Monday, July 13, 2020

Schools release pandemic reopening plans, candidates report campaign war chests, churches get millions in federal PPP grants, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

PC: Wheeler Elementary School
Social distancing at a Hawaii school PC:Wheeler Elementary School
Most Hawaii public schools will blend in-person and distance learning when classes resume. Principals selected different learning models in consultation with their staff and communities, campus by campus, for the new academic year. Star-Advertiser.

‘Learning models’ selected: Big Island schools choose plans for handling instruction when classes resume. With less than a month before students return to class, Hawaii’s public schools have made decisions about how to deliver instruction amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii COVID-19 Forecast Tool Launched. A new online tool gives a 14-day prediction about how many cases, hospitalizations and fatalities Hawaii is facing. A new forecasting tool estimates Hawaii could see between 248 and 285 new COVID-19 cases confirmed within the next two weeks. Civil Beat.

Shuttered Churches, Temples Got Millions From Feds. A federal program designed to help small businesses also helped bail out hundreds of churches and other religious organizations that were largely shut down amidst stay-at-home orders. Civil Beat.


Hawaii Lawmakers Close Legislative Session Upended By Virus. Hawaii lawmakers on Friday wrapped up a legislative session upended by the coronavirus pandemic that forced weekslong breaks in proceedings, the state Capitol building to close and some meetings to be held via teleconference. Associated Press.

Hawaii Lawmakers Salvage Bills Despite Pandemic. Some priority measures to protect the environment and expand access to preschool advanced but others to regulate Uber and Lyft and reform gun laws died at the last minute. Civil Beat.

Lawmakers Pass Bill That Phases Out Coal-Powered Energy in State. Lawmakers passed a bill that will phase out the use of coal in Hawai‘i by the end of 2022. Big Island Now.

Bill that would’ve expanded evidence against alleged domestic abusers is deferred. A measure aimed at protecting survivors of Domestic Violence was deferred at the Capitol Friday. House Bill 2610 would have allowed prosecutors to use some of the victim’s statements to first responders against alleged abusers. Hawaii News Now.

Incumbents Maintain Money Advantage In Hawaii Legislative Races. Several seats have opened up though as some lawmakers decide to seek other elected posts or leave public office. Civil Beat.


There’s good news for besieged ohia trees. Researchers for the first time have shown that ohia seedlings can survive for at least a year in forests afflicted by rapid ohia death — a glimmer of hope for a beleaguered species that has lost more than a million individuals since the disease was discovered in Hawaii a decade ago. Star-Advertiser.

Forest Restoration After Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death May Be Possible, Study Shows. Scientists have found that native ʻōhiʻa seedlings can survive for at least a year in areas that have active mortality from Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death. Big Island Video News.


Hawaii Updates: 21 New Cases After Record-Setting Day. Hawaii saw 21 new reported COVID-19 cases today after yesterday's record-setting 42 infections. Hawaii Public Radio.

VIRUS TRACKER — JULY 12: 21 New COVID-19 Cases In Hawaii. Once again, most of the new cases were on Oahu. Civil Beat.


Amemiya, Alm Lead Campaign Money Races For Mayor, Prosecutor. Primary election voting by mail starts in just over a week. Civil Beat.

Colleen Hanabusa: ‘You Don’t Need Someone Who Needs Training Wheels’. The former congresswoman has two decades of political experience and government service behind her. Now she wants to be Honolulu’s mayor. Civil Beat.

Voting machines tested for accuracy ahead of this year’s primary election.  In just over a week, the state will begin mailing out the ballots for this year’s primary election. Ahead of that, state election officials on Saturday tested the voting machines for accuracy. Hawaii News Now.


Many maskless people enjoy ‘Open Street Kalakaua’ in Waikiki while COVID-19 continues to spread. Hundreds of people — many without masks — flooded onto Waikiki’s shuttered Kalakaua Avenue on foot, bicycles, skateboards and roller skates to enjoy a traffic-free Sunday while worries of contracting COVID-19 lingered in the backdrop. Star-Advertiser.

Despite hesitance from some, city holds a ‘Dine in Chinatown’ event. An effort to boost business in Chinatown went took place this past weekend, despite criticism from some. Hawaii News Now.


6 COVID-19 cases tied to a cluster at the Pearl City Nursing Home. A total of six cases have now been reported at the Pearl City Nursing Home. Officials say the cluster began when a staff member found out they tested positive on Thursday and immediately notified the facility. Hawaii News Now.

