Friday, May 31, 2019

Interior secretary tours Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Caldwell prioritizes climate change, Ige visits Kauai, iwi discovered during sewer work, Grand Wailea’s $91.5M expansion hits opposition, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

USGS HVO Scientist in Charge Tina Neal (left) and Dept. of Interior Secretary David Bernhardt (center) and USGS HVO scientist Matt Patrick. (DOI Photo/Tami A. Heilemann)
The United States Secretary of the Interior got a firsthand look at the damages and dramatic changes at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park that were brought about by the 2018 eruption of Kilauea. Big Island Video News.

Interior secretary visits national park. U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt on Thursday inspected some of the damage that was caused by earthquakes at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park during last year’s Kilauea Volcano eruption, and said there are steps the federal government can take to expedite repairs. Star-Advertiser.

Bernhardt shares recovery options, says decision on long-term solution for HVO still ‘months away’. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory To Stay On Hawaii Island, Hirono Says. Big Island Video News.


Visitor arrivals climb 7% while spending dips more than 6%. April marked the sixth month in a row that more visitors came to Hawaii than the previous year, while creating less economic benefit. Star-Advertiser.

April Tourism Revenue Declines Despite More Visitors. On Oahu, spending dipped in April despite 494,192 visitors. Civil Beat.

The Challenges Of Finding Hawaii’s Next Generation Of Teachers. As the number of new teachers coming out of local colleges decline, the state Department of Education hopes “teacher academies” and other strategies will ignite new interest in the profession. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Why Is Every Legislative Session Shrouded In Political Mystery? Politics in Hawaii is full of mystery, but not good mystery. Hawaii’s mysteries are not engaging whodunits. They are obscurities and opacities that bewilder us and make us cynical. Civil Beat.


Caldwell’s speech gets mixed reaction. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s decision to focus on climate change and his newly minted O‘ahu Resiliency Strategy during his seventh State of the City address Thursday night won favorable remarks from some key individuals — but also some skepticism. Star-Advertiser.

Caldwell Unveils Tax Plans To Increase Affordable Housing. The Honolulu mayor wants the City Council to consider a new vacancy tax and an increase in the property tax for certain high-end parcels. Civil Beat.

The mayor says he supports a ‘vacancy fee.’ Here’s what that means. In his State of the City address Thursday, Mayor Kirk Caldwell proposed a “vacancy fee” for residences that remain empty for most of the year. Hawaii News Now.

"We Are in a Crisis Period" Honolulu Mayor Says of Climate Change. Caldwell used the June 1st start of hurricane season to launch the city’s climate resilience strategy, which he called the issue of our time. Hawaii Public Radio.

In 7th State of the City, mayor focuses on threat of ‘climate crisis’. Honolulu’s homeless crisis and its beleaguered rail project took something of a backseat Thursday at the mayor’s seventh State of the City address, which instead pivoted toward a looming but not yet present crisis: Climate change. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu mayor focused on climate in 7th State of the City address. Resilience he says is where our economy meets the environment. KITV.


City Council questions payment of Louis Kealoha’s legal fees. It’s likely the Hawaii Judiciary will decide whether Honolulu taxpayers will pay the tab for former Police Chief Louis Kealoha’s defense in the high-profile federal conspiracy case now unfolding in U.S. District Court. Star-Advertiser.

City Council Targets Decision To Pay For Louis Kealoha’s Legal Defense. A council committee wants to file a lawsuit in an attempt to overturn a Honolulu Police Commission decision. Civil Beat.

Council Committee Challenges City Funding of Kealoha's Defense. Hawaii Public Radio.

Katherine Kealoha allegedly didn’t reveal conflict. Katherine Kealoha allegedly didn’t reveal conflict. Star-Advertiser.

KEALOHA TRIAL: FBI video specialist testifies on what was recovered from video of mailbox theft. KHON2.

Testimony in Kealoha corruption trial surrounds surveillance footage of alleged mailbox theft. More witnesses took the stand on Day 6 of the Kealoha Corruption Trial. KITV.

State launches misconduct investigation after deputy sheriff’s testimony in Kealoha trial. The state Department of Public Safety is investigating a deputy sheriff for possible misconduct after he admitted in federal court that he used state resources to do favors for Katherine Kealoha, a former Honolulu deputy prosecutor. Hawaii News Now.

State agency investigating Katherine Kealoha’s meeting with uncle. The state Department of Public Safety says it is “obligated and committed to thoroughly investigate” the actions of a deputy sheriff who testified in U.S. District Court that he arranged to have inmates meet family members at state court even though the inmates were not scheduled to be in court. Star-Advertiser.


City Council Urges Mayor to Stop Waimanalo Beach Park Project. The city is building baseball fields, a playground, and more parking stalls for park goers. Hawaii Public Radio.

Neighbors oppose planned affordable housing project in Maili, citing infrastructure concerns. Neighbors of a proposed affordable housing project in Maili gathered Thursday to voice their concerns about possible infrastructure and traffic associated with the development, saying their rural road can’t handle a project that will house about 200 people. Hawaii News Now.

Homeless campers remain at Kakaako park despite numerous enforcement efforts. Homeless campers have found reasons to stay at Kaka­ako Gateway parks despite various efforts from the city, state and private organizations to move the homeless away from that area. Star-Advertiser.

Neighborhood board election draws more than 18,000 voters. Results of Honolulu’s neighborhood board elections were certified by the Neighborhood Commission Wednesday and were posted on the commission’s website this morning. Star-Advertiser.

Results Announced In Oahu Neighborhood Board Elections. There are 435 seats on 33 boards islandwide, but there were no candidates for 29 of the positions. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Iwi discovered in lava tube at Lono Kona project. Iwi kupuna, or human remains, were discovered in a lava tube broken into by contractors digging sewer lines for the Lono Kona project in a neighborhood residents call “Hamburger Hill.” West Hawaii Today.

