Thursday, October 6, 2016

Vehicle tax could be based on mileage, top-performing schools announced, no confidence in Honolulu fire chief, religious beliefs differ on Mauna Kea, Kauai to leave community center alone after outcry, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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The more than 1 million Hawaii drivers who get annual vehicle inspections could soon receive mock bills comparing what they pay in state fuel taxes to what they would pay if taxed on the miles they drive instead. Star-Advertiser.

The state's proposal to get rid of the gas tax used to fund road repairs in favor a mileage-based user fee is needed to prepare for a future with far fewer gas-powered vehicles on the roads, officials said Wednesday. Hawaii News Now.

The state’s top-performing public schools were announced Wednesday by the Department of Education, based on the latest round of results on the school accountability system known as Strive HI. Star-Advertiser.

Nearly 1 in 5 Hawaii public high school students missed 15 days or more last school year and the figure topped 40 percent at some campuses, newly released academic performance metrics show. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii media outlets banded together this week to protest being shut out of a meeting between commercial fishing vessel owners and government officials to discuss concerns about the treatment of foreign crew members who work on U.S. vessels. Civil Beat.

There’s A Big Mess At The New Papahanaumokuakea Monument. State and federal officials are working to clean up leaking fuel, heavy equipment and other debris spilled into the water at Kure Atoll. Civil Beat.

The first aerial survey of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch shows that the amount of debris swirling in the North Pacific has been “heavily underestimated,” the expedition group said. HuffPost Hawaii.

Three-quarters of a century after he was killed during the surprise Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the remains of a young Navy sailor finally are heading home to Kansas. Associated Press.

Oahu

With a firefighter training death earlier this year and another firefighter injured after falling out of a helicopter rescue basket last month, the firefighters union says Honolulu Fire Chief Manuel Neves fails to place firefighter safety first and should be fired. Star-Advertiser.

Why It’s So Hard To Find Serious Candidates For City Prosecutor. Even one of Honolulu’s former top prosecutors won’t be eligible to run for his old job because of city rules that limit who can run. Civil Beat.

The Honolulu City Council voted Wednesday to approve plans for the 36-story Mana‘olana condominium-hotel tower at Atkinson Drive and Kapiolani Boulevard. Star-Advertiser.

Starting tonight, Kakaako Waterfront Park — home to a persistent homeless population of about 50 people — will close four hours earlier indefinitely to repair an unknown number of light poles that have been vandalized to gain access to electrical power. Star-Advertiser.

The City and County of Honolulu sold about $379 million of tax-exempt and taxable general obligation bonds on Wednesday that will be used to refinance existing debt and finance new capital improvement projects and equipment. Star-Advertiser.

A Hawaii medical marijuana company is opening in the former Krazy Karaoke space in Honolulu, Pacific Business News has learned.

Waimanalo residents up in arms over proposed traffic light. KITV.


Hawaii

The Maunakea Management Board is asking its Native Hawaiian advisory group to take another look at proposed rules for cultural practices after hearing objections from some followers of the Hawaiian religion. Tribune-Herald.

It took four years, but the mayor finally celebrates the official opening of the new Kaʻū District Gym and Shelter. Big Island Video News.

Despite outreach effort, some Ironman athletes say Zika not on mind. West Hawaii Today.

After more than a year of development, the upper Puna connectivity plan was presented to the Hawaii County Council’s Committee on Public Works and Parks and Recreation during its Tuesday meeting. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company is closing operations by the end of the year. The legacy of sugar has touched many lives in Hawai‘i. Before the final harvest is in, we’re hearing from a variety of voices. Hawaii Public Radio.

For centuries, traditional Hawaiian chants have warned about an increased risk of shark bites in the fall, when the wiliwili tree blooms. According to the DLNR Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR), that warning is still appropriate. Maui Watch.

Those of you who enjoy looking at musty old Hawaii Land Court applications from the comfort of your own home are in luck: Thanks to years of diligent work from the North Beach West Maui Benefit Fund, a huge trove of old West Maui Land Court applications is now online–all free to read and download. MauiTime.

Major parts of a wind turbine at the 21-megawatt Auwahi Wind project at the Ulupalakua Ranch on Maui separated from the tower structure and fell to the ground, shutting down the entire project, a spokeswoman for the owner of the wind farm confirmed to Pacific Business News.

Kauai

Public outcry and financial constraints led the county on Wednesday to end plans to convert the Kapaa Neighborhood Center into a police substation and move the center to the Kapaa Armory. Garden Island.

The Kauai County Council unanimously voted to kill a resolution that proposed changes to Waikomo Road Wednesday. Garden Island.