Four residents, two workers test positive for COVID-19 at Pearl City Nursing Home. Dr. Scott Miscovich of Premier Medical Group Hawaii said his team was brought in to Pearl City Nursing Home to test about 100 residents and 200 workers on Friday and Saturday. Four residents and two staff members tested positive for COVID-19. KITV4.


Proposed Ewa Beach sea wall raises concerns. An August 2019 environmental assessment by MCBH said the proposed 10-foot-high, 1,500-foot-wide steel wall would have no significant impact on the human or natural environment. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Roth leads the pack: Mayoral candidates report campaign contributions. Mayoral candidate Mitch Roth charged ahead of the pack raising money in the race for the county’s top spot, collecting more than $148,000, primarily from big-money donors. West Hawaii Today.

Pro-business donors step up for County Council challengers: Incumbents Villegas and Kanealii-Kleinfelder outspent. Two freshman County Council members face formidable opposition in the campaign fundraising department, with pro-business challengers to both Kona Councilwoman Rebecca Villegas and Puna Councilman Matt Kanealii-Kleinfelder raising twice as much as the incumbents. West Hawaii Today.

Big Island Mayor’s Race Could Hinge On Winning The Leeward Vote. More than a dozen candidates are vying to unseat Mayor Harry Kim and lead the county through the economic crisis. Civil Beat.


Sewage Discharge Enters Kailua Bay, Closes Aliʻi Drive. 20,000 gallons of sewage entered Kailua Bay due to a broken sewer line, health officials reported on Saturday. Big Island Video News.

Sewage spill closes Kailua Bay. It was unknown how much sewage entered Kailua Bay, but swimmers were told to get out of the water and signs were immediately posted warning of contaminated water. West Hawaii Today.

County Pools Reopen Monday, With New Rules. The County of Hawaiʻi will be posting COVID-19 Modified Pool Rules at each facility, which will operate on modified schedules with interim rules in place. Big Island Video News.

Mayor: ‘We are looking at a later date’. Victorino addresses Aug. 1 easing of travel rulesDespite the state’s recent announcement that it will relax requirements to enter Hawaii come Aug. 1, Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino said Friday that the reopening may be delayed due to rising COVID-19 cases on Oahu and the U.S. Mainland. Maui News.

Maui Trans-Pacific Flights Increase to Four on Saturday. On Saturday, 2,296 people arrived in Hawaiʻi, including 600 visitors and 635 returning residents, according to new data compiled by the state Department of Transportation and released by the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority. Maui Now.

Stricter term limits, Agriculture Department pass its first test. Dividing up Department of Housing and Human Concerns fails. Maui News.

Maui County starts economic recovery task force. The Mayor's Economic Resiliency Task Force aims to provide help and hope to struggling County merchants. KITV4.

Wildberger, Couch in rematch for South Maui district seat. Incumbent state lawmaker defends seat against former council member. Maui News.


2020 Primary Election ballots to go out to Kauai voters on July 14. Ballots for the 2020 Primary Election will be mailed out on Tuesday, July 14, 2020, to Kauai voters. KHON2.

Path easement moving forward. For a portion of the Ke Ala Hele Makalae coastal pedestrian and bicycle path, the county is seeking to use eminent domain on a piece of property an owner wants to sell for over 10 times the appraised value. Garden Island.

‘Innovative’ dusk. The drive-in format marked the reopening of the Coconut Marketplace’s free family movie night program following a period of closure due to COVID-19 guidelines and rules. Garden Island.

Volunteers net tons of nets. With a depleted group of volunteers because of COVID-19, the Surfrider Foundation continues to conduct giant Net Patrols every Wednesday. Garden Island.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Hawaii rethinking reopening to tourists, Health Department to shut down noncomplying restaurants, shipper Young Brothers seeks 47% rate increase, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii dawn ©2020 All Hawaii News
County Mayors To Ige: We’re Not Ready To Welcome Back Tourists. With new surges of COVID-19 cases in key states and a sudden disruption in Hawaii’s testing capacity, Hawaii’s county mayors want the state to rethink its planned Aug. 1 tourism reopening date. Civil Beat.

