Friday, June 25, 2021

Hawaii to lift restrictions for vaccinated U.S. travelers, local sentiment against tourists worsens, Ige signs electric vehicle legislation, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Locals Mostly T-shirt in Hilo June 17, 2021 ©2021 All Hawaii News
Hawaii resident sentiment toward tourism worsens, but majority believe issues are worth it. Only 53% of respondents said tourism has brought more benefits than problems in the 2021 HTA Resident Sentiment Survey conducted by Omnitrak and released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority today. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Will Lift Restrictions For Vaccinated US Travelers On July 8. Hawaii will lift quarantine and pre-travel testing requirements for domestic travelers from the mainland who can show proof of receiving a COVID-19 vaccination early next month, Gov. David Ige said Thursday. Civil Beat. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Garden Island. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Electric Vehicles Supported In Latest Hawaiʻi Bill Signings. Governor David Ige on Thursday signed three house bills into law that shared a common electrification of transportation theme. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now.

Ige signs women’s caucus bills and other measures.
Gov. David Ige on Thursday signed a slew of bills into law, including legislation from the Hawaii Women’s Legislative Caucus. Tribune-Herald.

Gutted with a Rusty Scalpel. A bill Gov. David Ige is threatening to veto and one he signed are the “winners” of this year’s Rusty Scalpel award from two public-interest groups. West Hawaii Today.

Remains from the USS Oklahoma that could not be ID’d will be reinterred at Punchbowl. At least 51 unidentified crew members of the USS Oklahoma were returned to Hickam Field on Thursday — and while no families were there to rejoice over the identification of a relative, as has been the case for 343 other crew mainly in recent years — the U.S. military gave the Dec. 7, 1941, heroes full honors. Star-Advertiser.

Hawai´i Vacation Rental Demand Surges in May. The total monthly supply of statewide vacation rentals was 572,900 unit nights (+71.8%) and monthly demand was 413,500 unit nights (+988.5%) over the course of the month. That resulted in an average monthly unit occupancy of 72.2 percent (+60.8 percentage points) for May, which was higher than the occupancy of Hawai´i’s hotels (61.5%). Big Island Now.

Matson Inc. ups dividend 30%, approves share buyback.
Matson Inc., the state’s largest ocean transportation firm, announced Thursday a 30.4% increase in its dividend and said its board has approved a share repurchase program totaling 3 million shares. Star-Advertiser.

Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems to receive federal funding. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz announced Thursday that Papa Ola Lokahi, a nonprofit organization that advocates for and coordinates health care for Native Hawaiians, and the five Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems will receive a total of $18.2 million in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

More Than Half Of Hawaii’s Inmates Have Been Vaccinated Against COVID-19. But a breakdown of individual facilities shows mixed results, with 89% inoculated at the Kulani Correctional Facility and 23% at the jail in Hilo. Civil Beat.

Hawaii cluster report highlights COVID-19 transmission in places of worship. The Hawaii Department of Health’s COVID-19 cluster report this week focuses on outbreaks in places of worship due to two clusters under investigation on Oahu and Kauai. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii reports 55 new COVID cases; no additional fatalities.
Of the new cases, 29 were on Oahu, 10 were on Maui, seven were on Kauai, six were on Hawaii Island, and one was reported on Molokai. There were also two residents diagnosed out-of-state. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Another Questionable Million-Dollar Honolulu Rail Contract? Documents suggest a contract for federal lobbying services was already a done deal before it was put out to bid. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Police Department push for more recruits.
The Honolulu Police Department is looking for qualified candidates to shore up staffing, increase officer safety and help fill 279 vacancies that cost the city more than $2.5 million in overtime expenses in a single quarter. Star-Advertiser.

HDOT Changes Plans For Farrington Highway Bypass After Community Protests. There is new hope for residents hoping to reroute Farrington Highway makai of Makaha Beach Park. Civil Beat.

Oahu driver licensing centers, satellite city halls to extend hours to meet demand. Driver licensing centers around Oahu will extend their hours starting July 1 to meet a growing demand for driver’s licenses, learner’s permits and state identification cards. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Fireworks, Other July 4th Celebrations Back on Big Island. The County of Hawaiʻi Department of Parks and Recreation on Thursday announced this year’s Fourth of July celebrations in Hilo and Kailua-Kona. Big Island Now.

EA For Kona Manta Viewing Site Moorings Open For Comment. The State of Hawaiʻi is planning to reconfigure and install additional day-use moorings at two popular manta viewing sites along the Kona coast. Big Island Video News.

Maui

Stage 1 Water Shortage Declaration for Upcountry Maui Takes Effect July 2.  Beginning July 2, the department will prohibit Upcountry water consumers from using water for irrigation, watering lawns, washing vehicles or other nonessential activities. Maui Now.

Maui County’s Vacation Rental Occupancy Increases to 75% for May.
In May 2021, Maui County had the largest vacation rental supply of all four Hawaiian counties with 234,400 available unit nights, with an occupancy rate of 75%, according to the latest Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority Report on vacation rental performance. Maui Now.

Kahului Park Playground closes because of ‘deterioration of play features’.
Kahului Park Playground on Maui is closed effective immediately because of the “deterioration of the play features,” the County of Maui’s Department of Parks and Recreation announced today. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

Maui restaurant with red DOH placard opts to close shop for good. Pizza in Paradise in Kahului was closed back in May for unsanitary conditions. During a routine inspection, health inspectors found live maggots in a pot of old food, roaches in the kitchen, and piles of customer trash. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

KPD graduates six in 94th recruit class. The Kaua‘i Police Department held a small outdoor ceremony on Thursday for its 94th Police Recruit Class graduates. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i Museum new exhibit hall dedicated to Maryanne Kusaka. In a surprise move by the Kaua‘i Museum Board of Trustees, the museum’s new exhibit hall was dedicated Waimakua in honor of Kusaka, who is the current head of the Trustees. Garden Island.

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