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Restored Republic via a GCR as of July 21, 2018

Restored Republic via a GCR: Update as of July 21, 2018 Compiled 21 July 12:01 am EST by Judy Byington, MSW, LCSW, ret. CEO, Child Abuse R...

Monday, January 23, 2017

Trump, Please Clean up the Corruption in Hawaii

TRUMP: Please Clean up Hawaii's corrupt politicians


OHA’s Hidden LLCs: Why Plead Guilty to Stealing $14M?
By Andrew Walden @ 5:10 PM
by Andrew Walden

Why would a lawyer plead her client guilty of stealing over $14M worth of State-owned land and other assets?

If the lawyer is working for the LLCs owned by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the answer might be “to avoid an open records request.”

Honolulu attorney Kimberly Greeley, “represent(ing) Hi’ilei Aloha, LLC, Ho’okele Pono, LLC, and Hi’ipaka LLC” in a January 9 response to an open records request from Hawai’i Free Press claims:
“Sole title to the land comprising Waimea Valley was transferred to Hi’ipaka LLC (by OHA) in 2007.  The State does not own the valley nor any of Hi’ipaka’s other assets….  Nor is Hi’ipaka operated or managed by the State…. In sum, the State does not control or direct any of the Companies’ activities or business affairs and does not provide any funding for the Companies.  The Companies activities are not a required function of any government agency.  The Companies are not, therefore subject to the provisions of the UIPA.”
Of course all of this is nonsense.  Waimea Valley and all of the LLCs are still 100% owned by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.  The LLCs are State property and therefore completely subject to UIPA.  OHA owns a total of six LLCs and OHA’s ownership is completely documented with the DCCA BREG at the links below:
Falsely pleading her clients guilty to multiple counts of grand theft ‘aina is an act of desperation if their ever was one.  It might also be professional misconduct.  What is Greeley trying to hide?  What might be found if the LLCs are obligated to hand over their compete check registers to Hawai’i Free Press?

Office of Hawaiian Affairs financial statements record $34M in expenses attributed to Hi’ilei Aloha and Hi’ipaka since 2009.  The partial record from IRS form 990s filed by some of the LLCs show extensive money transfers between the LLCs and fat salaries paid out to OHA insiders.

Hiilei Aloha has paid Mona Bernadino, a crony of ousted OHA Trustee Haunani Apoliona, a total of $613,108 in salary and $49,615 in “other compensation” between 2010 and 2014—the only years for which Hiilei Aloha’s 990s are available online.  Projecting back to the foundation of Hiilei Aloha in 2007, Bernadino’s hidden salary may well exceed $1 million –making her one of the most highly compensated employees in OHA history.  Total salaries paid by Hiilei Aloha between 2009-2014 are $6,015,922, according to their 990s.
Fewer 990s are available for Hiipaka LLC but records show that Richard Pezzulo was paid $145,917 in salary and $11,497 in other compensation in 2014.  Pezzulo received $138,000 in salary and $6,625 in other compensation in 2013. In total, Hiipaka LLC paid $7,225,350 in salaries between 2011-2014, according to their 990s.

Pezzulo’s $145,917 would make him the second-highest –paid OHA employee compared to the OHA salaries listed in a 2016 news report.  Bernadino’s $125K per year salary would make her the equal of recently-resigned OHA CFO Hawley Iona.

But salaries may not be the only thing OHA’s LLCs have to hide.  If the LLCs view themselves as completely private entities, not property of the State of Hawaii, then the owners have no prohibition against self-dealing and nepotism.  Who are their contractors?  Which profitable Trustee-connected non-profit and for-profit corporations are receiving fat juicy contracts from the LLCs?  Only the check register can answer these questions.  

The 990s show big spending on “other expenses” by the LLCs:  Hiipaka spent $7,663,603  between 2011-2014, Hiilei Aloha spent $4,804,672 between 2009-2014, and Hookipaipai spent $580,501 between 2011-2014.

Two of OHA’s LLCs became the subject of litigation in 2014.   Ka Piko vs OHA, filed December 31, 2014 in Kauai's 5th Circuit Court, alleged that Mona Bernadino and her sub-cronies looted the Waimea, Kauai Makaweli Poi Mill via Hiilei Aloha LLC and its subsidiary Hiipoi while also using the two corporations as a conduit for transferring OHA assets to their own pockets.  After Apoliona's alleged cronies were allegedly finished, one of OHA CEO Kamanao Crabbe's cronies allegedly took a turn.

