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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hawaii Gov. Abercrombie job approval up, IBEW lawsuit airs internal union workings, early voting begins, Pearl Harbor looks good to military, Maui mayor visiting Taiwan, Kauai rates landfill sites, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. Neil Abercrombie file photo
Gov. Neil Abercrombie's job approval rating has climbed to 43 percent, up from 39 percent in February. Star-Advertiser.

Walk-in early voting began across the state Monday as election officials warned voters to expect lots of changes because of redistricting. Hawaii News Now.

U.S. Senate candidates Mazie Hirono and Linda Lingle are already focusing on each other, even though each has yet to win her respective primary. Civil Beat.

With just days until Hawaii's August 11 primary, Congresswoman Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, continued to miss voting on key measures so she can fundraise and campaign for the seat left open by the retirement of U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii. Hawaii Reporter.

Murder for hire, nepotism and lavish spending are central plots in a recent whisteblower lawsuit filed against the top administrator of one of Honolulu’s labor unions. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s request for flexibility from some requirements of the No Child Left Behind law would use multiple measures to determine how schools are progressing. Associated Press.

Honolulu-based Matson Inc. said Monday that it has formed a philanthropic foundation that plans to give $1 million per year to nonprofit and community organizations in Hawaii, Guam and the Mainland. Pacific Business News.

A scientist who helped build public interest and research about the preservation of humpback whales has died. Star-Advertiser.

State roundup for July 31. Associated Press.

Oahu

A new study on U.S. military forces in the Pacific recommends placing another three-ship amphibious ready group in the region — possibly in Hawaii — in addition to the 2,700 extra Marines already moving here. Star-Advertiser.

An innovative hydrogen production and vehicle fueling station jointly developed by the military and the state of Hawaii over the past six years is ready for prime time. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board will vet a controversial development proposal on Tuesday night by Kamehameha Schools to build a strip mall on a 4.5 acre property on Kalanianaole Highway, just across the street from popular Maunalua Bay. Hawaii Reporter.

Former state Sen. Ron Menor is the biggest name in a field of four candidates vying for far-flung Hono­lulu City Council District 9, which runs from Mililani Town to Ewa Beach. Star-Advertiser.

The Primary Election is less than 2 weeks away and three Early Voting Sites were opened today on O’ahu. Hawaii Public Radio.

Every student gets an iPad; that's the goal of an Oahu school. KHON2.

The City and County of Honolulu’s Department of Environmental Services has six major sewer projects in August that may impact roadways and traffic on Oahu. KITV4.

Hawaii

The Hawaii County Council is taking on vetoes of geothermal bills on Wednesday. West Hawaii Today.

With no Republican challengers, the Aug. 11 primary election race between current Democratic state Rep. Mark Nakashima and challenger Noralyn Pajimola will dictate who takes the state House District 1 seat to speak for East Hawaii residents along the Hamakua Coast between Hilo and Waipio. Tribune-Herald.

The voting registration problems and a probe into possible voter fraud in Hawaii County have illustrated a potential problem: county voting officials do not have to answer to the state. Hawaii News Now.

Hilo voters ready to cast their ballots, did so Monday. KITV4.

Council Chairman Dominic Yagong is calling for patience as County Elections officials sort out apparent discrepancies in the county voter registration database. KPUA.

Maui

Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa has been selected as part of a small delegation of mayors that is visiting Taiwan to promote economic and cultural exchange with the US. Maui Now.

Restauranteur Bob Longhi died early Monday afternoon at Maui Memorial Medical Center after suffering a heart attack early Friday morning, said his son Peter Longhi. Maui News.

Kauai
County officials announced late Monday afternoon the release of the new siting study report which places Ma‘alo at the top of a list including eight potential sites for the island’s next landfill. Garden Island.

An assistant professor at University of Hawai‘i at Manoa recently told federal lawmakers the steadily increasing surface air temperature in Hawai‘i is causing reduced cloud cover and a 15 percent decline in rainfall, UH reported Friday. Garden Island.




Monday, July 30, 2012

Neighbor Island newspapers endorse Case for U.S. Senate, Honolulu voters oppose rail, Big Island elections office in cross-hairs, Marines won't up training on Molokai, teachers squabble over contract, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2012 All Hawaii News
Ed Case, Audrey Case (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
West Hawaii Today endorses Ed Case for U.S. Senate. West Hawaii Today.

Maui News endorses Ed Case for U.S. Senate. Maui News.
Mazie Hirono

Voters on five islands will be able to cast ballots before the Aug. 11 primary election at walk-in voting sites that open today. Star-Advertiser.

Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann holds a 43 percent-to-33 percent lead over City Councilwoman Tulsi Gabbard in the Demo­cratic primary for the U.S. House 2nd District seat, the latest Hawaii Poll shows. Star-Advertiser.

With less than two weeks before the primary election, the poll results are in for both congressional districts of the U.S. House. Hawaii News Now.

Call them Generation Dan — a crop of leaders that have been waiting in the wings until either Daniel K. Inouye or Daniel Akaka leave office. Civil Beat.

Wednesday is the last day for noncandidate committees and corporations to file their fundraising and expenditure reports covering the first seven months of 2012. Civil Beat.

The chairman of Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s political campaign is running a “public-private partnership” with Abercrombie’s office that is soliciting $1.3 million from health care companies for what the governor calls the “Hawaii Healthcare Transformation Initiative.” Hawaii Reporter.

A Hawaii island kiawe forest, a Wai­ma­nalo golf course and farmland on the Ewa Plain are the first pursuits of a quasi-public state agency created last year to optimize the use of state lands and revenue from them. Star-Advertiser.

