Monday, June 12, 2017

Green energy money may go to schools, donated swim gear stolen from soldiers, Waikiki fireworks revived, 47 want to be Honolulu zookeeper, grant award questioned, Maui reconsiders liquor law, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Wondering if your favorite beach is safe for a swim? You’ll know a lot sooner now that the state is implementing new public notification procedures that require signs posted as soon as test results show the water quality does not reach safety standards. West Hawaii Today.

The state might pull one-third of the money from its stagnant $150 million green energy loan program to help lower electrical bills at Hawaii’s public schools. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers this year approved a grant worth hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to a privately owned Hawaii island well-drilling company through a process usually used to fund nonprofit social service organizations, and some lawmakers are wondering why. Star-Advertiser.

Governor to explore possibility of special session for rail. KHON2.

VIDEO: Officials Testify On Hawaii Missile Defeat Programs. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii had the eighth-fastest growing solar market in the United States in the first quarter of 2017, adding 76.4 megawatts of solar capacity between January and March, according to a new report. Pacific Business News.

XLR8UH, the University of Hawaii’s accelerator program, was named one of the nation's best startup accelerators of 2017. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

The latest report card shows that homeless people placed into market-rate apartments through the city’s Housing First program continue to do better than their counterparts on the street — and are far less likely to use drugs and alcohol, get arrested or rely on hospital emergency rooms. Star-Advertiser.

Demand for farm land is so great in Hawaii, Aloun Farms is trying to speed up its sale of acres in Central Oahu. Hawaii Public Radio.

The Sorry State Of Many Honolulu Parks. Millions of dollars have been spent on Oahu parks in the past decade, but some have fared better than others. Civil Beat.

Members of the state Land Use Commission last month threw the question of keeping open Oahu’s only public landfill back to the Honolulu Planning Commission to clear up technical errors, but not before criticizing city officials for foot-dragging. Star-Advertiser.

The city received applications from 47 people hoping to be the next director of the Honolulu Zoo, but only 10 were deemed qualified, city Human Resources Director Carolee Kubo said Friday. Star-Advertiser.

The city is moving forward on plans to shore up a portion of the crumbling sea wall that protects Kapiolani Park between the Queen’s Surf groin and the Waikiki Aquarium. Star-Advertiser.

Twenty-five years of weekly fireworks in Waikiki almost came to an indefinite end Friday after a disagreement over how much money the show’s organizer should pay for impeding public use of the beach fronting Hilton Hawaiian Village during the event. Star-Advertiser.

Kaimuki High School is the latest-starting public school in Hawaii, and according to a preliminary study, students there think the later morning bell may make for better health and academic performance. Civil Beat.

Supporters of LGBT rights gathered at the state capitol on Sunday for the Honolulu Equality March for Unity and Pride. Hawaii News Now.

Survey Of Homeless Kids To Include Sexual Orientation Information. A national survey found 40 percent of homeless youths identify as LGBTQ. Service providers will soon have data for Oahu. Civil Beat.

After a man allegedly damaged glass doors at Iolani Palace late May, appraisers said the price tag of the doors is $375,000. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Members of a nonprofit group were disheartened over the theft of swim gear donated to soldiers, training on the Big Island, for their rest and relaxation. West Hawaii Today.

Two Hilo colleges are divided over stone altars, or ahu, with inverted Hawaii flags constructed on campuses by students. Associated Press.

Hilo colleges are taking different approaches to two on-campus ahu — or stone altars — which a student group claims it constructed to bring attention to “124 years of genocide continuing on the Hawaiian community.” Tribune-Herald.

Entries for a lottery that will determine the waiting list order for two local affordable housing projects are being accepted online through June 14. The lottery is scheduled for June 20. West Hawaii Today.

The days of Pagoda Hilo Bay Hotel — formerly known as Uncle Billy’s Hilo Bay Hotel — are coming to an end. Tribune-Herald.

A Hawaii island lava tour boat operator was fined $15,000 Friday for three violations of state boating rules. Star-Advertiser.

Though the enthusiasm and passion for getting involved in Hawaii’s young hemp industry was on display during Saturday’s conference, many in attendance also expressed concern about potential stumbling blocks in the path. Tribune-Herald.

Doctors at the Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu have begun making virtual rounds to treat the most critical intensive care patients on Hawaii island. Star-Advertiser.

Graham Ellis, who made headlines this week after he was picked up by the Department of Homeland Security and subsequently given 45 days to depart the country voluntarily, will leave a few loose ends on Hawaii Island when he returns to England on July 20. West Hawaii Today.

Turtle monitoring efforts ramp up: Nesting season is a busy time for researchers. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Maui Liquor Commission will meet on July 12 for a public hearing to consider proposed changes to the existing rules that were implemented in February. Maui Now.

Simply put, there isn’t enough federal and state money to pay for all of Maui County’s highway maintenance and expansion needs — now projected to cost $3.1 billion through 2035, members of the Maui Metropolitan Planning Organization heard last week. Maui News.

Maui Police Department Chief Tivoli Faaumu has received high marks in all categories in his annual review and evaluation by the Maui Police Commission. Maui News.

Chemical farming’s impacts on Maui’s environment and the public will be the topic of discussion at a gathering at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Paia Community Center. Maui News.

Median prices for single-family houses and condominiums on Maui increased by double-digit percentages in May as low inventory prompted buyers to snap up properties at a rapid pace. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai

The Kauai County Council is expected to discuss several requests from the county to apply for grants for services at its meeting Wednesday beginning at 8:30 a.m. at the Historic County Building. Garden Island.

The environmental law group Earthjustice is asking for better survey methods for finding marine mammals in target areas for military weapons testing around Kauai. Garden Island.

After almost 20 years since legalization, medical marijuana patients on Kauai may be able to purchase state-approved cannibas by October. Garden Island.

County cemeteries are filling up. KHHA president is seeking additional land for Kekaha Hawaiian Cemetery. Garden Island.

Waioli Corporation gets $550,000 to build interactive park featuring Hawaii locomotives. Garden Island.