88 Organizations Seek State Grants in Aid

Should the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii be funded by your taxpayer dollars?

The chamber and 87 other groups petitioned the House and Senate Finance Committees yesterday for grants in aid.

The hearing went on for several hours in the capitol auditorium. Legislators did not take any action, and while several are supportive of the organizations making the requests, they say privately during these challenging economic times, there is no money.

But most of the organizations have not gotten the message that they have to stop relying in state subsidies and seek private funding instead.

While 88 organizations is a considerable number of agencies relying on state money, in past decades, when the economy was booming, some 600 organizations sought state support through these grants in aid.

Many of these programs are sponsored by the state general fund while other organizations disappeared or merged with one another over the years.

Hawaiian Committee Wants to Rename Discovers Day to Indigenous People’s Day

The Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee passed a measure yesterday to replace Discovers’ Day in October, a state holiday, with Indigenous People’s Day.

The newly renamed holiday would exclusively focus on the achievements of native Hawaiians and Polynesians.

Discovers’ Day originally replaced Columbus Day when Christopher Columbus was found by some to be politically incorrect.

During the hearing, lawmakers wrangling over just how far the legislature should take the holiday renaming process and amended the legislation several times.

The bill faces an uncertain future during the remainder of the legislative session.

Ways and Means Committee Reviews Dozens of Funding Bills Today

The Ways and Means Committee will tackle dozens of funding bills today at the capitol beginning at 9 a.m.

This is the first of several sessions prior to cross over voting, which will begin in two weeks.

Carlisle Makes Second State of the City Address 

At 10 a.m. over at city hall, Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle will present his second State of the City address. Will it be his last?

If Honolulu Mayoral Candidates Ben Cayetano and Kirk Caldwell get their way, the answer is yes.

All Star Panel Tackles Oahu’s Important Issues

An all star panel of international, national and Hawaii experts will gather at the Mission Memorial Auditorium on Wednesday, February 29 from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. to brief the public on sustainable development, major infrastructure projects, and solutions to traffic congestion on Oahu.

National and international experts include John Charles of the Cascade Policy Institute, Wendell Cox of Demographia, Adrian Moore of the Reason Public Policy Institute, and Randal O’Toole of Cato Institute.

Hawaii experts include University of Hawaii Law professor Randall Roth, University of Hawaii Engineering Professor Panos Prevedouros and Architect Peter Vincent.

Another rail-related panel and discussion will be held with most of the panelists listed above at Kapolei Hale the evening before on Tuesday, February 28 from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

There is no charge for the public to attend.