Friday, October 16, 2020

Smooth opening day for trans-Pacific travel to Hawaii, most Hawaii residents wear masks, Honolulu rail tops $10B, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

fromm KITV4 Facebook

More than 8,000 out-of-state passengers fly into Hawaii on the first day they could test out of a travel quarantine. It was a solid first day for the reopening of Hawaii tourism with 8,000-plus passengers coming through local airports — still only a little more than a third of October 2019’s daily domestic air traffic. Star-Advertiser.

Opening Day For Hawaii Tourism
: It’s Just The Beginning. Lt. Gov. Josh Green laid out several likely next steps as Hawaii reopened to travelers on Thursday with 8,000 arrivals expected. Civil Beat.

Thousands Arrive With Pre-Tests, Bypass Quarantine. Thirty trans-Pacific flights arrived in Hawaii yesterday on the first day of the state’s traveler testing program, carrying an estimated 8,000 to 10,000 people. Hawaii Public Radio.

Tourists return to Hawaii amid ever-changing pandemic rules. A new pre-travel testing program allowing visitors in Hawaii who test negative for COVID-19 to come to Hawaii and avoid the two weeks of mandatory quarantine — a measure that’s been in place for all arriving passengers for most of the year. Hawaii Island requires a second, on-arrival rapid antigen test to avoid the 14-day mandatory quarantine. Associated Press.

On first day of traveler testing program, some report issues and confusion over rules. Thousands of visitors and returning residents flew into the state Thursday, on the first day of the much-anticipated traveler testing program. Hawaii News Now.

Visitors face long lines, long wait times at airports on first day of pre-travel testing program. The first day kicked off for Hawaii’s pre-travel testing program, and thousands from the mainland took the opportunity to come to Hawaii. KHON2.

Safe Travels Hawai'i Program officially launches.
Day One of state's pre-travel testing program. KITV4.

State to rely on voluntary, post-arrival tests to gauge safety of traveler testing program. Over the next couple days, the state’s first pre-tested travelers will get a notification on their Safe Travels Hawaii app asking if they’d like to volunteer to take a second COVID-19 test. Hawaii News Now.

Are You Wearing A Mask In Public? These Hawaii Researchers Want To Know. Hawaii is one of the first states to conduct a widespread study of how many people are wearing face masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The highest rate of mask usage was observed on Oahu at 83%, followed by Hawaii Island at 76%, Maui at 71%, and Kauai at 62%. Civil Beat.


New record set for Hawaii voter registrations. Following a record-setting primary election turnout, more than 832,000 people across the state already had registered to vote as of Thursday — and many likely already have voted through mail-in ballots for the upcoming Nov. 3 general election, which will decide Honolulu’s next mayor and the next U.S. president. Star-Advertiser.

Civil Beat/HNN Poll: Hawaii Voters Embrace Biden For US President. They also say they are satisfied with voting by mail, especially in a time of coronavirus. Civil Beat.


New State Laws Have Significant Effects on Employers. The rules have changed on nondisclosure agreements, criminal background checks and family leave, while financial penalties for violating some labor regulations have increased as much as 1,000%. Hawaii Business magazine.

Former UPW Officials Sue Union Over Ousters. Former Hawaii labor union officials ousted over allegations of financial abuse are suing their old union over claims their terminations were not properly handled. Civil Beat.

Courts And Prosecutors Are Keeping Jail Populations Lower During Pandemic. Efforts to divert arrestees to reduce jail populations and limit the spread of COVID-19 have made some headway. Civil Beat.

VIRUS TRACKER — Oct. 15: 91 New COVID-19 Cases In Hawaii. The state identified 13 people with COVID-19 on the Big Island and two on Maui. Two Hawaii residents were diagnosed with the virus out of state. The remaining 74 cases were reported on Oahu, according to the Department of Health. Civil Beat.