The new school year starts on Monday and teachers will be heading back to their classrooms without a new contract. Hawaii News Now.

Chief negotiator Neil Dietz delivered another rejection to Hawaii State Teachers Association President Wil Okabe in a letter Wednesday. Civil Beat.

The state is proposing to overhaul its accountability system for schools, putting less weight on the results of a single annual test and instead using multiple measures — from the year-to-year academic growth of students to graduation rates — to determine how schools are progressing. Star-Advertiser.

State lawmakers gave the Board of Education a direct order last year: Monitor the Hawaii Department of Education for compliance with rules governing bullying and establish reporting requirements. Civil Beat.

A controversial new rule that requires boat operators to complete a safety course to operate power-driven vessels in state waters was approved Friday by the Board of Land and Natural Resources. Maui News.

Groups focused on climate change say the knowledge of ancient cultures and indigenous people needs to be included, to provide the greatest opportunities for adaptation. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu
Despite extensive election-year advertising and campaigning to convince the public of the benefits of the $5.26 billion Hono­lulu rail project, only 44 percent of Oahu residents believe work on it should continue, according to a new Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

The campaign for Honolulu mayor appears to be a race for second place, with former Gov. Ben Cayetano a clear favorite heading into the Aug. 11 primary, according to a new Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

A Windward Oahu primary election race could turn out to be a referendum on the Demo­cratic leadership of the state House. Star-Advertiser.

Huge cranes dominate the skyline of the University of Hawaii at Manoa this summer as the campus undergoes $137.5 million worth of construction and renovation. Star-Advertiser.

Nevada-based Blue Earth Inc. has acquired the rights to a 497-kilowatt solar farm in West Oahu. Pacific Business News.

Honolulu says contractors will perform archaeological studies this week near Pearl Harbor, the airport, and Kakaako.Associated Press.

State and federal officials plan to meet residents to discuss upcoming plans to clean up former sugar plantation soil in what is now a Kauai residential neighborhood. Associated Press.

An underground sewer tunnel the city is proposing to build in Windward Oahu is facing some stiff opposition. KHON2.

Hawaii

Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi has asked the state Attorney General’s Office to help sort out apparent discrepancies in the county voter registration database. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Council Chair Dominic Yagong defended the County Clerk's actions following concerns about apparent discrepancies in voter registration rolls. KITV4.

In this election, Big Island voters will decide which direction the Hawaii County mayor will take over the next four years. Tribune-Herald.

Of the three lawyers running to be county prosecutor, one describes himself as “the law-and-order candidate,” another as “a community-oriented prosecutor,” while the third said he was blessed with “the spiritual gift of discernment.” Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The county Board of Variances & Appeals on Friday dismissed an appeal of Maui County's issuance of grading permits for the planned Maui Outlets and Piilani Promenade shopping complexes in Kihei. Maui News.

Kauai

There were significantly more Japan and Canada visitor arrivals to Kaua‘i this June than last June and they, along with all other visitors, spent considerably more on the island than last June. Garden Island.

The Hawai‘i Department of Transportation has budgeted more than $136 million for Kaua‘i roads. Garden Island.

Molokai

After receiving opposition from residents as well as state and federal agencies, the U.S. Marine Corps says it won’t increase training activity in the Kalaupapa settlement. Molokai Dispatch.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Hawaii's largest newspaper endorses Hirono for U.S. Senate, rail transit defines Honolulu mayoral race, tourism, economy ticking upward, Hawaii County clerk investigates voter fraud, Kauai electric co-op celebrates, Colt Brennan arrested, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Mazie Hirono campaign photo





Former U.S. Rep. Ed Case took an assertive tack Thursday night in the final debate with U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono before the Demo­cratic primary for U.S. Senate, casting Hirono as a fringe liberal who considers the federal budget deficit "an inconvenience." Star-Advertiser.

Ed Case and Mazie Hirono traded jabs and took every opportunity to outline the differences between them in their only major televised debate before the August 11 primary election. Hawaii News Now.

Case Versus Hirono, But Lingle's In the Mix. Civil Beat.

Ed and Audrey Case (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
Ed Case and Mazie Hirono had no one to focus on but each other. KITV4.

Honolulu Star-Advertiser endorses Mazie Hirono for U.S. Senate. Star-Advertiser.

EMILY's List, a political action committee based in Washington, D.C., this week spent $121,600 to air a commercial endorsing 2nd Congressional District candidate Tulsi Gabbard. Civil Beat.

University of Hawaii economists are predicting Hawaii’s economy will grow 2.4 percent next year as more tourists visit the islands and the travelers who come spend more. Associated Press.

State roundup for July 27. Associated Press.

Oahu

Primary voters on Oahu could decide the fate of the city’s $5.26 billion rail project. Star-Advertiser.

Supporters of Ben Cayetano on Thursday launched a round of radio ads aimed at Pacific Resources Partnership and its executive director, John White, defending themselves against the pro-rail group’s ad campaign opposed to the former governor’s mayoral campaign based on killing the city’s rail project. Star-Advertiser.

Rail Makes Caldwell The Man In The Middle. Civil Beat.

Former University of Hawaii quarterback Colt Brennan is facing possible drug and drunken-driving charges following his arrest late Wednesday in Kailua. Star-Advertiser.

Police responded Thursday afternoon, following an outburst by Councilman Tom Berg during a public hearing. KITV4.

Democratic primary voters will have to choose between two longtime state legislators who suddenly find themselves battling one another to represent the new state Senate 11th District seat covering Makiki, Tantalus and Manoa. Star-Advertiser.

