Friday, February 16, 2018

Kamehameha Schools to pay $80M to settle sex abuse lawsuit, activists delay Coco Palms, Mauna Kea management plan opposed, Steven Tyler addresses Maui drug court, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Kamehameha Schools on parade ©2018 All Hawaii News
Kamehameha Schools will pay out $80 million to victims and their families under a settlement in a sex abuse case that's rocked the prestigious private school. Hawaii News Now.

Kamehameha Schools has agreed to pay $80 million to 32 plaintiffs who were sexually abused by a psychiatrist decades ago while they were students at the private school or were treated by him, according to terms of a tentative agreement reached between the two sides. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers are advancing a bill to explicitly ban “bump stocks” similar to the devices that were used in last year’s massacre of 58 concertgoers in Las Vegas, but that effort is being opposed by dozens of local firearm enthusiasts. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers looking at new ways to ensure campus safety. A proposal moving forward in the Senate would require the Department of Education to make sure each classroom has an interior lock on its door by the beginning of next year, as well as an intercom throughout the campus by the year 2020. KITV.

Lawmaker proposes changes to locks, intercoms, emergency training and drills for schools. A lawmaker wants to put safeguards on campuses so students are less vulnerable should a school shooting ever happen here. KHON2.

A number of proposed bills dealing with cesspools are advancing in the House of Representatives this session. Hawaii Public Radio.

Maui Senator Tries Again To Reform High-Interest Payday Loans. Hawaii currently allows lenders to offer loans with annual interest rates as high as 459 percent. Civil Beat.

A controversial measure to institute across Hawaii a blanket ban on the manufacturing, distribution and use of chlorpyrifos — once the most widely utilized pesticide in the United States — continues to gain traction as it moves through the state House of Representatives. West Hawaii Today.

Organizers hope Obama exhibit grows into something more permanent. An exhibit at Honolulu Hale created by the Obama Hawaiian Africana Museum has glimpses of President Barack Obama's childhood to his days at Punahou School to his first public speech at Sand Island in August 2008. Hawaii News Now.

Hospital emergency rooms are bustling, with one reporting twice as many flu patients as it was seeing at this time last year. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Housing developers and builders will be eligible for property tax exemptions and various fee waivers from the city if they commit to building housing aimed at lower- income families and individuals, under a bill signed into law Thursday by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell. Star-Advertiser.

Low-income rental housing breaks ground. Local developer Stanford Carr held a construction blessing Thursday for the Kakaako project called Hale Kewalo where apartments are projected to rent for as little as $516 a month and serve some households annually earning around or less than $25,110 for a couple or $31,380 for a family of four. Star-Advertiser.

Developer Stanford Carr broke ground Thursday on a new affordable rental project. Hale Kewalo will be built at the corner of Piikoi and Kona streets, where Home Sweet Home used to be. KHON2.

Paramedics are stretched to the limit — and there's no help in sight. Honolulu's plea for a new Emergency Medical Services station is on life support at the state Legislature. Hawaii News Now.

North Shore residents have unleashed a sweeping condemnation of a plan to subdivide Dillingham Ranch for housing while somewhat expanding agriculture on the historic 2,721-acre property in Mokuleia. Star-Advertiser.

A private-public venture between the U.S. Navy and the country’s largest owner of privatized military housing has sued the wife of a retired Kaneohe Marine officer for defamation. Civil Beat.

Attorney: FBI investigation into four Honolulu police officers ‘completely unfair’. KHON2.

75-year-old Sunset Beach palms are latest victims of erosion. The city’s Department of Parks and Recreation Division of Urban Forestry decided to cut down seven of the beachfront date palms Thursday after certified arborists determined the continual undermining of the trees by erosion made them a hazard to the general public and motorists. Star-Advertiser.

The City and County of Honolulu agreed to pay three service members for towing and auctioning off their vehicles while they were deployed. It's part of a settlement with the Department of Justice that cost the city over $100,000 so far. KITV.

Hawaii Island

Hawaiians, astronomers, UH oppose bill to create Maunakea management authority. Tribune-Herald.

Hirano Store celebrates a century of goods, community and flying chili bowls. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The County of Maui Department of Planning will hold an informational meeting on the permitting process and land entitlements on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the West Maui Senior Center in Lahaina. Maui Now.

As state legislators weigh spending $500 million for a new prison, they also could consider funding a less costly treatment program with a 20-year track record of “remarkable” change, state Supreme Court Associate Justice Michael Wilson said Thursday. Maui News.

Although he was introduced as a singer, songwriter and founding member of the legendary rock band Aerosmith, Steven Tyler offered another description when he spoke to Maui Drug Court graduates Thursday. Maui News.

A group of Native Hawaiian protesters and college students seized the American and Hawaiian flags Wednesday morning at the University of Hawaii Maui College campus. Maui News.

Two West Maui properties have taken emergency measures to halt the growing shoreline erosion that threatens their buildings. Associated Press.

Kauai

Activists delay rebirth of Hawaii hotel with Elvis ties. Developers rebuilding a storied, hurricane-ravaged Hawaii hotel with a Hollywood connection were looking forward to the Coco Palms' rebirth when two men showed up last year, claiming to own the property because they descend from King Kaumualii, the last ruler of Kauai. Associated Press.

Over 100 oppose Wainiha bridges project. The final environmental assessment for a project to replace temporary bridges on Kauai’s North Shore has been completed and is available to the public. Garden Island.

