Thursday, August 15, 2013

Waikiki International Marketplace shutting down, German tourist loses arm in Maui shark attack, federal agent murder trial goes to jury today, state plans juvenile justice reform, Hawaii council to mull ag tourism bill, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2013 All Hawaii News
Waikiki International Marketplace (c) 2013 All Hawaii News
Hundreds of tenants at the soon-to-be redeveloped International Market Place in Waikiki recently received lease termination notices from landowner Queen Emma Land Co., which say that they must vacate the property by New Year’s Eve at 8 p.m., Pacific Business News has learned.

The State launched a bi-partisan, multi-departmental effort today to analyze and develop legislation to curb juvenile crime and reduce cost for taxpayers. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald, and state lawmakers Sen. President Donna Mercado Kim and Rep. Mele Carroll Wednesday announced the launch of a bipartisan probe of the state’s flawed juvenile justice system. Star-Advertiser.

Innovative justice can create surprising bedfellows. On Wednesday, the Hawaii chief justice, Mark Recktenwald — a Republican appointee to the court — praised the Democratic governor, Neil Abercrombie, for supporting the state's 2-year-old justice reinvestment initiative. Civil Beat.

The goal of a new initiative launched today is to improve Hawaii's troubled juvenile justice system by reducing crime while cutting costs. Roughly 5,000 youth are currently incarcerated in Hawaii. According to experts, about 80% of them have a substance abuse problem. Hawaii News Now.

The nonprofit assigned to establishing Hawaii’s new health insurance marketplace expects to enroll as many as 300,000 island residents, including 100,000 who are uninsured, by the end of next year. Hawaii is one of 15 states setting up its own health insurance exchange to match qualified individuals to subsidized health plans. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Supreme Court, in a ruling that was thorough and reasoned, opted against invalidating a Maui zoning decision but ultimately sent a message that county and state officials should heed: The Sunshine Law means that the public must have access to government when key decisions are made. Star-Advertiser.

It is a challenge that farmers around the islands are very familiar with. The dramatic rise in electricity costs in Hawaii has been cutting into their profits — or adding to their losses — and increasing local food prices. This makes it difficult for them to compete with large, mainland and foreign farm operations. Civil Beat.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie has named two people to the Hawaiian Homes Commission, filling two of three vacancies on the nine-member panel that oversees the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands. Abercrombie appointed Wallace A. Ishibashi Jr. to represent East Hawaii County and Patricia W. Sheehan to the Kauai seat. Star-Advertiser.

State roundup for August 15. Associated Press.

Oahu

Tens of thousands of native sea urchins have been marshaled in the fight against invasive seaweeds threatening patches of reef in Kaneohe Bay. The sea urchins, Tripneustes gratilla or hawa‘e, serve as a biological control after most of the invasive seaweed is removed by a suction machine. Star-Advertiser.

Attorneys are expected to deliver closing arguments to jurors who will decide whether a federal agent is guilty of murder in a 2011 Waikiki shooting. Associated Press.

A jury of eight men and four women who heard 20 days of testimony through  more than a month will listen to closing arguments today before deliberating the fate of State Department special agent Christopher Deedy in the death of a Kailua man. Star-Advertiser.

After taking about a week off, the murder trial of Christopher Deedy is about to wrap up. Closing arguments are set for Thursday. KHON2.

The U.S. Army has finalized its plan to study marine resources at Makua Beach and surrounding areas. Hawaii Reporter.

Campbell High School teacher Corey Rosenlee encourages his students to break the rules. A social studies teacher, Rosenlee has his 11th and 12th graders playing "crazy robot." Civil Beat.

Hawaii
The U.S. Supreme Court could decide whether Hawaii Island gets to keep its fourth state Senate seat, after opponents of how the state redrew its legislative boundaries filed an appeal Friday with the nation’s highest court. West Hawaii Today.

A bill that would relax regulations for tourism operations on farm land is coming back before the Hawaii County Council’s Planning Committee. West Hawaii Today.

An effluent pump malfunction led to the discharge Tuesday afternoon of about 7,600 gallons of wastewater into the ocean from the Papaikou Wastewater Treatment Plant. Dora Beck, the county’s Wastewater Division chief, said the shoreline area near the facility’s outfall was closed “as a precaution” between Kekiwi Point and Waipahi Point. Tribune-Herald.

VIDEO: HI-SEAS crew emerges from isolated habitat dome. Big Island Video News.

Six researchers have spent the past four months living in a small dome on a barren Hawaii lava field at an elevation of 8,000 feet, trying to figure out what foods astronauts might eat on Mars and during deep-space missions. Associated Press.

Researchers have been living inside a remote habitat 8,000 feet atop Mauna Loa. They’re part of a NASA-funded study to simulate what it’s like to live on Mars. Hawaii Public Radio.

Maui

A visitor from Germany was critically injured and lost her right arm in an apparent shark attack Wednesday afternoon at a Makena beach in South Maui. It was the fifth shark attack so far this year in Maui waters, where a jump in attacks was seen. Star-Advertiser.

A woman visiting from Germany lost her right arm in a shark attack at Palauea Beach in Wailea and was in critical condition at Maui Memorial Medical Center on Wednesday night after the second shark incident in two days off Maui. Maui News.

A 20-year-old woman from Germany remains hospitalized in critical condition, after her right arm was severed in a shark attack at Palauea Beach, also known as White Rock in Mākena, on Wednesday afternoon, county officials confirmed. Maui Now.

Officials have closed two miles of beaches in Makena following a shark attack on a snorkeler at Palauea Beach, also known as "White Rock." Hawaii News Now.

An arbitration award for Maui County police officers will cost $2.75 million more this fiscal year and a grand total of $26.6 million more over four years, according to Budget Director Sandy Baz. Maui News.

Maui County and the Maui Police Department have reached a monetary settlement with a woman, who was the victim of false arrest and imprisonment and extorted for sex by police officers in 2008, attorneys involved in the case said in a joint statement Tuesday. Maui News.

The state Board of Land and Natural Resources waived a $1,000 fine last month that the department had initially imposed on Maui Ocean Activities for "unauthorized commercial activities" conducted at Wailea Beach, according to a department spokeswoman. Maui News.

Kauai

More than 900 Kauai businesses and homeowners — especially oceanfront property owners — who benefit from federal flood insurance subsidies could see rate increases because of a law signed by President Barack Obama in 2012. Garden Island.

There was a time when Hanamaulu Beach Park was the crown jewel of Hanamaulu, a mostly residential community built to house sugar plantation workers from the Lihue Plantation decades ago. Not anymore, according to some area residents. In response to rampant crime and vandalism, the county will close the park from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily, starting Monday. Garden Island.

Kauai County's Liquor Control Commission has named acting director Gerald T. Rapozo as the permanent replacement for former director Eric Honma, who retired in April. Star-Advertiser.

Lanai

Silicon Valley tycoon Larry Ellison, the founder of Oracle, defended the National Security Agency’s controversial domestic surveillance on Tuesday, saying it was needed to protect the public from terrorism. “It’s great. It’s essential,” said Ellison during an interview with CBS News. Civil Beat.