It's hard to find a vacant spot on Waikiki Beach or a beachfront hotel with available rooms since June ushered in the best summer season that Hawaii's visitor industry has seen in about five years. Star-Advertiser.

The number of homeless people living on the streets of Honolulu has remained level, while more people are getting help at shelters, according to an annual count released Thursday by the city. Star-Advertiser.

The first Affordable Housing Project in Wai’anae opened a year ago and has been full ever since. Hawaii Public Radio.

An opossum turned up Wednesday in a trap set for feral cats near Sand Island. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii


A possible voter fraud case on the Big Island is the subject of an investigation, a law enforcement source told Hawaii News Now Thursday. Hawaii News Now.

The Hawaii County Elections Division will send out new voter information cards to nearly 175 voters because of a ZIP code error, County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi said Thursday in a news release. Star-Advertiser.

The state’s top election officer has sent a letter to the official in charge of Hawai`i County’s Elections Division saying he is concerned that her recent actions may have shaken the public’s confidence in the upcoming primary election. Big Island Now.

County offices in both Hilo and Kona are now closed to new building permit applications a half-day a week to help Public Works clerks clear up backlogs. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii’s tourism economy is on pace for a record-breaking year in 2012 with double-digit increases in visitor arrivals and expenditures through June. Tribune-Herald.

Residents from Wainaku up through the Hamakua Coast have a few fresh faces to choose from in this year’s Hawaii County Council District 1 contest. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii County has awarded a $6.4 million contract to ABHE and Svodoba Inc. for reinforcing the Reed’s Island bridge. Tribune-Herald.

Governor Neil Abercrombie has released $14 million in airport revenue bonds to finance an incomplete Capital Improvement Project at the Hilo International Airport. KHON2.

Maui

State Rep. Mele Carroll, who represents East Maui, Molokai, Lanai and Kahoolawe, has been flagged for again failing to report campaign contributions and expenses on time. Maui News.

Democratic candidates for the South Maui 11th House District seat expressed opposition Tuesday night to Eclipse Development's work on two mega-malls in Kihei, with one candidate taking some flak for seeking to accommodate anticipated heavy traffic and for not opposing the projects outright. Maui News.

Olive Garden and Trader Joe’s, two of the most talked-about national brands that have yet to enter the Hawaii market, could be among the mix of retailers and restaurants to open at a large retail development under development on Maui. Pacific Business News.

The Maui County Council's General Plan Committee will meet earlier than scheduled to continue deliberating on proposed growth boundaries for West Maui. Maui News.

Kauai

The Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative celebrated its 10th anniversary by outlining its accomplishments during the year and anticipating its coming year, Thursday before about 200 members who attended the annual membership meeting at the Kaua‘i Community College Performing Arts Center. Garden Island.

A Lihu‘e postal worker was arrested Wednesday on a federal complaint related to selling unregistered guns that were shipped through the U.S. Postal Service, a Department of Justice press release states. Garden Island.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Hirono leading Case in poll, Sierra Club fights Hannemann, Chinese tourists to double, Honolulu mayor vetoes beach business ban bill, Hawaii County resending yellow voter cards, Kauai kicking vendors off beach, Hawaiians distrust roll commission, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Ed Case, Mazie Hirono
Poll: U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, lifted by the strong support of core Democratic voters, has a double-digit lead over former U.S. Rep. Ed Case in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate. Star-Advertiser.

The Sierra Club says it will "pour a lot of money" into a targeted mail campaign criticizing congressional candidate Mufi Hannemann's environmental record. KITV4.

Social media are the meat and potatoes of today’s political campaigns. And it's no different here in Hawaii. Civil Beat.

While China is still a small market for Hawaii tourism, the number of Chinese visitors to the Islands is projected to nearly double by 2015. Pacific Business News.

After spending 40 years in the trenches of the sovereignty movement, Native Hawaiian Roll Commissioner Mahealani Wendt says she fully understands why some Hawaiians are suspicious of the panel’s efforts to identify who should be involved in forming a self-governing entity. Honolulu Weekly.

The new agency tasked with developing state lands is hoping to move forward on its first projects — even though it hasn't finalized rules that govern its operations and establish the criteria by which projects are chosen. Civil Beat.

A new office at the state capitol is focused on Hawai`i’s youngest students and getting more keiki into preschool. Hawaii Public Radio.

A state lawmaker plans to introduce legislation to stop high-speed training by police in residential neighborhoods. KHON2.

State roundup for July 26. Associated Press.

Oahu
A beach ban for businesses on beaches on Oahu’s windward coast was vetoed by Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle Wednesday. Civil Beat.

Mayor Peter Carlisle vetoed a bill on Wednesday designed to stop all commercial activity at Kailua Beach Park and clarified that most of the business conducted there is already illegal under a separate measure that became law on July 1. Star-Advertiser.

The City Council Budget Committee on Wednesday approved a resolution asking the city administration to restore recent cuts made to TheBus services. Star-Advertiser.

Just as the University of Hawaii is proposing a new bio-safety lab in Kalaeloa, it's having problems with its existing lab at the John A. Burns School of Medicine in Kakaako. Hawaii News Now.

The city's Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation, which is acquiring private property in the way of the city's 20-mile elevated steel on steel rail system, maintains its officials have treated private property owners along the route with respect and paid them the full value for the land the city has acquired. Hawaii Reporter.

Hawaii

Errors in assigned polling places on voter registration notices have prompted the County Elections Division to resend more than 101,000 of the yellow cards to voters next week. Tribune-Herald.

