Tag Archives: Hawaii

Kaiser expands footprint on Maui

Source: Kristen Consillio, Honolulu Star Advertiser, April 4, 2018
Kaiser Permanente Hawaii has acquired 6.2 acres under its Wailuku Medical Office for $22 million. The state’s largest health maintenance organization — both a medical provider and health insurer with more than 255,000 members statewide — said the investment “allows for greater flexibility and certainty around future operational costs. … The HMO assumed control of three Maui County hospitals on July 1 in the largest privatization in state history. The HMO pledged to inject more resources into Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital & Clinic and Lanai Community Hospital, the only acute-care facilities for about 200,000 residents and visitors in Maui County. …


HGEA nurses disgruntled over Kaiser management
Source: Melissa Tanji, Maui News, February 22, 2018
The head of about 800 union workers at Maui Memorial Medical Center said Maui Health System officials need “to step up their game” and start fulfilling “the bill of goods” touted by the private entity to improve former public hospitals on Maui. Randy Perreira, executive director of the Hawaii Government Employees Association, said on Wednesday that in the past several weeks, union hospital workers have been reaching out to the union to express concern about inadequate staffing, mainly nurses, along with not having enough supplies or staff support at Maui’s only acute-care hospital. He reported that employees believe that the July 1 changeover of operations from the quasi-public Hawaii Health Systems Corp. to Kaiser-affiliated Maui Health System at Maui Memorial, Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital has not been as rosy as painted recently in the media. …

The neurosurgeon is out
Source: Chris Sugidono, Maui News, February 11, 2018
Maui Health System is in labor negotiations with the Hawaii Government Employees Association and United Public Workers on the unions’ first contract with the new management. HGEA represents 775 nurses and other health care professionals, while UPW has roughly 500 members working in maintenance, food service and laundry.  HGEA Executive Director Randy Perreira said in an email that the union’s goal is to ensure the investments from taxpayers and Kaiser “results in the best patient care and services” for Maui County. He added that he would like Kaiser to retain its current employees and recruit highly qualified and experienced “long-term” health care professionals. …

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Ige appoints new director for troubled state tax department

Source: Kevin Dayton, Honolulu Star Advertiser, December 6, 2017
Gov. David Ige today named Linda Chu Takayama as the new director of the state Department of Taxation in an effort to quickly replace outgoing director Maria Zielinski in what has emerged as a pivotal position in Ige’s administration.  Takayama is a lawyer who now serves as Ige’s director of the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, and previously served as state insurance commissioner. Zielinski abruptly resigned effective Tuesday in the wake of a report that revealed state tax officials instructed a supposedly independent consultant on which subjects it should address in its monitoring reports on the progress of a new $60 million tax computer system. … Ige is under intense pressure to efficiently execute the $60 million contract to replace the tax department’s old computer system. State government has had an embarrassing history of botched computer projects dating back to previous administrations, and the computer system for collecting state taxes is a critical piece of state infrastructure.  The project has already stirred controversy. Randy Perreira, executive director of the Hawaii Government Employees Association, wrote to Gov. David Ige on Oct. 31 to object to the decision to take control of the project away from Zielinski and TSM Program Manager Robert Su earlier this year. …

Ige applauds work in progress at rental car hub

Source: Brian Perry, Maui News, October 6, 2017
The governor also expressed support for a Senate bill — now pending before state lawmakers — that would create the Hawaii Airport Corp. as an entity to consolidate the ownership, control and management of the state’s airport system. It would take that responsibility from the state’s Transportation Department, although that department would be administratively attached to the corporation. Senate Bill 658 advanced to a conference committee this year, but lawmakers were unable to achieve final passage of the measure supported by the Department of Transportation. Next year, legislators may pick up where they left off .Referring to the Kahului rental car facility’s construction, Ige said Transportation Department Director Ford Fuchigami and his team “have done a terrific job in moving the project forward, but we are pursuing the airport authority because we believe even with the work that has been done we can do better.” … Funds for construction of the consolidated rental car facility come from a pool of money generated by customers who pay $4.50 a day to rent vehicles in Hawaii. Funds for the airport corporation would come from fees paid by airlines and other airport vendors.Hawaii Government Employees Association Executive Director Randy Perreira submitted testimony opposed to the bill. …  “The bill advances the notion that such a corporation addresses delayed decision-making and inefficiency resulting from multiple agencies involved in the planning, development and operation of Hawaii’s airport infrastructure,” Perreira said. “We assert that multiple agencies, each with their own area of responsibility, are rightly involved to collectively protect the public interest.”


