Gov. Neil Abercrombie has withdrawn at least 16 of his government appointees — 10 within the last 10 days.
That works out to 6 percent of the total 263 appointments the governor has informed the state Senate of as of April 13.
Among the latest withdrawn appointees is John Garibaldi, the former Hawaii Superferry executive, whom the governor nominated on March 22 to serve on the board of directors of the Hawaii Hurricane Relief Fund.
On April 6 the governor notified the Senate that Garibaldi had withdrawn his name.
By comparison, 10 of the appointees made by former Gov. Linda Lingle withdrew during her first legislative session.
Abercrombie’s first session as governor does not end until May 5, so it is possible there may be more withdrawals.
As happened to Abercrombie, one of Lingle’s appointees withdrew from a Cabinet-level position — the Department of Public Safety for Lingle, the Department of Health for Abercrombie.
But Abercrombie also saw one of his judicial appointments withdraw.
A spokeswoman for the Abercrombie administration said his withdrawn appointees chose to do so.
Major and Minor Appointees
Some of Lingle’s withdrawn appointees during the 2003 Hawaii Legislature — view the full list of appointees here — would have served on boards and commissions that have little impact on broad public policy: the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners, the Board of Psychology, the State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology.
Others would have served on the Civil Rights Commission, the Commission on Water Resource Management, and the board of directors of the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation — arguably of greater scope.
Abercrombie’s withdrawn appointees during the 2011 Hawaii Legislature — view the full list of appointees here — include some that would have served on the Board of Massage Therapy, the Radiologic Technology Board, and the Board of Professional Engineers, Architects, Surveyors, and Landscape Architects.
But others would have served on the Hawaiian Homes Commission, the Corrections Population Management Commission, the Hawaii Public Housing Authority board of directors, the High Technology Development Corporation board of directors, the Hawaii Housing Finance and Development Corporation board of directors, the Board of Trustees of the Employees’ Retirement System, and the Island Burial Council, Islands of Kauai and Niihau.
Like Garibaldi, another of Abercrombie’s withdrawn appointees — L.P. “Neenz” Faleafine — is a familiar name.
Faleafine, who was appointed to the Hawaii Public Housing Authority board of directors March 4 before withdrawing March 23, handled social media for Abercrombie’s gubernatorial campaign and helped with the transition.
All 16 of Abercrombie’s withdrawn appointees required state Senate confirmation. Only six of Lingle’s 10 withdrawn appointees did.
One of Abercrombie’s withdrawals, Ernest Matsumura, was appointed to the Land Use Commission and the Hawaii Housing Finance and Development Corporation board of directors on the same day. He quickly withdrew from the latter, but as of this writing remains a candidate to serve the LUC.
Another appointee, Leivallyn Kaupu to the Hawaiian Homes Commission, was nominated April 4 and withdrew three days later.
Reporter Michael Levine contributed to this report.
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