We were caught on the drive home yesterday as traffic was backed up in both directions at the scene of a school bus accident in Waikane. The bus went off the road into the stream that runs along Kamehameha Highway and overturned. By the time we arrived on the scene, operators of two tow trucks were trying to figure out how to remove the overturned bus. Kahaluu’s Engine 37 was on the scene. It was quite a show and drew spectators from the lines of cars and homes in the area. I noticed that the K5 news incorrectly reported that the bus went off Kahekili Highway, which is actually a number of miles in the Kaneohe direction from the crash scene.
A very good story by Ricard Borreca in yesterday’s Star-Bulletin reported on behind the scenes action between Aloha’s bankruptcy filing and its abrupt end of passenger service. It was somewhat surprising to see how much was being done to prepare for the collapse that no one seemed to want to suggest publicly. We probably all should read Borreca’s story very carefully and consider why most of the action within state agencies went unseen and unreported at the time, and how the real story can be reported earlier when the next crisis hits.
If you were paying attention here, you would have known several weeks ago that Hawaii Reserves, the real estate affiliate of the Mormon Church, had abandoned (at least for now) its plan for a major housing project on the outskirts of Laie. I mentioned it here on March 19. The Advertiser reported it yesterday.
The Advertiser story quotes Hawaii Reserves CEO Eric Beaver:
Beaver held out hope for affordable housing in projects proposed by other developers.
“We are pleased that there are other development plans in the area that seek to address the shortage of affordable housing for the community,” he said. “We trust the residents will study these plans and support those projects that best reflect their interests.”
Manager’s Ridge and Malaekahana Hui West are two projects that include plans to build some affordable housing in Kahuku, but the numbers fall short of what HRI had planned.
The developer of Manager’s Ridge, above Kahuku High & Intermediate School, plans to build 104 homes on 58 acres, with 51 percent of them affordable.
But the story fails to note that Manager’s Ridge LLC filed for bankruptcy protection in September 2007 with some $4.6 in debts and no assets beyond its interest in the 58-acre property. I wrote about the bankruptcy in a Honolulu Weekly column back in January, and the company’s financial situation doesn’t appear to have improved since then.
As of the end of February 2008, the company still had zero income and had burned through most of a $100,000 cash infusion it received at the end of last year. It showed a balance of just $1,007.05 in cash available at the end of February, far short of what it needed for the monthly payment to its primary lender.
On March 20, 2008, the Office of the U.S. Trustee filed a motion seeking to convert the bankruptcy case from a reorganization under Chapter 11 to a liquidation under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code, citing the company’s failure to file reports with the Bankruptcy Court or to provide financial information requested by the Trustee’s office. If granted, the company’s remaining asset, the land in Kahuku, would be auctioned and the proceeds, if any, used to pay off debts.
There may be more to the story, but ignoring the Manager’s Ridge bankruptcy would certainly seem to leave the Advertiser story open to a lot of questions.
Another Friday and time for a few more photos of our fabulous felines at home in Kaaawa.
Ms. Harriet comes from the strong black and white gene pool in our part of Kaaawa. We’ve rescued five B&W kittens and still see quite a few cats with similar markings.
So click on Ms. Harry for this week’s photos.