Effort to establish airports corporation advances
Source: Ivy Ashe, Hawaii Tribune Herald, March 24, 2017

Another attempt to consolidate management and planning for Hawaii’s airports is making its way through the state House of Representatives.  The measure was first brought to the Senate last year by the late Hawaii Island Sen. Gilbert Kahele. That legislation died during conferencing.  This year’s bill, Senate Bill 658, was introduced by Sen. Lorraine Inouye, D-Hilo, Hamakua, Kohala, Waimea, Waikoloa, Kona, and would establish a Hawaii airport corporation comprised of a governor-appointed board of directors. … The measure has been opposed by labor groups such as the Hawaii Government Employees Association. In written testimony during Senate hearings, executive director Randy Perreira stated having multiple agencies involved in airport management was a way to “collectively protect the public interest.”  “The public benefits from the involvement of the Department of Health with respect to addressing environmental concerns, the Board of Land and Natural Resources with respect to protecting public lands and the Department of Human Resources Development with respect to enforcing the civil service law to render impartial service to the public,” he wrote. …

Update public on airport security

Source: Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 23 June 2017 

Last summer the state awarded Securitas a three-year, $130 million contract for security at all Hawaii airports. …The Hawaii Government Employees Association, meanwhile, is questioning whether private security guards are qualified or legally authorized to have police powers. The union contends that, over the years, the DOT has allowed Securitas to expand its role. …


State says it ‘didn’t’ fire deputy sheriffs at airport, but wants to re-examine duties
Source: Hawaii News Now, June 20, 2017
The state Transportation Department did confirm that it had given the Public Safety Department a 180-day notice of its intent to terminate an agreement to station 57 deputy sheriffs at the airport.  But Fuchigami said he wants to work out a new agreement that gives deputy sheriffs new duties and better coordinates security operations at the airport. … Despite reassurances that the sheriff’s department will remain part of the airport’s security detail the sheriff’s union believes this shake up is an attempt to drive it’s deputies out.   “That is our biggest concern that this is just another step toward privatizing law enforcement at the airport and that is something we violently object to,” said Randy Perreira, HGEA Executive Director.

Lawmaker demands answers after state boots deputy sheriffs from Honolulu airport patrols
Source: Manolo Morales, KHON, June 19, 2017

Major changes are in the works at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport with regards to security. The Hawaii Department of Transportation sent a letter to the Department of Public Safety to say deputy sheriffs will no longer be patrolling the airport. The Department of Public Safety tells us it has 57 deputy sheriffs and two civilians working at Honolulu’s airport. … Deputy sheriffs belong to the Hawaii Government Employees Association. The union filed a lawsuit against the state last year because it allowed Securitas to take over some of the law enforcement duties at all of Hawaii’s airports. We asked about this latest issue, and received the following statement from Randy Perreira, HGEA executive director: “HGEA is aware of the letter from the State Department of Transportation to the Department of Public Safety regarding termination of services of State Sheriffs at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. We are working to get more information regarding this issue.

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Maui Hospital Transition May Proceed; Injunction Dissolved

Source: Joe Kent, The Maui News, January 21, 2018
One of the biggest savings will likely come from control over labor costs. Previously, the hospitals were left out of negotiations with their union employees; instead, such talks were handled at the state level. Now the Maui Health System can, for the first time, negotiate directly with the United Public Workers and Hawaii Government Employees Association unions. This is expected to result in better use of the hospital staffs and a big cost savings. …


Souki: Hospital subsidies will return to budget
Source: Colleen Uechi, Maui News, March 29, 2017

State lawmakers said Tuesday that funds for the future operation of three Maui County hospitals under Kaiser Permanente likely will be returned to the budget, after the House Finance Committee removed it earlier this month, concerning hospital officials. House Speaker Joe Souki of Maui said Tuesday that “there’s a general agreement between both sides” that funding for the hospitals would be restored in conference budget talks. … But the transition stalled due to a United Public Workers lawsuit claiming that the public-private partnership impaired a contract between the state and the union. By the time both parties had reached a settlement, Kaiser and the state had decided to push the transition date to July 1 of this year.

