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Public Access to Pepeekeo Point Shortline Ending Soon

For several years, a temporary arrangement between Hilo Project, LLC and the County of Hawaii has allowed people to safely walk to the Pepeekeo Point Shoreline using the landowners’ property.

The owners have tried, without success, to work out boundary and setback issues through three successive County planning directors and their staffs.  Strong local support has existed for years for the County to permanently receive the safe access route offered by the owners.  The project and temporary access were determined to be safe from erosion on this old sugar mill industrial site.  Nevertheless, the County has taken years too long without securing the safe access for the community.  Landowners regret that they must now modify their project and people will not be able to safely walk to the shoreline anymore.

Effective July 10, 2017, the temporary access used to reach the ocean will be permanently closed.  The owners intend to post a sign showing the location of the existing legal access, but caution that the legal access may be difficult to use and does not reach the walkable shoreline.

22 DUI’s Last Week on the Big Island

During the week of June 19, 2017, through June 25, 2017, Hawaiʻi Island police arrested 22 motorists for driving under the influence of an intoxicant. Six of the drivers were involved in a traffic accident. Two of the drivers were under the age of 21.So far this year, there have been 560 DUI arrests compared with 535 during the same period last year, an increase of 4.67 percent.

There have been 675 major accidents so far this year compared with 720 during the same period last year, a decrease of 6.25 percent.

To date, there were 18 fatal crashes (one of which had multiple deaths), resulting in 20 fatalities, compared with 10 fatal crashes (one of which had multiple deaths), resulting in 11 fatalities for the same time last year. This represents an increase of 80 percent for fatal crashes, and 81.82 percent for fatalities.

DUI roadblocks and patrols will continue island-wide.

Duane Rapoza Jr. Selected East Hawaii Aloha Exchange Club’s Officer of the Month

Officer Duane Rapoza, Jr. (4-year police veteran) has been selected as the East Hawaiʻi Aloha Exchange Club’s June 2017 Officer of the Month. Officer Rapoza was selected for singlehandedly locating and arresting two individuals in high profile cases, the most recent being a person who had fled the scene of a fatal traffic collision, the other being a highly elusive car thief in a brand new stolen vehicle.

Officer Duane Rapoza, Jr.

On (May 17) at around 9:00 p.m. Officer Rapoza and other officers responded to a two-vehicle crash on Highway 130 near Pōhaku Drive, one vehicle was reported to be fully engulfed in flames. Upon Officer Rapoza’s arrival he confirmed it was a fatal traffic crash with a 1990 Toyota Pickup laying on its side, and that the driver of the responsible 2003 Mazda sedan had been observed walking away and lea ving the area.

Officer Rapoza conducted witness interviews, and then advised other officers of his intent to make checks for the registered owner of the vehicle. Officer Rapoza proceeded to the home of the registered owner and successfully located the 26-year-old male, apprehending him before any other officer’s arrival.

On (January 21) at around noon Officer Rapoza was dispatched to a suspicious vehicle report on Amaumau Road in Volcano. Arriving in the area and while conducting checks, he was flagged down by a resident who related there was suspicious activity at a vacant property located up the road. Officer Rapoza drove to the entrance to the property and discretely parked his vehicle at the beginning of the driveway electing to proceed solo on foot through the thick, overgrown foliage. Upon walking up the driveway, Officer Rapoza observed a new white Subaru WRX sedan within the carport of the home and a male and female loading items into the trunk of the vehicle.

As the two individuals become aware of his presence, they immediately dove into the vehicle and attempted to flee, reversing rapidly out of the carport but losing control crashing into some bushes. The occupants then bolted off on foot into a thick, grassy field toward some bushes, Officer Rapoza immediately chased after them and caught the male on the uneven, grassy terrain, after a short struggle he was able to safely apprehend him. The female was able to get away.

As a result of Officer Rapoza’s actions the stolen 2017 Subaru (taken from a car dealership in Kona earlier that week) was recovered, Officer Rapoza additionally recovered a stolen motorcycle, and parts from another stolen Subaru which were discovered in the carport of the vacant residence.

Through his continued actions, Officer Rapoza exemplifies the ʻPolice Department Core Values of Integrity, Professionalism, Compassion, Teamwork and Community Satisfaction.

Hawaii Community Correctional Center – Keanu Krause NOT Mistakenly Released

The Hawaii Community Correctional Center did not mistakenly release Keanu Krause as reported.

Keanu Krause

The Third Circuit Court did not issue orders pertaining to bail or any related paperwork authorizing the continued detention of Keanu Krause at the Hawaii Community Correctional Center (HCCC).  The District Court dismissed his cases and ordered his release. HCCC followed through with the order and released him today at approximately 11 a.m.

