Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Senator profits in state contract, Hawaii population declines, Learmont replaces Oshiro in state House, new pier at Hilo harbor, candidates already lining up for 2020 Honolulu mayoral race, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Honolulu Ala Wai boat harbor © 2017 All Hawaii News
Conflicts arise over harbor contract. A legislator as well as a member of the Board of Land and Natural Resources have ties to the public relations firm hired by the state to help determine redevelopment of the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Lawmakers Are Used To Hearing About Potential Conflicts Of Interest. Legislators argue there are good reasons to vote even on issues where they may have potential conflicts. Associated Press.

State DOE on track with plan to meet new federal benchmarks. The Hawaii Department of Education says it’s working with federal education officials to finalize the state’s plan for complying with new requirements of the Every Student Succeeds Act. Star-Advertiser.

Appeals court: Trump exceeded authority with travel ban. A federal appeals court panel has ruled that President Donald Trump once again exceeded the scope of his authority with his latest travel ban, but the judges on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals put their decision on hold pending review by the U.S. Supreme Court, meaning the ban involving six majority Muslim countries will remain in effect. Associated Press.

Hawaii’s Population Declines For The First Time In Several Years. Hawaii was one of eight states, plus Puerto Rico, that saw a net decline. Civil Beat.

Health insurance premiums on the rise. More than 320,000 Hawaii workers and individuals will pay higher health insurance premiums starting Monday. Star-Advertiser.

Learmont
Learmont To Replace Oshiro In Hawaii State House. She is a former legislative aide to the former longtime lawmaker, who resigned to join the labor board. Civil Beat.

Iwamoto seeks lieutenant governor post. Kim Coco Iwamoto says corporations spend millions of dollars to get their voices heard at the Hawaii Capitol. Garden Island.

More Tuna For Hawaii Fishing Boats In 2018. An international commission slightly expanded catch limits for U.S. longliners based in Honolulu but the industry is still hoping for more. Civil Beat.

Attorney General: Landowners must pay for use of their own land once sea rises.  Oceanfront property owners who once were well shy of the protected state shoreline could find themselves having to purchase easements for their existing homes and structures such as seawalls as the sea creeps inland. West Hawaii Today.

California Approves Saito Extradition To Hawaii. The Hawaii State Hospital patient escaped in November and flew to the mainland. Civil Beat.

Hawaii's economy to benefit from preclearance agreement with Canada. Pacific Business News.

Young Brothers’ cargo volume edges up. The state’s largest interisland cargo carrier said in a report due out today that volume edged up 0.3 percent from the year-earlier period and is up just 0.7 percent for the first nine months of 2017. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Anderson, Pine eye 2020 mayor’s race to replace Caldwell. The jockeying has begun at Honolulu Hale over who will take over the third-floor corner office at City Hall after incumbent Mayor Kirk Caldwell leaves when his term runs out in 2020 — if not sooner. Star-Advertiser.

Privately owned memorial tour website under investigation. The state Office of Consumer Protection said it is investigating representations made by a website that touts itself as the “Pearl Harbor Visitors Bureau,” offers tours and says more than 750,000 visitors have been served. Star-Advertiser.

State scales back work on airport space. The state Department of Transportation is building a $40 million to $45 million structure under Gate 6 at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport that was meant to provide operating space for Island Air, but that space will now be left vacant in the wake of the airline’s bankruptcy. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority has fallen short of making its full state reimbursement for the Hawaii Convention Center for the past two years and may extend the facility’s debt repayment schedule again — even though the agency still owes 79 percent of the center’s original $350 million balance. Star-Advertiser.

City sweetens tow deal. Starting New Year’s Day, the city will have a new contract in place to cover the dozens of police-initiated vehicle tows that occur across the island daily. Star-Advertiser.

Volunteers Keep One of Makiki’s Best-Kept Secrets Afloat. The state wants to convert Hawaii’s only volunteer-run public library into a state-run facility, but it’s waiting on a lease agreement from the city. Civil Beat.

A woman's struggles after a crash with an HPD officer renew questions over discipline. The renewed attention is coming at a time when a new chief, Susan Ballard, has taken the reins at the department and, according to one of her deputies, has ordered a review of HPD’s entire discipline system to bring more consistency to the process. Star-Advertiser.

Filipino WWII vets help select artist for monument on Oahu. After decades of injustice and neglect, Filipino WWII veterans are finally winning recognition for their dedication to Allied forces during the war. Star-Advertiser.

Preserving Hawaii's Railway History. The Hawaiian Railway Society in Ewa runs the only continuously operating historical railroad in the state. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

State officials and other dignitaries marked the opening of a new pier Friday at Hilo Harbor. The 602-foot-long reinforced concrete pier, built parallel to the shoreline, will allow workers to load and unload barges more safely and efficiently, and separates cargo from the docks used by cruise ships, officials said. Tribune-Herald.

Preserving historic Honokaa. The Historic Honokaa Town Project, which aims to preserve and commemorate the unique plantation buildings of Honokaa, is expected to place a total of 14 Honokaa entries on the Hawaii Register of Historic Places by early 2018, with seven of those properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places as well, said project coordinator Gerald De Mello. Tribune-Herald.

A draft burial treatment plan for iwi found on lands of the former Moaula Plantation were debated on Thursday. Big Island Video News.

The problem of feral pigs. Although feral pig populations on the Big Island appear to remain steady, for some residents, swine incursions will make the holiday a brown Christmas. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Wind farm seeks OK to ‘take’ more endangered bats. Auwahi Wind wants to increase permitted bat fatalities from 21 to 197 over 25 years. Maui News.

Maui home sales fall amid lower inventory. Sales of single-family homes in Maui County plunged last month amid dwindling inventory while the median price increased. Star-Advertiser.

Life after sugar – a year later. It has been 12 months of transition for former plantation workers. Maui News.

Kauai


Rats are nowhere to be found on tiny Lehua Island four months after the conclusion of an eradication project. Star-Advertiser.

People monitoring the ecosystem recovery on Lehua Island report that four months after the conclusion of a rat eradication project there are still no signs of the invasive Pacific Rats. Garden Island.

Canines used to find human waste in Kauai streams. Three samples were collected at Waiopili stream mouth in October and all samples tested positive for human sewage by both dogs. Garden Island.