Friday, January 27, 2012

Military beefing up in Hawaii, no drug testing of welfare recipients, three quit charter school board in protest, gambling proposed on Hawaiian lands, Internet tracking bill unpopular, bag fee in the works, land fund headed to Hawaii County ballot, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Pohakuloa Training Area (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
Hawaii's military future could include another Navy cruiser and at least 1,000 more Marines if some forces are removed from Okinawa. Star-Advertiser

Sen. Daniel Inouye said on Thursday that he expects “an increase of military personnel and assets” in the Pacific, including in Hawaii. Inouye’s remarks came after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta outlined his department’s budget plan for the next five years. Civil Beat.

A host of bills before the State Legislature are dedicated to women veterans this year. KHON2.

Once again, Hawaii state and county government agencies spent far more money lobbying in Washington D.C. than private companies did, according to 2011 U.S. Senate lobbyist disclosure reports. Hawaii Reporter.

State Rep. Mele Carroll has reintroduced a bill that would allow gaming on Hawaiian homestead lands to provide a source of funds for the Department of Hawaiian Home Land's developments and programs. Maui News.

Two Maui law makers are introducing separate gaming measures in the state legislature this session. Maui Now.

Spurred by a dramatic rise in computer-related crimes — including possibly affecting one of their own colleagues — lawmakers have introduced more than 30 measures in the Hawaii Legislature concerning cybercrime. Civil Beat.

State lawmakers decided Thursday to leave online piracy legislation to Congress after hearing vehement opposition to a bill that called for keeping records of Hawaii users' Internet activity. Associated Press.

Internet privacy advocates, web entrepreneurs and business owners turned out in droves on Thursday to denounce a bill before the Hawaii Legislature that would require Internet service providers to keep a record of every website visited by subscribers for no less than two years. Civil Beat.

Hawaii won't be drug testing public assistance applicants and recipients any time soon. Associated Press.

State politicians are running some old plays this week in an effort to convince the NFL that the Pro Bowl belongs in Hawaii. Pacific Business News.

The Legislature is considering a statewide measure to have consumers pay for plastic and paper shopping bags. Hawaii Public Radio.

Consumers Could Be Charged for Plastic and Paper Bags. Civil Beat.

"Bag ban" could go state-wide & include paper. Hawaii News Now.

Credit monitoring and fraud restoration services will be provided to about 98,000 University of Hawaii students, alumni, faculty, employees and others potentially affected by five data breaches that occurred from 2009 to 2011, under a settlement reached in a class-action lawsuit. Star-Advertiser.

Federal data show cutting Hawaiian monk seals free from fishing nets, moving vulnerable pups away from preying sharks and other efforts to rescue the animals are significantly helping the endangered species. Associated Press.

Oahu

The city will agree to a new change order worth about $15 million to pay the company holding the contract to build the first segment of the rail line because of delays in the start of construction, according to officials with the Hono­lulu Authority for Rapid Transportation. Star-Advertiser.

Inspectors from the Hawaii Department of Agriculture (HDOA ) have identified a snake killed on Wednesday near Honolulu airport as a bullsnake. Hawaii News Now.

Longtime Hawaii television newsman Jack Kellner died Wednesday night in California. KITV4.

Hawaii

Three longtime members of the Charter School Review Panel — Chairman Carl Takamura, former Chairwoman Ruth Tschumy and Pualani Akaka — resigned Thursday to protest the state Board of Education's reversal of the panel's decisions on converting Laupahoehoe School to a charter school. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii County voters will once again get the opportunity to weigh in on a 2 percent land fund, now that Mayor Billy Kenoi has signed a bill putting it on the ballot. West Hawaii Today.

Big Brother is watching — but he is supposed to be helping. West Hawaii Today.

Some day, a new gym on the Hilo High School campus will give students, athletes and their fans the chance to enjoy games at home. Tribune-Herald.

Oahu-based military units will convoy from Pohakuloa Training Area to Kawaihae Harbor on Saturday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. via Saddle Road, Mamalahoa Highway, Waikoloa Road, Queen Kaahumanu Highway and Akoni Pule corridor. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Staffing levels at Maui's only Veterans Affairs clinic are at 50 percent, resulting in long waits for veterans who need care, officials acknowledged Tuesday. Maui News.

Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa expressed enthusiasm as the state Legislative session gets underway. Maui Now.

Southerly winds are expected to prevail through today, and volcanic haze, or vog, should continue to hang in the air Friday and start to clear up Saturday, National Weather Service forecaster Vic DeJesus said Wednesday. Maui News.

Kauai

In 2011 Kauai’s beaches and surfbreaks were mostly clean, but some were definitely not. Garden Island.

In response to the growing trend of crimes perpetrated against the elderly, Kaua‘i County Prosecuting Attorney Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho will be holding several senior fraud presentations across the island. Garden Island.

The Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement has joined other national community advocates in an amicus (friend of the court) brief to be filed with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Affordable Care Act. Garden Island.

Molokai

Department of Land and Natural Resources is holding a community meeting regarding the security perimeter at the Kauanakakai Wharf to accommodate American Safari Cruises visits to Molokai. Molokai Dispatch.