Dairy looks to sell remaining cows, remove lagoons. Big Island Dairy will remain on the Ookala property it is leasing from the state until all remaining cows have been sold and removed, the state Department of Health said Wednesday. Tribune-Herald.

Kona pool repair cost lower than expected. A contractor has been hired to repair the Kona Community Aquatic Center, but county officials say the county pool facility will remain closed through the summer. West Hawaii Today.


Grand Wailea’s $91.5M expansion hits opposition. Residents cite concerns over burials, growing tourism, sea level rise. Maui News.

Homeless Encampments at Kanaha Cleared. The County of Maui departments of Parks and Recreation, Environmental Management, Public Works and Housing and Human Concerns collaborated with the Maui Police Department to address homeless encampments and public health/safety concerns Thursday morning at Kanaha Beach Park. Maui Now.

Maui Events Included in OHA Grant Funding. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs announced the selection of 22 community events that will receive a total of $100,000 from OHA’s Ahahui Grants Program. Maui Now.


Ige sounds off. Gov. David Ige, speaking before about 300 people at the Koloa Landing Resort, outlined some thoughts for about 25 minutes before taking questions. Garden Island.

Highway reopening pushed back. The reopening of Kuhio Highway west of Hanalei, originally scheduled for June 13, has been pushed back again, according to the Hawaii Department of Transportation. Garden Island.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Interior secretary inspects USS Arizona Memorial, TSA warns of long airport lines, coral lawsuit threatened, Maui and Kauai pass budgets, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Honolulu airport ©2019 All Hawaii News
Airport squeeze. Get there early, TSA urges. Travelers are advised to get to Hawaii’s airports three hours in advance to compensate for what is expected to be the nation’s busiest summer travel season on record. Star-Advertiser.

Leaving on a jet plane? Plan ahead and arrive 3 hours early (even for inter-island flights). Hawaii News Now.

TSA’s Tips To Prepare For Summer Travel. The forecast is for the busiest season on record at HNL. Civil Beat.

The Transportation Security Administration is advising the public to be prepared for the busiest summer travel season on record at HNL. Big Island Video News.


Arizona Memorial might reopen by October, officials say. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt got a close-up view of the disabled Arizona Memorial Wednesday before pledging to finish the repairs to its concrete passenger dock as soon as possible. Star-Advertiser.

USS Arizona Memorial repairs continue to be a top priority according to U.S. Secretary of the Interior. The Secretary of the Interior was on Oahu Wednesday and he toured one of the nation's iconic structures here on Oahu and talked about repairs. KITV.


State Ethics Commission: DPS deputy director walked a fine line in rallying employees. The ethics commission says a Deputy Director of Public Safety may have crossed an ethical line by pushing workers to support their boss, Nolan Espinda. Hawaii News Now.


Cauliflower coral at the center of a new lawsuit against the Trump Administration. The Center for Biological Diversity says they will sue the Trump administration for failing to protect Cauliflower coral. Hawaii News Now.

Feds could face coral lawsuit. The Center for Biological Diversity on Wednesday announced plans to file suit after a federal agency missed a deadline to rule on whether to list cauliflower coral as a threatened or endangered species under federal law. West Hawaii Today.

Lawsuit: Protect Threatened Cauliflower Coral In Hawaii. The Trump administration is accused of failing to protect the species known as Ko'a in Hawaii. Civil Beat.


Teachers Who Stay In Hawaii Find Ways To Close The Culture Gap. The diversity of Hawaii’s public schools student population isn’t matched by the makeup of the state’s teachers. Civil Beat.

Grid geared up for hurricane season, Hawaiian Electric says. The Hawaiian Electric Companies said it has been working year-round to build more resilient grids ahead of the upcoming hurricane season, which begins on Saturday. Star-Advertiser.


Katherine Kealoha’s actions questioned in conspiracy trial. Former deputy prosecutor Katherine Kealoha’s actions in a 2011 criminal case involving her uncle Gerard Puana took center stage on the fifth day of the federal conspiracy trial against her; her husband, retired police Chief Louis Kealoha; and three current and former police officers. Star-Advertiser.

Witnesses: Kealohas Targeted Uncle Years Before Mailbox Theft. Several people testify Louis and Katherine Kealoha had it out for Gerard Puana long before they accused him of stealing their mailbox. Civil Beat.

KEALOHA TRIAL: Week two is underway, get updates here. KHON2.


Caldwell’s State of City address to key on ‘climate crisis’. An Oahu Resiliency Strategy designed as a road map for how the city will deal with climate change, sea-level rise and other 21st century issues is at the center of Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s seventh State of the City address tonight. Star-Advertiser.

Caldwell says Waimanalo park’s improvements will proceed. Mayor Kirk Caldwell said Wednesday that the city will continue work on Phase 1 of the Waimanalo Bay Beach Park improvement project because it would cost up to $300,000 to pull back from an existing contract, but that he is amenable to halting future phases if the community so chooses. Star-Advertiser.

First phase of Sherwood Forest park project to continue, despite emotional meeting. Emotions ran high on Wednesday during a special meeting at the Honolulu City Council, on the controversial plans to clear Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo. KITV.

Bulk Waste Pilot Program To Begin Monday In Urban Honolulu. Starting Monday, a new pilot program for bulky trash collection takes effect for Honolulu's urban core. Hawaii Public Radio.

City: If appointment-based bulky item pickup doesn’t work, fees might be next. In a bid to rein in ballooning costs for handling trash, the city is moving Urban Honolulu’s bulky item pickup to an appointment-based system starting Monday. Hawaii News Now.

Formby Named Head Of Pacific Resource Partnership. The former Honolulu City Councilman previously served on the board of the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Trial set in missing police evidence case. A retired Hawaii Police Department officer accused of illegally taking drug evidence from a police locker and notifying Hilo arcade owners of a gambling raid pleaded not guilty Wednesday to 10 criminal charges. Tribune-Herald.

Council to discuss funds for Kau sewer systems. The Hawaii County Council will take up requests to borrow $37 million for two wastewater treatment projects in Ka‘u at a Finance Committee meeting next week. Tribune-Herald.

