Thursday, September 14, 2017

Hotel resort fees targeted, University of Hawaii gains 10 points in college rankings, Marco Polo disaster declared, opposition to Coco Palms rebuilding plans, Maui liquor rules changed, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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The state Office of Consumer Protection is investigating resort fees charged by local hotel operators. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s Licensed Medical Cannabis Dispensaries Weigh in On New Banking Solution. Maui Now.

The two operating medical marijuana dispensaries in Hawaii — including one on Maui — and their patients have been operating on a cash-only basis, but a “banking solution” has been forged with a Colorado-based credit union, Gov. David Ige announced Tuesday. Maui News.

The University of Hawaii at Manoa has gained 10 spots on the annual list of the nation's top universities and is now No. 159, according to U.S. News & World Report. Pacific Business News.

Showering Hawaii Officials With Manapua. Gifts to elected and appointed leaders include sticky notes valued at $1, PB&Js at up to $5, and trip to Taiwan worth $5,750. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Starting next month, the city plans to enforce new rules intended to clamp down on vendors who operate as religious groups in city parks to sell everything from T-shirts to potato chips. Star-Advertiser.

A loophole in city law is allowing Waikiki businesses to use wheeled kiosks to promote their merchandise and services rent-free on public sidewalks along Kalakaua Avenue, where traditional retailers pay premium rents. Star-Advertiser.

The sons of two of Honolulu’s most prominent business leaders are being accused of plotting to secretly take over prime Waikiki real estate to make way for a $200-million, 32-story luxury high rise. Civil Beat.

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The U.S. Small Business Administration and Honolulu officials have issued disaster declarations for the fire at the Marco Polo condominium project, opening up low-interest federal loans to Marco Polo owners and tenants in need, Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s office said today. Star-Advertiser.

The U.S. Small Business Administration has issued a disaster declaration for the Marco Polo Apartments, making low-interest federal loans available to residents two months after a fire killed four people and damaged or destroyed dozens of units at the Honolulu condominium. Pacific Business News.

The mayor and U.S. Small Business Administration have issued formal disaster declarations for the Marco Polo highrise fire. Hawaii News Now.

Sept. 14 will be two months since the Marco Polo fire killed three residents and displaced dozens of others still until this day. KHON2.

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The Honolulu City Council is advancing a bill to ban smoking in motor vehicles when a child is present. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Gas won approval Wednesday from the state Public Utilities Commission to develop renewable natural gas from the Honouliuli Wastewater Treatment Plant in Ewa Beach. Star-Advertiser.

State regulators have approved Hawaii Gas' plan to capture and process biogas from the Honouliuli Wastewater Treatment Plant in West Oahu. Pacific Business News.

The state should have offered an autistic child services better tailored to his needs when it proposed moving him to public school rather than continuing to pay his private-school tuition, an appeals court ruled Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

The new day pass kicks in on Oct. 1. The thing is you can only buy them from the bus driver. KITV.

Police closed the Koko Head entrance to Ala Moana Regional Park today because of a sink hole. Star-Advertiser.

Target is planning to hire 800 seasonal employees for its locations on Oahu. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

The Hawaii County Water Board announced Wednesday the first six members of its Permitted Action Group, an ad hoc committee the board is spearheading to investigate the widespread failure of deep well equipment across North Kona. West Hawaii Today.

Mayor Harry Kim said it probably will be January before the county is ready to take the next step in its efforts to safely house Hilo’s homeless — while at the same time cleaning up areas frequented by homeless individuals and families. Tribune-Herald.

New sensors will help monitor activity as scientists say Mauna Loa ‘will erupt again’ KHON2.

Japan Airlines will celebrate a new service launch between Kona International Airport and Tokyo on September 15. Big Island Video News.

On Hawaii island, the mother of “Peter Boy” Kema is heading back to court Thursday. KHON2.

On Sunday, the latest six-member crew to help show how a journey to Mars might work will step into Mauna Loa’s cool, fresh air after spending eight months confined in a dome-like tent there. Star-Advertiser.

Maui

The Maui County Liquor Control Commission approved streamlined changes proposed by County Council Member Yuki Lei Sugimura for single-event liquor license applications for nonprofits Wednesday after months of protests and dozens of testifiers at the David K. Trask Jr. Building in Wailuku. Maui News.

The Maui Police Department has launched a sexual assault investigation into one of its own. The high-ranking officer is accused of assaulting one of his female sergeants. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

High levels of bacteria have been found in the water at Anahola Bay, according to a state Department of Health Wednesday beach advisory. Garden Island.

There are big plans afoot for famous Coco Palms resort — but not everyone's on board. In its heyday, Coco Palms resort on Kauai was a favorite spot for stars and other big names. Hawaii News Now.