By CATHY BUSSEWITZ
HONOLULU (AP) - A legislative panel is recommending that state Senate approve Gov. David Ige's nominees to lead the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.
The Senate Committee on Hawaiian Affairs approved Jobie Masagatani Monday to remain at the department as chairwoman. She has been serving in the role since 2012.
The panel also approved William Aila to be her deputy director.
Both nominations now go to the full Senate.
The department administers programs designed to help Native Hawaiians with land, housing and finances.
Opponents say Masagatani has been unwilling to work out differences with various stakeholder groups.
Supporters say Masagatani has done her best to collaborate and has made progress after inheriting a department with a lot of problems. They say the department needs continuous leadership to make positive changes.