Thursday, June 24, 2021

Medical facilities mull employee vaccination mandate, protesters demand police-killing investigations, Kauai tapping into budget reserves due to state withholding TAT, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Historic Waikiki Aquarium prepares to reopen after temporary closure amid coronavirus pandemic.
It has been over one year since guests have walked through the doors at the Waikiki Aquarium. KHON2.

Ige: Lack Of Public Input Is Driving Concerns Over Bills
— And Possible Vetoes. When Gov. David Ige announced Monday he plans to veto 28 bills approved by the Legislature this year, he aimed some extra criticism at a number of measures he said lawmakers passed without giving the public enough opportunity to provide input. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s National Guard Begins Winding Down Its COVID-19 Response Teams. Federal funding is set to expire in September, and Gov. David Ige has asked commanders to draft plans scaling back operations. Civil Beat.

Hawaii medical facilities weigh whether to require coronavirus vaccine for employment. Hawaii medical facilities weigh whether to require coronavirus vaccine for employment. The head of the Hawaii Nurses Association said they are prepared to discuss the matter with employers as more doses of the COVID-19 vaccine are becoming available. KHON2.

As COVID forced businesses online, governor works to advance Hawaii’s digital economy. As the pandemic forced Hawaii to adopt a digital economy much faster than expected, Gov. David Ige admitted Wednesday that the transition wasn’t perfect. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaiʻi Wants to Improve and Expand Its Digital Economy. Gov. David Ige gathered with members from Technology Readiness User Evaluation to discuss expanding technology usage in the community. The TRUE Initiative discussed how Hawaiʻi should have a higher digital literacy to keep up with the global economy. Hawaii Public Radio.

High tech help available to go digital. Local businesses share their success with high tech upgrades, to encourage others to join the digital economy. KITV4.

How Hawaii’s Remote Worker Initiative Connects Students To Industry Pros. A volunteer project connected to the Movers & Shakas program led to paid internship opportunities for some public high school students. Civil Beat.

High-tide coastal flooding in Hawaii and other U.S. coastal regions to accelerate. Hawaii and other U.S. coastal regions will experience an accelerating number of high-tide flooding days starting in the mid-2030s, according to a newly published study. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii reports 42 new cases; 57% of residents have been vaccinated. Of the new cases, 24 were on Oahu, 11 were on Hawaii Island, two were on Maui, and one was on Kauai. There were also four residents diagnosed out-of-state. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Protesters demand investigations into more than 30 alleged killings by Honolulu police officers. In response to the alleged killing of more than 30 suspects by police since 2010, about 40-50 protesters marched on Honolulu police headquarters Wednesday and demanded independent investigations into the deaths. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu taxpayers could be on the hook for more legal fees for another police shooting from 2019. City taxpayers could be on the hook to pay more legal fees for Honolulu Police Department officers who were involved in a fatal shooting that occurred in 2019. KHON2.

Peer-to-Peer Car Rentals on Honolulu Streets Draw Attention From Tax Department, Neighbors. Complaints about tourists picking up peer-to-peer car rentals in local neighborhoods have the state Department of Taxation taking note. Hawaii Public Radio.

This North Shore Community Has Had Enough Of Towering Wind Turbines. But clean energy advocates and power producers are pushing back against new Honolulu City Council proposals meant to protect communities from large wind energy projects. Civil Beat.

Clean Air Act violations lead to nearly $200K for a Kapolei power plant. A coal plant in Kapolei will pay nearly $200,000 in a settlement with the Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA fined AES Hawaii for violations of the Clean Air Act and emergency planning, along with the Community Right-to-Know Act. Hawaii News Now.

Dillingham Airfield future still up in the air with eviction date pushed to December. The eviction date for Dillingham Airfield tenants has been pushed back another six months as lease negotiations continue between the U.S. Army and the Department of Transportation Airports Division. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

State AG repudiates lawsuit over HCCC outbreak. State Attorney General Clare Connors responded Wednesday to a federal class-action lawsuit filed by 11 Hawaii inmates — including five at Hawaii Community Correctional Center in Hilo — over conditions and practices in jails and prisons the plaintiffs claim caused COVID-19 outbreaks. Tribune-Herald.

Retired Hilo police detective avoids jail time in assault cases. The charges were dropped in exchange for no contest pleas entered on Dec. 30 to third-degree assault in connection with a May 25, 2020, domestic incident in which the victim was Ian Lee Loy’s wife, County Councilwoman Sue Lee Loy, and to misdemeanor harassment for a July 25, 2019, assault on Neal Tanaka, the county Building Division’s acting deputy chief. Tribune-Herald.

Alii Drive condo heads to contested case hearing. A proposal to build a five-story condominium on Alii Drive is heading to a contested case hearing after three neighbors petitioned the Leeward Planning Commission. West Hawaii Today.

PUC asks state, county for input on PGV. Months after suspending an application for an amended power purchase agreement between Hawaiian Electric and Puna Geothermal Venture — pending the completion of a supplemental environmental review — the state Public Utilities Commission is seeking input from both Hawaii County and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Tribune-Herald.

HPP road project gets green light to proceed. A controversial road project in Hawaiian Paradise Park has been delayed, but subdivision officials say work will proceed, despite some community opposition. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Sustainability drives talks on reforming visitor industry. While local leaders have different ideas of how tourism should look moving forward, many agree on one thing — Maui is overwhelmed. Maui News.

Fee for tourists, free for locals. Another Maui hotspot eyes tourism controls. Another hotspot for visitors on Maui’s North Shore is once again being overwhelmed. Hawaii News Now.

Virtual power plant coming to Maui and other islands. Energy Conference covers new green energy program with HECO. Maui News.

Haleakalā Crater Wilderness Cabins and Reservations System Open July 1. Visitors will soon be able to reserve and stay overnight in the cabins located in Haleakalā Crater. Reservations for wilderness cabins Hōlua and Kapalaoa go live on Recreation.gov beginning July 1, 2021 at 7 a.m. HST. Maui Now.

UH Maui College Vaccination Effort Features Giveaway for Tuition, Laptop. The University of Hawaiʻi Maui College announced that vaccinated members of the campus’ ʻohana are eligible to win free tuition for the fall semester or a MacBook Air. Maui Now.

Kauai

County tapping into reserves to cover TAT.
Since March 2020, the county has tapped into at least 40% of its reserve fund. Garden Island.

‘Voluntourism’ takes off with Kauai beach cleanup. Kauai’s popular and heavily trafficked Shipwreck’s Beach, where surf forms in front of the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa and peels past long white sands to the cliffs at Makawehi Point and the start of the Mahaulepu Heritage Trail, is slated for a cleanup on July 7. Star-Advertiser.

KCSC, others, continue to benefit from ‘Rise to Work’ program. Nonprofits, including Kaua‘i Community Science Center in Waimea, joined the county’s “Rise to Work” program in April, which was relaunched by the county’s Office of Economic Development. Garden Island.

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