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CITY AND COUNTY OF HONOLULU
MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING
SEPTEMBER 13, 2005
CALL TO ORDER: Chair Roy Wickramaratna called the meeting to order at 7:08 p.m. with a quorum present.
MEMBERS PRESENT: Roy Wickramaratna, Ed Gall, Mike Ellis, Sylvia Young, Clara Ching, Jeanette Nekota, Kalene Sakamoto, Pam Witty-Oakland, Pat Lee.
MEMBERS ABSENT: None.
GUESTS: Jennifer Waihee (City Deputy Corporation Counsel), Jay Ishibashi (Managing Director’s Office), Cynthia Rezentes (Waianae Coast Neighborhood Board No. 24), Jean Connolly, Tom Heinrich, Carolyn Golojuch, Linda Ure (Kailua Neighborhood Board No. 31), Michael Golojuch Jr., Patty Teruya (Waianae Coast Neighborhood Board No. 24), Jim Corcoran (Kailua Neighborhood Board No. 31), Georgette “Jo” Jordan (Waianae Coast Neighborhood Board No. 24), Maeda Timson (Makakilo/Kapolei/Honokai Hale Neighborhood Board No. 34), Mike Golojuch (Makakilo/Kapolei/Honokai Hale Neighborhood Board No. 34), David Lemon (Pearl City Neighborhood Board No. 21), Bill Woods (Kalihi Valley Neighborhood Board No. 16), L. Gary Bautista (Ewa Neighborhood Board No. 23), Jon Chinen (Kailua Neighborhood Board No. 31), Debbi Glanstein (Kailua Neighborhood Board No. 31).
STAFF: Baybee Hufana-Ablan (Executive Secretary), Michelle Kidani, Bryan Mick, Elwin Spray.
ELECTION OF NEIGHBORHOOD COMMISSION OFFICERS FOR THE 2005-2006 YEAR
COMMISSION CHAIR: Chair Wickramaratna opened the floor for nominations for commission chair. Commissioner Sylvia Young was nominated by Nekota; Commissioner Pam Witty Oakland was nominated by Lee. Ellis moved and Nekota seconded to close nominations; without objection, Chair Wickramaratna declared nominations closed. Young: (Young, Ching, Nekota, Sakamoto). Witty Oakland: (Gall, Lee, Witty-Oakland, Ellis and Wickramaratna). Chair Wickramaratna announced the vote of five for Witty-Oakland and four votes for Young and declared Commissioner Witty Oakland elected as chair.
COMMISSION VICE-CHAIR: Chair Witty-Oakland assumed the chair and called for nominations for commission vice-chair. Commissioner Sylvia Young was nominated by Nekota; Commissioner Mike Ellis was nominated by Wickramaratna. Wickramaratna moved and Nekota seconded to close nominations; without objection, Chair Witty-Oakland declared nominations closed. Young: (Young, Ching, Nekota, Sakamoto). Ellis: (Gall, Lee, Witty-Oakland, Ellis and Wickramaratna). Chair Witty-Oakland announced the vote of five for Ellis and four votes for Young and declared Commissioner Mike Ellis elected as vice-chair.
APPROVAL OF THE REGULAR MEETING MINUTES OF JANUARY 11, MARCH 15, MAY 10, JUNE 14 AND AUGUST 9, 2005: Chair Witty-Oakland asked for commissioner’s corrections on circulated Minutes for January 11, 2005; there were no corrections. Chair Witty-Oakland asked for commissioner’s corrections on Minutes for March 15, 2005; there were no corrections. Chair Witty-Oakland asked for comments on circulated Minutes for May 10, 2005; Ching distributed several correction pages for May 10, 2005. Chair Witty-Oakland asked that the Commission take action on January 11, 2005 and March 15, 2005 Minutes. As public input, Woods commented that Commission action on all minutes should be deferred due to a recent ruling from the State of Hawaii’s Office of Information Practices. Gall moved, seconded by Wickramaratna, to approve as circulated Minutes for Commission meetings of January 11, 2005 Minutes and March 15, 2005. Chair Witty-Oakland noted that four of the current Commissioners were not in office at that time but that all commissioners were eligible to vote. With no objection, Chair Witty-Oakland declared the January 11, 2005 Minutes and March 15, 2005 Minutes approved, 9-0-0.