A trash-hauling study by the county Department of Environmental Management shows it is even less expensive to haul garbage from Hilo to Kona than first thought, and the hauling option is significantly less costly than either a new Hilo landfill or a waste-to-energy incinerator. West Hawaii Today.

A University of Hawaii professor is taking on a high-altitude water study that could open thousands of acres on Mauna Kea for farming and ranching, as well as bring more fresh water to Pohakuloa Training Area and Mauna Kea State Park. West Hawaii Today.

A Maryland-based ocean thermal energy developer is poised to build a test plant at the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii Police Department is about to enter its final phase of efforts to achieve accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. Tribune-Herald.

One of Hawai`i’s most popular eateries will be coming to Hilo next year when Zippy’s Restaurants opens its 26th Hawai`i location at the Prince Kuhio Plaza. KPUA.

Maui

The master-planned Honua'ula project in Wailea received a key approval Tuesday by the Maui Planning Commission that will allow development of the luxury golf community to move forward. Maui News.

Several boating accidents in the past year, including two in which people died, have prompted state officials to propose that boaters be required to take a safety course and that an advisory committee review ocean recreation safety rules in West Maui. Star-Advertiser.

Democratic candidates for the South Maui 11th House District seat expressed mostly opposition Tuesday night to Eclipse Development's work on two mega-malls in Kihei, with one candidate taking some flak for seeking to accommodate anticipated heavy traffic and not opposing the projects outright. Maui News.

Maui County will receive $800,000 in federal funds to build 10 new bus shelters in Wailuku, Kahului and Kihei. Maui News.

Kauai

Kauai County officials on Tuesday and Wednesday told commercial tenants operating on the property immediately behind Black Pot Beach Park in Hanalei to vacate the land by today, as the county would be taking possession of the land. Garden Island.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie has signed a disaster declaration that will allow the state to make emergency repairs to a critical highway on Kauai that was damaged by waves last week. Associated Press.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Federal judge mulls Hawaii gay marriage ban, state doesn't know results of $1B tech credits, Ethics Commission fines 22 for not filing, Honolulu airport in top three for pandemic fears, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright All Hawaii News
Honolulu civil unions protest (c) 2012 All Hawaii News

A federal judge will rule later on Hawaii's ban on same-sex marriage after hearing more than two hours of arguments Tuesday on the legal landscape here and around the country on the controversial topic. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie should remain as a defendant in a lawsuit against the state by two women who want to get married, but he believes a ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, a lawyer representing him said in court Tuesday. Associated Press.

The state auditor says because of a weak law, the state doesn't know the impact of $1 billion spent in tax credits to boost the high-tech industry in Hawaii in areas such as biotechnology, software and alternative energy. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii State Teachers Association President Wil Okabe has accused Gov. Neil Abercrombie of being "infected by the Mainland political strategy of attacking teacher unions" and having better things to spend money on than schools. Civil Beat.

The state Ethics Commission is fining 22 state House and Senate candidates — including several incumbents — $25 each for failing to meet a deadline for filing financial disclosure statements. Hawaii Reporter

The Hawaii state Judicial Council is looking to fill a vacancy on the Hawaii State Ethics Commission created by the departure of Jacqueline Kido. Pacific Business News.

U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii announcement on Tuesday that she received the endorsement of U.S. Rep. Don Young. Hawaii Reporter.

Economic conditions for Hawaii's children have worsened over the past several years, but there have been gains made in education. Associated Press.

State roundup for July 25. Associated Press.

Oahu
Although he's been out of office for a decade, Ben Cayetano is hardly an unknown commodity in Hawaii politics: 28 years in elected office, the last eight as governor, and all three decades of public service as a card-carrying Democrat. Star-Advertiser.

The last time Ben Cayetano was on a ballot was in 1998. He was running for his second term as Hawaii’s governor. Civil Beat.

Less than six months after problems surfaced at the Next Step homeless shelter in Kakaako, residents and some state officials are worried things may be getting worse. Civil Beat.

By early August, drivers will begin steering along reconfigured onramps and offramps on the H-1 freeway between Punahou Street and the Punchbowl area when the state completes a re-striping project that will add a fourth lane in each direction. Star-Advertiser.

Scientists are set to begin testing for geothermal energy potential on Oahu and other Hawaiian islands. Civil Beat.

The Massachucetts Institute of Technology study points to New York, Los Angeles and Honolulu as the three top airports as the most likely places to spread an infectious diseases in the early days of a pandemic. KITV4.

Among the players in the University of Hawaii’s recent fundraising fiasco are: a recently bankrupted local entertainment promoter whose home is now in foreclosure; a Florida firm that only began business in February; and a commercial painting contractor with a history of bad debts. Hawaii Reporter.

The local promoter at the center of the failed UH Stevie Wonder concert -- canceled two weeks ago -- has encountered serious financial problems in recent years. Hawaii News Now.

A Honolulu City Council Committee passed a resolution today urging the State to tighten rules for pig hunting dogs. Hawaii Public Radio.

The city says a Kalihi apartment building has been releasing sewage into a stream for at least two weeks. KHON2.

Hawaii

Pick five Hawaii County residents out of any supermarket checkout line and chances are good that at least one is buying groceries with food stamps. Tribune-Herald.

In a trend that has worsened over the past years, children in Hawaii are more likely to be living in poverty, have parents lacking secure employment and are living in households with a high housing cost burden, according to a national survey released today. West Hawaii Today.

