Friday, December 7, 2018

Pearl Harbor anniversary commemorated, Hawaii Department of Education sued over Title IX female access to sports, Big Island beach reopens after lava flow, Patsy Mink statue unveiled, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

The USS Arizona burning after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, public domain photo
Hundreds to gather for 77th anniversary of attack on Pearl Harbor. As they do every year, hundreds of veterans, service members and dignitaries will solemnly gather Friday to mark the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Hawaii News Now.

Ceremonies mark 77th anniversary of Pearl Harbor attack. There will be a number of public events commemorating the date, including a ceremony at Barbers Point, which was also hit that day, and a parade through Waikiki. KHON2.

Pearl Harbor attack survivor remembers the day from afar. Retired U.S. Navy Cmdr. Don Long was alone on an anchored military seaplane in the middle of a bay across the island from Pearl Harbor when Japanese warplanes started striking Hawaii on December 7, 1941, watching from afar as the bombs and bullets killed and wounded thousands. Associated Press.

Pearl Harbor re-burials across the US give families closure. Some who died on Dec. 7, 1941, are finally being laid to rest in cemeteries across the United States. KITV.

Pouring of Blackened Canteen WWII relic helps heal U.S.-Japanese rifts. For 26 years a U.S canteen blackened and battered in the midair collision of two B-29 bombers in Japan during World War II — a symbol of the horror of war — has been an instrument of peace and reconciliation at Pearl Harbor. Star-Advertiser.

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ACLU files class action lawsuit against DOE, OIA for Title IX non-compliance. Campbell High is at the center of this lawsuit, but the accusations extend to public schools across the state, and go back decades. KITV.

'Unequal treatment’: Athletes file class action over lack of girls’ facilities, opportunities at Hawaii schools. Athletes at Campbell High have filed a federal class action lawsuit over a lack of girls' sports facilities and opportunities at Hawaii high schools. Hawaii News Now.

A federal class action lawsuit against the Hawaii Department of Education was filed Thursday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii over gender inequities for female athletes at the state’s most populous high school. Civil Beat.

Class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of Campbell High's female student-athletes. On Thursday, the ACLU of Hawaii filed a class-action lawsuit in federal court on behalf of two female student-athletes attending James Campbell High School. KHON2.

With a lei-bedecked statue of Congresswoman Patsy Mink as a backdrop, civil rights attorneys announced Thursday they had filed a lawsuit seeking to end discrimination against female athletes in Hawaii’s public schools. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmaker says Legislature to blame for Title IX lawsuit. Changing in teachers closets, in plain view on the practice field, even at a nearby Burger King bathroom -  the ACLU of Hawaii says that's what female athletes at Campbell High School deal with daily. KHON2.

A major opportunity has opened in Hawaii for those hoping to work in the airline industry. The University of Hawaii is partnering with an aviation academy to create courses which will foster pilots, mechanics, flight attendants, and aeronautical engineers. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Things Are Actually Looking Up At Honolulu Airport. Modernization of Daniel K. Inouye International has been years in coming. But real change is in the air. Civil Beat.

Patsy T. Mink Monument Dedicated On Her Birthday. A statue of Hawaii’s former Congresswoman Patsy Mink was dedicated today. Hawaii Public Radio.

Statue honors legacy of former Congresswoman in place close to her heart. The legacy of former U.S. Rep. Patsy Mink was honored Thursday at the Hawaii State Library, where a life-size bronze sculpture was dedicated. KHON2.

Kakaako condo Aeo ready for owners. By late January all 466 owners in the sold-out building are scheduled to take possession of their new homes, which cost $1 million on average. Star-Advertiser.

State removes eyesore from Maunalua Bay shoreline. Contractors moved concrete one shovel at a time Thursday in order to successfully remove a large eyesore that’s been parked on the Maunalua Bay shoreline. Hawaii News Now.

Kamehameha Schools and the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands have executed the ground lease on three acres of land for the trust’s $10.9 million learning center on the Waianae Coast. Pacific Business News.

Honolulu home prices rise 3% but sales drop by double digits. Home prices on Oahu rose by about 3 percent last month, compared to November of last year, but the number of single-family homes and condominiums sold fell by more than 10 percent, according to statistics from the Honolulu Board of Realtors. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Hundreds turn out for reopening of Isaac Hale Beach Park at Pohoiki. The reopening of Isaac Hale Beach Park attracted hundreds of Puna residents eager to witness the creative side of the recent Kilauea eruption and return to a refuge many thought would be consumed by lava. Tribune-Herald.

Today, the gate at Isaac Hale Beach Park opened to the public for the first time since the eruption of Kilauea Volcano forced its closure. Big Island Video News.

Puna Park Cut Off By Lava Reopens, Attracting Hundreds. “They needed something to feel good about,” said Mayor Harry Kim of the locals who showed up in Pohoiki on Thursday. Civil Beat.

Months after lava swallowed Pohoiki, hundreds flock to reopening of Isaac Hale Beach Park. ‘It’s still beautiful... but it’s changed. It will be forever changed.’ Hawaii News Now.

Hundreds celebrate reopening of Hawaii island beach nearly lost to lava. KHON2.

Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim today signed a Sixth Supplementary Emergency Proclamation, lifting a set of lava-related prohibitions but keeping others in place for the time being. Big Island Video News.

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Proposed water bottling plant raises concerns. The Hawaii County Windward Planning Commission delayed the approval of a permit for a water bottling facility near Wailoa River State Recreation Area after a contentious meeting Thursday. Tribune-Herald.

The Department of Environmental Management has announced a public meeting to discuss the Lono Kona sewer project, which will connect 145 assessment units on 110 lots, the equivalent of 268 single-family homes, to sewer lines mauka of the Kuakini Highway McDonald’s in an area more popularly known as Hamburger Hill. West Hawaii Today.