Krause is currently once again in Hawaii Police custody and was transported back to HCCC.

Hawaii House Speaker Scott Saiki Responds to Governor’s Intent to Veto List

Rep. Scott K. Saiki, Speaker of the House of Representatives, issued the following statement in response to Gov. David Ige’s list of bills he intends to veto.

Rep. Scott Saiki

“After reviewing the list, the House and Senate leadership will determine whether to convene an override session to address any bills that are actually vetoed. If an override session is not warranted, members may reintroduce their bills in the 2018 session and work to address the Governor’s objections at that time,” said Speaker Saiki.

According to the Hawaii State Constitution, the Legislature may convene on or before Tuesday, July 11, 2017 in Special Session to override a veto. Specific bills may be amended and need a two-thirds vote in both chambers to pass.

On July 11, any measure that has not been signed or vetoed by Gov. Ige will become law with or without his signature.

Hawaii Governor Releases Intent to Veto List

Gov. David Ige has notified legislative leaders and key lawmakers of the 15 bills that are listed on his Intent to Veto list. The Hawai‘i State Constitution requires the governor to notify the Legislature of the bills he intends to veto by June 26.

On July 11, any measure that the governor has not signed or vetoed will become law.

INTENT TO VETO LIST:

SB 1240        RELATING TO AQUATIC LIFE

This bill requires the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) to define “sustainable” and establish a policy for sustainable collection practices through take limits. This bill also prohibits the DLNR from issuing new aquarium fish permits to use fine meshed traps or fine meshed nets and prohibits the transfer of permits after five years.

Rationale: There is concern that the science does not support the claims made by the bill. It will be premature to ban aquarium collection before doing the necessary studies. The DLNR is committed to working with all stakeholders to come up with a better solution.

SB 410          RELATING TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING

This measure broadens the scope of collective bargaining negotiations by requiring negotiations on the implementation of terms and conditions of employment, including making these violations grievable by employees who disagree with such working conditions.

Rationale: This bill directly impacts the ability of state departments to effectively manage its workforce by negating management rights to direct its workforce and requiring union consent on such matters as assignment, transfer and discipline.

SB 562          RELATING TO TORT LIABILITY

This measure requires the Attorney General to defend any civil action or proceeding brought in any court against a county, based on any negligent or wrongful act or omission of a lifeguard who provides lifeguard services at a state beach park.

Rationale: This bill is objectionable because it requires the Attorney General to defend the counties for any civil action or proceeding, without exception.

HB 1414       RELATING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF TAXATION

This bill requires the auditor to investigate and report on problems with the Department of Taxation’s tax system modernization project.

Rationale: The Department of Taxation is awaiting findings and results of an independent verification and validation of the tax system modernization project. The audit would be redundant. The auditor stated that the audit may not yield useful results due to the difficulties tied to investigating a project that is incomplete and undergoing implementation.

HB 1309       RELATING TO GRANTS

This measure requires the Director of Finance to seek repayment of operating grants appropriated by the legislature if the grantee discontinues the activities or services approved in the grant.

Rationale: This bill is contrary to the intent of Chapter 42F, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes, which authorizes the legislature to appropriate general funds to nongovernmental organizations through various state agencies. The Director of Finance does not have the capacity to monitor all grantee programs, and relies on each state agency to enforce the provisions of the grant application and contract between the agency and grantee.

SB 722          RELATING TO EFFICIENCY MEASURES

This measure requires the Director of Finance and a selected state department to develop and implement the efficiency measures pilot project as part of the state’s budget system.

Rationale: Imposing additional requirements for data collection on our state budget system requires re-programming older software on mainframe computers at a time when the state is upgrading its IT systems to cloud-based applications. Limited state resources would be better spent updating our budget IT programs into cloud-based applications.

SB 713          RELATING TO BUDGET DOCUMENTS

This measure requires the six-year program and financial plan and budget to include information on tax expenditures.

Rationale: There is uncertainty in quantifying future revenue loss attributed to certain tax expenditures as changes to tax laws usually elicit changes to taxpayer behavior. Further, there is a lag in the availability of certain tax expenditure data, which would not align with the preparation of the annual budget documents submitted to the Legislature.

HB 1588       RELATING TO GENERAL OBLIGATION FUNDS

This measure prohibits the issuance of general obligation bonds to finance the repair and maintenance of capital assets where the repair and maintenance costs incurred add value to, and prolong the life of the assets for a period of less than ten years.

