Friday, October 23, 2009

Moon rocks missing, Furlough Fridays begin, quake rumbles Big Island and other news around the state

A former NASA senior special agent says the state cannot account for five priceless moon rocks that were given as gifts to the people of Hawaii in celebration of mankind's age-old quest to travel to and safely return from the moon.

Public schools are shuttered today throughout the Islands after a federal judge yesterday refused to block the state's decision to furlough teachers for 17 Fridays through the rest of the school year

The state courts system is still deciding when its Hawaii Government Employees Association employees will be furloughed. So, while state courts will be open on the next two Fridays, the state's biggest courthouse will have no parking for the general public.

The state's reinventing-government task force, made up of Hawaii business leaders and lawmakers, met for the first time yesterday to brainstorm ways to keep the budget-strapped Hawaii government running in a sour economy.

Allen Doane is retiring as chief executive officer and chairman of Alexander & Baldwin Inc. at the end of this year amid leadership changes at the only one of Hawaii's original Big Five sugar companies that continues its dominant role.

A magnitude 4.1 earthquake hit about 60 miles offshore of Hilo at 11:13 p.m. Thursday night, according to the U.S. Geological Survey website.

The biggest capital construction project in state history gains steam. The City and County of Honolulu awards the construction of the first phase of the Honolulu rail transit project. And Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann says it will shake up Hawaii's economy.

A county meeting on the voter initiative that made marijuana possession by adults for personal use the lowest law enforcement priority was marked by a series of verbal pot shots.

Sensing sure defeat, minority Hawaii County Council members on Wednesday pulled a tried-and-true parliamentary ploy to keep their transparency bill alive.

Word that West Hawaii may not see its new YMCA facility come to fruition for up to a decade may prompt a re-evaluation by a major donor.

Becoming Miss Kona Coffee is no easy feat.

Disgruntled community members are upset that public access to Larsen’s Beach in Moloa‘a may soon be obstructed by a proposed cattle ranch fenceline 110 feet from the shore.

There are six boxes or bundles of Native Hawaiian remains, iwi kupuna, at the Kaua‘i repository, and members of the Kaua‘i/Ni‘ihau Island Burial Council need to decide how to re-inter them, said a state Department of Land and Natural Resources staff member.