Kona Community Hospital shuts down due to scabies outbreak. Hospital leadership made the decision to “temporarily close all patient units” as an “aggressive preventive measure to protect patients and staff from potential exposure to infection.” Star-Advertiser.

Maui

End of sugar farming may impact aquifer water yields. As planners chart out Maui island’s water use over the next 20 years, uncertainty hovers over the region with the largest population but the least groundwater resources. Maui News.

Two-story clubhouse plan for Waiehu to be unveiled. Public can see conceptual vision for municipal course at two events. Maui News.

Kauai

Gary Hooser an ‘Unsung Hero’. From grassroots organizing to state senator and majority leader, Gary Hooser has been advocating for Hawaii’s environment and people for years. Garden Island.

Portions of Waha Road in Kalaheo will be closed for reconstruction work, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., from today to Dec. 10 or 11, weather pending. Garden Island.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Hawaii second-worst for driving, sprinklers for Honolulu high-rises, University of Hawaii faculty holds anti-Thirty Meter Telescope press conference, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

file photo
Honolulu traffic file photo
No surprises here: In a new study, Hawaii is ranked the second-worst state for drivers. The study, conducted by Bankrate, gave Hawaii some of the worst numbers in several areas related to safety, cost and driving quality. It analyzed commute time information, traffic fatality data, road condition reports and gas prices — all of which Hawaii drivers deal with on a daily basis. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii placed 2nd for worst drivers across the nation, according to study. Personal finance site Bankrate.com has ranked the best and worst states for drivers related to cost, safety, and driving quality. KITV.

Commuting Oahu: ‘It Takes Your Time And It Gives You Back Stress’ Some of us live closer to our jobs than ever. But it’s taking longer to get there. And the cost in lost time, dollars and home life is heavy. Civil Beat.

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 Former carpenters’ union official is Green’s chief of staff. Lt. Gov. Josh Green appointed a former carpenters’ union official to be his chief of staff months after a super PAC funded by the union spent more than $1 million supporting his candidacy in the Democratic Party primary. Associated Press.

Bravery of USS Vestal crew saved many lives. History focuses most on the cataclysmic explosion on the USS Arizona and sunken battleship memorial — still a tomb for over 900 crew — in remembering the Dec. 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian monk seal has eel removed from its nose. On Monday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Program posted to its Facebook page a photo of a juvenile monk seal with what appears to be a spotted eel in its nose. Star-Advertiser.

Wisdom, a Laysan albatross reputed to be the world’s oldest known bird in the wild, has returned to Midway Atoll and laid another egg, federal wildlife officials confirmed earlier this week. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Sprinkler extension denied. At its last meeting of 2018, the Honolulu City Council failed to override Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s veto of a bill easing condo fire safety rules, but gave the final green light for Waikiki’s first, large-scale rental complex in decades and moved forward with proposals regulating vacation rentals and “monster” houses. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu City Council failed to override the Mayor’s Veto of an important fire sprinkler bill. Bill 72, allows high-rise condominiums without fire sprinkler systems an additional 2 years to complete a life system evaluation and retrofit. Hawaii Public Radio.

High rise fire inspections to remain at three years vs. five, post-Marco Polo fire. The Honolulu City Council voted five-to-three on Bill 72. This keeps high rise building fire inspections to three years instead of five. KITV.

City Ethics Commission Is Investigating Far Fewer Cases Than 2 Years Ago. Director Jan Yamane, who took over from Chuck Totto, is emphasizing training over investigation in an effort to change the culture. Civil Beat.

Legal community urges action against Honolulu prosecutors mixed up in federal criminal probe. There is growing pressure on the city Prosecutor’s Office after a Hawaii News Now investigation revealed First Deputy Chasid Sapolu was sent a subject letter from the Department of Justice. Hawaii News Now.

Islandwide Homeless Restrictions Approved — But Are They Legal? A recent federal court ruling has some cities pulling back their bans on homeless people camping in public places. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

With the legal fight against the Thirty Meter Telescope appeared to be over, University of Hawaii faculty, staff and students took their case to the public Wednesday in a press conference on the UH Manoa campus. Star-Advertiser.

Energy experts discuss grid resiliency, redesign against external threats. The components of the concept were part of a panel discussion Wednesday at a conference on energy storage trends and opportunities convened by the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority and held at the Sheraton Kona at Keauhou Bay. West Hawaii Today.

As checkpoints come down inside Leilani Estates, Hawaii Island residents face uncertainty for future. KHON2.

Puna’s New Councilmember Ashley Kierkiewicz Looks Ahead. Big Island Video News.

Paradise Helicopters expands Big Island service. Kona-based Paradise Helicopters is expanding its service to the Waimea-Kohala Airport on the Big Island with the launch of a new tour. Pacific Business News.

Home sales drop on Hawaii's Big Island, prices flat. The median price of a single-family home on the Big Island in November was $358,000, which was a decline of 3.57 percent from $371,250 during the same month last year. Pacific Business News.

Maui

Upcountry skate park just needs a fence. While not popular, county says it’s needed for safety. The Pukalani community will get its gift of a skate park probably early next year, and it will come with what some may call extra wrapping — a fence. Maui News.

Tourism on Maui appears to have weathered storms. October visitor arrivals, spending up, HTA data show. Tourism officials appeared to downplay the impacts of storms Lane and Olivia that arrived weeks apart in August and September following the release of October tourism data last week. Maui News.

Kauai

A bill that proposed to reform the county’s affordable housing policy did not pass a second hearing at the Kauai County Council meeting last week, losing in a 6-1 vote. Garden Island.

Former PMRF worker accused of wire fraud. The U.S. Pacific Fleet on Oahu is still putting together the pieces of how a woman allegedly stole nearly $356,000 from the Navy’s Pacific Missile Range Facility. Garden Island.

