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UH slashes its funding request for Daniel K. Inouye library

By Nanea Kalani

LAST UPDATED: 08:22 p.m. HST, Oct 17, 2013

Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) in his office in the Hart Senate Building in Washington in 2009. Memorials are in the works for Inouye and the late U.S. Rep. Patsy Mink.

The University of Hawaii has drastically cut its funding request for the planned Daniel K. Inouye library, including slashing a request for state bond financing by two thirds, to $5 million.

Interim UH President David Lassner proposed the funding change at today's Board of Regents meeting after hearing public testimony from Inouye's former chief of staff, Jennifer Sabas, who spoke on behalf of the late U.S. senator's family and cited concerns about how quickly UH was moving on the proposed $27.5 million project.

Sabas noted community concerns about the university's efforts to get the project built as soon as possible, adding that Inouye would be saddened by the criticisms over transparency. Inouye's widow, Irene, and his son, Ken, also attended the meeting.

Lassner said he proposed the change in respect of the family's remarks. He said the reduction would allow for fundraising at the federal and local levels. Construction will not begin in July as planned, he said.

He added that the $5 million legislative request would allow the state to demonstrate its commitment to the project.

The university's budget initially had included a request for $15 million in state general obligation bond financing and $10 million in federal funds. Those have been reduced to the single $5 million request. Another $2.5 million would still come from UH revolving funds and private donations.

The regents approved the change in unanimously voting in favor of the university's overall budget proposal for next year.

The planned project generated criticism not only for the speed in which UH was pursuing it but the hefty price tag. At $27 million, it would have been the priciest new building on a per-square-foot basis that UH has pursued in years.


Star-Advertiser reporter Rob Perez contributed to this report.

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localguy wrote:
Nice try clueless UH bureaucrats but twice nothing is still nothing. What part of "There is no more money" do you continually fail to understand. As I've said before, ask for donations. If people think that highly of Dan, money will flow in. If not, so be it. No need to waste millions on monuments to the dead. Spend it on the living. Scan all his papers, photograph all his items, put them all on a world class website totally paid for by donations, assembled by volunteers. Not one cent of tax payer money to cover this. Past experience has shown UH bureaucrats cannot be trusted with money, they waste it on dysfunctional presidents, Wonder Blunders, everything. Nothing goes to reduce the cost of tuition or increase the education experience. No wonder UH ranks among the lowest when compared to mainland institutions.
on October 17,2013 | 02:11PM
allie wrote:
totally agree. Dan is gone guys. get off your knees and cut the shibai. Dan did a lot with public tax dollars but he was no saint. There was a dark side to his record out here as well as a light side. Stop wasting money. All of his papers will be at the National Archives anyway.
on October 17,2013 | 02:36PM
ShibaiDakine wrote:
More Post Inouye Stress Syndrome. I wonder if the treatment is going to be covered under Obamacare?
on October 18,2013 | 12:32AM
nalogirl wrote:
So if it wasn't for Inouye's former chief of staff, his wife and son, the regents would have authorized the money? It just goes to show that UH and the BOR are not listening to the people.
on October 17,2013 | 02:37PM
false wrote:
Have they ever? They are a bunch of political lackeys that make Quasimodo look like the head of a Mensa group.
on October 17,2013 | 03:08PM
allie wrote:
on October 17,2013 | 04:05PM
Anonymous wrote:
There is no need for a library building. If people want to read his papers, the library can scan everything one-time and put the papers online. Done. I used to work for a Congressman. They generate very little paperwork that is worth millions of dollars for a building! No taxpayer dollars for this project, please.
on October 17,2013 | 02:37PM
allie wrote:
on October 17,2013 | 04:05PM
false wrote:
Sabas, Sabas,Sebas, we should be paying for this in the first place.
on October 17,2013 | 03:02PM
Margaret8 wrote:
These guys are totally out of touch! Totally out of touch. Fix what's broken. Repair deferred maintenance items. no more wasted tax payer money!! West Oahu campus is a joke too...pay attention to students' issues, stop focusing so much on sports
on October 17,2013 | 03:11PM
allie wrote:
let the lackeys give money and raise it. Stop bilking the tax payer
on October 17,2013 | 04:06PM
false wrote:
Gee, what happen to his campaign war chest?
on October 17,2013 | 03:15PM
false wrote:
What happen to his campaign fund left over?
on October 17,2013 | 03:15PM
Ken_Conklin wrote:
There's a huge institution in Washington called the "Library of Congress." Turn over Inouye's papers to them. Is anybody really interested in researching Inouye's papers? Has anybody been trying to do it during the 10 months since he died? Put the papers in a big warehouse somewhere, pay Sabas her former salary for a year to go through them and create a catalog, then shut the door and turn out the lights.
on October 17,2013 | 04:19PM
MakaniKai wrote:
1.2 million Was raised by the Friends of Washington Place to fund the construction of the Governor’s Mansion in addition to $200,000 appropriated by the Ledge. Therefore Mrs. Hirano- Inouye as former President and founding Chief Executive Officer of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles and current Chair of the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees should put her fund raising non-profit building skills and networking to use and create a non-profit in the late Senator’s name to raise the funds. The taxpayer should not be contributing a penny! But in the story photo she looks more than happy to have the people of Hawaii foot the bill. Auē hoʻi au! Woe is me!
on October 17,2013 | 04:39PM
Papio001 wrote:
If the senators first wife Maggie was still alive she would not be pressing for the project. This seems more like the Hirano/Sabas library...
on October 17,2013 | 05:54PM
Dawg wrote:
Time to move on. Inouye's legacy is over. STOP MILKiNG THE DEAD! I personally have had enough of this SABAS, SABAS, SABAS and her public mourning. No more milage to work. We have al moved on from the past.
on October 17,2013 | 06:12PM
rayhawaii wrote:
Move the project to the West Hawaii campus for 1/2 the cost.
on October 17,2013 | 07:26PM
mikethenovice wrote:
Slashing? Going in the right direction. Keep going down.
on October 17,2013 | 09:22PM
HealthyandHappy wrote:
Inouyes deserves a 400 Billion edifice.
on October 17,2013 | 09:36PM
Grimbold wrote:
The whole darn library is unneeded and a waste of money. Us the money for repairing negblected Buildings.
on October 17,2013 | 10:49PM
BrianW wrote:
$5 million for Dan K Inouye Liabrry. Maybe, $10 million for Barrack M Obama Liabrary?
on October 17,2013 | 11:37PM
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