The trial to determine Rep. Calvin Say’s residency and eligibility to represent District 20 in the Legislature is being pushed back because of recent updates to the long-drawn-out lawsuit.

Now, Say likely won’t have to appear in court and prove he lives in the district he represents until well after the August primary election. The longtime legislator faces two contenders this year: Republican Julia Allen and Green Party member Keiko Bonk.

Say, the former speaker of the house, represents the district that includes Palolo, Kaimuki and St. Louis Heights. But residents say he hasn’t lived in the area for years and that the house he claims he lives in is vacant. Instead, he has long lived in Pacific Heights with his wife and two children, they contend.

Calvin Say at Hearing

Calvin Say at a hearing in 2010.

Civil Beat

A group of six registered voters living in District 20 is challenging Say’s residency in a lawsuit that was initially filed in 2012. At first, Circuit Judge Karen Nakasone dismissed the case, saying she didn’t have jurisdiction over the issue.

But an appeals court disagreed in an opinion issued this April, ordering the case back to Circuit Court.

Say was originally set to appear in court on August 8, a day before the primary.

But new motions that have been filed by parties on both sides mean that dates for all hearings have been changed, according to Lance Collins, the attorney representing the six plaintiffs.

For one, the House of Representatives now wants to intervene in the case with the help of the Attorney General — an effort the plaintiffs are seeking to challenge. The plaintiffs’ motion to disqualify the Attorney General from representing the House of Representatives is being heard on the original trial date: August 8.

The court will subsequently hear the House’s motion to intervene on August 29, after which it will hear Say’s motions to dismiss the case on September 18. The new trial date will be assigned after that hearing.

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