Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Housing Hearing in December

The Housing Committee will be holding two informational briefings in December with government and non-government agencies to address housing issues and development needs.

Concerned groups should call Rep. Rida Cabanilla, chair of the House Housing Committee, at 586-6080 about being a part of the discussion.

Briefing with government agencies will be on Wednesday, Dec. 10 from 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. in Room 329.

Briefing with other groups will be on Tuesday, Dec. 16 from 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. in Room 325.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Share concerns with Rep Marcus Oshiro at community forum

Representative Marcus Oshiro will be holding a pre-session forum on Tuesday, December 9, 2008 from 6 - 8:30 p.m. at the Wahiawa District Park, Hale Koa Room.

Here's the agenda:

6:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. : Socialize/Refreshments
6:30 - 8:00 p.m.: District concerns and needs
8:00 - 8:30 p.m.: Final Questions and Answers
8:30 p.m.: Meeting Pau

Rep. Oshiro's district (39) includes Wahiawa, Whitmore Village and Poamoho.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Layout, links and tweets

I'm sure that you all have noticed the new layout to the Hawaii House Blog. In addition to the three column layout, we have created several websites to help keep the public better informed. At the top right corner of the blog, below the search bar, you will find four links that will connect you to press releases, news articles, community newsletters and a photo gallery. We will be updating these websites daily.

The House Blog Team hopes to utilize as many pertinent avenues through new media and social media next session to help create a more transparent and interactive legislature. As we have mentioned before, you can connect directly to Georgette and me in real time on Twitter to receive updates about what's going on at the state capitol. Our contact information can be found at the top left corner of the blog. See you on the "tweet" side!

Friday, November 21, 2008

House Committee Assignments

The House committee assignments for the 2009-2010 sessions have been finalized. Click here for PDF copy.

"Everybody's Business"

Speaker Calvin Say will appear tonight on "Everybody's Business", the PBSHawaii business show with Howard Dicus. The show airs at 7:30 p.m. Fridays. It was taped this morning, and Howard actually taped two shows back to back, the first to air tonight and the second to air next week. I'm not sure what the exact lineup is, but waiting in the wings were Senator Donna Kim, Chairwoman of the Senate Ways and Means committee, Carl Bonham, UH professor of economics and member of the Council on Revenues, and Jim Tollefson, President of the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce.

Speaker predicted that general fund tax revenues for fiscal year '09 will end up at -2.0%. The current projection by the Council on Revenues is -.5%. That's a difference of about $150 million. Did Carl Bonham agree? Tune in and find out!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Congressional Quarterly buys TrendTrack

The Congressional Quarterly is one of the most comprehensive resources for following federal legislation, and with their purchase of TrendTrack, CQ will also track legislation from all 50 states.

The Thicket has the story here. It includes other sites dedicated to tracking state legislation.

The Big Kahuna in Washington

I have a feeling that the majority of folks in Washington, D.C. don't even know what a Big Kahuna means, but reports today, click here, that Hawaii stands ready to become the "Big Kahuna" in Washington, delivered with a "Hawaiian Punch." They refer to the alignment of power shifts:

Senator Dan Inouye as the new chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Dan Akaka and Rep. Neil Abercrombie beginning to wield more legislative clout given their years of seniority, and Hawaii born Barack Obama, about to become the 44th President of the United States.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Update on Tax Collections

According to our House Finance wizards, the general fund tax collections for October 2008 have been released, and the report is not good. For the month of October, general funds collected were -9.5% down compared to October of last year, and -1.3% down, cumulatively, for the first four months (July, Aug, Sept, Oct) of this fiscal year, FY09.

The Council on Revenues' latest projection for FY09 is at -0.5%, and that is the projection that will be used by the administration and the legislature in working to balance our state budget. However, the Council is expected to meet again in January, and we'll see if the projection changes given the actual revenues for the year so far.

Here is a breakdown:
General excise taxes are at -3.2%
Corporate taxes are at -21.4%
Incomes taxes are at +1.1%
Other taxes (alcohol, tobacco, etc.) are at +8.1%

Also, Transient Accommodation Taxes (TAT), which do not go to the General Fund, are at -6.9%. The TAT goes to the counties and the Tourism Special Fund.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Committee assignments finalized

Click here for the final House Leadership and chair assignments of each of the House Committees.

