Legislative Alert – SB765 Scheduled for Senate Hearing: Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Legislation introduced by Senator Shimabukuro has been scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Consumer Protection.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015, 9:00 a.m.
Hawaii State Capitol, Conference Room 229
415 South Beretania Street

SB765 would require an insurer in a claim under uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage to pay to the claimant an amount the insurer deems reasonable within thirty days of a demand for payment of the claim. SB 765 would also require any undisputed amount paid to a claimant to be disclosed to the arbitrator or judge and deducted from the amount of any judgment or award.

The deadline to submit testimony is Monday, February 2, 2015, at 9:00 a.m.

For more information on SB765, including bill text and to submit testimony, click here for bill status.

Department of Human Services Announces Application Period for Preschool Open Doors Program

The Department of Human Services (DHS) will be accepting applications for its Preschool Open Doors (POD) program between March 1 and April 30, 2015.

Applications received during this period will be considered for preschool participation between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016.

POD is a DHS child care subsidy program that provides statewide services to eligible low- and moderate-income families sending their children to a licensed preschool, prior to kindergarten entry. The goal of POD is to promote school readiness and to provide children with the opportunity to gain essential foundational skills they need to be successful in life.

Families are reminded that a child must be five years old on or before July 31 to enter kindergarten. Families with children born between August 1, 2010 and July 31, 2011 are encouraged to apply for the POD program.  Underserved or at-risk children will receive priority consideration for the 2015-2016 POD year.

POD applications will be available from the DHS contractor, PATCH, beginning March 1, 2015.  To reserve your packet on Oahu call 791-2130; on the Neighbor Islands call 1-800-746-5620.

Starting March 1, applications also can be downloaded from the PATCH website http://www.patchHawaii.org.

Applications must be received by April 30, 2015 to be considered for the 2015-2016 program year.

Return the completed POD application to: PATCH – POD 560 North Nimitz Highway, Suite 218 Honolulu, HI 96817

POD subsidies help Hawaii families pay tuition at any of the state’s 424 licensed group child care facilities (i.e. preschools). Eligible families may select the preschool of their choice.  Contact the PATCH office to find a preschool in your area. Priorities for POD program selection are detailed in HAR 17-799 posted on the DHS website at http://humanservices.hawaii.gov/admin-rules-2/admin-rules-for-programs/.

For more information about DHS programs and services, visit www.humanservices.hawaii.gov.

Media Contacts: Kayla Rosenfeld, DHS Public Information Officer 586-4892; krosenfeld@dhs.hawaii.gov; http://humanservices.hawaii.gov

Legislative Alert – SB774 Scheduled for Senate Hearing: Monday, February 2, 2015

Legislation introduced by Senator Shimabukuro has been scheduled for a joint hearing before the Senate Committee on Water and Land, the Committee on Agriculture, and the Committee on Hawaiian Affairs.

Monday, February 2, 2015, 3:15 p.m.
Hawaii State Capitol, Conference Room 224
415 South Beretania Street

SB774 would create a classification of agricultural public lands entitled “taro lands”, and would appropriate funds to the board of land and natural resources to create an inventory of lands classified as taro lands.

The deadline to submit testimony is Sunday, February 1, 2015, at 3:15 p.m.

For more information on SB774, including bill text and to submit testimony, click here for bill status.

Job Tree

Listing provided on January 27, 2015

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Parents and Children Together (PACT) Job Opportunities

Listings are current as of January 26, 2015.

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Senator Shimabukuro’s February Column in Westside Stories

Aloha!

Here is a preview of some of the bills I am working on this session:

HOUSING & HOMELESSNESS

Mobile Home Parks: Legalization of trailer parks for low-income individuals on public and private land.  Allows shipping containers to be used as residential structures at these parks.

Hawaiian Home Lands Rentals:  Makes permanent Acts which require the counties to issue affordable housing credits for each residential unit developed by DHHL.  Adds incentives for condominiums, rentals, and other multi-family developments.

AGRICULTURE

Farm Worker Housing: Allows shipping containers to be used for farm worker housing on agricultural lands, under certain restrictions.

Taro Lands: Preserves wetland taro lands and infrastructure on undeveloped lands; establishes a 4th taro lands classification for public lands, and permits structures for lo‘i taro fields in the agricultural district.  Establishes growth and perpetuation of traditional Hawaiian crops as a goal of the State Planning Act, and authorizes BLNR, with the Taro Security and Purity Task Force, to create an inventory of taro lands.

CONSUMER PROTECTION

Retirement Benefits: Allows divorcing spouses to obtain direct payment from the other spouse’s state “Employees Retirement System” (ERS) benefits.

Auto Accident Recovery: Requires insurance companies to promptly pay claimants the minimum undisputed monetary damages while litigation is on-going.

Worker’s Compensation: Requires doctors conducting “independent medical examinations” (IME) for workers compensation purposes to be practicing doctors in the state of HI.

Mahalo for the privilege of serving you.  Contact me with your concerns, at 586-7793.  Happy Valentine’s Day!