Honolulu mayoral candidates agree it’s time to reopen tourism, despite the risks. The next mayor of Honolulu will start the job just a few months after the relaunch of tourism thanks to a new traveler testing program. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu mayor wants to open mobile COVID-19 testing lab at airport. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell says he believes the city is ready to reopen tourism ― and hopes a new mobile lab at Honolulu’s airport will increase testing capacity. He says the lab could process up to 10,000 tests a day, delivering results in under three hours. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu on track to move to Tier 2 of reopening strategy. Oahu is on track to move into the next level of reopening the economy in one week with restrictions on gyms, personal services and other activities being lifted as long as coronavirus cases remain low. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu Rail Cost Now at $9.9 Billion But That Estimate Will Likely Grow. The contractor overseeing Honolulu rail for the federal government believes the new, local cost projections released this week showing an $832 million price increase are too low and likely to climb, according to project board members. Civil Beat.

Rail project cost estimate now jacked up above $10 billion. The projected cost of the city’s troubled East Kapolei-to-Ala Moana rail project has now moved above the $10 billion mark. Star-Advertiser.

The latest estimate for Honolulu’s embattled rail project: $10B. The cost for the city’s beleaguered rail project continues to soar ― and now stands at nearly $10 billion. Hawaii News Now.

Ko Olina to open all 4 lagoons to public. The Ko Olina resort, hit by overwhelming opposition to its plan to ban the public from several lagoon beaches, said today it was reversing direction and will open all four of its lagoons to the public with parking beginning Friday. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Trans-Pacific Travelers Arrive at Kona Airport. The first trans-Pacific travelers participating in Hawai‘i’s pre-travel coronavirus testing program arrived at Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole Thursday afternoon. Big Island Now.

Visitors To Kona Tested On Arrival As Tourists Return To Hawaiʻi. President and Founder of Premier Medical Group Hawaii, Dr. Scott Miscovich, MD, talks about the busy Thursday of passenger testing at Kona Airport. Big Island Video News.

Few hiccups at Hilo airport as trans-Pacific travelers return. The first day of post-flight testing at Hilo International Airport went by largely without incident as a trickle of trans-Pacific travelers returned to the Big Island on Thursday. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii Island surpasses 1,000 COVID-19 cases. Hawaii Island surpassed 1,000 COVID-19 cases Thursday with the addition of 13 new cases, bringing the island’s tally to 1005 since Feb. 28. West Hawaii Today.

Puakea Ranch expansion approved. A special permit to expand the uses of a historical ranch near Hawi was approved Thursday on a 6-0 vote by the Leeward Planning Commission. West Hawaii Today.


Mayor Victorino Declares ‘Rebirth of Our Visitor Industry’ with Launch of Safe Travels Program. At Kahului Airport, just before the Thursday morning arrival of United Airlines Flight 417 from Los Angeles, Maui Mayor Michael Victorino declared: “This is a new day for Maui County. It is a rebirth of our visitor industry.” Maui Now.

Milestone Reached in Hawai‘i’s Tourism Reboot, Leaders Monitor for Adjustments. The state’s Safe Travels Hawai‘i program officially launched on Thursday marking the start of pre-travel COVID-19 testing for trans-Pacific flights arriving in Hawaiʻi. Maui Now.

Many Maui travelers using state’s new pre-travel testing program. Most of the passengers aboard the first trans-Pacific flight to Kahului Airport since the state’s pre-travel testing program began took advantage of the option to bypass Hawaii’s two-week quarantine with a negative COVID-19 test. Maui News.

Protests Arise Over Burial Protections on West Maui Construction Site. Tensions are rising on Maui’s west end over construction that’s begun on known historic burial grounds in Kauaʻula Valley. Lineal descendants of the area have flocked to the site in recent days to halt the project until archeological work can be done to ensure ancestral remains are protected. Hawaii Public Radio.

Pukalani Skate Park social distancing. Signs requiring face masks and social distancing at the Pukalani Skate Park are not being followed earlier this month as groups of skaters gather closely with only a few in the park wearing masks. The facilities were shut down due to COVID-19 in March but reopened on June 1. Maui News.


Meet the Candidates: Arryl Kaneshiro. Growing up on Kaua‘i, incumbent Kaua‘i County Council Chair Arryl Kaneshiro said there was always a desire to live up to expectations. Garden Island.

Tracking the spread of ROD on Kaua‘i.
Researchers at the University of Hawai‘i Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit have collaborated with multiple agencies to develop a management tracking system to keep crucial data organized as the Rapid ‘Ohi‘a Death fungus continues to spread to parts of Kaua‘i. Garden Island.


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