Democrats will have a choice between a former union leader and a first-term County Council member in the state House District 3 primary. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Lifelong residents of rural Olowalu in West Maui say their town wants the proposed improvements and amenities that would come with plans to build some 1,500 housing units in the area. Maui News.

A candidate forum featuring Maui County candidates in contested raced in the Aug. 11 primary election will be televised 6 to 9 tonight on Akaku Channels 52, 53 and 54. Maui News.

Last week, Hui No Ke Ola Pono, a native Hawaiian health care center, installed Lui Hokoana as their board of director’s president along with several new officers at the J. Walter Cameron Center in Wailuku. Maui Now.

Kauai

The Department of Land and Natural Resources announced it will be strictly enforcing state parks rules, including those that prohibit dogs on the beach. Garden Island.

Phyllis Kunimura, Koloa Plantation Days Board President, was pleased people were talking Monday night at The Shops at Kukui‘ula. Garden Island.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

U.S. Senate campaign simmers through emails, federal judge to hear gay marriage case, voter registration up, Hollywood coming to Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2012 All Hawaii News
Waikiki highrises (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
Waikiki may soon see its first new high-rise hotel in more than three years. Star-Advertiser.

A federal judge in Hawaii will hear arguments today on whether Gov. Neil Abercrombie should remain as a defendant in a lawsuit by two women who claim they’re being denied the right to marry. Associated Press.

In a campaign email sent out Sunday, Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Ed Case criticized political rival Mazie Hirono for accepting more than $700,000 from political action committees this election season. Civil Beat.

Mazie Hirono last week accused Linda Lingle and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce of being "two peas in a pod" for opposing President Barack Obama's priorities. Civil Beat.

Congresswoman Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, a candidate for U.S. Senate, missed three additional votes last week so she could continue to fundraise and campaign for the seat left open by the retirement of U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii. Hawaii Reporter.

A $2.2 million expedition that hoped to find wreckage from Amelia Earhart's final flight is on its way back to Hawaii without the dramatic, conclusive plane images searchers were hoping to attain. Associated Press.

Voter registration increased statewide this year for the fourth primary election in a row. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii may require skippers of power driven boats in state waters to complete a boating safety course. Associated Press.

State roundup for July 24. Associated Press.

Oahu
Being Honolulu mayor has its perks. Just ask Peter Carlisle. In November, he rolled out the red carpet for 21 world leaders from the Asia-Pacific region — including President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama — arriving in Honolulu for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation biannual summit. Star-Advertiser.

Not So Public: Open Records Agency Takes Up Civil Beat Appeal, 1 Year Later. Civil Beat.

Reapportionment – the redrawing of Hawai’i’s Legislative boundaries based on population changes in the 2010 Census – has forced a number of veteran lawmakers to face each other in a Primary Election run-off. Hawaii Public Radio.

More highway lanes will soon be available through one of the H-1s bottleneck areas, as lane re-striping gets underway. KHON2.

Hawaii

County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi closed the Hilo Elections Office on Monday for an audit of the county voter registration list, an action a state elections official called unprecedented and a county councilman called “fishy.” West Hawaii Today.

The county Office of Elections was closed Monday for a manual check of its more than 101,000 registered voters and to weed out any irregularities. Tribune-Herald.

Mayors Race Erupts on Big Island Over Geothermal. Civil Beat.

Maui

Two first-time Maui political hopefuls are among the few Hawaii candidates to so far tap into the state's public funding program that matches dollar-for-dollar campaign contributions of $100 or less. Maui News.

The Oscars of the Hawaii coffee industry brewed a lot of interest Saturday at the Maui Tropical Plantation in Waikapu. Maui News.

Jo Anne Johnson Winer – Maui’s Veteran Public Official. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauai may not be getting “The Hunger Games” sequel, but it looks like another Hollywood feature will be filmed in Hawaii. Pacific Business News.

The Kaua‘i Charter Review Commission on Monday approved the final list of questions related to proposed Kaua‘i Charter amendments to be included in this year’s ballot. Garden Island.

Next year the Kilauea Lighthouse, the northernmost place of the Main Hawaiian Islands, will celebrate its 100th anniversary. As a result, the Kilauea community is going through a comprehensive restoration. Garden Island.

Lanai

For months, it's been a battle of the Big Wind signs on Lanai. Both pro and anti wind farm factions have draped banners on buildings and placed signs in front yards that read, "No Windmills on Lanai!" or "Wind Power - To Keep Lanai Green." Civil Beat.

Molokai

In order to bring more tangible data to ongoing efforts to better understand Hawaiian monk seals, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has developed a research project that will attach Crittercams, or small video cameras, to the backs of the seals. Molokai Dispatch.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Hawaii orchid show highlights the best, education experiment yields mixed results, rail tax nets $47M, Hawaii County mayor touts garbage incinerator, Native Hawaiian roll commission starts work, military irks Molokai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright All Hawaii News
Orchid (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
Exquisite shapes, vibrant colors, and alluring fragrances of one of the world’s most exotic flowers fascinated attendees of Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club’s 30th annual show and sale Sunday in Honalo. West Hawaii Today.

Ed Case and Mazie Hirono will square off one last time this Thursday, on a primetime debate on Hawaii News Now sponsored with the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Music, emotion and the spirit of aloha filled Washington Place on Friday as members of the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission began a yearlong effort to register native Hawaiians toward the creation of a future sovereign government. KITV4.

State officials are touting Hawaii's new policy to deal with the impacts of climate change, from sea-level rise to decreased stream flow. Civil Beat.