Rationale: This measure aims to more closely align the financing of debt with the depreciation of the state’s assets. However, like many other state and county governments, Hawai‘i is faced with a growing number of deferred maintenance projects and a limited pool of operation funds for such projects. Further, the record-keeping necessary to ensure compliance with the tiered structuring of the debt could not be done within existing resources, and would therefore increase the costs of the state’s debt management program.

SB 1074        RELATING TO THE FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE HAWAII STATE CAPITOL

This measure appropriates funds to the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts to plan and coordinate the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the Hawai‘i State Capitol.

Rationale: Current provisions of state law establishing the Works of Art Special Fund under 103-8.5, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes, are very specific and do not allow for the financing of a celebration of this nature.

SB 1073        RELATING TO THE STATE FOUNDATION ON CULTURE AND THE ARTS

The measure appropriates funds to the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts to support its artist fellowship program.

Rationale: Current provisions of state law establishing the Works of Art Special Fund under 103-8.5, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes, are very specific and do not allow for the financing of an artist fellowship program.

HB 523         RELATING TO RECYCLING

This measure authorizes the Department of Accounting and General Services (DAGS) to establish a recycling pilot program for the onsite collection of recyclable materials at buildings and facilities.

Rationale: The amount of waste produced is insufficient to merit having an onsite recycling pilot program. The Department of Accounting and General Services regularly recycles cardboards and paper, and janitors recycle the limited amount of bottles and cans produced.

HB 2              RELATING TO AGRICULTURE

This bill authorizes the placement of “tiny homes” of 500 square feet or less of living space within the state agriculture district of Hawai‘i County. These “tiny homes” will be used by farm workers or their immediate families on land currently being used for agricultural production.

Rationale: The Hawai‘i County Zoning Code (HCC Chapter 25) already allows for a “farm dwelling” as a permitted use of agricultural-zoned lands. By Zoning Code definition, a “farm dwelling” means a single-family dwelling located on or used in connection with a farm, or if the agricultural activity provides income to the family occupying the dwelling.

HB 727         RELATING TO MOTORCYCLES

This measure allows the operator of a motorcycle or motor scooter to proceed cautiously between stopped lanes of traffic and on the shoulder lane of highways. The intent is to alleviate congestion and reduce the risk of injury or loss of life.

Rationale: There is concern that this will compromise road safety. The shoulder lane is designed to accommodate stopped vehicles and emergency vehicles on highways, and bicycles on arterial roadways. While the intent of the bill is to reduce risk or injury or loss of life, there is concern that allowing shoulder lane use to these types of vehicles will instead create more danger for the operators of these vehicles.

HB 575         RELATING TO PUBLIC LANDS

This bill establishes a process for the re-leasing or re-negotiation of a lease for public lands classified as commercial or industrial use near the end of the lease. The bill permits the Department of Land and Natural Resources to extend public land leases to school or government entities without recourse to auction, with certain exceptions.

Rationale: There is concern that section 2 of this bill is special legislation and is in violation of Section 5 of Article XI of the Hawai‘i State Constitution. It limits application of the bill to commercial and industrial lands only, without distinguishing these lands from other public lands under lease.

HB 627         RELATING TO PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS

This measure establishes the Office of Public-Private Partnerships within the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, and appropriate funds for a state public-private partnership coordinator position.

Rationale: There is concern that the lone position of a state public-private partnership coordinator will not be sufficient to adequately coordinate interagency collaboration, maintain analysis reports, and develop future public-private partnership opportunities. Having one office manage all public-private partnership contracts, proposals, and negotiations for the state may create a bottleneck that will slow the progress for agencies already involved in these partnerships.

Hawaii Department of Transportation Comments on Earthjustice Lawsuit

The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) is tasked with ensuring that the State of Hawaii’s transportation facilities including its airports and harbors are run in a way that protects the safety and well-being of its citizenry. These facilities play a vital role in the life and economy of the State. Currently, 80% of all goods consumed in the State are imported with over 98% of those goods being shipped through Hawaii’s commercial harbors. HDOT also operates the airport system which services more than 34 million total passengers who fly to and from Hawaii each year.

As a trustee of the State’s environmental resources and as required by law, the HDOT also always works to ensure that these facilities are operated in ways that are protective of the Islands’ sensitive resources including threatened and endangered species. To that end, HDOT recently expended hundreds of millions of dollars to install energy efficient lighting improvements at the State airports and commercial harbors to avoid impacts to sensitive species on the Islands as well as millions of dollars to safely translocate the endangered Nene away from airport facilities. HDOT also continues to work with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other federal agencies to ensure that operation of the facilities minimize environmental impacts and are consistent with state and federal laws.

