Sunday, September 29, 2019

Repairs coming to Diamond Head summit, Waimanalo park opponents file lawsuit, feds pan Honolulu rail property purchases, Mauna Kea telescope decommissioning delayed, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Visitors crowd Diamond Head summit ©2019 All Hawaii News
State to demolish crumbling tower at Diamond Head State Monument. A year ago, the state Land Department started getting reports of the crumbling tower. Hawaii News Now.


Opponents of Sherwood Forest construction threaten further legal action at rally in Waimanalo. An attorney for a group that opposes the city’s plan to develop a portion of Waimanalo Bay Beach Park said today he plans further legal action, including filing for an injunction to stop the project and for relief to get it returned to its pre-construction condition. Star-Advertiser.

Waimanalo Park Opponents Are Settling In For A Long Fight. Protesters returned to the site just two days after being arrested by police for blocking access to the area. Civil Beat.

More than a hundred turn out to support lawsuit to stop controversial park development in Waimanalo. Protesters lined the entrance to Waimanalo Bay Beach Park, also known as “Sherwood Forest,” Saturday morning. Hawaii News Now.

Protectors at Sherwoods in Waimanalo file federal lawsuit against the City. Those opposed to construction of a new playing field at Waimanalo Bay Beach Park, also known as Sherwoods, have filed a lawsuit against the City to stop the project. KHON2.

Protester arrested in Sherwood Forest confrontation says Mayor's plan is not compromise. Pilialoha Callahan says the fight over Sherwood Forest isn't over. KITV.


Duane ‘Dog’ Chapman says he was diagnosed with pulmonary embolism. Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman has announced he was diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism earlier this month, and is undergoing treatment. Hawaii News Now.


Mayor Caldwell’s approval ratings drop to all-time low. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s approval numbers continue to slip to new lows as he approaches his final year in office — probably not exactly what a guy who is expected to run for governor in 2020 would want to see. Star-Advertiser.


HART overpaid some property owners and shortchanged others. The Honolulu rail authority apparently shortchanged 16 tenants or property owners who were relocated to make way for the city’s 20-mile rail line, and made overpayments or ineligible payments to 28 other property owners, according to an intensive federal review of Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation relocation records. Star-Advertiser.

Feds Say Honolulu Rail’s Relocation Payments Are A Mess And Must Be Redone. HART first self-reported its “potential problems” last year. A new federal report shows just how bad those violations actually were. Civil Beat.

FTA: Honolulu rail project botched program to relocate homes, businesses. The federal government says the city’s $9 billion rail project botched its program to relocate homes and businesses along the route. Hawaii News Now.


Kapiolani Boulevard is becoming a magnet for new hotel projects. No one is redrawing the edge of Waikiki, but a growing number of planned hotel projects on Kapiolani Boulevard promise to stretch the primary urban zone for vacation accommodations on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

OCCC guard, deputy sheriff will not be prosecuted in fatal shootings. The state Department of Public Safety had zero fatal shootings in the past 10 years until Feb. 18, when a deputy sheriff shot in the back a small, disabled, homeless man who had been drinking beer at the state Capitol rotunda. Star-Advertiser.

Power bills topping $1,000 draw ire of residents at gated West Oahu community. Residents in a gated Ewa Beach community are demanding answers after they were hit with shockingly high electricity bills this month. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Board votes to leave UH-Hilo observatory in place — for now. The University of Hawaii’s Maunakea Management Board on Friday voted against decommissioning the former site of an educational telescope on Maunakea until there is a firm plan to reinstall the telescope elsewhere in Hawaii. Tribune-Herald.

Mauna Kea Board Fails To Advance Hoku Kea Telescope Decommissioning. The board did not approve a Notice of Intent to Decommission the small, educational telescope on Mauna Kea, although the TMT permit requires it to come down. Big Island Video News.

Mauna Kea CSO Decommissioning Update. The CSO Decommissioning Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment, and Hazardous Materials Report, have been approved by the Mauna Kea Management Board. Big Island Video News.


Barry Taniguchi: ‘He had a tremendous amount of love and aloha for the community’. Since the passing of Barry Taniguchi on Sept. 20, plaudits for the late chairman and CEO of KTA Super Stores and condolences to his family have poured in from leaders of Hawaii’s business, government, health care, education and nonprofit sectors. Tribune-Herald.

Tour companies in Kona try to curb use of full-face snorkel mask. As concerns rise about the safety of full-face snorkel masks, more and more Hawaii Island tour companies are following the example of their island neighbors by banning the use of the masks on their boats. West Hawaii Today.


Kahului Airport Ranked “Dead Last” in US for Traveler Satisfaction. Kahului Airport has the lowest satisfaction rating compared to similar-sized airports nationwide. That's according to a study from global marketing company J.D. Power, which ranked Kahului Airport last on a list of 16 “medium” airports throughout the country. Maui Now.

Pineapple perseveres on small farms on the Valley Isle.  It’s easy to see Hawaii’s connection to pineapple farming at Maui’s main airport, where plush toys, picture frames, candy and other items made in the oblong fruit’s image are for sale along with three-packs of the real thing for $29.95. Star-Advertiser.

Maui Emergency Management Agency Accidentally Calls County Residents. The Maui Emergency Management Agency accidentally called thousands of county residents from a (999) 999-9999 number shortly before 9 a.m. today. Hawaii Public Radio.

S. Maui families deal with flooded homes, debris. Families in a Maui Meadows neighborhood were dealing Saturday with the aftermath of a localized storm that dumped 1 to 2 inches of rain per hour over the area a day before, leaving homes flooded and debris in yards and on streets. Maui News.


Maverick: ‘We want to be good neighbors’. Maverick Helicopters wants to spell out its side of a controversy surrounding aerial tours it started last year out of a small airstrip adjacent to the salt beds in Hanapepe. Garden Island.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Caldwell kills Waimanalo sports complex plan after 28 protesters arrested, executive pleads guilty to bribing Schofield managers, OHA paid $39k to help Thirty Meter Telescope opponents, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Waimanalo Beach PC:Drums600 via Wikipedia
Caldwell Tweets: 'We Are Not Building Sports Complex In Waimanalo'. In the wake of the arrest of 28 protesters Thursday blocking access to Waimanalo Bay Beach Park that officials wanted to redevelop, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell tweeted the city won't build a sports complex planned in the Sherwood Forest area. Associated Press.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell defends plans for Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo after police arrest of 28 protesters. Mayor Kirk Caldwell said today that he respects First Amendment rights after 28 demonstrators were arrested at Waimanalo Beach Park, but he accused the protestors of blocking other community members from accessing the park. Star-Advertiser.

