BY SAM SLOMRail Roaded. Today, at 10 am, in Honolulu Federal District Court, there will be a hearing on the standing of the seven plaintiffs-including the SBH Foundation-in the suit against the City of Honolulu regarding the $6 billion-plus train to nowhere elevated heavy rail project. The hearing on the merits of the project is scheduled for February.

Ciao, Ansaldo. The Honolulu Area Rapid Transit (HART) committee met Monday and approved a $1.4 billion contract for construction of the City Rail Transit project with the Ansaldo corporation, despite the firm’s checkered past and questionable finances. The HART members should be compelled to give their personal financial guarantee on this boondoggle. Not to worry, however, since the Italian government will back Ansaldo 100%. YIKES!

Rail Debate. Councilman Tom Berg sought to put together a public debate on the rail issue for the benefit of the public. It will be next Tuesday, 6 pm at City Hall (Mission Auditorium). The government supporters of government rail refuse to appear. Come join us anyway.

Business to Sell? A local entrepreneur couple is seeking new business opportunity on Oahu. Have you been running the same business too long? Is the economy & tight margins creating undue pressure physically and/or mentally? Are there family pressures, illness, children, parents, which require more time and attention? Couple has extensive experience in Hotels, Retail, Restaurants & Service Businesses, both Management & Ownership, deep island roots with excellent credentials, very adaptable & comfortable in all island cultures.

Willing to acquire a 51% ownership & management or complete purchase. Proven success in Turnarounds, are able to work hard, bring hands-on participatory management, and can turn tired businesses into thriving businesses. Interested? Contact Sam at 808-349-5438.

Yo, More Business Wanted! “Got ‘biz-for-sale’? Want to retire, cash-in your trips, take a trip around the world, hand off  or transition out of your business, and get paid for it? A qualified mainland biz buyer, with kamaaina family roots, seeks to buy a Hawaii biz asap, and move here.  Criteria: Service business, repeat customers, a grow-able entity, profitable. No restaurants or retail shops.Some examples:  Irrigation Repair, Landscape Maintenance, Truck Repair,etc.! If this applies to YOU , or someone you KNOW or SUSPECT may BECOME interested in selling their Hawaii biz, all at once or in phases starting now through 2012AD, please contact SBH member in good standing, Joe Teipel, aka SurferJoeTheAuctioneer,an SBH All-Star winner, at 808-538-1961/479-0817. Please call him now for more details and to start due diligence  before his arrival to meet and greet qualified prospects, set for THIS Dec. 8-14, 2011 AD. Additional bonus: let’s make sure the gentlemen buys from an SBH referral, as JET will then donate a portion of his commission to our beloved SBH Foundation:)!$:

Smart, Eh? Kailua is the brainiest community on Oahu, according to new rankings of the smartest places in the United States with populations between 10,000 and 49,999. Nearly 43 percent of adults 25 and older there have at least a bachelor’s degree, and nearly 19 percent of those have a graduate or professional degree, according to the analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau by On Numbers, an affiliate of Pacific Business News. If Kailua is so smart, why do they house President Obama there every Christmas?

Water, Water Everywhere. The semi-autonomous City Board of Water Supply just raised your water usage rates (again) by 9.6% annually for the next five years starting January 1, 2012. This is on top of sewer rate, electric rate, cargo rate, real property tax rate and auto registration rate increases.

Unfriendly Skies. American Airlines filed for bankruptcy. Look for many jobs lost coming soon. Have you seen local and national airfares this season?

Shop N’ Spend Till You Drop. Think we’re in a deep recession? Not everyone. “Black Friday,” “Small Business Saturday,” “Cyber Monday,” were all commercial successes this past weekend but when will the commercial madness end? The days were obviously profitable in terms of revenue brought in and increases over last year but there must be more to life than shopping and getting pepper sprayed, right?

99% and Counting. Hawaii’s own resident whacko, Roseanne Barr, resident of Waimea on the Big Island, was out protesting against the rich with the occupy crowd. Hello! Barr is one of the 1% richest people. Freedom of speech lives.

Got Credit? Monday Fitch announced the United States could keep its current AAA credit rating but it will now be on a negative future watch. Yesterday, Standard & Poor’s lowered the credit rating of many of the 37 world banks including the biggest US banks..

Stimulate This. The Hawaii Federal Stimulus Oversite Committee, scheduled to hold its final meeting yesterday at the Capitol, was cancelled by Chair Kate Stanley. It is rescheduled for next month.

Where’s Barney? The announcement by Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) that he would not run for re-election next year, after three decades in office, was met mostly by cheers. The colorful and controversial Barney, was, along with Chris Dodd (who previously retired) principally responsible for allowing Freddie & Fannie to run amok. Both should be in jail for what they did to create our financial crisis years ago.

Say Aaaah. “How Healthy Is Healthcare in Hawaii?” That is the topic of two panels for the next presentation of Think Tech Hawaii and the Hawaii Venture Capital Association next Tuesday, December 6, 11;30 am to 2 pm at the Plaza Club (20th floor). Sign up on hvca.orgor call 780-9254 for information.

Sunrise on Hiatus. The monthly SBH Sunrise Networking Breakfast Forum is on vacation in December; it will return the last Thursday of each month, 7 – 8:30 am, in the Pineapple Room, Macy’s Ala Moana in January.

UI Claims Up. The number of new claims for unemployment compensation benefits in Hawaii has increased dramatically over last year.

Judicial Reform. The state Judicial Reinvestment Initiative held its third meeting yesterday at the Capitol. The objective is to reform Hawaii’s judicial system, to save costs of incarceration and to reallocate funds from savings into more community rehabilitative programs. The absence again of City Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro was duly noted. The group meets for its final time on January 17 when model legislation will be submitted.

Come Together. Reminder that the Maunalua Bay Foundation will hold its new monthly community arts and farmers’ market this Sunday, December 4, 10 am – 2 pm at Koko Marina Shopping Center in the First Hawaiian Bank parking lot.

Blonde Uprising. Award winning Hawaii Reporter.com, Hawaii’s first electronic daily newspaper begun 9 years ago, still is free. Hawaii Reporter’s Malia Zimmerman reports daily (M-F) on the Rick Hamada Show, KHVH radio on 830 AM at, 7:40 am. Malia also reports on Kauai’s KKCR with Sandy Brodie on Tuesday mornings, on the station’s “Morning Paper.” She will report the news behind the news for you.

Want more local business information? Please visit the several SBH websites at:: www.smartbusinesshawaii.com,www.educate808.com and www.sbhfoundation.org.

 

Aloha,

Sam

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Sen. Sam Slom, R-Hawaii Kai-Diamond Head, is an entrepreneur, small business owner and consulting economist (SMS Consultants); President of Smart Business Hawaii (SBH) and the SBH Entrepreneurial Education Foundation. He graduated from the University of Hawaii-Manoa. Reach him at sbh@lava.net