Thursday, June 30, 2011

Cultural Gems

Submitted by the Office of Rep. Tom Brower:

During the interim, Rep. Brower has been keeping busy with site visits to learn about our cultural gems across the island, which he often views from the perspective of Tourism Chair.

A. APEC Sites

Today, he joined the House International Affairs committee to visit the Honolulu International Airport, East-West Center and the Hawaii Convention Center and assess their "APEC readiness.

Of particular importance were the airport upgrades with moving walkways, healthier food and beverage concessions, and 1800-stall parking structure, part of the $2.3 billion modernization program approved in 2006 to improve passenger service and increase security and operational efficiencies.

(From Left): SMG General Manager Joe Davis with Reps. Evans, Brower, Awana and McKelvey. The Hawai‘i Convention Center has received its 13th consecutive Prime Site Award from Facilities & Destinations magazine.

B. Legacy Lands

This interim, Rep. Brower has joined Senate Vice-Chair of Hawaiian Affairs, Pohai Ryan, to visit Fong Plantation (Kaneohe), Sunset Ranch, Turtle Bay, and Hawaii Agricultural Research Station (Waipahu).

The Dept. of Land and Natural Resources "Legacy Land Conservation Program" (LLCP) provides grants to local organizations and agencies seeking to purchase and protect lands having these unique and rare valuable resources.

The 700-acre Fong Plantation, which is filled with tropical fruit, palms, ferns, and fragrant flowers, originally belonged to King Lunalilo. Former Senator Hiram L. Fong, who purchased it in 1950, is well-known for being the first Asian American presidential candidate (1964).

(From Left): Reps. Hashem and Brower, Hiram Fong Jr., Sen. Ryan and guest at the Plantation.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Act 48 - What's it all about?

The following is provided by the Office of Rep. Robert Herkes, Chair, House Committee on Consumer Protection & Commerce

Act 48 (SB 651) – Executive Summary

Act 48 (SB 651) provides comprehensive amendments to Hawaii's foreclosure processes that provide greater protection and fairness for owner-occupants of homes.

The following summarizes the major provisions concerning mortgage foreclosures.

Temporary Mortgage Foreclosure Dispute Resolution Program

· A 3-year Mortgage Foreclosure Dispute Resolution Program will be in operation no later than October 1, 2011, for nonjudicial foreclosures of residential real property occupied by mortgagors who have been owner-occupants for at least 200 days immediately before the initiation of a foreclosure proceeding.

· The purpose of the program is to reach an agreement that avoids foreclosure or mitigates damages in cases where foreclosure is unavoidable. The program is not intended to provide a bail-out for owner-occupants or prevent all foreclosures.

· If an owner-occupant elects to participate in the Program, the foreclosing mortgagee must participate.

· Under the program, the owner-occupant and mortgagee, or their representatives, must meet in at least one dispute resolution session with a neutral.

· Initial funding for the Program will be provided from the Compliance Resolution Special Fund which amounts will be reimbursed from various filing fees. The Program will then be sustained by continuous funding from these filing fees.

· The DCCA must report to the Legislature prior to the 2012 and 2013 Regular Sessions on the operations and outcomes of the Program.

· Owner-occupants who elect to participate in the Program cannot also convert their nonjudical foreclosure to a judicial foreclosure.

· The Program will sunset on September 30, 2014.

· More information is available on the DCCA website at:

Temporary Conversion Option from Nonjudicial to Judicial Foreclosure

· Until December 31, 2012, there is a stream-lined procedure for an owner-occupant of a residential property subject to nonjudicial foreclosure to convert to a judicial foreclosure except:

o In cases of foreclosures of association liens for condominiums; and

o If the mortgagor has elected to participate in the Mortgage Foreclosure Dispute Resolution Program.

· A phase-in period until August 15, 2011, will allow owner-occupants currently undergoing a nonjudicial foreclosure to convert to a judicial foreclosure provided that the nonjudicial foreclosure has not been completed.

