Grabauskas resigns as HART’s chief executive
February 23, 2018 | 79° | Check Traffic

Top News

Grabauskas resigns as HART’s chief executive

  • STAR-ADVERTISER

    Dan Grabauskas resigned as executive director and CEO of the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation today.

ADVERTISING

Honolulu rail’s embattled CEO and executive director Dan Grabauskas resigned today, the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s board chairwoman announced this morning.

Colleen Hanabusa announced the resignation after the board emerged from a private executive session at its regularly scheduled meeting downtown. Before today, the board had already spent more than 16 hours discussing the matter in private as part of Grabauskas’ annual review and given itself two 60-day extensions since April to keep those talks going.

Hanabusa said Grabauskas will get severance of $282,250 and that the board has executed a “separation agreement.” She said his last day on job is today but that the official separation date is in October.

Grabauskas, who had attended the meeting before the executive session, was not present when the resignation was announced.

Hanabusa also said that she will talk with Mayor Kirk Caldwell today about appointing Michael Formby, the director of the city’s Department of Transportation Services and a board member, as acting rail director while the board seeks a permanent replacement. Formby would step down from the HART board to take the interim appointment.

Hanabusa appointed board member Colbert Matsumoto as chairman of the search committee.

“We are very thankful to Dan for all of his years of dedicated service to the rail project,” Hanabusa said in a statement released by HART. “The project got off to a strong start because of his energy and enthusiasm. We wish him well.”

Grabauskas said in the HART news release, “It has been an honor and a pleasure to have worked on this transformational project for nearly 4-1/2 years. I believe in the project and its importance to the residents of Oahu, and by stepping aside today I hope to allow HART to move forward to ultimate success with fresh leadership.”

Grabauskas was in the second year of a three-year contract and earned $299,250 a year.

The estimated price tag for the rail project has skyrocketed in recent months as the recently reshuffled HART board spent hours at a time discussing Grabauskas’ job. The HART executive has attributed much of the escalating costs to the island’s red-hot construction market, which he’s pointed out has hit other building projects on Oahu as well. “It’s bad luck,” he said in June.

Nonetheless, some members on the board, led by Chairwoman Colleen Hanabusa, and other island leaders have sharply criticized Grabauskas’ guidance in the past couple of years, as well as HART’s seeming inability to anticipate or warn the public of the skyrocketing costs.

In 2015, Grabauskas and rail officials told state lawmakers that a five-year rail tax extension would likely be more than enough to complete the project. It now faces a renewed deficit of at least $8.3 billion, according to the latest official estimates.

“Every step along the way, we’ve missed the numbers,” Formby said in June. In recent months Grabauskas has kept a lower profile at HART board meetings, often deferring to agency staff to answer all of the board’s questions. He’s also deferred to Hanabusa and Formby to handle most media queries, even though he traditionally handled that task before Hanabusa became chairwoman.

In April, City Council Chairman Ernie Martin, who at the time was considering a run against Mayor Kirk Caldwell, called on Grabauskas to resign. The rail agency director has affirmed that he wants to stay on, however. Caldwell has criticized Grabauskas, but he hasn’t called for Grabauskas’ resignation, saying it’s up to the board to decide.

Caldwell, who appointed Hanabusa to the board, did encourage the HART body last spring to look “long and hard” at what he felt were recent communication snafus. Hanabusa, a Democrat, is running to replace the late U.S. Rep. K. Mark Takai in Congress.

Former congressman and City Councilman Charles Djou, who looks to unseat Caldwell in this fall’s mayoral race, held a press conference Wednesday ahead of the HART meeting to call for Grabauskas’ dismissal. “The leadership of rail has been a complete disaster … and I think the dismissal … will be an important initial step to rebuilding trust in City Hall with this disastrous rail project,” Djou said.

Daniel Grabauskas Resignation Letter

  Dan Gabauskas employment contract

348 comments

Leave a Reply

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. Because only subscribers are allowed to comment, we have your personal information and are able to contact you. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email commentfeedback@staradvertiser.com.
        • Vote for Djou, and you will be voting for someone who knows nothing about running or managing the City. He has no experience and no background in planning, building or construction. If you think things are bad now, with Djou, the construction jobs and development will dry up and will head back into the Great Recession, our city, public, and social services will be reduced, housing will become even scarcer, people will not be able to afford to live here, and our homeless population will escalate even higher. We will truly become a 3rd World State.

        • vextor – Basically posting comments to yourself as no one else believes you. No clue what is going on.

          You are still wearing your tinfoil hat, failing to see how the past mayors have made the Nei into the little 8th world it is today. Endless wasted money, tax increases, on and on.

          Djou will have none of that. Unlike Kirky boy, knows rail has never been on time, on budget. And thanks to his military time as an officer, has leadership qualities Kirky boy will never match.

          A vote for Kirky boy is a vote for the status quo. Pushing the Nei down to a little 10th world.

        • The “liberals with the brains and vision” put us in the hole to the tune off $8.1+ BILLION. Wonderful vision Sandys.

        • localguy, you say I am posting to myself, however all the anti-rail people must be reading my posts, because I am getting a lot of vile and vicious reactions. I must be getting to them.

        • vector – Actually the other posters are following my lead in trying to educate you. A group effort.

          Sad to say we are not having much luck as you are not learning anything. Yet we will continue to educate you.

          Again no need to thank us. It’s what we do.

      • I’m in favor of eliminating “Career” politicians.
        If elected… serve your term then get a real job in the private sector.
        This should eliminate the “Good Ole Boys/Girls Club”.

        • And career professionals while you are at it. Too many teats on a boar in City Government and there’s no way you can get rid of them. Just ask the FBI. Useless career professionals as Loretta says.

        • Well if rail is so bad, while does our state have the lowest unemployment rate in the country, and a booming construction industry, and a high Gross Domestic Product, one of 5 highest in the country, and a booming economy and increasing State and tax revenues. Argued with those facts. All happening during Mayor Caldwell’s administration and during Grabauskas tenure as CEO of HART.

        • I rather have educated, experienced, and hard working professionals running the City than a lot of know nothing blabber mouths, who have too much time on their hands, and who blog a lot of slander and attacks on our leaders, rail officials, the Construction unions, PRP, and anyone who advocates and supports rail

        • Vectum: One word for low unemployment rates due to favorable exchange rates versus the USD – RETAIL.

        • vector – There you go again with your utter shibai. Let me set you straight again. And as usual, no need to thank me. Correcting rookie posters is what I do.

          – In comparing Hawaii’s GDP to the other 50 states it rates as number 42. Basically in the gutter as it always has. https://wallethub.com/edu/states-with-the-best-economies/21697/

          While the Nei’s employment rate may be lower, the tourism based economy can’t support a wealth of good paying jobs. No high tech unless you work for the Feds. State has always rated low in this area. As shown by how backwards and behind the times state agencies are.

          Nei is 8th world at best.

        • vector – Sad to say the city and state have never had professional management. Hence the reasons for so many taxpayer money pits like pensions, infrastructure, education, and the latest, rail.

          Proven by how many times the Feds have had to step in and clean up the debacles these clueless bureaucrats have made. Over and over and over, failure after failure.

          The Nei is on track to follow Puerto Rico in declaring bankruptcy in the coming years unless some major changes are made. As in not reelecting Kirky boy. A proven failure.

        • I rather have a career doctor than one that just graduated from medical school or does not have a degree.

        • Localguy, our economy does not depend solely on tourism. The construction industry and development, and the military, are the major components of our economy.

        • vector – Tourism is the leading source of funds for Hawaii’s economy, always will be. Other areas are just a smaller part of the pie, do not play into the economies of the other islands. A point you completely failed to comprehend.

          Lets not forget what happens when the military deploys in large numbers as they frequently have.

          Again no need to thank me. It’s what I do.

