Friday, April 6, 2018

Former Sen. Daniel Akaka dies, governor signs medical aid in dying legislation, congressional delegation wants military control over emergency warning system, Caldwell mulls islandwide sit-lie ban, coffee production drops 15%, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Late U.S. Sens. Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka, 2012 file photo ©2018 All Hawaii News file photo
Daniel Kahikina Akaka, the first Native Hawaiian to serve in the U.S. Senate and a fixture for decades on Capitol Hill, where he became known as the “ambassador of aloha,” has died Friday, his family said. Hawaii News Now.

Former U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, the humble and gracious statesman who served in Washington with aloha for more than three and a half decades, died Thursday night at the age of 93, sources tell the Star-Advertiser. He had been hospitalized with an illness. Star-Advertiser.

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Beginning Jan. 1, terminally ill residents will be eligible to begin requesting prescriptions for life-ending medication, following Gov. David Ige’s signing today of the “Our Care, Our Choice” Act into law. Star-Advertiser.

After 2 decades of debate, medical 'aid in dying' bill signed into law. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii became the latest liberal-leaning state to legalize medically assisted suicide Thursday as the governor signed a measure into law allowing doctors to fulfill requests from terminally ill patients to prescribe life-ending medication. Associated Press.

The “Death with Dignity” legislation was signed into law in Hawaii today. Hawaii Public Radio.

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All four members of Hawaii’s congressional delegation urged the U.S. military Thursday to take responsibility for alerting the public about any future ballistic missile attacks, taking that role away from the state, which botched the job in January. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Congressional Delegation Wants Feds To Take Over Missile Alerts. State emergency officials were grilled at a U.S. Senate committee hearing as lawmakers try to rebuild public trust in the warning system. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency began implementing its plan for responding to a ballistic missile attack before it was entirely drafted, a senior state official said Thursday at a hearing on why the agency mistakenly sent cellphone and broadcast alerts across the islands in January. Associated Press.

U.S. Pacific Command acknowledged it, too, made mistakes on the day of the false missile alert. Hawaii News Now.

At a Senate Committee hearing at the East-West Center on Thursday, all members of Hawaii's congressional delegation questioned why it's not the military taking the lead in issuing missile alerts. KITV.

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Hawaii Supreme Court Rules Some Extra-Long Sentences Unconstitutional. Several offenders who were given extended sentences for their crimes by a judge, rather than a jury, may have to be resentenced. Civil Beat.

Bid for back taxes on car rentals goes before Hawaii Supreme Court. Hawaii News Now.

Lawmakers are taking up two bills today, one making the University of Hawaii a tobacco-free zone and another to restrict access to e-cigs to those under 21. Hawaii Public Radio.

Several bills that would improve working conditions or wages across the state are on the home stretch to being passed into law. Tribune-Herald.

Former principal appointed to serve as chair of Board of Education. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii is facing a critical shortage of doctors, and it's expected to get worse. KHON2.

The state’s coffee production dipped 15 percent to 24.3 million pounds of cherry in the 2017-2018 season despite an increase in bearing acreage from 7,000 to 7,300 acres, according to estimates compiled in January by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. West Hawaii Today.

All the major parts of two neighbor island housing markets moved in unison last month with sale volumes and prices rising on Hawaii island and Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

Vietnamese worker saved lives as Hawaii fishing boat sank. Associated Press.

Oahu

Caldwell Wants A Sidewalk Sit-Lie Ban Everywhere On Oahu. If it’s approved, the proposal to move more homeless people out of public spaces could face a legal challenge. Civil Beat.

By the end of this year or so, a pavilion built to dry commercial fishing boat nets in Honolulu should be transformed into a job training and community center by a nonprofit helping at-risk teens and young adults. Star-Advertiser.

Beginning next week, unexploded ordnance experts will use underwater metal detectors to search for military munitions off Makua Beach, focusing on a 22-acre area. Hawaii News Now.

Developer Exploring Giant Wind Farm in West Oahu. The plan includes building up to 16 turbines in the Waianae mountains to pay for a massive land restoration project. Civil Beat.

Grubhub is the newest addition to Honolulu’s food delivery scene, joining other Mainland-based competitors Postmates, Uber Eats and Bite Squad. Pacific Business News.

Tax preparer Guillermo Dahilig of Waialua pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to one count of aiding and assisting in the preparation and filing of false tax returns. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

A mural on the wall of a Hilo business has drawn controversy for its depiction — and subsequent redaction — of a firearm in the midst of a tableau celebrating the Merrie Monarch Festival. Tribune-Herald.

Hu Honua Bioenergy won’t need to conduct an environmental review for a damaged storm water outfall along the coast near Pepeekeo since it no longer plans to use it for its biomass power plant. Tribune-Herald.

Neighbors praise new South Kona KTA on store’s first day. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

An application deadline has been set for Wednesday, April 11 at 3:30 p.m. for individuals seeking consideration to fill the remaining term for the District 8 State House seat left vacant by Representative Joseph Souki. Maui Now.

Gov. David Ige said Thursday that he’s asked Maui County Democratic Party officials to move as quickly as possible to provide him with three names from which to appoint a new representative for the 8th District House seat. Maui News.

Former Maui County Council Member Don Couch is seeking the Democratic nomination for the South Maui state House seat held by Rep. Kaniela Ing, who has announced he’s a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives. Maui News.

Maui County lifeguard and former mayoral candidate Tamara Paltin has filed nomination papers to seek the West Maui residency seat on the County Council, she said in an announcement. Maui News.

A blessing for the embattled southern phase of the Lahaina bypass will be held at 2 p.m. April 15, Gov. David Ige’s office said Thursday. Maui News.

Garrett Marrero, the owner of Maui Brewing Co., is up for another national award. Pacific Business News.

Kauai

Raising awareness of different types of homes available for purchase is why the Kauai Board of Realtors is hosting its third annual Islandwide Open House on Saturday. Garden Island.

Home sales on Kauai rose by more than 25 percent last month, compared to March of last year, and the median price of a single-family home rose 13 percent, according to statistics from Hawaii Information Service on behalf of the Kauai Board of Realtors. Pacific Business News.