Temporary Moratorium on Certain Nonjudicial Foreclosures

A moratorium on new nonjudicial foreclosures under the old nonjudicial process (Chapter 667 Part I) will be in effect until July 1, 2012.

Permanent Amendments to the Nonjudical Foreclosure Process

· Personal service of a nonjudicial mortgage foreclosure notice is required.

· The public sale of foreclosed properties may only take place at certain state facilities that are not under the administration of the Judiciary.

· Deficiency judgments are prohibited for most nonjudicial foreclosures.

· Egregious conduct by a foreclosing mortgagee is prohibited. Such conduct includes:

o Completing a nonjudicial foreclosure during the pendency of a bona fide short sale where the offer meets minimum price criteria and escrow is opened and closed during a specified time frame surrounding the noticed public sale;

o Holding a public sale on a date or time or in a place not properly noticed;

o Specifying a fictitious place for the public sale; and

o Completing nonjudicial foreclosure proceedings during loan modification negotiations with the mortgagor or while the mortgagor is being evaluated for entry into a federal loan modification program.

· Nonjudicial foreclosures by junior lienholders will be barred or suspended during the pendency of a nonjudicial foreclosure by a mortgagee in certain circumstances.

Tighter Regulation of Mortgage Servicers

· Mortgage foreclosure actions taken by an unlicensed nonexempt mortgage servicer will be void.

· Starting July 1, 2012, certain large mortgage servicers must maintain an office in Hawaii staffed by at least one agent to address consumer inquiries or complaints and to accept service of process. Mortgage servicers may comply with this requirement by contracting with local entities.

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Veto List 2011

Governor Abercrombie released a list of 23 bills that he intends to veto. The veto deadline is July 12, 2011. On the list are:

SB23 Relating to Native Hawaiians (Aha Kiole Advisory Council)

SB1493 Relating to Light Pollution (Requires fully shielded outdoor light fixtures by July 1, 2013)

SB1417 Relating to the State Rehabilitation Council (Minimum number of members for quorum)

SB40 Relating to Pseudoephedrine (Tracking system for sale of products that contain pseudoephdrine)

HB56 Relating to Child Visitation (Grandparent visitation)

SB44 Relating to Public Safety (Inmate rehabilitation and re-entry)

HB318 Relating to Vog (Interagency task force)

SB217 Relating to Limitation of Actions (Statute of limitations, sexual offenses against minors)

HB545 Relating to Voter Registration (Online Voter Registration)

HB1405 Relating to Planning (Greenways and trails)

HB667 Relating to Food Safety (Food safety and security program within DOA)

SB1511 Relating to Aquaculture (Increases maximum lease terms)

HB680 Relating to Kakaako (Kakaako Makai Community Planning Advisory Council, Repeal)

HB1520 Relating to Renewable Energy (PUC, On-bill financing)

HB1134 Relating to Prepaid Health Care Repeals Part V of Hawaii Prepaid Health Care Act and Act 99 SLH 1994)

HB1164 Relating to Public Lands (Allows sale of Sand Island parcels to leaseholders)

HB1230 Relating to Building Permits (Exempts construction for certain non-residential structures)

HB1505 Relating to State Facilities (State renovation public-private partnership)

SB49 Relating to Correctional Facilities (Deaths, reporting requirements)

Friday, June 24, 2011

HSAC Legislators of the Year

Congratulations to Rep. Marcus Oshiro and Senate President Shan Tsutsui for both being named"Legislator of the Year" by the Hawaii State Association of Counties (HSAC).

The awards were presented yesterday at the Grand Wailea Resort on Maui where HSAC held their annual meeting for 2011.

Rep. Oshiro shares a laugh with Maui County Council Chair Danny Mateo after presenting "omiyage" from Oahu - plastic bags. The Maui County Council voted to ban plastic bags last year, effective January 2011, and they have now become a rarity on Maui. Guess it's working!