Mayor: It’s time to clean up Mooheau Park and make it safe for families. Hawaii County will close Mooheau Park on Friday for clean up in response to what officials describe as unsanitary conditions. Tribune-Herald.

She’s Fought Nearly Three Years To Adopt Her Grandson. Hawaii Keeps Saying No. The state says it tries to reunite children with kin. But after Deborah Goodwin’s daughter died, it awarded custody to non-relatives and blocked her adoption attempts. Civil Beat.

USPS Proceeds With Relocation of Kamuela Post Office. The Kamuela Post Office will continue at the current location until a new facility is operating at an as-yet undetermined location, USPS says. Big Island Video News.


Maui County Council OKs largest budget in memory Tuesday. $823.6 million for next fiscal year heads to Victorino’s desk. Maui News.

Maui County Council passes $823 million budget by majority vote. The Council passed the $823 million budget by majority vote Tuesday, it is $42 million more than what the mayor requested. KITV.

Council confirms Lutey. Corporation counsel gets nay votes from chair, vice chair. Maui County Council approved the appointment of Moana Lutey as corporation counsel on Tuesday, with two opponents citing their concerns with the county’s position on the longstanding Lahaina injection well suit. Maui News.

Tariff Uncertainty Challenges Growth at Hawaii's Largest Craft Brewery. A 25 percent tariff on Chinese-made steel poses “a tremendous challenge” for Maui Brewing Company, according to co-founder and owner Garrett Marrero. Hawaii Public Radio.


County Council comments on $242M spending plan. The Kauai County Council has refrained from making public comment on the 2019-2020 fiscal year budget throughout the budget process, which started in March. But on Wednesday, councilmembers were allotted 10 minutes by Council Chair Arryl Kaneshiro to voice their thoughts about this year’s budget during the bill’s second and final reading. Garden Island.

Councilmember Felicia Cowden was not in attendance for Wednesday’s Kauai County Council meeting. She is traveling to Volgada, Russia to be a delegate at a Russian-American peace conference. Garden Island.

Kauai scrambles for solutions after number of unsheltered homeless doubles. No longer just hidden in the Garden Isle’s dense vegetation, Kauai’s homeless crisis is now on display -- everywhere you go. Hawaii News Now.

Waimea pool reopens after renovation. The renovation work at the pool started in November. At a cost of about $1 million, the pool deck was restored, plumbing and electrical improvements were done, as well as accessibility upgrades in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Garden Island.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Tidal erosion forecast, Kealoha trial continues, Maui $823.6M budget scrutinized, bank agrees to take over Kawananakoa trust, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Crowded beach ©2019 All Hawaii News
Summer tides increase likelihood of Hawaii shoreline erosion. Hawaii’s big waves and high tides will make shoreline erosion and flooding likely this summer, officials said. Associated Press.


Ex-officer testifies at Kealoha trial that he ‘perpetuated a lie’ in mailbox theft case. Retired police officer Niall Silva admitted repeatedly lying to the FBI, federal prosecutors, grand jurors and in court testimony in connection with the alleged theft of the mailbox of retired Honolulu Police Chief Louise Kealoha and his wife, former Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha. Star-Advertiser.

‘My Heart Sank’: Former Officer Details His Role In Mailbox Conspiracy. Niall Silva, who pleaded guilty in 2016 for his part in the alleged framing of Gerard Puana, testified Tuesday that he falsified police reports and lied to the FBI. Civil Beat.

‘I perpetuated the lie’: Former officer testifies against Kealohas in mailbox trial. A retired police officer who pleaded guilty in connection with the public corruption case against Honolulu’s former police chief and his wife detailed on the stand Tuesday how he participated in the alleged conspiracy to frame one of the police chief’s in-laws. Hawaii News Now.

KEALOHA TRIAL: Week two is underway, get updates here. KHON2.


State Makes No Conclusion On Whether DPS Deputy Director Violated Ethics Code. But some employees felt coerced to support Public Safety Director Nolan Espinda’s confirmation, the Ethics Commission writes in a guidance letter to Jodie Maesaka-Hirata. Civil Beat.

Push to move more Hawaiians into trade industry. A recent economic study found 57% of Native Hawaiians do not earn enough to survive in Hawaii. But local non profit, Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement is working to change that. KITV.

Housing Costs Put A Crimp On Keeping Teachers In Hawaii. DOE is partnering with a developer to help educators with down payments, but other states are going much further by building teacher housing. Civil Beat.

Controversy over a cannabis compound remains amid a state 'crackdown'. The Hawaii Department of Health says cannabidiol (CBD) products sold without a prescription and outside of licensed medical cannabis dispensaries may be pulled from sale by health inspectors at any time. Hawaii News Now.


Bank agrees to take control of Kawananakoa trust. First Hawaiian Bank in a court filing has conditionally agreed to take over as trustee of the Kawananakoa Trust, saying it recognizes the importance to the Native Hawaiian community. Star-Advertiser.

Sen. Brian Schatz addresses Ala Wai Canal, climate change, abortion during town hall. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) said it wasn’t possible to pause a $345 million project aimed at safeguarding Waikiki and other Honolulu neighborhoods from catastrophic flooding from the Ala Wai Canal without risking federal funding, during a town hall Tuesday evening at Washington Middle School in Honolulu. Star-Advertiser.

Can HPD’s New Training Program Reduce Domestic Violence Within Its Ranks? After a “bad month” for officers being arrested on abuse allegations, the department talks about a new initiative. But not everyone thinks it will help. Civil Beat.

Suspect charged in attack of Honolulu police officer appears in court. Remington Troy Guyton was charged Monday with first-degree assault of a law enforcement officer, first-degree attempted theft and contempt of court. Hawaii News Now.

Former HPD officer ordered to pay $11,654 for taxes. Retired Honolulu Police Department Lt. Eric Yiu is not going to jail or prison for tax evasion and is even getting the opportunity to keep his criminal record clean. Star-Advertiser.