Photo caption: Sen. Shimabukuro met with DHHL to discuss rental housing, a potential columbarium in Waianae, Kaupuni Park, and DHHL’s legislative priorities.  L-R: Sen. Shimabukuro, DHHL Director Jobie Masagatani, DHHL beneficiary Kapua Keli`ikoa-Kama`i, DHHL legislative liaison Dreanalee Kalili, and DHHL Deputy Director William Aila, Jr.

Photo caption: Sen. Shimabukuro met with DHHL to discuss rental housing, a potential columbarium in Waianae, Kaupuni Park, and DHHL’s legislative priorities. L-R: Sen. Shimabukuro, DHHL Director Jobie Masagatani, DHHL beneficiary Kapua Keli`ikoa-Kama`i, DHHL legislative liaison Dreanalee Kalili, and DHHL Deputy Director William Aila, Jr. (click to enlarge)

Legislative Alert – SB392 Scheduled for Senate Hearing: This Saturday, January 31

Legislation introduced by Senator Shimabukuro has been scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Committee on Human Services and Housing.

Saturday, January 31, 2015, 1:15 p.m.
Hawaii State Capitol, Conference Room 229
415 South Beretania Street

SB392 would amend the income tax credit for low-income household renters to adjust for inflation, and would apply to taxable years beginning after 12/31/2015.

The deadline to submit testimony is Friday, January 30, 2015, at 1:15 p.m.

For more information on SB392, including bill text and to submit testimony, click here for bill status.

Kahumana Organic Farm-To-Table Event: This Saturday, January 31

Kahumana Organic Farm & Café is holding a Farm-To-Table Event

WHEN:
Saturday January 31, 2015
4:30 PM to 8:00 PM HST

WHERE:
Kahumana Organic Farm & Café
86-660 Lualualei Homestead Roadd
Wai‘anae, HI 96792

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Click here for more information

Notice of Public Hearing, Docket No. 2014-0308, Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc. – Power Purchase Agreement for Renewable As-Available Energy with Ka La Nui Solar, LLC: February 12, 2015

Notice of Public Hearing Re: Docket No. 2014-0308, Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc. – Power Purchase Agreement for Renewable As-Available Energy with Ka La Nui Solar, LLC

The Commission will hold a public hearing as follows:
February 12, 2015, 3:30 p.m.
Nanaikapono Elementary School Cafeteria
89-153 Mano Avenue
Waianae, Oahu

Attached is a copy of the Notice of Public Hearing. The last page of the Notice sets forth the publication and corresponding publication dates.

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Kupuna Independent Life Series

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Waianae Homeschool Ohana 2015: Feb 2, 13, 23

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Kamaile Academy Family Dinner/Governing Board Meeting 1/28/15 at 5:30pm

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Introduction to Database Research This Saturday 1/24/15

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Opening Day 2015 Photos: Senator Maile Shimabukuro

Updated 1/23/15

Updated 2/13/15: Here is a link to additional photos taken by Stacy Garcia, Jr. (legislative aide): https://maileswaianaecoastphotos.shutterfly.com/2992

Jan. 21, 2015: Opening day of the legislature. Staff, friends, family, and supporters joined Senator Shimabukuro to celebrate the occasion.

Jan. 21, 2015: Opening day of the legislature. Staff, friends, family, and supporters joined Senator Shimabukuro to celebrate the occasion. Former aide, Wally Inglis, who worked with the senator for most of her political career, stopped by to say hello. Longtime family friends Rolando and Susan Cruz, who now live in San Diego, also stopped by with their granddaughter, Ciena Jadu, who is now attending UH-Manoa. Click the images to enlarge them.

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Photo from Derek Mukai.

Photo from Derek Mukai.

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Students Sought for Media Internships – Deadline 2/28/15

Star-Advertiser, 1/16/15

The Hawaii Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is seeking candidates for 14 summer internships for print, online and broadcast journalism and public relations.

Eligible applicants must be Hawaii residents enrolled in a college or university and who attended a high school in Hawaii or any student enrolled in a college or university in Hawaii.

Full-time internships (10 weeks at 40 hours per week) with a $3,600 salary will be available at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Pacific Business News, Hawai‘i magazine, Hawaii Business magazine, Honolulu magazine, Pacific Edge magazine, Hono­lulu Civil Beat, HuffPost Hawaii, The Hawaii Independent (online news), Hawaii News Now, KHON Channel 2 and Alexander & Baldwin (public relations).

Part-time internships (eight weeks at 27 hours per week) with a $2,106 salary will be at Hawaii Public Radio and KITV Channel 4 TV news.

To apply, go to http://www.ha­waii­spj.org to download an application form.

Applicants should also write a cover letter that introduces themselves and explains why they want an internship, as well as list relevant coursework or news media experience and include three references and their contact information. Applicants should also include samples of news media work.

Materials should be emailed to spjinterns@gmail.com by Feb. 28.

For more information, contact SPJ’s Craig DeSilva at (808) 282-1038 or at cdesilva@hotmail.com.