Especially noteworthy:  Line 137 of the complaint alleged "Defendant OHA indicated that because Defendant HI’IPOI was an LLC whose sole member was Defendant OHA, HIIPOI was exempt from the Hawaii State Public Agency and Meetings Laws, HRS Chapter 92, and from the Hawaii Uniform Information Practices Act, HRS Chapter 92F."
There have been other complaints as well.  In 2008, the website OHA Lies explained:
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs Chair Haunani Apoliona, Administrator Clyde Namu‘o, Deputy Administrator Mona Bernardino, and Director of Land Management Jonathan Scheuer are programmatically and financially mismanaging Waimea Valley. According to OHA sources, Apoliona led a charge to release $4,567,511 of Trust funds to support Hi‘ilei Aloha LLC, Hi‘ipaka LLC, and Hi‘ipoi LLC in January 2008.
By June 2008, Hi‘ipaka LLC managers who are also state employees Namu‘o and Scheuer with the support of Apoliona and Hi‘ilei Aloha LLC manager and state employee Bernardino forced Hi‘ipaka LLC Executive Director Gary Gill to resign and announced in a June 5, 2008 report that Hi‘ilei Aloha LLC, Hi‘ipaka LLC, and Hi‘ipoi LLC are operating in a deficit. The June 5, 2008 report stated that the deficit was $614,809.70. This is absolutely appalling, because in January 2008 OHA under Apoliona authorized $4,567,511 of Trust funds to support Hi‘ilei Aloha LLC, Hi‘ipaka LLC, and Hi‘ipoi LLC of which $2,276,882 was released. In less than six months, OHA leadership lost $2,891,691.71 in Trust funds. Where did all the Trust funds disappear too?
Waimea Valley employees have publicly shared that the leadership of Apoliona, Namu‘o, Bernardino, and Scheuer has brought chaos and dysfunction to Waimea Valley. Furthermore, these individuals on numerous occasions have lectured employees to stifle the truth from being told. Waimea employees have publicly stated, “Waimea Valley needs to be saved again, only this time OHA’s beneficiaries will need to save the Valley from OHA itself.”
Nine years later, we are still trying to find out where all the money went.

Financial Services: OHA Spire Contract Balloons 760% in Two Years
By Dr Kelii Akina PhD @ 5:35 PM

Trustee Akina Questions OHA Administration’s Fiscal Sustainability Planning
Contractors confirm no implementation plan currently exists

News Release from Dr Kelii Akina, PhD   January 19, 2017

HONOLULU, HI- Today, OHA Trustee Keli‘i Akina, Ph.D. led the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Resource Management Committee in questioning accounting firm Spire Hawaii and OHA CEO Kamana’opono Crabbe over a contract for financial consulting services that ballooned from an initial $95,000 commitment to $723,000 from 2014 to 2016.
Trustee Akina transmitted his analysis[1] of Spire’s work to RM Chair Hulu Lindsey after giving representatives from Spire an opportunity to answer his questions about Spire’s duplication of research that OHA administration was or should have already been doing, and the existence of an actionable plan.  In response to Trustee Akina’s questioning, Spire’s Executive Vice President, Rodney Lee, confirmed that no actionable plan has been created, and that the substance of their work thus far has been “essentially guidance.”

Trustee Akina then prompted CEO Crabbe to explain why the contract was modified four times, resulting in significant changes to the scope of services required of Spire.  Trustee Akina raised the question as to whether state procurement law had been followed in the multiple increases to the award given the contractor.

In his first week after assuming office in December 2016, Trustee Akina transmitted his own report[2], “Crucial Recommendations for Fiscal Sustainability,” to the Board of Trustees.  In his report, Trustee Akina made specific recommendations for maintaining the intergenerational equity of the public lands trust by controlling spending, raising revenues and urging his fellow Trustees to show leadership and fiscal discipline.
“In order to meet the needs of OHA’s beneficiaries for housing, jobs, education and health care, it is important to run a tight ship financially. We as Trustees have a fiduciary duty to ensure that OHA’s assets are protected and grow.” Trustee Akina said.


OHA Trustee Keliʻi Akina, Ph.D., is a community leader who is known for the phrase he has coined, "E Hana Kākou" - Let's work together! Over the past several years as a public policy adviser at the legislative, congressional and international levels, Dr. Akina’s mission has been to preserve the Aloha Spirit by which native Hawaiians and people of all races are welcomed and encouraged to work together for a better future for all our keiki. He is president and CEO of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, a nonprofit, independent think tank.

