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HSTA-R Hawaii District Council Minutes from Nov 23, 2010

December 10, 2010

HI District Council members having fun!

The following minutes are subject to change and approval by the Council.


Hawaii County Building Conference Room

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


            Present:  Wayne Joseph, Marlyn Akiona, Lois Shimizu, Arleen Yoshimura, Joe Tanaka, Gayle Ito, Myrna Watanabe, Betty Ann Yoshimura, Sharon Yanazaki, Stephen Ono, Lorraine Hora, Avis Mortemore

            Absent: Bettye Wakabayashi, Muriel Nishimoto, Lillian Takemura, Joyce Hirata, Jo Ann Iwane, Cynthia Niyati Brown

 Call to order:  President Wayne Joseph called the meeting to order at 9:15 a.m.

 Secretary’s minutes:  Arleen Yoshimura moved to accept minutes and Lorraine Hora seconded.  Minutes were approved.

 Treasurer’s report:  Report was circulated and  9/9/2010 entry was corrected to read $2584.  Myrna Watanabe moved to accept and Marlyn Akiona seconded .  Report was accepted. Treasurer Lois Shimizu will forward a clean copy of budget to President Joseph to be e-mailed to council members as there were many changes made. 

President’s report:  November 18 meeting reviewed the retirement issues.  There is talk of raising retirement age to 69 and creating a 6% national sales tax in addition to Hawaii sales tax.     * NEA is against all changes to Social Security 

* ERS has good news in that it reported 8% profit

* VEBA Will turn all records over to EUTF by December 13
                 -Hearing on December 7 of the lawsuit by against state to try to dismiss change over to EUTF

* Justin Wong reported that there are 100 people signed up for the government Relations committee

            * On December 10 HGEA, UPW, SHOPO will meet with HSTAR to discuss  COLA and various benefits and issues.  Firefighters have not accepted invitation to join discussion.

* Veteran’s Day Run/Walk at Liliuokalani raised $293 for Food Basket weighing  in with 356 pounds of food

* Big Island Labor Alliance now extending to retirees * All are urged to go on website and send in pictures for website

* President Wayne invited all to “Big Dog’s New Years Day 5K Run/Walk” – Begins at 9:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day from parking area of Coconut Island.  – For more information go to or call 969- 7400

Council member Steve Ono forgot to wear his blue shirt and takes a short nap


Ti-shirt Design for HSTA-R Big Island Chapter:   $400 grant from the state organization must be used for ti-shirts and there are several suggestions. 

 Next newsletters articles are due by December 1.  Lorraine Hora will put in contest for ti-shirt design will be open to all members.  Submit design for ti-shirt HSTAR Big Island Council deadline Friday, January 7th.  Suggestions for judges are Dick Mortemore, Earl Dela Cruz and Susan Palea.  The judges will  meet on Jan. 10 and choose design.  Wayne to send Avis Mortemore criteria submitted for the grant for the judges to read.

NEW BUSINESS:   Annual Membership Luncheon:  Vice President Marlyn Akiona reported that the luncheon will be held on February 10, 2011.  Speaker will be Lloyd Narimatsu.  Therewill be a 10 minute “de-stressing” yoga session as well.  Nani Mau is possible site and buffet menu includes stuffed salmon, oriental chicken, green peas and  shrimp  salad, tossed greens, mac salad, fresh fruits, corn, rice, sheet cake, coffee, tea and soft drinks. Price will be about $15 per person and $20 for guest. 

Committee Reports:

Newsletter:  December 1st is deadline for nomination forms for Big Island Council 3 seats.  Presently they are held by Sharon Yanazaki, Muriel Nishimoto and Bettye Ann Yoshimura.  State Delegate Assembly in April will be for seven plus alternate.  Two seats are already held by Steve Ono and Wayne Joseph.  Elected last year were Jo Ann Iwane, Arleen Yoshimura, Bettye Wakabayashi and Lois Shimizu.  Lorraine Hora is in charge of the election.  West Hawaii delegates are not automatic delegates and must run.  New business for next time might be possibly making West Hawaii delegate automatic.

 Community Services: Betty Ann Yoshimura reported that Hospice’s “ Light up Life” will be on Wednesday.  Those volunteering don’t forget to sign log sheets and wear HSTA-R shirts.  On Wednesday, March 16 the Blood Bank will be at Auntie Sally’s Luau House from 8-5 p.m.  There will be four shifts.  Refreshments are needed check with Betty Ann for sign up.  Blood Bank presented HSTA-R with a “Life Savers” award from Blood Bank. 

 Membership Committee had no report because Muriel Nishimoto was absent.

 COLA:  Joe Tanaka presented report that there was meeting with Mr. Wesley Machida, new ERS administrator. There are two proposals in preparation for the 2011 legislative session.  Joe thanked all on the members of the committee who work tirelessly to help make the PRA better for all retirees. 

 Retirement Issues: Steve Ono reported there is concern that at the end of the year “no enhancement bills “ dies and might be extended.  Much depends on the House of Representatives leadership. 

 Pre Retirement Cadre: ArleenYoshimura reported that the Kona presentations went well at Kealakehe and Konawaena.  Keaau Middle School also went well and E.B. deSilva has requested a presentation.   Please encourage retirees to join the NEA lifetime membership.

 Aloha Committee:  Gayle Ito reported that Myrna Watanabe, Betty Ann Yoshimura and Marlyn Akiona are to bring refreshments for the next meeting on January 27.

West Hawaii Community Club: It was reported for Jo Ann Iwane that West Hawaii Community Club will be making greeting cards at the Central Kona Union Church from 10-1 and there will be a potluck.  February will be the annual meeting and still trying to get NELH for the next meeting.


            * Lorraine Hora e-mailed legislators when the elections were done and informed them that the HSTA-R is now under Wayne Joseph’s leadership.  She expressed the concern for the straightening out of the EUTF/VEBA issue as well as the constitutional amendment changing the BOE from elected board members to appointed.  She received acknowledgement from Senator Russell Kokubun.  She e-mailed Representative Maizie Hirono expressing concern over the Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Social Security.  Representative Colleen Hanabusa sent a handwritten personal note. 

 * Mayor Kenoi attended the HARA meeting set up to look at retirees and the vision of the next 10 years.  Mayor called in staff and wrote down the concerns to be addressed.  Next HARA to go to Office of the Aging. 

 *  Schedule meeting with legislators on Saturday.

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