ryker Wada.

But -- of those, only Rod Becker is immnediately eligible barring sudden action by the State Senate.  HRS 26-2-g reads: "No officer other than a legislative officer shall act as governor or lieutenant governor under this section unless the officer has been appointed and confirmed prior to the time the powers and duties of the office of governor or of lieutenant governor devolve upon the officer."

Chin's delay gives the Senate until Friday to act on Ige’s interim cabinet nominees, thus making them eligible to become LG if State Comptroller Rod Becker doesn't want it.


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Lt Gov Shan Tsutsui statement Jan 29, 2018:

“With a grateful, yet heavy heart I am announcing today that I will be resigning as the Lieutenant Governor of the State of Hawaiʻi, effective January 31, 2018. Over the past 15 years, it has been my honor and privilege to have served the people of Hawaiʻi, first as a State Senator from Maui and Senate President, and currently as your Lieutenant Governor. Throughout that time, I have always been mindful of the tremendous responsibility that comes with public office. I have greatly appreciated the trust and confidence that was bestowed upon me and have done my best to build a better Hawaiʻi through collaboration and hard work, while honoring our shared core values of honesty, integrity and respect.

As Senate President, I was fortunate to draw upon my many years in the Senate and the relationships that I had established to exhibit a collaborative style of leadership, and I did my best to ensure that all Senators were respected and heard. As your Lieutenant Governor, I have continued to work cooperatively with leaders in the public and private sectors, as well as members of the public, with that same level of respect and attention. During this time, I am proud to have established the Resources for Enrichment, Athletics, Culture and Health (R.E.A.C.H.) initiative to support after-school programs for middle and intermediate public school students. As a father, I was especially concerned with ensuring that middle school students engage in positive activities and relationships during hours when many are left unsupervised because their parents are working. Since 2013, R.E.A.C.H. has invested approximately $2.75M in more than 40 public middle and intermediate schools, including charter schools, statewide, reaching thousands of students. Funds have helped to provide robotics programs; hula, ukulele, music and other dance lessons; basketball, soccer, wrestling and other sports; cooking, fishing, art, and hydroponics; and many other clubs and programs. Participating students have shown improved attendance, attitude, behavior and even grades.

Additionally, I was excited to have taken the reigns of the Farm to School Initiative, which we have developed into the “‘Aina Pono: Hawai‘i’s Farm to Cafeteria Initiative,” to increase the purchase and consumption of local food in our school cafeterias. With an enthusiastic team of advisors and ‘doers,’ along with support from the Department of Education, Department of Agriculture, private partners such as The Kohala Center, and many other generous donors, a burgeoning pilot project was launched to infuse local foods and flavors into our school menus, while providing healthier options for our keiki. As the project continues to grow and expand throughout the State, the effects will have a lasting impact on our keiki, the agriculture industry, and the state’s procurement processes.

Throughout my time in office, it has been an absolute pleasure to have had the opportunity to meet so many talented and inspiring individuals. I have witnessed firsthand the many hardworking families who fight traffic in their daily commutes, while holding down multiple jobs to provide a better life for their keiki; the bright, dedicated students who not only excel in Hawaiʻi but can also compete with their counterparts nationally; and the small businesses and farms using innovative and entrepreneurial ideas to revitalize family businesses. You have all inspired me and helped to make me a better person and leader. I will cherish these experiences and lessons and carry them with me throughout my life.

I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the people of Hawaiʻi for the opportunity to have served you all these years. Truly, I have been blessed with the support of so many individuals, family and friends. I especially thank my incredible family—my wife, children, parents and extended ohana for their tremendous love, support and many sacrifices over the years. I would like to thank Governor Ige for the privilege of serving in his Administration. To Neil and Nancy, Lyndelle and I thank you for your friendship and kindness and the love you have shared with our daughters. I also send my aloha to my former colleagues in the Legislature and the tens of thousands of public employees throughout the State for their hard work and dedication to the people of Hawaiʻi. Finally, a big mahalo to my staff and security for your unwavering devotion and enduring commitment to the office and to helping me best serve the people of the State. Your hard work did not go unnoticed, and I will be forever grateful to each of you.

In his remarks commemorating the 75th Pearl Harbor anniversary, President Barack Obama noted, ‘we cannot choose the history that we inherit. But we can choose what lessons to draw from it, and use those lessons to chart our own futures.’ Accordingly, it’s my hope that we will continue to acknowledge the rich history of our State, and remain grateful for the contributions and sacrifices of generations past; that we will explore new ways to invest in our residents, businesses, and communities to make them more sustainable, competitive, and economically robust. And as I leave public service, I look forward to continuing to be a part of Hawaiʻi’s future and helping to forge a new path that honors our shared beliefs and my continued commitment to improving the lives of the people of Hawaiʻi.”



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