Thursday, June 1, 2017

Japan Airlines returns to Kona, Honolulu Mayor Caldwell unpopular in poll, Kauai cuts auditor funds to balance $202M budget, murderers among work-release inmates, Portlock owner wants $2M for surf spot access, Big Island testifiers oppose gas tax hike, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy photo
Ige, state and Japan Airlines officials, courtesy photo
Japan Airlines will resume daily nonstop service between Tokyo’s Narita International Airport and Kona International Airport at Keahole this fall — a move that is expected to add millions of dollars to the state’s economy and shore up Kona’s status as an international port of entry. Star-Advertiser.

Japan Airlines will resume nonstop flights between Tokyo and the Kona airport on Hawaii Island this fall after a seven-year absence, providing $84.2 million in annual visitor spending. Pacific Business News.

Direct flights from Japan to Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole will be re-established after a seven-year absence. West Hawaii Today.

The Federal Aviation Administration is providing more than $10 million in federal funding to two of Hawaii's airports to enhance operations and runway safety. The two airports that will receive the money are Kahului Airport on Maui and Hilo International Airport on the Big Island. Pacific Business News.

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency released video footage today of the successful intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target during a test over the Pacific Tuesday, the agency said. Star-Advertiser.

Sentencing set for Navy officer formerly stationed in Hawaii who shared military secrets. Associated Press.

Convicted murderers are among the inmates who are out in the community working while finishing their sentence. KHON2.

The state has received a $2.5 million payment from Volkswagen as part of a national settlement with the automaker. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii will receive a direct payment of $2.5 million from Volkswagen as part of a multi-state settlement, state Attorney General Doug Chin and state Office of Consumer Protection Executive Director Stephen Levins said on Wednesday. Pacific Business News.

The 2017 Central Pacific hurricane season gets underway today. West Hawaii Today.

The state’s largest carrier of interisland ocean cargo extended a more than four-year stretch of fairly level delivery volumes with roughly flat first-quarter results. Star-Advertiser.

Young Brothers, Ltd.’s intrastate cargo volumes between Honolulu and six Neighbor Island ports were flat for the first quarter of 2017, up only 0.2 percent compared to the same period in 2016, according to the company’s quarterly cargo volume report. Pacific Business News.

The Hawaii Bankers Association elected its officers for the new fiscal year, beginning Thursday. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

In Hawaii, an island oasis for Democrats, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell is about as popular as Republican President Donald Trump. And it looks like Caldwell might have the rail project to blame for it. Civil Beat.

Former U.S. Rep. Mark Takai was remembered Wednesday as a “true Pacific warrior, a true patriot and a true statesman” at a ceremony renaming the Pacific Warfighting Center on Ford Island in his name. Star-Advertiser.

The owner of a gate blocking access to a lane that leads to a popular Portlock beach estimates the city would need to pay more than $2 million to condemn the lane to keep it open. Star-Advertiser.

Corals Are Dying At Hawaii’s Most Popular Snorkeling Spot. Climate change is heating the ocean and causing stronger and longer coral bleaching events at Hanauma Bay. Civil Beat.

A state board overseeing real estate development rules in Kakaako decided Wednesday to take more time to analyze proposed changes to a long list of affordable-housing production requirements. Star-Advertiser.

The decades-long erosion of the shoreline just outside the city’s Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant leaves the facility’s outfall pipeline in a precarious situation where “failure or damage to the outfall could have catastrophic health, environmental and economic consequences,” according to an environmental report made public by the city last month. Star-Advertiser.

The Department of Health's Clean Water Branch is advising the public to avoid waters near a Punaluu stream due to a contamination alert. Hawaii News Now.

In an effort to accommodate the growth of Waianae High School’s Searider Productions, the state Department of Education plans to expand the program’s facilities into a full-fledged complex. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Almost every one of the more than dozen residents addressing the County Council at a public hearing Wednesday on a gas tax increase was opposed to the idea. West Hawaii Today.

Roughly twenty Hawaii Island residents testified Wednesday at a public hearing on a possible series of fuel tax increases on the Big Island. Big Island Video News.

Smuggled into US as a teen, respected Kona farmer now faces deportation to Mexico. Hawaii News Now.

Several years ago, Hawai'i County Prosecutor Mitch Roth started a program on the east side of the Big Island aimed at working with young offenders. It links actions and consequences – and it’s been so successful he wants to start a similar program on the west side. Hawaii Public Radio.

A group of 25 conservation managers, cultural practictioners and government representatives in the Kulani tract of the Pu‘u Maka‘ala Natural Area Reserve for a ceremony to offer the Hawaii creeper a boost: its traditional name, rediscovered after decades. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Maui County Liquor Commission may hear public comments this month about how the Department of Liquor Control processes permits for one-day fundraising events, while commission action on repealing controversial rules changes has been put off until July at the earliest. Maui News.

Kahului Airport and Hilo International Airport will receive over $10 million in federal funds from the Federal Aviation Administration to enhance airport operations and runway safety on Maui and the Big Island of Hawaiʻi. Maui Now.

Maui’s Kapalua Bay Beach in West Maui earned the number 2 spot on Dr. Stephen P Leatherman’s 27th Annual Top 10 Beach List. Maui Now.

South Maui rescue tubes ready. Maui News.

Hawksbill and green (honu) sea turtles begin their 2017 nesting season along Maui beaches in June. Maui Now.

Kauai

Auditor’s office, overtime cut from spending plan. The Kauai County Council unanimously approved a $201.5 million budget for fiscal year 2017-2018 Wednesday. Garden Island.

A Kauai judge has ruled in favor of a Southside resident after a decade’s long tussle over a new subdivision. Judge Kathleen Watanabe recently ruled that the state, County of Kauai and the Eric A. Knudsen Trust violated laws preserving and protecting Hawaiian rights and cultural resources when the developer’s Village at Poipu Phase One subdivision was approved in 2009, according to a release from the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation. Garden Island.

Two of Kauai’s endangered seabird species are in peril, according to a study released Wednesday by the Kauai Endangered Seabird Recovery Project. Garden Island.