Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Honolulu first big city to ban pedestrian cellphone use, Huckabee rallies GOP, state fixes FEMA flood problems, Honolulu seeks tighter liquor laws, police chief interviews continue, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Cellphones in Waikiki © 2017 All Hawaii News
Crossing the street? Whatever you do, don't look at your phone. Starting Wednesday, pedestrians could be fined for crossing a street on Oahu while looking at a cell phone or other electronic device. City officials say Honolulu is the first major city in the nation to enact this type of ban. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu makes looking at electronic devices while crossing streets, highways illegal. A new city ordinance makes it illegal for pedestrians to look at electronic devices while crossing the street. The law goes into effect on Wednesday. KHON2.

Former presidential candidate rallies to revive Republican spirit in Hawaii. Speaking to a crowd of about 500 guests at the Koolau Ballrooms Tuesday night, former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee hoped to reignite the spirit of Hawaii's Republican Party. Hawaii News Now.

FEMA says Hawaii no longer at risk of suspension from National Flood Insurance Program. In April 2016, FEMA warned the state that Hawaii Senate Bill 586, which exempted buildings on agriculture lands from county zoning laws, prevented Hawaiian counties from being fully compliant with the agency’s NFIP requirements. Pacific Business News.

Honolulu City Councilmembers are expected to request the state legislature pass measures to toughen liquor laws next session. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaiian Electric Cos. have taken the next step toward achieving Hawaii's clean energy goal by submitting paperwork with state regulators for the process of soliciting new renewable energy proposals. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

The state plans to reopen Kewalo Basin Park, the two Gateway Parks and the Point Panic area of Kakaako Waterfront Park on Monday, three weeks after clearing the parks of large homeless encampments. Star-Advertiser.

Two Kakaako parks could reopen next week, more work needed at Waterfront. KHON2.

Honolulu Council Committee Shoots Down Islandwide Sit-Lie Ban. The panel tinkered with homelessness proposals, shifting from the concept of safe zones to tiny homes. Civil Beat.

How Domestic Violence Can Lead To Homelessness. The link is clear but the connection is often overlooked by policymakers trying to end homelessness. Civil Beat.

Honolulu police suspect teenage assailants were behind three recent high-profile violent crimes in Waikiki, where hundreds of teens live on the streets. Star-Advertiser.

Officer, ex-prosecutor expect more arrests in Kealoha case. The officer who last month publicly alleged widespread corruption within the Honolulu Police Department said Tuesday that he and his colleagues are thrilled that federal authorities have charged several current and former officers with criminal wrongdoing and are pursuing more leads in an investigation that has rocked Hawaii’s law enforcement community. Star-Advertiser.

Covert Honolulu Police Unit Has Long History Of Troubles. The CIU is again under scrutiny, with five officers recently arrested as part of a federal investigation into police corruption. Civil Beat.

Attorney: 3 Honolulu police commissioners should step down. An attorney who helped convinced federal authorities to investigate former Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha is calling for a major overhaul at the Honolulu Police Commission. Associated Press.

High Court Rejects Media Complaint About Police Commission Secrecy. The legal challenge was made to ensure that the public has access to hearings for Honolulu cops who want taxpayer help. Civil Beat.

Three police chief finalists appear before commission on second day of interviews. Interviews continued Tuesday with three more candidates vying to lead the state’s largest police department. KHON2.

Hunt for the next police chief continues as finalists endure interview round. Three more finalists vying for the position of Honolulu's next police chief were grilled by the Honolulu Police Commission Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.

Chief of Police interviews now in progress; will continue through Wednesday. KITV.

Four proposals aimed at resolving issues tied to bed-and-breakfast establishments and other transient vacation rentals go before the Honolulu City Council’s Zoning and Housing Committee on Thursday. Star-Advertiser.


New city proposals to legalize certain vacation rentals, and crackdown on scofflaws. KITV.

Honolulu's small business owners not happy with local government, survey says. Honolulu earned an F in the following three categories: employment, labor and hiring regulations; licensing regulations; and tax regulations. Pacific Business News.

