Hawaii State News, afternoon update, 15 Jan 2019

Welcome to the afternoon edition of “Hawaii News Digest”–Hawaii State News.  Views expressed in this Hawaii news summary are those of the reporters and correspondents.  Topics cited in this post are from today’s issue of “Hawaii Business Magazine.”

Accessed on 15 January 2019, 2028 UTC, Post 18268.



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Corruption scandal jumps to city hall as top attorney gets federal target letter
The U.S. Department of Justice has notified Honolulu’s top civil attorney that she’s a target in the federal corruption investigation that has already zeroed in on the city’s highest-ranking law enforcement officials. Donna Leong, who was appointed Honolulu’s corporation counsel by Mayor Kirk Caldwell in 2013, received a federal “target letter” as part of the probe. Hawaii News Now. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. KITV. KHON2.

Sergeant won’t testify in Kealohas’ trial
Honolulu police Sgt. Daniel Sellers was not in on the alleged mailbox theft conspiracy and is not expected to testify in the upcoming federal criminal trial against retired Police Chief Louis Kealoha, Kealoha’s former deputy prosecutor wife and three other former members of the Honolulu Police Department’s elite Criminal Intelligence Unit, according to details contained in Sellers’ plea agreement. Star-Advertiser.

Senators: Some cabinet nominees won’t make it
Some Hawaii senators say they aren’t inclined to confirm the governor’s choices for Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, Department of Budget and Finance and the Department of Public Safety. Civil Beat.

Conference on climate change brings together diverse experts
The former chief of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, William Aila Jr., said Monday that there’s no political will to deal with the consequences of sea-level rise brought about by climate change. The conference at the East-West Center brought together a unique panel of experts from coastal states and Hawaii. Tribune-Herald.

Coast Guard members continue missions, about to miss a paycheck
On Tuesday, Members of the U.S. Coast Guard will miss their first paycheck since the partial federal shutdown began in December. Uniformed service members and essential civilians are still on duty performing missions vital to public safety and national security. But this isn’t the first time the Coast Guard has been through this challenge. Hawaii Public Radio.

Federal shutdown delays Southwest’s plans to start Hawaii service
Southwest had been working with the Federal Aviation Administration to obtain what’s called ETOPS, or extended-range twin-engine operational performance standards, certification for extended over-water flights. But the problem: The FAA workers who oversee those activities are on furlough due to the government shutdown. Hawaii News Now.

Student loan debt doubles in 10 years
Student loan debt across Hawaii rose to $4.1 billion, an increase of 107 percent from $2 billion in 2008. Across the country, student loan debt rose by 129 percent since 2008, reaching $1.36 trillion as of the third quarter of 2018. People with student loans in the U.S. owe about $22,600 on average. Just 5.7 percent of student loans were delinquent. Star-Advertiser. 

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Until next time,

Russ Roberts