    • Not a surprise. What is a surprise is how long it took to fire this inept and expensive journeyman. He was fired in his earlier assignment in Boston we were told. I hope that we can get out of this terrible project somehow.

        • His contract specified a year’s pay if he was fired without cause. Resigning is not being fired. It would seem that the HART board made the offer to reduce litigation, much as the UH regents do with all of our ousted football coaches.

        • HE DID IT AGAIN!!!!!! GRABUSHKAS WAS LET GO FROM HIS LAST JOB IN BOSTON AT THE BIG DIG AND GOT A BIG SEVERANCE- HE DOES NOT HAVE TO DO GOOD WORK, JUST GET THE PROJECT IN SEVERE DEBT AND COMES OUT WITH TONS OF MONEY! WHAT DO YOU CALL A PERSON LIKE THAT?!

        • He also resigned from the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) and like here, received a $327,487 severance pay. Basically a track record of starting with big projects, then willfully failing to professionally manage them. Basically we hired damaged goods. No elected bureaucrat did their due diligence to protect taxpayers.

          “Former MBTA general manager Daniel Grabauskas said the transit authority tried to keep his $327,487 severance secret when he agreed to resign two years ago, but he refused to sign an agreement keeping it confidential.”

          http://archive.boston.com/business/articles/2011/05/11/former_t_chief_refused_to_keep_exit_pay_secret/

      • Who are you calling inept. Djou is an amateur and rail saboteur. He knows nothing about running or managing the City. No experience or background. He knows nothing about planning, design, engineering, construction and building.

        • “He knows nothing about planning, design, engineering, construction and building.”

          Neither does kirk.

        • Neither did the Mufster or Caldwell.

          Djou does have one quality none of the three baboozes every has. He served as a military officer, does know leadership, integrity, honor, putting the needs of others before his.

          A good leader will surround himself with the smart people, the experts in running the city/projects. He will get all the assistance he needs.

          Leadership 101 for all of those who whine like they were gut shot and never served.

        • Kirk, has done pretty well running and managing the city when he was with Hanneman, and now as Mayor. He has accomplished a lot, and would not have been able to do it without the education and background. Kirl has a degree in Urban Planning, besides others.

        • Seriously, Vectum…what’s your stake in this shill??? Such PASSIONATE defense of Cadwell…Do they hear you typing madly on your keyboard down the hall there, thus earning your paid-by-comment salary??

        • Caldwell had his chance, time to move on. Djou is the only one that has a vision of common sense. Time to put politics on the wayside and serve the public as it was meant to be instead of focusing on self interests.
          This train wreck is totally out of control and no one has a clue of what this is going to cost worst yet the cost of maintaining it. Years of squeezing the public of money that could be better spent elsewhere. Soon the Board of Water Supply will present a proposal to again increase the sewer and water fee’s which has skyrocketed over the years.

        • Keolu, you are included with Djou as an inexperienced know nothing about planning, transit, engineering, and construction

      • Another 1/4 million out the door. Don’t need it, can’t afford it. And the politicians still haven’t dropped the other bomb, how much it would cost to operate and maintain this white elephant.

        • HECO is running out of space on the grid for people with surplus solar energy. HECO just signed an agreement with the Navy to build a thousand acre solar farm out in West Lock. Floating solar turbine are being proposed off of Oahu. Another solar farm is being built north of Koa Ridge in Waipio. HECO will have our State with 100% renewable energy by 2040. There will be a lot of renewable energy for the metro operations. We are leaders in the nation in renewable energy generation.

        • shopaholic, you are a vile and ugly person. You are at the same vulgarity as Trump and the fascist Tea Party. Did you know, the National Conference of Mayors proclaimed Honolulu, “the Most Livable City in the Nation”, thanks to Mayor Caldwell.

        • Vector says: “shopaholic, you are a vile and ugly person. You are at the same vulgarity as Trump and the fascist Tea Party. Did you know, the National Conference of Mayors proclaimed Honolulu, “the Most Livable City in the Nation”, thanks to Mayor Caldwell.”

          1) Please dial back the personal insults.

          2) That “the Most Livable City in the Nation” award came from the trash company that built the H Power plants. They awarded one to Beverly Hills too. Mayor Caldwell had nothing to do with that award, nor for that matter, does that award have anything to do with Honolulu being a livable city.

          Don’t believe me? Google “the Most Livable City in the Nation” and then try to find Honolulu.

        • vector – Wrong again as usual. Have to give you credit for being so dependable. But let me correct you again.

          There is no way HECO is going to have all islands of the state on 100% renewable energy by 2040. Especially with their foray into PV. You and everyone else fail to understand how much power demands will have grown in 24 years. How many new homes, hotels, condos, businesses, on and on. Not to mention PV power drops during the cloudier, shorter winter days when more power is needed.

          And lets not forget the power source for rail has yet to even be identified, construction started. Next is powering all the aircon units on our schools. Again power is needed for cloudy times.

          Compared to the civilian Nei, military bases have taken the lead in energy conservation and production. This is saving HECO big time. Military is saving taxpayers big time.

          Notice how no one in the Nei has even bothered to look at what Japan has done. In 2015 the average home owner, for about $16.7k, could purchase and install a fuel cell power generator to cover the majority of a home’s power needs. Larger units will completely power the home. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-15/fuel-cells-for-homes-japanese-companies-pitch-clean-energy

          Sad to say once again the Nei is playing catch up. Well,

        • vector – Wrong again with, “Did you know, the National Conference of Mayors proclaimed Honolulu, “the Most Livable City in the Nation”, thanks to Mayor Caldwell.” They are not experts in this field, no standard metrics, just like to talk. Here is what the real experts had to say:

          – Feb 2016 The Fiscal times posted the 25 most livable cities in the USA. No city in Hawaii made the list. #1 is Rochester, MN

          – 2016 Livability posted the top 100 best places to live. Honolulu placed 37th. #1 is Rochester, MN

          – Forbes listed the top 100 livable cities in the USA. Honolulu rated 3rd #1 is San Francisco.

          Again no need to thank me for educating you again. It’s what I do.

        • Kalaheo1, you better read the SA more carefully. Honoulu was proclaimed the most livable city by the National Conference of Mayors.

        • vector – Read my post right above this one. Notice how the real city rating experts rated Honolulu. Kirky Boy had nothing to do with this. He hasn’t got a clue how to work the homeless and so many other issues.

          Again no need to thank me for educating you. It’s what I do.

        • Perfect position for Hanabusa. Appoint Fornsby. Ask for federal extention. Honor the current Airport contract. Start the accelerated” concrete fabrication second branch.Demand the Middle Ala Moana contractor to preliminary bids. Ask IGE to extend GET. Get elected to Washington and make you buddy Hillary loosen the wallet for the HART transit.

      • Localguy, just argue with the facts. Lowest unemployment in the nation, booming construction industry and development, 2nd highest in the nation for GDP, booming economy and prosperity, record State and City tax revenues. Your distortions and fabrications do not stand up to the facts

        • Localguy, you seem to have all the answers. What are you doing to address homelessness, and housing and rental affordability, instead of just blogging

        • vector – If I did what would happen to our search for knowledge? Better to let others learn and grow.

          That said, working with other cities in the USA and around the world is the way to go. So many smarter minds out there than on the Nei. We could take their best ideas and adapt to our use. Yet the Nei continually tries to reinvent the wheel, wasting taxpayer’s money, further making the Nei the laughing stock of the world.

          No need to thank me. It’s what I do.

    • This admission of failure is not just about his personal incompetence. The real problem here is rail itself, which no-one can fix because it was the wrong solution from the beginning. Sure Grabby could have done a much better job being honest with the public, but the colossal train wreck is really the fault of Mufi and Kirki, who should also both be banished. Building an elevated heavy rail never made sense for Honolulu – it is not effective and way too expensive for our small city. So let’s hope Kirki soon follows Grabby out the door, bye bye and good riddance.