Kauai condo prices jump 35% in November. The median price of a condo on Kauai last month was $550,000, an increase of 35.47 percent from $406,000 in November 2017. Pacific Business News.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Kilauea marks 3-month inactivity milestone, Green adds campaign supporters to staff, UH develops Zika vaccine, 25 years for Schofield Barracks soldier who tried to abet IS, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy USGS
Fissure 22 lava cone Nov. 6 PC:USGS
As Of Today, Kilauea Eruption Could Be Considered Over. Kilauea Volcano is still not erupting. Wednesday, December 5, marks three months with no eruptive activity at the surface; September 4 was the last time active lava was observed along the lower East Rift Zone. Big Island Video News.

Three months have passed since lava was seen inside fissure 8 in Leilani Estates. By one standard, that could mean the eruption on Kilauea’s lower East Rift Zone is pau. Tribune-Herald.

George H.W. Bush National Day of Mourning: What's open and closed. KHON2.

No USS Arizona survivors to attend this year's Pearl Harbor commemoration. For the first time this Friday, Hawaii marks the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor without any survivors from the USS Arizona. KITV.

A federal judge sentenced Schofield Barracks soldier Ikaika Erik Kang to 25 years in prison Tuesday for trying to help the Islamic State group, or IS. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Soldier Who Tried To Help Terrorists Gets 25-Year Sentence. Ikaika Kang provided classified military documents and a drone to undercover agents posing as members of Islamic State. Associated Press.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green has hired Brooke Wilson, who served as political and education director for the Hawaii Regional Council of Carpenters, as his chief of staff, as well as experts from the health care industry to staff his office on the fifth floor of the state Capitol. Star-Advertiser.

Tulsi Gabbard’s Race To The Top. The congresswoman got a taste of what life might be like on the campaign trail in 2020 with visits to New Hampshire and Vermont. But can she win? Civil Beat.

University of Hawaii medical school researchers have developed a potential vaccine for the Zika virus two years after the infection linked to birth defects caused a global public health emergency. Star-Advertiser.

Researchers at the University of Hawaii medical school have successfully developed a vaccine candidate for the Zika virus, showing that it is effective in protecting both mice and monkeys from the infection. Maui Now.

Researchers at the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine said they successfully developed a vaccine candidate for the Zika virus. Pacific Business News.

Scientists Seek Public Assistance To Track Invasive Mudweed. Turns out this new invasive species may be difficult to remove from our reefs. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu

A key Honolulu City Council committee Tuesday gave Mayor Kirk Caldwell a preliminary green light to enforce the Sidewalk Obstruction and No Lodging ordinances that were signed into law nearly two months ago. Star-Advertiser.

Enforcing sidewalk bans could happen soon, but worry over lack of community services still exist. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell sees potential problems with a measure that would move the homeless. KITV.

Six-Figure Deal To Cover UH Rail Costs ‘Slipped Through The Cracks’. HART says it fixed its process so the glitch won’t reoccur, but it’s unclear if the agency missed other contracts. Civil Beat.

HPD overstating success in rape cases, report claims. An investigation by national news outlets has raised concerns about whether the Honolulu Police Department is massaging its rape statistics to make it look like it’s solving more crimes than it actually is. Star-Advertiser.

As part of widening corruption probe, DOJ sends subject letter to second-in-command at prosecutor’s office. The city prosecutor’s first deputy has received a subject letter from the U.S. Department of Justice, in a sign that a federal investigation into Honolulu’s ex-police chief is now zeroing in on players at the city Prosecutor’s Office. Hawaii News Now.

Military training will lead to an uptick in noisy skies. Starting Wednesday, the Hawaii Air National Guard will be hosting another Sentry Aloha Exercise. It will involve more than 800 military personnel and 30 aircraft from nine states. Hawaii News Now.

Lawmakers weigh in on Oahu's fireworks ban. We talked to two city council members about revisiting Oahu's fireworks ban. KHON2.

Hale Kipa Breaks Ground for $11M Ewa Headquarters and Campus. Hale Kipa, a state-wide nonprofit youth services organization, achieved a decade-long goal today. Hawaii Public Radio.

Goodwill to expand size and services in Makiki. For 18 years Goodwill Hawaii has made makeshift use of a former automobile sales and service center in Makiki. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Process underway to find a new moniker for fissure 8. The ongoing question of what to call fissure 8 could be resolved next year as the Hawaii Board of Geographic Names determines its naming process. Tribune-Herald.

This Showcase Rec Center Was Another Victim Of Eruptions. Park facilities require longterm repairs after they housed Kilauea lava evacuees for more than four months. Civil Beat.

UH researchers confirm beetle’s role in spread of rapid ohia death. Scientists suspected that its spread has been aided by beetles burrowing into infected trees, and a new paper from the University of Hawaii’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources confirms that to be the case. Tribune-Herald.

The search is on for a new executive director for the Hawaii Island Humane Society following Donna Whitaker’s departure from the position last month. West Hawaii Today.

Big Isle solar permits issued fell 45% in November. The number of photovoltaic permits issued in Hawaii County plunged 45 percent in November but is still up for the year. Star-Advertiser.

Solar PV permits down 45% on Hawaii's Big Island in November. Hawaii's Big Island has suffered its third consecutive month with a year-over-year decline in the number of solar photovoltaic permits. Pacific Business News.

Maui

No more Styrofoam: Maui County’s ban leaves restaurants searching for alternatives. Restaurants are gearing up for Maui County’s ban on polystyrene food and beverage containers that starts on December 31. Hawaii News Now.

Meetings to discuss noncommercial marine fishing registry, permit or licensing systems for Hawaii will be held in the county beginning today on Maui. The Non-Commercial Marine Fishing Registry, Permit, and License Study Group has been meeting for the last two years to look into the feasibility of creating a registry, permit or license system for noncommercial marine fishing in Hawaii. Maui News.