As COVID-19 infections surge on mainland, mayor casts doubt on plan to reopen tourism. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell cast doubt Thursday on the feasibility of the state’s plan to reopen tourism Aug. 1, saying he no longer thinks allowing visitors to avoid quarantine starting next month if they test negative for COVID-19 is safe for everyone. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell says the decision to reopen Hawaii tourism may be pushed back. Caldwell said it’s an agonizingly painful balancing act of public health and safety and economic viability and survival, and he is unsure of the best course. Star-Advertiser.

Kim says he cannot support Ige’s plan for trans-Pacific visitors. Mayor Harry Kim said Thursday that he will not support a plan by Gov. David Ige to loosen out-of-state travel restrictions on Aug. 1 without significant improvements. Tribune-Herald.

Reservations about reopening. Gov. David Ige and Hawai‘i’s four county mayors met Thursday for the third time this week to try to address the increasingly urgent question of whether the state can safely reopen to tourists on Aug. 1. Garden Island.

State and County Leaders Evaluate Timing of Hawai‘i’s August 1 Pre-Test Program Rollout. Two weeks ago, the state announced plans to start a pre-travel COVID-19 testing program on Aug. 1, 2020.  Maui Now.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard says state should delay lifting mandatory quarantine. Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard made it clear on Thursday that she wants the state to delay lifting the 14-day quarantine for travelers. KITV4.

Shortage of COVID-19 tests nationally throws cold water on Hawaii’s tourism reopening plan. The program is still set to begin Aug. 1, and would allow incoming travelers to avoid the state’s mandatory 14-day quarantine if they test negative for coronavirus no more than 72 hours before they land. Hawaii News Now.

COVID-19 test supply could affect reopening of trans-Pacific travel. Hawaii’s influx in COVID-19 cases has state and county lawmakers reconsidering plans to move forward with a pre-travel testing program set for August. KHON2.

Mainland supplier of coronavirus testing equipment says it reduced, but not cut off, supplies to Hawaii lab. The mainland supplier of one of Hawaii’s largest COVID-19 testing laboratories said today that it has not cut off the supplies of chemicals needed to continue to run tests locally, but has temporarily reduced the volume of test kits due to a surge in coronavirus cases across the country. Star-Advertiser.

"We need more testing immediately" Hawaii doctor cautions against testing complacency. The Hawaii Department of Health reports the state's capacity is 2,400 tests per day. KITV4.

How postponing lifting travel restrictions could affect workers in the tourism industry. The governor and the mayors met for the second day to discuss plans to lift the quarantine on August 1. KHON2.

Frustrated Hawaii businesses feel a further delay could result in “economic catastrophe”. Hawaii residents and businesses are worried they won’t survive a delay in the planned reopening of tourism on Aug. 1. Star-Advertiser.


Hawaii Health Department to shut down restaurants and bars flouting coronavirus precautions. The Department of Health Food Safety Branch will issue red placards temporarily suspending the operations of restaurants, bars and other eateries that do not comply with rules that include physical distancing and the wearing of masks. Under state law, health inspectors can temporarily close food establishments that pose a danger to public health. Star-Advertiser.

Health Dept Cracks Down On COVID Safety In Restaurants. The Health Department is handing out color-coded placards to help the public identify which restaurants are in compliance with guidelines. Civil Beat.

DOH, county work to enforce virus mitigation rules. The state Department of Health will take a tougher stance against restaurants not following COVID-19 mitigation policies as the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise throughout the state. Tribune-Herald.

DOH Will Temporarily Close Restaurants, Bars Not Complying With Social Distancing. The Hawai‘i Department of Health (DOH) is taking new steps to ensure rood establishments implement appropriate social distancing guidance. Big Island Now.

DOH to issue color-coded placards. Restaurants could be shut down by the state if they don’t enforce social distancing or other pandemic guidelines, and the Hawaii Health Department issued a press release Thursday reminding food establishments of the “serious consequences” should they fail to follow the emergency rules. Garden Island.

Health Dept. to Issue Red Placards to Restaurants and Bars that Violate COVID-19 Mandates. The Hawai‘i Department of Health today announced it will begin issuing red placards to restaurants and bars that violate physical distancing and other mandates to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Maui Now.