      • The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority asked grabby to step down. They attempted to make the transition peaceable, so they did not mention the year’s severance pay that they agreed to pay him. grabby, to embarrass the MBTA board released that fact to the media.

        Reason for asking him to leave was that according to one MBTA board member, after an initial honeymoon period, grabby had become more and more ineffective. Same appears to have happened here. Amazing that the HART board in its search for a HART director, or even cladwell, did not bother to research why he was let go from his previous position.

      • worldtraveler, building an elevated rail system makes a lot of practical sense. The metro does not interfere and interrupt the traffic on the streets belong, does not have to stop at intersections and traffic lights, therefore making the ride faster and the trains more frequent. Above grade metro also avoids most of the buried utilities, and is less prone to on grade flooding and tsunamis. The Bangkok Sky train metro network is also elevated, the views of the city from the metro are really stunning. It has a very heavy ridership of children, students, laborers, business and office people, and tourists. It also has a stop at the Airport. I have also traveled the world, just got back from France. The metros in French cities really have helped to lower the number of vehicles in the denser, centralized areas of the city. People are leaving their cars on the outskirts of the city centers and riding in on the metro. Many streets in the main part of the city have become pedestrianized malls with hardly a car in sight. Without the all the vehicles, the squares, plazas, pedestrianized streets have a lot of foot traffic and activity, with shops, restaurants, cafes, bars, hotels. And the pedestrianized streets, plazas, squares are also free of noise, vehicle exhaust, dust and dirt. They are really pleasant, preserving a lot of their historical charm and ambience

        • Arguments that try to justify our rail by comparing to other cities, like Bangkok with a crowded metropolitan population of 14 million, show how ignorant and desperate local rail boosters are to try and justify this monster. Of course metro systems are useful and work fine in large densely populated cities, which I have experienced in some 50 places, but we are not that kind of city. What other city of one million is building an elevated heavy rail? None. We are building it only because of our unique political system controlled by a small one-party clique, who are shielded by the conflicted monopoly newspaper. Our politicians are either corrupted by the millions spent on their behalf, as in the last mayoral election, or they are just plain ignorant about how the rest of the world functions.

        • What’s your stake in this, Vectum???

          Honolulu pretty much has no charm or ambience save for a couple of spots in the capitol neighborhood. DEFINITELY NOT Ala Moana or Krakaako…

          You saying rail would cut off “average locals” main source of recreation: cruising Kalakaua in Waiks on their motorcycles or lowered, loud cars on the weekend if it’s to become pedestrianized????

        • Shopoholic, Waikiki, KuhionBeach, Kapiolani Park, Magic Island, Ala Moana Park, have a lot of charm and ambience. Surferso can take their surfboards on the metro and get off at the Ward metro station or the Ala Moana metro station and surf off of Kakaako Waterfront Park.

        • Oahu is an island.

          We need to start at that point to educate rail opponent. Then’s an usban core planned to run along the edge of a mountain range that blocks out car traffic.

          Conclusion. Geography thrumps a small population.

          The other solution is urban sprawl.

        • Trying not to bust a gut laughing here…

          “Surferso can take their surfboards on the metro and get off at the Ward metro station or the Ala Moana metro station and surf off of Kakaako Waterfront Park.” ~Vectum

          Surfers gonna haul that board from home to a station, get on, find the one “special” car at the end for bulk items like bikes and surf boards, get off, find a bus or walk a mile or two (hauling that board), surf several sets, then repeat backwards??? Go through ALL that C * R ~ a – p just to surf Kakaako??????

          I think NOT. Especially since MIDDLE STREET will be the end station.

    • “…the board…Hanabusa, and other island leaders have sharply criticized Grabauskas’ guidance in the past couple of years, as well as HART’s seeming inability to anticipate or warn the public of the skyrocketing costs.”

      The blame belongs to the founders, Mufi, Caldwell, etc., who did ZERO research but told us it would cost only $2.7 billion.

      Grabauskas’ main mistake may have been to accept this position. On the other hand, getting nearly $300,000 yearly to make public statements and to have people post insulting comments on the SA site ain’t a bad deal at all.

      • It’s not a train wreck, even if you want to tear it down. The rail guide way has already reached the main gate at Pearl Harbor. The Rail guide way has been contracted out to reach Middle Street Bus Transit Station. I say great. The rail Operational Center and Maintenance Yard in Waimanu are near completion. And I actually like the guide way. I tis less obtrusive than all the freeways, overpasses, underpasses, on and off ramps of the H-1, H-2, Airport viaduct, etc. Build the metro to Ala Moana Center, and all 21 metro stations

        • You sound like Peter Carlisle. News flash: Carlisle got demolished in the Primary.

          Wake up, Vector! There’s no money left for your proposal. HART spent it all!

        • Vectum sees ukuBS and weewili have surrendered but he feels it’s his duty to defend rail’s “honor”

        • vector – We do not have a metro. We do not have anything. Sad to say you are out of touch again.

          Again no need to thank me for educating you. It’s what I do.

    • You did not read to today’s article on the booming construction industry in Hawaii. We had the second highest growth in state Gross Domestic Product in the nation. With construction adding 5.9% to the GDP. Every year since 2007,our construction industry has been growing, and we are one of the top five states every year. The construction growth is being driven by rail metro investments and construction as well as multifamily housing, hotels, renovations. Eugene Tian, chief economist for the State Dept. of Planning and Economic Development said, “We know construction in Hawaii last year was a record year. It’s the fastest-growing industry in the State. Construction is not only adding value to the current year, but will contribute to the economy for many years to come.
      Thank you Mayor Calwell and Grabauskas for creating and supporting the conditions for the rail construction and other development that have created more jobs yearly, increased our GDP, and made our economy one of the best performing in the nation and one of the most prosperous

      • vector – As usual, all talk, no credible references to back up your claims. Let me set you straight again. And as usual, no need to thank me. Correcting rookie posters is what I do.

        – In comparing Hawaii’s GDP to the other 50 states it rates as number 42. Basically in the gutter as it always has. https://wallethub.com/edu/states-with-the-best-economies/21697/

        While the Nei’s employment rate may be lower, the tourism based economy can’t support a wealth of good paying jobs. No high tech unless you work for the Feds. State has always rated low in this area. As shown by how backwards and behind the times state agencies are.

        Nei is 8th world at best. No need to thank me for educating you. It’s what I do.

  • Charles Djou actually created the mess known as HART. Now, Charles Djou should leave public life and retire in disgrace. Djou’s legislation creating HART gave Grabauskas the blank check he’s been spending for the past five years. This is on DJOU.

      • Read all about it, Djou defenders: http://conta.cc/2bqkPjc

        You should be embarrassed that you don’t know that Djou is the architect and founder of HART.

        What kind of Republican decides to create a new government bureaucracy and give it a blank check??

        Djou created HART. Accept it. The facts are indisputable. Djou gave HART a blank check. Djou is more to blame than most.

        • Djou designed the hiring process which led to the hiring of Grabauskas. Read the legislation written by Djou that created HART. Democrats on the City Council and the Democrat mayor get to pick the board members. Djou, the architect of HART, decided that unelected rail industry yahoos should call the shots in the hiring of HART’s top exec. And that’s ALL they can do. No oversight. No accountability. It’s a farce and a disaster. Just the way Djou wrote it. Plus, Djou gave HART a blank check, with ZERO restriction on how much could be spent to build and operate rail. So much for the pricetag promised to voters. We’re now up to $11 billion.

        • The delusion is believing Djou is any different. He just told Demby Fawcett of Civil Beat that he wants to build heavy rail all the way to Ala Moana Center.

