Political File

News, notes and anecdotes
on government and politics

Monday, November 22, 1999

Rep. Oshiro’s
replacement to be
appointed soon

Gov. Ben Cayetano is about a week away from appointing a successor to state Rep. Paul Oshiro (D, Ewa Beach), who resigned recently to become a lobbyist for GTE Hawaiian Tel.

Cayetano said last week he has interviewed several people for the job but is still looking at others who may be interested. He expects to name someone next week.

"I'd like to give Paul Oshiro's replacement as much lead time as possible so this person can get into the work," Cayetano said.

Meanwhile, the governor believes the House gets high marks from the public but that the Senate has some problems. Senate leadership has been lacking in the last couple of years, and it is up the 25-member body to resolve it, he said.

The Senate last April failed to reconfirm Cayetano appointees Margery Bronster as state attorney general and Earl Anzai as state budget director.

"They surely must understand how the public feels about that particular organization," Cayetano said.

OHA HIRE: The Office of Hawaiian Affairs has hired Jerry Norris as its new federal liaison to help coordinate and advise OHA's efforts in Washington, D.C.

Norris, who has more than two decades of experiencing working with indigenous people, had served as executive director of the Pacific Basin Development Council, a nonprofit group formed to create economic development and growth in the Pacific Basin region.

His new job also includes monitoring congressional legislation that affects native Hawaiians.

GOV AWARDED: Gov. Ben Cayetano is a recipient of the 1999 Distinguished Alumni Award from the Community College League of California. He received the award last Friday.

Cayetano said that after nearly flunking out of Farrington High School, he went to the mainland in 1963 to pursue his college education.

"At the Los Angeles Harbor College, my education was as good as I could find anywhere," he said.

"It opened doors for me to receive a bachelor's degree from the University of California at Los Angeles and a law degree from Loyola Law School."

The league is a nonprofit group which has membership consisting of 71 local community college districts in California.

SCHATZ LAUDED: State Rep. Brian Schatz (D, Makiki) has received the president's award from the Hawaii Audubon Society for his work on Hawaii's environment.

Schatz, vice chairman of the Ocean and Marine Resources Committee, pushed legislation relating to rule-making on fisheries management, beach restoration and shark-finning this past legislative session.

Opponents of shark-finning in Hawaiian waters credit Schatz for bringing attention to the issue.

LEMAHIEU ELECTED: State Superintendent of Schools Paul LeMahieu has been elected to the board of directors of the National Board for Professional Teacher Standards.

The 63-member board was created in 1987 to establish national teacher standards and to assess and certify teachers who meet those standards.

"It is an honor to have a role in this national quest to set high teaching standards and to certify those exceptional educators whose knowledge and teaching talents place them among the foremost in their profession," LeMahieu said.

Hawaii teachers interested in pursuing national board certification have until Nov. 24 to apply for one of 10 subsidies of $1,000 to $1,500. The full application fee is $2,000.

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