Critics are blasting the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for dramatically lowering a fine on agribusiness company Syngenta for violations of pesticide regulations. Associated Press.

Molokai

All Clear: Re-sampling at Ualapue Meets Federal Standards. Maui Now.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Legislators mull money for seniors, Ige pledges support for Kakaako elder housing, Arakawa fined for campaign spending violations, Waianae homeless rally at Capitol, vacation rental bill pulled pending ethics ruling, no background checks for home-school parents, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Kupuna hula ©2018 All Hawaii News
Lawmakers are considering $2 million to $4 million in legislative funding for the Kupuna Caregivers program to provide up to $70 a day in services for seniors in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii bumped to third in annual State of Well-Being Rankings report. Hawaii is no longer the state with the healthiest residents, in terms of mind and body, according to the most recent State of Well-Being Rankings report released by Gallup and health and wellness engagement platform Sharecare on Tuesday. Pacific Business News.

The trustees of the $16.9 billion public workers pension fund have fired their chief investment officer, instructing him on Monday to leave the offices of the Employees’ Retirement System and not return, according to sources familiar with the action. Star-Advertiser.

Tougher penalties sought for patients who assault health care workers. Tribune-Herald.

A bill that would have “established procedures for a parent or legal guardian to obtain authorization to home school a child” in Hawaii was withdrawn today after a massive outpouring in opposition. Big Island Video News.

Senator yanks bill requiring background checks for parents who home-school their children. Hawaii News Now.

Dozens of hospital patients acquitted of violent crimes with no way to track them. KHON2.

A woman carrying $335,000 cash aboard a private jet from Honolulu headed for the Philippines tried to leave the country Tuesday without listing all of the money on her customs declaration, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court. Star-Advertiser.

HEI earnings down in fourth quarter. Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc. topped analysts’ estimates in the fourth quarter despite lower net income and said a record 27 percent of electricity on its utility’s grid was from renewable sources last year. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc. reported net income of $32.4 million, or 30 cents per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to net income of $44.6 million, or 42 cents per diluted share, for the same quarter last year, a decrease of 27.3 percent. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

Waianae homeless camp seeks help from state. Residents of a large homeless encampment near the Waianae Small Boat Harbor say they are not to blame for many of the concerns being cited as reasons to explore shutting down the village on state-owned property. Star-Advertiser.

Waianae Boat Harbor Residents Try To Stave Off A Homeless Sweep. Some of them gathered at the Capitol on Wednesday to respond to growing criticism of the encampment. Civil Beat.

Leaders of a longstanding homeless encampment near the Waianae Boat Harbor used the State Capitol as a backdrop to deliver a message to lawmakers. Hawaii News Now.

Waianae homeless village fights for safe haven at state capitol. KITV.

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Ige Promises To Help Anxious Kakaako Seniors Facing Rent Hikes. The governor says the state will provide monthly subsidies of up to $250, and indicates a willingness to help residents elsewhere. Civil Beat.

Developer to break ground on long-delayed affordable rentals in Honolulu. The developer of Hale Kewalo plans to break ground on the project on Thursday, more than three years after receiving approval from the Hawaii Community Development Authority for the 128-unit affordable rental project near Ala Moana Center in Honolulu. Pacific Business News.

Experts say expect more water quality alerts. KITV.

A bill allowing the city medical examiner to start charging mortuaries daily fees for the storage of bodies won preliminary approval from the City Council Budget Committee on Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

A battle is brewing over a plan to split up an historic Oahu ranch and sell dozens of parcels to new owners who could build homes on land zoned for agriculture. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu City Council Explores Monster Home Regulation. Critics say extra-large structures known as “Monster Homes” are apartment buildings masquerading as single or two family dwellings in residential neighborhoods. Hawaii Public Radio.

A Bill calling for more immediate steps to prevent fuel spills at the Navy’s Red Hill Storage Facility stalled in the House today. Hawaii Public Radio.

A public neighborhood board meeting is scheduled to be held in Makiki tonight where members will address the drift racing problem on Tantalus Drive in the aftermath of the January crash that left a triathlete with multiple fractures after a racing car plowed into her. Star-Advertiser.

Following a recent dust-up with the World Surf League over tournament dates on the North Shore, Mayor Kirk Caldwell wants to create an advisory committee to rewrite Parks and Recreation Department surf tournament rules all across Oahu by August and in time for the 2019-2020 season. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has called on the World Surf League to reconsider its threat of removing its events from Hawaii after the city denied its permit request. Pacific Business News.

Wallaby makes a visit to the Halawa Correctional Facility. Wallabies are native to Australia, but have been been spotted in the islands. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

A bill regulating vacation rentals has been pulled from consideration until the Board of Ethics can determine whether North Kona Councilwoman Karen Eoff has a conflict of interest in co-sponsoring it. West Hawaii Today.

Gov. David Ige announced that he has appointed Dennis “Fresh” Onishi to serve as the governor’s representative for East Hawaii. Big Island Now.

The remote and rugged terrain of Hawaii island will once again take up its starring role as the surface of Mars today in an ongoing, NASA-funded study of the human factors that contribute to long-duration space exploration. Star-Advertiser.

The University of Hawaii’s sixth Mars mission simulation will begin today as another crew starts eight months of isolation inside a dome on Mauna Loa. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Campaign Spending Commission on Wednesday voted to fine Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa $1,000 for exceeding donation limits to multiple charities. Hawaii News Now.

