Watching and reporting about Hawaii politics and government.
5:08 p.m. Saturday Gov’t Activity
• 40 Years of OSHA at Honolulu Community College
Approximately 800 HCC trade apprentices will experience job-related safety demonstrations to showcase safety. It begins at 9 a.m. and features labor director Dwight Takamine, Captain Brian Osgood from Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard, OSHA Regional Administrator Ken Atha and HCC Chancellor Michael T. Rota.
• Get Ready Ewa Beach Fair
As part of National Preparedness Month, Leeward residents are invited to attend a disaster preparedness fair focused on hurricanes and tsunamis. Join Kymberly Pine and Photonworks (they have a battery-back up PV system) at Ewa Makai Middle School beginning at 9 a.m.
4:32 p.m. Asian-Pacific Caucus Pleased with Obama Meeting
Members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus met with President Obama today in Washington.
The meeting took place in the Cabinet Room of the White House and was the first official meeting between the caucus and the president.
Caucus member Mazie Hirono had this to say in a press statement following the meeting:
When we’re talking about improving our schools and helping our children succeed, we need to talk to as many different stakeholders as possible. Asian American and Pacific Islander American students are a broad and diverse group, including Native Hawaiians, Filipinos, Micronesians, Samoans, and many others. We need disaggregated data to determine disparities so we can close achievement gaps. I asked the President to issue an executive order for all agencies to collect, report, and use disaggregated data to inform policy and program decisions. I know that the President, having grown up in Hawaii’s multicultural environment, is sensitive to issues affecting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. I appreciate the fact that he took the time to sit down with the leadership of CAPAC to discuss some of our concerns.
3:11 p.m. Akaka’s National Estuaries Day
The U.S. Senate has approved a resolution declaring this Saturday (Sept. 24) National Estuaries Day.
The resolution was co-sponsored by Dan Akaka, who said in a statement:
Our estuaries and coastal areas provide critical habitat along with recreation, tourism, and business opportunities. In Hawaii, we believe strongly in malama aina and malama kai — caring for the land and caring for the ocean – and healthy estuaries are key to both.
Let’s all celebrate National Estuaries Day!
2:39 p.m. Hanabusa, Hirono Vote ‘No’ on GOP’s EPA Bill
Colleen Hanabusa and Mazie Hirono were in the minority on a 249-169 vote today that would “require an analysis of recent EPA regulations and delay rules related to mercury and air quality until that analysis is complete,” according to a news report.
The vote — as often is the case in this Congress — was largely along party lines.
8:15 a.m. Hawaii Reps Vote Against GOP Spending Bill
Colleen Hanabusa and Mazie Hirono were among the 203 U.S. representatives to vote against a House Majority bill that temporarily extends the federal budget.
But the bill passed late last night with 219 votes, largely along party lines.
Hirono said this in a statement after the vote:
Unfortunately, this legislation again puts jobs on the butcher block and then goes a step further to cut an additional clean energy initiative — one which enabled the financing necessary for the Kahuku wind project that now powers 7,700 Oahu homes with clean energy.
Today, however, the U.S. Senate killed the bill. Democrats objected to the level of FEMA funding and cuts to an energy program.
Dan Akaka and Dan Inouye were in the majority of the 59-36 vote to reject the House legislation.
The question now is whether a government shutdown looms.
The Gov’t Wants Your Drugs
The Attorney General, Narcotics Enforcement Division and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration encourage folks to bring in expired or unused prescription medications at various collection points, beginning tomorrow.
“This service is free and anonymous — no questions asked,” according to a press release. “Tablets, capsules, and all other solid dosage forms will be accepted.”
“Unused or expired prescription drugs pose serious health and safety risks for those in our state,” said David Louie.
The lieutenant governor — who is acting governor until Neil Abercrombie jets in from Paris over the weekend — has emailed to subscribers an item titled “Why China Matters to Hawaii.”
Media from Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou visited Hawaii this summer and heard the message that Hawaii is a great place to visit and do business. They saw our world class observatories on Mauna Kea, visited cutting-edge health sciences and energy projects, and enjoyed our beautiful environment and warm hospitality.
As a result, millions of people have seen positive stories about Hawaii, in newspapers, on television and on computers throughout China.
With APEC coming up, interest in Hawaii has never been greater, and so we are working hard to build the long-term relationships that will strengthen our economy for the next generation.
Beijing at the Capitol
Suzanne Chun Oakland invites everyone to view a photo exhibit called “The 100th Anniversary of the Revolution of 1911 Great Changes in the Capital — Beijing.”
The exhibit, co-sponsored by the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Hawaii Foundation and in cooperation with the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii, is on display at the Capitol’s chamber level through Sept. 30.
Tthe exhibit will later be transferred to the Hawaii Heritage Center for permanent display.
Not pau yet, but close.
The 2011 Reapportionment Commission meets this afternoon at the Capitol.
The agenda includes input from advisory councils and review of district maps.