Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Muslim woman finally gets driver's license wearing hijab, big solar farms coming to state, cooling the Capitol with seawater, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

ACLU courtesy photo
Laycie Tobosa wearing hijab, ACLU courtesy photo
ACLU warns Hawaii officials after Muslim woman told to remove hijab for driver’s license photo. Laycie Tobosa spent months convincing drivers’ license officials in Hilo that she was not required to remove her traditional Muslim head scarf — or hijab — to pose for a photo for her new driver’s license, which she eventually received. Star-Advertiser.

ACLU: Woman denied full driver’s license after refusing to expose ears for photo. Big Island officials said it’s already changed its policy on the issue. Hawaii News Now.

Muslim Woman Claims License Renewal Discrimination. ACLU asks Hawaii County officials to respond with a plan for correcting “constitutional violations” after dispute over headscarf. Associated Press.

The ACLU of Hawaii sent letters to all four counties after a Muslim woman in Hilo struggled to get her driver's license, because she was wearing a hijab, or head scarf, to take her photo. KHON2.

ACLU objects to county’s treatment of Muslim woman. The American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii wants Hawaii County to show it no longer follows policies regarding driver’s license pictures it says violates the First Amendment. Tribune-Herald.

A Muslim woman who says she endured an “18-week bureaucratic mess” to acquire a full driver’s license at the Hawaii County Department of Motor Vehicles has gotten the backing of the ACLU of Hawaii, prompting a response from County officials. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii County granted driver’s license to Muslim woman. No financial damages or compensation are sought. KITV4.

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Hawaiian Electric plans record boost in renewable energy. The Hawaiian Electric Companies are in contract negotiations with developers for seven solar-plus-­storage projects that would result in the largest infusion of renewable energy in state history and would accelerate the clean energy transition for Oahu, Maui and Hawaii island. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Electric selects 7 solar-plus-storage projects for a combined 260 MW of renewable energy. Honolulu-based utility Hawaiian Electric said on Tuesday it has selected seven solar-plus-storage projects for the largest infusion of renewable energy in state history. Pacific Business News.

Can social media significantly influence the upcoming General Election? Some digital media experts say what you see online most likely won't translate at the polls. KITV.

UH Faculty Weigh in on Property Tax Amendment. A heated debate is taking place around the state over whether or not we should amend the state constitution. One proposal would give the state legislature the power to tax investment property to fund public education. Hawaii Public Radio.

Unions representing sheet metal workers, flight attendants and public service employees took steps Tuesday to support the 2,700 Marriott hotel workers in Hawaii who were on their second day of a strike for higher wages and better benefits. Star-Advertiser.

Local 5 strike could impact many more hotels. Day two of picketing at major hotels in Waikiki and Maui, but striking Local 5 workers aren't the only ones without contracts. KITV.

Dangers of drugged driving focus of MADD conference. Mothers Against Drunk Driving Hawaii is turning its attention to the problem of drugged driving among youth from 16 to their 20s. Star-Advertiser.

What Hawaii Can Learn From Puerto Rico’s Devastation. The U.S. territory still hasn’t recovered from Maria. Hawaii officials hope better coordination and a more resilient electric grid will help avoid a similar fate. Civil Beat.

Native Hawaiian Convention to wrap up in Waikiki Wednesday. The Native Hawaiian Convention in Waikiki held a forum for candidates for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs' board of trustees Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.


Oahu

Has Kakaako Gotten Too Fancy Even For IBM? The company will soon depart its landmark namesake building to make way for developer offices and model condos. Civil Beat.

Solar permits issued on Oahu fell 31%. Solar permits issued on Oahu plunged 31 percent in September to leave the nine-month total even with the year-earlier period. Star-Advertiser.

$53 Million needed for repairs at Hawaii Convention Center. Hawaii Convention Center is facing up to $53 million in repairs, and state legislators may help out. KITV4.

Hawaii finalizes deal to use chilled seawater to cool state office buildings in Honolulu. The state of Hawaii has finalized an agreement with Honolulu Seawater Air Conditioning to cool seven state office buildings and the state Capital through the use of chilled ocean water starting in 2021. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Salary Commission considers, but holds off voting, on latest round of increases. Much smaller raises are being considered for top county officials next year, following last year’s eye-popping double-digit hikes. West Hawaii Today.

No charges in stolen police drug case; deputy chief calls investigation ‘thorough’. West Hawaii Today.

Utility-scale solar farms could be coming to Hawaii Island. Hawaiian Electric announced Tuesday that it selected companies to build two solar projects on the island that would have a combined capacity of 60 megawatts. Tribune-Herald.

His farm is buried under lava, but he can’t find relief from payments on his state agricultural loan. ‘The promises from the politicians don’t seem to be materializing.’ Hawaii News Now.

Pahoa merchants struggle to make ends meet following lava disaster. Nearly two months after the apparent pause in volcanic activity in lower Puna, Pahoa businesses are struggling to stay afloat. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs will host orientation sessions on Maui, Molokai and Lanai over the next two weeks for its new $500,000 pilot grants program, which will offer smaller, one-year funding awards for projects that benefit the Native Hawaiian community. Maui Now.

Second Circuit Chief Judge Joseph Cardoza was recognized as the 2018 Jurist of the Year at a recent state Judiciary awards ceremony. Maui News.

The Kaanapali Beach Hotel on Maui was named the No. 1 Top Hotel in Hawaii by readers of Condé Nast Traveler in the publication’s 31st annual Readers’ Choice Awards. Maui Now.

Kauai

The Department of Public Works and Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. will hold an open house and presentation on the Lihue Town Core Revitalization project on Thursday, Oct. 18, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Wilcox Elementary School Cafeteria. Garden Island.

There was a luau Monday night and the delegation from Candon City spent time with Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr., Tuesday following the signing of the Friendship City Relationship agreement. Garden Island.