The Liquor Control Department has a new deputy director and a new application checklist that reduces the burden on nonprofit organizations seeking special licenses for fundraising events. Maui News.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation is implementing new weight limit restrictions on five Maui bridges. Maui Now.

Maui Water Quality Program Expands to Include 48 Test Sites. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauai police and the Department of Parks and Recreation are asking for help in finding the individuals who vandalized a public restroom in Kealia. Star-Advertiser.

Vandals deface restrooms on Kauai's east side; Tips on suspects wanted. Hawaii News Now.

Molokai
The Maui County Department of Water Supply reported a water quality violation at the Ualapue Shaft in East Molokai. Maui Now.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Audit finds Office of Hawaiian Affairs spent millions inappropriately, Honolulu threatens to cancel $53.6M traffic management contract, Maui won't pay mayor's legal fees, plastic straws, tiny homes, police standards mulled in Legislature, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii police officers ©2018 All Hawaii News
Bill To Regulate Police Officers Clears Another Hurdle. Hawaii is one of the few states without minimum standards for cops, but the Legislature is considering a measure to change that. Civil Beat.

The state agency responsible for improving the well-being of Native Hawaiians spent nearly double the amount on pet projects than on competitive grants, the state auditor said in a report released Tuesday. Associated Press.

Audit finds inappropriate spending of millions by OHA and trustees. During fiscal year 2015 and 2016, OHA spent nearly double as much on discretionary disbursements — $14 million — as it did on planned, budgeted and properly vetted and monitored grants — $7.7 million. Star-Advertiser.

After release of critical audit, OHA leaders admit: 'Change needs to happen'. Hawaii News Now.

State audit claims Office of Hawaiian Affairs misspent millions ‘with little restraint’. KHON2.

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Some hotels ditch plastic straws. Now, lawmakers want to ban their use. Hawaii News Now.

Bills Seek Tiny Homes on Hawaiian Home Lands. Senate Bill 2424 and House Bill 2473 seek to establish a public private partnership to leverage $5 million in state funds to create a $20 million revolving loan fund for the development of affordable tiny homes on Hawaiian Home Lands. Maui Now.

Bill Would Spare Micronesians A Yearly Trip To The DMV. The Department of Transportation opposes the measure, saying it could render all Hawaii driver’s licenses useless for flying. Civil Beat.

A Kansas father and husband who is fighting efforts to deport him to Bangladesh was taken off a plane that was flying him back to his native country and is being held at a detention center in Hawaii, his attorneys said today. Associated Press.

Congressional Budget Deal Likely Means More Federal Money For Hawaii. President Trump proposed massive cutbacks, but the opposite is likely to happen after a bipartisan deal lifted spending caps. Civil Beat.

The number of outpatient flu visits in Hawaii continues to remain higher than the national base line. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii State Board on Geographic Names Mulls Changes. Iao Stream or Wailuku River? Mauna Kea or Maunakea? These are just a couple of the challenges before the Hawaii Board of Geographic Names. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu

The city has issued a notice of default to the contractor of the $53.6 million state-city Joint Traffic Management Center, citing numerous deficiencies on the part of Watts Constructors LLC that could delay the project’s completion. Star-Advertiser.

City threatens to cancel contract for multi-million dollar traffic center if problems linger. Hawaii News Now.

Rail Promised Lots Of Jobs But There’s No Sure Count Of What It’s Delivering. HART doesn’t keep track of the totals, but its point-in-time counts suggest fewer people are employed than had been projected. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Rail Project Pursuing Public-Private Partnerships for City Center Segment. The Honolulu Rail Transit Project is hosting a 2-day forum to attract private development partners. Hawaii Public Radio.

By a 5-4 vote the Honolulu City Council decided to postpone for two weeks a vote on a bill that would temporarily stop the city Department of Planning and Permitting from issuing building permits for larger-­scale houses. Star-Advertiser.

Settlement reached in alleged 2012 police brutality, cover-up case. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu Daniel K. Inouye Airport will get a new $1.1 billion concourse to increase the number of gates, add passenger capacity and provide a new international arrivals area, Gov. David Ige announced today. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige, alongside the Hawaii Department of Transportation and members of the Airlines Committee of Hawaii, announced plans for a new $1.1 billion Diamond Head Concourse at the Honolulu international airport that will be built out over the next 10 years. Pacific Business News.

Leadership in the state House of Representatives tabled a bill Tuesday that would have protected roughly 200 residents of a long-standing homeless encampment near the Waianae Small Boat Harbor from being swept from the state-owned property. Star-Advertiser.

New renderings revealed Tuesday show the vision for the new Blaisdell Center in Honolulu. KITV.

A former employee of Waste Management Inc., operator of the city’s Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill admits to stealing more than $800,000. Star-Advertiser.

Waialua High School’s Glenn Lee, who kicked off Hawaii’s robotics movement, is the only American to reach the top 10 as a finalist out of 30,000 entries in the $1 million Global Teacher Prize competition. Star-Advertiser.

A Waialua teacher inches closer to a global teaching award, and its $1M prize. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

With a do-or-die hearing of a bill raising the general excise tax scheduled for next week, the administration and County Council are holding a bevy of last-minute community meetings to get feedback and explain their budget straits. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim and Finance Director Deanna Sako fielded questions and heard statements Tuesday night from West Hawaii residents sharing their voices on a proposal to raise the county’s general excise tax by one-half percent. West Hawaii Today.

