Vacation rental law challenged by 2 lawsuits

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Tropical Storm Erick passes south of Hawai‘i Island as Flossie nears Central Pacific
Although Erick continued to weaken overnight on its path south of the islands, it brings with it a plethora of adverse weather conditions. Erick was centered about 250 miles southwest of Hilo and 310 miles south of Honolulu at 5 a.m. with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. KHON2.KITV.
At 5 a.m. Friday, the National Hurricane Center said Tropical Storm Flossie, still packing winds of 70 mph or higher, was about 1,145 miles east of Hilo and moving west-northwest near 17 mph. Flossie is forecast to cross into the Central Pacific today. Hawaii News Now. KITV.

Honolulu’s new vacation rental law faces at least 2 legal challenges
The Hawaii Vacation Rental Owners Association filed the first lawsuit, saying the new law is unconstitutional and violates laws governing zoning and administrative procedures. A second lawsuit by the owners at the Waikiki Banyan condos will also seek a temporary injunction to halt the city from enforcing the new law. Hawaii News Now. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. KITV.

‘Success’ bonus sparks criticism about use of taxpayer money
The board of the Hawaii Strategic Development Corp. approved a “success bonus” of at least $52,827 for the government agency’s outgoing President Karl Fooks in June, raising concerns in the Legislature as to whether the unusual payment for a public-sector worker was an appropriate use of government funds. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

UH president still supports TMT, but says conflict is greatest challenge he’s faced
University of Hawaiʻi President David Lassner has been one of the Thirty Meter Telescope’s most vocal supporters. But in a recent interview Lassner said he’s struggling with how the project is dividing the university and broader community. Hawaii News Now.

Head Start program gets big federal boost
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will award nearly $10 million to three Hawai‘i nonprofits that operate the Head Start preschool program. HCAP, which offers preschool programming for children ages 3 to 5 on O‘ahu, will receive nearly $7 million. Maui Family Support Services, which runs the Head Start program on Maui, Molokaʻi, and Lānaʻi, and Kauaʻi’s Child & Family Service will receive approximately $1.5 million each. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i’s Thoughts on Trump and Tax Reform
Respondents in the BOSS Survey and 808 Poll were asked how they felt about President Donald Trump’s impact on the local economy… read more
Vacation rental owners consider options
Early indications suggest the legislation is working as intended to limit tourists in residential areas and make units available to residents. It is also forcing short-term rental operators to make tough decisions about their businesses. Should they rent to a long-term tenant, leave the unit empty except for friends and family or sell the property altogether? Civil Beat.

Tourism impacts in Windward O‘ahu
University of Hawai‘i researchers are looking for hard data on how precisely are visitors affecting local neighborhoods, like Lanikai in Windward Oahu. Dolan Ebersole, extension agent with the UH Sea Grant Program, is leading the study. Hawaiʻi Public Radio.

Window has closed for millions in federal funding for Ala Wai Canal
City and state officials missed a Wednesday deadline to reach an agreement that would have given them access to $220 million in federal funding to shore up the Ala Wai Canal and its watershed to protect Waikīkī and several other Oʻahu neighborhoods from flooding. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Moderately priced units in a planned Kaka‘ako condo is attracting many buyers
The developer of the project at 615 Keawe St. called Ililani has passed out about 700 applications to prospective buyers or brokers for 165 moderately priced units in the planned 328-unit building. All the affordable condos — one- and two-bedroom units with 511 to 799 square feet of living space — are reserved for Hawai‘i residents with moderate incomes and are priced from $312,600 to $657,100. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Hale Nani health care workers plan to strike
About 200 health care workers at Hale Nani Rehabilitation & Nursing Center are expected to participate in a one-day strike Friday over low wages and understaffing. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. 

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