In Print

  • Hawaii Senate Raises $9,400 for Hawaii Foodbank

    Honolulu Civil Beat - May 2, 2012

    If you’ve been down to the state Capitol in recent months, you’ve no doubt seen the fliers taped up in the elevators promoting fundraisers to benefit the Hawaii Foodbank.

    Hawaii senators got creative this year, going beyond the typical canned-goods drives. Sen. Mike Gabbard, for example, organized a “Capitol Idol” talent show to raise money. Sen. Clayton Hee hosted a “Dunk-a-Thon” fundraiser on the lawn of the Capitol.

    In all, senators raised $9,400 for the nonprofit, the Associated Press reports. Gabbard’s office alone raised more than $2,000.

  • Hawaii Senate Revives Interisland Undersea Cable Bill

    Honolulu Civil Beat - May 1, 2012

    The Senate voted to bring back to life Senate Bill 2785 — the undersea cable bill.

    The controversial bill had previously stalled in conference committee. Senators on Tuesday agreed to reconsider the last amendments made by the House.
    Sen. Mike Gabbard, chair of the Energy and Environment Committee, made floor comments, urging his colleagues to support the move:

  • Single-Use Bag Bill in Political Death Throes

    Honolulu Civil Beat - April 18, 2012

    Once touted as one the biggest environmental measures of the year, a bill that would charge consumers for single-use bags at the check-out counter appears to be on its deathbed.

    House Speaker Calvin Say has elected not to assign House Bill 2483 to conference committee, effectively killing it, according to Sen. Mike Gabbard who sponsored the legislation.

    Gabbard said he "had no idea" why Say wouldn't send it on to conference committee and Say didn't return a call for comment.

  • Hawaii Lawmakers Prepare for Talent Smackdown

    Honolulu Civil Beat - April 16, 2012

    State lawmakers will face off Monday evening during the “Capitol Idol 2012,” aka “Senate vs. House Talent Smack-down!”

    The event, to support the Foodbank, will be held at 5 p.m. at the state Capitol Auditorium. There is no charge to attend the event. Augie T will host.
    You can check out the flier and contestants here.

    From Sen. Mike Gabbard, who is is organizing the event: “See who earns bragging rights and who slinks away in defeat!”

  • Who Has Worst Hawaii Senate Attendance?

    Honolulu Civil Beat - April 13, 2012

    Sen. Malama Solomon missed eight of the first 45 Hawaii Senate floor sessions.

    Senate President Shan Tsutsui of Maui and Oahu senator Les Ihara tied for second for worst attendance record, posting five absences each.
    A Senate spokeswoman said Solomon, who represents Waimea, Hamakua and Hilo, spent four days "tending to a family matter," three days under a doctor's care for pneumonia and one day when "a meeting ran long."

  • Maui Invasive Species Committee Gets Capitol Recognition - April 5, 2012

    Members of the Maui Invasive Species Committee were honored during a floor presentation yesterday at the State Capitol.

    MISC members were credited for working to guard the county from environmental threats including coqui frogs, pampas grass, veiled chameleons, miconia, and more.

    “This is an incredible honor for all of the ISC’s, and I believe reflects on the vision, work, commitment, support, intelligence, and persistence that all of our partners and members of the committee have brought to MISC,” said Manager Teya Penniman.

  • Gabbard Shows Off Fluency in Teenage Acronyms While Promoting Senate vs. House Smackdown

    Honolulu Civil Beat - April 3, 2012

    Sen. Mike Gabbard has sent out an email to remind people about the talent competition between state senators and representatives, called Capitol Idol.

    The subject line: “Capitol Idol 2012 - The Smack-Down is On!”

    Gabbard, known as a talented musician and singer, is likely to be a formidable opponent. (You can listen to his clips here.)

    And he clearly has a strong hold on his teenage acronyms.

    This is his response to House members who have said to him, “The Senate is going down, big time:”

    How shall I respond? IMNSHO, “bring it.”

  • Still Alive at the Hawaii Ledge

    Honolulu Civil Beat - March 6, 2012

    Even the mammoth state Capitol was not immune from Tuesday's unrelenting stormy weather.

    Around 5 p.m., as the House of Representatives continued its marathon floor session — the Senate, as usual, had wrapped things up hours earlier — the lights in the chamber flickered before emergency power kicked in.

    Still, both chambers managed to plow through hundreds of bills that faced a Thursday deadline.

  • No Yellow!