Protesters blocking police and a construction vehicle at the Waimanalo forest cited concerns about culture and overdevelopment issues. More than two dozen protesters blocking police and construction equipment for a contentious renovation project at Waimanalo Bay Beach Park were arrested Thursday morning after a two-hour peaceful standoff on the access road to the park. Star-Advertiser.

Police Arrest 28 Protesters Blocking Construction At Waimanalo Park. The protesters sang and chanted as they passively resisted the officers.  Civil Beat.

City pledges to press forward with controversial Waimanalo park project despite arrests. Officers arrested 28 people Thursday who were blocking construction equipment and crews from accessing a Waimanalo park, where a controversial $32 million redevelopment project is underway. Hawaii News Now.

HPD arrests 28 Sherwood Forest protestors in Waimanalo. Twenty-eight protestors were arrested at the entrance to Waimanalo Bay Beach Park on Thursday, Sept. 26 amid the Sherwood Forest protest. KHON2.

Over 2 dozen arrested after demonstrators block construction crews from accessing Sherwood Forest. Demonstrators were out in Waimanalo protesting Thursday morning. KITV.


Hawaii saw more visitor arrivals and tourism spending in August than last year. Total visitor arrivals and spending rose again statewide in August, which was only the third month both categories have been up since November. Star-Advertiser.

165 Duty Free Hawaii employees will be laid off. DFS Hawaii began the process of cutting down their workforce by deciding on Thursday, Sept. 26, to lay off 165 employees, according to the company. KHON2.

DFS Hawaii laying off 165 workers amid international visitor market declines. DFS Hawaii, which has operated in Hawaii since 1962 and employs 660 people, began taking steps to reduce a quarter of its workforce today in one of the biggest layoffs of the state’s softer tourism cycle. Star-Advertiser.

DFS Hawaii lays off 165 amid decline in tourism from Asia. Retailer DFS Hawaii laid off 165 employees Thursday from three of its Hawaii locations, citing losses due to a softening international travel market. Hawaii News Now.


Some Principals Can Still Earn More Than Top DOE Officials. Civil Beat’s public employee salary database now includes 22,395 employees of the Hawaii Department of Education. Civil Beat.

Ige Picks Environmental Director To Lead Energy Office. As chief executive officer of the Hawaii State Energy Office, Scott Glenn will play an important role in achieving the state’s renewable energy goals. Civil Beat.

Ige Taps Glenn to lead State Energy Office. Big Island Now.


Executive pleads guilty to bribing Schofield managers in exchange for contracts. John Winslett admitted giving thousands of dollars in goods, weapons and a vehicle to the managers of the Schofield firing range in return for about $19 million in contracts to improve and maintain the range.  Hawaii News Now.

City Council Bill To Increase Trespass Fines Headed To Public Hearing. A Honolulu City Council committee approved a public hearing for a bill that will increase fines for people who illegally enter watershed areas. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu Windfarm Seeking Increase In Authorized Bat Deaths. Kawailoa Wind, LLC, has been operating five miles north of Haleiwa since 2012. The company is asking regulators to increase the number of endangered species it can legally kill by its presence. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hefty Property Fine? Honolulu Will Happily Settle For 10%. City officials say they’re less interested in raising money than in getting property owners to comply, so are willing to take much less when the violation is corrected. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Office Of Hawaiian Affairs Has Spent $39K To Support Activists On Mauna Kea. The state Attorney General’s office has subpoenaed the information on OHA’s support for demonstrators against the Thirty Meter Telescope. Civil Beat.

Police Are Giving TMT Opponents Space For Negotiations, AG Says. A new poll shows "most voters now oppose the idea of using force to reopen Mauna Kea Access Road to allow construction to move forward". Big Island Video News.

Speakers talk food access, self-reliance at summit. More than a hundred Big Island farmers, gardeners, officials and more gathered in Hilo Thursday for the second annual Hawaii Island Community Food Summit. Tribune-Herald.


Pulama Lanai proposing 200-acre industrial park. LUC to review project's environmental assessment. Maui News.

Bail money returned to Maui officer accused of abuse of power, misconduct. The Maui Police Department charged Officer Brandon Saffeels with hindering prosecution and tampering with a witness, but the Maui Prosecutor’s Office declined charges. Hawaii News Now.

Maui teachers say pay not enough with the cost of living. Housing an issue, some work two jobs. Maui News.


‘The Hanapepe Massacre Mystery’. A new documentary by Kauai native, former journalist and Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Stephanie J. Castillo will launch Saturday with a video shoot of researchers searching for the Hanapepe site where 16 Filipino sugarcane workers were believed to have been buried in an unmarked grave in 1924. Garden Island.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

DOE fumbles education impact fees, HECO seeks greenhouse gas cap changes, cop pleads guilty for role in forcing man to lick urinal, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News All rights reserved
Hawaii school ©2019 All Hawaii News
Audit: Over a decade, DOE has collected just $5M in school impact fees. Over a decade ago, the state Education Department was given the authority to set up developer fees in areas where significant residential growth is expected. Hawaii News Now.

Public safety trainer a ‘no show’ at hearing to question her qualifications. The controversial head of training for more than a thousand state deputy sheriffs and adult correctional officers did not show up Wednesday for a hearing to defend her qualifications. Hawaii News Now.

Court Affirms Ethics Panel Ruling On Rowena Akana. The former OHA trustee was penalized for multiple ethical violations. Civil Beat.


HECO wants to modify greenhouse gas caps. Hawaiian Electric Co. wants to combine the annual greenhouse emissions caps for 13 power plants in Hawaii, a move some believe would allow Hawaii’s lone coal-fired power plant to increase greenhouse gas emissions. Star-Advertiser.

Report: Climate Change Is Hurting Oceans — And Us — More Than Expected. The first ocean-specific report by a prestigious international panel underscores the urgency of taking action now to reduce carbon emissions and limit global warming. Civil Beat.