A bill to fund two Big Island homeless villages died in the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee Tuesday after clearing its first two committees. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Mayor’s plea for legal fees in Taylor suit shot down by panel. A Maui County Council committee on Tuesday voted against having the county foot the bill for private attorneys to defend Mayor Alan Arakawa and Maui County in a lawsuit filed by water director David Taylor, who is seeking to get back to work and off paid leave. Maui News.

The state Supreme Court has dismissed a misdemeanor charge against a weekly tabloid publisher who was detained when he used his cellphone to videotape a police traffic enforcement operation six years ago. Maui News.

The Hawaii Supreme Court has dismissed a misdemeanor charge against a weekly tabloid publisher who was detained when he used his cellphone to videotape a police traffic enforcement operation six years ago. Associated Press.

Kauai

The Federal Aviation Administration and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources have initiated an investigation into a report of a drone that struck a tour helicopter on Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

Realtor Neal Norman of Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers has listed a 16,000-square-foot home on 18.25 acres above Secret Beach on Kauai for $35 million. Pacific Business News.

Molokai

The majority of the county offices in the Mitchell Pauole Center in Kaunakakai will be moving to room No. 300 in the Moore Center at 2 Kamoi St. later this week due to a leaky roof. Maui News.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Trump names former Hawaii AG Bennett to Court of Appeals, Syngenta settles with EPA, Mauna Kea telescopes stir hot debate in Legislature, Maui ferry not feasible, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Monsanto
Farming, courtesy Monsanto
Concerned residents from Maui and Kauai are set to testify in support of a pesticide regulation bill at the State Capitol requiring companies to alert the public before chemicals are sprayed. The Senate committees on Agriculture and Environment and Commerce, Consumer Protection and Health are expected to make a decision Wednesday. KITV.

President Donald Trump has nominated former Hawaii Attorney General Mark Bennett to the Hawaii seat of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Star-Advertiser.

This Trump Pick Wins Rare Applause from Hawaii’s Democratic Senators. Mark Bennett, the former state attorney general, has been nominated for the Hawaii seat on U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Civil Beat.

Today President Donald Trump announced his intent to nominate an eleventh wave of judicial nominees including the nomination of former Hawaii Attorney General Mark J. Bennett as a Circuit Judge on the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Maui Now.

Report: Public Is Being Shut Out On Critical State Information. A new study by a public interest law firm says Hawaii is the worst in the nation when it comes to timely decisions on open records and open meetings issues. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s largest public pension fund lost about 6 percent of its value in the recent stock market correction. The Employees' Retirement System Star-Advertiser.

Bill Would Require Insurance Coverage Of Emergency Flights To Mainland. Patients who need to travel quickly for organ transplants can pay from $80,000 to $130,000 for air ambulance service. Civil Beat.

Hawaii lawmakers are pursuing legislation that would update the state’s disaster preparedness protocols after the false ballistic missile alert last month. Tribune-Herald.

DOE could be sued over lack of female locker rooms – a violation of federal law. The ACLU has given DOE a deadline of one month to come up with a plan to provide all student athletes equal access to locker rooms. Hawaii News Now.

University of Hawaii Cancer Center researchers are seeking legislative funding for a three-year study to determine why Hawaii has one of the highest rates of liver cancer in the country. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii regulators approve revised tariffs for Hawaiian Electric rate increase. Pacific Business News.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard and Nina Turner, president of Our Revolution, traveled across Hawaii this past weekend to promote citizen engagement, grassroots organizing, and efforts to reform and strengthen democracy and the Democratic Party. Garden Island.

Oahu


Development Lobbyist Failed To Register With Honolulu Ethics Commission. David Arakawa hadn’t registered to lobby at Honolulu Hale for at least five years. And then a reporter asked him about it. Civil Beat.

Moratorium on ‘monster homes’ faces final vote. A final vote on a bill placing a temporary moratorium on large-scale homes is scheduled for today, and Honolulu City Council members have been getting mounting pressure from both opponents and supporters of the “monster houses” legislation. Star-Advertiser.

Several bills were introduced at this year’s state Legislature to address concerns about large-scale houses. Star-Advertiser.

Bill would prevent sweep of Waianae homeless camp. Star-Advertiser.

Family members of a man who says four officers forced him to lick a urinal allege the extent of the abuse is worse than first reported. Hawaii News Now.

Should buses and other large vehicles be kept out of the freeway’s fast lane? KHON2.

Third Deedy trial pushed back as attorney prepares federal appeal. There's another delay in the latest trial of a State Department special agent who fatally shot a man inside a Waikiki McDonald's in 2011. Hawaii News Now.

Number of Honolulu Zoo exhibits & visitors going up. KITV.

Honolulu has been named one of the healthiest cities in the United States, according to a new report. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Bill would create new authority to run Mauna Kea. Senate Bill 3090, sponsored by state Sen. Kaiali‘i Kahele (D, Hilo) and 16 other lawmakers, would establish the Mauna Kea Management Authority as a way of installing “fresh leadership” and “a new model of governance.” Star-Advertiser.

Heated discussion at the State Capitol Monday, over a bill calling for the removal of the board that manages Mauna Kea. That board is currently run by the University of Hawaii. KITV.

Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim appeared today in Honolulu for the committee hearing on the controversial Senate Bill 3090, which would upend the way Mauna Kea is currently managed. Big Island Video News.

Kahele Grills OMKM Director Nagata Over Bulldozed Ahu. Big Island Video News.

Amid TMT dispute, lawmakers look to establish new body to manage Mauna Kea. Hawaii News Now.

Homeless Villages proposal up against deadline. The program would fund 50 homeless units — 25 at two sites in Kailua-Kona and Hilo, respectively — as well as two homeless assessment centers and supportive services under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s preferred Housing First model. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County and Hawaiian Earth Recycling continue to hammer out the details of a new agreement after Mayor Harry Kim nixed plans to build a composting facility in a quarry near the Hilo landfill. Tribune-Herald.

This Hilo Community Fears Its ‘Toxic’ Neighbors. With a nearby airport, landfill, sewage plant, port and petroleum tanks, Hawaiian Homestead residents in Keaukaha want health concerns addressed. Civil Beat.

Hawaii County’s Mayor has about three weeks to send a budget to the County Council. Since 2000, the budget has increased more than 250 percent. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hilton Waikola Village recently became the first resort on the Big Island to discontinue the use of plastic straws and replace them with a compostable, paper alternative. Pacific Business News.

Maui

A ferry system to relieve Lahaina-bound traffic jams and shuttle sports teams within Maui County isn’t in the cards, at least for now. Maui News.

Greg Kaufman, founder of the 38-year-old Pacific Whale Foundation and a pioneer of whale watching on Maui, died Saturday. Maui News.

Pacific Whale Foundation today confirmed the passing of founder and executive director, Greg Kaufman. Maui Now.

Kauai

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Syngenta Seeds LLC have reached a settlement concerning safety violations affecting field workers on Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

EPA Settles Syngenta Pesticide Claim For Pennies On The Dollar. The GMO company will pay $150,000 instead of the $4.8 million that had been sought for exposing Kauai workers to pesticides. Civil Beat.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency came to an agreement Monday with Syngenta Seeds, LLC, to resolve violations of federal pesticide regulations at its farm in Kekaha. Garden Island.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reached a settlement with Syngenta Seeds to resolve violations of federal pesticide regulations at its farm in Kekaha, Kauai. Pacific Business News.

The Kauai County Council recently voted six to one to adopt the County’s General Plan. Garden Island.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Future of Maunakea telescopes mulled, more shenanigans in Takai campaign account, Ige touts accomplishments, Maui mayor running for council, not lieutenant governor, Honolulu homeless woes, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Telescopes atop Maunakea ©2018 All Hawaii News
Kim finalizing Maunakea committee: Mission statement emphasizes Native Hawaiians’ connection to the mountain, exploration. Tribune-Herald.

The University of Hawaii is restarting its effort to gain a new master lease for Maunakea that would allow observatories to continue beyond 2033. Tribune-Herald.

Senate Bill 3090, establishing the Mauna Kea Management Authority, will be heard on February 12. Big Island Video News.

Greg Chun has been appointed as senior advisor to University of Hawaii President David Lassner and UH Hilo Chancellor Marcia Sakai in overseeing the fulfillment of the responsibilities of the entire UH System on Maunakea. Hawaii 24/7.

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The presumably dormant re-election campaign for the late U.S. Rep. Mark Takai has paid out close to $5,000 over the past year to purchase data from a Washington, D.C.-based campaign software vendor that tracks voter information. Star-Advertiser.

Five candidates for lieutenant governor who took part in an early forum at Democratic Party of Hawaii headquarters Saturday vowed to make the job more meaningful for the people of the state. Star-Advertiser.

Candidates for Lieutenant Governor face off in public forum. KITV.

Ige opens campaign offices. Supporters often praise Gov. David Ige, 60, for his soft-spoken, humble leadership style. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. Ige uses launch of campaign headquarters to highlight success of term. Hawaii News Now.

Political candidates react to #MeToo sexual harassment issues in Hawaii. KITV.

Another Delay Sought For Surprise Care Home Inspections. Advocates for the elderly say unannounced inspections are long overdue but state officials foresee problems. Civil Beat.

Proposal to reduce frequency of safety checks works its way through Legislature. KHON2.

It might be game over for certain video games in Hawaii after state lawmakers introduced legislation to limit the implementation of electronic gambling systems within the popular pastime. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii’s Resistance To Trump Enters Cyberspace. A bill to encourage net neutrality envisions the possibility of a taxpayer-owned internet service provider. Civil Beat.

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Hawaii’s visitor industry, caught flat-footed in the aftermath of the false missile alert on Jan. 13, is partnering with the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency to prepare for future situations that could impact visitors. Star-Advertiser.

Nearly a month after a Hawaii Emergency Management Agency employee sent out an alert that a ballistic missile was headed to Hawaii, the agency is still trying to correct the record about what really plunged the isles into 38 minutes of needless panic and fear. Star-Advertiser.

One thing that was clear following the Jan. 13 missile scare in Hawaii is that the state does not have enough hospital capacity to handle a nuclear attack, which could involve mass casualties. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaiian Electric Cos. are asking the state Public Utilities Commission for approval to seek new renewable projects for Oahu, Maui and Hawaii island. Star-Advertiser.