DOT: Oahu Weekend Closures – Jan. 16-18, 2015

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

DAVID Y. IGE GOVERNOR FORD N. FUCHIGAMI DIRECTOR

For Immediate Release: Jan. 15, 2015 15-0018
OAHU LANE CLOSURES FOR THE WEEKEND OF JAN. 16 – JAN. 18 PLEASE NOTE: Lane closure schedules may change at any time without further notice. All projects are weather permitting.   — H-1 FREEWAY —

1) SALT LAKE TO HONOLULU INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Three lanes closed on the H-1 Freeway in the eastbound direction between the Radford Drive Overpass and the Airport Off-Ramp (Exit 16) from 9 p.m., Friday, Jan. 16, through 3 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 18, for deck repairs.  The On-Ramp originating from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam will also be closed. Speed limits will be reduced to 15 mph in order to minimize traffic induced vibrations that may lead to cracking in the newly repaired deck. Airport Viaduct improvements include concrete deck replacements, expansion joint repairs, and pavement restriping.  Work is located between the Pearl Harbor Interchange and the Keehi Interchange.
— NIMITZ HIGHWAY —

1) SALT LAKE TO HONOLULU INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Three right lanes closed on Nimitz Highway in the eastbound direction between Elliott Street and Aolele Street from 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 16, through 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 18, as a safety precaution due to deck repairs happening above.
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KHON2: ‘President Obama’s Paid Sick Leave Plan Gets Mixed Reactions’ (1/14/15)



The following are excerpts from the article/video by Manolo Morales, published 14 Jan. 2015. For the full report, go to KHON2.

A national study says more than 40 percent of workers in the private sector do not get paid sick leave. They come to work unable to be at their best as well as get their co-workers sick.

That’s why President Barack Obama is calling on all businesses to give their workers up to seven paid sick days a year.

Goran Streng, chef and owner of Tango Contemporary Cafe, has 25 employees. He says that added cost has to be added on to the customers just to keep his business profitable.

Gregg Fraser, executive director of the Hawaii Restaurant Association, says paid sick leave may add to the already staggering number of restaurants that go out of business within the first year of operating.

The president’s proposal is actually meant to increase productivity by helping workers recover faster and prevent germs from spreading.

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The president’s proposal would require seven days a year and a state lawmaker says overall it’s a good idea.

“I’m sure there would be debate and we’d try to balance the needs of the employers and the needs of the employee, but I think overall, I would think it would be something that we would support,” said state Sen. Maile Shimabukuro, (D-Kalaeloa, Ko Olina, Nanakuli, Maili, Waianae), vice chair of the Senate labor committee.

But, Shimabukuro says, it’s important that employees don’t abuse that right, so there should be certain safeguards like requiring a doctor’s note. “That at least shows that I truly was sick, here’s some proof from my doctor, and it’s not something where you can just call in and claim to be sick,” she said.

Obama will ask Congress to pass the measure and will also ask cities and different states to pass similar laws at the local level.

See the full report on KHON2.

2015 Preschool Readiness Day in Ma‘ili 1/24/15, 9am-12pm

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Farrington Hwy Single-Lane Closures in Nanakuli – 1/14/15, 9am – 3:30pm

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
DAVID Y. IGE
GOVERNOR
FORD N. FUCHIGAMI
DIRECTOR

January 13, 2015

TRAFFIC REMINDER: FARRINGTON HIGHWAY SINGLE LANE CLOSURE SCHEDULED WEDNESDAY IN NANAKULI

HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) reminds Oahu motorists of a single lane closure on Farrington Highway in the eastbound direction between Helelua Street and Nanakuli Avenue on Wednesday, Jan. 14, from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  Crews will be repositioning concrete barriers on the makai-side of the highway fronting the Ka Waihona o Ka Naauao Public Charter School.

Special duty police officers will be on-site manually directing traffic through the Helelua Street, Haleakala Avenue and Nanakuli Avenue intersections to mitigate traffic.  A traffic message board has been placed near the work zone to notify motorists of the upcoming work.  Motorists are advised to anticipate delays and to drive with caution through the work zone area.

This work is part of the Farrington Highway Intersection Improvements project that will address traffic congestion between Nanakuli Avenue and Haleakala Avenue.  At an approximate construction cost of $10.1 million, the project will widen the existing four-lane highway between Nanakuli Avenue and Haleakala Avenue to include a new 10-foot-wide auxiliary lane to accommodate vehicles making left turns.

The project will also create a new eight-foot-wide shared use path for pedestrians and bicyclists, relocate utilities and upgrade traffic signal, street lighting and drainage systems.  Work will require a realignment of the existing OR&L railroad tracks on the makai-side to accommodate the widened highway through the area.  Project completion is anticipated in May of 2016.

DOT Update 1/13/15

There were no lane closures today as the contractor was able to complete the lane restriping portion of the work yesterday.

***They will still be going through the closures tomorrow to update the barriers.

More information will be released in a DOT press release later today.

With respect to rail related work, most activity will be done behind concrete barriers over the next 3-4 months, requiring no lane closures. For the next phase of the rail project, DOT is working to obtain permits to allow work at night, and the outcome of that is still pending.