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed in this news release are the personal views of Trustee Akina and may not reflect the views of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs or its Board of Trustees.

1. PDF: Akina Questions SPIRE Pacific Contract
2. Crucial Recommendations for Fiscal Sustainability
OHA pays $50K: Sex harassment claim against Peter Apo

By Selected News Articles @ 1:58 PM
OHA settles sexual harassment claim against Peter Apo for $50K

UPDATE: My Conversation with OHA Sex Harassment Victim

HNN: …Sources said the former OHA staffer accused Apo of inappropriately touching her several times in 2015.

People familiar with the deal said that the woman also alleged that Apo was using his state office for his private business.

"This is wrong. It's using trust funds to cover up inappropriate sexual activity of an elected official and quite frankly he should be made to pay his own costs and removed from office," said Hawaiian activist and attorney Mililani Trask. "Fifty thousand Hawaiian trust dollars were expended to cover up a personal problem of an elected official."

OHA declined comment and sources said the settlement came with no admission of wrongdoing. Apo also denied the allegations….

Sources said the woman, who wants to remain anonymous, worked at OHA for several years.

Trask said she spoke with the woman early last year. Trask said the woman faced retaliation at OHA after she complained.

"She told me at the time that she had been placed on leave with pay. That was changed to leave without pay. She basically got a notice to clean up her office and get out," Trask said.

OHA hired an outside attorney to investigate the woman's claims but sources say the lawyer's report has not been shared with the full board.

The secret settlement is one reason OHA's new board Chairwoman Rowena Akana is calling for an investigation into OHA's finances.

"At this point, I think we have to demand a forensic audit. And many of the candidates this last election" were calling for an audit, Trask said.

The state auditor's office has already started its own financial review which is expected to be completed this summer….
read … $50,000

  *   *   *   *   *

Coverage draws a classic non-denial from Apo ….

Statement from OHA Trustee Peter Apo:

The news media, through Mililani Trask, raised questions about my personal and professional character, and my conduct as a Trustee of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. Ms. Trask is a defeated OHA candidate with no direct knowledge concerning me or my actions as an OHA Trustee. While I cannot comment directly on her allegations, I can say that I have never broken trust with the OHA beneficiaries I serve.
I ask for a fair shake and before jumping to conclusions, consider the source of the report. I want to thank all of you who have reached out to me in friendship and support during this very painful time. Meanwhile, I will not be deterred from continuing my lifetime of public service to the people of Hawaii. E Ola Hawaii.

  *   *   *   *   *

Background: Ethics Complaint: OHA Insiders Take Kickbacks from Kakaako Makai Projects

Related: OHA trustee Peter Apo faces investigation into Kakaako Kickbacks

My Conversation with OHA Sex Harassment Victim
By News Release @ 8:10 PM



From Mililani Trask

Aloha Hawaiian Beneficiaries and Voters,     January 21, 2017

On January 17th, 2017, OHA Trustee Peter Apo responded to my live interview with reporter Rick Daysog of Hawaii News Now about recent revelations that the State Office of Hawaiian Affairs had settled out a Sexual Harassment claim against Trustee Apo by agreeing to pay $50,000.00 in Trust funds to keep the case from being filed during the election period. Trustee Apo claimed that I was a disgruntled candidate who lost the election and that my statements had no basis of fact.
In this email and others to follow, I am going to present information regarding OHA Trustee Peter Apo that I received personally and later filed with the State Ethics Commission as formal Complaints in March and April of 2016. Because no corrective action has been taken by the state regulatory bodies for months and because OHA continues to be plagued by in-fighting caused by the outgoing Trustee Majority, including Trustee Peter Apo, I have decided to reveal the information I have so that there will be more accountability and transparency in OHA.

I. Trustee Peter Apo’s Sexual Harassment Complaint 2015:

In early 2016 I received a call from a friend who asked me to meet someone who needed help. It was a young woman who had been working at OHA as a staffer for Trustee Peter Apo. She had been hired in 2015 to fill the staff vacancy left when Apo’s former aide, Makana Chai left for a job at Kamehameha Schools/Bishop Estate. The woman who I will refer to as the “victim” was looking for legal help to file a Sexual Harassment case against Apo & OHA and was afraid of retaliation.
I agreed, and met with her at a friend’s home. The meeting lasted 4 hours. During this time, I listened to her story and personally reviewed and copied several communications and documents she had from the OHA office.