Gun control bills hang in the balance as lawmakers wrap up the legislative session. Some key bills hang in the balance today as lawmakers try to wrap up this year’s unprecedented three-part legislative session where much of the work was done inside a locked state Capitol that was closed to the public because of the threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Senate Bills Relating to Firearm Registration and Ag Buildings Pass Final Reading. The Hawai‘i State Senate passed final reading SB3054 SD2 HD1 and SB2701 HD2 relating to firearm registration and agricultural buildings, respectively. Maui Now.


Lawmakers debate testing for nursing homes. State lawmakers held an informational briefing Thursday to discuss how COVID-19 outbreaks such as the ones that occurred at the state’s largest nursing home last month and at smaller care homes can be prevented. Star-Advertiser.

Plans For Increasing COVID-19 Testing At Care Homes On Hold. A shortage of testing supplies at private labs is forcing the state department of health to shift gears and be more strategic in its testing plan, health officials said. Civil Beat.

Legislative members, healthcare workers on preventing the spread of COVID in nursing homes. House committee members met Thursday, July 9, with health officials and health care workers to discuss how to prevent COVID-19 from spreading in nursing homes. KHON2.


Bill would make Rep. Takayama eligible to run for Sen. Harimoto’s seat. Twelve days after the death of state Sen. Breene Harimoto, the House Judiciary Committee proposed a change in state election law that would make committee member Rep. Gregg Taka­yama eligible to run to serve out the last two years of Harimoto’s term. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. Ige appoints Bennette Misalucha to the late Breene Harimoto’s Hawaii Senate seat. Gov. David Ige has appointed Bennette Misalucha to fill the late Sen. Breene Harimoto’s state Senate seat until the general election, according to a statement today from the governor’s office. Star-Advertiser.

Ige Appoints Bennette Misalucha To State Senate. The former lobbyist replaces Breene Harimoto, who died last month. Civil Beat.


Young Bros. seeks 47% emergency rate increase. Without a financial lifeline from the state, Young Brothers has requested regulators approve an emergency or temporary rate increase of nearly 47% — or $30.4 million — to sustain interisland cargo services through year’s end. West Hawaii Today.

Young Brothers seeks emergency increase in rates. Young Brothers LLC, which has been seeking a $25 million bailout from the state to avoid insolvency, has ratcheted up its plea for aid by filing a motion with the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission for an emergency rate increase that would boost the company’s revenue by about $30 million and keep its interisland cargo transport services afloat. Star-Advertiser.

Young Bros. Requests Rate Increase. Young Brothers, LLC made an emergency request of the Hawai‘i Public Utilities Commission (PUC) Tuesday asking for a temporary rate increase for the remainder of 2020. Big Island Now.

Young Brothers asks for temporary rate increase. The company made an emergency request to the Public Utilities Commission. KHON2.


Public schools identify which teaching models they’ll use come fall. The state Department of Education has released new details on what the upcoming school year will look like at individual campuses, but some concerns are being raised. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii schools select learning models, but teachers union raises concerns. The Board of Education heard from concerned teachers and parents on Thursday, July 9, about the state’s plans to reopen schools. KHON2.

Hawaii school board members hear thousands “speak with one voice”. More than 2,000 people flooded the Board of Education with written testimony Thursday, most pleading to keep students 6 feet apart and require they wear masks when they return to school next month. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii debates how close kids can get after school reopening. Hawaii public schools Superintendent Christina Kishimoto drew opposition when she said children’s desks could be as close as 3 feet (0.91 meters) if facing forward. KITV4.


Hawaii records 36 new coronavirus cases as statewide total rises to 1,130. Hawaii health officials added 36 new confirmed coronavirus cases today to the statewide total number of infections, which now stands at 1,130 since the start of the outbreak in February. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Updates: 36 New Cases; Survey: 40% Unable To Pay June Rent; Arrivals Exceed 700. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii COVID-19 Updates For Thursday, July 9th: 36 New Cases. Big Island Video News.


Senate bill paving way for new Aloha Stadium dies in Hawaii Legislature. A bill crucial to the progress of the New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District suffered an 11th-hour death at the state Legislature, which is sure to delay the project for at least a year and drive up already-escalating costs, lawmakers said today. Star-Advertiser.

‘Monumental error’ could delay Aloha Stadium redevelopment another year. After years of debate and planning, the Aloha Stadium redevelopment might be delayed another year. Hawaii News Now.


Hawaii Prison Oversight Commission: ‘Maybe We’ve Been Forgotten’. Commissioners say the state is stalling the hiring process of a director, while pushing forward to pursue a public-private partnership for a new Oahu jail complex. Civil Beat.