Modernizing Hawaii’s Electric Grid For Less Than $1 A Month. Hawaiian Electric Co. needs to upgrade its distribution system to accommodate mushrooming rooftop solar. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Growing Waianae homeless camp at center of dispute at harbor. State and city lawmakers once looked at one of Oahu’s biggest homeless encampments — Puuhonua O Waianae next door to the Waianae Small Boat Harbor — as a potential model for what government-sanctioned homeless “safe zones” could look like across the islands. Star-Advertiser.

State Department of Land and Natural Resources officials believe the state-owned land beneath the Puuhonua O Waianae homeless encampment contains ancient burial sites, pre- and post-contact rock walls that have been destroyed, and a rare “Waianae lineage” of half-inch-long shrimp living in an underground cave system. Star-Advertiser.

City officials have received complaints that homeless people from a large encampment are dumping human waste into Pokai Bay, among other issues. Associated Press.

There are strict rules regulating daily life inside Puuhonua O Waianae — and those who repeatedly violate them are kicked out. Star-Advertiser.

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Cries over ‘poor door’ ignore worse segregation in affordable housing. Star-Advertiser.

Affordable housing: Like all Hawaii real estate, it’s gotten more expensive. It’s also getting incredibly smaller. Star-Advertiser.

Woman receives $72 ticket after honking her horn at a police vehicle. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

North Kona Councilwoman Karen Eoff, the primary sponsor of a bill limiting vacation rentals on the island, has come under fire for her ownership of a vacation rental condo in Kailua-Kona. West Hawaii Today.

Picking fruit on some West Hawaii farms is more than just precarious. As soon as the trees start shaking, farmers and field workers are as likely to get an armful of little fire ants as a handful of coffee berries. West Hawaii Today.

Kona coffee farmers want label law expanded. Star-Advertiser.

Funding for Big Island Veterans Treatment Court is making headway in the state Legislature. West Hawaii Today.

The opening of the Big Island’s first medical marijuana dispensary has been delayed. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa has submitted a candidate organizational report to the state Campaign Spending Commission showing his intention to run for the County Council’s Kahului residency seat. Maui News.

Maui County mayoral candidates file campaign spending reports. Guzman has the most cash on hand, with Victorino and Cochran next in line. Maui News.

Essential air service contract to expire. Anxiety in Kalaupapa rises as feds take new round of bids, including one with no subsidy. Maui News.

Haleakala National Park will hold a public meeting on Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, to outline a proposed fee increase for the tri-park annual pass. Maui Now.

Maui’s only neurosurgeon, Dr. Thomas Rogers, has been unavailable for the past few months because of a health-related issue, forcing all patients needing examination or surgery to fly to Oahu for treatment, Maui Memorial Medical Center officials said. Maui News.

Kauai

Kani Wildlife Control offers solutions for eradicating unwanted wildlife. Garden Island.

Bikes on Rice begins monthly rides Tuesday around Lihue. Garden Island.

Molokai

A tangle of fishing nets the size of a large SUV washed ashore on the Northeast side of Molokai in Halawa Valley. KHON2.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Tourism outlook sunny, legislative committees advance pesticide bills, emergency shelters, vacation rentals, monster homes, 'survival sex' for young Honolulu homeless, plus Maui politics, Coco Palms lawsuit, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Waikiki beach ©2018 All Hawaii News
Hawaii visitor arrivals and spending are expected to grow over the next four years. Speakers at the Pacific Asia Travel Association’s annual outlook and economic forecast forum tried to evaluate how much of a boon for Hawaii the latest forecast from the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism would be. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism said in a new report Hawaii’s overall economic condition in 2018 will be better than previously projected, as a result of the new tax reform bill. Pacific Business News.

Visitor accommodation units statewide increased to 80,336 units (+1.6%) year-over-year, the largest total ever recorded for the State of Hawaii, according to the 2017 Visitor Plant Inventory released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Maui Now.

Bills Introduced to Crack Down on Vacation Rentals, Monster Homes. Maui Now.

All new state buildings would have to be designed and built with shelter space capable of withstanding catastrophic disasters under a proposal making its way through the Legislature. Star-Advertiser.

House Emergency Preparedness Task Force Bill Advances. Hawaii Public Radio.

In the hours before the state's infamous missile alert mistake, a documentary crew from NBC News was getting an exclusive tour of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, gathering material for a future story that was meant to focus on communications in the aftermath of an actual attack. Hawaii News Now.

Four bills are moving ahead in the state legislature, and lawmakers believe that a lack of action on the federal level will increase the likelihood that the bills will pass. The bills would regulate the use of some heavily used pesticides, including a popular herbicide called Roundup.  Hawaii News Now.

House Committee Advances Ban On Chlorpyrifos. Big Island Video News.

The House committees on Agriculture and Energy & Environmental Protection passed a complete ban on the pesticide chlorpyrifos during a hearing at the State Capitol on Thursday. Big Island Now.

A statewide ban on chlorpyrifos passed through two Hawaii House committees Thursday, along with measures for stricter restrictions on glyphosate herbicides and public notification requirements for pesticide application. Garden Island.

Modernizing Hawaii’s Electric Grid For Less Than $1 A Month. Hawaiian Electric Co. needs to upgrade its distribution system to accommodate mushrooming rooftop solar. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Electric reports 1 percentage point increase in renewable energy in 2017. Hawaiian Electric Cos., the state's largest utility company, said on Thursday it was able to increase its renewable portfolio standard to 27 percent during the past year. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Schools Can’t Seem To Give Breakfast Away. Nearly all of Hawaii’s public schools participate in the federal School Breakfast Program, but only 43 percent of low-income students who qualify for free or reduced-price school lunches also take advantage of subsidized school breakfast. Civil Beat.