Interim HHSC Maui Region chief named
Source: Maui News, September 24, 2016

Longtime Maui Memorial Medical Center Dr. Barry Shitamoto has been selected as interim chief executive officer of Hawaii Health Systems Corp.’s Maui Region, effective Nov. 1, according to an announcement. Shitamoto will replace Wesley Lo, current Maui Region chief executive office, who announced earlier this month that he would leave Oct. 31 to take over as chief executive officer at Hale Makua Health Services. … Last year, lawmakers passed a measure to privatize Maui Region hospitals. And, in January, the governor signed a deal to transfer hospital operations to Kaiser Permanente. The transfer was supposed to take effect July 1, but it has been blocked by hospital worker unions. Kaiser has said it plans to take over hospital operations July 1, a year later than the original transfer date. The current changeover date is a day after the expiration of labor contracts with the United Public Workers union and Hawaii Government Employees Association. The UPW has 536 blue-collar employees at Maui Region hospitals, and the HGEA represents 900 white-collar employees, including nurses and supervisors. …

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Prisoners in Hawaii Are Being Sent to Die in Private Prisons in Arizona

Source: Gabriel Thompson, VICE, March 13, 2017

… Over the next three years, Johnathan [Namauleg] bounced from a Maui jail to two different prisons. … What his parents didn’t know at first was that in 1995, when Johnathan was just two years old, Hawaii had begun sending prisoners to the mainland. The policy was proposed as a temporary measure to relieve overcrowding. But more than 20 years later, 1,300 inmates—43 percent of Hawaii’s state prisoners—remain in the continental United States, inside a notorious private facility in the Arizona desert, midway between Tucson and Phoenix, nearly 3,000 miles from home. And that was where Johnathan’s prison odyssey would end in his mysterious death. It’s hard to know what happens behind the prison’s walls. The Saguaro Correctional Center—named after a cactus native to the Sonoran Desert and based in the small town of Eloy—is run by the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), recently renamed CoreCivic, the country’s largest private-prison firm. The company isn’t legally obligated to respond to public information requests, and, as I and others have discovered, Hawaii officials tend to follow CCA’s lead, putting up roadblocks to even the most basic questions. Publicly, Hawaii has released little more than this: On the evening of August 6, 2015, Johnathan was found in his Arizona cell, facedown and unconscious, and was declared dead later that night, several days before what would have been his 22nd birthday.

… The origins of the Hawaii-to-Arizona prison pipeline can be traced to 1985, when prison overcrowding and an ACLU lawsuit led to federal oversight of Hawaii’s prisons. … Hawaii’s solution to prison overcrowding brought new problems—chief among them oversight. … Between 2000 and 2008, Hawaii’s inmate population grew by roughly a fifth, to nearly 6,000. Hawaii’s relationship with CCA deepened with the opening, in 2007, of the Saguaro Correctional Center: Its 1,926 beds were contracted exclusively to handle Hawaii’s overflow. … Even those check marks are open to question. In 2010, staff from Hawaii’s state auditor tagged along as state contract monitors conducted a quarterly inspection of Saguaro. They watched as monitors accepted the testimony of CCA staff “without verifying their statements against documentary evidence” and concluded, in a lengthy report, that Hawaii “lacked objectivity” when monitoring CCA. The state has close ties to the company. Over the past four years, CCA has spent more than $450,000 to lobby Hawaiian politicians. …


Public Records on Hawaii Prisoners Held by CCA Will Cost You $23,000
Source: Rui Kaneya, Mother Jones, November 3, 2016

Each year, Hawaii spends tens of millions of dollars to house prisoners on the mainland, a practice that it has maintained for more than 25 years. But the state’s taxpayers are kept in the dark about much of what goes on at the Saguaro Correctional Center, a private Arizona prison where about 1,400 Hawaii prisoners are housed. … But we’re still waiting for much of the information we requested months ago. Now, the Department of Public Safety wants $23,000 to give us records that should be readily available. In February, we submitted a public records request, asking for a number of documents that would help us—and the public—better understand the Saguaro operation, which is handled by Corrections Corporation of America, a private prison contractor that owns and operates the Arizona facility. CCA’s problems at a number of its mainland facilities have been well-documented over many years. …

