The House has began reviewing former state Rep. Ty J.K. Cullen’s voting record — along with the bills he introduced this session — following his indictment Tuesday on federal corruption charges.
“We’re trying to piece things together,” state House Speaker Scott Saiki told reporters today.
A law passed by the Legislature last year also could mean that Cullen and former state Sen. J. Kalani English could lose their pensions if convicted of a crime.
Saiki called charges against Cullen and English “the most egregious” allegations a member of the Legislature has faced during Saiki’s time at the Capitol.
“This is really bad,” Saiki said. “This is public corruption. … I hope it’s uncommon. I would hope that it’s uncommon.”
The U.S. Department of Justice accused English — the former Senate majority leader — and Cullen — the vice chairman of the House Committee on Finance — of taking thousands of dollars in bribes to promote and kill legislation related to cesspool and wastewater policy to benefit a Hawaii industrial services company and its affiliated businesses.
English’s attorney said he will plead guilty. Cullen resigned Tuesday.
But Kouchi said in a statement today that the accusations against English “were surprising and unfortunate and casts a pall over the Legislature and the work that we are trying to accomplish for the people of Hawaii. We must rededicate ourselves and work to rebuild the public’s trust in government.”