Ching read a two-page statement of issues and concerns dealing with a May 10, 2005 discussion on the taking of minutes at a July 7th, 2004 Manoa Neighborhood Board meeting, including distribution of marked up pages from the Manoa Board’s minutes. Chair Witty-Oakland asked if the intent was to make the statement a part of the corrections to the May minutes; Ching said the issue was a presentation at the Commission meeting and could be added as a statement. Lee added that he also was uncertain if the last two paragraphs were corrections; Ching said they were issues for the May minutes. Gall asked Chair Witty-Oakland about Ching’s intent; Nekota said the objective would be to add the two-page statement to the May 10th minutes. Ching repeated that she wanted to add this statement to the minutes. Chair Witty-Oakland stated that Ching’s motion was to add the statement to the May 10, 2005 minutes and asked for a second. Wickramaratna noted that the issues were properly a part of the Manoa Neighborhood Board’s minutes and required action by the Manoa Board. Young suggested that the Commission should re-summarize the information statement and include the re-summarization as part of the May 10, 2005; Ching said the statement was a summary. Woods read from his statement, quoting a section on inserting items into minutes. Gall moved to incorporate the statement into the minutes of the May 10th meeting. Chair Witty-Oakland said she had not noted a second to Ching’s motion; Young said she made the second. Gall withdrew his motion. Chair Witty-Oakland stated the motion was to summarize and include the statement in the May 10th Minutes and that the maker of the motion was Ching and seconded by Young. Corcoran stated that it was not the motion. Ure said it was not the motion. Corcoran said it was not the motion. Ure said the motion was to include Ching’s entire summarization as presented. Corcoran said that it was to include the entire summarization. Young said that her suggestion to summarize did not have a second. Chair Witty-Oakland stated the motion, made by Ching and seconded by Young, was to include the statement in the May 10th Minutes. Reporting the vote on the motion, Chair Witty-Oakland announced the statement would be added, 9-0-0. Ching moved and Young seconded to approve the minutes of May 10th as amended. Chair Witty-Oakland announced the May 10, 2005 minutes approved without objection, 9-0-0.
Chair Witty-Oakland invited corrections to the June 14th Regular Meeting Minutes. Nekota offered the following, submitted partially as written notes:
· Page 1, under Approval of Minutes, correct the first sentence, “… May 10, 2005 until the next meeting. Nekota noted that the March 15, 2005 and May 10, 2005 minutes were distributed prior to the meeting and the Commissioners did not have time to review the minutes.”
· Page 2, add to item 2, add sentences “Nekota asked the Executive Secretary the status of the letter Ms. Timson delivered via Michael Gologuch [sic] to the Neighborhood board office? Reply unknown.”
· Page 2, add sentence to item 4, “The Executive Secretary stated returning the sound system will be the responsibility of the chair.”
· Page 2, substitute for the first sentence under Election of Officers, “Nekota questioned why this item was on the June agenda since the Commission officers do not take effect until August. Henrich [sic] verified this by reading the Neighborhood Plan.”
· Page 3, third paragraph should have adjustments made to the last phrase, to reflect “Hufana-Ablan noted that she had discussed the need for shorter meetings with Commissioners at her first meeting with them in January (prior to her being in office) and February 2005 (at a Commission Budget committee meeting).”
· Page 3, last sentence, change phrase “about NA job qualifications;” to “about NAS [sic] job descriptions and” and that, on top of page 4, “description” should be “descriptions”
· Page 4, under Consideration of Proposed Resolution, Nekota said Wickramaratna was listed as seconding the motion. Nekota said that, as Wickramaratna was the chair at that time, he could not second the motion. Woods said that Robert’s allows flexibility.
Ure suggested that proposed corrections to minutes be submitted electronically; Chair Witty-Oakland referred the suggestion to Nekota. Ching inquired about Nekota’s comments on the sentence on Page 3’s third paragraph, noting that Nekota had not made specific requests; Nekota said to take the line out. Chair Witty-Oakland reported that she is listing that the correction is to strike the last sentence (Commissioners asked to be in communication regarding plans such as the limitation on staff time; Hufana-Ablan noted that she had discussed the need for shorter meetings with Commissioners at her first meeting with them in January and February 2005.) Ching suggested that the Consideration of Fiscal Year 2006 Budget item be revised to “Ching asked at the Neighborhood Commission Budget Committee Meeting whether the Neighborhood Assistants personnel have adequate budget (salary support) for the neighborhood boards. At two Neighborhood Commission Budget Committee meetings, Michele Kidani said it was adequate.” Chair Witty-Oakland asked for electronic versions of corrections to be provided in advance of future meetings. There were no additional corrections. Without objection, Chair Witty-Oakland declared the June 14, 2005 Regular Meeting Minutes approved as corrected, 9-0-0.
