Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Hawaii 911 operators curt with caller, too old for bikinis, poi pounders protected, Maui bus growing fast, Kauai curbs street sellers, DOE touts gun safety, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii poi pounder (c) 2011 All Hawaii News
Today, few people in Hawaii continue to make poi the traditional way, using board and stone. But with the Legislature's passage of the Senate Bill 101 , better known as the poi bill, what began as one man's art has been transformed into a legal recognition of an ancient cultural tradition. Civil Beat.

Educational programs for Native Hawaiians are to receive more than $41 million in federal funding this fiscal year. Associated Press.

The Hawaii Legislature has appropriated $1.2 million to pay for the creation of a state information technology office tasked with improving public online services, making government more efficient and saving money. Associated Press.

Moody’s May 17, 2011 downgrade of Hawaii’s General Obligation Bond rating will cost taxpayers more money this fall when the state issues between $500 million and $650 million in GO bonds to fund state projects for which taxpayers guarantee the repayment of debt. Hawaii Reporter.

Governor Neil Abercrombie’s action plan to address homelessness is a 90-day push to kick-start the program. Hawaii Public Radio.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s nine-part plan to address homelessness in Hawaii has created quite a stir since he announced it last week. Pacific Business News

The state Legislature took small steps this session to enhance oversight and public disclosure for charter schools, and lawmakers plan to work with the charter community on big-picture changes for the system. Star-Advertiser.

The Department of Education claims that over the last five years it has dramatically decreased the number of students being expelled from school for bringing a gun on campus. Hawaii News Now.

A 14-year-old student at Pearl Highlands Intermediate School told police he found a gun on campus and was showing it to friends when it went off Monday morning. KHON2.

A state judge dismissed all charges Monday against the four remaining Honolulu police officers accused of falsifying reports to qualify for overtime. Star-Advertiser.

For the first time we're hearing the frantic moments as the Waikele bunker fireworks explosion was happening from the only survivor.  Hawaii News Now.

The Maui Bus received national recognition this past week for being among the "fastest growing" public transportation systems in the nation. Maui News.

Kaua‘i County Council member on Wednesday unanimously approved a bill to strengthen a law regulating peddling at county parks and facilities, but they left it up to the Parks and Recreation Department to create the specific rules required to enforce it. Garden Island.

County considers opening Ka'u council office. Tribune-Herald.

Governmental red tape has left yellow caution tape blocking the tsunami-damaged portion of the Alii Drive sidewalk and seawall. West Hawaii Today.

Reports of axis deer on the Big Island have numerous public agencies preparing a formal response and developing a possible course of action to protect valuable forest and agricultural resources. Civil Beat.

A Hawaii seatbelt enforcement campaign has been launched statewide. Associated Press.

How old is too old? A new survey is answering that question when it comes to women wearing bikinis, miniskirts and stilettos. KITV4.