The Pools of Oheo in the Kipahulu District of Haleakala National Park will reopen on Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 following a nearly two year closure. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kuhio Highway to close at bridge. The Hawaii Department of Transportation plans to close Kuhio Highway at the Waioli Stream Bridge between Anae Road and Kumu Road in Hanalei from 11 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, to 5:30 a.m., Wednesday, Dec. 12. Garden Island.

Sunday marked the first night of Hanukkah, and Kauai’s Jewish community celebrated by lighting a tiki torch menorah on the lawn of the Historic County Building. Garden Island.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Gov. Ige and Lt. Gov. Green inaugurated to four-year term: media coverage, speech text, videos, GOP response, more. Plus inaugurations on neighbor islands, more top news

courtesy Governor's Office
Swearing in of Gov. David Ige PC: Governor's Office
Gov. David Ige stresses ‘moving forward together’ at second inauguration. Gov. David Ige stressed the need for unity after being sworn in for his second term as governor in the rotunda of the Hawaii State Capitol on Monday, and suggested that the state is at a crossroads as leaders look to build a more diversified and sustainable economy driven by technology. Star-Advertiser.

Ige Begins Second Term With Call To ‘Move Forward, Together’. The governor said he is “eager and excited about the prospect of tackling all that is before us” after being sworn in for another four years. Civil Beat.

Gov. David Ige, Lt. Gov. Josh Green sworn into office. Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov. Josh Green were sworn in Monday at a ceremony that took place in the State Capitol Rotunda. KHON2.

Governor David Ige was sworn in for a second term by Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald.  In his address, the governor repeated the inauguration theme of moving forward together.  Hawaii Public Radio.

Ige sworn in for a second term. Gov. David Ige took the oath of office Monday for a second term as Hawaii’s governor, saying this generation’s legacy will rest on how well it prepares children for a technology-driven future. Associated Press.

Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov. Josh Green were sworn-in today, Monday, Dec. 3, 2018 at the State Capitol Rotunda. During his inaugural address, Gov. Ige focused on three specific areas–Education, Housing and Sustainability–saying, “I believe our legacy will rest on how well we meet the challenges of the 21st century, and how well we begin to transform our economy.” Maui Now.

In laying out his plan for the next 4 years, Ige condemns Trump administration for ‘troubling’ direction. Hawaii News Now.

Gov. David Ige's inauguration speech full text.

Gov. David Ige's inauguration speech video.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green speech video.

Hawaii Republican Party inauguration speech response. Hawaii Free Press.

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Path to the presidency may be tough: political analyst weighs in on Gabbard's chances. Hawaii U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard said she's seriously considering making a run for president. KITV.

Hawaii Does Fine Raking In Federal Dollars Without Earmarks. There’s talk in Congress of resurrecting the system for bringing home the bacon. But lawmakers say it’s questionable how much that would help the state. Civil Beat.

Hawaii soldier to be sentenced for trying to provide material support to ISIS. Associated Press.

International Students Continue To Fuel State's Economy.  A new study recently released by the Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism shows International students help to contribute close to a billion dollars to our state coffers. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Tuna Fishermen Want Higher Quotas. Stable ahi prices are expected during the holidays, but environmental groups are concerned about the longterm health of fish stocks. Civil Beat.

Hawaii bankruptcy filings for 2018 jump to 3-year high. Hawaii bankruptcies surged last month amid a slowing state economy and are now guaranteed to finish the year with the worst outcome since at least 2016. Star-Advertiser.

Electric vehicle push to provide Hawaii with over $700M in economic benefits, HECO predicts. Hawaiian Electric estimates that transforming the Islands' transportation sector from fossil fuels toward electricity could result in economic benefits of more than $700 million over the next 27 years. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

7 vacation rental bills before the Council. Seven bills that try to both regulate and legitimize Oahu’s short-term vacation rentals get their first airing before the Honolulu City Council on Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

HPD Program For Domestic Violence Victims Stalls. Two years after advocates convinced Honolulu police officers to implement a threat assessment form for victims, its use has dropped by half. Civil Beat.

10-cannon salute at governor’s inauguration sent students at Honolulu school fleeing from classrooms. Hawaii News Now.

The city is a step closer to initiating a condemnation action to acquire an easement for a long-­discussed public beach right of way to the ocean ­ in East Honolulu’s ritzy Portlock Road area. Star-Advertiser.

It’s ‘twilight’ for Pearl Harbor survivors. It’s extra noteworthy that Everett Hyland, a Dec. 7, 1941, attack survivor who was on the USS Pennsylvania, will return the salute of a passing Navy warship at Friday’s anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Star-Advertiser.

Foodland Farms to open as part of new Kahala retail center. The project called Kuono Marketplace at Kahala will provide about 50,000 square feet of commercial space for about 20 tenants in a contiguous complex fronted by about 150 parking stalls and a gas station on the corner of Waialae Avenue and Hunakai Street where a Shell station once stood. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

A new County Council was seated Monday, with its chairman pledging renewed cooperation between county and state governments and a session without distractions from the serious issues of the day. West Hawaii Today.

Aaron Chung, the newly elected chair of the Hawaii County Council, said he plans to make recovery from the 2018 Kilauea eruption a top priority in the coming year. Big Island Video News.

Big Isle dispensary rebrands with new name. Lau Ola LLC, one of two licensed medical marijuana companies on the island, said Monday that it will operate under a new name: Big Island Grown (B.I.G.) Dispensaries. Star-Advertiser.

Lau Ola LLC, one of the two permitted medical cannabis providers on Hawaii Island, is announcing a company rebrand, changing its name to Big Island Grown Dispensaries. Big Island Video News.

Maui

Discussing an audit critical of the county liquor department and commission, Maui County Council members Monday called for increased oversight of the independent entities and expressed dismay at some of their practices. Maui News.

A 2nd Circuit Court judge determined Monday that shoreline hardening plans for the Hololani condominiums should have required an environmental assessment, and that county officials did not take that into account when approving changes to the condos’ plans. Maui News.