She had just graduated from law school and went to OHA to “work for her people”. It was the fulfillment of her dream and she was thrilled to be working with Trustee Peter Apo, an OHA Board member. Soon after she began work her dreams were dashed. Apo began to make inappropriate sexual comments and she was regularly subjected to his harassing comments and sexual advances. Things got worse when she was required to travel to the neighbor islands for OHA BOT meetings and community hearings that required she stay at the same hotel he was booked at. She gave me the details that included inappropriate verbal harassment but also unconsented physical contact. After months of enduring this, she decided to file a formal Complaint with the OHA Administrator and Human Resources Staff. An effort was made to dissuade her but when she insisted, OHA Administration initiated their formal Sexual Harassment Complaint process. It involved an investigation by an independent attorney (OHA board attorney Bob Klein and Ernie Kimoto were conflicted out because they are attorneys for BOT Trustees). Following the investigation a report would be made to all parties including the employee and a resolution would be recommended. She went through the process, filed written statements, met with the attorney but was never given the final report. Instead, Apo told her he wanted to bring Makana Chai back and that she would be leaving her present employer to return to OHA. The Administrator placed the victim on leave with pay but later this was changed to leave without pay, and termination.
When I met with her she had already interviewed several attorneys who specialized in Sexual Harassment cases and who were reviewing her case, but she had not retained counsel formally. At our meeting she showed me several documents from OHA. She said that she had come under pressure from Apo to do work that did not relate to OHA. It was work for his private company, The Peter Apo Company. She told me that Trustee Apo’s office and work computer were filled with data & correspondence relating to his private company. This included correspondence relating to articles for his Civil Beat contract, private business meetings with Peter Apo Company clients, billing statements for his private company and even a monthly and weekly calendar of meetings he attended with his OHA secretaries for private business purposes. She showed me these documents all of which verified use of OHA staff, equipment., financial resources and offices during working hours for Peter Apo Company.

When I asked her why she had removed the data from her office at OHA, she said she was afraid because she knew it was not right to use a State office for private business and that she was worried that when this misuse was made public she would be blamed because she had been Apo’s staffer & people would think she had been the secretary who broke the law. She showed me several documents sent out by other Apo staffers. She said she personally never performed any task for Apo’s company. I asked if I could copy the documents and told her I was going to use them to file an Ethics Complaint as a beneficiary. She agreed to allow me to copy the documents. This is how I acquired the data I used in my interview with Hawaii News Now and Rick Daysog.

In March and April of 2016, I and another beneficiary who have worked together for OHA accountability and transparency filed two Ethics Complaints with the State Ethics Commission on these and other facts demonstrating extensive violations of State law at OHA. The election was held in November, 2016, and 7 months later. No corrective action was ever taken by the State Ethics Commission. I have also received credible information that several other Ethics Complaints have been filed by Trustees of OHA, Beneficiaries and staff, none of which have ever been acted on.

I do not retract or regret the statements I made to Hawaii News Now last week. I thank Hawaii News Now for having the integrity to seek out, confirm and report on the activities of publicly elected officials whose conduct violates our Sate laws.
Over the next few days, I will be publishing more data on Apo’s use of the OHA offices for personal business to advance his contract with Civil Beat, to obtain benefits for himself and friends relating to the Kaka’ako development and other questionable transactions.

I call on Peter Apo to come out publicly and admit or deny that an OHA staffer filed a Sexual Harassment claim against him in 2015 and that a Settlement was reached with OHA agreeing to a settlement paid with Public Trust funds belonging to Hawaiian beneficiaries.

Today, women are marching nationwide and in Hawaii for equality & fair treatment. We cannot and should not tolerate Sexual Harassment of women in the workplace. Government officials, whether elected or appointed, who engage in Sexual Harassment should be removed from office. Peter Apo should resign his office and repay any money taken from our peoples trust for his misdeeds.

Tomorrow I will address how Peter Apo has used the OHA office, staff and trust resources to further his private contract with Civil Beat.

For the purpose of transparency and accountability, I am confirming that I have forwarded this public communication to all 9 members of the OHA Board of Trustees including Trustee Peter Apo.


Mililani B. Trask
OHA Beneficiary

Auditor: HART Audit Not Started
By News Release @ 11:56 PM
by Honolulu County Auditor, January 11, 2017

The Honorable Ron Menor, Chair and Members Honolulu City Council
Subject: Office of the City Auditor’s Quarterly Report as of December 31, 2016
This report provides the Honolulu City Council with an update on the activities of the Office of the City Auditor (OCA) and summarizes our Fiscal Year 2016-17 Work Plan activities.

