Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Honolulu spills sewage despite EPA agreement, smoking ban coming to public housing, Hawaii Senate advances $11B state budget, state misses out on millions in Medicaid funding, Sierra Club reconsiders rail transit, Kauai police chief battle heads to court, Big Island zip line death preventable, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Honolulu's Ala Wai canal (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
More than a year after a major settlement between the Environmental Protection Agency and the city of Honolulu to address the thousands of gallons of raw sewage that flow into Oahu’s waterways annually, the volume of spills has not abated. Civil Beat.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Monday to advance a bill to prohibit smoking in and around Hawaii Public Housing Authority buildings. Star-Advertiser.

A Senate panel approved Monday its version of the $11 billion supplemental budget bill that focuses on education and core services along with key provisions of Gov. Neil Abercrombie's New Day initiative. Star-Advertiser.

Legislature Keeps Dogs in Restaurants Bill Alive. Hawaii Public Radio.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Monday nominated seven Hawaii business leaders to fill seats on the Hawaii Tourism Authority, including two with ties to land use and development. Pacific Business News.

Governor Neil Abercrombie today made more nominations to several boards and commissions including the Hawai'i Tourism Authority and the Land Use Commission. Hawaii Reporter.

Hawaii is among the few states to not take advantage of a federal incentive program estimated to distribute as much as $80 million to Medicaid providers for the establishment of electronic health records. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Doctors Form Aid In Dying Advisory Council. Civil Beat.

Wind energy is at the top of the list of energy sources that Hawaii should be tapping to meet its renewable energy goals, according to a recently released federal study. Civil Beat.

Starting Aug. 1, nearly all ships en route to Hawaii will be required to switch to cleaner burning fuel as part of an treaty known as the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships.That’s expected to raise the price of shipping a 20-foot container to Hawaii by an average of $18. KITV4.

The Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association is screening candidates to replace President and CEO Mufi Hannemann should he leave the job as his campaign for Congress heats up. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

The Sierra Club, Hawaii's largest grassroots environmental organization, is re-considering its position on the city's $5.3 billion rail transit project. Hawaii News Now.

The first of four candidates to be the next chancellor of the University of Hawaii-Manoa arrives today with the firm belief that Manoa needs to retain the chancellor's position to help drive Hawaii's economy. Star-Advertiser.

It's an important week for the future of the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Starting Wednesday, candidates for the position of chancellor will begin visiting the campus. Hawaii News Now.

Hundreds of Kaneohe based Marines and sailors are on their way to Australia. KHON2.

Hawaii

The out-of-state bidder who scooped up all 16 Hamakua land parcels that were put out for leases has withdrawn his option on eight of the smaller parcels, saying he wants to make them available for local farmers. West Hawaii Today.

If work on the second phase of the Queen Kaahumanu Highway widening project had begun when the Department of Transportation initially expected, and had construction taken the two-and-a-half years the DOT estimated at the time, drivers would have four lanes of highway all the way to Kona International Airport by now. West Hawaii Today.

The zip line tower collapse that claimed the life of construction worker Ted Callaway on Sept. 21 was “immediate and catastrophic,” according to a report by an independent engineering firm. And, it appears it may have been preventable. Tribune-Herald.

In an annual competition hosted by the Roasters' Guild of the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA), three coffees from Ka'u were among the top 10 judged, earning them the coveted title Coffee of the Year for 2012. Associated Press.

Maui

The County of Maui is pleased to recognize the Water Resource & Planning Division for being one of the first government agencies to receive the Hawaii Green Business Program Award. KHON2.

With hula, chanting and song, family members and friends paid tribute Sunday to late Native Hawaiian leader and kahu Charles Kauluwehi Maxwell Sr. Maui News.

A dozen dogs died after their kennel in Waikapu was intentionally set on fire Sunday night, fire officials said. Maui News.

Mainland Condo Owner Objects to Vacation Rental Bills. Maui Now.

Kauai
The Kaua‘i County Council today begins a series of daily budgetary review meetings lasting at least until April 19 on the mayor’s proposed $161.21 million operational budget for fiscal year 2013. Garden Island.

State To Pay $210,000 For Fatal Kauai Wreck. Driver was drunk, high and missed a turn, but lack of lighting and an old bridge contributed. Civil Beat.

The Kauai police commission plans to file a complaint in court to ask for judgment on who has the authority to supervise and discipline the police chief. Associated Press.

The controversy over whether the mayor has authority to intervene with any department heads appointed by county commissions was the focus of a public hearing by the Kaua‘i County Charter Review Commission on Monday. Garden Island.