Thursday, July 5, 2012

Hawaii voter registration up, state plans for Medicaid cuts, legislators don't report stock ownership, FBI coming to Hilo, Honolulu pig removal costly, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

2010 voters All Hawaii News file photo
The number of registered voters statewide has increased steadily over two decades to 684,481 people in 2010 — the most recent year for which data are available — from 436,323 people in 1990. But voter turnout for primary elections during those decades fluctuated between a high of 309,700 in 1994 and a low of 246,299 in 2008. Star-Advertiser.

The last day for new voters to register to vote in the Aug. 11 primary election is July 12, the state Office of Elections said. Maui News.

A review of lawmakers' most recent financial disclosures shows that remarkably few report owning stock or mutual funds, similar to last year's finding. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s spending on Medicaid under the federal health-care law will drop by $28 million during the years 2014-19, as federal financing under the law kicks in. Pacific Business News.

The Affordable Care Act is moving forward with some additional certainly after last week’s Supreme Court ruling. As part of ongoing coverage, HPR is speaking with health care providers to find out what’s next in Hawai`i. Hawaii Public Radio.

The Hawaii State Department of Health will receive a $6.8 million federal grant to increase preparedness for public health threats. Pacific Business News.

The Hawaii State Board of Education today unanimously approved an updated Hawaii State Department of Education Strategic Plan that builds on key strengths and reform initiatives to ensure all students graduate ready to succeed in college or careers. Hawaii Independent.

Randy Moore, 73, retired last week after serving the past six years as assistant superintendent for the Office of School Facilities and Support Services. Civil Beat.

Hawaii's Birds Threatened by Invasive Predators, Habitat Loss. Hawaii Reporter.

The Royal New Zealand Navy’s exclusion from docking at Pearl Harbor during this month’s Rim of the Pacific international naval exercises has created a kerfuffle among political commentators in that country. Tribune-Herald.

State roundup for July 5. Associated Press.

Oahu
In the last five years, the city has paid the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services branch $305,000 to trap, shoot and kill 233 feral pigs that root around in the gardens, dropping feces and damaging the tropical and native flora that grow there. Civil Beat.

An engineering firm with the contract to design the first three stations for the city's $5.26 billion rail project has bought a consulting firm that has a key role in overseeing the project. Star-Advertiser.

Kakaako's waterfront will have a new look on Sept. 1 with the opening of a $16 million Mediterranean-style wedding venue marketed to Japanese couples on the site of the former John Dominis restaurant. Star-Advertiser.

With this year's primary election just five weeks away, politicians and their supporters pushed the number of units in this year's Kailua Independence Day Parade to 108, an increase of 20 more than last year. Hawaii News Now.

Romy Cachola's eight years on the Honolulu City Council is coming to a close, and the next generation of leaders is poised to step into the void. Civil Beat.

Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii gathered on Waikiki Beach Wednesday with a 5-foot by 10-foot iMat serving as the perfect platform for their trash-fighting endeavor. KITV4.

The race for Honolulu Prosecutor will go straight to the November general election with just two candidates. KHON2.

Hawaii

The Hawaii County Democratic Party’s annual Independence Day Picnic on Wednesday drew scores of Big Islanders who reveled in the smorgasbord of Democratic candidates vying for county, state and federal offices this fall. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii County Council approved a request for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to set up an office in the Hilo police station. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

South Maui beachgoers would be able to park for longer periods of time at the end of South Kihei Road under a bill advanced Monday by a County Council committee. Maui News.

Maui residents could end up paying as much as $30,000 for a new water meter under one of four "funding philosophies" the county's Department of Water Supply says is needed to handle future growth. Maui News.

The fight over the fate of two malls planned for Kihei in South Maui has turned into a battle of dueling letters, filings with official county and state administrative bodies and organized community protests. Maui Now.

Kauai
As July 1 rolled in, Kauai County’s Fiscal Year 2013 officially started, and with it, the possibility for Kaua‘i’s top police and fire officials to receive almost $7,000 more in annual salaries. Garden Island.

Three Kaua‘i residents whose essays were selected from 15 responders recently won an hour of flight instruction. Garden Island.

Molokai

In an attempt to aid west end Molokai residents paying some of the highest water rates in the nation, Maui County filed an appeal last year in the state Intermediate Court of Appeals against the utilities of Molokai Properties, Ltd. (MPL), better known as Molokai Ranch. That appeal was recently denied, leaving ratepayers struggling under rates that have been called outrageous. Molokai Dispatch.