Monday, November 13, 2017

Drier climate threatens Hawaii forest birds, Honolulu police conquering rape kit backlog, Damien band director fired over girl's sex assault allegations, telescopes pro and con, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Iiwi PC:Lucas Behnke USGS
Drier climate seen as threat to isle forest birds. A new study by U.S. Forest Service researchers suggests that the impact of climate-related changes on native Hawaiian birds may be even more substantial than previously understood. Star-Advertiser.

Immigrants add billions to Hawaii’s economy, report says. As Hawaii continues to be a thorn in the side for President Donald Trump and his immigration policies, a new report underscores how much immigrants mean to the islands. Star-Advertiser.

GOP tax plan would hit isle taxpayers hard. The evolving picture of the Republicans’ proposed changes to the federal tax code does not bode well for many of Hawaii’s taxpayers, with lawmakers considering reducing or even abolishing some deductions that are particularly important to local tax filers. Star-Advertiser.

As Republicans on Capitol Hill refine their plans on tax reform, one point under consideration is eliminating a tax credit for electric vehicles. And that would be likely to have a broad impact here in Hawaii. Hawaii Public Radio.

The plaintiffs in a long-running class-action lawsuit over long waits for Department of Hawaiian Home Lands homestead lots have scored what they consider another crucial victory in court. Star-Advertiser.

Isle homeless advocates cite gains in cutting numbers needing shelter. Despite lingering encampments across the state, social workers and state and city officials insist Hawaii is making progress reducing the nation’s highest per capita rate of homelessness. Star-Advertiser.

Allegiant Air ends service to Hawaii. The discount carrier, which at one time served Hawaii on 10 routes from nine mainland cities, quietly ended its lone remaining service with a flight from Honolulu to Las Vegas on Oct. 28. Star-Advertiser.

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. has created a new image for its nickname, A&B, to go along with its new structure as a real estate investment trust. Star-Advertiser.

Commentary: Congressional race will reveal Democratic Party’s divide and future course. The uncertainty and disunity within the dominant Hawaii Democratic Party is showing up as the race to replace U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa in Hawaii’s 1st Congressional District begins. Star-Advertiser.

Commentary: Why Would Anyone Want To Run For Congress? Maybe because it pays well, there are lots of perks and it’s possible — just possible — to do some good. Civil Beat.

Oahu

The Honolulu Police Department says that by the end of November it will clear a backlog of nearly 1,400 sexual assault evidence kits, some dating back more than two decades, and will send out all of about 200 more recent kits in the department’s possession for testing by the end of the year. Star-Advertiser.

Recycle Or Incinerate? The Battle Of The Blue Bins. Burning more discards could save money as recycling gets more expensive, but environmentalists say it’s the cost of caring for the planet. Civil Beat.

"Complete Streets" solutions needed for Honolulu's urban core. Aiming to make the streets of Honolulu's urban core safer, the city is turning to the community for their input. KITV.

City invites community input on Complete Streets solutions. The city wants to hear from you on how to make streets safer. KHON2.

UH Cancer Center projects an end to budget deficit. The University of Hawaii Cancer Center is projecting a balanced budget this year for the first time since opening its $130 million Kakaako facility in 2013. Star-Advertiser.

Uber's food delivery platform UberEATS to launch in Hawaii this month. Ridesharing platform Uber confirmed to Pacific Business News that it will launch its food delivery service program, UberEATS, in Honolulu on Nov. 15. Pacific Business News.

Former Damien Memorial band director shocked by sexual assault charges. The Damien Memorial School band director who lost his job after his arrest last week for investigation of sexually assaulting a girl says he is stunned by the charges.Star-Advertiser.

Damien Memorial School band director fired after being charged with sexual assault. The president and CEO of Damien Memorial School released a statement Sunday that the band director has been fired after being arrested and charged on eight counts of sexual assault. KITV.

Tribute marks 100th anniversary of Queen Liliuokalani's death. A large crowd marked the 100th anniversary of the death of Hawaii's last reigning monarch. The tribute to Queen Liliuokalani took place in front of the statue of the beloved monarch near Iolani Palace. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

One mauna, many perspectives: Native Hawaiians discuss spiritual, cultural connections to Maunakea. Before it became known as the world’s premier place for astronomy, Maunakea had long inspired reverence. Tribune-Herald.

Special section: Celebrating 50 years of astronomy on Maunakea. Tribune-Herald.

Army seeks public comment on Pohakuloa cultural resources. The U.S. Army Garrison, Pohakuloa, is seeking public comments on its plan to manage cultural resources on its 132,000-acre training site tucked in the saddle between Maunakea and Mauna Loa. West Hawaii Today.

The East Hawaii Regional Board of Directors of Hawaii Health Systems Corp. showed Puna community members Thursday night that the district’s health care is one of its top priorities. Tribune-Herald.

The ongoing legal dispute between Big Island Dog Rescue and Hawaii Island Humane Society showed little signs of resolution last week as both parties were unwilling to compromise on any of the motions brought before a 3rd Circuit Court judge. West Hawaii Today.

Lending a hand: Nonprofit initiative offers path out of debt spiral. West Hawaii Today.

To celebrate a queen: Liliuokalani memorial service features powerful portrayal of beloved monarch. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Maui Committee to Hear From Experts on Sunscreen and Coral Reef Damage. The Maui County Council’s Infrastructure and Environmental Management Committee will receive presentations from two toxicologists about the effects of oxybenzone and octinoxate on Maui’s coral reefs and marine life at its Nov. 13 meeting. Maui Now.

Couch considering a run for state House. Former Maui County Council Member Don Couch appears to be making a run for political office again, eyeing the South Maui state House of Representatives seat now held by Rep. Kaniela Ing, according to Couch’s campaign website and state documents. Maui News.

Community members offer ideas for state lands in W. Maui. Charging nonresidents a user fee, restoring native habitats and installing more portable toilets were some ideas floated at a community open house Wednesday night on the future of state lands in the Honolua Bay and Lipoa Point areas. Maui News.

Maui residents say A&B is wasting water its diverting from streams. Some Maui residents say a big corporation is wasting water that it's diverting from streams and that the state needs to take action. Hawaii News Now.

BLNR approves A&B’s continued E. Maui stream water diversions. Company will have access to up to 80 million gallons daily for a year. Maui News.

Maui residents can enjoy hotel amenities for a fee. Maui residents will soon have the opportunity to live like hotel guests in Wailea, the state’s top luxury market — for a price. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai


Lori Stitt joins Malama Mahaulepu. Malama Mahaulepu is welcoming a new outreach and project coordinator, and advancing a new survey — all at the same time. Garden Island.