Projects Completed
  • Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). Financial audit of city and county financial statements for FY2016. Audit results by external auditors under OCA contract completed. CAFR issued December 2016.
  • City and County of Honolulu - Public Transportation System - Bus and Paratransit Operations, Financial Statements and Supplemental Schedules, June 30, 2016. Report issued December 2016.
  • City and County of Honolulu - Sewer Fund Financial Statements, June 30, 2016. Report issued December 2016.
Projects in Process
  • Audit of the City’s Section 8 Tenant-Based Assistance Program (Resolution 15-281,CD1). Fieldwork completed. Draft report in process.
  • Audit of the City’s Recycling Program (Resolution 15-315). Fieldwork in process.
  • Audit of How Domestic Violence Cases Are Handled, Processed, and Resolved by the City (Resolution 16-1). Fieldwork incomplete due to Prosecuting Attorney Office delays in responding to data requests.
  • Audit of the City’s Bulky Item Collection Service. Fieldwork in process.
  • Audit of the City’s Homeless Programs. Fieldwork completed. Draft report underway.
  • Audit of the Honolulu Ethics Commission (Resolution 16-164, CD1). Request for proposals issued. Evaluation team is evaluating the proposals received.
  • Service Efforts and Accomplishments (SEA) Report (FY 2016). Report contains citywide and department specific statistics, information and data on city missions, goals, services and programs. Report quantifies inputs, outputs, performance measures, comparisons, and trends over five years. This is the seventh SEA for Honolulu. Fieldwork is underway.
  • National Citizen Survey supplemental reports to SEA:
    • National Citizen Survey (NCS) City and County of Honolulu (2016) Community Livability Report
    • National Citizen Survey (NCS) City and County of Honolulu (2016) Dashboard Summary of Findings Report
    • National Citizen Survey (NCS) City and County of Honolulu (2016)Trends Over Time Report
    • National Citizen Survey (NCS) City and County of Honolulu (2016) Technical Appendices Citizen questionnaires received. NCS analysis and statistical projections of results underway.
  • Financial Audit of the City and County of Honolulu for Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2016 - Management Letter. Draft report in progress.
  • Single Audit of Federal Financial Assistance Programs. Draft report in progress.
Projects Not Started or Suspended
  • Citizen-Centric Report 2016
  • Review of City Fire Operations
  • Review of City Public Building and Electrical Maintenance
  • Audit of City Grants Recipients
  • Audit of P-Card Purchases. Ongoing review of FY2016/FY2017 p-card purchases.
  • Audit of the Honolulu Authority For Rapid Transportation (HART) (Follow-Up)
  • Audit Recommendations Status Report. Follow-up of prior outstanding audit recommendations.
  • Audit of the Environmental Services Wastewater Contracts and Procurement Practices (Resolution 12-150, CD1) related to Synagro and Beachwalk projects.
  • Office of the City Auditor Annual Report
Outstanding Council Resolutions
  • None
We will continue to provide the Honolulu City Council and the public with information on city programs and operations in support of the openness and transparency in government initiatives. We will also continue the important work of pursuing accountability, efficiency, effectiveness, and economy in government operations for the City and County of Honolulu.
Respectfully Submitted,
Edwin S.W. Young
City Auditor
c: Mayor Kirk Caldwell Roy Amemiya, Jr., Managing Director Nelson Koyanagi, Jr., Director, Department of Budget and Fiscal Services Glen Takahashi, City Clerk Charmaine Doran, Director, Office of Council Services

News Release from FCC

WASHINGTON, July 15, 2016 – The Federal Communications Commission’s Enforcement Bureau today announced that it has reached a settlement with Blue Jay Wireless to resolve an investigation into whether the company improperly enrolled several thousand Hawaiian customers as eligible for enhanced Tribal support reimbursements from the FCC’s Lifeline program.

The Lifeline program provides a discount on phone service so that low-income consumers have access to the communications tools necessary to connect with jobs, family, and emergency services. Qualifying low-income consumers who reside on Tribal lands, which include Hawaiian Home Lands in the State of Hawaii, are eligible for higher support from the Lifeline program (up to an additional $25 per month). Under the settlement, Blue Jay will reimburse the Universal Service Fund approximately $2 million and adopt substantial compliance procedures.

“The Lifeline program is vital to millions of consumers in cities, rural areas, and tribal lands who rely upon it every day to connect with loved ones, interview for jobs, and contact emergency services,” said Enforcement Bureau Chief Travis LeBlanc. “This settlement makes clear that no Lifeline provider should turn a blind eye to potential fraud on the program.”

