8 Dec 2010

Hawaii has new Governor

8:54 am on 8 December 2010

Neil Abercrombie has been sworn in as the seventh governor of Hawaii where he pledged to restore confidence in the U.S. state's government.

The 72-year-old Democrat called for a new sense of civic courage and a public conscience consistent with the message of aloha.

Mr Abercrombie spent four decades as a legislator in the state House and Senate, the City Council and the U.S. House.

Mr Abercrombie announced he was releasing 67 million US dollars from the state's hurricane relief fund to cover the cost of ending teacher furloughs on classroom instruction days, and 23.7 million US from the state's rainy day fund for social-service programs.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports this money had been approved by the Legislature last session but had been withheld by former Governor Linda Lingle due to budget concerns.

Brian Schatz is Hawaii's new lieutenant governor.