Articles by Robert Thomas:

Upcoming CLE: Hawaii's Shoreline and Coastal Law and Regulation

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014 in Business

BY ROBERT THOMAS - There's still time to register and attend the upcoming seminar,"Hawaii's Shoreline and Coastal Law and Regulation." It's scheduled for Friday, July 18, 2014, in downtown Honolulu at the YWCA. Here's the description: This program will cover recent Hawaii case law, including the recent Hawaii Supreme Court decision regarding identifying the certified […]

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Hawaii Under Attack From The Air!

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

No, it's not Pearl Harbor. But from some of the reactions we're seeing, you might think the Imperial Japanese Navy was once again anchored off of our fair shores. But thankfully no, it's only aerial advertising, one small airplane towing a sign. But the airplane's sorties have been generating attention like you wouldn't believe. Hawaii has […]

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Prohibiting Sitting Or Laying Down On Oahu's Sidewalks 24/7 Makes Law More Susceptible To Challenge

Monday, June 30th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Here's a follow up to last week's story on the "sit-lie" and "don't use the bathroom in public" ordinances now being considered by the Honolulu City Council (see "As Judge Kozinski Said, It's A Sidewalk, Not A Sideseat Or A Sidebed"). Today's Star-Advertiser reports in "Sit-lie ban sought for all Oahu" […]

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Bridge Aina Lea Case Goes to Hawaii Supreme Court

Monday, June 16th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Here are the merits briefs in an important case set for argument later this month in the Hawaii Supreme Court. The litigation is a series of two lawsuits that originated in state court in the Third Circuit (Big Island), one an original jurisdiction civil rights lawsuit, the other an administrative appeal. The […]

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It Was 30 Years Ago Today...

Sunday, June 1st, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS ...No, not Sgt. Pepper. It was on this day in 1984 that the U.S. Supreme Court issued its 8-0 decision in Hawaii Housing Authority v. Midkiff, 467 U.S. 229 (1984), as this article ("Today in 1984: SCOTUS Upholds Hawaii Land Redistribution Eminent Domain Plan") correctly notes. Check it out. The author, "an […]

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Quo Warranto Fu: Courts Have Jurisdiction To Determine Whether State Representative Is A Qualified Voter In His District

Monday, April 28th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - The Hawaii Constitution requires that a member of the state House of Representatives be a "qualified voter" of the district she or he represents. In Hussey v. Say, No. CAAP-13-0002255 (Apr. 24, 2014), the Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals analyzed how someone who asserts that the representative from District A is in actuality […]

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Hawaii Supreme Court Considering Whether A County Has A Duty To Maintain Accurate Public Records

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Here's an interesting case upcoming on the Hawaii Supreme Court's oral argument calendar that is worth following. (April 29, 2014, at 10:00 a.m. - the court is taking the show on the road, and the arguments will be at the gym at Kealakehe High School, in Kailua-Kona, on the Big Island.) […]

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The Real Stories Behind "The Descendants"

Monday, March 10th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Our old U. Hawaii Wills & Trusts lawprof Randy Roth was the legal advisor to The Descendants, the 2011 George Clooney movie about a Honolulu lawyer (our review here). Professor Roth has published an article about his experience, which also details the legal cases that were the stories-behind-the-story. Here's the summary: The […]

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GMO Chapter 2 - Big Island Farmer: Invalidate County's Anti-GMO Ordinance

Monday, March 10th, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Here's the Complaint for Declaratory Injunctive Relief, filed earlier this week in iwhich an anonymous Big Island papaya farmer challenges the County of Hawaii's recently-adopted ordinance about GMO farming. Although the ordinance exempts farmers who currently grow GMO papaya from the ordinance's ban on "open air cultivation, propagation, development, or testing" […]

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Looks Like Hawaii Won't Need To Count All Those Soldiers, Sailors, And Marines In The Next Reapportionment Anyway

Sunday, March 2nd, 2014 in Guest Commentary

BY ROBERT THOMAS - Not only did the State win the reapportionment legal case in which it successfully argued that military personnel and their families who reside in Hawaii are not "permanent residents" and thus may be treated as outlanders and ignored for state reapportionment purposes [we represented the plaintiffs who challenged that scheme], but with […]

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