City rail votes could be nullified, investigation shows - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

City rail votes could be nullified, investigation shows

Honolulu Hale Honolulu Hale
Romy Cachola Romy Cachola
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

An ethics investigation into former Councilman Romy Cachola has revealed apparent widespread practice on the council of ignoring the gift laws. Based on business records of key lobbyists for the Cachola case, the ethics commission has now opened additional investigations of up to half a dozen current and former councilmembers.

Like Cachola, they potentially accepted free meals and entertainment and then voted illegally. The investigation may lead to additional lawsuits against the city's controversial rail project, because votes in favor of project details may now be under a legal cloud.

City ethics laws say councilmembers who vote on a measure without declaring an illegal gift can have their vote nullified. Cachola, who released records today, told Hawaii News Now that there are a number of rail votes where the result could be reversed because several of his colleagues had taken the same free gifts from lobbyists and then voted illegally.

We will have complete team coverage on this story tonight on Hawaii News Now beginning at 5 p.m.

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