Dispute cresting over Kamaaina Kids’ commercial use of Kaneohe Bay. A state agency is trying to stop a local nonprofit focused on child care from selling ocean adventure activities at Kaneohe Bay after years of complaints. Star-Advertiser.

Surfrider Foundation volunteers band together to check for beach-water bacteria levels. Surfrider reorganized its beach-water testing program in February 2018 with the goal of adding frequency and new sites to the water quality monitoring already being done by the state Department of Health. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

County preps for all-mail election. Hawaii County, like the rest of the state, is preparing for a totally mail-in election next year, and the first step is to acquire new machinery to handle it. West Hawaii Today.

Airport to benefit from capital improvement funds. The Hilo International Airport will have a new air-conditioning system thanks to a $23.8 million capital improvement project. Tribune-Herald.


Affordable housing proposed for Waikoloa Village. A partnership between a California-based company and a Hawaii nonprofit both dedicated to developing affordable housing options is aiming to bring 60 rental units to Waikoloa Village. West Hawaii Today.

60 Affordable Rental Units Proposed For Waikoloa. A draft environmental assessment and anticipated finding of no significant impact has been published for the planned Kaiaulu O Waikoloa project. Big Island Video News.


Green waste being accepted at Keei Transfer Station. Hawaii County is again accepting green waste at the Keei Transfer station in South Kona after a three-month closure, with some new guidelines. West Hawaii Today.


Former, current budget heads disagree over spending hike. $823.6M budget up for second and final reading today. Maui News.

Na Hale O Maui blesses project, pours foundation on first lot. Na Hale O Maui blessed its affordable housing project in Lahaina on May 20 and poured a foundation on what will be the first of 12 lots on Wednesday. Maui News.

Water department seeking input on plan. The county Department of Water Supply is asking the public to participate in an online survey aimed at developing a strategic plan. Maui News.


Explore Kalalau -- without going there. There’s a way to explore the sheer cliffs and vibrant greens of the Kalalau Trail that have off limits to hikers for the past year. Garden Island.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

More Native Hawaiians becoming doctors, TSA allows cannabis product on flights, Honolulu police $10M over OT budget, Kauai tackles vacation rentals, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

PC: Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
Man sets flags at Punchbowl cemetery PC: Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam
Remembrance at Punchbowl on Memorial Day. Punchbowl cemetery was awash in more than 35,000 small and large American flags Monday as Memorial Day and the sacrifices made by American service members across the decades were observed amid a series of auspicious anniversaries coming closely together. Star-Advertiser.Star-Advertiser.

Where Hawaii’s Chronic Teacher Shortage Hits Hardest. Students at rural or lower-income schools are less likely to be taught by experienced, fully qualified teachers than elsewhere, DOE data shows. Civil Beat.

Number of UH minority medical school graduates reaches record. The University of Hawaii has seen a record number of minority medical student graduates despite low numbers of Native Hawaiians and Filipinos in college. Star-Advertiser.

More terminally ill are requesting lethal drugs under the new law. Since Jan. 1, when medically assisted death became legal in Hawaii, at least 17 patients have requested lethal drugs to end their lives and at least three of them went on to use the medication to “have a peaceful death.” Star-Advertiser.

TSA now allowing a cannabis product on flights. TSA updated passenger guidelines after the Food and Drug Administration approved a drug containing cannabidiol or CBD used by children with epilepsy. KITV.


Hawaii’s slow-growth economy is expected to continue. In what is becoming a recurring theme in local economists’ quarterly reports, the state’s economy is projected to keep inching forward with its gross domestic product — the total value of the state’s goods and services — growing from 1.2% to 1.4% annually over the next four years, according to a new economic forecast by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. Star-Advertiser.

Economist: Overtourism And Crowding Is A Pricing Problem. The number of tourists coming to Hawai'i has grown in the past three decades, but their spending in real dollars has remained the same. Hawaii Public Radio.

Good and bad signs for Hawaii's economy. Home sales are down. New vehicle sales are down. And bankruptcies are up. The state's chief economist says there is no recession just around the corner -- but not all economists agree. KHON2.


NTSB calls for safety improvements to rules following Kailua helicopter crash. Following three fatal crashes in the past month, including a helicopter crash in Kailua, the National Transportation Safety Board is calling for greater safety measures to the federal regulations covering them. Star-Advertiser.

Pet dogs trained to detect invasive species in Hawaii's forests. The fight to save endangered species in Hawaii is gaining more ammunition. KITV.


Honolulu Police Department seeks $10M transfer to fund overtime. The City Council Budget Committee last week gave tentative approval to a Honolulu Police Department request to transfer $10.25 million to cover salaries and wages during the last six weeks of the fiscal year due to unanticipated expenses. Star-Advertiser.

Hotel workers union reaches tentative deal with Hilton Hawaiian Village. The tentative deal is for a four-year union contract that reportedly covers some 1,800 workers. Hawaii News Now.

Completed questionnaires offer insight into prospective jurors for Kealoha trial. Many of the 413 prospective jurors for the Kealoha mailbox trial didn’t hold back when filling out questionnaires aimed at determining whether they could serve. Hawaii News Now.

Arbitrator asked to rule on private Kakaako road fines. Two brothers who created a public uproar over control of several streets they own in Kakaako are not bowing to the state’s attempt to impose a $250,000 fine over the issue. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu woman's campaign to clear-out Honolulu homeless comes with bus ticket to Waianae encampment and criticism. She posted her plan on Facebook. KITV.

Former BWS employee says automated meter reading system is bogus. Back in 2000, the Honolulu Board of Water Supply paid $30 million for an automated meter reading system to help it measure the monthly water use of its 170,000 residential and business customers. Hawaii News Now.

Nearly 1,000 beachgoers stung as jellyfish invasion keeps Oahu lifeguards busyNearly 1,000 people were stung today by box jellyfish at five beaches on Oahu’s south, west and north shores, city Department of Emergency Services officials said. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Thirty Meter Telescope Hearing Set For Storm Water Discharge Permit. The hearing on the NPDES application and draft permit to discharge storm water associated with construction activities from the TMT will be heard in Kona on Tuesday, June 25. Big Island Video News.

