Categorized | Government, News

Council to reverse last month’s leadership reorganization


Council members listen to testimony during the June 16 meeting.  ( photo by Karin Stanton)

Council members listen to testimony during the June 16 meeting. ( photo by Karin Stanton)

Karin Stanton/ Contributing Editor

It appears the county council has ceased to function – at least temporarily.

In response to a lawsuit filed by West Hawaii Today, the council voted Wednesday to Council Chairman to write legislation that would reverse the leadership reorganization they adopted June 16 and void any and all business it conducted since then.

The council will meet Aug. 4 in Hilo to vote on that legislation and then move its regular committee schedule, where everything they considered since June 16 will be vote on again.

The Kona newspaper filed a lawsuit contending the actions by counci lmembers prior to the vote violated the state’s Sunshine Law, the reorganization is illegal, and any county business before the council since then was null and void.

Third Circuit Judge Ronald Ibarra is expected to rule at 4 p.m. Thursday on whether to grant a 10-day restraining order to prohibit the council from doing any business.

The council’s actions Wednesday and the legislation they directed Yoshimoto to draft likely will rectify two of the three points in the lawsuit. 

Outstanding will be whether any council member violated the Sunshine Law, which dictates government procedure. 

Violation found be to inadvertent generally result in a reprimand.

However, anyone found to have willfully violated the Sunshine Law could be subject to fines, removal from office or up to one year in jail.

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