Secret Deals: Prison Operator Is Mum On Hawaii Court Cases
Source: Rui Kaneya, Honolulu Civil Beat, August 28, 2016

On Christmas Eve 2014, a high-profile lawsuit involving the brutal death of a Hawaii prisoner named Clifford Medina came to an official end: settlement out of court. It was an unceremonious, if predictable, finale to a legal saga that began two years earlier, when a team of attorneys sued the state and its mainland contractor, Corrections Corporation of America, on behalf of Medina’s family. … In the lawsuit, Medina’s family laid the blame squarely on CCA — and, by extension, the state. According to a 48-page complaint, Medina, diagnosed as moderately mentally retarded, was “particularly vulnerable to manipulation and violence by other inmates,” and CCA’s “pattern of greed-driven corner-cutting and short-staffing” failed to protect him. In the end, after many rounds of legal wrangling, the parties agreed to settle the lawsuit out of court. … But, to this day, much of the details surrounding the settlement — the amount of damages, as well as corrective steps, if any, that CCA promised to take — remain shrouded in secrecy. …

… In many ways, the case illustrates what typically happens when Saguaro prisoners and their families sue the state and CCA: settled quietly, with the terms kept out of the public eye. Kat Brady, coordinator of the Community Alliance on Prisons, says the practice flies in the face of “the principle of accountability and transparency.” … As a rule, when the state settles a lawsuit against any of its departments and employees, it must go through a vetting process: The Legislature has to sign off on the use of taxpayer dollars to pay for damages. … But the legislative scrutiny doesn’t extend to settlements involving Saguaro prisoners, thanks to a loophole: the indemnity clause in the state’s contract with CCA that requires the company to cover “all costs, attorney’s fees and other litigation expenses.” … In fact, under the state’s contract, the department is supposed to get semi-annual updates from CCA about news lawsuits filed by Hawaii prisoners and their families The department also required CCA to submit a five-year “history of the cases filed against it and/or its employees by inmates” as part of its bid for the state’s contract in 2011 and again this year. But, in its bids, CCA made it clear that the information is not meant for public inspection. “It is a unique compilation and is confidential and proprietary,” the company wrote. “Further, if vendors fear that reports of this nature will be released to public view, they would be reluctant to provide them via a procurement process, depriving the government of material that contributes to making an informed procurement decision in ‘frustration of a legitimate governmental function.’” …

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Hawaii Finds Itself Stuck As Others Abandon For-Profit Prisons

Source: Rui Kaneya, Honolulu Civil Beat, October 13, 2016

About a quarter of the state’s inmate population is housed in facilities run by a private contractor on the mainland. But although the tide has turned elsewhere, Hawaii Gov. David Ige said he sees no way it will change here anytime soon. “The practical reality is that there is a significant shortage of prison bed spaces in Hawaii,” Ige said in a statement last week to Civil Beat. “We have an obligation to treat our prisoners humanely and in a way that protects their rights. Halawa Correctional Facility is currently operating at maximum capacity and has been able to avoid dangerous levels of overcrowding because the state has the option of sending inmates to the contracted facility in Arizona.” … In fact, a handful of states have been doing just that — including Colorado, which has shut down four for-profit prisons since 2009, and Mississippi, which closed a violence-plagued prison last month, even though the state is still footing the bill for the prison’s construction. But it’s still unclear whether other states will begin shifting in the same direction given that for-profit companies are deeply entrenched in prison systems at the state level. Hawaii’s situation is a case in point: In August, the state awarded a new, three-year contract to Nashville, Tennessee-based Corrections Corporation of America, the largest for-profit prison company in the country, to house up to 1,926 Hawaii prisoners in Arizona. In fiscal year 2016, which ended June 30, CCA housed a daily average of 1,388 Hawaii prisoners at the Saguaro Correctional Center in Eloy, Arizona, about 70 miles southeast of Phoenix. That’s about a quarter of the state’s inmate population — the fourth-highest rate in the country, according to a 2015 report by the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics. … Four years ago, Hawaii adopted the Justice Reinvestment Initiative, an “evidence-based” measure similar to the reform efforts underway in Colorado and Mississippi. According to the Council of State Governments Justice Center, a nonprofit organization that provided technical assistance in crafting JRI, it held a lot of promise for Hawaii. By shifting resources to efforts that promote rehabilitation and reduce recidivism, the state could slash its overall inmate population by more than 1,000 by the end of fiscal year 2018 — enough to bring back a majority of prisoners from the mainland. But, as Civil Beat has reported, the initiative has so far failed to achieve its projected impacts. As of Sept. 26, the state still housed 5,836 inmates, only 224 fewer than when the initiative was adopted in June 2012. …