Time is running out for Hawaii's share of federal disaster mitigation funds. Now is the chance for residents to alert emergency planners of potential problems in their communities. KITV.

This Facebook Campaign Is Teaching Tourists How To Behave In Hawaii. Officials believe visitors will follow local customs if they simply understand them. Civil Beat.


Kaiser Permanente reaches tentative contract covering 85,000 workers. Kaiser Permanente said Wednesday it reached a tentative agreement on a new four-year contract with unions for 85,000 of the health care giant’s workers, averting a potential strike planned for next month. West Hawaii Today.

Kaiser, nurses OK tentative contract. Kaiser Permanente has reached a tentative agreement on a national, four-year contract with the union representing nearly 1,000 Hawaii nurses. Star-Advertiser.


Young Brothers propose rate increase; what this could mean for consumers. Young Brothers, one of the state’s largest shipping companies, is asking regulators to allow it to raise its revenue by $27 million, a rate of 34 percent overall rate increase. KHON2.

AG Fights Proposed Changes to SNAP Food Assistance Program. Hawaiʻi Attorney General Clare Connors joined a coalition of 24 Attorneys General in opposing proposed changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP. Maui Now.


Co-defendant: Officer accused of forcing homeless man to lick urinal has done it before. A Honolulu police officer who’s accused of forcing a homeless man to lick a public urinal to avoid arrest had done it before, according to a former Honolulu officer who pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to trying to cover up the alleged 2018 incident. Hawaii News Now.

Ex-Cop Pleads Guilty To Role In Forcing Man To Lick Urinal. Another Honolulu police officer has pleaded not guilty in the case. Civil Beat.

HPD officer agrees to testify against fellow officer in urinal licking case. One of the HPD officers accused in the case of a man forced to lick a public restroom urinal has agreed to testify against the other officer. KHON2.

Homeless man forced to lick urinal: Former HPD officer pleads guilty for failing to report incident. Reginald Ramones John Rabago were indicted back in April for depriving a man of his civil rights. KITV.


Honolulu Is Slashing Crosswalks As It Touts Pedestrian Friendly Policies. The city has plans to remove 45 crosswalks deemed unsafe instead of making them safer. But pedestrians can still legally cross at those spots. Civil Beat.

Ala Moana seeks 400-foot height limit. The new majority owner of Ala Moana Center wants to take the state’s largest shopping mall to a higher level. Star-Advertiser.

Kealoha Corruption Probe Is Why Honolulu Is Paying A Mainland Law Firm To Fight The Feds. Federal agents seized a “very broad” set of emails in connection with an investigation that is now before a grand jury, according to Honolulu City Council member Ron Menor. Civil Beat.

Keep The Change: Honolulu Won’t Try To Recover Almost $100,000 It Overpaid Workers. Despite a state law that says governments “shall” recover overpayments, Human Resources Director Carolee Kubo says it’s too late and, besides, the city made the mistake. Civil Beat.

A majority of Hawaii voters polled believe homelessness has gotten worse. A majority of registered Hawaii voters across all islands believe homelessness has gotten “worse” over the last year — but they’re split on whether homeless sweeps are “worthwhile,” according to the Honolulu Star- Advertiser’s Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

Caldwell feeling confident of financing toward rail. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell is adamant that the city’s financial picture is in good shape and that warnings raised by opponents that the now $9.2 billion East Kapolei-to-Ala Moana Center rail project will drive the city into bankruptcy are unfounded. Star-Advertiser.

City's Share Of $772M Blaisdell Redevelopment Cost Still Unclear. The city is planning a major $772 million redevelopment of the landmark Neal S. Blaisdell Center in partnership with the private sector but the city's share of the cost remains unclear. Hawaii Public Radio.

North Shore 'Overcapacity' Says Honolulu Council Member. Honolulu City Council Member Heidi Tsuneyoshi made the assessment on Tuesday at a hearing covering North Shore issues. Hawaii Public Radio.

Crews left with 5 tons of garbage (and counting) after Diamond Head sweep. Crews worked through the rain Wednesday morning to start clearing a massive homeless camp that had taken over a large part of the beach below Diamond Head. Hawaii News Now.

Build the Track LLC holds press conference to announce vision for new motorsports facility. Build the Track LLC held a press conference earlier today to discuss their vision for the future of Hawaii motorsports, including the possibility of a new race facility on Oahu. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Puna nonprofit contracted to help those recovering from 2018 eruption with still unmet needs. Neighborhood Place of Puna was awarded a case management contract to help individuals and families recovering from the 2018 eruption of Kilauea volcano address still unmet needs. Tribune-Herald.

Largest Cruise Ship Ever To Make Kailua-Kona Port Call Anchors Sunday. The average cruise ship that calls on Kona typically has 2,500 passengers. But this one will have 4,000. Big Island Video News.

Kailua-Kona to welcome largest cruise ship to ever make a port call in the bay. The Department of Land and Natural Resources announced today that the largest cruise ship to ever make a port call to Kailua-Kona will anchor in Kailua Bay on Sunday. Star-Advertiser.

Public servant, medical miracle and island treasure Virginia Isbell remembered. Virginia Isbell, a former politician, public servant and pillar of the Kona community, died Sept. 19 on Oahu. She was 87. West Hawaii Today.


Family, Friends Mourn Loss of Danny Mateo, Longtime Maui Councilmember and Former County Clerk. Longtime Maui County Councilmember from Molokai and recently retired County Clerk, Danny Mateo, died Tuesday in the company of family members. Maui Now.

Supreme Court’s appeal of injection well case in murky waters on Maui. Members of the Maui County Council majority and their attorneys insist it is over. Mayor Michael Victorino and attorneys with the county’s Department of the Corporation Counsel say otherwise. Star-Advertiser.

Hui files complaint over water levels from Waihee River. State hydrologist says stream flows are being met. Maui News.


Malama Pono opens new clinic. Malama Pono Health Services is hosting a grand opening of its new clinic from 3 to 5:30 p.m. today. Garden Island.