Another government shutdown — even a short one — has particularly bad timing for the Hawaii National Guard, which has its once-a-month drills this weekend. More than 4,500 Hawaii Army and Air Guard soldiers were expected to train Saturday and Sunday. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Young homeless on Oahu are forced into “survival sex”. Homeless youth on Oahu tend to have been abused by their parents, became homeless at the age of 14, on average, and generally live a dangerous and disturbing existence where most tried to kill themselves while others were forced to perform “survival sex,” according to the first study of its kind in four decades. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has a lucrative second job at Territorial Savings Bank, and that's raised concerns with members of the state Legislature. Now, legislators are considering a proposal that would prevent acting governors and mayors from having second jobs. Hawaii News Now.

Spill sends 10,000 gallons of sewage into Waianae drainage ditch. The Hawaii Department of Health is urging the public to stay away from a sewage-contaminated drainage ditch in a residential area near Waianae Mall. Hawaii News Now.

City reverses decision to reject gift aimed at supporting young athletes. KHON2.

A woman who stole more than $3.8 million from the company that publishes Honolulu Magazine through a scheme the judge called “intricate” and that the prosecutor said was “exquisitely executed” was sentenced in federal court Thursday to four years in prison. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

The Nature Conservancy has transferred ownership of 222 acres of land to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Tribune-Herald.

Lifeguard liability bills treading water. West Hawaii Today.

A state House committee voted Thursday to advance a bill to establish lifeguards at Kua Bay. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii Island Rep. Richard Creagan and the Hawaii County Council don’t think the Hawaii Department of Health is as serious as it should be about rat lungworm disease. West Hawaii Today.

After two meetings left local business owners with more questions than answers about the proposed surf school regulations, the county has postponed a looming deadline to bid on doing business at Kahaluu Bay. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii Army National Guard is replacing its decades-old vehicle and equipment maintenance shop in Hilo. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Was Maui Official Ousted For Skipping Mayor’s Campaign Event? The director of Maui’s Department of Water Supply is suing his boss after being placed on leave. Civil Beat.

New rental car tax proposed to help fund Lahaina, Paia bypasses. $4.50 per car, per day fee would help build state projects stalled in county. Maui News.

Ongoing discord among Maui County Council members has inspired the launching of campaigns for two candidates: former mayoral candidate and Council Member Alice Lee and Claire Kamalu Carroll, the 48-year-old daughter of Council Member Bob Carroll, who’ll retire this year. Maui News.

Maui resident and community organizer Tiare Lawrence is running for the State House representing Maui. KITV.

Two men who were arrested for allegedly harassing a monk seal in Lahaina could have felony charges dismissed if they make donations to a federal agency responsible for managing ocean resources. Maui News.

Businesses who use the EKO Compost facility that do not have a commercial account are being reminded by Department of Environmental Management officials that they are now required to set up an account and pay green waste tipping fees at $46 per/ton. Maui Now.

Kauai

Coco Palms Developer Fights Back With Its Own Native Hawaiian Research. A Hawaiian consultant disputes the claims of the occupiers of a planned resort site on Kauai. Civil Beat.

Milo Spindt, born in Lawai and now a Kalaheo resident, has pulled papers and is running for the Kauai County Council. Garden Island.

Kapaa grocery store Cost-U-Less is closing after a quarter-century of doing business.  Garden Island.

Phyllis Ann De Graff Kunimura died Dec. 7. She was known as the “First Lady of Kauai” during her husband Tony Kunimura’s tenure as mayor. Star-Advertiser.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Sanctuary bill advances in Hawaii Legislature, medical marijuana for tourists, $15 minimum wage mulled, Chinatown cancels Chinese New Year fest, corrections officers call in sick to watch Super Bowl, police union strikes back at new Honolulu chief, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii road ©2018 All Hawaii News
Hawaii still ranks at the bottom when it comes to road conditions given the amount of money the state pours into them. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers advance ‘sanctuary’ bill akin to California. A bill to prohibit Hawaii law enforcement agencies from honoring most federal immigration holds or sharing certain types of information with immigration authorities has won preliminary approval from state Senate and House committees. Star-Advertiser.

A number of bills addressing homelessness are being considered by the Hawaii Legislature. A bill to establish safe zones for homeless campers, complete with hygiene facilities and social services, does not have the support of the administration. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii May Allow Tourists To Buy Medical Marijuana. Lawmakers also may add vaporizers, more potent products and edibles to dispensaries’ product repertoire. Civil Beat.

Should "Home Inspectors" in Hawaii be licensed or regulated by the state? The idea is being talked about in the inspection industry and at the State Capital. KITV.

A Hawaii state representative has proposed a law that he says would help reduce the islands’ overwhelming number of discarded vehicles. Associated Press.

Measures intended to boost the state’s economy by increasing the minimum wage to $15 per hour over the next two years and to create a family leave plan to help family caregivers were advanced on Tuesday by the Senate Committee on Labor. Maui Now.

Ige taps former union executive to head Hawaii's labor department. Hawaii Gov. David Ige on Wednesday appointed Leonard Hoshijo to head the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. Pacific Business News.

The state is seeking to hire out-of-state contractors to help clear a backlog of health inspections of dialysis centers and other medical facilities. Star-Advertiser.

