Brief Report on PLDC from Kat: “This is about justice for the people of Hawaii”

Aloha Justice Advocates!

Yesterday I testified at another Public Land Development Corporation hearing. This one was to amend the amended rules-this time the amendment was about limiting public testimony. They are really becoming the PLD Sleaze! Although they promised to return to the neighbor islands, they held this one hearing on O`ahu at 10:30 am on a Tuesday morning, making it difficult/impossible for neighbor islanders to attend. I think they thought that this would limit the hearing…it didn’t! The hearing went on for 4 hours with most testimony in opposition and calling for a repeal.

Here for CAP Testimony – PLDC 11.13.12

Another  interesting tidbit: The PLDC sent out a notice of this public hearing in October, but it was never listed on the egovernment website where all public meetings approved by the Lt. Governor are listed.  While I sign-waved on Beretania, my partner,  Henry Curtis, went to the LG’s office to ask if the meeting was legal. He was told it was not.

When the meeting was gathering there were two board members present: William Aila and former Senator Bobby Bunda along with the Exec. Director, Lloyd Hariguchi and Assistant, Randall Ikeda. A discussion commenced about the sunshine law (Chapter 91 – open meetings) and as I was sitting in the front row, I witnessed Hariguchi asking Ikeda about Chapter 92 (which is the open records law). I found it interesting that with all the public outcry, he didn’t even know the statute governing open meetings. Then, in walked the DBEDT representative on the Board (Mary Alice Evans). She rushed to the back room and Bunda left the table to meet with her. Oops, if 3 board members are present, it is a meeting – governed by Chapter 91. What happened next? Bunda left so they couldn’t be challenged on the sunshine law. Sleazy, yeah?

Mahalo for  caring about justice…it is the backbone of democracy and YOU make it happen!  Read the important quote below from Robert Reich…

“One of the most important things is the central theme of my latest book, Beyond OutrageNothing good happens in Washington, or for that matter, in state capitals, unless good people outside Washington or those state capitals make it happen. Unless they push very hard. Unless they’re organized, mobilized, and energized to force the political system to respond. The rest of us have to do more than simply vote, pay our taxes, and respond to summonses to be on juries. Citizenship goes far beyond those three. We’ve got to insist on being heard.”
Robert Reich

Related Articles:
PLDC hearing evokes calls for repeal, Nov. 13, 2012, KITV4
Excerpt:
HONOLULU —A hearing Tuesday to determine administrative rules for the Public Land Development Corporation turned into a call for repeal, as an overflow crowd descended upon a tiny board room at the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

“You just can’t rip off the people’s public resources and get away with it,” said Keiko Bonk, a former Hawaii County councilwoman and co-founder of Hawaii’s Green Party.

A majority of those who testified during the nearly four-hour hearing spoke out against the PLDC and its ability to bypass state and county zoning laws.  The state-run corporation was created during the 2011 legislative session under Act 55.

Sunshine, Nov. 13, 2012, Star Advertiser, Political Radar, ddepledge

The Public Land Development Corp. made a deliberate decision on Tuesday to allow only two of its five board members to hear public testimony on the latest draft of administrative rules.

William Aila, the director of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, who serves on the board, said the PLDC received a verbal opinion from the state Office of Information Practices that all board members could attend the meeting without violating the state’s open meetings law. The law generally prohibits more than two board members from discussing matters relating to official board business outside of board meetings.

But Aila said a PLDC attorney cautioned against allowing more than two board members to attend the meeting, because someone could later allege that the administrative rules were adopted improperly. Several activists have threatened lawsuits against the PLDC.

The public hearing on Tuesday, which lasted nearly four hours, was to hear testimony on administrative rules. It was not a PLDC board meeting.

“In an abundance of caution, we decided that we would just have no more than two members here,” Aila said.

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