Annual Kauai County vehicle and equipment auction begins. County officials today announced that its annual vehicle and equipment auction begins Wednesday, Sept. 25. KHON2.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Ige's approval rating tanks in poll as more voters oppose Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea, flag flap at Keaau high school, Honolulu council seeks corruption audit, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaiian cultural practitioners on Mauna Kea ©2019 All Hawaii News
Public support for TMT drops sharply, according to a new Honolulu Star-Advertiser poll. Public support for the Thirty Meter Telescope has declined sharply after more than two months of peaceful but determined protests on Mauna Kea, and most voters now oppose the idea of using force to reopen Mauna Kea Access Road to allow construction to move forward, according to a new Honolulu Star- Advertiser poll. Star-Advertiser.

Ige’s job approval rating tanks amid TMT debacle. Gov. David Ige’s job approval rating has sunk to a new low amid the ongoing standoff over the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea, though Hawaii voters have an even lower opinion of the Legislature. Star-Advertiser.


Tulsi Gabbard Earns Spot In October Debate. The Hawaii congresswoman will be back on the stage after missing the September debate. Civil Beat.

Audit: DOE misses millions in revenue. State auditors found that the Hawaii Department of Education has failed to collect millions of dollars in fees over the past decade and has no written policies or procedures in place to implement the process necessary to do so in the future. Garden Island.

Frustration, Desperation As Teachers Convene To Discuss Pay Issues. Consultants hired by the Hawaii Department of Education are meeting with educators around the state, seeking ways to improve compensation. On the first night they heard from many barely hanging on. Hawaii Public Radio.


Police commissioner calls out city council during talk on public corruption scandal. Honolulu city council members want an audit done of local law enforcement agencies including the Honolulu Police Department, prosecuting attorney’s office and the ethics commission. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu officer charged with failure to report in urinal licking case. A Honolulu police officer has been charged with covering up for another officer in a case that involved forcing a homeless man to lick a public urinal. Hawaii News Now.

FBI raid of city records tied to Kealoha case, lawyers say. Members of a Honolulu City Council committee were told Tuesday that a raid of city computer servers earlier this year involved emails apparently tied to the federal corruption case that centered around former Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his wife, former Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Katherine Kealoha. Star-Advertiser.

Another Candidate Running For Manahan’s Council Seat. Jacob Aki is currently chief of staff to the Senate majority leader. Civil Beat.

Councilmembers question affordability of $773 million Blaisdell makeover. County lawmakers pressed for answers today on whether the city can afford to take on a $773 million redevelopment of Honolulu’s Neal S. Blaisdell Center. KHON2.

How much of the Blaisdell’s redevelopment will taxpayers pay for? The city isn’t sure. The city say plans for the projected $772 million redevelopment of the aging Blaisdell Center are moving along, and officials are working to secure a public private partnership for the project. Hawaii News Now.

Rent high? Don't blame short term rentals said expert. Oahu's shortage and higher costs of housing have been blamed on illegal short term rentals, but expects said that is not the case. KITV.

Chinatown Neighborhood Board Chair wants city to pack yellow bag rule. The Downtown-Chinatown rule for businesses to use new thick yellow trash bags isn’t popular among some in the community. KHON2.

Slopes of Diamond Head cleared of squatters in 2-week-long sweep.  After months of complaints, squatters are being forced off of the Diamond Head State Monument. Hawaii News Now.

Group elaborates on ideas to fix Koko Crater Trail. A non-profit group revealed its $100,00 plan to temporarily fix the dilapidated Koko Crater Trail. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Keaau High causes social media backlash after telling students not to wear flags as clothing. Officials at Keaau High School caused a stir online Monday after telling students not to wear Hawaiian Kingdom or Hawaii state flags on campus. Tribune-Herald.

Honua Ola gets go-ahead to drill deeper. The state Department of Health granted approval to Honua Ola Bioenergy, formerly known as Hu Honua Bioenergy, to drill three underground injection control wells to 800 feet at its power plant under construction at Pepeekeo. Tribune-Herald.

Is Aina Lea finally ready to be built? A South Kohala developer says it is moving forward with the Town of Aina Lea, while the county is reminding the company that all requirements must be met should the long-delayed project actually want to get off the ground. West Hawaii Today.


Molina Addresses ‘Crisis-Level’ Affordable Housing Need. Councilmember Michael J. Molina has a new plan that might expand affordable housing opportunities for Maui families. Maui Now.

2 Dolphins Euthanized After Stranding On Maui Beach. There was another mass stranding in the same area less than a month ago. Civil Beat.

Two More Stranded Whales Euthanized Near Maui Beach. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists euthanized two pygmy killer whales Tuesday after the mammals stranded themselves on Sugar Beach in Kihei, Maui. Hawaii Public Radio.

Two whales in separate pod euthanized after Sugar Beach stranding. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration confirmed that two pygmy killer whales stranded at Kihei’s Sugar Beach on Tuesday morning had to be euthanized based on their health. Maui News.

Two Stranded Whales Euthanized, Second Stranding Incident in Recent Weeks. Maui Now.

Wildlife officials euthanize 2 whales that were stranded on Maui beach. Hawaii News Now.

NOAA Fisheries responds to stranded pygmy killer whales near Sugar Beach. NOAA Fisheries responded to two pygmy killer whales (a member of the oceanic dolphin family) stranded on shore near Sugar Beach, Maui on Tuesday. KITV.

ABC Stores to build distribution center in Maui Lani Village. Owner purchases 40,000-square-foot lot for about $2M. Maui News.

A&B seeks 30-year water lease. It would allow EMI to divert water from East Maui streams. Maui News.


Mayor heads delegation to Japan. A contingent from Kauai led by Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami is headed on a good-will mission to Japan. Garden Island.

Council to meet today. Among the agenda items, it will consider a resolution to accept a public access easement to Kauapea Beach. Garden Island.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Thousands dropped from state Medicaid rolls, AG won't prosecute sheriff who killed homeless man at Capitol, Menor ponders mayoral bid, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Coral reef off the Big Island ©2019 All Hawaii News
Pacific heat wave threatens Hawaii’s iconic coral reefs. At the edge of an ancient lava flow where jagged black rocks meet the Pacific, small off-the-grid homes overlook the calm blue waters of Papa Bay on Hawaii’s Big Island — no tourists or hotels in sight. Here, one of the islands’ most abundant and vibrant coral reefs thrives just below the surface. Associated Press.