In 2010 the state Department of Education formed two "zones of school innovation,"one on the Leeward Coast of Oahu and the other in the Kau-Pahoa region of Hawaii island, in hopes of providing the state's lowest-performing schools with intensive help. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii may require skippers of power driven boats in state waters to complete a boating safety course. Associated Press.

A federal judge in Hawaii has dismissed a human trafficking case against executives and business associates of a labor recruiting company accused of exploiting hundreds of farm workers from Thailand. KITV4.

Oahu
Born in Waipahu. Raised in Hilo. Spend any amount of time with Kirk Caldwell and you're likely to hear those words. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle seems to be everywhere these days. Civil Beat.

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation will receive nearly $47 million in revenue from a surcharge on Hawaii's general excise tax for the second quarter of this year. Pacific Business News.

Waikiki hotels are enjoying higher occupancy this summer despite big increases in average room rates. Pacific Business News.

City purchasing records do not support the Fire Department’s version of how a controversial $175,000 consulting contract was awarded in 2010, a review of those records today showed. Hawaii Reporter.

Health care professionals from all over the state spent several days dealing with a hypothetical large scale tsunami disaster on O’ahu . Hawaii Public Radio.

A national historic landmark is rusting away. The "Falls of Clyde" is docked near the Aloha Tower Marketplace. It was one of the first vessels to sail for Matson and has been around the islands for nearly 100-years. Hawaii News Now.

Changes coming to once popular park near UH Manoa campus. KHON2.

Hawaii

About three months after Hawaii County ended a pilot project for hauling garbage to the west side, Mayor Billy Kenoi said he is now in favor of a waste-to-energy project to resolve the Big Island’s looming landfill crisis. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

A candidate forum, featuring Maui County candidates in contested races in the Aug. 11 primary election, will be held 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday and broadcast live on three Akaku: Maui Community Television channels. Maui News.

A grass-roots Maui charity that claimed to be raising $20 million for a 42-acre post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury treatment center for service members has dissolved after being investigated by the state attorney general's office, officials said. Star-Advertiser.

A handful of Maui Meadows residents expressed optimism and excitement about the county's pilot curbside recycling project that county crews were kick-starting Saturday by distributing green and blue carts in the South Maui neighborhood. Maui News.

Kauai
The former USS Kilauea is the latest ship sunk as part of the Rim of the Pacific exercises in and around the Hawaiian Islands. Associated Press.

Kamehameha Schools presented keys to five Hawaiian-focused and conversion charter schools recently who will receive their share of 24 modular buildings donated by Kamehameha Schools totaling $4.8 million. Garden Island.

Molokai

The Marines have backed down from a plan to increase helicopter touch-and-go practice landings at the tiny airport that serves as the lifeline for Kalaupapa. But the Marines continue to anger residents with a proposal to build a helicopter fuel depot "topside" on Molokai. Star-Advertiser.


Friday, July 20, 2012

Gov. Abercrombie touts positive budget, Honolulu Fire Dept. merger opposed, Hawaiian roll commission advances, Kauai seabird maimings investigated, invasive species council seeks money, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie
Gov. Abercrombie budget news conference courtesy photo
Hawaii ended the last fiscal year $300 million in the black, prompting Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Thursday to say he wanted to concentrate on restoring some government services like workers killing rats and agriculture inspectors looking out for invasive species. Associated Press.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie said Thursday that stronger-than-expected state revenue growth last fiscal year could allow the state to restore spending on programs that had been reduced to help balance the budget. Star-Advertiser.

Pointing to an increase of 15 percent in general funds and a positive balance of $306 million at the end of the just-completed fiscal year, the Abercrombie administration says it can likely restore some cuts to programs and positions made over the past 20 months of belt-tightening. Civil Beat.

The state has ended the fiscal year with more than a $300 million positive balance. KHON2.

Hope and optimism were words used repeatedly today when talking about Hawaii's economy. Hawaii News Now.

The commission charged with putting together a roll of Native Hawaiians to form in their own government will announce details of a year-long campaign. Hawaii News Now.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce this week spent another $154,000 on ads endorsing Republican U.S. Senate candidate Linda Lingle, according to the most recent look into the public files. Civil Beat.

Looking for archived government records? They might be in the freezer. Civil Beat.


Hawaii
Island Air
Island Air launched a new look and logo Thursday as part of the Hawaii airline’s new business plan, which includes replacing and doubling the number of turboprop aircraft in its interisland fleet from four to eight by the end of next year. Pacific Business News.

The neighbor islands will receive $3.44 million to buy new county buses, Hawaii’s congressional delegation announced Thursday. Star-Advertiser.

State roundup for July 20. Associated Press.

Oahu

State Health Director Loretta Fuddy said she is not prepared to support a merger of the city Department of Emergency Services with the Honolulu Fire Department as outlined in a study that's mired in controversy. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Department of Health has cautioned Mayor Peter Carlisle against merging the city's Fire and Emergency Services agencies at this time, telling him in a letter Thursday that consolidation "seems premature." Civil Beat.

Honolulu City purchasing records do not support the Fire Department’s version of how a controversial $175,000 consulting contract was awarded in 2010, a review of those records today showed. Hawaii Reporter.

It could take a year and a half to transform a neglected area of Diamond Head into the new home of the Culinary Institute of the Pacific. KITV4.

A businessman was arrested Thursday and charged with harassment for spraying water on people protesting his business that transports kayaks to Kailua Beach Park. Star-Advertiser.