        • @Eric Ryan: You seem to be misinformed. Djou did not write the legislation by himself. It was introduced by Djou, Anderson, and the City Council Chair Todd Apo. It was approved unanimously by the council, so for you to claim that it’s only Djou’s fault is an outright lie. If you disagree, then read the document you posted. It says it in black and white. LOL!

        • @creative721, again, what kind of Republican would have anything to do with creating HART and giving it a blank check plus no accountability? Apparently, Djou is your kind of “Republican”. A weak-minded, go along with the Democrat crowd, let’s give the Rail Cartel what it wants kind of “Republican”. Now you’re counting on this wimp to be the Great Reformer of City Hall?!? You are delusional.

        • @Eric Ryan: The only reason why I would even consider voting for Djou is because he promises not to raise taxes at all to further fund this project. If it were up to Caldwell, he would keep raising the GET like there’s no tomorrow to fund his pet projects and to further line his pockets (as if getting paid $200-299k a year to be a board member of Territorial Savings while abusing his vacation time to hold such a position). If there were any other person that was running for Mayor that promised not to ask for any more money from the tax payers, I would be all for that person. Unfortunately, he/she doesn’t and never existed during this race, so I am left with few choices which is to pick the poison that won’t bankrupt the city like Puerto Rico.

        • @creative721, you are pretty gullible about Djou and taxes. Djou just told Denby Fawcett of KITV and Civil Beat that he wants heavy rail to be built to Ala Moana Center. He also wants to build transitto UH Manoa and to Waikiki. Yet on numerous occasions, he has admitted he knows that the project runs out of money at Middle Street. The only way forward is with more taxes which politicians never admit to before an election. Don’t be gullible. The PRP-controlled City Council has more than enough votes (they only need 6) to override Djou’s veto of taxes or anything else. Also, Djou’s HART legislation amended the City Charter. So HART and its mission of building 34-miles of rail is a PERMANENT part of our lives. Don’t be deluded by Djou’s shibai. It would be great if rail could be stopped and improvements were made to the highways which cause congestion for the 95% who commute by car. But Djou is just trying to say whatever he can to get elected even though (1) he is legally stuck with rail unless his HART is repealed; (2) he is politically stuck with a PRP city council; and (3) he has shown himself to be easily co-opted by Democrats.

        • @Eric Ryan: So you’re saying that we should all vote for Caldwell? The guy who single handedly dismantled the Ethics Commission through the appointment of 3 former judges and a chief legal council that basically cut the budget of the Ethics Commission and subjected the entire staff of the Ethics Commission to report what they are doing every 6 minutes? The guy that takes vacation every single month for 2 hours to attend a board meeting at Territoral Savings and makes significantly more than his salary as Mayor (Territorial is paying him somewhere between $200-$299k a year)? The guy who told the Legislature last year that if you extend the GET for 5 more years, we will have all the money that we will need to finish rail to Ala Moana and then six months later, he needs another $1.5 Billion? Give me a break Eric Ryan!!! I would rather give Djou 4 years as Mayor to see what he (Djou) can do instead of giving another 4 years as Mayor to a guy we already know that we can’t trust (Caldwell). LOL!!!

        • creative721 Hey, vote for Djou. Just don’t imagine him to be a white knight riding over the hill. He’s an opportunistic RINO who bears as much blame for where we are as any other politician. Pretending he’s our savior is nuts. His promises are bogus and cannot be realized. Until and unless HART is repealed, the City agency has a mandate to build 34-miles of rail. Djou does NOT fart rainbows, even though you think they smell nice. Vote for him having realistic expectations. So when the PRP council overrides his tax veto, there’s nothing he can do. When PRP sues because Djou tries to keep HART from getting its money, he will lose in court. Djou should be leading the effort to repeal HART (his biggest mistake). Not lying to people that he can change history with his election.

        • @Eric Ryan: You seem to be avoiding the question. So are you saying that everyone should vote for Caldwell then?

        • Liz Guthrie, I mean creative721, you are such a ‘mean mango’. Yes, everyone should vote for Djou because he will tell us what we want to hear before the election and then watch helplessly while Democrats anally rape us after the election.

        • Actually, this is typical of cladwell the naked emperor. He was quick to accept the verdict of Council Chair Martin, that Horner and grabby were at fault. Peculiarly, Horner said he was only the messenger. Since moofi and cladwell the naked emperor made the appointment, does that mean that they were the message-senders?

          As cladwell did with Horner, he is trying to do to Djou. Yup, blame others. Leaves the naked emperor looking squeaky clean, the ivory soap look. Yup, squeaky clean.

        • Hey Mitt. What happened to Liz Guthrie, I mean creative721 ?? She disappeared. Gosh, she’s such a ‘mean mango’. She was about to explain how Djou had absolutely nothing to do with founding HART.

        • Awwwww, sorry Liz. You’re gonna have to contact Star-Advertiser to make up a new fake name so you can continue your Djou advocacy instead of turning WordPress templates into websites. Shucks!!

        • “”EricRyanisaCrook.com reached out to all of Eric’s victims and others involved, asking for responses and any information about Ryan they could provide. The following information has been received via email over the last several days, has been organized and facts have been researched and confirmed . There is more to come, it will be posted as its reviewed. (see sources)

          In the early 1990’s Eric Ryan was the first student in Chaminade history to be convicted of forging student signatures and election ballots thus beginning his career of graphic design so he continue forging documents. He later took Chaminade to court for defamation of character.

          About the same time he also tried to sue Andy Anderson for defamation of character and lost. A judge doesn’t believe him and the complaint is dismissed.

          In 2008, DTC Investments took Eric Ryan to court for not paying his office rent at 1001 Dillingham Blvd STE 303, Honolulu, HI 96817. He claims he paid them. A judge doesn’t believe him and orders him to pay $10,851. (Public Record, Civil court document 1Rc08-1-10801)

          Currently capitol one and the Kai Makana community association is also in collections with Ryan who has not paid his bills owed to them.””

          http://www.hawaiifreepress.com/ArticlesMain/tabid/56/ID/4730/Alleged-Eric-Ryan-Victims-Speak-out-on-New-Website.aspx

        • OMG, I ALSO READ THAT ERIC RYAN KILLED A MAN IN COLD BLOOD, KICKED A PUPPY, PUSHED OLD PEOPLE INTO TRAFFIC, AND THEN STOLE A CHARLES DJOU T-SHIRT OFF OF SOME GUY NAMED KEOLU. THIS INFORMATION COMPLETELY DIVERTS FROM DJOU’S RESPONSIBILITY FOR FOUNDING HART. BUT, BACK TO ERIC RYAN, I ALSO READ THAT HE ALSO SWUNG KEOLU’S CAT OVER HIS HEAD WHILE MAKING RACIST STATEMENTS ABOUT EVERY NATIONALITY. IN FACT, I READ THAT ON A WEBSITE SOMEWHERE. OMG. OMG. OMG. OMG.

        • This is what was significant about Eric Ryan and said twice in the article”

          “A judge doesn’t believe him”

          “A judge doesn’t believe him”

          I’m not a judge but I don’t believe him either.

        • LIKE KEOLU, I BELIEVE EVERYTHING I READ ONLINE. KEOLU IS POSTING FROM OCCC FOR HIS CHILD MOLESTATION CHARGES. BUT HIS OPINION IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS EVERYONE ELSE’S. BUT LET’S TALK ABOUT ERIC RYAN. THAT WILL DISTRACT FROM CHARLES DJOU’S RESPONSIBILITY FOR CREATING HART IN THE FIRST PLACE. WE ALSO NEED TO DISTRACT FROM DJOU’S FLIP-FLOPPING — FIRST STOP AT MIDDLE STREET, THEN WELCOME CALDWELL WANTING TO STOP AT MIDDLE STREET, THEN PRETEND THAT DJOU NEVER WANTED TO STOP AT MIDDLE STREET, THEN TALK ABOUT ERIC RYAN. KEEP GOING “KEOLU”. YOU WILL GET A SECOND DJOU T-SHIRT FOR YOUR EFFORTS!!