Update - Jordan's Journal with Rep. Sharon Har

Olelo has added two more viewing dates for the "Jordan's Journal" episode with guest Rep. Sharon Har. The series is hosted/produced by Rep. Jo Jordan. One is coming up this weekend - Sunday, June 26th at 3:00 p.m. Olelo Ch. 54. The other repeat date is Tuesday, June 28th at 10:30 p.m.

Dont' forget, Rep. Har will hold a Transportation Issues community meeting in Kapolei next Thursday. June 30th, Kapolei High School Cafeteria, 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Traffic is a serious issue for residents in West Oahu. Come to the meeting to hear the latest on transportation developments and voice your concerns.

Wahiawa Post-Session Forum with Rep. Marcus Oshiro, June 28

Marcus Oshiro Post-Session Forum

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Kauai: Mark Calendar for Waimea Town Meeting, June 29

WHAT: State Representative Dee Morikawa will host a Town Meeting for the Waimea community to report on the highlights of the 2011 legislative session and updates on key projects. Area residents are invited to attend.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011
6:00 p.m.

WHERE: Waimea Neighborhood Center
4556 Makeke Road

WHY: In addition to the legislative highlights and capital improvement projects slated for the district, Rep. Morikawa will lead a discussion on the following:

Waimea Valley Ditch System, Waimea Levee, Multi-use Path (Kekaha to Waimea) proposal, potential for National Byways Designation, Waimea Story Boards and Music in the Park, Kokee issues, Waimea High School status.

HSAC Legislative Package 2011

The Hawaii State Association of Counties (HSAC) is meeting on Maui today and tomorrow. We thought it would be a good time to check on the HSAC legislative package for 2011 and see how those bills fared this year. HSAC submitted a package of proposals to the 2011 legislature containing six House bills, two House resolutions, six Senate bills, and one Senate resolution. Click to view the HSAC bills here.

One bill, SB1025, CD1 passed the legislature and has been enrolled to the Governor. Next Monday, June 27th, the Governor is scheduled to release his notice of intention to veto certain bills. He then has 10 days to either sign or veto a bill; if he does nothing, the bill becomes law without his signature.

SB1025, introduced by Senator Tsutsui by request, does two major things: 1) It adds the assault of firefighters and water safety officers to the offense of assault in the second degree. 2) It creates a class B felony for unauthorized entry in a dwelling based on the occupants age and incapacity.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Hanafuda Renaissance

Rep. Marilyn Lee with guests June and Bob Asato

Kukui Connection airs on Olelo, Ch. 54 at 4:00 p.m. Sundays. This episode will air on June 26th, and repeats on July 3rd and July 10th.

On the next episode of Kukui Connection, the public affairs series hosted by Rep. Marilyn Lee, Rep. Lee talks with Mililani residents June and Bob Asato on the renaissance of the ancient Japanese card game, Hanafuda. The Asato's are part of a volunteer group who educate and spread the word about the joys and benefits of playing Hanafuda. The group has also produced a new deck version of Hanafuda cards called Hanafuda Hawaii Style.

Learn more about the cards and where to get them on the Hanafuda Hawaii Style website.

Hanafuda literally means "flower cards." Many different games may be played with the cards, including several versions of solitaire. The history of the cards dates back to the early 1600's (Edo Period) and the artwork on the cards contains symbolism relating to the culture, calendar and natural history of Japan.

The Asato's are so passionate about Hanafuda because they see the cards as a way to bring generations together in playing this game of luck and skill. They also see it as a beneficial and enjoyable past-time for the elderly population.

Interestingly, the first company to mass produce Hanafuda cards is Nintendo.

Upcoming is a Hanafuda Tournament on Saturday, July 23, 2011 at Mililani Hongwanji. The proceeds of the tournament will benefit Mililani Project Grad 2012. Find out more on the Hanafuda Hawaii Style website.