Friday, November 14, 2008

More full timers, less attorneys

Those are a couple of trends over the past 40 years describing state legislators across the country. Here are some interesting statistics from NCSL.

*It used to be that attorneys made up the largest occupational group in state legislatures. That number has dropped from 25% to 15%. Full time legislators are now the largest occupational group at 16.4% and retired legislators make up another large sized group at 12%.

The Thicket explains why the number of full time legislators has increased:

The single largest reason for the steady increase in state legislators who serve without other sources of earned income is the increasing professionalization and time demands of legislative life that has occurred over the past quarter century. Legislative sessions have grown longer, and other time commitments to session-related activities have increased. The number of interim committee assignments has increased significantly. As the U.S. population has grown larger while the number of legislators has remained static, legislative districts have grown larger and more diverse, generating more demand for constituent service.

The bottom line is that as legislative service demand more time, lawmakers are finding it more difficult to pursue a career outside the legislature.

*The average age of a state legislator is 56. That number has increased over the years due to the increase of retired legislators. 10% are age 70 or older, 38% are 60 or older, 61% are between age 30 and 60, and only 1% are under age 30.

*As expected, the number of women serving has increased over the years and now stands at 22.6%. About 60% of women legislators are Democrats. For the first time in history, the New Hampshire Senate will have more women than men. However, the North Carolina Senate is now 100% male.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

House Committees and Chairs for 2009-2010

Chair: Clift Tsuji
Vice Chair: Jessica Wooley (ed. 11/14)

Consumer Protection and Commerce
Chair: Robert Herkes
Vice Chair: Glenn Wakai

Economic Revitalization, Business, and Military Affairs
Chair: Angus McKelvey
Vice Chair: Isaac Choy

Chair: Roy Takumi
Vice Chair: Lyla Berg

Energy and Environmental Protection
Chair: Hermina Morita
Vice Chair: Denny Coffman

Chair: Marcus Oshiro
Vice Chair: Marilyn Lee

Hawaiian Affairs
Chair: Mele Carroll
Vice Chair: Maile Shimabukuro

Chair: Ryan Yamane
Vice Chair: Scott Nishimoto

Higher Education
Chair: Jerry Chang
Vice Chair: Mark Nakashima

Chair: Rida Cabanilla
Vice Chair: Kyle Yamashita (ed. 11/14)

Human Services
Chair: John Mizuno
Vice Chair: Tom Brower

Chair: Jon Riki Karamatsu
Vice Chair: Ken Ito

Chair: Karl Rhoads
Vice Chair: Bob Nakasone

Legislative Management
Chair: James Tokioka
Vice Chair: Blake Oshiro

Public Safety
Chair: Faye Hanohano
Vice Chair: Henry Aquino

Tourism, Culture and International Affairs
Chair: Joey Manahan
Vice Chair: James Tokioka

Chair: Joe Souki
Vice Chair: Karen Awana

Water, Land and Ocean Resources
Chair: Ken Ito
Vice Chair: Sharon Har

House Leadership Team

Speaker of the House Calvin Say today announced the House of Representatives leadership team for the 25th Legislature. They are:

Speaker: Calvin K.Y. Say (District 20 – St. Louis Heights, Palolo Valley, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimuki)

Vice Speaker: Michael Magaoay (District 46 – Kaena Point, Schofield, Mokuleia, Waialua, Haleiwa, Waimea, Pupukea, Sunset, Kahuku)

Majority Leader: Blake Oshiro (District 33 – Aiea, Halawa Valley, Halawa Heights, Aiea Heights)

Majority Floor Leader: Cindy Evans (District 7 – North Kona, South Kohala)

Majority Whip: Pono Chong (District 49 – Maunawili, Olomana, Enchanted Lake, Kaneohe)

Speaker Calvin Say remains as Speaker of the House, a position he has held since 1998. Say was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1976, and has served on virtually every committee, including as Finance Chair from 1993 – 1998. He is President of Kotake Shokai, Ltd., an import business.

Vice Speaker Michael Magaoay was first elected to the House in 2000 and most recently served as Chair of the Legislative Management Committee. He was born and raised in Waialua and grew up in sugar plantation housing. He is a Senior Project Engineer by profession.

