Leadership on the Mauna

Leadership entails not only planning for possible obstructions to your chosen plan of action, but also having the resolve to follow through with your plan.

Soft on crime – because of the money

In the news recently was a stunning announcement by Justin Kollar, who is the Kauai County prosecutor. State law says that for folks driving without a license or driving without insurance, heavier fines and more jail time apply to repeat offenders.

Withholding could be the root of all evil

Withholding is making someone who isn’t liable for tax, but who pays money to someone who is, responsible for collecting and paying the tax to the government. Employers, for example, must withhold federal and state income taxes out of wages paid to their employees.

The Special Land and Development Fund

In this week’s spotlight is the Special Land and Development Fund or SLDF, which is administered by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). Into that fund goes all land rents the State receives for land that is either leased or used under a revocable permit (such as those used by airport or harbor-based businesses).

The Special Land and Development Fund

In this week’s spotlight is the Special Land and Development Fund or SLDF, which is administered by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). Into that fund goes all land rents the State receives for land that is either leased or used under a revocable permit (such as those used by airport or harbor-based businesses).

Work together to form the best of our civilized society

Every so often, the news reports on people who deny the legitimacy of the government we have here in Hawaii. “We’re not subject to those laws,” they say, “so we don’t have to follow rules or pay taxes.” It pains me to read stories of people who lost their homes after being told that they didn’t have to pay back their mortgages because the laws under which they were made were invalid in Hawaii.

HI-5: The leakage hasn’t stopped yet

Just three months ago, the Hawaii State Auditor released the latest in a series of reports over the years on the Hawaii Deposit Beverage Container Program, known as HI-5.

Shining a bright light on state revenue estimates

At the Legislature, I often hear legislators considering proposed tax legislation ask our state Department of Taxation (DOTAX) how much money a certain proposal would bring in (if it’s a “revenue-raiser”) or cost (if it’s a tax credit or exemption).

The ‘rail skim’ lawsuit: We lost the battle, taxpayers won the war

A long time ago, in October 2015 to be more precise, the Tax Foundation of Hawaii sued the state. Why? Because at the time, the state was skimming 10 cents off every dollar that was being collected for rail, and it plopped the money into the state’s general fund, where it was spent on everything but rail.

Gut-n-Replace 2019

This week we’ll discuss a couple of examples from this legislative session of the controversial but commonly used technique called “Gut and Replace” where a bill is amended so much that it looks nothing like its former self.

‘Tension’ continues between lawmakers, judges

When we learn about our three branches of government, we’re usually told that the legislative branch makes the laws, the executive branch carries them out, and the judiciary branch interprets them. Each branch serves as a check and balance on the other two.