Video shows PTA public meeting. Protecting Native Hawaiian archaeology from Pohakuloa Training Area bombing exercises was top of mind for those attending a May 16 annual meeting with PTA officials, according to video footage provided by a participant. West Hawaii Today.

500 Kamehameha parcels to be checked for cesspools. Kamehameha Schools has conducted an assessment of its properties statewide in efforts to identify, and subsequently close, any large-capacity cesspools. Tribune-Herald.

Beach Created By Volcanic Eruption Was Born Polluted. You might think a brand new black sand beach would be pristine. But microplastics have already been detected at Pohoiki in Lower Puna. Civil Beat.

Kahaluu Ma Kai slated for completion in 2020. Every day, a historic plot of oceanfront aina is regaining more of its natural ambiance. West Hawaii Today.


Kanaha Beach Park Closure for Cleanup, May 29-31. Kanaha Beach Park in Kahului will be closed from 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 29, to 2:30 p.m. Friday, May 31, for park maintenance, repairs and cleanup. Maui Now.

Maui Liquor License Renewals Due June 15. The Department of Liquor Control is reminding liquor license holders that license renewal applications for the 2019-2020 fiscal year are due by 4:30 p.m. on June 15, 2019. Maui Now.

Homegrown Teachers Are The Norm At Molokai High. The school defies Hawaii’s revolving door of teachers at many isolated schools, with the vast majority staying more than five years. Civil Beat.


County cracks down on illegal TVRs. The Kauai County Council on Wednesday will hear public testimony on a bill aimed at helping the county shut down illegal vacation rental homes. Garden Island.

Kauai beach reopens after whale carcass, 30K pound head removed. The sperm whale carcass that washed ashore in Kealia over the weekend is now gone. Hawaii News Now.

Saving Kauai’s rare birds. Hiking through the sheer ridges and native forests of the world’s highest wetland, Justin Hite spends his time looking and listening for Kauai’s endangered forest birds. Garden Island.


Homegrown Teachers Are The Norm At Molokai High. The school defies Hawaii’s revolving door of teachers at many isolated schools, with the vast majority staying more than five years. Civil Beat.

Friday, May 24, 2019

$100M in federal disaster relief passes U.S. Senate, high marks for state school superintendent, urban Honolulu population drops, Hawaiian Airlines error nets $12 Mainland fares, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (center right) perches on the edge of expanded caldera ©2019 All Hawaii News
 Senate approves disaster funding bill with more than $100M for Big Island, Kauai. A measure that provides nearly $100 million to relocate the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory was approved by the U.S. Senate on Thursday. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii School Superintendent Gets High Marks In Year 2. Christina Kishimoto received a positive evaluation from the state Board of Education. Civil Beat.

The Public Utilities Commission issued a decision and order Thursday to prioritize new regulations designed to lower electricity costs, improve customer service, expand customer choices and cost-effectively meet the state’s clean- energy goals. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu’s Population Fell In 2018. Oahu is getting less crowded while more people are living on the neighbor islands according to 2018 census data. Civil Beat.

Honolulu’s population declined for a 4th consecutive year in 2018. At a time when people are moving to cities in droves, Urban Honolulu appears to be an exception. Hawaii News Now.

Zero-miles flights really were too good to be true. A computer coding error at Hawaiian Airlines led to an online flood of ticket sales Monday. It looked like flights could be purchased for zero HawaiianMiles, with customers paying only the taxes on the fares. KHON2.


Kealoha trial jurors are shown a mailbox and more surveillance video. Prosecutors in the federal conspiracy trial of retired Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his former deputy prosecutor wife, Katherine Kealoha, showed the jury Thursday an actual mailbox and more surveillance video of a person taking the Kealohas’ mailbox. Star-Advertiser.

‘Why Us?’ Homicide Detective Wondered As He Was Assigned To Mailbox Case. Testifying during Day 2 of the Kealoha trial, Dru Akagi said he thought it was a “conflict” to take on a theft case in which his boss the police chief was an alleged victim. Civil Beat.

Homicide detective who helped investigate Kealoha mailbox theft asked ‘Why us?’ A homicide detective who investigated the theft of the Kealohas’ mailbox was among six witnesses who took the stand Thursday in the second day of a public corruption trial against Honolulu’s ex-police chief, his wife and three officers. Hawaii News Now.

KEALOHA TRIAL: "Why us?" Homicide detective takes the stand. KHON2.

Testimony continues as the Kealoha Trial enters Day Two. After her attorney labeled this trial simply a misunderstanding from a fighting family, prosecutors presented evidence they feel showed Katherine Kealoha was the mastermind behind this conspiracy. KITV.


Equipment torched amid conflict over Waimanalo park. An excavator and a bulldozer were set on fire near the entrance of Waimanalo Bay Beach Park, also known as Sherwoods and Sherwood Forest, where preliminary work for a much- protested city project is underway. Star-Advertiser.

Police suspect heavy equipment blaze at controversial development was intentionally set. Honolulu police officials believe heavy-duty machinery that was being used to clear ironwood trees at Sherwood Forest were intentionally set ablaze late Wednesday. Hawaii News Now.

Kailua Beach Park again picked as best in the U.S. Hawaii's Kailua Beach Park has been selected as the best stretch of sand for an annual list of top U.S. public beaches compiled by Florida International University Prof. Stephen Leatherman, also known as "Dr. Beach." Associated Press.

Hawaii Island

Senate Disaster Relief Includes Nearly $70 M For Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Big Island Video News.

Breaking down the budget. Community Forums on Thursday evening hosted a panel of county officials, headed by Mayor Harry Kim, to explain and justify their asks in the wake of a financial calendar year marred by volcanic tragedy, mass transit turmoil and homeless disruption across the island. West Hawaii Today.