On June 15, 2017, the HDOT received a notice dated June 15, 2017 from Earthjustice declaring its intent to sue HDOT on behalf of Hui Hoomalu i Ka Aina, the Conservation Council for Hawaii, and the Center for Biological Diversity for alleged violations of the Endangered Species Act in connection with the HDOT’s operation of the State’s airport and harbor facilities. While HDOT cannot comment on the specific allegations given the threatened litigation, HDOT has and will continue to operate its facilities in manners which are protective of all sensitive species and are consistent with legal requirements.

Big Island Police Searching for Missing 17-Year-Old Kona Girl

6/22/17 UPDATE:  Hawai`i Island police have located 17-year-old Leilani Alvarado of Kailua-Kona, who was reported missing.  She was found unharmed on the island of Kauai on Thursday morning (June 21).

Hawai`i Island police are searching for a 17-year-old girl who was reported missing.

Leilani Alvarado was last seen in Kailua-Kona on (May 3)

Leilani Alvarado

She is described as Caucasian, 4-feet-11-inches, 95-pounds with brown hair with red highlights, and brown eyes.

Police ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the island-wide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.00. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers does not record calls or subscribe to any Caller ID Service. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Big Island Police Searching for 15-Year-Old Girl Reported Missing Again

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for a 15-year-old Hilo girl who was reported missing again.

Kahli Akau

Kahli Akau was last seen in South Hilo, in the Olu street area on (May 4).

She is described as Hawaiian, 5-foot-4-inches, 115-pounds with long brown hair, brown eyes, and a fair complexion.

Police ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the island-wide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.00. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime stoppers does not record calls or subscribe to any Calle r ID Service. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Governor Ige to Sign New Bills Into Law Tomorrow

Hawaii Governor David Ige is scheduled to sign the following bills into law tomorrow, Thursday, June 22nd at a bill signing ceremony at the state capital building.

HB 511, HB 852: Ethics – Increases administrative fines for ethics violations, lobbying law and failure to file financial disclosure statements on time.

SB 611: Fire Sprinklers – Extends prohibition on county requirements for automatic sprinklers or sprinkler systems.

HB 1179: Rental Housing Projects – Expands the types of rental housing projects that can be exempt from general excise taxes.

SB 718: Community Courts – Establishes a community court outreach project in the City & County of Honolulu.

HB 845: Inmate Re-entry IDs – Requires the Dept. of Public Safety, various agencies, to issue civil ID cards to inmates and assist in obtaining inmates’ birth certificates, social security cards and other ID necessary for successful reentry into society.

HB 957: Heat Abatement – Authorizes the Dept. of Education to borrow moneys interest-free from the HI Green Infrastructure Loan Program for heat abatement measures at public schools.

HB 916: Loan Repayment for Health Care Professionals – Makes an appropriation for the health care provider loan repayment program administered through the John A. Burns School of Medicine.

HB 89, HB 90: Hospital and Nursing Sustainability – Continues the Hospital Sustainability and Nursing Facility Sustainability Programs for two years.

Schedule of signings:

  • 9:30 a.m.      Ethics — HB 508, HB 511, HB 852
  • 10:00 a.m.    Fire Sprinklers — SB 611
  • 10:30 a.m.    Rental Housing Projects — HB 1179
  • 11:00 a.m.    Community Courts — SB 718
  • 11:30 a.m.     Inmate Re-Entry IDs — HB 845
  • 2:30 p.m.      Heat Abatement — HB 957
  • 3:00 p.m.      Loan Repayment for Health Care Professionals — HB 916
  • 3:30 p.m.      Hospital & Nursing Sustainability — HB 89, HB 90

These signings will be streamed LIVE through the governor’s website.

Hawaii Department of Health Approves Production Centers for Medical Marijuana Licensees on Kauai and Oahu

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) today issued Notices to Proceed to Acquire and Cultivate Marijuana to Manoa Botanicals LLC for their second production center on Oahu and to Green Aloha Ltd. for their first production center on Kauai. The licensees have met all requirements to begin growing marijuana at their approved facilities.

Manoa Botanicals is the third dispensary licensee to complete and operate two medical marijuana production centers. Green Aloha Ltd. is the is the fifth dispensary licensee to receive approval to acquire and grow marijuana at their first production center.  In May, Aloha Green Holdings and Maui Grown Therapies received approvals for their second production centers on Oahu and Maui respectively. In February, Pono Life Sciences on Maui became the fourth licensee to operate a production center.

“The dispensary licensees have made excellent progress in developing their production sites in compliance with all state laws and regulations to provide a safe product and ensure patient and public health and safety,” said Keith Ridley, chief of the DOH Office of Health Care Assurance. “All of the licensees have worked hard to meet state standards to create a quality industry in Hawaii.”