Multiple COVID-19 cases connected to Hawaii State Hospital temporarily halt construction at site. Health officials say there are now nine COVID-19 cases related to the Hawaii State Hospital and some of those cases temporarily halted construction at the Kaneohe campus. Hawaii News Now.

Keith Amemiya: Political Outsider Or Establishment Insider?. Despite deep political ties to numerous state and local officials, Keith Amemiya says he has the fresh perspective that Honolulu needs in the mayor’s office. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Prosecutor Candidate RJ Brown: 'Better Days Are Ahead For The Office'. Honolulu's prosecutor's office has been operating under a cloud since a federal probe targeted Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro as part of a corruption scandal that ensnared former Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha and her husband, retired Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

PUC dismisses power purchase agreement between Honua Ola, Hawaiian Electric. The state Public Utilities Commission on Thursday dismissed an amended power purchase agreement between Hawaiian Electric Co. and Honua Ola, formerly known as Hu Honua. Tribune-Herald.

Hu Honua bioenergy project fails to get PUC approval. The state Public Utilities Commission has rejected a request from Hawaii Electric Light Co., the Big Island power company, to waive competitive bidding on the long-stalled and nearly completed $350 million Hu Honua Biomass Project. Star-Advertiser.

Hu Honua Bioenergy Project Fails To Get Needed Approvals. The Hawaiʻi Public Utilities Commission has dealt another regulatory blow to the planned bioenergy project on the Hāmākua coast. Big Island Video News.

Utilities commission rejects Hu Honua’s deal to provide energy for HECO. The state Public Utilities Commission rejected a proposal by Hu Honua Bioenergy on Thursday to provide electricity to Hawaiian Electric Co. in a move the company says will lead to the loss of more than 200 jobs. Hawaii News Now.

Home, sweet home: Prosecutors move into new digs in Kona. The West Hawaii Civic Center welcomed the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney to its campus this week as the long-awaited building was finally ready for occupancy. West Hawaii Today.


Agreement reached on Pi‘ilani Promenade. LUC OKs plan that returns to original concept, nixes ‘megamall’. Maui News.

Community input is being sought for an upcoming solar project on Maui. Developers are holding a virtual open house Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. on the proposed plan in Kihei. Hawaii News Now.

Input Sought on Creating Safer Maui Roads. The public is invited to attend Vision Zero Maui’s Virtual Town Hall on Thursday, July 23, 2020 at 4 p.m. to learn about Maui roadway safety concerns and priorities in developing an action plan to eliminate traffic-related deaths and serious injuries. Maui Now.

Person treated for COVID-19 visits DMVL office. Individual not a risk but Kihei site closed for cleaning. Maui News.


Anti-Styrofoam bill amended. A bill first introduced in February that would restrict the use and sale of styrofoam foodservice containers is being amended and pushed off due to economic uncertainty sparked by the coronavirus pandemic. Garden Island.

Council debriefed on climate change. Former Mayor Bernard Carvalho had a 10-year county-wide goal of reducing emissions from county government operations by 30% by 2023. Garden Island.

Trump signs disaster declaration for Kauai storm damage. President Donald Trump today signed a disaster declaration for Kauai in connection with the heavy rain and flooding that occurred on March 27 and 28, Mayor Derek Kawakami announced. Star-Advertiser.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Hawaii short of COVID-19 testing materials as governor and mayors mull continuing quarantine past Aug. 1, Legislature kills bill giving health director power to declare emergencies, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

via Zoom
Gov. David Ige and Hawaii mayors via Zoom
Gov. David Ige and the state’s mayors will meet again to decide whether to lift the 14-day travel quarantine. After a marathon meeting Wednesday, Gov. David Ige, the county mayors and health officials will reconvene today to make a final determination on lifting the 14-day self-quarantine restriction that has largely kept tourists from visiting the islands. Star-Advertiser.

Discussion continues between mayors, governor on whether to postpone lifting Hawaii’s travel quarantine. After a five-hour meeting on Wednesday, July 8, the governor and the mayors are still trying to figure out a path forward for the state regarding travel. KHON2.


Hawaii’s coronavirus testing capability to be reduced in half after mainland company cuts off supplies. One of Hawaii’s largest COVID-19 testing laboratories has been cut off from its mainland supplier of chemicals needed to continue to run tests locally due to a surge in coronavirus cases across the country. Star-Advertiser.