Record heat: People swelter, reefs suffer. A major marine heat wave is responsible for a triple-digit number of record high heat days in Hawaii this summer, according to the National Weather Service. Tribune-Herald.


Thousands Dropped From Hawaii’s Medicaid Coverage After Data Review. Real-time data collection and a better economy could be behind a significant drop in Medicaid health insurance enrollment, but some health workers are concerned. Civil Beat.

Why No One Knows How Many Green Energy Jobs Exist In Hawaii. Hawaii’s shift to renewable energy was meant to trigger an explosion of new jobs, but officials aren’t closely tracking employment in the sector. Civil Beat.


How much should teachers in Hawaii get paid? And how much is enough to keep them around? Hawaii's Department of Education hosted its first listening sessions Monday night: one at 4pm and then at 6pm. KITV.

WalletHub: Hawaii Teacher Salary Goes Least Furthest In US. The state has the lowest teacher salary when adjusted for cost of living, according to the personal finance website. Civil Beat.


Attorney General won’t prosecute sheriff behind deadly state Capitol shooting. The Attorney General’s office has decided not to criminally prosecute a state sheriff who shot and killed a man at the state Capitol. Hawaii News Now.

AG Won’t Press Charges Against Deputy Sheriff In Capitol Shooting. The state Attorney General’s office found insufficient evidence to press charges over the February shooting of a homeless man. Civil Beat.

State Attorney General calls for background checks on ammunition purchases. Hawaii Attorney General Clare Connors joined 20 other Attorneys General Monday urging Congress to support a gun control measure. Hawaii News Now.

Increased use of air conditioning drives up demand for electricity, resulting in higher bills. Hawaiian Electric, which provides electricity to Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii island, said Monday that the uptick in demand, in turn, has been showing up in the form of higher bills, even for those who have private rooftop solar systems. Star-Advertiser.


State, tourism agencies fund effort to reduce chronic Waikiki homelessness. The Institute for Human Services has kicked off a program to reduce the chronically homeless population in Waikiki, the epicenter of the state’s tourism economy. Star-Advertiser.

Ron Menor Raising Cash For Possible Mayoral Bid. The Honolulu City Council member calls the fundraiser exploratory. Civil Beat.


Caldwell Defends the State of Honolulu's Finances In Face of Rail Costs. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell sought to reassure the public on Monday that the city has enough money to cover the operational costs of the controversial rail project. Hawaii Public Radio.

FTA Won’t Confirm ‘High Praise’ For HART. The Honolulu rail agency says its federal partners are “extremely impressed” with how the project’s going, but the feds will only point to key steps that still need to happen. Civil Beat.

High-ranking DLNR officer stripped of police powers after crash reveals misconduct. A high-ranking Department of Land and Natural Resources officer has been relieved of his police duties pending an investigation into a recent crash involving his state patrol car. Hawaii News Now.

Mysteries Surround Pay For Top Staffers At Prominent Honolulu Rehab. Why did Sand Island Treatment Center report much higher salaries in its tax returns than in bids for state contracts? The rehab won’t say. Civil Beat.

Anticipated renewal of construction prompts rally in Waimanalo. Opponents of stalled plans to build new park facilities in Waimanalo rallied Monday morning at Sherwood Forest in anticipation that construction at the site soon would resume. Star-Advertiser.

Waimanalo Sports Field Protest Flares Again. Inspired by the Mauna Kea protests, residents opposed to the beach park project say they plan to block construction equipment. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Council approves funds for Waiakea Stream flood channel repairs. The Hawaii County Council approved $1 million in funding toward a project to repair damage to the Waiakea Stream flood channel caused by Hurricane Lane last year. Tribune-Herald.

An update on the Thirty Meter Telescope project was recently posted to the Canadian Astronomical Society website, providing a glimpse of how Canadian astronomers involved in the observatory view the ongoing standoff on Mauna Kea. The CATAC chair says "there is effectively an indefinite moratorium on construction" and that the "only path to TMT construction in Hawai’i is through negotiation". Big Island Video News.

Puakea Ranch draft EA finds no impact. A Hawi property that has been the subject of more than $100,000 worth of fines and a lawsuit by Hawaii County has applied for a special permit from the county to host events such as weddings and to increase vacation rental occupancy. West Hawaii Today.


Hilo veterans home hit by scabies outbreak. Visitors to the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo are being limited as the facility works to address an outbreak of scabies. Tribune-Herald.

A scabies outbreak has been reported at a veterans home on Hawaii Island. Now the Hilo facility is taking action to prevent it from spreading. Hawaii News Now.

Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo experiences scabies outbreak. According to Avalon Healthcare which manages Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home, the home has experienced an outbreak of scabies and is currently working to 'mitigate' the outbreak. KITV.


Waikapu Country Town gets long-awaited approval. Now, developer says, the real work begins. In 2004, when he first bought 2,000 acres in Waikapu that included the Maui Tropical Plantation, affordable housing developer Mike Atherton envisioned an entire community of homes and services that would bring back the Waikapu town of old. Maui News.

EMI Submits Draft EIS for 30-Year Water Lease to Mahi Pono. The DEIS is for a long-term, 30-year, water lease which would allow a continued supply of water through the EMI system to Mahi Pono’s farm lands in Central Maui and other water users served by EMI including approximately 35,000 upcountry Maui residents served by the Maui County water system. Maui Now.


Hale Opio plans to focus on mindfulness programs, continue outreach. Since 1975, Hale Opio has helped more than 10,000 island youth and families. Garden Island.

Kauai makes CNN's list of Top 10 most beautiful islands. Spin the globe, pick a spot and odds are good you'll alight on the color blue: 71% of the Earth's surface is covered with water. KITV.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Residents unhappy with state officials in poll, Ellison plans $340M Lanai project, Taniguchi dies, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii Capitol ©2019 All Hawaii News
Most Hawaii residents say state elected officials don’t care about them. A majority of Hawaii residents say the state is moving in the wrong direction and expressed little confidence in the state’s elected officials, a new Honolulu Star-Advertiser poll shows. Star-Advertiser.

Money the state budgeted for educational composting programs is given to an engineering company. Over the summer, eight public school principals wrote cover letters for what they thought was an application for grants to run their school composting programs. Star-Advertiser.

