Donors to Mayor Kirk Caldwell‘s transition committee which raised $400,000 for an inauguration party and to help install him in office had significant business interests with the city, according to a list of the donors released Wednesday by the Honolulu Ethics Commission.
Some donors, who were implicated in an ethics investigation of the committee, also included registered lobbyists and cabinet members Carolee Kubo and Chris Takashige.
An Oct. 18 Ethics Commission opinion cleared Caldwell of any wrongdoing as it relates to the city’s gift policy, saying he couldn’t have known who was donating to his transition committee.
But that same opinion also called for an overhaul of the ethics code to provide safeguards related to inaugural transition committees to prevent any appearances of impropriety in the future.
Civil Beat had asked for the names of 25 donors the commission found had given $127,000 that was questionable under city ethics law.
Initially, Ethics Commission Executive Director Chuck Totto withheld the names because he was unclear about whether it was public information. On Wednesday, the commission voted to release the list of donors.
In all, there were 102 donors to the transition committee, and names on the list include some of the most well-known and influential individuals and businesses in Hawaii. Some unions also gave money to the transition team
Here’s a list of the 25 donors the Ethics Commission pointed out in its opinion: