Friday, September 30, 2016

Construction boom to slow, Caldwell-Djou debate Honolulu priorities, rail costs rise to $8.6B, Maui buys 268 acres near famous surf spot, Puna Geothermal releases steam, sewage leak on Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2016 All Hawaii News
Honolulu construction © 2016 All Hawaii News
Hawaii’s booming construction industry — one of the main drivers of the state’s economy — appears to be nearing the peak of its cycle and will begin to grow at a slower pace beginning in 2018. Star-Advertiser.

In the first half of this year, some 5,000 construction workers were employed statewide as more major developments added to an already high volume of existing projects. Pacific Business News.

Retired teacher Jim Williams, one of the original members appointed to the Board of Education in 2011 after voters chose to do away with an elected school board, has resigned from the board, citing a lack of confidence and support from Gov. David Ige. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Board of Education member Jim Williams resigned Thursday, citing his differences with Gov. David Ige. Civil Beat.

For the fifth straight year, the state of Hawaii is the nation’s leader per capita in saving energy at its office buildings, the state said Thursday. Pacific Business News.

Advocates for Hawaii’s elderly celebrated a federal agency’s decision this week to bar the use of pre-dispute arbitration agreements by nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. Civil Beat.

Federal researchers have just returned from an expedition to study the biodiversity and mechanisms of an unusually rich deep-sea ecosystem off the coast of Hawaii’s Big Island. Associated Press.

People who ate at any of 51 locations in Hawaii where employees infected with hepatitis A were working may be eligible to join a class action lawsuit against Genki Sushi, as well as a distributor and importer. West Hawaii Today.

Oahu

More than 15 years after 9/11, the terrorist attacks and their aftermath became the hottest point of contention at a Honolulu mayoral debate Thursday, even as the city is facing current and serious challenges like an over-budget rail project and a rise in homelessness. Civil Beat.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell on Thursday called his six-figure-salary position on the Territorial Savings Bank board of directors “a service” — and not a second job. Star-Advertiser.

In what could be their final debate before the Nov. 8 election, Mayor Kirk Caldwell and challenger Charles Djou squared off Thursday, sparring over affordable housing, the state of Oahu's roads and what government should do to help businesses succeed. Hawaii News Now.

The Chamber of Commerce of Hawai’i hosted a Candidate Debate for Honolulu Mayor. Hawaii Public Radio.

Local rail leaders have raised their estimate yet again for how much it will cost to complete the cash-strapped 20-mile transit project, now putting the price tag at more than $8.6 billion. Star-Advertiser.

HART Raises Estimate For Total Cost Of Rail Project To $8.6 Billion. At that price, there’s a funding gap of $1.8 billion. Civil Beat.

Rail officials said they found more than 2,000 cracked plastic pads along first first 10 miles of the rail line. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s board of directors wants a more thorough investigation of rail components — and answers about money — in the wake of several quality and safety-related flaws Always Investigating revealed earlier this year. KHON2.

The HART board is taking up a report that points to fractures that have developed in some of the anchors and pads in the guideway and track of the rail system. KITV.

More than two dozen classrooms at Honowai Elementary received air conditioning this year following a campus-wide campaign to reduce energy use. The state Department of Education says the campus received “the most extensive deployment of energy and sustainability efforts.” Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

A steam release is being reported at the Puna Geothermal Venture plant. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii County planners continue to tweak conceptual plans for the proposed Banyan Drive redevelopment project. Tribune-Herald.

Big Island public school students are making strides on Advanced Placement exams, though performance overall still trails behind national averages. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Anaergia Services lost its bid to obtain preferential rates for its biogas and trash conversion programs on Maui when the state Public Utilities Commission issued a ruling Monday in favor of Hawaiian Electric and Maui Electric Cos. Maui News.

As of this morning the County of Maui purchased 267.74 acres of former plantation land for $9.49 million in East Maui, near Peʻahi. Maui News.

The more than decadelong wait for Maui Waena Intermediate School's new classroom building is finally over. Maui News.

Using a century-old map that others before them didn't have, a team of archaeologists has painstakingly unearthed several sections of pohaku, or rock walls, that are helping define the perimeter of the long-buried island of Moku'ula. Maui News.

Kauai

Over 20,000 gallons of sewage sludge overflowed from the Lihue Wastewater Treatment Plant early Thursday morning. Garden Island.

Hanamaulu residents say red dirt from construction site is flowing into their homes; Earthworks Pacific says it is doing all it can to keep dust down. Garden Island

Crystal methamphetamine, legalization of marijuana and plea bargaining were some of the topics that took center stage Thursday in the race for Kauai County prosecuting attorney. Garden Island

There is a new face on the Kauai County Planning Commission. Kanoe Ahuna was sworn in Tuesday. Garden Island.