Chair Witty-Oakland asked for corrections for the August 9 Commission Meeting Minutes. Young said the page 2 paragraph heading 2-Hour limitation on staff assistance for board and commission meeting should be corrected to remove the portion “and commission” since the item was never discussed by Commissioners. Woods pointed out that the title of the paragraph was the same as the August 9 published agenda; Young continued that it should be changed in the Minutes. Young also offered a comment to the Minutes under Executive Secretary’s report (page 4) to confirm that the intended suggestion of the Executive Secretary was that boards vote to place limits on oral testimony; Chair Witty-Oakland agreed that the intent was that boards take a vote. Nekota said that she had wanted reflected in the Minutes (add to last paragraph on page 1) a statement she had made: “Nekota stated for the record that two Neighborhood Office staff members, Marie Richardson and Tanya Goo, attended the July 14th 2005 Commission meeting, and the minutes were submitted by Elwin Spray.” Woods recommended the Commission deferral any action to approve minutes and discussed possible changes. Ure offered written correction to the July minutes that she wished to be included in the August minutes and pointed out that she was not bulleted in the minutes. Lee asked if speakers would publicly identify themselves for the record. Rezentes pointed that as the August 9 Agenda had actually included the phrase “and Commission” in listing the agenda item on 2-hour limit for staff assistance that it was proper to have it listed as the agenda title was shown when referring to the issue in the August 9 Minutes. Corcoran said the minutes should be checked against a transcript of the meeting. Lemon said he agreed with Corcoran. Bautista said sunshine law says summarize with person and what they said. Ure said changes should be made, including date typos, a written listing, that different agenda headings vs. minute headings (including that it was a revised agenda), that recess vs. executive session headings should be changed (including that the original agenda should be used), correct erroneous statement that Hufana-Ablan said the 2-hour limit on staff assistance would start on July 1 when she actually started it on June 1, each comment and commenter should be individually included and identified as should each written testimony. Ure commented that Hufana-Ablan had not satisfactorily answered a question on with regard to her attending board meetings as a visitor and not an evaluator. Corcoran said public comment is restricted by the Commission. Chair Witty-Oakland started asking for specific written corrections, with Corcoran interrupting the Chair to say that the minutes should be collated with what was recorded. Young pointed out date typos needed to be corrected.
Lee noted that Woods has made reference to an Office of Information Practice memo that Woods says was sent out this afternoon and that Lee has not read, and that therefore he moved to defer action on the August 9, 2005 Regular Meeting Minutes. Woods said deferral could not be done. Young seconded the motion to defer. Nekota stated that the flavor of the January 11, 2005 meeting was not reflected in the Minutes where security was requested as the result of profanity being used and that it was a very highlighted moment; explaining that minutes should reflect flavor of meeting. Chair Witty-Oakland asked for a vote on the motion. Glanstein interrupted to say that a motion should have an action date or time. Lee suggested that his motion could include the phrase “until the October 11, 2005 meeting. ” Chair Witty-Oakland restating the motion as “to defer action on the August 9, 2005 Regular Meeting Minutes until the October 11, 2005 and to have input from OIP” and asked for a vote on the motion. Ching discussed that she prefers the word postpone not defer and suggested that the August 9, 2005 Minutes as circulated be re-written; Chair Witty-Oakland said that there appears to be a need to consult with OIP to determine what parameters the Commission is bound to. Ching explained that the current draft of the minutes doesn’t reflect the flavor of the meeting. Chair Witty-Oakland declared the motion to defer passed without objection, with one abstention (8-0-1). Aye: Lee, Witty-Oakland, Young, Ching, Nekota, Sakamoto, Ellis and Wickramaratna. Abstain: Gall. Gall stated he was not present at the August meeting.
VERIFICATION OF RESULTS OF NEIGHBORHOOD BOARD ELECTIONS: Chair Witty-Oakland announced that the Chief Monitoring Officer (CMO) was not present and was planning to be at the next meeting. Chair Witty-Oakland said the item would be on the next month’s agenda. Woods asked about the process, saying he was bringing the question from Lynne Matusow; Chair Witty-Oakland explained that 100% of the election results were certified but that the Commission had yet to vote to verify the results. Corcoran asked about the implications of the lack of verification; Chair Witty-Oakland discussed the issue with the Deputy Corporation Counsel, with Waihee explaining that the Commission had several questions about the elections process that were being referred to the CMO, that there was no deadline verification or action if there was no verification. Corcoran questioned Waihee about her explanation and asked for a definition of verification. Chair Witty-Oakland said the issue would be discussed at the next meeting. Corcoran said that the Executive Secretary should be asked about the matter. Nekota asked if the two boards who were at issue had been sworn in with Waihee responding that they had been certified and sworn in. Chair Witty-Oakland asked if there was any objection to adding the issue to the next month’s agenda; there was no objection.