Tour operators start ban on full-face snorkel masks. The Pride of Maui, a company that offers snorkel tours and cruises, has recently announced it will no longer allow the use of full-face snorkel masks on its catamarans due to safety concerns. Star-Advertiser.

Is This The New Normal? Hawaii Wrestles With Record Heat. Climatologists are frustrated by the lack of action in response to manmade global warming, but there are some simple solutions that could provide relief. Civil Beat.


University professor apologizes for making ‘inappropriate’ remarks. A University of Hawaii professor apologized Sunday for comments about the quality of education at Kamehameha Schools that he made during a symposium on the Thirty Meter Telescope. Star-Advertiser.

UH professor behind controversial comments against Kamehameha schools apologizes. The UH professor at the center of controversial comments against Kamehameha Schools has issued an apology. Hawaii News Now.


Council won’t pay for HART employees’ lawyers. Rail authority employees who have been subpoenaed as part of an ongoing federal criminal investigation into Honolulu’s train project will each have to hire their own lawyer if they think they need one, according to Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation Executive Director Andrew Robbins. Star-Advertiser.

City lawyers admit Council passed erroneous bill. A Honolulu City Council measure approving more money for a controversial and mysterious city contract with a California-based law firm contains erroneous information, a situation that could force Council members to redo their vote. Star-Advertiser.

DHHL Offers 37 Kapolei Homes To Native Hawaiian Beneficiaries. In an effort to reduce a long wait list for homestead lots, the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands offered 37 "turn-key" homes in Kapolei to native Hawaiian beneficiaries, the agency announced Saturday. Hawaii Public Radio.

Developer seeks record $35M for planned Kapiolani penthouse. The developer of the planned Mandarin Oriental Hotel and Residences tower announced Thursday that it intends to offer a penthouse for $35 million among 99 residential units that start at $3.5 million. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

KTA CEO Barry Taniguchi dead at 72. “The Taniguchi family would like share that Barry K. Taniguchi passed away Friday at The Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu, due to medical complications,” his family said in a statement to the Tribune-Herald earlier today. Tribune-Herald.

Chairman and C.E.O. of KTA Super Stores Barry Taniguchi dies. According to the company, the 72-year-old died of cardiac arrest Friday night. Hawaii News Now.

Remembering Barry Taniguchi. A generational community staple has passed away. KHON2.

Hawaii Leaders Issue Statements On Death Of Barry Taniguchi. Big Island Video News.

CEO of KTA Super Stores Dies. Barry K. Taniguchi, board chairman and CEO of KTA Super Stores, died Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, at The Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu as a result of medical complications. Big Island Video News.

KTA Superstores CEO, Barry Taniguchi, dies. Many are mourning the loss of a major community leader. Barry Taniguchi, the CEO and board chair of KTA Super Stores. KITV.


County receives extension for Highway 132 work. The Hawaii County Department of Public Works has received a three-month extension from the Federal Highway Administration to complete reconstruction of Highway 132 in lower Puna, although the department anticipates work will be finished well before the new deadline. Tribune-Herald.

PGV officials discuss ongoing facility repairs at meeting. Puna Geothermal Venture is continuing its work toward recovery, plant officials said during a community meeting Wednesday afternoon in Pahoa. Tribune-Herald.

Big Island wind farm allowed ‘incidental take’ of 3 endangered species. Pakini Nui Wind Farm operator Tawhiri Power LLC’s request for incidental take of three endangered species has been been approved by state and federal officials. West Hawaii Today.

DHHL lets delinquent lease swell to $242,000. The state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands for years allowed a Big Island man to make sporadic lease payments on a parcel in Hilo, with the past due amount eventually growing to six figures. Star-Advertiser.

‘Standing up for our rights’: 28 of those arrested at TMT protest plead not guilty. Twenty-eight of the 38 people arrested on Mauna Kea during the first week of the Thirty Meter Telescope protest in July made their first appearances in court Friday. Hawaii News Now.


Maui Council Approves Water Pollution Settlement But Mayor May Have Final Word. The Maui County Council voted 5-4 on Friday to settle a Clean Water Act lawsuit headed to the U.S. Supreme Court. But a last-minute revelation from county attorneys has set up a showdown between councilmembers and Mayor Michael Victorino. Hawaii Public Radio.

Stranded Whales Suffered From Lung Abnormalities. All five of the pygmy killer whales that died after stranding themselves on Sugar Beach last month had abnormal lungs and lymph nodes, according to a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Maui Now.

NOAA: Whales that stranded themselves on Maui appeared to have infections. The pygmy killer whales that stranded themselves on Maui last month had some degree of lung abnormalities and enlarged lymph nodes, NOAA researchers said. Hawaii News Now.

Program improves Maui area’s security and maintenance. Like many places in Hawaii, Maui has seen a growing number of vagrants, the mentally ill, substance abusers and homeless on the streets, and nowhere is the problem more apparent than Wailuku town. Star-Advertiser.

Maui judge, lawyer among finalists for Circuit judgeship. Second Circuit Deputy Chief Judge Kelsey Kawano and Wailuku attorney Lance Collins are among four nominees for a vacancy on the 2nd Circuit Court bench. Maui News.

Kihei Beach Cleanup Clears Over Hundred Pounds of Trash. Hawaiian Paddle Sports organized the effort for International Coastal Cleanup Day, an annual world-wide effort that rallies nearly 12 million volunteers to remove over 220 million pounds of trash from waterways and beaches. Maui Now.


Thousands in federal funds set aside for Kauai’s Veterans Cemetery. Kauai’s Veterans Cemetery in Hanapepe will be getting thousands of dollars in federal funding for an expansion. Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz announced the funding Saturday. He said the cemetery will get nearly $310,000. Hawaii News Now.

Thousands in federal funds set aside for Kauai’s Veterans Cemetery. Kauai’s Veterans Cemetery in Hanapepe will be getting thousands of dollars in federal funding for an expansion. Hawaii News Now.


Larry Ellison plans 30-year, $340 million project for Lanai. The billionaire who owns nearly all of Lanai is moving forward with another piece of a broad plan to diversify the economy on the island where luxury tourism reigns. Star-Advertiser.

