Thursday, February 22, 2018

Florida school shooting brings 'social media hysteria,' new legislation, to Hawaii; registration fees may be hiked for electric vehicles, Honolulu Police Commission picks new chairwoman, Big Island council puts GET on life support, seawall irks Maui residents, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Honolulu slid into the 10th spot on a list ranking the best cities for public transit in 2018. Pacific Business News.

Honolulu among U.S. cities with best public transportation. Hawaii News Now.

A bill to boost the state registration fees for electric and hybrid vehicles was tentatively approved by the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday. Owners of electric vehicles currently pay weight taxes and a registration fee of $45 per vehicle per year, but do not pay the gasoline tax. Star-Advertiser.

The Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism is seeking public input as it develops a non-binding plan to spend up to $8.1 million from a settlement with German automaker Volkswagen to promote the reduction of vehicle emissions in Hawaii. Garden Island.

Ige leads effort urging Congress to protect funding for clean energy programs. The bipartisan U.S. Climate Alliance, under the leadership of Hawaii Gov. David Ige, has urged the U.S. Congress to protect the U.S. Department of Energy from funding cuts proposed by the Trump administration. Pacific Business News.


‘We Are So Far Behind’: Hawaii Legislators Look To Make Schools Safer. After another gun-related massacre on an American campus, lawmakers consider requiring interior door locks and intercom systems. Civil Beat.

Police and schools are cracking down on students who make threats after concerns were raised following the mass shooting at a Florida high school last week. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers hope to prevent a mass shooting in the islands, by banning bump stocks. One of several measures this legislative session aiming to tighten gun regulations. KITV.

Following the deadly mass shooting at a Florida high school, there is a lot of attention on school safety. The number of gun incidents in Hawaii schools has actually dropped. Last year there were 21 incidents all involving air guns. Hawaii Public Radio.

Police: Social media caused hysteria. Hawaii Island’s police chief said the decision to post extra officers on public school campuses Wednesday in Puna and Kona was made because social media “fed into the anxiety” of the community in the wake of perceived threats of possible gun violence made on the internet. Tribune-Herald.


Bill looks to ban plastic straws; some already making shift. West Hawaii Today.

Why Opening A Dialysis Center Takes Years Longer In Hawaii. A shortage of outpatient centers forces some chronic kidney disease patients into long hospital stays and late-night treatments. Civil Beat.

Hawaii has joined a coalition of states in opposing an application by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools to regain its status as a nationally-recognized accreditor after failing to fulfill its oversight responsibilities. Pacific Business News.

Should state hospital patients with violent pasts be tracked post-release? KHON2.


Honolulu Police Commission Gets New Leadership. Loretta Sheehan was a sharp critic of former chief Louis Kealoha and how the commission handled problems during his tenure. Civil Beat.

Attorney Loretta Sheehan was elected chairwoman of the Honolulu Police Commission 6-0 today. She replaces retired hotel executive Max Sword. Star-Advertiser.

Susan Ballard, Honolulu’s first female police chief, has a strong ally in the new chairwoman of the Honolulu Police Commission, Loretta Sheehan. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Police Commission has a new leader and she's already promising change. KITV.

The former police officer who was fired after video of him in a violent fight with his ex-girlfriend surfaced will be reinstated and get years of back pay. Hawaii News Now.


State rules for Sierra Club in lawsuit over aging military fuel tanks. Hawaii News Now.

Kahauiki Village: A Model to Ease Homelessness. There are more than 550 bills relating to affordable housing this legislative session. But, there’s one community model that could be duplicated statewide. Hawaii Public Radio.

Community voices concerns about Old Stadium Park homeless. Dozens of people gathered at the McCully Moiliili library Wednesday night. KHON2.

Bill would move oversight of Kakaako from the Hawaii Community Development Authority to city. KITV.

Storm forced millions of gallons of sewer water to spill in Windward Oahu. KHON2.

Punahou settles suit with family of child kicked out after father's alleged misconduct. The boy was kicked out after a 5-year-old classmate alleged that the boy’s father showed her pornography during a sleepover. Hawaii News Now.

Health Department fines Hawaiian Isles Water Co. $14K for violations. Hawaiian Isles Water Co. had to pay a $14,400 fine after being cited by the Hawaii Department of Health for delinquent reports and payments to the state-administrated Deposit Beverage Container program between August and November 2017. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Foreseeing the almost certain death of a bill raising the general excise tax, the County Council voted unanimously Wednesday to put it on life support, at least temporarily. West Hawaii Today.

UH regents to ask for Mauna Kea audit. Responding to accusations of financial mismanagement, the University of Hawaii Board of Regents on Friday will be asking its internal auditor to look at the university’s Mauna Kea books with fresh eyes. Star-Advertiser.

A tense hearing on the future management of Mauna Kea steered into the issue of the Thirty Meter Telescope sublease. Big Island Video News.

A bill that would bring lifeguards to Kua Bay remains alive in the state House after securing a key hearing before the Committee on Finance. West Hawaii Today.

Officer-involved shooting prompts heavy police presence in Puna. An investigation is underway after a Big Island police officer was shot late Wednesday in Hawaiian Beaches. Hawaii News Now.


A plan to construct a seawall to save a West Maui condominium from erosion is dividing the community. Hawaii News Now.

A Sea Talk focusing on Maalaea Harbor Water Quality and the use of effluent in Eco-Restoration will take place from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday. Maui Now.

3 Maui Beaches Named to TripAdvisor’s 2018 Best in US Awards. Maui Now.

Work to replace an old culvert bridge that has shut down South Kihei Road near the old Suda Store since August will be completed “by the end of next week at the latest . . . maybe earlier,” said county Department of Public Works Director David Goode on Wednesday. Maui News.

HGEA nurses disgruntled over Kaiser management. The head of about 800 union workers at Maui Memorial Medical Center said Maui Health System officials need “to step up their game” and start fulfilling “the bill of goods” touted by the private entity to improve former public hospitals on Maui. Maui News.


A resolution that would let citizens vote on ending term limits for the County Council drew ire from some community members on Wednesday. Garden Island.

Kualii announces council candidacy. An Anahola man who has previously served on Kauai’s County Council has announced his candidacy for the upcoming race. Garden Island.