LIMITING ASSISTANCE TO 2 HOURS FOR NEIGHBORHOOD BOARD AND COMMISSION MEETINGS: Young asked if motions were in order. Chair Witty-Oakland said the issue was on the agenda for action and that motions could be made; she suggested that Commissioners could make recommendations or take action. Woods interrupted Chair Witty-Oakland twice, stating that there had never been any written policy on the 2-hour limit. Chair Witty-Oakland thanked Woods and returned to asking the Commissioners what type of action, if any, they wished to consider. Young said the Commissioners had not yet considered action, and suggested that a letter of recommendation might be sent to the Executive Secretary and to the Mayor, suggesting opposition to the 2-hour limitation. Ellis concurred, suggesting more study prior to implementation. Gall suggested that 2½ to 3 hours for meetings was fine. Lee requested more information on length of board meetings and cost savings; Ellis agreed that commissioners had some data but should get more financial information. Glanstein noted that the agenda item has two issues and asked if the issues would be taken as reject one/adopt one, reject both, adopt both or taken serially, or what; Chair Witty-Oakland said the issue would be determined as the Commissioners move on. Lemon suggested letting public go first and offered to testify. Ching asked about a table of Board meeting length hours; Hufana-Ablan stated the table was an incomplete draft that was not supposed to be distributed. Ching started to ask about the document; Chair Witty-Oakland said that the Commission office could be asked for complete data. Ching asked if the Executive Secretary had reached any conclusions on her 3-month trial period. Chair Witty-Oakland called a recess at 8:30 p.m., which lasted for 5 minutes.
Chair Witty-Oakland called the meeting to order. Nekota commented that prior Commission meetings have had minutes produced from tape and that Boards could do the same; Lee suggested a task force of both Commissioners and affected Board members could research these types of ideas. Ellis asked about the interim. Young said that the known hours of work should have sufficed to permit staff to work in a “flex” situation. Nekota suggested gathering data including cost of building rental. Glanstein asked if staff has been asked; Chair Witty-Oakland said no, with Lee suggesting staff input could be included. Chair Witty-Oakland summarized that the Commission had discussion on the possibility of eliminating the 2-hour limit, the need for accurate information, the possible use of audio tape, the possibility of a working group, the possibility of interviewing staff, the need to assess financial implications and asked the audience for comments on new ideas, recognizing that many had already offered comments. Woods said that by asking for new ideas the Chair was restricting his ability to offer public input. Timson offered that the Executive Secretary has suggested changing the agenda and the attempt is being made, including the Makakilo/Kapolei/Honokai Hale Neighborhood Board successfully trying a less-than-2-hour special meeting and recording it using an audiotape. Lemon said Pearl City Neighborhood Board is opposed to the 2-hour limitation. Bautista said his Ewa Neighborhood Board has tried to keep to 2-hour meetings but that it cannot always be done. Woods said he has not seen a written policy on 2-hour limits and that a policy should be addressed by the Boards and community. M. Golojuch (member, Makakilo/Kapolei/Honokai Hale Neighborhood Board No. 34) said a 2-hour meeting could be done, that the Makakilo Board has done it by placing important issues first and ending the meeting without finishing the agenda, but that the limit cannot always be achieved. Glanstein said that a one-size-fit-all doesn’t work, and emphasized that the board’s mandate is for the public to participate at board meetings. Rezentes reported opposition to the 2-hour limit, reporting her agenda tried to accommodate presentations, but that the meeting still went until 10:30 p.m. Corcoran said Kailua Neighborhood Board is opposed and was never asked about the 2-hour limit. Ure referred to an old copy of ‘duties of Neighborhood Assistant’ and said that the duties are published but may be revised, that she has asked for -- but has been denied due to privacy issues – the Board’s mailing lists, and that she has made a transcript of the last three Board meetings in order to have complete record. C. Golojuch suggested more input from regular board members, who are all volunteers. Lemon said that State issues need to be considered at board meetings. Woods commented that State personnel also needed to be at board meetings. Cocoran said the Plan says that boards also deal with federal issues. Glanstein reported that the multi-jurisdictional authority is in the Charter. Chair Witty-Oakland asked Executive Secretary Hufana-Ablan to comment; Hufana-Ablan reminded Board chairs to attend a chair’s meeting on September 26 where there will be an opportunity to further discuss issues, with Chair Witty-Oakland adding “or Board delegate.” Corcoran said Kailua Neighborhood Board’s