INDEX - HEALTH ID# 0621-02



POSTED: 16 August 2006 -  6:00pm HST
Cesspools - Physically & Metaphysically

Runoff of soil laden water on northeast shore of Kauai

Sewage in Water & County Government
by Ray Chuan on 16 April 2006

“Hanalei Cesspools “flush” into Bay
I have been asked to forward this important announcement to my mailing list. The subject matter to be presented at this meeting is of importance to not just Hanalei residents, but to all who live at sea-level or near sea-level communities on this island.

Hanalei Watershed Hui Public Meeting “Hanalei Cesspools “flush” into Bay.

After nearly two months of steady rain, the ground is saturated and cesspools in Hanalei are unable to handle additional wastewater. Over 200 cesspools are “flushing” their contents into the groundwater which finds its way to the River and Bay. The Hanalei Watershed Hui has been conducting water quality sampling throughout this rain event and will report its findings at a Hui meeting, Thursday, April 20, 5:30 p.m. at the Hanalei Courthouse.

If you are concerned about your system in Hanalei or other areas of Kauai, come and learn more about the problem and discuss solutions.

For more information about this meeting or the Hanalei Watershed Hui, please visit or call 826-1985.”

The reality is that in a community at or near sea level raw sewage will be in the soil because the cesspool sits in ground water after any amount of rainfall. The lot behind my house in Hanalei, being a foot or more lower than mine, will show standing water after any significant rainfall. Last week I took a water sample in that standing water to test for enterococcus bacteria. The result came out at 333
units of entero per 100 milliliter of water, a value which is more than three times the value at which the national and Hawaii standards call for immediate closing of the site for recreational use.

Ethical practices of the Kauai County Ethics Board

A few days ago I had a letter to the Garden Island published in which I talked about the un-ethical practice of said Board. Since then the Garden Island published on its front the report that the Kauai County Ethics Board had placed the entirety of the report by the Hearing Officer the Board had invited from Maui to conduct a Contested Case Hearing on the complaints the Board had lodged against Police Commissioner Michael Ching. Unknown to the general public, and TGI presumably, a significant part of that report had been left off the website, and presumably also left out of the Ethics Board’s report to the County Council. What is on the web turns out to be just the Complainant’s recitation of charges against
Ching and its conclusion of law regarding the charges.

The Complainant, of course, is the Kauai Ethics Board. What is left out is the Hearing Officer’s Report on his conclusion, based on the Contested Case Hearing, on whether the charges against Ching constituted violations of the Code and Charter of the County of Kauai. I won’t bother you with the 22 pages that the Ethics Board put on its website; but I will attach the missing part of the Hearing Officer’s Report, because that obviously is what the Ethics Board didn’t want the public to know.

Click here to read Ethics Board's Hearing Officers Ruling

:In case your e-mail system would not open the attachment I copy below the last page of the missing document:

“The Complainant further contends that the process was unfair in the following respects:

(1) the opinion of Commissioner Gonsalves who had 34 years experience in law enforcement was ignored.

(2) Lieutenant Lum’s failure to act during the infamous “lap dancing” incident was ignored.

(3) candidate Lum’s negative background check was ignored.

(4)a proposed strategic plan from another candidate was not considered.

(5) a favorable petition on behalf of candidate Lum was accepted.

The evidence supporting these facts certainly tends to cast some doubt on the fairness of the selection process. Although this evidence tends to establish a
bias on the part of at least some Commission members, it does not establish any specific violation of the Charter or Code by Commissioner Ching individually.

For this reason, the Hearing Officer declines to conclude that the findings of fact set forth in Section (D) of Complainant’s proposed findings establish a particular violation of the Charter or Code by Commissioner Ching.

Respectfully submitted this 23rd day of February, 2006.
(signed) E. John McConnell, Hearing Officer”

The last paragraph certainly makes clear that the Hearing Officer did not think the Ethics Board’s findings of fact rise to a violation by Ching individually. Another item on this page – the reference to the infamous “lap dancing” incident – is
something the Ethics Board understandably wouldn’t want to have to elaborate on. The “incident” some of you may recall involved the arrest of a lap dancer by the Kauai Police, during which, when the dancer was held at the Police Department some members of the Department took pictures of the detainee with no clothes on, which led to severe disciplinary action against the officers among whom is an elected official of the Kauai County government. It is possible none of the current member of the Ethics Board knew what the “incident” was all about; but the Board’s lawyer from the County Attorney’s Office who is the wife of a Kauai police officer certainly would have known about the “incident”.

All I can say at this point is that members of the Lynching Party really ought to get smart and realize that there are a goodly number of honest and probably incensed workers in this county government who are whistle blowers. Judging by the amount of information that is coming out one might hazard the guess that at
least some of the whistle blowers possibly enjoy some level of protection by the feds. It will definitely be interesting to see how all this will continue to evolve.