Brian Goldstein, chief executive officer of Manoa Botanicals said, “We’ve put considerable research, time and money into building a growing facility with the most current technology available to ensure consistent high quality products for our patients. Our nursery plants are ready to go, and we can’t wait to see our first harvest this summer.”

Justin Britt, chief executive officer of Green Aloha said, “It took a lot of work to comply with the state laws and regulations to grow cannabis, but it is all worth it because the result is safer, higher quality medicine for Kauai’s patients.”

To receive a Notice to Proceed from DOH, dispensary production centers must comply with statutory and regulatory requirements that include building a secure, enclosed indoor facility; operating a computer software tracking system that interfaces with the state’s system and submits current inventory data of all marijuana seeds, plants and manufactured products in the production center; and authorization from the Narcotics Enforcement Division of the Hawaii State Department of Public Safety.

More information on the Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program is available at http://health.hawaii.gov/medicalmarijuanadispensary/.

A total of eight medical marijuana dispensary licenses were issued in April 2016. Three dispensary licenses for the City and County of Honolulu were issued to Aloha Green Holdings, Inc.; Manoa Botanicals, LLC; and TCG Retro Market 1, LLC dba Cure Oahu. Two licenses for the County of Hawaii were issued to Hawaiian Ethos, LLC and Lau Ola, LLC. Two licenses for the County of Maui were issued to Maui Wellness Group, LLC and Pono Life Sciences Maui, LLC. One license for the County of Kauai was issued to Green Aloha, Ltd.

Each dispensary licensee is allowed to operate two production centers and two retail sites for a total of 16 production centers and 16 retail dispensary locations statewide. Each production center may grow up to 3,000 marijuana plants.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and Members of Congress Sue Trump Administration for Violation of Foreign Emoluments Clause

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02), and Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, announced today their lawsuit against President Trump to enforce the Emoluments Clause of the U.S. Constitution dealing with gifts or benefits the President, or other Administration officials, might receive from foreign governments and businesses. The lawsuit would give Congress the authority to vote on, and approve, any foreign emoluments on a case-by-case basis.


“The American people deserve a president who is a servant leader who they can trust to represent the people’s interests, rather than his or her own. Those who voted for President Trump took him at his word – that having accumulated enough of his own personal wealth, he would be solely focused on serving the American people.

“It is paramount that President Trump divest himself from his properties, especially those abroad, so Americans can trust that this Administration’s foreign policy decisions are not being influenced by the President’s investments. We need to be assured, for example, that U.S.-Saudi policy is not being influenced by a Trump resort or other investments in that country, rather it is crafted to serve the best interests of the American people.

“If President Trump does the right thing by seeking and receiving appropriate congressional approval, stops accepting financial benefits from foreign government officials, and divests himself from his properties, I will withdraw my support from this lawsuit. The people of this country deserve transparency and confidence that the President is acting on their behalf,” Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.

Hawaii Argues to U.S. Supreme Court that Trump Travel Ban is Unnecessary and Unlawful

Today, Hawaii filed a supplemental brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, in which it argues that a new memo issued by President Trump on June 14, 2017 has rendered his controversial travel ban and refugee ban both unnecessary and unlawful.

Click to read

On May 25, 2017, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed an injunction against the travel ban in International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) v. Trump. On June 1, 2017, the Trump Administration asked the United States Supreme Court to stay the Fourth Circuit injunction issued in IRAP v. Trump, grant discretionary review (called certiorari) in IRAP v. Trump, and stay the injunction issued by Hawaii federal district court Judge Derrick K. Watson in Hawaii v. Trump. On June 12, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed Judge Watson’s order on statutory grounds. The Ninth Circuit upheld the district court’s injunction blocking the travel ban and the refugee ban. The only portions of the district court’s injunction that were not upheld concerned internal studies undertaken by the Government and whether the President, rather than his cabinet members, should be named directly. Neither change reduces the effectiveness of the injunction against the travel and refugee bans.

Following the Ninth Circuit’s ruling, the Trump Administration asked the Supreme Court for supplemental briefing to address the Ninth Circuit’s decision. The Trump Administration filed its supplemental brief on June 15, 2017, requesting both a stay of the injunction pending appeal and that the Supreme Court grant certiorari in Hawaii v. Trump, alongside IRAP v. Trump.

Two days after the Ninth Circuit’s decision, on June 14, President Trump had issued a memorandum instructing agencies to begin internal vetting reviews within hours of the Ninth Circuit’s decision taking effect, and to put the travel and refugee bans into effect whenever the remaining injunctions are lifted. Yesterday Judge Watson ordered the injunction to be revised consistent with the Ninth Circuit opinion.

