Monday, January 13, 2020

Hawaii Legislature gears up for opening day, secret cameras irk Maui council, Princeville Resort closing for renovations, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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‘Big ideas’ finished at Legislature, critics say. While previous generations of Democrats were determined to pursue dramatic goals such as employer- funded health care or a temporary disability insurance system, a more cautious cadre of lawmakers seems to be aiming lower today, according to the critics. Star-Advertiser.

Legislature 2020: Making Hawaii Livable Again. State lawmakers will consider raising the minimum wage, paid leave programs and ways to keep residents from leaving the islands while grappling with climate change. Civil Beat.

Hawaii looks to boost construction to offset industry slowdown. Construction work in Hawaii is likely to slow next year, but state lawmakers seem inclined to go along with Gov. David Ige’s plan to budget extra money to boost state construction spending and give a lift to the industry. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiʻi’s Future Liabilities are Expected to Cost $88 Billion. Hawai‘i is in a deep financial pit. Projects to mitigate climate change, improve infrastructure and meet public employee pension and retiree health care obligations are expected to cost the state and four county governments over $88 billion over the next 30 years, according to a report called “Troubled Waters: Charting a New Fiscal Course for Hawaii,” produced for the Hawai‘i Executive Conference. Hawaii Business Magazine.

30 years later, it’s the last session for Rep. Cynthia Thielen. At the age of 86, state Rep. Cynthia Thielen has just begun her 30th — and final — consecutive year representing Kailua and Kaneohe as one of the few Republicans in the state Legislature. Star-Advertiser.

Mandatory Report On Hawaii Trash Disposal Hasn’t Been Filed In 4 Years. The state health department hasn’t been updating the Legislature on recycling programs, landfill diversion efforts or imported fuel reliance as required. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Foodbank says hunger is a chronic problem in Hawaii. One in eight people in the islands regularly do not have enough food. KITV4.

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Space Force unit coming to Hawaii Air National Guard. The Hawaii Air National Guard, picked to have one of four offensive space control squadrons nationally in the Air Guard, expects to start selecting candidates in April. Star-Advertiser.

The flash flood watch issued for the state ahead of a stormy weekend has been extended through to the early start of the work week. The National Weather service extended the watch until Monday evening at 6 p.m. Hawaii News Now.

One lettuce head at a time, farming program rooted at women’s prison changes lives. The farm program is called Learning to Grow. It’s run in partnership with the Lani-Kailua Outdoor Circle. The relationship started in 1999. Hawaii News Now.

Restriction on aquarium fishing being sidestepped, conservation group says. A coalition of conservation groups led by Earthjustice said the state has been shirking its duties in cracking down on the illegal collection of aquarium fish from Hawaii ocean waters. Star-Advertiser.

UH researcher documents impact of stainless-steel hooks on sharks. A newly published eight-year tiger shark study has found a significant number of sharks with stainless-steel fishing hooks lodged in their jaws. Star-Advertiser.

UH professor’s research shows marine life impacted long after being cut from fishing lines. A study shows how marine life is impacted after being cut from fishing lines. KHON2.

Oahu

Oahu Is Overhauling How It Counts The Homeless. Administrators of Oahu’s annual homeless count have struggled with inaccuracy and undercounting. Civil Beat.

Facing backlash, Land Board scuttles parking plan for Ala Wai Boat Harbor. The state Land Board on Friday shot down a controversial plan to eliminate 125 free parking stalls at the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor. Hawaii News Now.

Kakaako Waterfront Park upgrades set to begin at a cost of $450K. The parking lot at the Kakaako Waterfront Park will soon be temporarily closing for upgrades. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu office vacancy rate down to 9.9% in 2019. Renters of office space on Oahu no longer have the upper hand against landlords after a decade of having the dominant position. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

‘Health-care collapse’ Kim’s top legislative priority. Legislation tackling health-care costs, homelessness and cesspools are among six priorities identified by Mayor Harry Kim as the four county mayors head to Honolulu Wednesday to address legislative money committees. West Hawaii Today.

Removal of observatory on schedule. The decommissioning process for one of five Maunakea telescopes to be removed in the coming decade remains on schedule after the approval last month of several environmental assessments. Tribune-Herald.

Community speaks out against jail expansion. Officials from the state Departments of Public Safety and Accounting and General Services came to Hilo Thursday night to brief the public about the planned new housing module at Hawaii Community Correctional Center’s Punahele Street site. Tribune-Herald.

New multi-hazard mitigation plan to help lower risks on Big Island. Multiple public meetings planned around the Big Island this month will introduce the results of a risk assessment conducted for a required update of the county’s multi-hazard mitigation plan. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Covert cameras secretly installed, briefly active inside Council Chambers. An $8,000 project to install covert security cameras in the Council Chambers of the county building in order to monitor an active shooter or hostage situation was kept secret from most council members and the public, county officials said. Maui News.

Report: Health center failed requirements, denied access to DOH. Molokai Health Center not under direction of full-time physician. Maui News.

Maili residents sue to block affordable housing project. Some neighbors of the largely state-financed project called Hale Makana O Maili have sued the developer in hopes of stopping construction on the two-story apartment complex they consider out of place and not rightly permitted. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai

Program aims to spark EV charging stations. The Electric Vehicle Charging Station incentives program will supply rebates for the installation of shared-use EV charging stations, and is available to businesses, residences and institutions. Garden Island.

Closing for renovations. The Princeville Resort will shut down completely on May 1 “for many months” as it undergoes a major renovation, according to reservations staff members who were asked Sunday to explain why the hotel’s website was no longer accepting bookings for July. Garden Island.

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