Monday, March 28, 2011

Hawaii hits budget wall, radiation leaks not threat to seafood, disaster center set in Kona, Maui buildings to reach new heights, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. Neil Abercrombie appealed for fiscal responsibility Sunday in a message sent via email and posted on YouTube. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii is running out of time to find an estimated $232 million needed to balance the budget over the next three months, leading Gov. Neil Abercrombie's administration to consider emptying the state's hurricane relief fund. Associated Press.

Deep state funding reductions to education projected for the next two fiscal years will likely slow ambitious plans to boost student achievement and turn around low-performing schools, educators warn. Star-Advertiser.

Recent labor union settlements negotiated between the state and labor organizations will give thousands of workers at least four days off on a paid basis and bring an end to their furloughs.Hawaii Reporter.

Sen. Ron Kouchi says he is looking for guidance during the next two weeks in making difficult decisions on how to balance the current and future state budgets, citing the impact of the Japanese tsunami and the economic downturn. Garden Island.

Forty-eight other states have approved it in some form, but not Hawaii. Most lawmakers have consistently opposed it -- while admitting it happens regardless. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Lawmakers Push Akaka Bill At State Level. Civil Beat.

Experts say radiation leaks cause no immediate threat to Hawaii's seafood. KHON2.

Hawaii’s “Aloha for Japan” tsunami relief effort announced it has collected more than $1 million in donations through March 25. Pacific Business News

The U.S. Coast Guard has completed a fly-over of the damage one of the world's largest marine reserves sustained in the tsunami. Associated Press.

Hawaii State Civil Defense will set up a disaster assistance and recovery center in Kona to offer help to people affected by the March 11 tsunami. Star-Advertiser.

During a tour Saturday of Kailua-Kona, U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono vowed to help secure federal funds and low-interest loans for those hit by the tsunami. West Hawaii Today.

A bill that would allow certain residential structures to be built higher than the current county code allows has passed first reading by the Maui County Council. Maui News.

The state has acquired 17 acres of land along the Big Island's North Kohala coast in an effort to preserve dozens of significant cultural sites and assist in marine habitat conservation efforts. Associated Press.

Following a near 17-day pause, lava is once again flowing from Kilauea Volcano's east rift zone, according to the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Tribune-Herald.

On Prince Kuhio Day, many mark the 140th birthday of this Hawaiian royalty with a parade in Waikiki, while other remember an Alii by carrying on his legacy. KITV4.

Since January, there have been three fires that targeted boats belonging to North Shore Shark Adventures. Hawaii News Now.

Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) are seeking a settlement to the lawsuit they filed against Maui County in September 2010, after years of delays in receiving a building permit for a veterans center. Molokai Dispatch.

When one lane of the new Wailua Cane Haul Bridge opens for traffic later this month or in early April, it will be the beginning of the expanded traffic flow pattern planned for the Wailua corridor. Garden Island.