BY RICHARD RAPOZA – Hawaii Senate president Shan Tsutsui today released the following statement welcoming new Hawaii Senators Maile Shimabukuro and Malama Solomon, who were named by Governor Neil Abercrombie to replace Senators Colleen Hanabusa and Dwight Takamine:
“I am pleased to welcome these two experienced lawmakers to the Senate. While all of us in the Senate wish Senators Hanabusa and Takamine well on their transitions, we have also been anxious to come up to full strength. With the changes we have seen over the past months, it is reassuring to know that both Maile and Malama will come in with legislative experience and will be ready to serve the public on opening day.
“I would also like to thank Governor Abercrombie for selecting two outstanding individuals to serve their districts.”
Hanabusa resigned to take a seat in the U.S. Congress serving Hawaii’s First Congressional District. Takamine was named by Abercrombie to serve as director of the Hawaii Department of Labor.
Senator Russell Kokubun was also named by Abercrombie to lead the State Department of Agriculture. He is expected to resign his Senate seat before the end of the year.