Majority Leader Blake Oshiro was first elected to the House in 2000 and most recently served as Majority Floor Leader and Vice Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. He graduated from the William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawaii, and is an associate attorney with the law firm Alston Hunt Floyd & Ing.

Majority Floor Leader Cindy Evans was first elected to the House in 2002 and most recently served as Chair of the Public Safety and Military Affairs Committee. She has a background in state government and is active in various West Hawaii organizations.

Majority Whip Pono Chong was first elected to the House in 2004 and most recently served as Vice Speaker. He has a background in state government, international affairs, and teaching.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Lawmaker Search Button On Leg Website

The Hawaii State Legislature Website recently added a new feature making it easier for residents to search the names of their district lawmakers.

Scroll down to the Find Legislators button at the bottom right of the page. Next, type in your street or road name to pull up the names and links to information on your representative and senator.

Helpful tips from the Hawaii State Legislature Website:

If your street name contains "East" or "West", you may need to try both "E" and "East" or "W" and "West" to find your legislators. Do NOT add the words street, road, avenue, highway, or any street abbreviations.

Upcoming guests on The Kukui Connection

Representative Marilyn Lee will talk with newly-elect senator, Michelle Kidani (District 17 - Mililani, Mililani Mauka, Waipi'o) on "The Kukui Connection" Sunday, Nov. 16 at 4 p.m. on Olelo, Channel 54.

Leah Marx from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) will join Rep. Lee the following week, Sunday, Nov. 23, to discuss the new interlock ignition law enacted last session (HB3377).

Conehead Aloha Wear?

Photo: Richard Borecca, Honolulu Star-Bulletin

Well, whatever they are, it's a nice way to flag and greet the new freshmen as they try to find their assigned parking within the dark caverns of the State Capitol parking lot. The Honolulu Star-Bulletin blog, Political Radar, blogs about it here.

Transition Ethics Rules

Governments at all levels around the country are going through the critical transition phase. Of note, President-elect Barack Obama has initiated a set of new ethics rules that apply to gifts and federal lobbyists during the presidential transition. The rules are:

*Federal Lobbyists cannot contribute financially to the transition.
*Federal lobbyists are prohibited from any lobbying during their work with the transition.
*If someone has lobbied in the last 12 months, they are prohibited from working in the fields of policy on which they lobbied.
*If someone becomes a lobbyist after working on the Transition, they are prohibited from lobbying the Administration for 12 months on matters on which they worked.
*A gift ban that is aggressive in reducing the influence of special interests.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Speaker Calvin Say to Retain Speakership

Here's the release that went out this afternoon:

Honolulu, Hawaii. The Hawaii House of Representatives today announced that Representative Calvin Say (District 20 – St. Louis Heights, Palolo Valley, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimuki) will remain as Speaker of the House for the Twenty-Fifth Legislature, which includes the 2009 and 2010 legislative sessions.

The Speaker is currently working with the House membership to select a leadership team and make committee assignments, which are expected to be announced later this week.

“We head into one of the most challenging legislative sessions that Hawaii has ever faced, and it’s extremely important that we come together, with the Senate, to focus on our first priorities: a balanced state budget and Hawaii’s economy,” said Speaker Calvin Say. “I am grateful for the opportunity to lead the House for the next two years. As soon as organization is completed, we will start work immediately. “

Speaker Say was first elected Speaker in 1998 for the start of the 1999 session. The upcoming 2009 session will be his 11th year as Speaker. He was first elected to the House in 1976.

Rep Marcus Oshiro to MC Wahiawa Veterans Day Parade

Rep. Marcus Oshiro will be the master of ceremonies for the Wahiawa Lion's 63rd annual Veterans Day Parade tomorrow. The parade, themed "Thanking our Veterans and Service Members", will start at Kaala Elementary School at 10:00 a.m. then proceed up California Avenue to Wahiawa District Park. Started in 1947, this perennial parade honors and supports U.S. veterans and current servicemen and women in Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan.

Mililani resident and Vietnam veteran Yoshiaki "Aki" Kakazu, 75, will serve as Parade Grand Marshal. The Honolulu Advertiser has a good story about Kakazu, including his benevolent efforts to assist our troops, and the parade's program and guest speakers.