Women’s March Founder From Maui Declines Participation in Anniversary Event. Teresa Shook, the Hawaii woman who founded the Women’s March, publicly called for the four leaders of the Women’s March Inc. to step down. Maui Now.

Not much left of Makena hotel. After starting this summer, demolition of the old Makena Beach & Golf Resort, formerly the Maui Prince Hotel, looks to be nearing an end. Maui News.

Kauai

Mayor Derek Kawakami has big plans for his first 100 days in office — among them, a round of internal audits to improve government performance, the creation of a new office to address problems facing the community and improving the government’s approach to customer service. Garden Island.

Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami sworn into office. Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami and members of the 2018-2020 Kauai County Council were sworn into office by Judge Randal G. B. Valenciano at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall on Monday. KHON2.

Council, in 5-2 vote, elects Kaneshiro chair. Arryl Kaneshiro was appointed Kauai County Council Chair, with Ross Kagawa as vice chair at the newly-elected council’s inaugural meeting Monday, despite pleas from some residents in attendance that Councilman Mason Chock be selected for one of those positions. Garden Island.

Inauguration attendees look forward to future. Garden Island.

Woman accused of stealing nearly $365,000 from Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai. Court documents reveal Rowenalynn Yorkman carried out the scheme while working as a travel clerk for the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Barking Sands on Kauai. KHON2.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Feds probe rail, Ige-Green inauguration today, Gabbard stumps in New Hampshire, but coy on presidential plans, preschool kids served Pine-Sol, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Honolulu Auhtority for Rapid Transit
Honolulu rail guide-way detail PC:HART
Federal inquiry linked to rail. Federal investigators are taking an interest in Hono­lulu’s $9 billion rail project, but it is unclear what has attracted their attention. Star-Advertiser.

After winning his re-election bid earlier this month, Gov. David Ige is set to be sworn in for his second term Monday at the rotunda in the state Capitol. Hawaii News Now.

Governor David Ige, Lt. Governor-elect Josh Green to be sworn-in Monday. KHON2.

Ige will start his last four years as governor with a new partner. This year, the governor chose to have his inauguration at the Rotunda at the State Capitol. KITV.

Testing the waters in New Hampshire, Tulsi Gabbard ‘seriously thinking’ about presidential bid. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard made multiple stops this weekend in the state that holds the first primary in the race for the White House — sparking further speculation that she’s considering a run for the Democratic presidential nomination. Star-Advertiser.

Tulsi Gabbard For President? ‘I Am Seriously Considering It’. Speculation has been mounting, but at an appearance in New Hampshire she said she’s thinking of how she can “best be of service to the people of this country.” Civil Beat.

Case wraps up orientation, eyes campaign finance reform. Congressman-Elect Ed Case is a freshman by title. But after serving in more than two terms in the mid-2000s, he’s familiar with the way Washington works, and his fellow freshman members know it. KITV.

Oysters Could Help Clean Hawaii's Polluted Waterways. Some of Hawaii's most polluted waterways may soon get help from an unlikely source: oysters. After a successful test project in Pearl Harbor, the Hawaiian Islands branch of the Waterkeeper Alliance is seeking to expand the use of oyster colonies to clean polluted waters. Hawaii Public Radio.

State Claims ‘Dramatic’ Improvement In Adult Home Care Oversight. But in the face of a harsh audit of the program last week, some lawmakers were skeptical that there has been such a swift turnaround. Civil Beat.

Want To Teach In Hawaii? The Job Often Comes With A Big Pay Cut. Teachers from the mainland get credit for only a few years of seniority, creating another challenge in efforts to address Hawaii’s teacher shortage. Civil Beat.

Oahu

City rolls out new transit card pilot program. The first passengers on Honolulu’s new rail system won’t take that inaugural ride for another two years, but the initial elements of the system like the new HOLO card are coming to life. Hawaii News Now.

East Oahu preschool students mistakenly served Pine-Sol. Students were mistakenly served Pine-Sol instead of apple juice, according to a report released by the state Department of Health. It happened Tuesday at Kilohana United Methodist Church Preschool. KHON2.

$800,000 Honolulu home median considered modest. When Honolulu’s median sale price for single-family homes punched through the $800,000 ceiling in August, the big round number stunned many prospective homebuyers. Star-Advertiser.

Native Hawaiian graduation rate triples at University of Hawaii at Manoa. Native Hawaiian and Filipino students are graduating on time at record rates from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, with Hawaiians tripling their level since 2010, according to the latest data. Star-Advertiser.

A volunteer group has obtained city approval to build a 1-acre public playground at Ala Moana Regional Park that includes miniature zip lines, slides, swings and a splash pad. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu City Councilwoman Ann Kobayashi wants the city to look into placing a motor sports racetrack on a portion of a historic field that the Navy is planning to transfer to the city. Star-Advertiser.

Don’t Expect To See Those Green E-Scooters Again Anytime Soon. Lime’s electric scooter fleet was pulled from Honolulu streets earlier this year. Hawaii’s vehicle code needs changes for them to return. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Hawaii Island is gaining people, but they’re not coming from the rest of the state. In fact, between 2012 and 2016, the Big Island lost an estimated 2,362 people annually to the other three counties in Hawaii, while adding just 1,654, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau. West Hawaii Today.

UH-Hilo to offer career path for airline pilots and drone operators. A new bachelor’s degree in aeronautical sciences at the University of Hawaii at Hilo could start training students to become commercial pilots or operators of unmanned aircraft as soon as next year. Star-Advertiser.

About a dozen Puna residents offered their suggestions, as well as complaints, to Hawaii County representatives Thursday evening during the first of what is expected to be several talk-story sessions regarding recovery from the Kilauea eruption. Tribune-Herald.