        • I guess when ericryan gets schooled and owned on this forum, he’s got no other way to debate than to make up lies and false accusations.

          That’s what the weak debaters do when they just can’t make any rational arguments.

      • @Eric Ryan – From Honolulu Notes: “He’s raised hell in the Republican Party, he’s sued and badgered people he says owe him money, he’s hijacked web sites he’s designed for them…and he ends up, even with his reputation, as chief-of-staff for Tom Berg.

        He made what therapists call a ‘poor choice’.
        No kidding.

        Anyway, that didn’t work out and Berg fired Ryan.”

        Is the Eric Ryan in this blog the inimitable Eric Ryan referenced in the article.

        So, what gives, Eric. Why the attack on Djou? Are you on cladwell’s or PRP’s payroll now?

        • Hey Mitt. What happened to Liz Guthrie, I mean creative721 ?? She disappeared. Gosh, she’s such a ‘mean mango’. She was about to explain how Djou had absolutely nothing to do with founding HART.

          Hmmm, your defense of Djou (sitting next to you) is to attack the messenger with opala from a hate website commissioned by Caldwell-backer Kym Pine? Wow, that’s rich.

          If this is what Chucky Boy thinks is necessary to get elected, it’s makes sense that his HQ is across from OCCC.

          Don’t forget that the blog said I once killed a man and that I also kick puppies.

      • Read all about it, Djou defenders: http://conta.cc/2bqkPjc

        You should be embarrassed that you don’t know that Djou is the architect and founder of HART.

        What kind of Republican decides to create a new government bureaucracy and give it a blank check??

        Djou created HART. Accept it. The facts are indisputable. Djou gave HART a blank check. Djou is more to blame than most.

        • What is a republican anymore other than a democrat with an R? There was a time when Djou was an honorable guy There comes a point when you keep running for another office just because thats what you do, you lose touch and your principles.
          Djou these days is the same as Caldwell, as the same as Mufi, as the same as Honabusa. They all just want the power to tell us how to live our lives.
          When you get down to it the majority never wanted the rail to begin with. We serve them.

        • Who was the leader of the opposition to rail while on the council? Djou. Who’s predictions during that time came true? Djou’s. Once voted a go by us, who tried his best to formulate a plan for an agency with appropriate governmental oversight. Djou. Who has allowed it to become the fiasco it has? Not Djou. End of story. My vote is for Djou.

        • @hawaiikone It’s a free country. Vote for whomever you like. Don’t pretend that HART was necessary. The City’s Dept. of Transportation Services was already performing the construction in-house — with oversight from the Mayor and the City Council) in its “Transit Division”. Well, Djuo got rid of that oversight, created a needless and expensive new bureaucracy (like liberals enjoy doing), giving HART a blank check, and now look at where we are today. Nobody to blame except some faceless and weak HART board, faceless bureaucrats, and we have no recourse. Djou put HART and RAIL into the City Charter where we are stuck with 34-miles of rail, unable to amend the plan. Go Djou!!

        • But he’s not honorable. He’s telling people that he can build rail to Ala Moana Center and UH Manoa for FREE even though the project is out of money at Middle Street. Charles Djou is a FRAUD.

        • @Eric Ryan: If anyone here is a fraud, it’s you by claiming that the creation of the HART board was single handedly done so by Charles Djou, but that is impossible to do in a democracy. Also, if you think he’s such a fraud, why didn’t you run for the office? Maybe it’s because you had zero chance of winning perhaps and for whatever reason, you seem to be jealous of Djou. LOL!

        • Boy you really have a Hard On for Mr Djou !
          My Family and I will be voting for him. Mr Djou just wants to spend our money carefully no like now !

        • @gsc – you are pretty gullible. All a politician has to do is tell you what you want to hear and you will vote for him. “I will spend your money carefully” – BOTH Caldwell and Djou say this nonsense. Get to know the HART law that Djou wrote – the mayor and city council are powerless. Do some reading rather than unfounded wishful thinking.

        • Eric you are clearly wrong about Djou single handedly creating HART and hiring Grabby. But to keep arguing the point is just dishonest.

          Did you get hired to replace wiliki and the forum liar?

        • @Keolu – Who said that Djou single handedly creating HART? He is clearly the architect and founder of HART. He clearly should have had nothing to do with this disaster. But he was at the center of things. Obama gets credit for a group effort to pass Obamacare. Djou deserves the same credit for HART.

        • You posting it on the forum 7 times is unnecessary.

          Even if he helped to create HART, a council member cannot do it without a majority of the council and the mayor signing off. So you posts are dishonest.

        • @Keolu Wow, I had no idea until you told me that it’s dishonest to tell the truth. Obama gets the credit for the team effort which led to Obamacare. But you would deny credit to Charles Djou for his role in founding HART. That’s not very pono of you. Your ancestors will not appreciate your calling people liars or selling Djou short.

        • Eric, your link doesn’t work.

          And to call Djou the “founder” of HART is dishonest. I call it like I see it.

        • EricRyan, this post you made is also dishonest and an outright lie.

          “”He’s telling people that he can build rail to Ala Moana Center and UH Manoa for FREE even though the project is out of money at Middle Street.””

      • Read all about it, Djou defenders: http://conta.cc/2bqkPjc

        You should be embarrassed that you don’t know that Djou is the architect and founder of HART.

        What kind of Republican decides to create a new government bureaucracy and give it a blank check??

        Djou created HART. Accept it. The facts are indisputable. Djou gave HART a blank check. Djou is more to blame than most.

        • @Eric Ryan: He didn’t create the bill himself. He collaborated with Ikaika Anderson and Todd Apo. Then it was unanimously approved by the ENTIRE City Council and signed by Mayor.

        • @Eric Ryan: Well you seem to be implying that you are gonna vote for Caldwell by trashing Djou, so who’s following the crowd now? LOL!!!

        • creative721 Now you’re talking nonsense. Crybabies say things like “So you’re going to vote for Caldwell then?” or “So, you’re going to vote for Hillary then?” Rubbish. I’m going to vote knowing the truth about both candidates and knowing it doesn’t make a difference except to the partisans wearing “Caldwell” or “Djou” t-shirts. Electing either one will NOT change the City Charter. And what you wrote is not very LOL. It seems pretty forced.

        • Is this cladwell the naked emperor’s alter ego — Eric Ryan? Or is it a nom de plume for a cladwell hanger-on — e.g., Donna c. or cladwell’s bong-loving daughter, or better yet, the new incarnation of John White and PRP who are trying to look benevolent this election?

        • @mitt_grund How did you figure out who I really am? The Djou social media crisis response team is sooooooooooo smart. Leave my daughter alone. That was my bong.

        • @Eric Ryan: Again avoiding the question and now you’re calling me names? LOL! That’s really mature of you Eric Ryan. My guess is you’re just a Caldwell supporter that for whatever reason doesn’t want to admit it even though it seems like you hate Djou way too much for a normal person. Did he steal your ex-girlfriend or have you been hanging out with Angela Kaaihue too much? LOL!!!

        • Liz Guthrie, I mean creative721, you are such a ‘mean mango’. Yes, everyone should vote for Djou because he will tell us what we want to hear before the election and then watch helplessly while Democrats anally rape us after the election. LOL LOL winky face

      • (The website mentioned above appears questionable at the very least. Among other things, it’s hosted by “Constant Contact” an email marketing firm which is itself questionable. Strangely, in the “html” line just above the “header” material of the page source, it references the Facebook page of a physician from the East Coast. Can’t figure that one out. Anyway, I wouldn’t personally put a lot of confidence in this material and I’m not even a fan of Mr. Djou)

        [BTW: Mr. Grabauskas has a great idea! I’ll be glad to go away also for $300K.]

