Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Navy corruption probe widens in Hawaii, state is first to sign onto elements in Paris Accord, Hawaii County property taxes raised, Maui first to ban 'Styrofoam' containers, Honolulu mayor wants plastic bag ban, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

U.S. Navy Cmdr. Dave Kapaun, right, with Republic of Singapore Navy Major Danny Tan, left, and Republic of Singapore Major H .C. Lim at a reception on board the U.S. Navy dock landing ship USS Rushmore, July 4, 2001, Kevin H. Tierney/U.S. Department of Defense
 Navy’s Widening Bribery And Sex Scandal Has Many Hawaii Connections. A former Seventh Fleet commander from Oahu pleads guilty in Honolulu for concealing his relationship with a Malaysian defense contractor. Civil Beat.

A retired U.S. Navy commander in Hawaii charged in a growing corruption scandal pleaded guilty today to lying about his relationship with a Malaysian defense contractor known by the nickname “Fat Leonard.” Associated Press.

Two distinctive missile telemetry ships are in Honolulu Harbor after participating in a first-of-its-kind test intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target high over the Pacific on May 30. Star-Advertiser.

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Gov. David Ige today signed a bill into law to document sea level rise and set strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, aligning the state’s goals with the Paris climate accord. Associated Press.

Hawaii became the first state in the nation to enact portions of the Paris climate agreement into law Tuesday with Gov. David Ige signing Senate Bill 559. Star-Advertiser.

Hawai‘i’s elected officials gathered in Honolulu on Tuesday to show their support for the Paris Climate Accord, following President Trump’s announced withdrawal from the international agreement. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii is the first state in the nation to implement parts of the Paris Climate Agreement. Hawaii Public Radio.

In a show of support for the Paris climate agreement, Gov. David Ige and Hawaii’s county mayors and representatives gathered for the signing of two bills and a mayors’ agreement that support the commitments and goals of the Paris climate accord. KHON2.

Gov. David Ige  and the county mayors gathered Tuesday for the signing of two environmental bills and a mayors' agreement that support the commitments and goals of the Paris climate accord. KITV.

Hawaii's governor said Tuesday that the state has become the first in the nation to enact legislation that implements portions of the Paris climate accord, which the Trump administration rejected last week by pulling the United States out of the multi-nation agreement. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii was the first in the nation to commit to goals outlined in the Paris agreement Tuesday. Garden Island.

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Gov. David Ige gives himself a seven out of 10 for his work since taking office in 2014. Garden Island.

Nearly two-thirds of Hawaii voters who responded to The Civil Beat Poll want the Legislature to pass a bill next year to legalize medical aid in dying for terminally ill adults. Civil Beat.

Hawaii public school students are expected to spend less time taking standardized assessments next school year under efforts announced Tuesday to move away from a testing culture some educators have called toxic. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

The city’s troubled $10 billion rail project faces another critical vote today in the Honolulu City Council. Star-Advertiser.

City council to hold final vote on several tax, fee increases. KHON2.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell today urged the Honolulu City Council to pass a bill banning all plastic bags from retail checkout counters, and threatened to veto any measure that falls short of that. Star-Advertiser.

Get ready drivers: Rates for street parking are poised to go way up starting this summer. Hawaii News Now.

City Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro's request for $75,000 to fund a retrofitted van for his office won't be approved any time soon. Hawaii News Now.

A federal jury found the company and its top manager involved in a deadly 2011 fireworks explosion in a Waikele bunker not guilty today of permit violations for storing and treating hazardous waste. Star-Advertiser.

Medical Marijuana Dispensary To Open Without Any Marijuana. Licensed companies are still waiting for the Department of Health to certify labs to test the products before they can start selling. Civil Beat.

The Kahala Hotel’s New Shoreline Plan Could Reduce Public Beach Access. The high-end resort wants a long-term easement allowing it to hold more weddings and other events that could take up more of the public beach. Civil Beat.

Former Kapolei raceway becomes illegal, potentially toxic, dump site. Hawaii News Now.

Permit numbers for solar systems on Oahu continue to fall, dropping 62 percent in May compared with the same month last year. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority and the Hawaii Convention Center recognize University of Hawaii for securing over $170M in convention business. Pacific Business News.

Sales of single-family homes and condominiums on Oahu rose by double digits in May, as prices posted single-digit gains, according to statistics release Monday by Honolulu real estate firm Locations. Pacific Business News.

Aiming to replicate the water quality impact of oysters on places such as Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay, the state Division of Aquatic Resources on Tuesday announced the expansion of its own oyster-growing experiment with the target of helping to clean up Pearl Harbor. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Property tax rate hikes passed by the Hawaii County Council late Monday pack a wallop for residential and apartment properties, while sparing homeowners and affordable rentals from increases. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Council members spent an entire day, working deep into the night, trying to find the right mix of Big Island property tax increases across the different classes in order to balance the budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year. Big Island Video News.

As Hawaii County considers large increases to the fuel tax, should any of that extra revenue go to help improve substandard private roads? That was a question raised Tuesday as the Hawaii County Council considered a resolution seeking to authorize grants for private roads used as main thoroughfares, such as in large subdivisions, during a Finance Committee meeting. Tribune-Herald.

The Hamakua Soil and Water Conservation District voted Tuesday to rescind the conservation plan for Big Island Dairy and others that weren’t signed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii County Wastewater Division posted warning signs near the Pua sewage pump station and the Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resource Center in Keaukaha after tests with dye suggested repairs made to pipe joints were ineffective. Tribune-Herald.

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. said Tuesday it has paid $10 million to acquire five multi-tenant industrial buildings within the Honokohau Industrial Park, the Honolulu-based company’s first industrial properties on the Big Island. Pacific Business News.

Police have wrapped an internal probe into an Aug. 4, 2016, police pursuit of a stolen vehicle in Hilo that concluded with a two-car crash that resulted in the deaths of a 17-year-old boy and a 20-year-old woman in the stolen car and critical injuries to a 39-year-old woman driving the other vehicle. Tribune-Herald.

Sales of homes on the Big Island rose last month, with the number of condominiums sold jumping by 40 percent, even as prices dropped by 20 percent, compared to the same month last year, according to statistics provided by Hawaii Information Service on behalf of Hawaii Island Realtors. Pacific Business News.

Maui

Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa signed into law Monday a bill banning foam polystyrene food service containers, which include the popular plate lunch container and certain types of coffee cups. Maui News.

Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa signed Bill 127 into law on Monday relating to restricting the use and sale of polystyrene foam containers in Maui County.  The law is set to go into effect on Dec. 31, 2018. Maui Now.

Polystyrene foam containers will be banned on Maui beginning Dec. 31, 2018. Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa signed a bill on Tuesday making the sale and use of polystyrene food containers illegal. Maui is the first Hawaii county to ban foam containers. Associated Press.

County prepares as liability coverage for lifeguards ends. Maui News.

Maui Grown Therapies will hold an open house and a job fair this week to answer questions and recruit employees for the company’s production center and dispensary. Maui News.

Kauai

After five years of renovations, Diamond Resorts International is re-opening The Point at Poipu Resort on Kauai. Pacific Business News.

The median price of a single-family home on Kauai shot up by nearly 50 percent in May, compared to last year, while the number of sales rose by nearly as much, according to statistics provided by Hawaii Information Service on behalf of the Kauai Board of Realtors. Pacific Business News.

Four-hundred-year-old coral fragments in Kauai’s Makauwahi Cave appear to have been left there by a tsunami generated by a magnitude 9 earthquake in the Aleutian Islands, according to a team who recently re-examined the cave. Garden Island.