Hanauma Bay supporters mark 50 years of protection. Today nearly 1 million people a year are drawn to the spectacular East Oahu bay, a coastal volcanic crater that has become the island’s premier snorkeling destination. Star-Advertiser.

Lawsuit alleges negligence in 2016 death of HFD firefighter. The son of a Honolulu firefighter who died after a training accident in 2016 has filed a lawsuit against the city. Hawaii News Now.

Marco Polo building open for possible plaintiffs, defendants. The Marco Polo condo building in which a July fire killed four people has been opened to numerous people who might file lawsuits, potential defendants such as product manufacturers and their insurers, and fire experts from across the nation. Associated Press

Chinatown building’s renovation helps preserve affordable rentals. An extreme home makeover that included removing a gambling den at a low-income apartment complex on city land in Honolulu is being celebrated today as part of a $13 million project to preserve affordable housing. Star-Advertiser.

First homeowners begin moving into Kakaako tower. Keauhou Place, a 423-unit condominium tower, opened its doors to an initial batch of 57 homeowners who were scheduled to pick up their keys Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu police are investigating the death of a 2-year-old girl who allegedly had boiling water poured on her in August while staying on base with her Scho­field Barracks father, relatives of the girl and officials said. Star-Advertiser

Honolulu construction company gets $10M task order for work at Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

State eyes $42K fine for reef damage. The state Land Board will consider fining a boat tour operator $42,165 for damage done to the historic Punaluu Wharf. Tribune-Herald.

The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands met with the community in Honomū Gym on Monday evening, to talk about a plan to create a the first-of-its-kind, Subsistence Agriculture Homestead Lease on 766 acres of land above town. Big Island Video News.

The Hawaii County Board of Ethics dismissed two more complaints filed by North Kohala resident Lanric Hyland during a meeting in Hilo on Monday, finding them to be frivolous and prompting further discussion on the board’s rules of procedure for handling such complaints. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii island Circuit Court Judge Greg Nakamura formally declared Peter “Peter Boy” Kema Jr. to be dead today in a decision that clears the way for a lawsuit by Kema’s siblings in one of Hawaii’s most infamous child abuse cases. Star-Advertiser.

Jaylin Kema, the mother of Peter Kema Jr., also known as “Peter Boy,” was re-sentenced Tuesday to 10 years of probation after she violated her probation on a manslaughter charge earlier this year. Tribune-Herald.

U.S. Coast Guard crews are monitoring a local company’s floating island that appeared to be listing Tuesday in Kailua Bay following foul weather that lashed the Big Island. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Tsutsui move opens up mayoral race. Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui’s announcement that he is not running for Maui County mayor in 2018 brought reactions of surprise, relief and understanding from those who have announced their intentions to seek the county’s top office. Maui News.

Public hearings on proposed amendments to the State Commission on Water Resource Management administrative rules pertaining to water use, wells, and stream diversion works will be held island-wide with the first meeting taking place in Wailuku on Oct. 30. Maui Now.

Thousands of lightning strikes and 60 mph wind gusts downed power lines and zapped Maui Electric Co. systems early Tuesday morning causing a countywide power outage that shut down businesses, flooded homes and caused traffic jams and flight delays and cancellations. Maui News.

Teen starts petition to save Barnes & Noble. West Maui bookstore to close at the end of the year. Maui News.

Meeting on Kanaio site inspection set for Nov. 1. Maui News.

Kauai

Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. is announcing his candidacy for higher office today on Oahu, according to a press release from the 2018 Carvalho campaign. While Carvalho is expected to throw his hat into the running for Hawaii governor, some speculate he might run for lieutenant governor. Garden Island.

A mediated settlement, approved by the Hawaii Commission on Water Resource Management in April, to immediately restore continuous flows in West Kauai’s Waimea River, is the subject of a video mini-documentary produced by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Garden Island.

Help wanted to rid Kilauea River of invasives. Salvinia hails from Brazil and is the most invasive species in Hawaii. Garden Island.