chair could not participate because it had not been authorized by the board. Lemon said they already have their marching orders; Woods said more notice is needed. Young said more notice is good because chairs are not able to speak for the board without the board authorizing them to participate, the sunshine law requires notice for them and their board, and that board members should be participating in the re-writing of the Member Guidebook. Woods asked for approval of the Member Guidebook by the Commissioners as a policy for the board system. Rezentes noted that the Chair’s meeting letter did not define an agenda but was sent to board chairs, being mailed on September 8th. Lee noted that the event sounded like a talk-story dialogue; Hufana-Ablan agreed an open forum. Rezentes noted that if policy was to be discussed it should be on the board’s agenda. Woods interrupted Rezentes and said any item potentially on a board agenda should be known about before attending the meeting. Nekota said she read in the Charter that the Executive Secretary is for the Commission and Commission sets policy. Woods and Lemon agreed. Nekota said everyone should read the Charter. Woods said we did. Bautista said the chair’s letter said to him that the Executive Secretary was trying to talk with and network with all chairs and boards so she could present ideas to the Commission for the Commission to decide. Chair Witty-Oakland asked if the meeting could focus on the 2-hour limit agenda item.
Motion by Ellis, seconded by Wickramaratna: that this commission requests the Executive Secretary to immediately rescind her 2-hour limitation of staff assistance at regular Neighborhood Board meetings until sufficient data, input and clarification is gathered and received for this Commission to take any action for recommendation to the Executive Secretary in regards to this subject at hand.
Ching suggested amending by providing a deadline, Ellis said the intent was to “rescind indefinitely” to which Ching said there should be a deadline to provide information – say within 90 days. Woods said to let it die. Corcoran said if information is not provided there should be no action. Young repeated to add the word indefinitely. Woods said to give it to Rex.
Ellis restated the motion: “this commission requests the Executive Secretary to immediately rescind her 2-hour limitation of staff assistance at regular Neighborhood Board meetings indefinitely until sufficient data, input and clarification is gathered and received for this Commission to take any action for recommendation to the Executive Secretary with regard to the subject at hand;” and Chair Witty-Oakland continuing stating the motion: “and we ask for data to continue to work with her on future recommendations for action.” Chair Witty-Oakland asked for the vote and, with no opposition, announced it carried 9-0-0.
A comment was made that the agenda item included “commission” meetings. Chair Witty-Oakland asked if there was any wish for a resolution regarding the subject of “2-hour limitation on staff assistance for commission meetings” with no one suggesting a motion. A question was asked if the Commission should adjourn since the meeting was past two hours. Executive Secretary Hufana-Ablan said the staff limitation did not apply to Commission meetings. Gall pointed out that the key phrase in the motion to the Executive Secretary was that it was not a direction -- we cannot direct, all we can do is recommend. Woods interrupted Gall and said that the Charter does not prohibit the Commission from instructing the Executive Secretary and that if the Commission, in the new Plan, places the Executive Secretary as working for the Commission then the Commission will be able to have that authority. Chair Witty-Oakland said she will discuss the issue with the Corporation Counsel and will defer any discussion to next month.
EXECUTIVE SECRETARY’S REPORT: Chair Witty-Oakland asked for the executive secretary’s report.
Nekota moved to adjourn. Rezentes stated that a public meeting -- where the agenda has not been completed and the public remains to comment -- needs to recess to another meeting rather than adjourning. Chair Witty-Oakland ruled the motion out of order but accepted a motion from Nekota, seconded by Young, that the meeting recess and be continued, to reconvene on October 11, 2005 at 7:00 p.m. at Honolulu Hale.
Lee noted the Council Resolution 04-387 item and asked if it would be heard prior to the next Commission meeting; Chair Witty-Oakland said it would likely be on the Council’s September 28, 2005 agenda for adoption. Woods objected to the asking about agenda items without public input. Lee withdrew his question.
Woods then asked for Commissioner’s consideration of changing dates of future meetings to avoid conflicts with Charter Commission’s Tuesday’s meetings, with Chair Witty-Oakland saying a change of dates would be considered.
RECESSED MEETING: Chair Witty-Oakland thanked the audience for attending the meeting and, at 9:25 p.m., without objection, recessed the meeting until October 11, 2005.
Submitted by Elwin Spray, Neighborhood Commission Office staff
|Tuesday, October 11, 2005|