Overcrowded Hawaii Community Correctional Center is moving closer to expansion, with the publication Thursday of an anticipated finding of no significant environmental impact for a new building. West Hawaii Today.

The state Department of Public Safety has issued a draft environmental assessment for a new medium-security unit at the Hawaii Community Correctional Center. Tribune-Herald.

3 Hawaii island visitors confirmed to have contracted rat lungworm disease. The state Health Department has received confirmation from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of three unrelated cases of rat lungworm disease diagnosed in visitors to Hawaii Island. Star-Advertiser.


Maui Water Quality Group Settles Injection Well Litigation with County. Attorney for the group, Lance D. Collins says that after over a decade of litigation, the Pukoa o Kama Alliance has agreed to settle its case in exchange for the County’s commitment to continue reducing its reliance on injection wells in South Maui. Maui Now.

An update on the Wailuku Civic Complex will be given by the Maui Redevelopment Agency on Friday, May 24, 2019, in the Planning Department Conference Room at 1 p.m. Maui Now.

Kahului Temperature Hits Record for Fourth Time in Five Days. The National Weather Service reports that the temperature at Kahului Airport on Wednesday, May 22, 2019, reached 96 degrees, breaking the old record of 92 degrees set for that day in 2014. Maui Now.


$11M for wildlife refuge. The Hanalei National Wildlife Refuge is getting federal money for repairs and is one step closer to establishing a new lookout so people can see the restored refuge. Garden Island.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Active hurricane season predicted, Ige seeks to hire top officials, Kealoha trial begins, firefighter killed in crash, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hurricane Iniki NOAA
Hawaii braces for another busy hurricane season. With El Nino conditions expected to persist into the fall, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center is predicting a 70% chance of above-normal tropical cyclone activity during the upcoming hurricane season. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii and the Central Pacific could experience more storms than normal during this year's hurricane season. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted Wednesday there will be five to eight named tropical cyclones in the region from June 1 through Nov. 30. Hawaii Public Radio.

Forecasters warn of above-average 2019 hurricane season in Central Pacific. In a news conference Wednesday, National Weather Service forecasters said they are predicting five to eight tropical cyclones. Hawaii News Now.

NOAA forecast active hurricane season, 5-8 tropical cyclones. This number includes tropical depressions, named storms and hurricanes. A near-normal season has four to five tropical cyclones, and an above-normal season has six or more tropical cyclones. KITV.

Officials: Start preparing now for above-normal hurricane season. Forecasters and government officials on Wednesday urged Hawaii residents to prepare now to weather the effects of a tropical cyclone during hurricane season — which starts June 1 and runs through Nov. 30. Tribune-Herald.

El Nino Will Foster Above-Normal 2019 Hurricane Season, NOAA Predicts. Big Island Video News.

Predictions are for five to eight tropical cyclones in the Central Pacific for the 2019 hurricane season, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Garden Island.

NOAA predicts an 'above normal' hurricane season. KHON2.


State announces job openings with Ige administration. The Governor is seeking forward-thinking team players with a wide range of experiences and expertise. KITV.

UH Lab Gets $77M Contract For Defense Research. Core subjet areas for the Applied Research Laboratory at the University of Hawaii Manoa include ocean science, astronomy, sensor development and renewable energy. Civil Beat.


Kealohas On Trial: Conspiracy Or Just A ‘Conspiracy Theory’? Opening statements kicked off one of the largest public corruption cases in Hawaii history Wednesday, the first of what could be three trials facing the former HPD chief and his prosecutor wife. Civil Beat.

In an hour-long opening statement Wednesday, a federal prosecutor sought to lay the foundation for the public corruption case against former law enforcement power couple Louis and Katherine Kealoha, saying “this story neither begins or ends with a mailbox.” Hawaii News Now.

Kealoha trial begins. The first Honolulu trial in decades involving accusations of corruption by high-ranking public officials began Wednesday with retired Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his former deputy prosecutor wife Katherine Kealoha hoping to convince the jury they did not fake the theft of their mailbox as part of a family fight over money. Star-Advertiser.

The Kealoha trial starts today, get the latest updates here. KHON2.

Opening statements made in Kealoha corruption case, next comes the defense. KITV.


HPU prepares for a big move, which could change the dynamic of Downtown. The state’s largest private university is creating a centralized campus, closer to its dorms at Aloha Tower Marketplace. Hawaii News Now.

New lawsuit filed over deadly Marco Polo fire. Another lawsuit has been filed over the worst high-rise fire in Hawaii’s history. Hawaii News Now.

Kaneohe residents fighting a plan to develop homes near a flood-prone preservation area. The area of Kaneohe behind their homes has a large stream that neighbors say is prone to flooding. KITV.

Airport parking may reach capacity this summer. The Department of Transportation is urging those traveling during the summer to be dropped off at the airport rather than park. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Fatal crash claims life of Hawaii Fire Department veteran. Fatal crash claims life of Hawaii Fire Department veteran. West Hawaii Today.

Firefighter Dies In Highway 190 Vehicle Crash. 49-year-old David Alan Mahon was killed following a three- vehicle collision on Wednesday on Highway 190. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii Island police have identified the man killed in a crash on Highway 190 Wednesday morning. Police said 49-year-old David Alan Mahon was riding his motorcycle on Highway 190 when he was hit by an S.U.V. just after 6:30 a.m. south of the 14-mile marker. Hawaii News Now.


Council adds golf course vouchers, whistle-blower hot-line, more to annual budget. The first round of County Council budget amendments brought treats for West Hawaii, more money for council members to spread around their districts, a whistle-blower program and a discussion about whether the county should spend every cent it collects. West Hawaii Today.

Whistle Blower Program Added To County Budget. During its budget discussion on Wednesday, the Hawaii County Council voted to dip into the fund balance from the previous year to pay for the independent program. Big Island Video News.


DOH shuts down Genki Sushi in Kona due to roach infestation. Multiple complaints of cockroaches at Genki Sushi has prompted the state Department of Health to shut down the chain’s Kona Commons restaurant. West Hawaii Today.