        • No, what frightens me is that someone would post many links to this questionable email marketing site. Are you malicious or just ill?

        • @Cellodad – Oh, I get it. You can’t attack the message or the facts, so you attack the messenger and the medium. Pretty sad. Djou’s supporters are a pathetic lot.

        • Djou’ supporters are long and strong. Charles spoke and Grabby is gone. Great start for our future Mayor.

        • @sarge22 – if you believe that “Charles spoke” nonsense, I’ve got a bridge to sell you. In a desperate gambit for publicity for his plummeting campaign (remember when Djou was 9 points ahead, now he’s 2 points behind), Djou scheduled his press conference one day before a LONG scheduled HART board meeting at which everyone in town knew would either result in Grabauskas’ firing or resignation. Thank goodness there are suckers born every minute who believe “Charles spoke and Grabby is gone”. Yes, unicorns and rainbows should be Djou’s logo.

        • “Charles spoke and Grabby is gone” The campaign is just getting started and Djou did great in the primary considering he was running against PRP and most of the unions. ‘Make Honolulu Great Again”

        • It’s still early. Only a few unions are supporting Djou. If PRP stays out and you believe John White then Djou’s chances are really good.

      • Djou, wants save us money by stopping Rail at Middle Street. We end up with a half functional rail metro system. That is like throwing all the money, planning, design and construction, Federal, State, and City, down the drain. That is not fiscal responsibility. That is lunacy.

    • Read all about it, Djou defenders: http://conta.cc/2bqkPjc

      You should be embarrassed that you don’t know that Djou is the architect and founder of HART.

      What kind of Republican decides to create a new government bureaucracy and give it a blank check??

      Djou created HART. Accept it. The facts are indisputable. Djou gave HART a blank check. Djou is more to blame than most.

      • Wow so by helping to draft this legislation its all his fault ? Wow you sound like a Dem. Amazing since this city and state are run by 99% Dems. Wake up buddy and get back to work for uncle kirky boiy

        • What a bizarre comment! You don’t think that Djou’s creation of a huge, expensive new bureaucracy makes him seem like a Democrat. But anyone who points out that Djou created a huge, expensive new bureaucracy is a Democrat working for Caldwell. Tell me, did Djou have a gun pointed at him while he wrote, introduced, promoted, and voted to create HART? Or is he the spineless closet Democrat we all know him to be? You have some really bizarre opinions.

        • @Eric Ryan: Yah, so after reading this document, it looks like Djou introduced the bill with Todd Apo and Ikaika Anderson and the entire City Council approved of its creation and the Mayor at the time signed it. So if it takes all of these moving parts to get a bill enacted into law, how did Djou do this by himself again? You’re at best distorting the truth if not outright lying. LOL!

        • He did it all by himself? I think you’re trying to give him even more credit than Obama gets for Obamacare. Djou’s HART is based on Djou’s legislation which any REAL Republican would have nothing to do with. Are you really proud that Djou helped to create HART? Are you proud that he helped to give a blank check to a huge new bureaucracy which operates with no accountability? Don’t diminish Djou’s credit for being the architect and founder of HART. Others may have written the final bill that led to Obamacare, but Djou deserves to be known for HART.

        • @Eric Ryan: Learn to read. I didn’t say Djou did it all by himself. YOU said by saying it’s Djou’s Legislation when it should be Djou, Anderson, and Apo’s legislation. Also, the ENTIRE City Council approved the bill, not Djou by himself. Also, the Mayor at the time Mufi signed it. It’s everyone’s fault. Not just Djou. LOL!

        • @creative721, WOW, you must be very proud of Djou for going along with the crowd. What a LEADER!! Djou must really be putting the pressure on you to counter me. Is he threatening to take back your Djou t-shirt? So if a Republican voted for Obamacare, that’s okay because Democrats did too? You gotta be kidding!!! Djou was pushing to create HART from 2008 until approved by voters in 2010 and enacted in 2011. He deserves the credit that you are denying him. Djou should be proud of writing and introducing and voting for HART. We have Charles to thank for Dan Grabauskas and $11 Billion.

        • @Eric Ryan: So again, I will ask you. Are you saying that we should all vote for Caldwell? If that’s the case, wouldn’t I still be following a crowd? LOL! You’re statements don’t make any sense. Have you been hanging out with Angela Kaaihue or something? LOL!

        • @creative721 Actually, I get my information from Djou’s own website which says he wants to build rail to UH Manoa and to Waikiki. I suppose if I had my brain removed and I followed you down to Djou headquarters, then YES I would be following the crowd. LOL LOL winky-face

        • Shua ting, Publicbraddah. You so smaht, eh you. Using one kine sue do nimm instead of saying you iz Charles Kong Djou, founder and architect of HART.

      • Read all about it, Djou defenders: http://conta.cc/2bqkPjc

        You should be embarrassed that you don’t know that Djou is the architect and founder of HART.

        What kind of Republican decides to create a new government bureaucracy and give it a blank check??

        Djou created HART. Accept it. The facts are indisputable. Djou gave HART a blank check. Djou is more to blame than most.

        • @aomohoa – “ignorant”?? Ha! Unlike you, I actually understand the issue. You live in a land of unicorns, rainbows and puppies. Djou created this disaster by founding HART and giving it a blank check and zero accountability. Of course the pricetag tripled from $3.9 billion to $11 billion. Djou provided ZERO restrictions to limit HART’s spending. That was the intent all along by “the people involved with this disaster.” Ignorant. yes, you really are.

    • Eh, jackass, Djou was a sitting member of the City Council who created HART. HART would’ve been created no matter who was in the City Council at the time. HART was a necessary entity because Mufi and the construction PACs wanted rail built. Mufi thought he could use his choo choo train and the construction vote to get him elected to Governor.

      • Actually, jackass, Djou wrote the bill, pushed for the bill, and got the council to pass the bill. HART wasn’t ‘necessary’ as the original plan had the “transit division” of the City’s department of transportation services building and maintaining the rail project. HART was an afterthought. Djou is the founder and architect of HART. Nobody else, uh, jackass.

        • You’re the jack a-s-s. Stop the name calling The concrete guideways have already been laid. It s going to stay as a rail system It wasn’t designed as bus rapid transit guideway as many of us preferred. Blame Mufi and the council at that time for ramming this system that’s a blight to our island.

        • @hon2255 – You’re the c*cks**cker. So stop the name calling. Your friend Djou enshrined rail in the City Charter rendering it unchangeable. He is the architect and founder of HART. Your sad attempt to deflect blame from Djou has failed, c*cks**cker. Stop the namecalling.

        • No jackass. HART was not an after-thought. It was determined that it should have its own agency because of the uniqueness of the project and none of the other current city agencies had the scope and responsibilities to cover it because of the mix of city and federal funding and all the oversight that goes with that.

        • @plaba Nice try. Are you trying out the lame responses that Djou will use between now and Election Day to defend the indefensible. HART wasn’t needed for federal money. And the City’s DTS was perfectly capable of building rail. You are just making stuff up. The City (not HART) is the actual agent with whom the FTA signs agreements. Hanabusa says this at practically every HART meeting. Read the law creating HART that Djou wrote, introduced, promoted, and voted for. It’s pretty clear that Djou wanted to protect politicians by making a huge new bureaucracy with no accountability and a blank check. Just like any phony Republican would do.

        • Just settle down and listen carefully what Charles has to say. You may actually learn something instead of just making a lot of noise. Are you related to Tom Berg?

    • This issue isn’t “who created it”, it’s who appointed the members, and who was supposed to be watching over them. Actually, the bigger point is how we ever got to the point that we are building the clickety clackety screeching choo choo to no where?

