Monday, October 13, 2014

Djou, Takai battle for congressional seat, Aiona courts religious right, tax collections up, boaters must take classes, Hawaii Mayor Kenoi finishes Ironman, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

screen grab Hawaii News Now
Mark Takai, Charles Djou Hawaii News Now screen grab
Congressional candidates Charles Djou and Mark Takai traded jabs Sunday night in their final face-off on Hawaii News Now.

In their last scheduled statewide television appearance, Democrat Mark Takai and Republican Charles Djou broke little new ground on issues Sunday, choosing instead to sharpen their rhetoric on partisanship and who would better serve the people of Hawaii in the next Congress. Star-Advertiser.

Gubernatorial candidate James Duke Aiona and Elwin Ahu, his lieutenant governor running mate and a pastor, describe religious conservatives as one of several coalitions -- like Filipinos or small business owners -- they want to attract to their campaign. Star-Advertiser.

Faith and Politics, Aiona and Ahu, at the Blaisdell. During a gathering that resembled a religious revival, the Republican candidates for Hawaii's top offices say they are men of faith with the moral compass to lead. But they also cite other coalitions of support. Civil Beat.

While some tickets in the past have matched candidates who are distant, or even rivals, the lieutenant governor nominees this year complement the aspiring chief executives. Lieutenant governor candidates rarely alone drive voter behavior, but they can help enhance a ticket. The No. 2 job can also be a pathway to higher office. Since statehood, three former lieutenant governors — George Ariyoshi, John Waihee and Ben Cayetano — became governors, while two — Mazie Hirono and Brian Schatz — became U.S. senators. Star-Advertiser.

One of five proposed constitutional amendments on the Nov. 4 ballot will ask voters whether the state can fund partnerships with private preschools to build capacity and ultimately serve all of the state's 17,000 4-year-olds with a publicly funded preschool education. The ballot measure has become a divisive issue among early-learning advocates and the union for public school teachers. Star-Advertiser.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources will soon be cracking down on boaters. Starting Nov. 10, anyone behind the wheel of a motorized vessel must show proof of completing an approved boater safety course. KHON2.

The state’s tax collections for the first quarter of fiscal 2015, which started July 1, are up 2.7 percent overall compared to the same period last year, according to a report the Hawaii Department of Taxation released Friday. Civil Beat.

Governor Neil Abercrombie recently granted a nice chunk of change to the Dept. of Business, Economic Development and Tourism for the purpose of researching ways to build a new film studio facility. As part of DBET, the Hawaii Film Office is excited for the opportunity, saying this is a step in the right direction for Hawaii’s economy. To the tune of $100,000, it’s going to help officials figure out what the local film industry needs right now, and also search for the best location to build a brand new studio. KHON2.

Close to 1,000 teachers are recruited each year to work in Hawaii. Some fill spots left when people retire. Others take the places of hopeful teachers who come to Hawaii but can’t survive on the salaries they are paid. Garden Island.

Opinion: However the general election turns out, it'll represent the most significant youth movement in Hawaii's highest offices since the early days of statehood. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu

Voters have two very different options in the race for the District 6 Honolulu City Council seat, which covers much of Oahu’s urban core, including downtown Honolulu and its surrounding neighborhoods. It’s Democrat versus Republican, albeit for a nonpartisan office. It’s an incumbent who touts her insider political acumen against a challenger who casts himself as a political outsider. Civil Beat.

Local construction firm Nan Inc., the lowest of three bidders looking to build the Honolulu rail system's first nine stations from West Oahu to Aloha Stadium, has dropped its recent protest against a decision to cancel those bids. Star-Advertiser.

The city's new Sit-Lie ordinance was aimed at reducing the number of homeless in Waikiki, but now some street vendors contend its also being used against them.Hawaii News Now.

A $75 million, 17-story senior-living facility on Kalakaua Avenue near the Hawaii Convention Center that will officially begin construction next week, is expected to create a total of 460 jobs, including 160 permanent full-time jobs when the project is completed in early 2016. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii

Roger Christie has become a cause célèbre in cannabis culture. The 65-year-old founder of The Hawaii Cannabis Ministry in Hilo believes his arrest with 13 others — including his wife, Share — by local and federal authorities on July 8, 2010, was due to his outspokenness for marijuana legalization. Tribune-Herald.

They don’t leave butts on the beach. And there’s no secondhand smoke. But Kona Councilman Dru Kanuha thinks electronic cigarettes and vaporizers ought to go the way of the traditional leaf-and-fire tobacco product and be banned from county facilities, parks and beaches. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi completed a 2.4 miles swim, a 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 mile marathon to finish his first IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona. The mayor used nearly all the time allotted to him, crossing the finish line in dramatic fashion with about 15 minutes to spare. Big Island Video News.

Hawai’i County Mayor Billy Kenoi can now say that he has completed one of the most grueling tests a triathlete can ever accomplish. Kenoi, 46, crossed the finish line Saturday night of the IRONMAN World Championships, presented by GoPro, with a finishing time of 16:54:13. He was the 1,982nd finisher of the race. Big Island Now.

Does the Big Island have a libertarian streak? The Hawaii Libertarian Party is hoping so as it seeks to establish itself as an alternative to both Democratic and Republican parties. Tribune-Herald.

The dean of the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy called the release Friday of $33 million for the school to construct a permanent building “a great day for the college, a great day for the state and probably even a greater day for the whole Pacific region.” Tribune-Herald.

Hawai‘i County Civil Defense officials say a narrow breakout along the north side of the Puna lava flow has advanced approximately 60 yards, becoming the new leading edge. Hawaii News Now.

IN PELE’S PATH: Pahoa residents closest to flow ready to leave. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The University of Hawaiʻi today announced that Lui Hokoana has been recommended to the Board of Regents as the University of Hawai‘i Maui College’s chancellor. Maui Now.

Median prices for single-family homes and condos in Maui County leaped 21.3 percent to $570,000 and 34.8 percent to $465,000 respectively in September compared to 2013, the Realtors Association of Maui reported late last week. Maui News.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is finalizing a proposed plan that would remove unexploded ordnance from the former Makanalua Bombing Range on Molokai's Kalaupapa peninsula. Maui News.

Kauai
Subsistence fishers, lineal descendants of Hāʻena and community members from across Kaua‘i and the rest of the state testified in support of the Hāʻena Community Based Subsistence Fishing Area rules. Hawaii Independent.

Kapaa High School registered to participate in the safe driving commitment, sponsored by State Farm.  Anyone 14 years of age and over, not just Kapaa High School students, can go online starting Oct. 15 and click to commit to safe driving, thereby registering a “vote” toward winning — on the road and in the contest. Garden Island.