Monday, August 3, 2009

Diamond Head to get makeover, other top news

Planning and design work for a long-awaited, multimillion dollar improvement project for Diamond Head State Monument is finally expected to wrap up this fall, and work could start early next year.

The number of people who have flu-like symptoms is so great, the Hawaii Department of Health has stopped testing for the H1N1 virus.

Education officials have few explanations for what they consider to be a disturbing trend — year after year Hawai'i's high schools struggle to make "adequate yearly progress" under the federal No Child Left Behind law.

The days of discount movie theaters on Oahu are gone, for now.

Proposals for the county's general plan would add thousands of new housing units to West Maui, making it one of the top areas for growth on the island over the next 20 years.

Retrofitting county facilities with photovoltaic systems and composing a monthly “green column” for The Garden Island are just two of the many projects the county is working on to “move forward” with sustainability, Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. said at the most recent Apollo Kaua‘i meeting.

On June 26, 2000, state officials awarded a $1.5 million contract for a system to monitor taxi traffic at Honolulu International Airport. Nine years later, the state has spent $1.3 million and the system is still not finished.

A memo dated July 8 from Police Chief Harry Kubojiri to County Council Chairman J Yoshimoto said that "Counter Cannabis" field operations were flown June 29 in East Hawaii and June 30 in West Hawaii. Voters in November passed a law making adult personal use of marijuana the lowest law enforcement priority, which said the council "shall not support the acceptance of any funds for the marijuana eradication program."

Remote, unimproved and isolated O'ahu beaches have become the newest homeless refuge for some of those forced to vacate Wai'anae Coast park encampments in recent months.

Former Bishop Museum director Don Duckworth was fond of calling Hawaiian Hall a "museum of a museum." When it was constructed during the closing years of the 19th century, it was a grand example of Victorian design, a lofty poem in crafted basalt and carved koa, an intricate jewel case created solely to show off what still could be collected of Hawaiian prehistoric culture.