Friday, September 20, 2019

OHA records subpoenaed over TMT Thirty Meter Telescope, tourism expected to drop with vacation rental crackdown, new HART board chairman selected, Kealoha sentencing delayed, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Protest sign at Mauna Kea ©2019 All Hawaii News
Subpoena issued to learn how OHA is helping protesters. The state Attorney General’s Office has slapped a subpoena on the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs demanding detailed infor­mation about support that OHA has provided to the Thirty Meter Telescope opponents who are blocking Mauna Kea Access Road, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser has learned. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Kim Previews Path Forward On Mauna Kea. The Hawaii County Mayor testified before the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees during a meeting held Thursday morning. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii Mayor Kim says his plan includes building TMT, but that is a nonstarter for protesters. Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim confirmed Thursday that his long-awaited blueprint for the future of Mauna Kea will include a plan to build the Thirty Meter Telescope near the summit, but the TMT opponents said that is still unacceptable to them. Star-Advertiser.

OHA trustees meet with protesters, offer support. Three trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs met with protesters at Maunakea Access Road Thursday in support of their opposition to the Thirty Meter Telescope. Tribune-Herald.

Kaleikoa Kaʻeo, one of the leaders in the movement opposing the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea, gave passionate testimony at Thursday's Office of Hawaiian Affairs meeting. Big Island Video News.

TMT enforcement effort nets 547 citations, 11 arrests. Officers assigned to the Thirty Meter Telescope protester blockade and encampment on Maunakea Access Road issued 547 traffic citations and arrested 11 suspects in the week between Sept. 12-18, police said Thursday. Tribune-Herald.


Hawaii economy approaching standstill, report finds. Brace yourselves, Hawaii residents. The state economy is expected to slow to a near “standstill” for the next three years, according to a new University of Hawaii analysis. Star-Advertiser.

Pay Increase Approved For Hawaii School Officials. The salary adjustments impact three leadership tiers below the top-level superintendent and will help with recruitment challenges, according to the DOE. Civil Beat.

Kaiser Permanente study reveals healthy Hawaiians still at higher risk of developing diabetes. Kaiser's study found even at a normal weight, Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders have a rate of diabetes three times higher than Caucasians. KITV.

Why The Growing Demand For AC Threatens Hawaii’s Renewable Energy Goals. Far more residents now have air conditioning to deal with a warming climate.Civil Beat.


Federal Judge Postpones Sentencing Of The Kealohas For Two Weeks. The couple will now be sentenced on Oct. 31. Civil Beat.

Kealoha Conspiracy Sentencing Re-Scheduled For Halloween. Associated Press.

Sentencing for Kealohas delayed until Halloween. District Chief Judge J. Michael Seabright agreed Thursday to delay the sentencing of Katherine and Louis Kealoha for their conspiracy and obstruction convictions while settlement talks continue related to the couple’s upcoming trial on bank fraud charges and a later drug-related trial involving Katherine Kealoha and her brother. Star-Advertiser.


HPD: No one will be disciplined after emergency sirens were mistakenly set off. Honolulu’s police chief says no one will disciplined after an employee participating in a training exercise at the main station Wednesday accidentally set off emergency sirens on Oahu, sending people scrambling for information on what was going on. Hawaii News Now.

Faster corrections and training changes called for after latest false emergency scare. Figure out how to tell the public immediately that there is no danger after false alarms. That’s what the mayor and lawmakers want from anyone able to trigger emergency sirens and alerts. KHON2.

Economists: Airbnb Crackdown Will Likely Cause Big Drop In Oahu Tourism. The expected decline could cost the island more than $30 million per month in direct spending, based on state tourism data. Civil Beat.

Caldwell: Delay Of Dillingham Rail Plan Reaching ‘Crisis’ Level. Rail officials admit progress on a utility relocation plan has been too slow. Civil Beat.

Caldwell voices frustration over rail’s utility relocation. Honolulu rail officials are now wrestling with what they’ve said all along is the most difficult part of the $9.2 billion, East Kapolei-to-Ala Moana mass transit project: the relocation of a multitude of utility lines along the congested and key commuting corridor known as Dillingham before actual rail construction begins. Star-Advertiser.

HART Gets Its First New Board Chair In About Three Years. Toby Martyn joined HART as a state appointee. Now, he’s the agency’s board chairman. Civil Beat.

Manahan’s Chief Of Staff Running For City Council Seat. Radiant Cordero wants to represent the greater Kalihi area at Honolulu Hale. Civil Beat.

City Unsure of Trees Already Planted To Reach Its 100,000 Goal. Despite having an ambitious goal to plant 100,000 trees by 2025, the city has been unable to keep count of exactly how many have already been planted. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

Committee signs off on Mass Transit multi-year contract request. Finance Committee members on Tuesday gave favorable recommendation to Mass Transit Administrator Brenda Carreira’s request to fast-track approval for a multi-year contract for Hele-On bus service with no financial information attached. West Hawaii Today.

Council mulls electric buses. Members of the Hawaii County Council met with a representative of an electric bus manufacturer Tuesday to discuss the possibility of converting the county’s bus fleet to electric vehicles. Tribune-Herald.


Mayor: Injection well settlement could cost county $800 million. Supporters of ending suit call this ‘Chicken-Little’ predictions. Maui News.

An ethics complaint has been filed against Maui County Council member Tamara Paltin, alleging that she should not be voting on the Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility injection wells case – because she was once on the board of one of the plaintiff organizations which originally filed the lawsuit. Maui Now.

Maui siren was not supposed to be triggered by Honolulu Police. KHON2.

DOE seeks input on teacher compensation Wednesday. Two meetings to discuss changes to the teacher compensation system, staged by the state Department of Education, will be held on Maui from 4 to 5:30 p.m. and 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Baldwin Auditorium. Maui News.


Judge rules for Water Department. Kia‘i Wai O Wai‘ale‘ale is well on its way to losing its lawsuit against the county Department of Water, but a lawyer representing the water-rights organization said the legal battle over a proposed 18-inch water main in the Wailua watershed has broader implications, and believes the case will ultimately be settled in the Hawaii Supreme Court. Garden Island.