Social Media Revolution 2011

I'll be heading to Maui on Thursday to participate on a panel at the Hawaii State Association of Counties. The panel is on social media and open government. The panel discussion will be moderated by Lincoln Ashida, County of Hawaii, and participants include NEENZ Faleafine, who spearheaded the social media project for the Abercrombie campaign for Governor; Francis Choe, Hawaii Senate; Nikki Love, Common Cause Hawaii; Cheryl Kakazu Park, Office of Information Practices; and myself. Prior to the panel discussion, Peter Kai from Kaiscapes will be giving an overview presentation on the social media revolution, and Peter shares this updated video on the subject --pretty incredible statistics. If you haven't seen this lately, check it out.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Hilo center approved to raise capital for nursing facility

Rep. Jerry Chang assisted in this effort to establish the Hawaiian Islands Regional Center as a government approved vehicle for foreign investment capital. For its first project, the center plans to raise $18.5 million to invest in a 100-bed skilled nursing facility in Hilo.

The Hilo facility will serve the senior community and their families. It will be operated by Rengency Pacific, which manages over 50 retirement, assisted living and skilled nursing communities throughout the western United States.

Read the full press release here:

HIRC Press Release 6 20 11

Friday, June 17, 2011

Rep. Sharon Har Next on "Jordan's Journal"

View on Olelo Community Media, Channel 54 (Views)

6/18/11 Saturday - 5:00 p.m.
6/19/11 Sunday - 2:00 p.m.
6/20/11 Monday - 1:00 p.m.
6/21/11 Tuesday - 8:30 p.m.

Rep. Sharon Har (District 40 - Royal Kunia, Makakilo, Kapolei, Kalaeloa) will be Rep. Jo Jordan's guest on the next episode of "Jordan's Journal."

Har, a land use attorney, is Vice Chair of the House Committee on Water, Land & Ocean Resources. She talks about her decision to run for office, the growth of the "Second City", and pressing issues of the district such as traffic and building new roads.

Jordan (District 45 - Waianae, Makaha, Makua) and Har discuss areas that their two communities have in common such as the future of the landfill, and the promising developments in digital media.

Coming Up: Community meeting on Traffic and Transportation Issues

Rep. Har will hold a Kapolei area community meeting on Thursday, June 30, 2011 at Kapolei High School Cafeteria, 7:00 t0 8:30 p.m. More details to follow.

Update on "Jordan's Journal" with Rep. Marcus Oshiro

This show repeats this weekend:

6/18/11 Saturday - 4:30 p.m.
6/19/11 Sunday - 10:30 a.m.

Lessons from the Rep. Anthony Weiner case

In following the disastrous fall of U.S. Congressman Anthony Weiner, I heard two sets of steps of PR advice worth saving:

3 critical steps:

1. Tell it all.
2. Tell it early.
3. Tell it yourself.

4 steps to redemption:

1. Admit wrongdoing, take responsibility.
2. Apologize to those hurt by your action.
3. Vanish.
4. Return with a new focus.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

SB754/Act 105 Suspension of GET exemptions

Governor Abercrombie signed into law SB754 as Act 105.

What the bill does: The bill suspends for two years (from July 1, 2011 to June 30, 2013) the general excise and use tax exemptions for certain persons and business activities. During the two-year suspension period, the formerly exempt persons and business activities will be subject to the four per cent general excise or use tax rate (but not the 0.5 per cent surcharge in Honolulu for the rail project).

Keep in mind:

(1) The bill is the major revenue generator for resolving the $1.3 billion general fund shortfall over the next fiscal biennium that the Legislature confronted.

SB 754 generates, for the general fund, $173.2 million in fiscal year 2011-12 and $220.3 million in fiscal year 2012-13. The general funds, along with other revenue enhancements/diversions and $618.0 million in budget cuts, are necessary to close the budget gap.

