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Governor and HI-EMA brief state lawmakers

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    Rep. Kaniela Ing, right, sat next to Rep. Beth Fukumoto at a briefing today for state lawmakers on Saturday’s ballistic missile false alarm.


    Gov. David Ige will be briefing lawmakers at today’s hearing.

Gov. David Ige and Hawaii Emergency Management Agency Administrator Vern Miyagi briefed state lawmakers today on the ballistic missile attack false alarm that frightened residents and tourists across Hawaii on Saturday.

A Hawaii Emergency Management Agency employee mistakenly broadcast a ballistic missile threat alert that was sent to cellphones across the state at 8:07 a.m. Saturday.

The state adjutant general determined the alert was false three minutes later, but the agency took until 8:45 a.m. to issue official notification that the threat was false, in part because state officials mistakenly believed they had to consult with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to issue a retraction.

It took Hawaii emergency management 23 minutes to connect with FEMA, contributing to what Hawaii lawmakers have called an unacceptable delay.

The House Public Safety Committee; House Veterans, Military and International Affairs and Culture and the Arts Committee; and the Senate Government Operations and Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs committees have scheduled a hearing at the state Capitol auditorium for 10 a.m. today to review the circumstances surrounding the incident and the delay in canceling the false alarm.

No public testimony will be accepted during today’s hearing, but some Central Oahu lawmakers have scheduled a town hall meeting tonight at Pearl City Highlands Elementary School cafeteria at 1419 Waimano Home Road to discuss issues surrounding the missile threat and the false alarm.

The town hall meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m., and officials from Hawaii Emergency Management Agency will discuss what the agency is doing to prepare the state for the nuclear threat, and steps being taken to educate the public.

State Sens. Clarence Nishihara (D, Waipahu-Pearl City) and Breene Harimoto (D, Pearl Harbor-Pearl City-Aiea) and state Reps. Roy Takumi (D, Pearl City-Waipio-Pearl Harbor) and Gregg Takayama (D, Pearl City-Waimalu- Pacific Palisades) are hosting the event.

>> For the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s full coverage of Hawaii’s missile alert scare, go to

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