How Battles Over Privatization Played Out in Hawaii’s Courts

Source: Barry Shanoff, Waste 360, June 15, 2016

Nearly 20 years ago, the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled that an agreement between the County of Hawaii and a private contractor for the operation of a county landfill violated civil service laws and merit principles. Adopting the “nature of the services” test, the court held that the civil service, as defined by state law, encompasses those services that have been “customarily and historically” provided by civil servants. … Later, after the city balked at making good on its promises, the UPW took the matter to the state labor relations board. Following several appeals, the local circuit court ordered the city to honor its agreement. After unsuccessfully appealing the circuit court’s order to the state supreme court, the city restored formerly privatized front loader refuse collection services to multifamily properties and non-profit organizations. Regulated by state law and city ordinances, front loader services are part of the municipal solid waste system. The City Department of Environmental Services is the agency responsible for administering the collection and disposal of refuse. For approximately the last 10 years, six work crews have utilized seven front loader trucks to service 1,615 dumpsters twice a week for 181 multi-family residences and nonprofit entities, as well as some 50 city agencies. …

… In July 2014, after the City Council voted to end funding for front loader collection vehicles, the department’s director announced the discontinuation, effective January 31, 2015, of such services to previously served multi-unit residential properties and non-profit organizations. The department sent notices to the affected properties, urging them to make arrangements with private refuse hauling companies for collection services. … Seizing the momentum, UPW promptly filed a motion for summary judgment on its claims that the city’s decision to end front loader services involved prohibited privatization and violated civil service laws. The circuit court granted the motion and permanently enjoined the City from discontinuing public refuse collection and disposal services to the 181 properties. On appeal, the Supreme Court of Hawaii unanimously affirmed the lower court ruling for essentially the same reasons as articulated by the lower court. “[T]he broad definition of privatization as the ‘shift from government provision of functions and services to provision by the private sector,’ . . . encompasses the type of privatization that is at issue in this case: government shedding of service, or the situation when government decides to stop providing certain services and leaves it to private entities to fill the need,” the opinion stated. …


Hawaii Supreme Court hands city a setback with ruling on trash pickup
Source: Catherine Cruz, KITV, May 17, 2016

The United Public Workers union sued the city last year when it tried to terminate free service to multi-family apartments and condos, as well as to non-profits and churches. The Hawaii Supreme Court has now upheld a lower court’s decision saying that ending the front loader service violated civil service law and constitutional merit principles. The head of the city department that handles refuse pickup is disappointed, but said what matters now is that the city is down to only seven aging front loader trucks, and that’s not good. …

UPW suing city over change in garbage collection
Source: Jim Mendoza, HawaiiNewsNow, January 7, 2015

Starting on February 1, 181 churches, condominiums and non-profit groups will no longer have free trash collection from the city. They will have to pay private trash collectors. Richard Emery’s company Associa manages a dozen of the affected condo associations. …. .
Union files class-action lawsuit against Honolulu over trash hauling
Source: Duane Shimogawa, Pacific Business News, January 5, 2015

A union representing more than 100 public workers in Hawaii is suing the City and County of Honolulu over the city’s recent decision to privatize garbage collection services for about 111 condominiums and 70 private schools, churches and other nonprofit organizations across Oahu. The change is a result of a City Council decision to stop funding for future purchases of front-loading trucks for these trash services, and with no trucks to replace the old ones, the program is shutting down, as first reported by PBN.

Harbor privatization, body cameras lose out

Source: Bret Yager, West Hawaii Today, April 30, 2016

A bill that could have led to the privatization of Honokohau Harbor lost out despite support from the agency that oversees the facility. The bill could pave the way for Honokohau serving as a model for other small boat harbors around the state. The harbor’s current steward, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, supports opening harbors to public-private partnerships statewide, saying DLNR resources could be better directed to resource protection in nearshore waters. … The harbor — which has lacked needed repairs and upgrades for years — could have been managed by the county or placed under a county redevelopment authority similar to the one newly put in place on Hilo’s Banyan Drive.


