Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Hanabusa fires up debate, board members quit over disclosure law, Hawaii sustainability advances, Hilo to get fireworks redo, Diamond Head souvenir kiosk opens, Coco Palms developers vow to rebuild, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Kirk Caldwell, Billy Kenoi, Alan Arakawa, Bernard P. Carvalho, Jr., Kamana'opono Crabbe
Abercrombie, county mayors, OHA CEO, courtesy photo
Gov. Neil Abercrombie, joined by the four county mayors and Office of Hawaiian Affairs CEO Kamana‘opono Crabbe, on Monday launched the Aloha+ Challenge, a series of targets for the state to reach in various sectors of sustainability, renewable energy and natural resource management. Star-Advertiser.

Top Hawaii state and county leaders, with the support of leading businesses and nonprofit groups, launched what’s called the Aloha+ Challenge: A Culture of Sustainability – He Nohona ‘Ae‘oia. Civil Beat.

The State and Counties’ Chief Executives and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs signed a joint declaration today to launch a sustainability effort that will take place over the next 16 years. Hawaii Public Radio.

A new state law that makes public the financial interests of members serving on more than a dozen state boards and commissions has prompted the resignations of at least 14 volunteer members, including four regents from the University of Hawaii's governing board. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers gave the resource-strapped Ethics Commission what it wanted last legislative session — the public’s help in sifting through hundreds of records to weed out financial conflicts of interest among dozens of powerful state board members. But with all that promise has come controversy — and a growing number of resignations. Civil Beat.

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa may be changing gears in her Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate against incumbent Brian Schatz, shifting to a more aggressive approach as the final month of the campaign approaches. Hanabusa repeatedly confronted Schatz on several issues during a televised debate on Monday night, slamming her rival on his experience, appointment and ability to read bills. Associated Press.

In a taut and punchy performance, U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa on Monday night sought to depict U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz as unprepared for the legislative rigor of the Senate. Star-Advertiser.

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa still doesn’t have anything nice to say about U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz. Hanabusa, who’s trailing in the polls and in fundraising, took several swipes at the sitting senator during their first televised debate Monday on KITV. Civil Beat.

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa may be changing gears in her Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate against incumbent Brian Schatz, shifting to a more aggressive approach. Hawaii News Now.

In the first ever televised debate between Sen. Brian Schatz and Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, the candidates had plenty of chances to show the public who would be the better candidate in 2014. KITV4.

CD1 Speed Date. Progressive Democrats of Hawaii and Americans for Democratic Action, Hawaii will hold a speed dating forum with democratic candidates running in the first congressional district primary election. Hawaii Independent.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Saturday enacted into law a bill that opens farm dwellings to child care programs. West Hawaii Today.

The U.S. Department of Education has listed three University of Hawaii community colleges in its index of the 95 public two-year institutions with the lowest net prices in the country. The net price factors in the average cost of attending college — including tuition, fees and other expenses — as well as the average amount of institutional and federal financial aid provided by the campus. Civil Beat.

Oahu
Officially licensed T-shirts, souvenirs and other items went on sale to hikers coming from the Diamond Head crater trail Monday following the opening of a new kiosk at the Diamond Head State Monument in Honolulu. Pacific Business News.

Aerial Banners North insists a federal waiver allows it to fly commercial banners over Hawaii, but a new statement by the Federal Aviation Administration suggests otherwise. Star-Advertiser.

The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism is trying to give the public a better statistical understanding of Kaka­ako as the area undergoes accelerated residential development. The agency released a report Monday filled with characteristics of Kakaako's population largely drawn from U.S. Census data. Star-Advertiser.

It's a hazardous stretch of Honolulu road where many kupuna often cross the street or look to catch buses in the early morning hours. Now, with the recent deaths of three older pedestrians hit by vehicles along North King Street in Kalihi, city leaders say they'll install some brighter streetlights there in the coming days to help better illuminate that area. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

Hawaii County property owners who want to claim the homeowner’s exemption to reduce their property taxes may soon be required to file a Hawaii state income tax return annually in order to qualify. West Hawaii Today.

Hilo will get another fireworks show to make up for the mishap on Independence Day, Hawaii County confirmed Monday. Tribune-Herald.

Fears that the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy’s accreditation might be lost, jeopardizing the future of the school, as well as its graduates’ ability to find work, were largely laid to rest this week. Tribune-Herald.

The state Department of Agriculture is providing $200,000 and the Hawaii Invasive Species Council has awarded a grant of $175,000 that will allow the Hawaii County Department of Parks and Recreation to establish a little fire ant control program at county parks and facilities. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

All but one of the more than 100 people who spoke before a federal panel Monday night rejected the idea of possible federal recognition of a future Native Hawaiian government, arguing the U.S. has no jurisdiction over Hawaii. U.S. Department of the Interior officials held the 14th of 15 public meetings statewide at Kame­ha­meha III Elementary on Maui. Star-Advertiser.

Department of Water Supply customers on Maui and Molokai soon will receive the 16th annual Water Quality Report in the mail. Maui News.

Kauai

Come learn about your candidates. All 27 of them. The Kauai Filipino Chamber of Commerce is hosting a political forum at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall to give voters an opportunity to understand more about those seeking office. Garden Island.

The signature drive to increase thresholds has come up short. The Kauai Chamber of Commerce’s petition, aimed at quadrupling the number of signatures required to put a proposed amendment to the Kauai County Charter to a public vote, died when it failed to earn enough signatures before the July 2 deadline. Garden Island.

By year’s end, the county is slated to begin work on approximately $22 million worth of capital improvement projects around the island. Garden Island.

Numerous projects - ranging from bridge repairs to park improvements to road reconstruction - will be put out to bid during the first quarter of the new fiscal year, according to Keith Suga, the county’s CIP program manager. Hawaii Reporter.

As fire investigators continue to sift through what remains of the Coco Palms Resort in Wailua, the Honolulu-based developers who are seeking to reopen the shuttered hotel say they intend pick up the pieces and move forward with their vision for the iconic Kauai landmark. Garden Island.