Watching and reporting about Hawaii politics and government.

4 p.m. Where’s Neil?

Here’s Neil on Saturday:

Hilo Veterans Day Parade, 9-11 a.m.

3:45 p.m. Where’s APEC Stuff?

Here’s APEC stuff on Saturday:

Occupy Honolulu Rally and March to Capitol, Thomas Square, 11 a.m.

Maui Supporters of Occupy Wall Street, Queen Kaahumanu shopping center sign waving, Kahului, 4-6 p.m.

FACE Equity Summit on APEC, UH Manoa Campus Center, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

3:35 p.m. DLNR ‘Listening Sessions’ On Big Isle

Sens. Donovan Dela Cruz and Malama Solomon will join DLNR’s William Aila, Guy Kaulukukui and Bill Tam for “listening sessions” at 5 p.m. today at Waiakea High School Cafeteria in Hilo, Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at Waimea Middle Public Conversion Charter School in Kamuela and 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Konawaena High School Cafeteria in Kealakekua.

Click here for more.

2:50 p.m. Hawaii GOP To Pick New Chair

Members of the Hawaii Republican Party will meet at their Kapiolani Boulevard headquarters Saturday to select a permanent chair.

Jonah Kaauwai resigned under pressure in late September, and Beth Fukumoto has held the position since then on an interim basis. But she doesn’t want the permanent job.

Fukumoto told Civil Beat that her party is likely to vote for David Chang, who won’t assume the job until the end of November. That’s because he’s with the Army National Guard, which has been activated for APEC.

Chang and Fukumoto ran unsuccessfully for the state House in 2010, and Fukumoto is weighing another run in her Mililani district.

1:55 p.m. No Noynoy At Legislature

The Hawaii Legislature had hoped to have President Benigno Aquino of the Philippines address a joint session on Nov. 14, the day after the APEC summit concludes.

But, plans fell through, say spokespersons for the House and Senate.

Aquino — nicknamed “Noynoy” — will lead the Philippine delegation at the APEC Leaders’ Week.

11 a.m. Hawaii House Reps Trust In God

Mazie Hirono and Colleen Hanabusa — both Buddhists — were among the 396 members of the U.S. House of Representatives to vote this week reaffirming “In God We Trust” as the official motto of the United States.

The resolution calls for support and encouragement of the public display of the motto in all public buildings, public schools and other government institutions.

Here’s an excerpt from a New York Times article on the resolution:

The resolution, smaller than a law but bigger than a wish, is designed to clear up any confusion over the motto’s official status, said Representative J. Randy Forbes, Republican of Virginia and the measure’s sponsor. …

“This is something I have paid a lot of attention to over the years,” Mr. Forbes said, pointing to discussions of the motto, which officially became that of the nation in 1956, throughout the last century in Congress. “If you look at the debates, they clarified that the motto had spiritual and psychological value.”

Only nine representatives voted “no” on the resolution, eight of them Democrats. One of them was Hank Johnson of Georgia, who is also a Buddhist.

10:30 a.m. New Deputy Chief Of Staff For Gov

The Abercrombie administration will announce a new deputy chief of staff on Monday.

The hire is described as an “interesting” pick who possesses strong legislative experience — something that would benefit the governor and enactment of his “New Day” agenda.

Amy Asselbaye and Andrew Aoki, the governor’s former chief of staff and her deputy, resigned in early October.

Bruce Coppa is the new chief of staff.

9 a.m. APEC News You Can Use

UPDATE The U.S. Congress has passed the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Business Travel Cards Act of 2011 and sent it to the president for his signature.

Press release excerpt:

The bill would enable American business and government travelers that have been screened, are not security risks and have an APEC card to have their visa requests reviewed faster, use the same customs lanes as air crews at airports, and take multiple trips to the 21 APEC countries for three years without getting a new visa each time.

Pacific Business News has this item on how tickets to an APEC CEO summit start at $4,000.

• The San Francisco Chronicle has this article about all the heavy security for APEC.

Hawaii News Now has an interview with Neil Abercrombie regarding APEC.

KITV has this report on differing views on APEC at UH Manoa, and this report about how HPD is worried about protests and traffic.

• Finally, Hawaii Public Radio has been running a series of profiles of APEC member economies, such as this one on South Korea.

For more APEC info, please visit Civil Beat’s APEC beat, our detailed APEC topic page and our popular APEC Survival Guide.

Hooser Decides Against CD2 Bid

DC808 has this post about former state Sen. Gary Hooser, who has decided not to run for the U.S. Congress after months of an exploratory effort.

Forum: APEC And Climate Change

A “Hawaii Emerging Leaders Program 2011 APEC Conference,” hosted by state Rep. Karen Awana and Pacific Forum CSIS, runs all day at the Capitol Auditorium.

“With Hawaii hosting APEC this year, it’s a great time for us to hold a conference like this,” Awana said in a press release. “Students will have the opportunity to get involved with developing public policy agendas and international strategies in relation to how global warming affects these economies.”

Briefing:

House Labor and Public Employment is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m. at the Capitol.

Here’s why:

The purpose of this informational briefing is to provide the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations an opportunity to discuss the status of the Boiler & Elevator Inspection Branch of the Occupational Safety and Health Division, including the challenges in maintaining current inspections for both elevators and boilers throughout the state. Also, recently the Unemployment Trust Fund has achieved a positive balance after requiring loans from the federal government in accordance with Title XII of the Social Security Act. The department will have an opportunity to update the committee on the status of the Unemployment Trust Fund and projections moving into the new calendar year for both the fund and the Contribution Rate Schedule.

Pot ‘Minister’ Gets 30 Days

Check out the latest in Neighbor Island government-related news:

Kula woman arrested in alleged Ponzi scheme

Protests, bones stall Wailua projects

Hawaii County pot “minister” gets 30 days

Power outage knocks out Central Maui water wells

Redistricting plan riles Kohala, Puna residents

Council to consider Pulelehua development

Odor shuts down Lihue airport

Mayor holds budget hearing in Lahaina


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