Newswatch

Newswatch

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Friday, January 29, 1999


Tanonaka, Sasamura named
to mayor's office

By Gordon Y.K. Pang, Star-Bulletin

Longtime newsman Dalton Tanonaka and veteran city engineer Ross Sasamura have been named to key posts in Mayor Jeremy Harris' administration.

Tanonaka is the city's director of the Office of Economic Development. A former television and print journalist in Hawaii, he most recently has been reporting on Asian business from Hong Kong and Japan.

He replaces Robert Nakasone.

City Council Chairman Mufi Hannemann, a former state economic development chief, has often been critical of the administration's economic development efforts.

Tanonaka, he said, "is going to need a lot of support from the administration if he's going to be successful and be able to justify continued funding for that office beyond this fiscal year."

Sasamura is the city's new director of Facility Maintenance. He has been assistant chief of the Automotive Equipment Service Division since 1991.

He will be responsible for the city's road maintenance, automotive equipment services and building and electric divisions. He replaces Jonathan Shimada.

Sasamura is president of Honolulu Clean Cities and the Hawaii chapter of the American Public Works Association.


Legislative budget holds steady for third year

For the third year, the budget for the Legislature and its agencies of about $19.2 million will not increase. "We're setting the example by holding our costs," said House Speaker Calvin Say (D, Palolo).

The appropriation bill for the 1999 Legislature passed the Finance Committee Wednesday and is expected to pass the House Monday, then move to the Senate.

The bill pays $12.2 million for the expenses of the House and Senate.

It also pays $2.8 million to fund the legislative auditor's office, which includes the state Ethics Commission. The budget for the Legislative Reference Bureau is $2.2 million and for the ombudsman's office, about $728,000; their budgets remained at last year's amounts.

There is also $1.2 million to pay for the legislative computer system.


Apana out of hospital, set to go back to work

WAILUKU -- Maui Mayor James "Kimo" Apana, who fractured both elbows in a fall, plans to return to work on Monday after being released from Maui Memorial Medical Center yesterday.

Apana, 36, said he was feeling well and was grateful to family and friends for their prayers, kind wishes, gifts and flowers.

Dr. Charles Soma, an orthopedic surgeon, said the injuries are responding well to therapy after the surgery.

Apana hurt himself after falling from a forklift at Ooka Super Market's parking lot last week. He was helping a store relative erect a tent for a sidewalk sale.

Kakaako cable outage blamed on faulty amp

A faulty amplifier is being blamed for a cable television outage in Kakaako this morning. Oceanic Cable said the 8:30 a.m. outage affected Halekauwila, Cooke and Curtis streets.

Spokesman Kit Beuret said it was unknown how many customers were affected but that the numbers could be significant since several high-rise buildings are there. Service was still out as of late morning.

Technicians were in the area to replace the amplifier, which helps move the signal along wires, Beuret said.

Marines will pay honor to retiring admiral

Adm. Joseph Prueher, who will retire next month as commander of the the U.S. Pacific Command, will be honored by Hawaii's Marines at a special sunset ceremony this evening at Camp Smith.

Prueher, who has commanded more than 300,000 soldiers, airmen and Marines in the Pacific for the past three years, will transfer to Washington, D.C., next month before he retires. He will be replaced by Adm. Dennis Blair at a Feb. 20 change of command.

500 will participate in aviation safety forum

More than 500 people are expected at an aviation safety conference from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and tomorrow at the Honolulu Airport.

Manufacturers, parts and avionics suppliers, FAA administrators and National Transportation Safety Board representatives will make presentations. The conference is conducted by the Federal Aviation Administration and the state Transportation Department.

Supreme Court disbars Kona attorney Smith

The Hawaii Supreme Court has disbarred Kona attorney Robert L. Smith, effective Feb. 25, because of use of a client's fraudulent affidavit, the Office of Disciplinary Counsel said.

Smith, 49, was admitted to the Hawaii bar in 1977.

Tapa


CORRECTION

A headline in yesterday's police column wrongly said a motorcyclist was dead after a crash on H-1 freeway's Pali Highway offramp. The 23-year-old man was in critical condition after the crash, and he is in fair condition at Queen's Hospital today.


See expanded coverage in today's Honolulu Star-Bulletin.
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Police, Fire

Police/Fire

By Star-Bulletin staff

POLICE

Man at Hickam accused of using car as weapon

Police yesterday arrested a 62-year-old man at Hickam Air Force Base for allegedly striking another man with his car.

On Wednesday afternoon, the suspect entered a military travel agency and began harassing a 54-year-old man who works at the business, police said.

At 5 p.m., the employee was walking in the parking lot when he was allegedly struck by a Dodge 4-door sedan driven by the suspect, police said. The man suffered ankle and knee injuries.

The suspect then drove away.

Yesterday, the suspect was seen driving on the base and was arrested.

The suspect, from Saipan, was booked for second-degree attempted murder.

Man, 43, charged with sexual assault of 3

Police yesterday charged a 43-year-old man with the sexual assault of three girls.

Joseph Ruizo, with no address, was charged with three counts of first-degree sexual assault and two counts of second-degree sexual assault, police said. He is being held on $300,000 bail.

The girls -- 12, 13, 16 -- told their mother they had been sexually assaulted by the man on numerous occasion from 1993 to 1998, police said.

Police begin digging in hunt for woman's body

MILOLII, Hawaii -- Police have reclassified the disappearance of a South Kona woman as a homicide and have begun digging in the ground at her Milolii Beach Lots home for traces of her, police said.

Michele Gloria Adam, 36, a clerk with the circuit court in Kona, was reported missing by her husband Richard Adam, 47, in June 1998.

She was last seen by coworkers at the end of the work day on a Friday and failed to appear at work the following Monday.

Three people hurt after car crosses centerline

LIHUE -- Three people were injured in a head-on collision on Kalihiwai Bridge on Kauai's North Shore last night.

Police said a 34-year-old Princeville woman was northbound on the bridge when her vehicle crossed the centerline into the path of a southbound car and hit it head-on at 9:37 p.m.

The woman was taken to Wilcox Memorial Hospital where she was reported in good condition this morning.

The driver of the southbound car, a 45-year-old Kilauea woman, and her 39-year-old woman passenger both were treated and released at the hospital.

Police are seeking witnesses to the accident. They said speeding and alcohol may have been involved.


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