Friday, July 30, 2010

Gubernatorial candidates spar at Waikiki forum, RIMPAC expanding, environmental laws weakening, A&B revenues strengthening, more news from all of the Hawaiian Islands

As the biennial Rim of the Pacific exercise wraps up this weekend, the U.S. Navy is already preparing for expanded exercises in the future. West Hawaii Today.

The state is proposing changes to the current environmental assessment law that could prevent the public from having a voice in future projects, including ones involving invasive species control and eradication. KHON2.

Former U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie, in one of his sharpest critiques of his opponent in the Democratic primary for governor, described former Mayor Mufi Hannemann last night as a candidate of the status quo. Star-Advertiser.

For the first time since both officially entered the race for governor, Neil Abercrombie and Mufi Hannemann shared the same stage at a candidates' forum. KHON2.

Democratic rivals Neil Abercrombie and Mufi Hannemann laid out their platforms for economic development and tourism at a forum sponsored by the Waikiki Neighborhood Board. Hawaii News Now.

An analysis of state House and Senate races suggests Hawaii's Republicans will remain in the wilderness following the 2010 elections. But some contests against Democrat opponents will be competitive, as will several Democratic primaries. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii County Council chairman has received nearly $7,000 in taxpayers' money to spend on a re-election campaign he cannot lose. Tribune-Herald.

A top state Department of Transportation official asked residents Wednesday to support the agency's proposed six-year, $4 billion highways modernization plan, aimed to target backlogged road projects. West Hawaii Today.

A federal judge's order has delayed shipment of Oahu's municipal trash to a landfill in Washington state for at least a month. Star-Advertiser.

The state Department of Education is laying off about 40 clerical staff workers as part of an effort to save $142 million in the coming school year. Hawaii News Now.

Today and Friday public school teachers will be on their first two furlough days of the 2010-11 school year, the teachers union said. Maui News.

Hawaii leaders are planning to turn next year's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference into a tourism marketing opportunity, showcasing the islands' beauty and its ability to host businesses. Associated Press.

The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) will be a gathering of world leaders in Honolulu next year. It will be one of Hawaii's most important conventions ever held. A new committee has been created to help with the organizational preparations. Hawaii News Now.

Plans are underway to showcase Hawaii to the world during next year's APEC meeting in Honolulu. KHON2.

A jump in methamphetamine-related arrests on Oahu and a significant increase in positive results in workplace drug tests statewide suggest a surge in meth use -- even by people trying to find jobs in Hawaii's struggling economy. Star-Advertiser.

Two more candidates on Thursday entered the race for Honolulu mayor. KITV.

Councilman Donovan Dela Cruz on Thursday announced he is dropping out of the race for Honolulu mayor to run for the state Senate instead. KITV.

The County Council approved Wednesday a controversial bill that allows owners of transient vacation rentals on agricultural lands to apply for non-conforming use permits as long as their operations meet certain criteria. Garden Island.

Efforts to change how Maui County council members are elected – replacing at-large elections with nine single-member districts -- stalled this month as council members opted to delay a decision until next year. Molokai Dispatch.

Evildoers beware; 40 electronic eyes are being installed in downtown Hilo, Kailua-Kona, Pahoa and at Akaka Falls State Park. Tribune-Herald.

Maui County welcomed 1,068,804 visitors in the first six months of 2010. Maui News.

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. is reporting net income for the second quarter of $28.9 million, compared to $12.6 million in the second quarter of 2009. Associated Press.

For a limited time, SOS Metals Recycling is offering free vehicle recycling. Lahaina News.

Collectively, they tallied more than 146 years with the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, long enough to outlast the newspaper that chronicled Hawaii history for 128 years. Star-Advertiser.

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