Thursday, August 22, 2019

Big changes coming to the Ala Wai, Supreme Court mulls Native Hawaiian homesteads backlog, Honolulu rail could sap electricity as it passes, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Kayaker on the Ala Wai ©2019 All Hawaii News
The Honolulu City Council on Wednesday voted by a narrow 5-3 margin to approve a measure allowing Mayor Kirk Caldwell to move forward with the contentious $345 million Ala Wai flood mitigation project. The project being spearheaded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is supposed to protect the areas around the Ala Wai Canal - and Waikiki specifically - from heavy flooding during a large-scale storm by building a series of detention basins along the Ala Wai watershed including Manoa, Palolo and Makiki, as well as walls on the sides of the canal. Star-Advertiser.

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Court hears arguments in DHHL trust case. The Hawaii Supreme Court on Wednesday heard oral arguments in a breach-of-trust lawsuit against the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands that has dragged on for 20 years. Star-Advertiser.

2,000+ native Hawaiians say state failed to award homesteads in timely manner. The Supreme Court still needs to make a ruling on how damages would be awarded. KITV.

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Awareness of State Sunscreen Ban Is High, But Work Still Needs To Be Done. That’s according to a new survey from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Hawaii Public Radio.

Researchers Analyzing eDNA In Water Samples Brought Back From Papahanaumokuakea. Scientists are using an established DNA technique to discover just what lives in the deep coral reefs of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Hawaii Public Radio.

16 states are hosting tax-free shopping on school supplies. Should Hawaii be next? Last legislative session, state lawmakers considered proposals to create a general excise tax holiday for retailers who sell school supplies, only if they passed on that discount to shoppers. Hawaii News Now.

The Fattest Paychecks In Hawaii Government Don’t Always Go To The Top Bosses. More than 14,000 employees have been added to Civil Beat’s salary database, including many who earn more than the governor. Civil Beat.

Champion Of Legal Aid To Hawaii’s Poor Announces Retirement. After a 50-year career in public interest law and advocacy, Hawaii Appleseed Center co-founder Victor Geminiani announced on Wednesday that he will step down as the agency’s longtime executive director. Civil Beat.

Can This New Hawaii Venture Become The Stock Fund For Millennials? A Colorado portfolio manager has big plans for a $44 million S&P 500 index fund that he has brought to Hawaii. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Panel rejects outside lawyers for HART workers. A Honolulu City Council committee on Wednesday rejected a request for $300,000 in taxpayer money to be spent for private attorneys to represent employees of the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation, or HART. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu’s New Trains Could Sap Power From Nearby Buildings And Homes. If the trains draw too much power as they speed up to leave stations, it could affect the use of household appliances and other electrical-powered equipment. Civil Beat.

Toxic Runoff At Issue As State Considers New Permit For Kaneohe Boat Facility. Some residents worry contaminated dust will continue to be a problem if maintenance operations start again. Civil Beat.

Long-time tenants of new condo-hotel project site say goodbye. A portion of Kapiolani Boulevard near Ala Moana Center has changed dramatically. And more high rises are on the way. KHON2.

Navy commemorates the 100th anniversary of Dry Dock 1 located at Pearl Harbor shipyard. Navy and local officials commemorated 100 years of history at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard’s Dry Dock 1 Wednesday, noting the incredible World War II accomplishments of civilians working alongside military counterparts, the shipyard’s current necessity, and the continuum of responsibility for an important cultural place. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Kim to hold second meeting with Hawaiian leaders. Mayor Harry Kim will hold a second meeting with leaders of the Native Hawaiian community Friday regarding the Thirty Meter Telescope. Tribune-Herald.

‘Our tax dollars’: Soaring costs to state for TMT protest draw concern. Lawmakers are raising major concerns about the rising costs for law enforcement and first responders at the site of the Thirty Meter Telescope protest on Mauna Kea. Hawaii News Now.

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PGV gets OK for new wells. Applications from Puna Geothermal Venture for two new geothermal wells have been approved, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources confirmed Wednesday. Tribune-Herald.

Council parses Kona CDP changes. What’s in a word? Plenty, it seems, when it comes to the difference between “shall” and “should.” West Hawaii Today.

Fines pile up for owners of downtown Hilo property. The owners of a downtown Hilo property that has become a homeless encampment have accrued nearly $200,000 in fines after failing to remove illegal structures for the better part of a year. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Testifiers: Action needed now to curb overtourism. Visitor population is nearly 10 percent over island plan’s policy. Maui News.

How to Reduce the Negative Impacts of Tourism. Limiting the number of rental cars on county roads, placing a moratorium on new hotel construction and instilling a “code of conduct” for incoming tourists. Maui Now.

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Work on Wailuku Civic Complex to begin in September. Surrounding road, infrastructure and parking work to begin. Maui News.

Zoning is topic of workshops. Proposed zoning updates for Wailuku town will be the subject of Maui Redevelopment Agency workshops this and next week in town. Maui News.

Woman says she complained to Maui police a year ago about officer accused of inappropriate conduct. The Maui officer who is under criminal investigation for allegedly trying to throw a criminal trial for a woman he arrested for DUI is now facing new allegations — this time from a woman who claims he tried to coerce her after he responded to her 911 call for an assault last year. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

Herbicide ban at schools. Kauai schools are working to end herbicide use on campuses after the state Department of Education announced a ban of herbicides at public schools. Garden Island.

Residents may qualify for property tax exemptions. Families that have lived on their land for generations and have no intention to sell, but can’t keep up with taxes based upon soaring property values, would be granted the opportunity to move from their current “residential” or “residential investor” classifications to various others, including homestead. Garden Island.

Resident: Horse carcass needs to go. Kauai County is considering what to do with a horse carcass reported lodged in the rocks at Aliomanu Beach on Monday. Garden Island.

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