The Enforcement Bureau’s Universal Service Fund Strike Force conducted the investigation of Blue Jay, which is headquartered in Texas and is eligible to participate in Lifeline in 17 states and Puerto Rico. The investigation found that Blue Jay had incorrectly requested and received Lifeline Tribal reimbursements for enrolled consumers who did not reside on Hawaiian Home Lands.

In 2014, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission staff informed Blue Jay that the number of Tribal consumers it was claiming appeared to exceed the number of households on Hawaiian Home Lands. Despite knowing that Blue Jay could be improperly claiming enhanced Tribal support reimbursements, Blue Jay continued to seek reimbursement for those improper consumers while it sought to gather more accurate information about its Hawaiian Home Lands Tribal consumers.

Today’s settlement ensures a total of $2,002,000 in reimbursements by Blue Jay to the Universal Service Fund, including the company’s forfeiture of $918,010 in Lifeline disbursements that the Commission has already frozen. Blue Jay also will develop and implement a compliance plan to ensure appropriate procedures are incorporated into its business practices to prevent the enrollment of ineligible Tribal consumers, including the use of an approved software tool to identify and verify the accuracy of consumers’ self-certification of their residency on Tribal Lands.

Last year, the Commission sought public comment on whether to require additional evidence of residency on Tribal lands beyond self-certification and how carriers should provide proof of eligibility to prevent waste, fraud and abuse of enhanced support. More information can be found here:

This is the second Lifeline enforcement action this year. In April, the Commission announced that it planned to fine Total Call Mobile $51 million for apparently enrolling tens of thousands of ineligible and duplicate consumers in the Lifeline program. A copy of the Total Call Mobile Notice of Apparent Liability can be found here:

Today’s Consent Decree with Blue Jay Wireless can be found here:

* * * * *

Blue Jay Closes FCC Investigation With Commitments To Preserve And Protect The Integrity Of The Lifeline Program

News Release from Blue Jay Wireless

DALLAS, July 15, 2016 -- Today, Blue Jay entered into a settlement and consent decree with the Federal Communications Commission's Enforcement Bureau that closes an investigation and an audit appeal involving the company's provision of Lifeline services to eligible subscribers in Hawaii. The settlement memorializes Blue Jay's process for verifying self-certifications of subscribers seeking the enhanced Lifeline benefit available to residents of Hawaiian Home Lands, which included voluntarily building its own geo-mapping tool.

In a recently concluded audit, USAC concluded that this process was "conservative to the Fund" because FCC rules require only applicant self-certification. The settlement also allows Blue Jay to make good on a prior commitment to "make the Fund whole" for enhanced Lifeline benefits provided based on self-certifications of residency on Hawaiian Home Lands that were later determined by Blue Jay to be inaccurate.

Blue Jay CEO David Wareikis explained that "Blue Jay made the commitment to make the Fund whole because it did not want to be seen as benefiting in any way from erroneous self-certifications made by subscribers." Wareikis also noted that the agreement reached "contains no finding or admission of wrongdoing by Blue Jay, and affirms Blue Jay's good standing as an ETC." In addition, he explained that "the financial terms of the settlement do not involve a fine or a civil penalty, and instead allow Blue Jay to reduce its future payments from the Fund."

Blue Jay is pleased to have successfully concluded this FCC inquiry and USAC audit in this manner and acknowledges the cooperation of the Enforcement Bureau, Wireline Competition Bureau and USAC in bringing the investigation and the audit appeal to closure in a manner that preserves and protects the Lifeline program and avoids potential litigation. Mr. Wareikis further affirmed, "Blue Jay is committed to leading the industry in compliance and self-regulates to maintain the highest standards of compliance across all aspects of its business."

* * * * *

JDSupra: Tribal Enrollment Inquiry Leads to $2 Million FCC Settlement with Blue Jay Wireless

SA: Errors cost wireless provider $2M -- “Former PUC Commissioner Carl Caliboso, now a private attorney with Yamamoto Caliboso, had also questioned the company’s practices in a letter to the PUC in November 2014. He pointed out that 2010 U.S. census data listed 7,294 households living on Hawaiian homelands. However, in the first six months of 2014, Blue Jay Wireless had signed up about 11,000 customers who claimed to reside on Hawaiian homelands. Only one Lifeline subsidy is allowed per household.”

The OTHER DHHL Federal Telephone Scam: Al Hee Finally Ordered to Report to Prison

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