Parade, lava museum revive hopes for Pahoa’s future. Saturday’s eclectic Pahoa Holiday Parade — the 25th to run down Pahoa Village Road through the heart of the small rural town — carried the hopes of a community still struggling in the aftermath of Kilauea Volcano’s destructive eruption this year. Star-Advertiser.

Big Island: Back in Business. Vivid images of volcanic eruptions captured the world’s attention this year, but frightened off visitors. Hawaii Public Radio.

Aggressive pigs becoming a nuisance at some state parks. A visit to Hawaii Island’s state parks provides a close encounter with nature — sometimes, a bit too close for comfort. Tribune-Herald.

Funds frozen as groups grapple for control of Hawaiian Ranchos Road Maintenance Corporation. West Hawaii Today.

State Investigates Big Island Biofuel Plant For Discharging Wastewater. There is no public health threat from the discharge at the facility, which expects to start generating power by burning wood sometime in December. Civil Beat.

Hu Honua takes exception to Hawaii DOH comments in violation notice. The Hu Honua biomass power plant on Hawaii's Big Island, which is currently under construction, is taking exception to comments made by state Department of Health Director Bruce Anderson in a press release Friday that alleged Hu Honua Bioenergy LLC personnel caused an unauthorized discharge of industrial wastewater on Nov. 9. Pacific Business News.

Maui

New Trial Ordered for Maui Man Arrested During Telescope Protest. The Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals on Thursday vacated an obstruction conviction by a Maui jury of a native Hawaiian who was protesting the construction of the Daniel K Inouye Solar Telescope atop Haleakala in August 2015. Maui Now.

Water ruling shouldn’t affect W. Maui supply. Department says flow is sufficient, working on new supply sources. The county water department said Friday that there should be sufficient flow in the Kanaha Stream — 90 percent of the time — to meet needs of Lahaina customers and to comply with the state water commission’s order last week to restore 550,000 gallons of water per day to the stream. Maui News.

‘We have no choice’. Climate expert: State has to reach for renewable energy goals. Maui News.

Maui scores high marks in visitor satisfaction from nearly all regions. Japanese tourists, though, seem a bit harder to please. Maui News.

Meeting will explore using oysters to improve water quality in harbor. Maui News.

Kauai

The public is invited to attend the inauguration of Mayor-elect Derek Kawakami and the Kauai County Councilmembers-elect, scheduled for today. Garden Island.

In one of the last remaining duties of being the mayor, Bernard Carvalho Jr. presented $500,000 of state grants Friday to six nonprofits for work they are doing for flood recovery on the North Shore. Garden Island.

KEMA unveils new 18-screen video wall in Emergency Operations Center. Garden Island.

The Kauai County Housing Agency held a blessing for the Lima Ola affordable housing project in Eleele last Monday. The county has also secured a total of $19 million of funding for the project. Garden Island.

Friday, November 30, 2018

New tourism chief named, data breach at Marriott, Supreme Court won't reconsider Thirty Meter Telescope ruling, Hawaiian Airlines opening mainland tech office, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaiian Airlines at Honolulu airport ©2018 All Hawaii News
Isle tourism still pacing ahead of 2017. The Hawaii Tourism Authority reported Thursday that total arrivals in October rose 4.4 percent year-over-year to 770,359. Star-Advertiser.

Former hotel housekeeper and executive is tapped to lead HTA. A former hotel housekeeper, who went on to become a top Marriott hotel executive, will be the first hotelier ever to lead the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Star-Advertiser.

Chris Tatum named new CEO of Hawaii Tourism Authority. Tatum, the area general manager at Marriott International in Hawaii, was elected by the tourism agency’s 12-member board on Thursday. Pacific Business News.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority’s board of directors on Thursday unanimously confirmed the appointment of longtime tourism executive Chris Tatum as its new president and CEO. Garden Island.

Massive, extended data breach at Marriott’s Starwood hotels. The information of as many as 500 million guests at Starwood hotels has been compromised and Marriott said that it’s discovered that unauthorized access to data within its Starwood network has been taking place since 2014. Associated Press.

Marriott announced Friday a hack of its Starwood guest reservation database system. The hack potentially affects the information of up to 500 million guests. Reuters.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority has allocated nearly $3.6 million in funding to support 130 programs in 2019 that it says “perpetuate Hawaiian culture, protect natural resources, and showcase community events.” Star-Advertiser.

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Ige Spent $3.2 Million On Re-Election Campaign, New Reports Show. The incumbent governor, who won in a landslide, spent spent six times as much as his Republican challenger. Civil Beat.

Ige to be sworn in to second term next week. After winning his re-election bid earlier this month, Gov. David Ige is set to be sworn in for his second term next week at the rotunda in the state Capitol. Hawaii News Now.

Governor seeking team players. Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov.-Elect Josh Green are recruiting qualified and dedicated individuals who are interested in working for state government in various positions across Hawaii. Garden Island.

Lieutenant Governor-Elect Plans Homelessness Strategy. After fourteen years in the State Legislature, Dr. Josh Green is going to be sworn in as Lieutenant Governor next Monday. Although many consider the Lieutenant Governor’s job to be minimal — change of name, IDs and marriage licenses and such — Green has big plans. Hawaii Public Radio.

In ‘game-changer,’ Hawaii given approval to use Medicaid dollars to help chronically homeless. Hawaii is one of the first states in the country given the go-ahead to use federal Medicaid dollars — typically reserved for health care costs — to help homeless people move into housing. Hawaii News Now.

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Gabbard’s New Hampshire trip marks possible presidential run. Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is scheduled to speak Sunday to progressive Democrats in New Hampshire as part of a series of discussions with prospective Democratic presidential candidates, a further indication that she is indeed looking at running for the Oval Office in 2020. Star-Advertiser.

A presidential run for U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard? Her travel schedule hints at the possibility. KITV.

2018 Central Pacific hurricane season wraps up today. The 2018 Central Pacific hurricane season officially ends today. However, a developing El Nino could potentially fuel some offseason action. West Hawaii Today.