KITV returned to Oceanic Time Warner Cable's system in Hawaii Thursday afternoon after a 10-day blackout when the Honolulu ABC affiliate's parent company, Hearst Television Inc., reached an agreement on retransmission fees with the local cable company's parent, Time Warner Cable. Pacific Business News.

A Hawai`i home care company for seniors has been ordered to pay a former employee nearly $200,000  for reportedly discriminating against her age. Hawaii Public Radio.

Former Governor Ben Cayetano: Mayoral Profile. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii

The two Democrats who want to win over the 27,420 registered voters in Hawaii County's reapportioned Senate District 1 agree that the economy and job creation are priorities for the island's major city, Hilo. Star-Advertiser.

The path to the moon runs through the crater of an ancient cinder cone on Hawaii’s tallest mountain.Tribune-Herald.

There was more talk but no action Thursday on overriding Mayor Billy Kenoi’s veto of three bills passed by the Hawaii County Council. Tribune-Herald.

Absence of Protesters Prompts Council Accusations. Big Island Now.

Big Brothers Big Sisters will expand services to West Hawaii by 2013. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

The California landowner developing two large shopping centers in Kihei says plans for the property have always included the possibility of retail despite a legal challenge that contends the land was exclusively intended for a light industrial park. Maui News.

Organizations trying to control or eradicate species from coqui frogs to fire ants and fountain grass are asking the Hawaii Invasive Species Council for $2.9 million in funding for the current fiscal year - including some $260,000 to fight axis deer on Maui and the Big Island. Associated Press.

Unforeseen problems have been encountered by construction crews while replacing a wastewater force main in Lahaina. Maui Now.

Kauai
Ocean forces lifeguard tower relocation, road barriers in Kekaha. Garden Island.

Maiming deaths of seabirds still under investigation. Garden Island.

Kauai County and the Kaua‘i Historical Society are offering free guided walking tours of the County Building in commemoration of the building’s centennial. Star-Advertiser.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Hawaii deposit fee going up, Navy tests biofuel at RIMPAC, Hirono misses votes to campaign, Kona coffee farmers warn of fakes, OSHA to take over safety inspections, Lanai group gets standing in Larry Ellison utilities decision, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Copyright All Hawaii News
Hawaii recycling center (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
The deposit fee for beverage containers in Hawai’i will increase by a half-cent to keep the successful HI-5 recycling program in operation for two more years. Maui Now.

The cost of a beer or soda likely will creep up in September as the state kicks in a half-cent increase of the beverage container fee. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii will increase by a half-cent the bottle deposit fee that the state charges beverage manufacturers, distributors and importers, state health officials said Wednesday. Pacific Business News.

The federal government begins conducting some workplace safety inspections for the State Labor Department next month as part of the recovery from budget cuts and layoffs under the administration of former Gov. Linda Lingle, state officials said Wednesday. Hawaii News Now.

Former U.S. Rep. Ed Case had the worst fundraising quarter of his U.S. Senate campaign, raising doubts about the strength of his organization with the Democratic primary against U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono just weeks away. Star-Advertiser.

Congresswoman Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, who is a hotly contested primary race for U.S. Senate against former Congressman Ed Case, (D-Hawaii/2002-2007), missed several votes in the last few weeks, so she could continue to fundraise and campaign for the seat left open by the retirement of U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii. Hawaii Reporter.

Colleen Hanabusa and Charles Djou ran in three separate elections — a special, primary and general election — for the 1st Congressional District just two years ago. Civil Beat.

U.S. Navy ships and planes operated on a biofuel blend off Hawaii during Rim of the Pacific war games Wednesday as part of a renewable-fuel push by Navy leaders — the biggest test of its kind and one that has become politicized and opposed by some in Congress because of its costs. Star-Advertiser.

As part of this year's RIMPAC exercises the US Navy is emphasizing its push to go green. KHON2.

Honolulu, Hilo, the Kahului-Wailuku area on Maui and Kapaa on Kauai posted declines in private-sector employment of between 1 percent and 4 percent, according to an analysis by Pacific Business News affiliate On Numbers, which used new U.S. Census Bureau data to analyze year-to-year employment trends for all metropolitan and micropolitan areas. Pacific Business News.

Kapalua, Molokai and Lanai airports are "absolutely all on the list" of places Hawaiian Airlines is considering to fly as it takes its first steps in the process of forming a subsidiary airline, a Hawaiian official said Tuesday. Maui News.

State roundup for July 19. Associated Press.

Oahu

Windward Oahu residents met Wednesday night to come up with a way to convince the city not to move forward with its plans to construct a Kaneohe to Kailua sewer tunnel. KHON2.

The Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation is expanding its video surveillance program at city parks thanks to an $11,000 gift by the Palehua Community Association. KITV4.

The Sierra Club will hold off on endorsing a candidate for Honolulu mayor until someone emerges who backs rail and fights urban sprawl, the Hawaii nonprofit's leaders said Wednesday. Civil Beat.

The race between state Senate candidates Pohai Ryan and Laura Thielen is nearly tied — at least in terms of fundraising. Civil Beat.

Former state Rep. John Medeiros died Friday morning in his sleep after battling Parkinson's disease and a heart condition, his wife said. He was 83. Star-Advertiser.

The first glimpse in more than a decade into former Hawaii Governor Ben Cayetano’s financial backers shows he can still count on some old friends for support. Civil Beat.

Mayor Peter Carlisle: Profile. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii

A County Council committee on Wednesday had a sunny outlook for a nonbinding resolution asking the state Public Utilities Commission to make it easier for homeowners to hook up solar panels. West Hawaii Today.