In today’s filing, Hawaii argues in part that since the alleged rationales for the bans were to allow the Government to conduct these internal vetting reviews, the new memo from the President makes clear that the Order’s travel and refugee restrictions are no longer required to accomplish what the Government intended. “The President’s memorandum also empties the present petition for certiorari of any compelling justification. The Government does not explain why this Court’s review would be warranted once the supposed purpose of the Order – the completion of the vetting upgrade – has lapsed, as it almost surely will have by the time this case is heard in October,” Hawaii asserts.

Hawaii’s supplemental brief also states:

“Two Courts of Appeals are now united in enjoining Executive Order No. 13,780—a policy that flouts the limits of Executive power, denigrates Muslim-Americans, and threatens the Nation’s reputation as a place of refuge for immigrants and refugees alike. … Both courts saw that rationale for the sham that it was, one that can neither mask the Order’s denigration of Muslims nor justify ignoring the immigration laws’ finely reticulated limits.”

A copy of Hawaii’s supplemental brief in opposition is attached.

Supplemental Addendum. 

Hawaii Auction of Seized and Forfeited Property this Weekend

A public auction will be held by the State of Hawaii, Department of the Attorney General on June 24, 2017, in the Pikake room of the Neal S. Blaisdell Center.

The auction will include property that was acquired through the State’s Asset Forfeiture Program.  It will also include property from other government agencies and sources. Examples of property to be auctioned include:

  • 2006 Toyota Tacoma Crew Cab 4×4 Pickup
  • 2007 GMV Envoy SUV
  • 2003 Toyota Tundra SR5 Access Cab Pickup
  • Lifted and supercharged 2001 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab 4×4 Pickup
  • Avionics repair equipment
  • Growing lights
  • Gold and Silver Collectible jewelry and coins (including Ming)
  • Rolex watches
  • Artwork
  • Other miscellaneous property

The property to be auctioned may be inspected starting at 11:00 a.m. The auction, conducted by Rosen Auctions, will begin at noon.

For a list, pictures, and more information on the property to be sold, visit www.rosenauctions.com.

The auction is the result of ongoing efforts by state and county law enforcement agencies to fight crime by seizing and forfeiting assets used or acquired in connection with criminal activities.

Assets that were used in, or obtained from, the commission of certain criminal offenses can be seized and forfeited under the state’s asset forfeiture law.

Taking away the tools criminals use to commit crimes and the profits from those crimes are ways to deter and impede criminal conduct.

Proceeds from this auction will be used by state and county law enforcement agencies to combat crime.

Employees (and their immediate family members) of county police departments, county prosecuting attorney’s offices, and the Department of the Attorney General are not eligible to purchase forfeited property.

Anyone having information about individuals who are profiting from criminal activity should call the Crime Stoppers hotline at (808) 955-8300.

Officer Joshua Baumgarner Presented With “Bronze Medal of Merit”

Officer Joshua Baumgarner was presented with a Bronze Medal of Merit yesterday (June 15) by Hawaiʻi Police Chief Paul K. Ferreira. The Officer’s wife and daughter were by his side to share his special moment.

On September 23, 2016, Officer Baumgarner and Officer Roberto Segobia responded to a report of a home accident in the Hawaiian Beaches Subdivision in the District of Puna. Upon arriving, the victim’s husband reported that his wife was bleeding extensively from several lacerations on her right forearm and upper arm. Officer Baumgarner saw that the victim was pale and laying in a pool of blood.

Using his knowledge as a Combat Medic in the Hawaiʻi National Guard, he quickly and calmly applied direct pressure to the victim’s bronchial artery to control the bleeding and elevated her feet to prevent shock. He reassured her that she was going to be okay and continued to maintain pressure to control the bleeding. When the Hawaiʻi Fire Department Medic Unit arrived, they transported the victim to the Hilo Medical Center for further treatment. Personnel from the Hawaiʻi Fire Department Medic Unit confirmed that the outcome of the situation would have potentially been different if not for the first aid treatment Officer Baumgarner provided.

“With deep and heartfelt appreciation, the Hawaiʻi Police Department is pleased to award you with a Bronze Medal of Merit for your heroic and selfless act. Another display of the Police Department Core Values of Integrity, Professionalism, Compassion, Teamwork, and Community Satisfaction, said the Chief.”

Hawaii Police Department 85th Recruit Class Graduation

Congratulations are in order to the 85th Recruit Class of the Hawai`i Police Department who were honored yesterday (June 15) at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel surrounded by proud family, friends and colleagues. Graduates are Debney Jaramillo, Erica Carballo, Jarrin Okutsu, Bryson Arquitola-Takiue, Lawrence Yeung, and Adam Hanes.

