There is an update on the stalled negotiations between the state and the teachers union over a possible new contract.
Governor Neil Abercrombie had this to say Thursday morning:
"We're always available to settle soon. All it takes is conversation and I'm very hopeful that we can begin that conversation."
Thursday night, KITV learned the state is interested in involving a third party to get that done.
On Tuesday, Abecrombie sent a letter to the president of the Hawaii Teachers Association Wil Okabe.
He said the state would like to use a federal mediator to try and reach an agreement.
"If there is any possibility that FMCS could help to reconcile our differences, and then it would well be worth a try, and would be far better than doing nothing," said Abercrombie.
Reporter Lara Yamada talked with Okabe late Thursday night.
He said the union will be meeting next week to discuss how they will respond.
He said a federal mediator would help to bring both sides to the negotiating table in a neutral and non-binding way with the goal of reaching an agreement.
The state presented a new offer to the HSTA last week -- no specifics on that offer yet -- but Okabe said they want to stick to the contract that teachers ratified in June.