    Honolulu Weekly - February 15, 2012

    Year after year, residents of Honolulu–and cities all over the world–open up their doors to find an unsought pile of wood pulp that has become increasingly obsolete over the years: the yellow pages. A small percentage of people may continue to make use of the phone book (the elderly, people stuck in business waiting rooms and pay phone frequents), but, as internet culture has evolved, so has the way that people get their information.

  • Young people show support for bill on disposable-bag fee

    Honolulu Star Advertiser - February 10, 2012

    Four hundred plastic grocery bags were staked to the state Capitol lawn along Beretania Street on Thursday to call attention to a Senate bill that would impose a 10-cent fee on the disposable sacks and their paper counterparts and channel some of the revenue to watershed protection projects.

    Girl Scout and Kalani High School sophomore Diana Sellner, along with about 15 of her friends, created the outdoor display to illustrate the number of disposable bags an average person on Oahu uses each year for a total of 400 million bags annually.

  • Plastic bag fee bill supported in state Capitol display

    Honolulu Star Advertiser - February 9, 2012

    Four hundred plastic grocery bags were staked to the state Capitol lawn along Beretania Street today to call attention to a Senate Bill that would impose a 10-cent fee on the disposable sacks and their paper counterparts and channel some of the revenue to fund watershed protection projects.

    Girl Scout and Kalani High School sophomore Diana Sellner, along with about 15 of her friends, created the outdoor display to illustrate the number of disposable bags used by the average person on Oahu each year (a total of 400 million bags).

  • Residents lobby for labeling of genetically modified foods

    Honolulu Star Advertiser - February 6, 2012

    Several Molokai residents and University of Hawaii students assembled a stone platform with a wooden statue known as a "ki`i" on the grounds of the state Capitol today to bring attention to legislative bills that would require the labeling of genetically modified food in Hawaii stores.

    Group spokesman Walter Ritte said they're lobbying at the state Legislature to pass the bills.

    He said the bills are being held in a joint committee that includes the committees on Energy and Environment and on Agriculture.

  • Lawmakers Plan Wind Talks on Molokai

    HECO submits new draft bids proposal to PUC
    Molokai Dispatch - October 14, 2011

    Sen. Mike Gabbard and at least two other legislators will visit Molokai Nov. 2 to discuss the so-called “Big Wind” project with local residents, the senator confirmed today.

    Gabbard, who chairs the Senate Energy/Environment Committee, is leading the visit with Sen. Kalani English and Rep. Denny Coffman. Rep. Mele Carroll may also attend.

  • Benefit For Makakilo Singer; Golf For Kapolei High

    West Oahu Islander - October 12, 2011


    We’ve had a family health crisis at the office recently. My office manager, Rock, and his wife, Ali, had to fly their newborn daughter, Grace, to San Diego for emergency heart surgery. She made it through her first surgery OK, but will have two more in the next six months. She has a rare congenital heart defect called hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Your prayers and thoughts are appreciated. We’re short-staffed while he and his family have been in San Diego. Please be patient as we do our best to reply to all your emails, phone calls and letters in the months ahead.

  • Biorefinery Breaks Ground In Kapolei

    West Oahu Islander - Sept 21, 2011

    Honeywell’s UOP LLC broke ground last month for its integrated biorefinery facility that will convert biomass into green transportation fuels at the Tesoro Hawaii refinery in Kapolei. The facility will serve as a demonstration unit, which will use a range of local and imported waste to create gasoline, diesel and jet fuel.The biorefinery was sponsored by $25 million in federal funding from the Department of Energy. It joins a list of 18 other biorefinery projects across the nation to receive funds.“This particular project ...

  • Going Down to Electric Avenue

    Civil Beat - July 18, 2011

    For $2 an hour, and for up to four hours at a time, owners of Nissan Leafs and the like can "fill ’er up" electronically at Hawaii's Capitol — that is, charge their electric vehicle's battery. The new electric charger, installed at the Legislature last week, already has a customer in state Sen. Mike Gabbard.

  • Crossroads leadership students test life skills on Hawaii camping trip - June 30, 2011

    The 20 students of the leadership program at Crossroads Alternative High School climbed the steep incline of Waipio Valley, made rigorous preparations for a seven-day camping trip at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and met with Dog the Bounty Hunter all as preparation for facing the bigger changes in real life during and after high school.“The class is a metaphor for the trip, and the trip is a metaphor for life,” Leadership Program Leader Marcia Nelson said.The 10-day trip to Hawaii from June 12 through 21 was the year-end celebration of the leadership program at Crossroads that Nelson deve