There were 14 who started out together, but only six made it through to the end under the watchful eyes of Sergeant Paul Fukuda, Sergeant Duffy Duldulao and Officer Daniel Rances. Two of the graduates are female and four are males.

The Master of Ceremonies was Sergeant Reynold Kahalewai. The Invocation was offered by Chaplain George Kamakahi and speakers included Keith T. Morioka (Police Commission), Dabney Jaramillo (Class President) and Tracey Wise (Department of Heal th, Adult Mental Health Division. Mr. Kamakahi and Ms. Wise spoke about the road ahead for the new officers and the great challenges and responsibility placed on their shoulders. They also thanked the families for all of their support and encouragement as the officer’s move into the field-training phase of their careers.

As Class President Debney Jaramillo recalled, “The first challenge was to get 14-people on the same page. We were constantly prepped throughout our 10-month training period both mentally and physically; this was a humbling experience for us all. As we continue our journey we would like to show our appreciation to our family, friends, training staff and instructors for their support and dedication.”

Their class motto is “Ka Ikaika Mālama me ke Aloha” (The strong serve with aloha).

Presentation of Certificates, Awards, Badge Pinning and Reaffirmation of Oath was under the direction of Chief Paul K. Ferreira.

Lawsuit Launched to Stop Hawaii’s Airport, Harbor Lights From Killing Rare Seabirds

Conservation groups today filed a formal notice of intent to sue the Hawaii Department of Transportation for failing to prevent bright lighting at state-operated airports and harbors on Kauai, Maui and Lānai from causing injuries and death to three species of critically imperiled seabirds.

The Newell’s shearwater is a threatened species, and Hawaiian petrels and band-rumped storm petrels in Hawaii are endangered species. According to today’s notice from Hui Ho‘omalu i Ka ‘Āina, Conservation Council for Hawai‘i and the Center for Biological Diversity, represented by nonprofit law firm Earthjustice, the department’s failure to protect these native seabirds from harmful operations at its facilities violates the federal Endangered Species Act.

“Since ancient times, Hawaiian fishermen have looked to the ‘a‘o (Newell’s shearwater) to help them find fish,” said Kauai fisherman Jeff Chandler of Hui Ho‘omalu i Ka ‘Āina, which works to protect cultural and natural resources. “They’re an important part of our culture, and the Department of Transportation needs to take seriously its kuleana (responsibility) to protect them.”

The seabirds circle the bright lights at the department’s facilities until they fall to the ground from exhaustion or crash into nearby buildings. Bright lights have contributed significantly to the catastrophic 94 percent decline in the population of threatened Newell’s shearwaters on Kauai since the 1990s. They have also harmed endangered Hawaiian petrels, whose numbers on Kauai have plummeted by 78 percent in the same period.

“Fixing the lights so these magnificent seabirds on the brink of extinction aren’t killed is completely feasible,” said Brian Segee, an attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “Instead, the department is doing everything in its power to avoid protecting these highly imperiled native Hawaiian birds. It’s worse than irresponsible — it’s unethical and illegal.”

Last October the department abruptly broke off discussions with federal and state wildlife agencies regarding its participation in an island-wide habitat conservation plan to minimize and mitigate harm to the rare seabirds on Kauai.

“By withdrawing from talks on Kauai, the department left the county of Kauai and private entities holding the bag to address harm from the airports and harbors, even though the department’s facilities are among the largest sources of illegal death and injury on the island,” said Marjorie Ziegler of Conservation Council for Hawai‘i. “The department needs to fulfill its duty under Hawaii’s constitution to conserve and protect our natural heritage, not stick its head in the sand and do nothing.”

The groups seek to compel the department to comply with its obligations under the Endangered Species Act to minimize and mitigate harm to the imperiled seabirds by securing incidental take permit coverage of its activities on all three islands. The Act requires that citizens provide 60 days’ advance notice before filing a lawsuit to address illegal activities.

“Time is running out for these rare and culturally important seabirds,” said David Henkin, an Earthjustice attorney representing the groups. “If the Hawaii Department of Transportation continues to shirk its obligations under the Endangered Species Act, we’ll see them in court.”

Click to read full letter

Hawaii DLNR Enforcement Division Launches New DLNRTip App

Last weekend a man sent DLNR Chair Suzanne Case photographs of two hammerhead sharks, left dead near the He‘eia Small Boat Harbor on Windward O‘ahu.  It’s impossible to determine how they died.  Were they hooked and discarded?  Were they caught up in a net?  Did someone kill them illegally?  This is exactly the kind of situation the DLNR hopes people will report immediately using its new DLNRTip app.

The DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) launched the new app to help people connect directly with conservation officers, view alerts, and submit anonymous tips from smartphones. It is an important extension of the agencies DLNR & You brand.

Developed by tip411, the DLNRTip app is an innovative program that encourages people to provide DOCARE with factual information leading to the arrest of anyone who poaches or harasses protected wildlife species, pollutes, or violates any State conservation resources rules.  1400 communities around the country are currently using the application developed by and managed by tip411. DLNRTip is available for download for free via the Google Play Store, iTunes App Store, or by visiting the DOCARE website at dlnr.hawaii.gov/docare.

“Our stated mission is to serve to protect, conserve and manage Hawaiʻi’s unique and limited natural, cultural and historic resources held in public trust for current and future generations of visitors and the people of Hawai’i nei,” said Robert Farrell, DOCARE Enforcement Chief. DLNR Chair Suzanne Case commented, “We think DLNRtip is a natural extension of the DLNR & You brand and furthers our belief that we can’t protect our state’s natural and cultural resources without the thousands of eyes and ears of concerned citizens who can serve as proxies for DOCARE officers who clearly cannot be everywhere, all the time. DLNRTip will better connect our officers to people and expedite receipt of tips of wrongdoing and our subsequent responses.”

“We’re proud to partner with agencies like DLNR/DOCARE to help better connect members of the public with law enforcement to share information,” said tip411 President Terry Halsch.  “DLNRTip powered by tip411Mobile will greatly improve the public’s access to agency alerts, social media channels, important information, and more, to help protect natural and cultural resources in Hawai‘i.”

The DLNRTip app and tip411 are completely anonymous, as the technology removes all identifying information before officers see tips so there is no way to identify senders. People without a smartphone will be able to send an anonymous text tip via their cell phone to DOCARE by texting keyword DLNRTIP and their message/tip to 847411 (tip411).  Anonymous web tips can also be submitted through the DOCARE website noted above.  DOCARE will also continue to take calls and tips on its Statewide Hotline, 643-DLNR or 643-3567

Nā Leo TV to Air “Hawai’i Island Conversations” on Topic of Thirty Meter Telescope

Nā Leo TV announces they will be broadcasting live their June edition of “Hawai’i Island Conversations.” This special show will feature a panel discussion on the Thirty Meter Telescope project, a proposed astronomical observatory that has become the source of controversy over its planned location on Mauna Kea. Tentatively scheduled to appear on the panel are Harry Fergerstrom, E. Kalani Flores, Kealoha Pisciotta, along with Douglas Ing, Paul Coleman, and Richard Ha.

The show will air live, Thursday, June 15, 2017, on Channel 53 at 6:00 p.m. HWST and will stream online at www.naleo.tv and on Facebook Live at @naleotv. The show will be rebroadcast on the Nā Leo TV Channels and will be available on Video on Demand at www.naleo.tv/vod/

“Hawai’i Island Conversations” is a new series highlighting relevant topics, stories and people impacting Hawai’i Island.

Nā Leo TV, broadcasting on Oceanic Time Warner Cable public access Channels 53, 54, and 55, via the internet at www.naleo.tv and on social media at @naleotv.

Multi-Million Dollar Lawsuit Against State of Hawaii Dismissed

Hawaii federal judge Susan Oki Mollway yesterday dismissed a lawsuit filed by a private landowner against the State of Hawaii after the State Land Use Commission in 2011 reverted more than 1,000 acres of land in South Kohala on Hawaii island from urban to agricultural use, Attorney General Doug Chin announced.

Earlier this year Plaintiff DW Aina Lea Development, LLC (DW) sued the State claiming that the decision by the Land Use Commission was a constitutional taking of DW’s property without compensation. The State argued that DW was not damaged and that the lawsuit was brought too late after applicable statutes of limitation had passed. Judge Mollway agreed with the State that DW’s lawsuit was time-barred.

Attorney General Doug Chin

Attorney General Chin said, “The attorneys in my office take very seriously all claims against the State and will fight to not pay anything to claimants who are not entitled to payment or who fail to follow the rules. This owner came to court too late and will leave with nothing.”

The Land Use Commission had taken action in 2011 to revert the South Kohala land because a requirement to build affordable housing there remained unfulfilled more than 20 years after the original reclassification. The Hawaii Supreme Court later reversed the Commission’s decision based on money various developers spent on preliminary work.

The same land is the subject of another lawsuit brought by a prior landowner and developer, Bridge Aina Lea, LLC, that is claiming up to $40 million in damages based on the same action by the Commission. Bridge Aina Lea, LLC, filed its lawsuit against the State in 2011. Trial in this other case is scheduled for March of 2018.