A destructive 2018 Hawaii hurricane season comes to a quiet end. Hawaii News Now.

The 2018 Central Pacific hurricane season set a record. Forecasters call the year "unprecedented" with six tropical cyclones. KITV.

Marijuana might reverse heart failure, University of Hawaii study finds. Alexander Stokes, assistant professor in cell and molecular biology at the UH John A. Burns School of Medicine, said the potential medical benefits of cannabis to treat heart disease are promising. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Airlines to open IT center in Arizona. Hawaiian Airlines said Thursday it will open a technology center in the Phoenix area in the first quarter. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Honolulu City Council: "No" to Franken Poles. The Honolulu City Council is putting the brakes on a proposal to improve cellphone coverage and generate millions in non-taxpayer revenue. Hawaii Public Radio.

Honolulu Council to take up emergency measures for building permits. A resolution urging Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s administration to implement emergency procedures to help with building permit delays passed the Honolulu City Council’s Zoning and Housing Committee, a day after the mayor announced initiatives to speed up the permit process. Pacific Business News.

A Plan To Keep Homeless Offenders Out Of Jail In Honolulu. Police and the prosecuting attorney’s office are still deciding what nonviolent crimes qualify the homeless to participate in a diversion program. Civil Beat.

After years of legal wrangling, judge dismisses Kealohas' civil suit against city Ethics Commission. A judge has dismissed a years-long case against the city Ethics Commissions, brought by ex-Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his wife, a former deputy prosecutor. Hawaii News Now.

Aloha Stadium upgrade plan moves forward. The process of determining a successor to Aloha Stadium will enter its most significant phase in more than five years next month, when work on a stadium master plan and environmental impact statement is scheduled to commence. Star-Advertiser.

Palehua Windfarm Announced for Leeward Oahu. Over Thanksgiving week Hawaiian Electric announced it reached an agreement to purchase power from Eurus Energy America. The company will build and operate a windfarm on Palehua Ridge above the existing fossil fuel powerplant. Hawaii Public Radio.

Huge swell saves homes threatened by erosion, changes beaches. The biggest swell of the season has come and gone with another one on the way next week. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Hawaii Supreme Court Will Not Reconsider TMT Ruling. With the exception of changes to some footnotes in the original order, the Hawaii Supreme Court on Thursday denied a motion for reconsideration filed by the petitioners in the case of the Thirty Meter Telescope planned for Mauna Kea. Big Island Video News.

Find Hawaii Supreme Court opinions on the Thirty Meter Telescope issue here and here and here.

Tourism sluggish in Volcano. The reopening of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has brought visitors back to nearby Volcano, but perhaps not as quickly as some expected. Tribune-Herald.

Lava checkpoints nixed: Last two manned barriers will be removed next week. Hawaii County will remove its remaining checkpoints on roads in lower Puna next week, but some restrictions may still apply for nonresidents entering Leilani Estates. Tribune-Herald.

Private company plans lava viewing area in Puna. The public could soon have authorized — and unauthorized — access to see firsthand the aftermath of Kilauea Volcano’s Puna eruption. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Board on Geographic Names received three name proposals to rename fissure 8. The board plans on giving a status report in the next seven to 10 days. KITV.

Hawaii island mayor honored for keeping community safe. He was named a Homeland Heroes Mission Awardee by the Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today for his ongoing efforts during Kilauea's latest eruption. KHON2.

The Mokupapapa Discovery Center was filled with concerned fishermen on Wednesday night, who wanted to know more about a study that looks at possible non-commercial fishing regulations. Big Island Video News.

Marni Herkes dies after long illness. A tireless community volunteer best known for her long service as the chamber’s executive director died recently, leaving behind a legacy of civic-minded engagement. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Audit critical of liquor department and commission. Lack of transparency, ‘arbitrary’ rules among issues raised. Maui News.

The Hawaii Commission on Water Resource Management has adopted instream flow standards for Kahoma and Kanaha streams in West Maui. Maui Now.

Age of utility scale solar has begun on Maui County. Projects in Lahaina, Kihei blessed with larger ones on horizon. Maui News.

Two large scale solar farms were blessed on Maui in separate ceremonies on Wednesday in Lahaina and Kihei. Maui Now.

Workers at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali will be returning to their jobs today after going on strike Oct. 8, according to a union official. Maui News.

Kauai

Kawakami names cabinet. Mayor-elect Derek Kawakami announced plans Thursday to replace a number of county government officials, including Managing Director Wallace Rezentes, who will now serve as deputy director of parks and recreation. Garden Island.

Kauai visitors spending more. Kauai welcomed 103,089 visitors in October, up 2.4 percent from October 2017, according to the Hawaii Tourism Authority’s report released Thursday. Garden Island.

A Kauai elementary school became first DOE school to serve taro. This is part of Aina Pono, the Hawaii State Farm to School Program. KITV.

Organic farm next to Facebook CEO's Kauai property on the market for $23M. A Kauai farm that grows organic ginger and turmeric and is adjacent to land that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently acquired to add to his Hawaii holdings is on the market for sale for $22.95 million. Pacific Business News.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard tests presidential waters, state sued over autistic student services, Honolulu Styrofoam food container ban proposed, Lingle to address Maui crowd, coquis come to Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard ©2018 All Hawaii News
Is This The Beginning Of Tulsi Gabbard’s Bid For President? The congresswoman will travel from a high-profile event for Bernie Sanders progressives in Vermont to New Hampshire, where she’ll participate in a pre-presidential meet and greet. Civil Beat.

Colleen Hanabusa Is Now The Legislature’s Attorney In Case Against The State. Two nonprofits filed a lawsuit in September to improve government transparency in the lawmaking process. Civil Beat.