Nearly 30 percent of Hawaii’s prison guards called in sick on Super Bowl Sunday, state officials said Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

One third of corrections officers assigned to work on Super Bowl Sunday called in sick. Hawaii News Now.

OHA Demands Financial Details From Its Own Companies. Organizations created by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs will have to provide documents for an internal audit. Civil Beat.

Legislature Keeps Written Testimony Under Wraps Til The Last Minute. The common practice of not releasing testimony to the public until an hour before a hearing has one Republican lawmaker pushing for change. Civil Beat.

Hundreds send in ideas to improve missile alert system. Star-Advertiser.

Why We Didn’t Name Hawaii’s ‘Button Pusher’. Numerous media outlets agreed to publish interviews with the man who sent out the false alert without saying who he was. Civil Beat.

PUC approves HECO demand response programs, allowing the utility to control customers' equipment. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Ranks No.4 for Highest Density of Millionaires. Hawaii  previously held the number one ranking in 2010.  In 2017, Hawaiʻi ranked #4 behind #3 Connecticut, #2 New Jersey and #1 Maryland. Maui Now.

Oahu

Hawaii Police Union Strikes Back At Chief Ballard Over Reassignments. SHOPO files a complaint alleging the Honolulu police chief made “false and disparaging remarks” about union leaders. Civil Beat.

SHOPO president Tenari Maafala has filed a complaint against Chief Susan Ballard with the Hawaii Labor Relations Board. KHON2.

The state Department of Health issued a high level of bacteria advisory this afternoon for Hanauma Bay, resulting in the closure of the popular snorkeling spot. Star-Advertiser.

The city has closed Hanauma Bay after high bacteria levels were detected Wednesday, and the popular preserve won't reopen until Friday at the earliest. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has rejected a World Surf League request to swap permits for two contests on the North Shore — a decision the organization says could force it to pull its championship tour competitions from Hawaii. Hawaii News Now.

Permit issues could jeopardize high-profile North Shore surf contest. KHON2.

State lawmakers are taking another crack at resolving a flap over two brothers charging for parking along Kakaako streets to which they claim ownership despite decades of public use. Star-Advertiser.

The Chinatown Merchants Association has abruptly canceled Saturday’s “Night in Chinatown Festival and Parade” to celebrate the Year of the Dog due to lack of funding. Associated Press.

Community members and event organizers are shocked and disappointed that a popular event that attracts thousands to Chinatown to celebrate Chinese New Year was canceled at the last minute due to a lack of vendors. Star-Advertiser.

How a vending machine packed with food and toiletries could help the homeless. Hawaii News Now.

After months-long repair project, new security Kakaako Waterfront is a new park. Hawaii News Now.

The newly minted Honolulu Climate Change Commission met for the first time Wednesday, electing a chairman and vowing to make addressing the impact of sea level rise on Oahu its first order of business. Star-Advertiser.

Kupuna in an affordable housing complex in Kakaako were given quite the scare last week. They received notices that their rent would soon increase – some would even double. Hawaii Public Radio.

The Shack Hawaii Kai announced it will be closing its doors after 26 years in business. KITV.

Hawaii Island


An attempt by the County Council to regulate vacation rentals is drawing a lot of interest — and concern — from part-time residents who rent out their homes and condos to help pay the bills. West Hawaii Today.

A bill that would establish a one-half percent general excise and use tax surcharge on the Big Island was heard by the Hawaii County Council Finance Committee on Feb. 6. Big Island Video News.


The county planning director has recommended that a proposal to build a roughly 5,800-square-foot 18-hole golf putting course next to Kings’ Shops in Waikoloa be approved. West Hawaii Today.

Emotions ran high at a recent meeting about the possible closure of a Big Island charter school. Hawaii News Now.

Maui

Ten drownings in three weeks on Maui have grabbed the attention of Hawaii lawmakers who want the state to step up ocean safety efforts in the isles. Civil Beat.


Anaergia Services plans to meet with Maui EKO Systems once a month about possibly continuing to process the county’s green waste at the Central Maui Landfill, while the energy company moves forward with its proposed renewable energy project at the Wailuku-Kahului Wastewater Reclamation Facility, officials from both companies said. Maui News.

Commercial waste haulers need to pay fees. Maui News.

The County Department of Environmental Management announced that as of Tuesday Feb. 20, 2018, microwave ovens cannot be accepted for recycling at E-Cycling, Maui County’s Electronic Recycling Program. Maui Now.

Home sales on Maui rose in January, led by a 25 percent increase in condominium sales, while prices were mixed, compared to the same month a year ago, according to statistics from the Realtors Association of Maui. Pacific Business News.

Kauai

The public had a lot to say at Wednesday’s Kauai County Council meeting, after a resolution was introduced urging the United States to conduct diplomatic talks with North Korea with the goal of signing a peace treaty. Garden Island.

Kauai Humane Society hasn’t found a permanent leader for the facility, three months after the former executive director handed in his resignation. Garden Island.

Lanai

A community meeting to hear public comments on the proposed design guidelines and standards for the Lanai City Country Town Business District will be held Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, at the Lanai Senior Center at 5 p.m. Maui Now.

Molokai

Maui Electric Co. has inked an agreement to purchase power from Maui County’s first grid-scale solar and battery energy storage system on Molokai that could lower electric bills, the utility announced Tuesday. Maui News.