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Consumers Holding Island Air Tickets Should Seek Refunds Immediately

Hawaiʻi consumers who purchased unused Island Air travel tickets by credit or debit card are urged to contact their credit or debit card providers to seek refunds, according to Office of Consumer Protection Executive Director Stephen Levins.

Island Air has discontinued operations, and the contracted travel services paid for will not be delivered. Consumers seeking refunds should act as soon as possible, and seek other arrangements for their travel plans.

Hawaiʻi Island Air, Inc., dba Island Air filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Monday, Oct. 16, 2017, but less than one month later, ceased operations on Saturday, Nov. 11th, 2017.

With bankruptcy court approval received on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017, the company has since converted its case to Chapter 7 bankruptcy. A trustee has been appointed to oversee the liquidation of the company’s unencumbered assets to generate cash to pay creditors. The liquidation process will be lengthy and what will be available for creditors is unclear. In circumstances such as this the consumers’ best option is to obtain refunds from their card providers.

“In most instances paying by credit card makes is easier for consumers to obtain a refund for services or goods that are not provided,” said Executive Director Levins. “In view of this, anyone who purchased an unused ticket by credit card needs to contact their credit card company as soon as possible to request a chargeback.”

There are time limits that consumers need to pay attention to when applying for a refund. Although some credit card companies may establish more generous policies federal law establishes a 60-day deadline from the time a credit card statement with the improper charge is first posted. For more information on how to request a refund or a chargeback, consumers should call their credit card company or review their statement.

More information on disputing credit card charges is available on the Federal Trade Commission website.

Na Leo ‘O Hawaii Public Access Television President on Bad Legislation

Another bad legislative bill going before committee today has come to my attention. HB2654 talks about improving broadband infrastructure in Hawaii, which is good, but also moves cable regulation to DBEDT from DCCA which is BAD for oversight. DBEDT is a ‘resource center’ whereas DCCA is in charge of ‘protecting the community from unfair and deceptive business practices.’

Also nothing in HB2654 to continue funding Community Access Television, BAD.

There are aspects of the bill which are good, hey, who wouldn’t like better broadband internet access? But other portions need to be rewritten to better serve the public.

At this time I urge those of you on the committee hearing the bill today to vote ‘NO’ on HB2654 and for other representatives to oppose it should the bill move forward as written.

Mahalo Nui Loa,

Baron Sekiya

President, Na Leo ‘O Hawai‘i Public Access Television