    • @EricRyan: Wow, so Charles Djou is the only one to blame for this even though it takes at least 4 other city council members and the standing mayor at that time to approve of HART’s creation? Give me a break Eric Ryan! So when did democracy die and make Djou the sole ruler of Hawaii with the power to single handedly create the HART board because that’s what you’re insinuating. I don’t really care for Djou either, but the constitution prevents the unilateral creation of such an organization without others to provide the supporting votes. They are just as guilty in all of this along with Mufi who was the Mayor and Caldwell who was Managing Director of the city during that time.

      • Has anybody told you that you’re anal retentive?

        What kind of Republican wants to needlessly create a brand new, expensive bureaucracy? One with no accountability? One with a blank check and no restriction on total pricetag?

        Djou shows his true colors by changing the City Charter so that 34-miles heavy rail is the permanent, unchangeable plan for Honolulu and its overtaxed residents.

        Sorry, anonymous person. Djou is the architect and founder of HART. He is a horrible public official.

      • Actually, that would be Rail’s biggest supporter, Kym Pine-Ryglowski. She’s endorsed Kirk Caldwell. Interesting source for a ‘discreditation’ take down.

      • Actually, that would be Rail’s biggest supporter, Kym Pine-Ryglowski. She’s endorsed Kirk Caldwell. Interesting source for a ‘discreditation’ take down.

    • “His contract includes a severance payment equal to his base salary of $257,250.

      Hanabusa said Grabauskas will get the severance and that the board has executed a “separation agreement.””

  • This is sad, but he will laugh all the way to the bank.

    Will he go back to Boston with his head held high…….no way.

    Maybe he can land a job building the high speed rail between Northern and Southern California, that State is run by Democrats too.

    He can always go to Salt Lake City Utah, …their light rail, street level, TRACKS System is expanding. (Google them). Housing and cost of living is alot cheaper. Education at the Utah public schools for his kids is OK too. (Skiing is excellent in the Winter time).

    Maybe he’ll be bold and move to China and help them with their rail system??

    Good luck, just fade away and turn off the lights as you leave the office for the final time soon.

  • Grabauskas messed up. He should have waited for the UH Manoa Chancellor position to open up. Then he could’ve taken a paid sabbatical and gotten a professorship.

  • Ha Ha, severance pay if let go “without cause” . I think I just found the just cause…..” It now faces a renewed deficit of at least $8.3 billion, according to the latest official estimates.” I wonder how being in charge of squandering billions of dollars looks on a resume?

  • This guy is the current scapegoat of an ill-fated project that will never meet expectations. Virtually all government projects are similarly doomed. The only difference is the size and scope. Why? Because no one running these projects really cares about cost, as it’s not their money. Government is all about spending money, more specifically the directing of money spent to political insiders. How do you think people like our own Uncle Dan became so powerful. Eventually the money will run out leaving this country, this state and this city in an extremely difficult situation.

      • I would never defend this guy but be aware that people in these positions are often puppets/figureheads, told to say what their superior tells them to. He/they get a nice check in return for taking the flack. Openness and honesty was never a consideration. This project started a long time before this man came into the picture, per this article, about 4.5 years. All of the phony cost estimates were already made by then.

        • This project is the most transparent of all projects. As proof, we are not arguing about our costs but about current cost PROJECTIONS.

          Future possible costs. HART’s projection is within budget. Feds disagree.

  • Now i guess you Oahu voters will be going after Caldwell. Good luck.
    Got to tell my friends in Boston that Dan’s out, they will probably get a big laugh out of it.

  • The handwriting of incompetency was on the wall a long time ago…it just took too long to do what’s right. This what happens when you get wrapped up in a political vacuum…”Captain Obvious” 🙂

    • Swiped a page from Gib Arnold. Memo to self: If I ever get offered a govt. contract, sign it right away. No need read the fine print. No matter what, I’ll come out buku $$ ahead.

  • This is all politics DG falls on the sword . Now what do we have to show for this? Horner brought him in and tossed out the one person who had it on track, remember Toru Hamayasu? He was paid Half as much as DG. Toru had worked on the project for 20 years. But wouldnt play Horners brand of politics. Maybe the board should visit with Mr. Hamyasu.
    Back To DG… The meaning of aloha 257,000 to get a sun tan!

  • UkuBS, Weewili, Nanacoolieboss, Vectum: What happened to YOUR BOY?????

    I think I just read something THIS MORNING from ukuBS singing his praises on how he’s doing such a GREAT job!!!!!

  • agree that grabauska was not forthright with the board and others. believe that he an horner were friends and kept things to themselves. this was hid downfall, he was not transparent and truthful. hope his replacement will be much better.

    • Horner’s job was done when bankrupt/corrupt former Italian company Ansaldo got the multi-BILLION dollar contract to supply the train for the Oahu train to nowhere project. Once Mufi lost the election to Aber, Bombardier was completely shut out of the bidding process even though Ansaldo had a comparable violation of bidder rules and regs that should have disqualified Ansaldo from bidding as well. That would have only left Mitsubishi to bid on the rail project. BNP Paribas rewarded FHB and subsequently Horno by backing the public offering of FHB..

  • It was either resign or be fired. Given that choice Grabauskas of course choose to resign. Sounds better on your resume. But given all the money he made and his severance pay yet to come
    he may not need to work anymore but who knows. A lot of there rail projects in the works on the mainland although they would be crazy to hire Grabauskas.
    By the way, putting Mike Formby in as acting is a serious mistake as he is nothing but a political hack and attorney who is not even qualified to be the head of the City Dept of Transportation.
    The rail project is still heading for the iceberg full speed ahead and the band keeps playing.

  • “Michael Formby, the director of the city’s Department of Transportation Services and a board member, as acting rail director while the board seeks a permanent replacement. Formby would step down from the HART board to take the interim appointment.” Couldn’t they have picked someone with less political ties? And until they find a permanent replacement which may take some time, there will be one less member on the HART board (no problem?), and someone to be acting city DOT director which means everyone in the city’s DOT will have to move up in an acting position (or acting city DOT director not needed?, and will Formby be acting director without any additional compensation as the rail director makes more than what Formby makes as the city’s DOT director.

  • Someone needs to make some head plaques of Kirk, Mufi and Dan G. and put them on a Wall of Shame at the first operating train station…..it will be money well spend, and always be a reminder of what we swallowed……..(rub their bronze noses for good luck as you walk by?).

    there must be a local artist to do this, not some carpetbagger from the Mainland.

  • This is why voter turn out is so low. High percentage of those at the top of the food chain are too greedy. They only care about their personal portfolios. The state of Hawaii, and particularly the island of Oahu, are meaningless to these people. Sold out to the almighty dollar. Well, you can’t take it to the grave. Meanwhile, you’ve left behind a big mess. What a legacy.

    • Such a true comment.

      Even the minted “locals”…those that play the sad violin about “spirit of aloha” and “local values” have sold out for the portfolio. Look at that Constance Lau and what she would have stood to gain if HECO sold to NextEra. Look at Krook’s $200k “job” working a few hours a year. Colbert Matsumoto and all his properties along the PLANNED rail route.

      The list goes on…

  • The real problem is with Caldwell and his promise to build rail right on time and on budget. As useless as GrabAss was he is just a scapegoat. Caldwell and his incompetent administration are trying to turn the attention away from them during this election. It is easy to solve the problem vote them all out of office.

  • The new chief executive will have to deal with heco on the substations to power the rail and rail stations. In an article from Gina Mangieri, “PUC review could delay key rail power source”, she wrote, “In a recent letter to rail authority staff, HECO says the substation will be “generally” the utility’s cost. While a price tag isn’t cited, in the past it has been estimated in the multimillions.