Two seasoned politicians will face off next month to become the Democratic candidate for state senator of the newly created 4th District on Hawaii Island. Star-Advertiser.

A group of mostly small-scale Kona coffee farmers wants to alert consumers that a new state law could affect the quality of Hawaii’s premier specialty crop. Associated Press.

More than 30 years after a federal judge ordered the state to fix a broken fence on the upper slopes of Mauna Kea on the Big Island in order to protect endangered birds, officials will finally spend about $1 million to patch the holes. Civil Beat.

The mauka-makai beach access road to Kohanaiki Coastal Community Park will close for approximately six weeks for road improvements. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Maui Memorial Medical Center will be the only non-Oahu hospital participating in a mock disaster exercise Friday as part of the U.S. Navy's ongoing Rim of the Pacific international exercises in Hawaii. Maui News.

A drier climate would jeopardize Maui's water supply and native ecosystems, said UH-Manoa geography professor Tom Giambelluca. Maui News.

State regulators have granted Lana'ians for Sensible Growth limited participation in the ongoing review of whether transferring Lanai's public utilities to Larry Ellison, who owns the vast majority of the island, is in the public interest. Maui News.

Kauai

Despite a drop in the number of Kaua‘i public schools that have met federal standards this year, local schools have shown an overall improvement, according to Bill Arakaki, Kaua‘i Complex superintendent at the state Department of Education. Garden Island.

With many summer programs coming to an end and the first day of school looming two weeks away, youngsters can take advantage of this window to plan their entries for the Lego Contest, which is part of the Home Economics Show at the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau Fair, Aug. 23 through 26. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

NASA tests moon exploration in Hawaii, tax collections up, Arizona sheriff says Obama birth certificate forged, Hawaii pushes for Obama library, students improve, still lag on Adequate Yearly Progress, $12.7M HUD funding for Native Hawaiian housing, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2012 All Hawaii News
Hawaii lava field (c) 2012 All Hawaii News
NASA is conducting a nine-day field study in Hawaii to evaluate new techniques for exploring the moon. Associated Press.

NASA is conducting a nine-day field test starting Tuesday outside Hilo, Hawaii, to evaluate new exploration techniques for the surface of the moon. PR Newswire.

Hawaii public school students made big reading and math gains in all tested grades last school year, growth that U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan called an "encouraging sign" for continuing improvement. Star-Advertiser.

More than half of Hawaii schools have not met the so-called Adequate Yearly Progress goals required under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, the preliminary 2012 results released Tuesday show. Civil Beat.

The latest test scores under the federal mandate known as No Child Left Behind should provide a shot in the arm for Hawaii educators. KITV4.

Statewide test scores are in for public schools and they're being hailed as a year of unprecedented improvement. KHON2.

Investigators for an Arizona sheriff’s volunteer posse say President Barack Obama’s Hawaii birth certificate is definitely fraudulent. Associated Press.

Controversy in Chicago could help Hawaii land the next presidential library. Hawaii News Now.

State tax collections were up 14.9 percent through the end of the fiscal year in June, according to the state Department of Taxation, but the revenue growth dropped to 10.2 percent when the delay in income tax refunds from 2010 is factored out. Star-Advertiser.

Former Gov. Linda Lingle thinks Congress has lost its way. Star-Advertiser.

The economy and job creation were key priorities several U.S. Senate and House candidates listed during the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce moderated forum Monday evening. West Hawaii Today.

The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands will receive $12.7 million in federal funding to develop affordable housing for Native Hawaiians. Pacific Business News.

The renewed emphasis on Asia and the Pacific has heightened the importance of military engagement with old partners such as Singapore as the United States seeks to create new training and basing opportunities where it can. Star-Advertiser.

The state is out tens of millions of dollars in harbor work and barges for the failed Superferry. KITV4.

Oahu

With their positions on major issues already established in previous debates, the three main candidates for Hono­lulu mayor took turns Tuesday swiping at each others leadership style, abilities and accomplishments in office during a debate broadcast live. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu’s pro-rail business community is backing Kirk Caldwell over incumbent Peter Carlisle in the race for mayor, throwing more money toward his campaign than to either of the other candidates. Civil Beat.

In an effort to save the city government and Oahu residents time and money, Hono­lulu will soon accept and store construction plans electronically, Mayor Peter Carlisle announced Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Department of Health is on the verge of taking an official position against the politically charged proposed merger of Honolulu's Fire and Emergency Services Departments, according to the DOH division chief. Civil Beat.

A group of three people has created the Honolulu Affordable Housing Partners and is in final negotiations to purchase all of the city’s affordable housing units. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii

A Florida couple say they plan to file a claim against Hawaii Volcanoes National Park after receiving fines totaling $625 on a recent trip to the Big Island attraction. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian cuts neighbor island fares. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

State regulators on Monday granted Lana'ians for Sensible Growth limited participant status in the ongoing review of whether transferring Lanai's public utilities to the island's new owner, Larry Ellison, is in the public interest. Maui News.

The state Office of Planning says it believes that the California landowner developing two Kihei shopping malls "has failed to substantially comply with its representations" of the project now under construction. Maui News.

The Department of Water Supply has released an updated version of its Upcountry Water Meter Priority List. Maui Now.

Kauai

About a 120 people attended Tuesday’s forum for council candidates, and many more were able to hear it live on KQNG AM 570. Garden Island.

In the face of several supporters of a community center honoring one of the largest cultural and ethnic groups on the island, Kaua‘i County Council members leaned favorably to grant land for a Filipino community center. Garden Island.