In Honor of Veterans Day

The following was sent as a Veterans Day message by the Armed Services Mutual Benefit Association (ASMBA), courtesy of Lon Paresa, our House Assistant Sgt.-at-Arms.

"What is a Veteran?"

"They are men and women who, for many reasons, donned the uniform of our country to stand between freedom and tyranny; to take up the sword of justice in defense of the liberties we hold dear; to preserve peace and to calm the winds of war.

Your mothers and fathers, your grandparents, your aunts and uncles, your neighbors, the shop owners in your community, your teachers, your favorite athlete, a Hollywood star, and your political leaders... each one could be a veteran.

But as much as they may differ by gender, race, age, national origin, or profession, they share a common love for our great nation; a love great enough to put their very lives on the line, if need be, to guarantee the way of life we enjoy today, and to secure that way of life for tomorrow's generations.

The title “veteran” must be earned. It is a title endowed by a grateful nation on citizens whose shoulders were broad enough to carry the weight of our common defense.

It is a title that speaks of courage and sacrifice in the face of mortal danger.

It is a title that speaks of compassion and heartbreak in the wake of the terrible cost of war.

And it is a title that speaks of love of country, and of a belief in America’s goodness, and our strength.

In each of America’s struggles, heroes in uniform emerged to inspire and spur us on to victory. Our veterans’ steadfast resolve to stand and fight for the American way of life is a constant reminder that the righteousness of our destiny overarches the anguish of our losses.

America’s servicemen and women, who became our nation’s veterans when they set their uniforms aside and resumed their civilian lives, distinguished themselves through their willingness to risk life and limb in defense of the freedoms we all cherish.

Those who have served our nation in uniform are the best people our society has to offer. We owe them our full support, and our sincerest thanks."

"Informed Citizen" workshop tonight on Molokai

The legislature's Public Access Room continues its series of "Informed Citizen" workshops tonight on the island of Molokai.

Virginia Beck, Assistant Public Access Coordinator, will be in Kaunakakai to present information on the legislative process to Molokai residents. She has also made herself available for individual consultations by arrangement. Here is the key info:

Date: Monday, November 10, 2008
Time: 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Place: DHHL Conference Room, 600 Maunaloa Highway, Kaunakakai

For further information, contact the Public Access Room, toll free from Molokai at 1-800-468-4644, ext. 7-0478. You may also email them at:

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Al Gore's Climate for Change

Former VP Al Gore wrote this op-ed for the New York Times which appeared this morning, Sunday, Nov. 9th.  It's his five-part plan for America to achieve energy independence.  It's worth reading.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Show me the Money!

Well, only if you have unclaimed funds that the state Department of Budget and Finance is guarding. Unless Hawaii residents officially request what is theirs or the state can locate appropriate owners, dormant checking and savings accounts, un-cashed checks, stock certificates and safe deposit boxes will remain with the state forever.

That is why Rep. Blake Oshiro and other lawmakers began alerting their districts of all unclaimed property. In Aiea and Halawa, Rep. Oshiro's district, hundreds of claims have been made for unclaimed property since the start of the legislature's alert project in 2004. In October, notices were sent out to households informing them of the over 600 claims of $25 or more.

"I'm just trying to get this property back into the hands of my constituents – it's rightfully theirs in the first place, but they simply may not have been aware of the money sitting there," said Rep. Oshiro. "Since we're in a financially unpredictable time right now in Hawaii, this is one way we can try to help out."

Everyone can use a little or a lot of extra cash right now, so if you think you may have unclaimed property please visit: Or by phone: 586-1589. Or by snail mail: State of Hawaii, Department of Budget and Finance, Unclaimed Property Program, P.O. Box 150, Honolulu, HI 96810.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Meet the New House Freshmen

Left to Right: Representatives Denny Coffman, Chris Lee, Henry Aquino, Jessica Wooley, Mark Nakashima and Isaac Choy

Today, the new members of the House came to the Capitol for their first day of orientation. The coming weeks will be filled with hiring staff, moving into office space, and preparing for their first legislative session. Congratulations and Welcome to the House of Representatives!

Senate Leadership Changes

The State Senate announced leadership changes today. Here is the story from the Senate Majority Caucus, as well as in The Advertiser.

