OHA spending suit is dismissed by judge
A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit seeking to stop spending by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs on programs that benefit Hawaiians who have less than 50 percent native blood, according to an OHA press release.
But Judge Susan Oki Mollway's dismissal of the lawsuit on Monday does not mean the court battle is over, OHA said.
The plaintiffs can still re-file the lawsuit in state court or appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, said OHA chairwoman Haunani Apoliona.
"Judge Mollway dismissed the action based on a lack of jurisdiction," said OHA administrator Clyde Namu'o in the news release. "Though we are all pleased with the outcome, we realize that this is probably not the last that we will hear of this matter."
The lawsuit, Virgil Day, et. al. v. Haunani Apoliona, et. al., was filed by five native Hawaiian plaintiffs.
OHA receives about $15.1 million annual in ceded land revenues. It's annual operating budget is $37 million for programs that provide for the betterment of the conditions of all Hawaiians regardless of blood quantum.