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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, November 14, 2009

Move to block layoffs denied

Advertiser Staff

Another court challenge to the legality of state worker layoffs has been turned aside.

Circuit Judge Karl Sakamoto yesterday refused to grant an injunction that would block layoffs planned by Gov. Linda Lingle's administration.

The injunction was sought by attorney Charles Khim on behalf of former Big Island correctional officers Gerald Kaleiki and Norman Lyman.

The two men worked at Kulani Correctional Facility on the Big Island, which was closed earlier this year in one of many fiscal belt-tightening measures by the Lingle administration.

The state closed Kulani Correctional Facility in September. Its 120 inmates were placed in other state prisons. Kulani had a staff of 76.

Khim argued that furloughs of teachers and other state employees have made further measures such as layoffs unnecessary.

Sakamoto disagreed, refusing to issue the injunction.