Colleen Hanabusa
Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa

Koolina Exec Recruting Support for Redistricting Plan Beneficial to Hanabusa

Ken Williams, Vice President of Resort Operations for the Ko Olina Community Association, is seeking support from resort members and friends for a Congressional redistricting plan that would be better politically for incumbent Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa.

Hanabusa, a Democrat who lives in the community, will be up for re-election in 2012. Her major opponent at this point is Charles Djou, a former Republican Congressman who served in federal office for 6 months after winning a special three-way election. Hanabusa beat Djou in the general election by 6 percentage points or 10,000 votes. Djou last week announced plans to run for that seat again in 2012.

Like other states, Hawaii is in the midst of developing a Congressional redistricting plan that will be enacted in time for the 2012 election. The Hawaii Reapportionment Commission is redrawing the boundaries for Congressional Districts 1 and 2. The plans for new House, Senate and Congressional district lines based on population growth, have been submitted for public comment.

The current plan, which puts Ko Olina in District 1, is being pushed by the majority of the 9-member commission. Williams is endorsing that plan because it benefits Hanabusa. Meanwhile many Republicans, including the four members on the commission, back the only other plan which is not currently up for consideration, but does have a chance of being enacted.

“The latest census map shows that Ko Olina has enough people and jobs to be part of the urban core with Waikiki (District 1), as opposed to the outer islands and rural communities (District 2),” Williams writes in an email. He adds, “I would also like to emphasize that having Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa in our district (Ko Olina/Kapolei) is very important as she has done much for our community through the years as a State Senator and regional leader.”

Hawaii Stockerbroker Sentenced for Fraud

A former Honolulu stock broker was sentenced Monday to 57 months in prison for fraud and tax offenses, a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Hawaii said. Ryan Kimura, 42, was sentenced on wire fraud, bank fraud, and money laundering charges and for filing a false federal tax return.

The IRS uncovered the case, which was prosecuted in Hawaii by Assistant United States Attorney Leslie E. Osborne, Jr.
Susan Oki Mollway, Hawaii’s Chief United States District Judge, told Kimura to pay his former employer, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter (MSDW), and the IRS, $1.5 million in restitution.

Kimura, a stockbroker, convinced his former wife’s family members to deposit more than $2.1 million in accounts with Morgan Stanley by “making false and fraudulent representations and omitting facts.”
“They unknowingly applied for and received MSDW checks, which Kimura used without their knowledge. Deposits were received from Kimura’s former father-in-law; mother-in-law; grandmother-in-law; and sister-in-law; and a company in Japan owned by his former father-inlaw,” Hawaii’s U.S. Attorney said.

The U.S. Attorney and IRS also say that “Kimura made stock trades with the Japanese company’s funds resulting in losses of approximately $360,000, received a commission for each of those stock trades, and manufactured reports of interest allegedly earned.”
Kimura also “embezzled $1.5 million from his victims through forging signatures on 206 checks and using the Japanese company’s funds without authorization,” the U.S. Attorney said.
S&P Downgrade Serves as Wake-up Call for States, Mercatus Expert Said

Standard & Poor’s decision to downgrade the federal government’s debt will cause a reaction in other debt markets. In addition, state and local governments doing well financially, but that have projects on their books that rely on federal projects, may find it more expensive to borrow funds. That is according to Eileen Norcross, a Senior Research Fellow with the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.

“With this wake up call, states like these can take this opportunity to pursue the right policies with its tax and fiscal choices so it can still attract business activity rather than just industries that are federally subsidized,” Norcross said.

The federal downgrade also impacts private companies contracting with federal, state and local governments that finance projects with debt.

“The decision to downgrade the federal government injects uncertainty into these decisions. But this doesn’t mean that these governments won’t be able to repay their debts. It may make it more expensive for them to issue it. By how much, is unclear,” Norcross said.

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