Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Special legislative session mulled for volcano response, no new tax to bail out Puna, Honolulu mayor vetoes ride-share caps, Pearl Harbor survivor gets sendoff, Kauai coral recovering, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Lava fountains reach 200 feet in this June 19 photo PC:USGS
The new normal: Vigorous eruptions just keep going on the Big Island. Hawaii News Now.

A special session of the state Legislature to help lava-ravaged Puna is being mulled for mid-August, as Hawaii County works with local legislators to put a plan together. West Hawaii Today.

Saving Hawaii’s GOP: A Tough Job For 3 Candidates For Governor. A west Oahu lawmaker, a perennial candidate and a former education official are vying to become just the third Republican governor since statehood. Civil Beat.

Ohio-based telecommunications company Cincinnati Bell said on Tuesday that it received the final regulatory approval for its $650 million acquisition of Hawaiian Telcom. Pacific Business News.

Hawaiian Telcom on Tuesday cleared its final regulatory approval for its pending $650 million sale to Cincinnati Bell. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Mayor Kirk Caldwell today vetoed a controversial bill that would make Honolulu the first city in the United States to cap how much Uber, Lyft and other ride-hailing drivers can charge during peak periods. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell vetoed a bill Tuesday that aims to limit how much Uber, Lyft and other ride-hailing companies can charge customers when demand surges. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has decided to veto a bill that would have limited surge pricing for ride-hailing or transportation network companies such as Uber and Lyft, a move that the two companies said would have made their business models unworkable. Pacific Business News.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell vetoed Tuesday a bill to regulate private transportation companies like Uber and Lyft. KHON2.

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Military officials address residents' concerns over location of missile radar. The thought of a new military installation next to the Kaena Point Satellite Tracking Station is prompting some concerns on Oahu's North Shore. Hawaii News Now.

New Kakaako affordable-housing rules set. A state agency regulating development in Kakaako last week finished four years of work to improve the future supply of affordable housing in the area filled with luxury condominium towers. Star-Advertiser.

Mililani was especially popular for homebuyers last month, and in the past year the sales for single-family homes in the area increased by 87 percent. Hawaii News Now.

Rents for single-family homes in urban Honolulu declined in March, compared to the year before, making Hawaii’s largest city the only market among 20 metropolitan areas to see a year-over-year decline, according to a report by CoreLogic. Pacific Business News.

The Honolulu Fire Department introduced a new member of the department today — an arson dog named Kukui. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu fire investigators have a new tool at their disposal when investigating arson and other suspicious fires in the form of a highly-trained arson dog. Hawaii News Now.

Seven vandal-resistant surveillance cameras are now in service at Waialae Beach Park in Kahala in an effort to curb illegal activity. KITV.

Four cases of Legionella infection have recently been treated at Queen’s Medical Center. Star-Advertiser.

Pearl Harbor Survivor Who Worked To Identify Remains Leaves Hawaii. He was a young sailor at the time of the attack. Now 97, he’s moving from the islands to Boise, Idaho. Associated Press.

Pearl Harbor survivor Ray Emory gets special Navy sendoff. Star-Advertiser.

A Wisconsin sailor who died at Pearl Harbor will be laid to rest more than 75 years after his death. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Council kills GET: Administration looking for $5M in cuts. 4-5 vote kills plan to plug a $5 million volcano-blasted hole in the budget by instituting a temporary quarter-percent general excise tax surcharge. West Hawaii Today.

Council Rejects Tax Hike To Replace Revenue Lost To Eruption. The increase would’ve generated about $25 million a year. Instead, the 5-4 vote means service cuts are likely. Civil Beat.

A bill that would have raised the general excise tax on Hawaii island has died. KHON2.

Public lava viewing area far-off; officials still in ‘emergency mode’.A close-up view of the lower Puna eruption is currently reserved for the bold and those willing to risk a citation. Tribune-Herald.

The emergency response to the ongoing Kilauea eruption that has destroyed at least 577 homes and displaced several thousand Puna residents so far has racked up more than $5.8 million in unanticipated costs for state and county agencies. Star-Advertiser.

Volcano Watch: Colorful plumes — can we see volcanic gases? Tribune-Herald.

Lava output far outpaces previous eruptions. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory deputy scientist-in-charge Steve Brantley, speaking at a community meeting Tuesday night at the Pahoa High & Intermediate School cafeteria, said the current lower East Rift Zone eruption has put forth an estimated 145 million cubic meters of lava over 47 days. Star-Advertiser.

New Tools Benefit Geologists in Lava Flow Study. The eruption at Kilauea continues to send ash plumes into the sky and push lava into the ocean. While that has destroyed hundreds of homes and forced scores of people into shelters, it is also providing an unprecedented opportunity for scientific research. Hawaii Public Radio.

The ongoing eruption of the Kilauea volcano is not causing crystals to rain from the sky despite reports of residents finding little green gems in the area. Associated Press.

With fissures releasing sulfur dioxide, volcanoes producing vog, and ocean lava flows creating laze, adjusting to a life of toxic gases is something many Puna residents have had to do since eruptions began. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii County Civil Defense said that 817 people have so far registered for federal assistance amid the ongoing eruption of Kilauea volcano on Hawaii's Big Island. Pacific Business News.

Free medical clinic opens at Keaau High School. Over nine days the Tropic Care health clinics will be offered by the Oahu-based 1984th U.S. Army Hospital, offering medical health screening, school sports physical exams, dental services, eye exams, hearing screenings, nutritional consultation, veteran services and prescription eyeglasses. Star-Advertiser.

Tropic Care 2018 offering free health care services through the end of the month. Tribune-Herald.

Trial postponed until next year for marijuana activist. Jury selection was to begin Monday in the trial of longtime marijuana activist Mike Ruggles, accused by authorities of operating an unlicensed medical cannabis dispensary at his Fern Acres home. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Councilors seek update on two county projects with Anaergia. Concerns expressed over proposal changes, deadline extensions. Maui News.

The Lahaina Restoration Foundation is seeking the public’s help in finding information about a hit-and-run accident that resulted in damage to the exterior wall of the Old Lahaina Prison. Maui Now.

In an effort now to deepen their work, a halau is establishing a cultural center and joining in a larger effort to create a regenerative community on Maui. Hawaii Public Radio.

DLNR, residents partner to clean up large ball of fishing nets on Molokai. On Molokai, a clean up has begun of a large ball of nets in Halawa Valley. KHON2.

Kauai

The revised cost estimate for the emergency flood repairs on Kuhio Highway on the North Shore and the upgrade of three bridges is $80 million, according to a Tuesday press release. Garden Island.

Incumbent Mason Chock, 47, of Wailua, has filed for reelection to the Kauai County Council. Garden Island.

There are bright spots in the world’s coral reefs, places where corals are thriving even though scientists say we’ve lost half the world’s reefs in the last three decades. The coral in Anini Bay and at Waipa on Kauai are examples of rebounding reefs according to the scientists and underwater enthusiasts that visit the reef. Garden Island.