HTA rolls out campaign to educate visitors. Sharing the dos and don’ts with visitors for their time in the Hawaiian Islands is the goal of a campaign launched through a partnership between the Hawaii Tourism Authority and the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau. Garden Island.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Lawsuit aims to stop Ala Wai project, emergency sirens accidentally activated, lava-damaged geothermal plant to reopen this year, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News
Canoeing on the Ala Wai ©2019 All Hawaii News
Group sues to halt Ala Wai project. The city and state have signed an agreement outlining a funding plan and path forward for working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to establish flood control measures along the Ala Wai Watershed, but the $345 million project now faces a new challenge from a lawsuit filed Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu police training exercise led to false emergency warning sirens on Oahu, Maui. A Honolulu police training exercise “mistakenly activated” emergency warning sirens at 5:05 p.m. Wednesday on Oahu and Maui. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Authorities Say Emergency Sirens On Oahu, Maui Were A False Alarm. Hawaii officials say the blaring of emergency sirens in parts of Oahu and Maui Wednesday afternoon was caused by an accidental activation during a Honolulu police training exercise. Hawaii Public Radio.

Emergency sirens islandwide accidentally set off during police training exercise. Emergency sirens were accidentally set off islandwide on Wednesday, sending residents from Waikiki to Waianae scrambling to figure out what was happening. Hawaii News Now.

Emergency warning sirens accidentally activated.  Another false alarm sounded Wednesday, Sept. 18, as emergency warning sirens were mistakenly set off, this time by the Honolulu Police Department. KHON2.

Emergency Sirens Mistakenly Activated on Oahu and in Kahului. Due to an error during a Honolulu Police Department training exercise, emergency sirens were mistakenly activated on Oahu. Maui Now.

'I apologize' HPD Chief Ballard says after emergency sirens mistakenly sounded. As soon as the mistake was identified, HPD says they notified the media and the state. KITV.


Neighbor Island Schools Could Get More Money Next Year. The funds would help offset the added costs of operating a school outside the urban hub of Oahu, such as gas and mileage to cover travel for athletic events and field trips. Civil Beat.

DOE Shuts Down Its Long-Running Alternative Diploma Program. The”C-Base program,” which was a pathway to a community school diploma for non-traditional students, is being replaced by a program that focuses on work readiness. Civil Beat.

Hawaii hotels see healthy gains in August. Hawaii’s hotel industry posted healthy year-over-year gains in August, but that was due in part to weaker hotel performance in August 2018 because of Hurricane Lane. Star-Advertiser.

With Sea Level Rise, The Fate of Hawaii’s Most Vulnerable Roads Is Uncertain. Climate change is already taking a toll on coastal highways. Some of those roads may eventually be abandoned to the rising seas, a top official warns. Civil Beat.

Bottomfish Survey Underway Across Hawaii. Researchers from the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center and local cooperative research fisheries have conducted the bottomfish survey in Hawaii every year since 2016. Big Island Now.


Anti-Caldwell PAC’s Inaccurate Reporting Leads To $15,000 Fine. The Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission investigated the PAC for vast discrepancies between its campaign reports and bank records.Civil Beat.

New questions raised over dozens of costly change orders for the rail project. An audiotaped interview of a top city purchasing official is raising new questions about more than $100 million in change orders paid for by the rail project and city taxpayers. Hawaii News Now.

New ‘courtesy’ building inspections could speed up commercial projects. Frustrated building industry officials are hopeful a bill signed into law by Mayor Kirk Caldwell Wednesday will speed up home construction on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

New law is aimed at streamlining building permit process. A measure signed into law Wednesday is aimed at streamlining permitting for commercial construction projects. Hawaii News Now.

City Slaps UH With $35 Million Sewer Bill After Failing To Charge Them For 7 Years. The Department of Environmental Services never got the word UH West Oahu should be billed, and now is working with the university to come up with an accurate estimate for the retroactive sewer charges. Civil Beat.


Katherine Kealoha gets first jail visit from husband Louis. Katherine Kealoha got a visit at the Federal Detention Center Wednesday from her husband Louis Kealoha. KHON2.

Kealohas granted face-to-face meeting at federal detention center. Katherine and Louis Kealoha ― and their lawyers ― will meet at the Honolulu federal detention center for the first time since she was locked up. Hawaii News Now.


Honolulu Zoo applies for accreditation approval. Honolulu Zoo officials this month submitted an application for accreditation to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and hope to win approval by April, some four years after the facility was stripped of its association status. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Zoo reopens Malay sun bear exhibit. In a press conference this morning, Mayor Kirk Caldwell and Honolulu Zoo director Linda Santos announced the reopening of the Malay sun bear exhibit. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Big Island Prosecutor Won’t Handle TMT Arrests Because Of Son’s Job. Mitch Roth, whose son works at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, has sent the cases to the Hawaii attorney general’s office to avoid a conflict of interest. Associated Press.

Prosecutor son's job prompts turning over telescope arrests. Roth says he doesn't believe it's a conflict, but he asked for opinions from the state Office of Disciplinary Counsel and the county's ethics board. KITV.


Puna Geothermal On Track To Reopen In 2019. Hawaii’s only geothermal power plant is still on track to resume operations before the end of the year. Puna Geothermal Venture has been shuttered since the 2018 Kilauea volcanic eruption. Hawaii Public Radio.

Council OKs interim lava recovery plan. An interim strategy to guide the county’s recovery from the 2018 Kilauea eruption was formally adopted during Wednesday’s meeting of the Hawaii County Council. Tribune-Herald.

Kilauea Risk Assessment Published, As Council Adopts Recovery Strategy. The long awaited risk assessment was published on the same day the Hawaii County Council adopted the Kilauea Interim Recovery Strategy. Big Island Video News.

Broader abandoned vehicle rule drives forward. A bill that would fix county law to permit the Department of Environmental Management to remove abandoned vehicles from state and federal property is moving forward. West Hawaii Today.


Kahele: Long-term water permits on the horizon. Senator’s letter on county water agenda. For months, county water users Upcountry have been caught up in the shifting tides of the state Legislature, a lawsuit, a longtime contested case and the decision-making of private companies. Maui News.


Climate rally on Friday at KCC. A “Global Climate Strike” is set for 1 p.m. Friday at Kauai Community College.  Garden Island.

Robert Weist is one of the original investors in the Koloa Rum Company. Wednesday morning, he smiled with pride as he took part in a groundbreaking and blessing ceremony at its new site in Koloa. Garden Island.