Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Poet laureate praises Hawaii conservation, PUC gets earful on biofuel surcharge, Honolulu spruces up for APEC, DNC blasts Case for leaking poll results, Maui realtors tangle over sign laws, Hawaii County Building goes 100% solar, Abercrombie visits Hilo, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. Neil Abercrombie courtesy photo
Everywhere Gov. Neil Abercrombie went on his whirlwind tour of Hilo on Tuesday, he received warm smiles, rapturous applause and vigorous handshakes. He also got a little taste of Big Isle stink eye from groups angered by the state's handling of the recently aborted contract negotiations with the public school teachers' union. Tribune-Herald.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has criticized former Congressman Ed Case for publicly releasing a private poll that shows U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, a fellow Democrat, trailing former Gov. Linda Lingle in a hypothetical matchup for U.S. Senate. Star-Advertiser.

Sen. Clayton Hee has more money in his political war chest than the mayor of Honolulu and the governor, according to his latest campaign finance report. Civil Beat.

There’s still more than a year before the Aug. 11, 2012, primary election, but politicians are already jockeying for position. Pacific Business News.

The state Senate and state ethics director are in an escalating dispute over whether members of state task forces are restricted from lobbying. Star-Advertiser.

In addition to paying more for their share of health insurance, the rates for public employees will be going up 10 percent. KHON2.

Hawaii is forging ahead with clean energy developments that put the state on the leading edge of the nation’s - and perhaps the world’s - renewable energy efforts, according to Hawaii government officials. Hawaii Reporter.

Hawaii County officials on Tuesday unveiled the local government's newest electric source -- 1,275 photovoltaic panels that will produce up to 250 kilowatts when they're running at full capacity. West Hawaii Today.

The state Public Utilities Commission got an earful Tuesday when it held a public hearing on an application to spread the cost of a proposed Ka'u biofuel refinery to electricity customers on Oahu and the Big Island. West Hawaii Today.

The nation's poet laureate told a meeting of scientists and others involved in protecting Hawaii's natural resources that they're doing work of "desperate importance" as the world's species become extinct at an increasingly rapid rate. Associated Press.

It’s estimated that 80 to 90 percent of our food is imported. This is an alarming rate for our island state because any disruption to food supply lines would leave us with less than a week of food. Hawaii Independent.

The Aloun Farms human trafficking trial is less than two days into testimony and already it looks like the prosecution has dug itself a deep hole. Civil Beat.

Federal designation of new Big Island flood zones could force thousands of landowners to buy flood insurance and meet more-costly construction standards. Tribune-Herald.

Real estate agents on Monday said they understood why the county wanted to keep the public right of way free of signs but questioned why authorities were disposing of "open house" signs that were left up for just a few hours. Maui News.

Forget the red-carpet treatment. A more than $137 million makeover of Oahu's transportation and tourism infrastructure has turned the coming Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting into more of a blacktop affair. Star-Advertiser.

A newly completed study estimates the City could save 10 million dollars in five years by merging the Honolulu Fire Department and the City Department of Emergency Services. Hawaii Public Radio.

Staff from Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge on Kauai's north shore are planning to hold an open house next week to answer questions and take comments on ideas for managing the refuge. Associated Press.

Researcher suggests more specific ocean warnings. Hawaii News Now.

Close to 500 people lined Salt Lake Boulevard to wave signs in support of crime prevention programs.KITV4.

Wilcox Elementary now has a new greenhouse, made possible through a $77,945 Youth Advisory Board grant from State Farm Insurance. Garden Island.

The tiny Kalaupapa post office serves as the lifeline to its residents. However, United States Postal Service (USPS) budget deficits and decreased use of “snail mail” around the county have put that lifeline in jeopardy. Molokai Dispatch.