Friday, October 27, 2017

Navy rescues Honolulu women after months lost at sea, homegrown pot tainted, audit says burning Honolulu recyclables cheaper than recycling them, vacation rentals irk neighbors, Kauai mayor wannabes line up, rail begins airport leg, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy U.S. Navy
Women lost at sea rescued, courtesy U.S. Navy
After five months adrift, two women are saved by the U.S. Navy. Two Honolulu women and their dogs survived powerful storms, shark attacks and bouts of hopelessness while drifting at sea for five months aboard a 50-foot sailboat that broke down during their sail from Hawaii to Tahiti. Star-Advertiser.

courtesy U.S. Navy
U.S. Navy
Two Honolulu women and their dogs have been rescued after being lost at sea for months while trying to sail from Hawaii to Tahiti. Associated Press.

Two Hawaii women and their dogs have been rescued after spending months lost at sea in the Pacific Ocean. The pair, Jennifer Appel and Tasha Fuiava, survived off of water purifiers and a year’s worth of dry food, like pasta and oatmeal. Hawaii News Now.

The U.S. Navy released a video of its recent rescue at sea. A pair of Hawaii women and their dogs were stuck on board their sailboat in the Pacific Ocean. KITV.

Growth in visitor numbers outpaces spending. Arrivals last month increased 5 percent year-over-year to 701,833 visitors, and spending rose to $1.2 billion — up nearly 2 percent from September 2016, according to preliminary statistics released Thursday by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Star-Advertiser.

Visitor spending increased 7.1 percent to a total of $12.56 billion through the third quarter of 2017 in Hawaii, according to preliminary statistics released Thursday by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Pacific Business News.

Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands spent a total of $12.5 billion in the first three quarters of 2017, an increase of 7.1 percent compared to the same period last year, according to preliminary statistics released Thursday by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Garden Island.

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Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen is expected to arrive today for a short visit on her first official trip to Hawaii on what is technically labeled a “transit.”  Star-Advertiser.

Vigilance required for public pensions to reach full funding. 9.4 percent of Hawaii residents are part of the state Employees’ Retirement System. Maui News.

Cannabis Curriculum a Grassroots Effort in Hawaii. The number of patients registered under Hawai’i’s medical cannabis program has grown by 54 percent since 2015. Hawaii Public Radio.

Most homegrown marijuana tainted, lab reports. Most of the homegrown pakalolo tested by Hawaii’s first medical marijuana laboratory is tainted with pesticides and other dangerous contaminants. Star-Advertiser.

Human remains stolen from burial caves in Hawaii more than a century ago are finally returning to their resting place. Hawaii News Now.

High Surf Warning issued as waves of 35 feet forecast. A High Surf Warning has been issued for north- and west-facing shores of Oahu, Niihau, Kauai and Molokai, and north-facing shores of Maui. Hawaii News Now.

Southwest Airlines officials say starting service to Hawaii is now their primary focus, interisland flying is being seriously considered and they don’t plan on using red-eye flights from the mainland to the islands. Star-Advertiser.

Island Air filled two key employment positions Thursday, even as its long-term fate remains up in the air in federal Bankruptcy Court. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Audit: Honolulu Could Save Millions By Burning Recyclables For Energy. Sorting and selling recyclables hauled away in blue bins no longer makes economic sense, the audit found. Civil Beat.

Auditor urges city to get some cash for its trash. Many of the recyclables collected in Honolulu residents’ blue bins could eventually wind up at the city’s HPOWER plant in Kapolei instead of overseas, based on the recommendations of a new city auditor’s report. Star-Advertiser.

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After hearing more than four hours of sometimes emotional testimony from supporters and detractors of vacation rentals, the City Council Zoning and Housing Committee on Thursday voted to advance four proposals aimed at addressing the complicated issue. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu City Council is once again trying to get control of the growing vacation rental industry and crack down on illegal units. Hawaii News Now.

A battle over vacation rentals and illegal bed-and-breakfasts is brewing before the city council. On Thursday, members of the Committee on Zoning and Housing took up four resolutions that addressed the issue. KHON2.

Operators, neighbors clash over plans to curb vacation rentals. The online booking platforms for vacation rentals have created issues in neighborhoods no one ever expected. KITV.

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First, it was a law that bans lying down on city sidewalks. Now a city councilman wants to take it a step further, by making it illegal for people to lie down at bus stops. KHON2.

HPD Corruption Case: Who Is Alison Lee Wong? The feds say Honolulu prosecutor Katherine Kealoha used the alias of “Alison Lee Wong” to help carry out alleged crimes. Civil Beat.

Years in the making: How prosecutors built their case against the Kealohas. It's the biggest abuse of power case in modern Hawaii history. Hawaii News Now.

Former Honolulu Prosecutor Peter Carlisle: Fed's Case Against the Kealohas Solid. Honolulu’s former police chief and his city deputy prosecutor wife pleaded not guilty to federal charges Friday. Hawaii Public Radio.

Rail work kicks off airport leg. The joint venture Shimmick, Traylor and Granite is being paid $875 million to build Phase 3 of the 20-mile Honolulu rail line. Hawaii News Now.

Rail pillars are going up for the airport section of Honolulu's Rail Transit Project. Contractors used heavy machinery to drill its first holes for the 5-plus mile stretch of that phase of the project, which runs from Aloha Stadium to Middle Street. KITV.

Star-Advertiser Employees Rally To Protest Layoffs. More than 30 newsroom staffers -- about a quarter of the staff -- have lost their jobs at Hawaii’s biggest newspaper in the past year amid ongoing contract negotiations. Civil Beat.

A restaurant in the Shirokiya Japan Village Walk at Ala Moana Center was shut down for interfering with a state Department of Health inspection to follow up on food safety violations. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Department of Health Sanitation Branch has posted a red “closed” placard at Mazesoba Ono-ya inside Ala Moana Center for refusing to cooperate during a follow-up health inspection to correct eight outstanding critical food safety violations. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Construction continues on the former Sports Authority storefront at Prince Kuhio Plaza, with new tenants — T.J. Maxx and Petco — expected to open early next year, according to the mall. Tribune-Herald.

Lava Inundation Zones Mapped On Mauna Loa. Mauna Loa is not erupting, but scientists with the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory are watching it closely. Big Island Video News.

Kua O Ka La students learning about ‘what’s happening in their ocean’ by participating in eDNA study. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Maui Police Officer Arrested for Domestic Abuse. Maui police responded to a Kahului residence on Tuesday night after receiving a call for a domestic violence complaint involving a 26-year-old female and an off-duty Maui Police Department officer. Maui Now.

State pension system still considering golf course development. As questions circled around plans for the Kaanapali Golf Course, the executive director of the state Employees’ Retirement System, which owns the golf course, said it’s too early to tell how much the project will cost and whether it will prove beneficial for the agency and the community. Maui News.

Kauai


Kauai County Department of Parks and Recreation director announces run for mayor. Kauai’s Lenny Rapozo announced Thursday that he’ll be entering the race for county mayor. Hawaii News Now.

Gov. David Ige covered a lot of ground in his 40-minute talk Thursday morning at the Lihue Business Association. Garden Island.

State Rep. Andria Tupola, recently chosen as House Minority Leader, will be at Lihue United Church Parish 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday. Tupola is running for governor. Garden Island.

The Department of Water recently held a blessing ceremony to commence the Koloa Well 16 A and 16 B Site and Building Improvements Project in Koloa. Garden Island.