State supports harbor privatization
Source: Bret Yager, West Hawaii Today, April 3, 2016

A bill to privatize Honokohau Harbor after years of disrepair is gaining steam at the Capitol. And the state agency which now oversees the facility is backing what could become a model for privatization of small boat harbors across Hawaii. Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairwoman Suzanne Case has told lawmakers the small boat harbors program needs to take a different direction. In written testimony, she is supporting opening up Honokohau to public-private partnerships — but she’d like to go even further and is seeking legislative support for making that option available at harbors statewide. … Supporters of a different approach to the state’s small boat harbors include Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi, the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce, Pursuit Sportfishing, Blue Ocean Mariculture, the Honolulu-based Ocean Tourism Coalition and others. The United Public Workers union opposes the bill, saying it fails to spell out control, responsibility and liability. The majority of submitted testimony favors the concept, however. And local input would be possible through a paradigm similar to the new county management authority that has been created for DLNR land on Banyan Drive, said Rick Gaffney, president of the Hawaii Fishing and Boating Association.

Privatization for Honokohau Harbor? Critics say state management is unresponsive to needs
Source: Brett Yager, West Hawaii Today, January 28, 2016

… The lack of progress in basic repair and maintenance of the harbor has been an ongoing issue, and served as the main impetus for the legislation. The bill authorizes the state Board of Land and Natural Resources to transfer operation and management of Honokohau to a county or community-based board, public-private partnership, or private entity. … Honokohau could be served well by a management authority similar to the newly proposed Banyan Drive Redevelopment Agency, a plan the county announced earlier this month to take over the role of overseeing leases and development in that area of Hilo, Gaffney said. DLNR has indicated it supports the idea. … Privatization of some of the state’s boat harbors has been talked about for decades, but the concept has always been met with sufficient resistance from harbor users that the efforts have been stymied. In 2001, the House passed a resolution to privatize the Ala Wai and Honokohau small boat harbors, but encountered a backlash from those who said lawmakers were trying to push the measure ahead without a public hearing.

‘Fragmented’ School Districts: A Complicated and Controversial Issue

Source: Mark Maciag, Governing, April 2016

Numbers such as these have long drawn the ire of policymakers, and in an era of budget cutbacks, “fragmented” school districts serve as prime targets for consolidation. At the beginning of this year, lawmakers in Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma all introduced legislation aimed at merging school districts or combining their administrative duties. But such proposals frequently are met with fierce opposition from parents and teachers. School districts with very small enrollments are actually quite common across the country. A Governing analysis of federal data from the 2013-2014 school year found that a third of all local districts were made up of only one or two public schools. Nearly half of all districts nationally — 46 percent — serve fewer than 1,000 students. While many of these districts are in rural or outlying areas, 2,050 are in metro areas. … But is such a system really more efficient? Elementary and secondary education accounted for 15 percent of Hawaii’s total state expenditures in fiscal 2014, compared with 20 percent for all states, according to a report by the National Association of State Budget Officers. Still, it’s difficult to gauge how much savings any particular consolidation would yield, given how differently districts are structured throughout the country. Oklahoma and other select states have already passed laws that cap local districts’ administrative costs. …


How Does School District Consolidation Affect Property Values? A Case Study of New York
Source: William D. Duncombe, John Yinger, Pengju Zhang, Public Finance Review, Vol. 44 no. 1, January 2016
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
This article explores the impact of school district consolidation on house values based on house sales in upstate New York State from 2000 to 2012. By combining propensity score matching (PSM) and double-sales data to compare house value changes in consolidating and comparable school districts, we find that, except in one relatively large district, consolidation has a negative impact on house values during the years right after it occurs and that this effect then fades away and is eventually reversed. This pattern suggests that it takes time either for the advantages of consolidation to be apparent or for the people who prefer consolidated districts to move in. Finally, as in previous studies, the long-run impacts of consolidation on house values are positive in census tracts that initially have low incomes, but negative in high-income census tracts, where parents may have a relatively large willingness to retain the nonbudgetary advantages of small districts.