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State briefs for March 15

Galera drops bid for state superintendent

HONOLULU (AP) — A retired public school principal withdrew his application for state superintendent amid complaints that he had an advantage as a former state Board of Education member and friend of Gov. David Ige.

Darrel Galera announced Monday he no longer is seeking the position. He did not respond to requests for comment, but offered an apology to Ige, Board of Education members and others affected by his decision.

“I have decided (to) withdraw my application so the search can continue without the distraction caused by my application,” Galera said in an email. “My overarching goal is to transform our education system to provide our students with educational opportunities that are second to none.”

Galera announced last week that he was resigning from the BOE to apply for the schools chief position.

Shortly after he announced his intention, the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation said it was withdrawing a $50,500 grant it awarded to help the board hire a search firm, saying they worried about the “integrity” of the search.

The board was set to formally initiate the search Friday, but an announcement posted on its website said it was suspending its efforts following the foundation’s decision.

“We appreciate the support of the foundation and are hopeful that the issues can be resolved and the foundation can continue its support of a fair and transparent search for the Superintendent,” the board said in a statement.

US attorney retires after DOJ asks for her resignation

HONOLULU (AP) — The U.S. attorney for Hawaii retired after the Justice Department asked her and other prosecutors held over from President Barack Obama’s administration to step down.

A news release from Monday says U.S. Attorney Florence Nakakuni’s retirement went into effect Saturday.

Obama appointed her to the post in 2009. She was the first woman to serve as the presidentially appointed U.S. attorney in the Hawaii district.

She previously served as an assistant U.S. attorney since 1985. Her roles included chief of the drug and organized crime section and chief of the organized crime strike force unit.

First Assistant U.S. Attorney Elliot Enoki is acting U.S. attorney.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions last week asked for resignations from 46 prosecutors as part of a transition in administrations.


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