Roach infestation results in temporary closure of Kona sushi restaurant. One customer reported a roach in their bento box. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s second-largest retail property owner, Alexander & Baldwin Inc., wrapped up a recent real estate buying binge with the resort shopping complex Queens’ MarketPlace. Star-Advertiser.


Lotteries were held for applicants of the Waiale Elua workforce housing subdivision. The 70 unit development is located on land north of the Waikapu Gardens subdivision in Central Maui and features three or four bedroom options. Maui Now.

General manager of Mahi Pono resigns. Larry Nixon came aboard in January; Darren Strand to serve as interim GM. Maui News.


Taxable property value rises. In a meeting that lasted less than 10 minutes, the Kauai County Council — missing members KipuKai Kuali’i, Arthur Brun and Felicia Cowden, who were excused — held a hearing Wednesday on proposed amendments to Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami’s 2019-2020 fiscal year budget. Garden Island.

As Crowds Grow, Tourists Will Start Paying to Visit The Most Popular Parks. The Department of Land and Natural Resources also hopes to cut in half the number of daily visitors to Haena State Park and its famed beaches and trails. Civil Beat.

While recovery from April 2018 floods continues on the North Shore, the Westside is looking at severe drought conditions through September. Garden Island.


The beautiful island of Molokai is in dire need of one thing: Medical professionals. For a place most would consider just a sleepy little town, Molokai General Hospital sees a lot of action. Hawaii News Now.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Ige pressured to veto vacation rental tax bill, FBI investigates false tsunami alert, Kealoha trial to begin, Caldwell signs perks for affordable rentals, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii vacation rental ©2019 All Hawaii News
Coalition Pressures Ige To Veto Vacation Rental Bill. A new television ad warns of legitimizing illegal vacation rentals. Civil Beat.

Governor Mulls Passed Bills for Signature or Veto. Governor David Ige has one month to let lawmakers know which bills he intends to veto. His staff is currently reviewing other bills for him to sign or for passage without his signature. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii has seen a 50% jump in tourists since 1989, but spending has remained flat. Last year, the state had a record number of nearly 10 million tourists. That’s a 50 percent jump in 30 years. But spending is unchanged at $18 billion. Hawaii News Now.


PTWC, FBI investigating false tsunami alert over international system. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center is investigating a false tsunami alert that startled some Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.

It was not as widespread as the false ballistic missile threat of last year -- but it was just as fake. Just before 4:30 this afternoon, a false tsunami threat was spread around the world through official channels. KHON2.

Fake Tsunami Report Issued on Fabricated Large Quake. Authorities with the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center are calling an email report that was distributed at around 4:33 p.m., a false tsunami message.   The email appeared to be from an email address at the warning center. Maui Now.


Hawaii among states suing over Trump’s anti-abortion rule. Hawaii Attorney General Clare E. Connors today joined a coalition of 23 cities, states, and municipalities, in filing a lawsuit against a set of revised rules issued by the Trump Administration that the plaintiffs said would allow businesses and individuals to refuse health care on the basis of religious beliefs or moral convictions. Star-Advertiser.

Debate over abortion laws hits the streets of Honolulu with supporters and opponents. Hawaii activists rallied Tuesday both for and against new abortion laws sweeping across states on the mainland. Hawaii News Now.


Kealohas’ trial set to start today. It’s put-up-or-shut-up time for federal prosecutors in the conspiracy trial of retired Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his wife, former Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha. Star-Advertiser.

‘The Mailbox Trial’: Prosecutors prepare to make public corruption case against the Kealohas. In June 2013, a mailbox was plucked from its post in the middle of the night outside then-Police Chief Louis Kealoha’s home in Kahala. Hawaii News Now.

In what would be an unprecedented move, several Honolulu City Council members want to take the Honolulu Police Commission to court over whether the city should pay former Police Chief Louis Kealoha’s legal fees. In what would be an unprecedented move, several Honolulu City Council members want to take the Honolulu Police Commission to court over whether the city should pay former Police Chief Louis Kealoha’s legal fees. Star-Advertiser.


Mayor signs Affordable Rental Housing Bill. Bankers, builders and housing advocates flanked Mayor Kirk Caldwell as he signed the Affordable Rental Housing Bill into law Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Affordable Housing Pilot Program Signed Into Law. A measure to promote the building of affordable rental units in Honolulu is now a law. Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed Bill 7 Tuesday after it passed the City Council earlier this month. Hawaii Public Radio.


It’s Too Soon For A Pedestrian Safety Commission, Council Panel Decides. Honolulu’s transportation chief says the city should first consider a newly released plan to protect pedestrians. Civil Beat.

There’s Still No Word On How Much Honolulu Rail Will Cost —To Ride. Interim service looms next year, but city officials don’t know what the fares will be, and no formal proposals have been made. Civil Beat.

Rezoning preservation land for Kaneohe homes draws community ire. A developer's proposal to turn Kaneohe preservation land into a housing development has cleared key steps toward re-zoning. KHON2.

Dillingham Ranch back on the market. A California company has put Oahu’s Dillingham Ranch up for sale after positioning the 2,721-acre property for subdivision with homes in the face of heated community opposition. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Big boost for nonprofits: Council votes to increase grants to $2.5 million. Hawaii Island nonprofits could soon see a big boost in county grants, thanks to action Tuesday by the County Council. West Hawaii Today.

Why Bikini Islanders Bought Land On The Big Island. The Micronesians have been nomads since the U.S. tested nuclear weapons there in the 1940s and 1950s. Civil Beat.


Power poles at Puna geothermal plant are ‘smoldering’. Four wooden power poles installed by Hawaiian Electric Light Co. a week ago along a new road opened by the Puna Geothermal Venture are “smoldering” due to residual heat from last year’s Kilauea Volcano eruption. Star-Advertiser.

After residual underground heat caused four wooden poles on Puna Geothermal Venture property to smolder, the utility said it will immediately replace them with steel poles. Big Island Video News.


