Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Abercrombie job approval slips, tsunami siren failures scrutinized, 1,300 travelers stranded in Hawaii, Big Island weighs in on biofuel electric rate hikes, Bio-Logical Capital also wanted to buy Lanai, more news from all the Hawaiian islands

Gov. Abercrombie and Hawaii teacher of the year Karen Kutsunai, courtesy photo
Gov. Neil Abercrombie's job approval rating has slipped as his administration struggles to find footing after nearly two years in power. Forty-one percent of voters in a new Hawaii Poll approve of Abercrombie's job performance, down from 43 percent in July. Star-Advertiser.

Hirono: Defense cuts would hit every state, including Hawaii. Pacific Business News.

Lingle says Hawaii needs bi-partisan representative. KITV4.

U.S. Senate Candidate Hirono Profiled. Hawaii Public Radio.

Early voting for the November general election is on pace to nearly double the number in the primary. KHON2.

The Hawai‘i State Environmental Council, with the assistance of the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC), has issued a draft of revised rules for the state's environmental review process (Chapter 343, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes). The public is encouraged to view the draft rules and provide input via the comment form at http://oeqc.doh.hawaii.gov/default.aspx. Hawaii Reporter.

More than 1,300 travelers bound for the East Coast remain stranded in Hawaii. Hawaii News Now.

Tourists made it through Saturday's tsunami but got stranded in Hawaii on Monday as flight disruptions from Superstorm Sandy affected travelers. Star-Advertiser.

University of Hawaii officials' standing with the public isn't faring well in the aftermath of the Stevie Wonder concert debacle this summer, the latest Hawaii Poll indicates. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii public high schools with large percentages of military dependents that participated in a new, federally funded program aimed at improving students’ Advanced Placement (AP) scores reported record results in its first year. Civil Beat.

State roundup for October 30. Associated Press.

Oahu

Kirk Caldwell has continued his steady surge in the Honolulu mayor's race, closing to within striking distance of Ben Cayetano just two weeks before Election Day, according to The Civil Beat Poll. Civil Beat.

Kirk Caldwell reported raising $603,000 in the 10 weeks since the primary election, bringing his total for the campaign at about $1.5 million, according to his campaign. Former Gov. Ben Cayetano, Caldwell’s mayoral rival, reported raising $339,000 in the same period, bringing his total for the campaign to $1.3 million. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu mayoral candidate Kirk Caldwell outraised and outspent opponent Ben Cayetano by a 2-1 margin since the primary election and a two pro-Caldwell PACs funded by the Carpenters Union poured more than $2  million into the campaign during the same period, according to state figures. Hawaii Reporter.

Mayoral candidates discuss how they would handle energy policy if they're elected. Civil Beat.

Incumbent Keith Kaneshiro is hauling in more cash and doling it out faster than his opponent in the race to be Honolulu city prosecutor for the next four years, according to campaign spending reports filed Monday. Civil Beat.

Human error. That's the most plausible explanation being given by emergency planners as to why some Oahu neighborhoods never heard a siren blast announcing Saturday's tsunami warning. KITV4.

Siren malfunctions due to push of wrong button. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Civil Air Patrol tsunami warning aircraft paid special attention to Kaa­awa and Kahana Bay late Saturday night because Civil Defense officials had told them the sirens in those areas were malfunctioning. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii
A computer glitch is being blamed for several tsunami warning sirens initially failing to activate Saturday as residents were ordered to evacuate the coast. Tribune-Herald.

Aina Koa Pono’s biodiesel proposal isn’t a good deal for Hawaii County residents, Mayor Billy Kenoi said Monday, hours before the Public Utilities Commission was set to begin its first Big Island hearing on the subject. West Hawaii Today.

No more increases. That seemed to be the main message relayed to members of the state Public Utilities Commission on Monday night by more than 100 Big Isle residents who showed up at a public hearing at the Hilo High cafeteria to weigh in on two separate electricity rate hikes proposed by Hawaii Electric Light Co. Inc. Tribune-Herald.

A year after county officials discovered that more than $100,000 worth of fuel had been illegally siphoned from the Waimea baseyard pumps, allegedly by Department of Environmental Management employees, the suspects remain free and taxpayers have not been reimbursed for the loss. West Hawaii Today.

The Windward Planning Commission is set to vote on approving a senior center in Ocean View, within a State Land Use Agricultural District. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Planned organized Halloween activities that involve closing down Front Street in Lahaina on Wednesday will go on as scheduled with the state Intermediate Court of Appeals denial Monday of a motion by a Kula man to cancel the festivities. Maui News.

Despite Kahului Harbor seeing the largest of Saturday night's tsunami waves to hit Hawaii, Maui County appears to have sustained no major damage to coastal areas. Maui News.

Three-time Maui County Council Upcountry residency seat incumbent Gladys Baisa said voters should easily be able to differentiate her from her general election opponent: She's the one with the diverse list of accomplishments. Maui News.

An estimated 500 people attended a Maui Democratic Party rally at the Maui Tropical Plantation on Saturday afternoon. Maui Now.

A relic of St. Marianne Cope will begin a five-day tour of Maui County Tuesday morning at St. Theresa Church in Kihei and culminate Saturday with a procession down the pali trail to Kalaupapa for events in the village where she served leprosy patients for more than three decades. Maui News.

Kauai

The money approved by the Kaua‘i County Council to be used in private attorney fees in a Kaua‘i Police Commission versus Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. lawsuit now amounts to $55,000, after last week’s approval by the council of an additional $15,000 to the administration. Garden Island.

County Officials report the Koloa Post Office is now fully operable after an SUV crashed through the building Thursday. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i people had two opportunities to visit a relic of St. Marianne Cope Monday. Garden Island.

Lanai

The new head of Bio-Logical Capital’s Hawaii operations confirms that the Colorado-based land investment company had been interested in purchasing the island of Lanai before Larry Ellison bought it. Pacific Business News.