Monday, October 26, 2009

Federal bailout reaching few, businesses struggle in sour economy, Kilauea grumbling, other top news


Federal contracts pumped $122.4 million into Hawaii's economy while saving or creating 250 jobs as of early October, according to a federal government Web site that tracks stimulus spending.

Demonstrating that a by-now-familiar phenomenon can still dish out surprises, Kilauea Volcano sent lava over an old access road to Kalapana late last week in a smoky show of deja vu.

From the mom-and-pops to the largest employing thousands of workers, Hawaii's seasoned businesses have paved the way during Hawaii's first 50 years as a state. The cultural diversity that has created Hawaii's unique environment has also flavored its business community, creating a strong, varied economic base.

When anchors Lisa Kubota, Steve Uyehara and Grace Lee sign on the morning show today on KGMB9 and KHNL, it will mark a new era in Hawaii broadcasting.

Hawaii's medical marijuana program will be the subject of a public meeting on Tuesday.

Heavy rains over Windward Oahu on Sunday made for treacherous driving conditions, leaving many stuck in the mud.

Hawaii Island's world class observatories celebrated the International Year of Astronomy by opening their Hilo headquarters Saturday for a "Galileo Block Party" that featured free tours, music and science demonstrations.

Agriculture has been one of the linchpins of the Big Island economy.Yet with all the lip service county officials give agriculture and agricultural sustainability, they've been reluctant to put their money where their mouth is.

Mayor Charmaine Tavares will host an informational meeting Tuesday on the impact of planned layoffs in the state Department of Agriculture's Plant Pest Control Branch and of furloughs of agricultural inspectors.

Collectively, the fathers of Pat Pablo, Becky Komaki and Roland Pablo have more than 160 years of service to the Gay & Robinson sugar plantation.