Monday, June 3, 2013

15K Hawaii civilian defense employees face furloughs, hepatitis alert from Costco, Honolulu fixing sewers, Hawaii County faces fee hikes, Godzilla movie cast call draws hundreds, Maui hires deer expert, Lt. Gov. Tsutsui opening Maui office, Kauai to hire cops, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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U.S. Navy Marching Band in Hilo parade (c) 2013 All Hawaii News
Nearly 15,000 civilian Department of Defense employees in Hawaii are expected to receive furlough notices by Wednesday, while employees of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration won't face any furloughs at all. Pacific Business News.

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has invited the defense ministers from the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to meet in Hawaii next year. Pacific Business News.

The state Department of Health is investigating two cases of hepatitis A that may be linked to a frozen organic berry drink that was pulled from Costco shelves on Wednesday. DOH spokesperson Janice Okubo said one case was reported on Oahu, the other on Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

Next year's congressional elections represent the first time in 55 years that Dan Inouye won't be directly involved, either as a candidate or kingmaker. Civil Beat.

A private mainland health care provider remains interested in a possible takeover of Hawaii Island public hospital facilities, according to Hawaii Health Systems Corp. — but legislators will have to clear the way if such a public/private partnership is to occur. Tribune-Herald.

The gap between supply and demand of medical doctors in Hawaii is only going to widen in the next few years, according to University of Hawaii researchers. Garden Island.

It will have a huge impact on the future of Hawaii's farming industry. There are only a few days left for farmers to fill out the 2012 Agriculture census. KITV4.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie is releasing more than $21.8 million for capital improvement projects for airports and highways statewide. Associated Press.

Less than five years ago, Hawaii ranked number one in the nation for the rates that youth considered suicide, planned a suicide, and actually attempted suicide. But no more, said Elaine de Mello, who helped develop a program that’s increased awareness of the crisis and lowered the rate of suicide among Hawaii’s youth. Tribune-Herald.

State roundup for June 3. Associated Press.

Oahu

Mayor Kirk Caldwell says the city is making good progress on a federal agreement requiring a major overhaul to Oahu's sewer system. Civil Beat.

Oahu skateboarders would be required to wear helmets under two separate bills scheduled to get their first airings by the Honolulu City Council on Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu City Council members and Mayor Kirk Caldwell have been arguing for weeks over how much public money should be set aside for nonprofit special interest groups in the new city budget. Civil Beat.

Condo Mania! The nearly 5,000 units planned for Honolulu’s urban core are expected to meet pent-up demand — or could even fall short. Star-Advertiser.

A "community paramedic" program intended to reduce overuse of ambulances by chronic 911 callers has been dropped by the new city administration, but the state hopes to start a similar effort. Star-Advertiser.

Hundreds of aspiring actors and film extras braved long hours and lines Sunday along Pohukaina and Keawe streets for a shot at being cast in the "Godzilla" remake reportedly planned to be filmed this summer on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

More than 1,000 people vie for a chance to be in Godzilla movie. KHON2.

After seven years, the city of Honolulu is set to remove the large black sewage pipe that snakes along the bottom of the Ala Wai Canal and out toward the mouth of the boat harbor, adjacent to Waikiki’s famous beaches. Civil Beat.

A metallic graduation balloon is to blame for a power outage that affected nearly 2,000 customers in Waipahu overnight, according to the Hawaiian Electric Company. Hawaii News Now.

It wasn't the 95-percent-off, everything-must-go sale that brought 57-year-old Ray Feguis to the Ala Moana Center Sears last night. It was the opportunity to say goodbye to an old friend. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

The Hawaii County Council signed off on Thursday on Mayor Billy Kenoi’s proposed operating budget for next year, but county residents get another chance to weigh in on proposed tax and fee increases. On Tuesday, the council’s Finance Committee picks up Kenoi’s recommended increases to the vehicle weight tax, minimum vehicle tax and yearly registration fee. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaiian Electric Companies are targeting four goals in their latest round of long-term planning: lowering customers’ bills, creating a clean energy future, modernizing the companies’ grids and fairness. West Hawaii Today.

Sections of wall, about 12 feet high and 8 feet wide, slotted together like pieces in a jigsaw puzzle Thursday morning, as construction workers erected the main building at Kaiser Permanente’s new Kona clinic. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

A Maui County Council committee held off hiring private attorneys Friday to look into an allegation brought forward by a council member over the potential misuse of public funds to demolish the Old Wailuku Post Office. Maui News.

Perhaps as early as this week Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui will officially have an office on Maui in the county's Kalana O Maui building. Maui News.

Lieutenant Governor Shan S. Tsutsui formally announced his candidacy to continue serving the state of Hawaii in his current capacity. Maui Now.

In the struggle against one of the island's most disruptive animals, the Maui Axis Deer Working Group has hired a full-time coordinator to lead the charge against the invasive species. Maui News.

Last month, the Women's Health Center at Molokai General Hospital received a $133,232 grant from the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs to fund a new prenatal program to focus on promoting care in the first trimester of pregnancy. Maui News.

The Central Maui Landfill caught fire Sunday afternoon. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

More than 20 years after Hurricane Iniki blew the life out of the iconic Coco Palms Resort, its property owners are still hopeful of finding the right developers to return the former Wailua beachfront hotel to its former glory. Garden Island.

A plan to replace future police vacancies along with a plan to fill remaining open spots was an issue raised at the County of Kauai Police Commission meeting on Friday. Garden Island.