State sued over services for autistic students. Lawyers for the Hawaii Disability Rights Center filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court Wednesday against the state Department of Education and Department of Human Services. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Climate Commission Pushes For State Carbon Tax. The group of state and county officials said it’s the most effective method to reduce emissions from cars, trucks and buses. Civil Beat.

Is Ocean Warming Causing A Decline In Hawaii Whale Sightings? Researchers and wildlife officials meet in Honolulu to discuss the “unprecedented” decrease in sightings throughout the islands. Associated Press.

The 2018 Central Pacific hurricane season will end Friday much like it started — with a couple of months of smooth sailing and no tropical cyclones on the horizon. It was the middle part that got rather dicey. Star-Advertiser.

Strike-ending deal means 5 hotels down, about 15 more to go. As striking hotel employees begin returning to work today at five Marriott-managed hotels, the focus shifts to about 15 other major Hawaii hotels where union members soon will be pushing for better wages and benefits. Star-Advertiser.

The largest container ship ever built in the U.S. sailed into Honolulu Harbor on Wednesday. Matson says the “Daniel K. Inouye,” named for the late U.S. senator, is the most efficient and fastest ship in its fleet. Hawaii News Now.

Largest container ship built in US arrives in Hawaii. Named in honor of Hawaii's late senior U.S. senator, the Daniel K. Inouye is the first of four new ships being built for Matson that will be introduced in Hawaii over the next two years. KHON2.

‘Inouye’ arrives in Honolulu as newest, biggest, fastest Matson ship. The largest containership ever built in the United States cruised into Honolulu Harbor Wednesday after three years of construction and an initial voyage from Philadelphia to California via the Panama Canal earlier this month. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

New proposal introduced to ban styrofoam containers. The proposed bill would ban restaurants from using polystyrene foam or styrofoam containers. KHON2.

Measure to speed building permit approval becomes law. A bill aimed at speeding up the processing of building permits will become law despite Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s lingering concerns about it. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Caldwell Unveils Plan to Issue Residential Permits in 60 Days. The Honolulu City Council passed Bill 64 two weeks ago to speed up the permitting process for residential homes. Today, the Mayor announced his own plan. Hawaii Public Radio.

Caldwell allows Honolulu building permit bill to become law, unveils new plans to speed permit process. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell on Wednesday said he will allow a bill requiring building permits for one- and two-family homes to be issued within 60 days to become law without his signature, and announced seven initiatives to speed the building permit process, including one requiring all third-party-reviewed permits to be issued without re-checking and another that will close one-stop building permit centers to new applications one day a week. Pacific Business News.

City rolls out new initiatives aimed at speeding up permitting process. After a flurry of complaints, the city has kicked off some new initiatives to speed up the permitting process. Hawaii News Now.

New law reduces wait time for certain building permits. But there are specific requirements when it comes down to fast-tracking the application process. KITV.

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Abigail Kawananakoa asks court to amend trust, give $40M to wife. Court records show Abigail Kawananakoa has changed her trust to ensure that her wife receives $40 million and all her personal property, including her Chihuahua “Girlie Girl.” Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Princess Amends Trust To Ensure Wife Gets $40 Million. The action by Abigail Kawananakoa’s legal team comes during a court battle over her capacity to make decisions about her fortune. Associated Press.

Amid questions about her health, Heiress Kawananakoa seeks to amend trust to give wife $40M. The battle over Heiress Abigail Kawananakoa’s $215 million fortune is intensifying. Hawaii News Now.

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Privately Funded, ‘Destination’ Playground Proposed For Ala Moana Park. A nonprofit would oversee building the free, fenced-in site featuring zip lines, fountains, a snack concession and a police office. Civil Beat.

Ride Sharee works with City Council to draft rules for dockless bike parking. When you rent a bicycle from Ride Sharee, there isn't a bike rack to return it to. That's because the bikeshare is dockless. KITV.

HFD responding to possible chemical leak at Island Energy Service. Honolulu firefighters are responding to reports of a fire and chemical leak at a refinery on Oahu’s Leeward side. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Commission gives positive recommendation to sewer fee hike bill. The Environmental Management Commission on Wednesday sent the Hawaii County Council a positive recommendation on a measure that would nearly double sewer fees over the next three years. West Hawaii Today.

Commission rules against Waikoloa Highlands developer. The state Land Use Commission Wednesday voted to revert more than 700 acres in South Kohala from rural district to an agricultural land classification after determining that the developer of a planned 398-lot residential subdivision did not substantially get the project off the ground. West Hawaii Today.

SBA Disaster Recovery Center Opens In Hilo. Assistance for Hawaii businesses and residents affected by Hurricane Lane is now available, U.S. Small Business Administration officials say. Big Island Video News.

Waipio Valley residents concerned for safety after permits revoked. Morgan Toledo's family has lived in the heart of Waipio for generations. KITV.

Maui

Former Governor Linda Lingle to Speak at Nisei Veterans Memorial Center. Former Governor Linda Lingle will speak at the Nisei Veterans Memorial Center’s Leadership Series Luncheon on Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. at the Kahili Golf Course Nahele Ballroom. Maui Now.

Planning commission defers action on Paia Inn. Panel reviews permit denial for 9-bedroom vacation rental. Maui News.

A proposed education and outreach center dedicated to Kahoolawe’s history got approval from the Maui Planning Commission on Tuesday. Maui News.

The Maui Energy Conference returns to the Maui Arts Cultural Center March 27-28, 2019 with a new name. Maui Economic Development Board announced today that the conference would be renamed the Hawaii Energy Conference. Maui Now.

Kauai

Coqui have arrived. Since September, six coqui frogs have been captured in Kapahi, rousing the attention of invasive species groups dedicated to keeping them off of Kauai. Garden Island.

Lunch is served, finally. Malama Kauai’s Farm-to-School program just opened its commercial kitchen trailer at the school and Chef Barbara Kaauwai is serving lunch for the school every day. Garden Island.