"Check Out Hunger" Campaign Underway

Photo: Left to right - Kraft Foods Hawaii Business Manager, Gerald Shintaku; KSSK's Sweetie Pacarro; Safeway District Manager, George Glukfeld; Hawaii Foodbank President, Dick Grimm; Rep. John Mizuno and Rep. Barbara Marumoto

Kraft Foods Hawaii and the Hawaii Foodbank are kicking off the 15th Annual Check-Out Hunger Campaign.

This year the campaign will be featured at Safeway stores statewide, Times Supermarkets, Tamura's Markets, Shima's Market, and Kokua Natural Foods Co-op. Last year the campaign generated over $140,000 to help feed Hawaii's hungry. This year's campaign started with the check presentation at the Kapahulu Safeway Store.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

House Majority now at 45 members

Starting today, the Hawaii House of Representatives membership is at 45 majority members and 6 minority members for a total of 51. Here is the breakdown ( 6 freshmen members in bold):

Hawaii Island

District 1 - North Kohala, South Kohala, Hamakua, North Hilo, South Hilo
Rep. Mark M. Nakashima (D)

District 2 - South Hilo, Waiakea Kai, Kaumana, Keaukaha
Rep. Jerry L. Chang (D)

District 3 - South Hilo, Panaewa, Puna, Keaau, Kurtistown
Rep. Clift Tsuji (D)

District 4 - Puna, Pahoa, Hawaiian Acres, Kalapana
Rep. Faye Hanohano (D)

District 5 - Puna, Kau, South Kona, North Kona
Rep. Rober Herkes (D)

District 6 - North Kona, Keauhou, Kailua-Kona, Honokohau
Rep. Denny Coffman (D)

District 7 - North Kona, South Kohala
Rep. Cindy Evans (D)


District 8 - Wailuku, Waihee, Waiehu, Puuohala, Waikapu
Rep. Joseph Souki (D)

District 9 - Kahului, Wailuku, Puunene, Paia, Sprecklesville
Rep. Bob Nakasone (D)

District 10 - Lahaina, Kaanapali, Kapalua, Maalaea, Kihei, North Kihei
Rep. Angus McKelvey (D)

District 11 - Makena, Wailea, Kihei
Rep. Joe Bertram III (D)

District 12 - Pukalani, Makawao, Olinda, Pulehu, Kula, Ulupalakua
Rep. Kyle Yamashita (D)

District 13 - Kahoolawe, Molokini, Lanai, Molokai, Keanae, Wailua, Nahiku, Hana
Rep. Mele Carroll (D)


District 14 - Hanalei, Anahola, Kealia, Kapaa, Waipouli
Rep. Hermina Morita (D)

District 15 - Lihue, Koloa
Rep. James Kunane Tokioka (D)

District 16 - Niihau, Lehua, Koloa, Waimea
Rep. Roland Sagum III (D)


District 17 - Kalama Valley, Queen's Gate, Hawaii Kai
Rep. Gene Ward (R)

District 18 - Hahaione, Kuliouou, Niu Valley, Hawaii Loa Ridge, Aina Haina, Wailupe, Kahala
Rep. Lyla Berg (D)

District 19 - Waialae Iki, Kalani Valley, Waialae Nui, Diamond Head, Kahala
Rep. Barbara Marumoto (D)

District 20 - St. Louis Heights, Palolo Valley, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimuki
Rep. Calvin Say (D)

District 21 - Kaimuki, Kapahulu, Waikiki, Ala Wai, Diamond Head
Rep. Scott Nishimoto (D)

District 22 - Moiliili, McCully, Kaimuki
Rep. Scott Saiki (D)

District 23 - Waikiki, Ala Moana
Rep. Tom Brower (D)

District 24 - Manoa, Manoa Valley, University
Rep. Isaac W. Choy (D)

District 25 - Tantalus, Makiki, McCully
Rep. Della Au Belatti (D)

District 26 - Dowsett Highlands, Pacific Heights, Pauoa, Punchbowl
Rep. Sylvia Luke (D)

District 27 - Nuuanu, Puunui, Liliha, Alewa Heights
Rep. Corinne Ching (R)

District 28 - Kakaako, Iwilei
Rep. Karl Rhoads (D)

District 29 - Sand Island, Mokauea, Kalihi Kai, Kapalama
Rep. Joey Manahan (D)

District 30 - Kamehameha Heights, Kalihi Valley, Fort Shafter
Rep. John Mizuno (D)