2) The bill is supported by the Governor and part of the Administration's financial plan.

3) The bill promotes fairness.

Suspending the exemptions eliminates a preference for the formerly exempt persons that other businesses do not have. Many businesses, such as restaurants, supermarkets, accounting firms, etc., do not enjoy general excise tax exemptions. In effect, those businesses must make up for the tax revenues foregone through the exemptions.

This unfairness would have worsened if the general excise tax rate had been increased without suspending the exemptions. The businesses without exemptions would have had to pay more taxes while the exempt ones would still pay $0.

A new Tax Review Commission is past due to convene and study the state tax system, as required by the Constitution. Review of and recommendation on SB 754 would be most appropriate for the Commission.

4) The bill is the major alternative to an increase of the general excise tax rate.

The House position was that a general excise tax rate increase would have raised the cost of doing business and cost of consumer products and services much more than would have occurred under SB 754. Raising the cost of business and cost to consumers would have negatively impacted the economic recovery and standard of living. Moreover, a general excise tax increase would have been regressive (although this effect could have been mitigated with credits for low-income persons).

Most of the general public mistakenly assumes that a one per cent general excise tax rate increase will require them to pay just one cent more on every dollar of purchase. This mistaken assumption ignores the pyramiding effect of a rate increase, an effect in which the tax at previous transaction levels is hidden in the price of the final product or service.

5) The bill is consistent with the way the general excise tax is supposed to work.

Opponents of SB 754 argue that the bill will force them to pass-on the newly imposed tax. The argument fails to recognize that the general excise tax is set up for the pass-on of the tax at every transaction. That is why the general excise tax rate is so low compared to the sales tax rates of other states.

Moreover, this argument fails to recognize that the pass-on would have been much worse if the general excise tax rate had been increased.

In sum, suspending the general excise tax exemptions will have lesser detrimental impacts and be fairer than increasing the general excise tax rate.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Women's Legislative Caucus Bills a Bright Spot in 2011 Session

By Rep. Marilyn Lee.

The following was published by Honolulu Civil Beat on June 14, 2011

I felt a sense of pride reading a recent letter to the editor in a Honolulu newspaper from Marci A. Hamilton of the Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University in New York.

She wrote, “For the sake of Hawaii’s children, Governor Neil Abercrombie should sign into law Senate Bill 217, which opens the court house door for victims of childhood sexual abuse who have been excluded by unfairly short statutes of limitations.”

Yes, SB 217 is just one of the bills passed this year as part of the legislative package of the Women’s Legislative Caucus that will make a significant difference in our state. Yes, Hawaii is again leading the way.

Other bills passed as part of the package are SB 229, which will protect the rights of victims of domestic violence related to employment status. Introduced over and over for several years, the bill finally passed with certain protections for employers included.

Another victory is the passage of SB 219 which prohibits the shackling or restraint of incarcerated women in labor or who are pregnant. Endorsed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, this bill puts us in the company of a very few progressive states which have passed such humane measures.

The concept of House bill 968 is another measure, though not the exact bill in our package, that assists victims by plugging up a loophole in our TRO procedures, protecting victims of domestic violence from a lapse in protection.


Still, we are disappointed that a bill which would protect and assist the victims of the violent crime of rape sits in committee. The bill which would require all Hawaii hospitals to provide rape victims with information and emergency contraception has been introduced yearly for a decade without success.

In addition, we are saddened we were not able to obtain an appropriation to continue the work of the Path Clinic which assists addicted mothers who are pregnant to recover and deliver healthy babies.

We won’t give up. Many times our issues are relegated to the end of calendar or not considered, however, we are thankful to the committee chairs and legislators who have been supportive, never faltered, and made a difference for women and children in Hawaii.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wai'anae Town Hall Meeting with Rep. Jo Jordan

Wai'anae Town Hall June 2011

Paying for News

Yesterday, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser announced that they will be putting up a paywall on their website for certain parts of their online coverage. They did not provide details on what specifically would be behind the paywall or how much they are planning to charge.

Hawaii Business Magazine also covered the subject of "paying for news" in their June edition. It's a comprehensive overview of the Honolulu newscene from the perspective of news providers, news readers, and news makers. Rep. Tom Brower is in it and said:

“In some ways, there is more meaningful news out there if you know where to look for it,” says Brower, who reads the Star-Advertiser every day, channel surfs TV news and drops in on several websites.

“There are stories you won’t get on mainstream television and certainly not on commercial radio,” Brower says. “So I wouldn’t say it is all doom and gloom. It’s out there if you look for it.”

Brower worked in broadcasting for about 10 years during and after college, including local radio stations KSSK and KPOI. He started in radio at KGU on Seaside Avenue in Waikiki.

Rep Jordan interviews Rep Marcus Oshiro

House Freshmen Representatives reviewing budget worksheets in Finance hearing
Left to right: Reps Dee Morikawa, Jo Jordan, Mark Hashem, Derek Kawakami, Linda Ichiyama and Ty Cullen

On the next edition of "Jordan's Journal", Rep. Jordan interviews Finance Chair, Rep. Marcus Oshiro. This show airs on Olelo channel 54 on the following dates and times:

Thursday, June 9, 2011 at 6:30 p.m.
Friday, June 10, 2011 at 2:30 p.m.
Saturday, June 11, 2011 at 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, June 12, 2011 at 1:30 p.m.

Highlights include:

*Looking back on the 2011 session

*Comparing the current economic situation with "The Santa Claus Years" - before 2007

*How the budget was balanced

*The General Excise Tax as a means of raising revenue - pro and con

*Eliminating furloughs

*Restoring funds for certain programs - which programs and why

*Giving the new administration the resources to re-size and re-tool

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tonight - Hilo Legislative Wrap Up

Hilo Town Hall Meeting & Legislative Highlights

Community Invited

WHAT: The community is invited to attend a town hall meeting and legislative update hosted by state Representatives Mark Nakashima (District 1 – North Kohala, South Kohala, Hamakua, North Hilo, South Hilo); Jerry Chang (District 2 – South Hilo, Waiakea Kai, Kaumana, Keaukaha); Clift Tsuji (District 3 – South Hilo, Panaewa, Puna, Keaau, Kurtistown); and Bob Herkes (District 5 – Puna, Ka'u, South Kona, North Kona.)

House Finance Chair, Rep. Marcus Oshiro, will also be in attendance to discuss the state budget bill, closing the budget deficit, and how this will impact the public.

WHEN: Tuesday, June 7, 2011

5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: University of Hawaii at Hilo

UCB 127 (Ho'oulu Terrace)

WHY: District representatives will report and take questions on the key bills passed by the 2011 Legislature including the state budget, capital improvements, mortgage foreclosures and updates on Big Island issues.

Rep Rhoads' prostitution bill signed into law

HB44, a bill that makes it a misdemeanor to offer or agree to pay a fee to another person for the purpose of sexual conduct within 750 feet of a school or public park, was signed into law on June 1, 2011 by Governor Abercrombie. The bill, which was introduced by Rep. Karl Rhoads (District 28 – Downtown, Chinatown) is now Act 74 and takes effect on July 1, 2011.

"Children and their parents, going to and from school or the park, should not be exposed to a gauntlet of prostitutes, pimps and johns," said Rep. Rhoads. "HB 44 raises the penalty for johns, and subsequently helps to clear out prostitution in areas where children must travel. The Governor's signing of this bill is a strong message that the public has a right to use public thoroughfares without being intimidated by illegal activity."

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Jordan's Journal

Rep. Jo Jordan

Add TV producer to Rep. Jo Jordan's repertoire. In addition to being an experienced tax accountant and newly appointed state legislator, she recently started a public access series called "Jordan's Journal".

