State roundup for April 11


Waikiki condo hotel planned

HONOLULU (AP) — A local development partnership has pledged more than $1 million in community spending in exchange for the city’s permission to build a condominium hotel tower exceeding Waikiki’s height and density requirements.

The proposed project would raze the King’s Village retail complex and neighboring apartments to make way for a 256-unit condominium hotel.

The partnership involves BlackSand Capital LLC, Kobayashi Group and The MacNaughton Group.

They’ll be asking the City Council to allow the project even though it exceeds the height limit, setback restrictions and density limits for Waikiki.

To make it more attractive, the developers have agreed to spend $500,000 on Waikiki beach replenishment, $200,000 to help Waikiki’s homeless and $200,000 to keep Waikiki public bathrooms open after 10 p.m.

They plan to put $100,000 toward the construction of Americans with Disabilities Act improvements for access and for a bathroom at Waikiki Community Center.

The King’s Village project, which would have a multilevel tower with heights ranging from the current 240-foot height limit to a soaring 350 feet, has met with little community resistance so far.

Dam break case gets postponed

LIHUE, Kauai (AP) — A retired car dealer’s sentencing was delayed for a second time in a Kauai dam breach that swept seven people to their deaths in 2006.

James Pflueger’s new sentencing date is Aug. 28. Because of a medical condition, he was unable to travel from Honolulu to Kauai in January for his original sentencing date.

Pflueger pleaded no contest in July to first-degree reckless endangerment for his role in the Ka Loko dam break on his property. In exchange for the plea, prosecutors agreed to drop manslaughter charges.

Meanwhile, a petition by dozens of Kilauea farmers and residents has been filed in court asking that Pflueger’s sentence include orders to fix the dam and spillway.

One of the accusations against Pflueger was that the spillway — designed to keep water from flowing over the dam —had been covered.

Pflueger’s attorney, William McCorriston, couldn’t immediately be reached for comment Thursday.

The plea agreement calls for five years’ probation. At the sentencing, prosecutors can argue for additional conditions such as community service, a fine and up to a year imprisonment, according to the state attorney general’s office.

Hawaii, Bali to become sister states

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii and Bali are to become sister states.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie and Indonesian Consul General Hadi Martono will attend a signing ceremony at the governor’s chambers on Monday.

A reception featuring hula and Balinese dance will follow.

The Indonesian island of Bali is one of Asia’s top tourist destinations. Its beaches are favored by sun-seekers and waves are sought after by surfers. Balinese dance is a highly developed traditional art form.

 

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