News at Nine, August 29 - Ka Leo O Hawaii: News

News at Nine, August 29

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Posted: Thursday, August 29, 2013 9:00 am

Latest draft of gay marriage bill expands the religious exemption

On Wednesday, Governor Neil Abercrombie released the latest draft of a gay marriage bill that expands the religious exemption for clergy and churches.

According to the draft, clergy and others have a constitutional right to refuse to perform gay marriages and churches that reserve religious facilities for weddings by members only and do not operate the

religious facilities as for-profit businesses would be able to decline gay marriages.

Clergy and churches that refuse gay marriages would not be subject to any fine, penalty, injunction, administrative proceeding or civil liability.

Abercrombie invited state lawmakers to provide feedback on the bill over the next week before he decides on a special session.

Source: Honolulu Star-Advertiser

Obama said no decision has been made on Syria air strikes

President Barack Obama says that no decision has been made on an air strike in Syria; he also warns the Assad regime its actions have 'international consequences'.

President Obama said he is consulting with the international community and has no interest in any kind of open-ended conflict with Syria. He said the countries that break international norms on weapons like chemical weapons have to be held accountable for.

Britain's resolution to the UN security council condemns the alleged chemical attack last week and calls for the authorization of "necessary measures to protect civilians" in the country. Russia is expected to oppose any military action towards Syria.

Last week, a chemical weapons attack claimed the lives of hundreds in Damascus to the Assad regime.

Source: The Guardian

Labor dispute among UH Athletic Department workers impacts the department

About 40 workers have been forced to give up overtime pay after a memorandum of agreement with the Hawaii Government Employees Association (HGEA) union expired on June 30, impacting the university's facility workers, ticket staff, and athletic trainers.

UH Athletics Director, Ben Jay, said there are times when workers will have to work over 40 hours and the previous memorandum of agreement covered them in how they were being compensated for their overtime. He said the department has asked its staff to make adjustments in their schedules to cover during a 40 hour week.

The Norm Chow weekly press conferences is not expected to be held this season due to this dispute.

Jay said he is personally working to resolve this issue.

Source: KHON2