The first episode of "Jordan's Journal" is a two-parter with special guests William Aila, Jr., Chairperson of the Board of Land and Natural Resources, and Senator Maile Shimabukuro, District 21 - Ko 'Olina, Kahe Point, Nanakuli, Maili, Waianae, Makaha, Makua, Ka'ena Point. As both the host and guests are long-time Waianae Coast residents and community members, the conversation is focused on the district - one that has both a rich history and culture, and many serious social challenges.

Willam Aila, Jr.

Part 1: Airs on Sunday, June 5, 2011, 11:00 a.m., Olelo View, Ch. 54. (Repeats Tuesday, June 7, 2011, 1:30 p.m., Olelo Focus, Ch. 49.)

Rep. Jordan asks her guests to provide some background, especially their ties to Waianae. In addition to being born and raised in Waianae, Bill Aila was the long-time harbor master of the Waianae boat harbor, which is part of the department he currently chairs.

Maile Shimabukuro has family roots in Waianae and has lived there since she was 3 years old. Her background as an attorney and her work with Legal Aid is paramount to her role as a lawmaker. She was a state representative for 8 years prior to being appointed to the Senate seat vacated by Colleen Hanabusa who is now a U.S. Congresswoman.

Jo Jordan comes from a military family who settled in Waianae in the early 1970's. She has lived in the family home in Waianae since 1976. She is a tax accountant by trade and is also deeply involved in community service as a volunteer.

Senator Maile Shimabukuro

Part 2: Airs on Sunday, June 5, 2011, 11:30 a.m., Olelo View, Ch. 54. (Repeats Wednesday, June 8, 2011, 11:00 a.m., Olelo Focus, Ch. 49.)

Rep. Jordan asks Chairperson Aila and Senator Shimabukuro to describe the qualities they bring to their new official positions and why the Governor selected them to serve. They talk about the challenges on a day-to-day level, and how their combined talents and knowledge can help not only Waianae but the entire state.

After working in the Waianae community and seeing the positive developments over the years, the three believe that the Waianae Coast has much to offer to the rest of the state as well.

Rep. Jordan will hold her first post-session Town Hall meeting on:

Date - Wednesday, June 15th, 2011
Time - 6:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Guests - Governor Neil Abercrombie and Rep. Marcus Oshiro, House Finance Chair

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Rep. Marcus Oshiro hits the stage

Pictured from (left to right): Jodie Yamada (Elaine), Marcus Oshiro (Dean), Valerie Falle (Kimi Morimoto), and Nani Morita (Flo) in the production of "It's All Relative." Photo courtesy of Kumu Kahua Theatre.

Our very own Rep. Marcus Oshiro, the State House Finance Chairman, has a part in a new dark comedy by playwright Edward Sakamoto that opened on May 26, 2011 at Kumu Kahua Theatre. It got great reviews this past weekend, so plan to check it out before it closes at the end of June.

The play, “It’s All Relative,” follows a seemingly happy local Japanese-American family as they deal with lingering issues in modern Hawaii. Hidden behind what appears to be a stable and happy family lay a web of snarled relationships between family members, starting first with the collapse of a 50-year marriage. Rep. Oshiro plays the failed couple’s son, Dean Miyamoto, a frustrated high school teacher going through a midlife crisis. The multi-generational family is rounded off with Miyamoto’s wife Elaine, his unmarried sister Flo and his three Yonsei granddaughters.

Check out the review of the play from John Berger in the Honolulu Pulse as well as Noe Tanigawa’s backstage interview on Hawaii Public Radio.

Where: Kumu Kahua Theatre, 46 Merchant St
When: 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays, through June 26
Cost: $20 general admission (various discounts available)
Info: 536-4441 or

Waikoloa Talk Story

Waikoloa Talk Story with Rep. Evans and Sen. Green

Rep. Belatti's May/ June 2011 Newsletter

Rep. Belatti June 2011 Newsletter