Hawaii Residents Part of Ring Guilty of Cigarette Trafficking

I know a person or two that orders cigarettes online to avoid state taxes.  They better be careful!

Four former leaders of the Stillaguamish Indian Tribe must pay more than $25 million to Washington state that should have been charged as taxes on cigarettes sold at the Blue Stilly Smoke Shop in Arlington…

…Sara Schroedl, a cousin of the Goodridges, also pleaded guilty to the charges…

None of the 5.3 million cigarettes found that day bore a state tax stamp, which is how vendors show that taxes have been paid. The four tribal members made at least $55 million selling tax-free cigarettes between March 2003 and May 2007 at the Blue Stilly, where smokers found tobacco products for half the price of the same products sold at shops that charged the state tax…

Schroedl said the Goodridge family asked her and her husband, Dan, who is not a tribal member, in March 2003 if they wanted to invest in the smoke shop. The smoke shop had been run for several years by Stormmy Paul, a Tulalip tribal member, but the Goodridge family told Paul to leave about the same time that they asked Schroedl to become a partner in the business.

The smoke shop was raided in 2001, when it was under Paul’s operation. Paul was convicted late last year of running a cigarette smuggling ring that stretched between South America, Asia and his home on the Tulalip Indian Reservation. He’s currently serving a one-year sentence of home detention…

Over the next four years, the Schroedl’s took in $5 million in cash, according to court documents — enough to move to Arizona, then to Hawaii, where they currently live

The Blue Stilly Smoke Shop closed only briefly after the 2007 raid, and has been open ever since. The Stillaguamish Indian Tribe earlier this year negotiated a cigarette compact with the state that includes a tax. The tax boosts the price of the cigarettes so the Blue Stilly doesn’t undercut other smoke shops that charge state tax. The compact allows the tribe to keep the money made from the tax.

Schroedl said she is still 33 percent owner of the smoke shop…

More Here and Here

"Fast" Eddie Goodridge

Turkey Talk… Just in Time for Thanksgiving

Sarah Palin giving an interview while they are slaughtering turkeys behind her.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-kjM1asH-8&hl=en&fs=1]

BJ Penn vs. GSP… The HOT 93.9 Radio Interview

I love it… they tell GSP that the Manapua is cat!  It’s an old joke around here… and to tell you the truth, I fell for it too when I was first living in the UH Hilo Dorms.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpedveNR-jI&hl=en&fs=1]

Big Island Newspapers Cut Reporter Nancy Cook Lauer

The owner of the two Big Island daily newspapers has closed its State Capitol bureau in Honolulu two and a half years after it opened…

…Among those cut was Nancy Cook Lauer, who had covered state government in Honolulu since January 2006. Lauer previously worked at newspapers in Florida, including the Tallahassee Democrat and Naples Daily News.

That leaves The Honolulu Advertiser, the Honolulu Star-Bulletin and the Associated Press as the only news organizations with a permanent presence in the capitol.

Full Article Here

lauermug

Blue Jellyfish I Filmed in the Ala Wai Canal… And They Say the Ala Wai is Safe to Paddle In

A couple years ago, I was walking down the Ala Wai Canal and I happened to spot a blue jellyfish!

I just happened to have my camera with me at the time, so I was able to capture a few movies of the jellyfish.

Every month it seems like Waikiki is getting hit with Jellyfish.  In today’s paper 400 were seen alone in Waikiki.

I had never seen a blue jellyfish so I wonder how toxic it was.  If it was living in the Ala Wai Canal, then I’m sure it’s pretty damn toxic.  Still to this day, people use the Ala Wai Canal for recreational purposes.

First video is when I initially spotted it:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5joRyeGKyc&hl=en&fs=1]

Second Video: I stopped this lady on the Ala Wai to show her the video.  I don’t know what I was thinking of stopping her… I was just so amazed at seeing the Blue Jellyfish, that I wanted to show it to someone else at the time just to make sure I wasn’t seeing things (Audio a must):

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mc2WjQnVNzc&hl=en&fs=1]

The Calm Before the Storm

I’m telling you… I think were about to get soaked and this is only the calm before the storm.

Accuweather is reporting torrential rains with Kauai getting up to 8″ of rain, however, Big Island won’t get that much.

A Kona Low pressure system is going to bring in a bunch of rain in the next 48 hours:

rain

Today’s KO

The reason why I didn’t teach my soccer team fancy  “Throw-in’s”

Audio a must:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZ0thujwaDY&hl=en&fs=1]

Two Huge Hawaii Projects Halted Because of Economy

Can you say Hawaii Economy TANKING!

1. Marriott has halted construction at its $1.4 billion Kauai Lagoons resort project, one of the largest Hawaii construction projects to be interrupted by the ailing national economy.

2. Starwood Vacation Ownership also has put a $304 million Maui time-share project on hold.

More Here