Dolphin swimming ban under final review. Approaching and swimming with Hawaiian spinner dolphins is moving closer to being a thing of the past as federal officials work toward finalizing a rule outlawing the practice that’s created a booming tourism industry in West Hawaii and around the state. West Hawaii Today.

County OKs plans for former Hilo Lanes. The county approved a Hilo businesswoman’s plans to turn the former Hilo Lanes building into a fitness gym and commercial center. Tribune-Herald.


County fears settling injection well case could lead to more suits, fines. Council members want county to settle, pull it from US Supreme Court. Maui News.

Conservation Leadership Program Accepting Applications. Applications are now being accepted for Na Hua Hoohuli i ka Pono, a service-learning program designed to help develop Maui’s next generation of conservation leaders. Maui Now.


Pesticide pushback grows. While Kauai beekeepers celebrated the canceled registration of some pesticides in the Federal Register, some remain concerned about threats to their honey. Garden Island.

Former homeowners sue Bank of America. Three people who lost their homes on Kauai are suing Bank of America for purportedly using deceptive, unethical and illegal business practices to manipulate the outcome of foreclosure auctions. Garden Island.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Hawaii Navy busy in South China Sea, vets irked over CBS tour of secret NSA facility, low-income housing turned over to private partnership, Maui council mulls Clean Water Act settlement, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

PC: U.S. Navy
USS Preble at Pearl Harbor PC: U.S. Navy
Hawaii Navy ships step up operations in South China Sea. The Pearl Harbor destroyer USS Preble on Monday conducted its third “freedom of navigation” operation in the South China Sea since February in what so far has been four such Navy challenges to China’s claims this year. Star-Advertiser.

Bills On Ige’s Desk Could Be ‘Game-Changer’ For Criminal Justice Reform. Laws that cleared the Legislature would open up jails and courts to more scrutiny and give people a better chance at a get-out-of-jail-free card. Civil Beat.

Energy efficiency bill awaits Gov. David Ige’s signature. Hawaii legislators have passed a bill establishing energy efficiency standards for state appliances sold in the state. Star-Advertiser.

A partnership now owns about 1,000 mostly low-income apartments. About 1,000 mainly low-income Hawaii households have a new private landlord after a more than two-year effort by the state to shed a portfolio of affordable rental housing. Star-Advertiser.

Some Hawaii Public Housing Tenants Could Be Evicted Under Trump Proposal. The proposed rule would require HUD to check the immigration status of anyone under 62 who receives public assistance including housing. Civil Beat.

Hawaii ranked high in missing persons cases. Hawaii has the eighth highest rate of missing persons per capita in the nation. There are 8 cases for every 100,000 people who live here. KITV.

U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz hires new chief of staff. U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) has hired Eric Einhorn to serve as his new chief of staff in his Washington D.C. office, replacing Andy Winer. Star-Advertiser.


Jury pool for the Kealoha trial narrowed down to fewer than 50 people. The final cut to 12 jurors and 4 alternates will happen Wednesday when attorneys exercise their right to eliminate jurors they are concerned about. Hawaii News Now.

Kunia veterans feel ignored, shocked after CBS News gets a tour of top secret NSA facility. CBS News got a rare view of NSA Hawaii in Wahiawa, which opened in 2012. It keeps an eye over America’s adversaries like China. Hawaii News Now.

Owners in one of Hawaii’s most exclusive condos sue over construction defects. There are at least 120 different construction defects at one of Hawaii’s most exclusive condominium towers, according to a lawsuit filed by property owners at the tower -- and a shortage in skilled building laborers may be at least partially to blame. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Assessors with a national accreditation organization gave the Hawaii Police Department a positive report with some suggestions during a mock assessment in April. West Hawaii Today.

Apparently, it’s not how the county spends the money, it’s how it raises the money. A public hearing on the 2019-20 budget drew little interest Monday, but 70% more property owners are appealing their assessments than last year. West Hawaii Today.

Waimea Nui Regional Government Proposal Sparks Discussion. On Monday, a Hawaiian Homes Commissioner went back and forth with a testifier who said she opposed the planned Waimea Nui Homestead Regional Government charter. Big Island Video News.

Time could be running out for the University of the Nations Kona to develop 62 acres once envisioned for affordable housing, a cultural center and an educational facility off Kuakini Highway. West Hawaii Today.

Coral submerged in the typically crowded Kahaluu Bay is amid a reprieve from human traffic, which began Monday morning and continues through today. The purpose of the county-imposed closure is to allow for a coral spawning event scientists predicted was most likely to occur on those two days. West Hawaii Today.

Kilauea could take a decade-plus break, expert says. While Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists are predicting Kilauea’s caldera could erupt “within a few years,” at least one independent expert suggests the volcano might not come to life for perhaps a decade if Hawaii’s undersea volcano, Loihi, is a guide. Star-Advertiser.


Maui Lawmakers Consider Settlement in Clean Water Act Lawsuit. Members of the Maui County Council on Monday considered a settlement offer in the case of a county wastewater facility. The case is currently scheduled to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court. Hawaii Public Radio.

Iwi kupuna laws scrutinized by Native Hawaiians. Native Hawaiians gathered for two days on Maui to commemorate the 30th anniversary marking the discovery of 1,200 sets of remains at Honokahua Bay. Hawaii News Now.

County jobless rate at 2.8% in month of April. Hawaii was one of 12 states with unemployment below 3 percent. Maui News.

Twenty attorneys who provided free legal information and 10 court navigators who helped direct courthouse visitors were recognized for their volunteer service that assisted hundreds of people last year. Maui News.


EMS stronger together. The mayor was joined by Kauai Council Chair Arryl Kaneshiro with a similar proclamation as Kauai joined the nation in observing National EMS Week that started Sunday and runs through Friday. Garden Island.

Kauai vehicle sales hold steady. There are signs that the market is running out of steam, according to the outlook sponsored by the Hawaii Automobile Dealers Association. Garden Island.