    Oahu taxpayers who are funding most of rail are also HECO ratepayers.
    “Whether it be the taxpayer from the G.E. tax standpoint or whether it’ll be Hawaiian Electric with maybe a rate increase…”

    Either way, taxpayers pay. These costs are over and above the costs to relocate the high voltage lines and other utilities on Dillingham which haven’t been revealed to date.

  • Sorry…couldn’t resist…

    “There are very few in the transit industry that have the extensive expertise and experience that Dan has and it would be extremely difficult to find someone better. Dan should be allowed to stay on to see our exciting rail project to completion. We all need to stay positive and just imagine the beautiful sleek trains that will whisk riders overhead past all the traffic congestion.”

    ~ukuleleblue 06:53 Aug 18, 2016

  • Timing delayed until after the election to give cover for Kirki. Some other bad news must be imminent, such as no agreement with Hawaiian Electric re the power lines and the flaw in signing the new construction contract when route changes may be needed. Cost just jumped $2 billion more.

  • This guy lasted longer than I thought he would; longer than most of the experts who have a good record on the mainland, but when they come here and have to deal with our corrupt political system, we chew them up and spit them out.

  • In nutshell, the whole rail fiasco is just another and much larger version of the typical Hawaii state or local public works model. It goes like this:

    The project is announced and approved with much hooplah/backslapping and a price that seems reasonable by local standards. Then as things unfold, the politicians, contractors, and unions conspire to gloss over change orders, cost overruns, hidden expenses, delays, and outright thievery. It ends up getting built at close to twice the projected cost over a much longer time frame than promised. Over 170 people write outraged comments in the city newspaper, the politicians moan a little and then shrug, and the contractors and overpaid union workers get rich. This happens over and over, and rail is no different. What did you people expect?

  • Sure, he was the top man. However, a lot of blame for the rail dilemma should be levelled at all of his “assistants”, “managers”, “senior level engineers”, and most of his staff. They should be firing a lot of these people.

    And, why let Formby be the acting Director? Formby was part of the “gang” that let Rail become the mess that it is.

  • ANNUAL COMPENSATION:

    A. BASE SALARY: ($21,437.50) per month ($257,250.00) per year).

    B HOUSING ALLOWANCE:

    ($3,000.00) per month ($36,000.00/year).

    C. TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCE:

    ($500.00) per month ($6,000.00/year).

    4 ANNUAL BONUS AND ADJUSTMENT: (15%)

    What a sweet contract for someone who failed to deliver to the people of Honolulu.

    What the lawyers need to include in future contracts is the forfeit of monies in the case of non-performance. There is no prose to make these people accountable for their failures.

    They basically take the Honolulu tax-payer money with no accountability for their actions. (inaction)

  • Looks like Eric Ryan has been banned. Doing some public record searches does turn up multiple TRO requests from Pine and Berg. Anger management courses obviously not a mandatory thing. Seems he doesn’t like to drive the speed limit or register and safety check his vehicle as well. A real stand up citizen. Must be on the Cladwell payroll. I miss him, he was feisty.

  • Regarding: “Hanabusa, a Democrat, is running to replace the late U.S. Rep. K. Mark Takai in Congress.”

    Hanabusa should resign from the HART board and devote her efforts to getting elected. She’s holding on with a death-grip in case she loses and still lands on her feet.

  • Why is Grabauskas getting severance pay when his contract says severance pay is made only if he is terminated without cause? He resigned, and he was not terminated. Is this a new agreement made with the HART Board to pay him for resigning?

    People may have political reasons to ask Grabuaskas to resign. Yet, per Grabauskas, increase in rail costs are due to the construction supply and demand. I’d like to see the 16 hours of HART deliberation which indicates if HART board agrees or have alternate explanations and methods to reduce the costs. Added to those costs now is Grabuaskas’s severance pay.

  • I researched his education, training and experience. He has absolutely no engineering, architecture and construction credentials. Who in their right mind would put him in charge of a multi-billion dollar construction project? Oh, that’s right. This is the people’s republic of Hawaii. We do things differently to suit our one political party agenda.

  • I thought you get a severance package if you’re fired, not if you quit. Unless this is a golden parachute in his contract. What a deal! Who crafts these contracts anyway? It’s a win-win situation for Grabauskas.

  • If you all are looking for a fall guy, look in the mirror. Oahu voters are the real culprits. We’re either too gullible and fall for the sales pitch without demanding answers to the tough questions. Or, we work for the unions (White/PRP)and will do anything as long as it gets us jobs. Or probably the best answer is ainokea so I won’t vote. Don’t blame the politicians or developers. Man up and blame yourself. This is what makes Hawaii such an easy target for developers. Look at our medium home price. Who can afford $700K plus? The locals are becoming homeless because of outside investments by rich people. We need to force developers to make affordable ($300K – $500K) housing on 85% of their projects.

  • Grabby’s plea to keep his job:

    ukuleleblue says:
    August 18, 2016 at 6:53 am

    Dan Grabauskas should not be to blame for the rail cost overruns. The main culprit were the delays all along the way which kept pushing up the construction timetable. No one could have foreseen our booming construction economy that was fueled by the high demand for luxury condominium towers in Kakaako which created high construction cost and land inflation. Contractors have since been in the driver’s seat in commanding high bid costs in construction jobs where the rail project has had to compete with the more lucrative condominium work. Land costs needed for the rail alignment have also increased due to skyrocketing real estate prices in the booming Honolulu market caused by high demand and low supply and also low interest rates. As far as rail costs exceeding budget, Dan has been doing his best and no one else could have done better under the circumstances. The costs are what they are and we need just find the funding to complete the rail project as planned for our long term future to meet our transportation needs. Although we should “think outside the box” for other ways to raise funding for the cost increases, we already have an easy solution which is the continuation of the small half percent general excise tax surcharge for rail as needed. The GE tax is the most fair across the board and is barely felt as taxpayers only pay tax according to their financial ability to spend. We have made great progress thus far with the amazing rail construction and need to stay the course and not change the leadership indiscriminately midstream. There are very few in the transit industry that have the extensive expertise and experience that Dan has and it would be extremely difficult to find someone better. Dan should be allowed to stay on to see our exciting rail project to completion. We all need to stay positive and just imagine the beautiful sleek trains that will whisk riders overhead past all the traffic congestion. We have a great future with rail for our children and grandchildren.

  • Should have been fired a long time ago, he pocketed a million dollars and left us with a never to be completed project from nowhere to nowhere near UH and billions over budget. Formby has been a HART board member for awhile, what is he going to do different? Between Formby-the Lawyer “wanna be transportation expert” and the PRP-purchased Mayors (Caldwell, Carlisle, HANNEMANN) and current and previous council members, we have a mess with no answers on how it is going to be completed and no idea where the power will come from and what the operation and maintenance cost will be. There needs to be a FEDERAL investigation, our current State AG has dirty hands too as Carlisle’s Managing Director, and people need to go to JAIL!

      • Convenient scapegoat because he is SO UTTERLY INCOMPETENT.

        The fact he lasted so long is a testament of how local government was passing the buck around, were totally clueless and didn’t even realize they were on an expensive sinking ship!!

  • SIMPSONS monorail episode.

    And now the huckster leaves with his packed bag, laughing all the way at the rubes back in HNL.

    Unfortunately we’re still left with Mayor Quimby…

  • Hawaii local union rank and file need to wake up. Kirk is the problem as he and Mufi started this rail project knowing dang well this was all about making $$$$$$ for connected special interest at the expense of Hawaii taxpayer and those hard hardest are middle class union workers. Grabby is only a bit player in this whole charade and just a extremely well paid and compensated fall guy. I don’t like calling anyone stoopid but a stoopid person is NOT someone who makes a mistake, a stoopid person is someone who makes the SAME mistake over and over and over again.