District 31 - Moanalua Valley, Moanalua, Salt Lake
Rep. Glenn Wakai (D)

District 32 - Lower Pearlridge, Aiea, Halawa, Hickam, Pearl Harbor, Moanalua Gardens
Rep. Lynn Finnegan (R)

District 33 - Aiea, Halawa Valley, Halawa Heights, Aiea Heights
Rep. Blake Oshiro (D)

District 34 - Newtown, Waiau, Pearl City, Waimalu
Rep. K. Mark Takai (D)

District 35 - Pearl City, Waipahu
Rep. Henry Aquino (D)

District 36 - Pearl City, Momilani, Pacific Palisades, Manana
Rep. Roy Takumi (D)

District 37 - Waipahu, Mililani
Rep. Ryan Yamane (D)

District 38 - Mililani, Mililani Mauka
Rep. Marilyn Lee (D)

District 39 - Wahiawa, Whitmore Village, Launani Valley
Rep. Marcus Oshiro (D)

District 40 - Royal Kunia, Makakilo, Kapolei, Kalaeloa
Rep. Sharon Har (D)

District 41 - Waipahu, Village Park, Waikele
Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu (D)

District 42 - Waipahu, Honouliuli, West Loch, Ewa
Rep. Rida Cabanilla (D)

District 43 - Ewa Beach, Iroquois Point, Puuloa
Rep. Kymberly Pine (R)

District 44 - Honokai Hale, Nanakuli, Lualualei
Rep. Karen Awana (D)

District 45 - Waianae, Makaha, Makua
Rep. Maile Shimabukuro (D)

District 46 - Kaena Point, Schofield, Mokuleia, Waialua, Haleiwa, Waimea, Pupukea, Sunset, Kahuku
Rep. Michael Magaoay (D)

District 47 - Laie, Hauula, Punaluu, Kahana, Kaaawa, Waikane, Kahaluu, Ahuimanu, Kaneohe
Rep. Jessica Wooley (D)

District 48 - Heeia, Haiku Valley, Kapunahala, Kaneohe
Rep. Ken Ito (D)

District 49 - Maunawili, Olomana, Enchanted Lake, Kaneohe
Rep. Pono Chong (D)

District 50 - Kaneohe Bay, Kailua
Rep. Cynthia Thielen (R)

District 51 - Lanikai, Waimanalo
Rep. Chris Lee (D)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Rep Herkes outlines Vog report recommendations

The Hawaii Tribune Herald published this story Sunday outlining the recommendations of the House Special Committee on Vog Effects. The headline zeroes in on the recommendation for Hawaii County to provide property tax relief for farmers whose crops have been damaged by vog.

Chair Herkes, however, believe the most urgent need is for a 24-7 central point of contact:

"There needs to be a clearinghouse, open 24-7, staffed by people who are here and can talk about health effects, air conditioning, water filtering and agricultural effects. That just isn't being provided," said Herkes (D-Puna, Ka'u, Kona). "Information is just being passed anecdotally from group to group."

The Department of Health should retrofit hospitals with vog filters, and health insurance companies should cover the cost of air filters for qualified individuals. The DOH should also develop a more efficient system for collecting health data so the effects of vog can be determined, the report says.

The full report is available on the capitol website:

Free Legislative Workshops on Kauai

The Public Access Room will be on Kauai for a week, starting Wednesday, November 5, 2008, to conduct free legislative workshops for Kauai citizens. If you are interested in politics and want to better understand the legislative process, this workshop is for you. You will also learn how to get involved with the legislature, how to write effective testimony, and how to make sure your voice is heard, without having to leave Kauai. Here's the schedule:

Wednesday, November 5, 2008, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m., Princeville Public Library
Thursday, November 6, 2008, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m., Hanapepe Public Library
Saturday, November 8, 2008, 3:30 - 5:00 p.m., Koloa Public Library
Monday, November 10, 2008, 6:30 - 8:00 p.m., Kapaa Public Library
Wednesday, November 12, 2008, 6:30 - 8:00 p.m., Lihue Neighborhood Center

The workshops will be hosted by former Kauai resident Suzanne Marinelli, who is the Legislature's Public Access Coordinator for the Public Access Room (PAR), a division of the state's non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau.