Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Protecting coral reefs, Hawaiian homelands at issue

Wrecking coral will cost you in Hawaii.

For the past two years, the Army has reviewed more than 2 million documents under a congressional mandate to pinpoint and determine the effects of dumping of chemical and conventional weapons into the ocean -- which was banned in 1972.

After a shark sighting at a popular Oahu surf break, Chopper 8 captures dramatic video of a large shark swimming alongside surfers and then launching a full speed attack on a school of fish.

More than 2,700 Native Hawaiians who allege the state has unfairly delayed leasing land to them will get a hearing in court today, nearly 10 years after filing their lawsuit.

Maui County Council members went a step further Monday in an effort to help Native Hawaiians hold on to kuleana lands passed down through generations from the 1850s.

With no easy options left to close a $786 million budget deficit, Gov. Linda Lingle and state lawmakers are being tempted to use the $185 million in the state's hurricane relief fund to help balance the budget.

Gov. Linda Lingle is asking the state's Department of Human Services to cut $42 million from its budget over the next two years.


In a recent meeting of the state's Council on Revenues where members were tasked with estimating total state personal income, members asked how significant their estimate would be and the impact it would have in calculating the state's general fund expenditure ceiling.

South Kona Councilwoman Brenda Ford wants Hawaii County parks to go to the dogs.