COVID-19 surge on the mainland leads to shortage of testing supplies in Hawaii. A surge in new COVID-19 cases on the mainland is impacting how many coronavirus tests can be conducted in Hawaii each day. Diagnostic Laboratory Services, the largest locally-own lab in the islands, said its capacity for COVID-19 testing in Hawaii has been reduced from about 800 tests a day to 250. Hawaii News Now.

Surge in mainland cases impacting Hawaii’s testing capabilities. Dr. Scott Miscovich, who has been involved with COVID-19 testings on Oahu, says that the high demand for testing supplies in other states means our testing capabilities are going to be cut in half. KHON2.

Primary Hawaii virus testing lab loses services of supplier. Dr. Scott Miscovich, who leads broad testing efforts across the islands, said the supply loss means means the state’s testing capacity has been cut in half to about 2,500 daily. KITV4.


Hawaii Lawmakers Won’t Give Health Director Broad COVID-19 Screening Powers. A controversial bill that outlined a state health department screening response during public health emergencies has died at the state Capitol. Civil Beat.

New ICE rule won’t effect international students in Hawaii as universities plan to resume in-person classes. The University of Hawaii and Hawaii Pacific University says it plans to resume in-person classes this fall. The decision helps international students in Hawaii facing deportation under a new federal rule. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii debates how close is too close for kids in classrooms. As Hawaii’s public schools gear up to reopen next month, one question has proved to be a lightning rod of concern: How close is too close in the classroom? Star-Advertiser.

Delay in tourism reopening could spell economic disaster for Hawaii. As the state ponders pushing back the reopening of the tourism industry from August 1, Hawaii’s economic driver remains in limbo. KHON2.


United Airlines anticipates 386 Hawaii job furloughs. United Airlines expects to furlough 332 employees at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport and an additional 54 at Kahului Airport for six months or longer beginning around Oct. 1, as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to hammer the airline industry and stifle Hawaii’s tourism-based economy. Star-Advertiser.

United Airlines workers in Hawaii face layoffs as air travel industry struggles. United Airlines is preparing to make major layoffs beginning in October, and workers at two Hawaii airports appear to be in danger of losing their jobs. Hawaii News Now.


Coal-Burning Ban Among Measures On Track To Clear Hawaii Legislature. Bills to regulate Lyft and Uber, prohibit sea walls and reform gun laws also have agreement between the House and Senate ahead of a final vote Friday. Civil Beat.

The Māʻili Measure: How Hawaiʻi Determines Damages for Thousands of Native Hawaiians. Thousands of Native Hawaiians are set to receive financial compensation from the state in a historic breach-of-trust case recently decided by Hawaiʻiʻs Supreme Court. Hawaii Public Radio.

Court official to oversee damages for Hawaiian homesteads. A court-appointed special master will determine the damages distributed to each plaintiff in a 1999 class-action lawsuit. KITV4.

Coronavirus Is Disrupting Cadaver Dissection At UH. COVID-19 is prompting the University of Hawaii to reduce some of its teaching programs, including a foundational course in human dissection. Civil Beat.

General gets fourth star, takes over command of Pacific Air Forces. A command pilot with 71 combat missions and eight prior Pacific postings — including most recently as deputy commander of U.S. Forces Korea — took over as head of Pacific Air Forces Wednesday in command of approximately 46,000 airmen serving mainly in Hawaii, Japan, Korea, Alaska and Guam. Star-Advertiser.


Hawaii adds 23 new coronavirus cases as statewide total rises to 1,094. Hawaii health officials counted 23 new coronavirus cases today, bringing the statewide total number of infections to 1,094 since the start of the outbreak in February. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Updates: 23 New Cases Today; No Rollback After Sharp Spike; Kauai: TVRs Not For Quarantines. Hawaii Public Radio.

DOH Reports 23 New COVID-19 Cases Statewide. The Hawai‘i Department of Health reports 23 new COVID-19 cases statewide bringing the cumulative total to 1,094. Big Island Now.


As US cases surge, council asks state to ‘consider’ delaying changes to travel restrictions. The Honolulu City Council voted unanimously on Wednesday to pass a resolution that asks the governor to ‘consider’ pausing his plan ― which is currently scheduled to go into effect Aug. 1. Hawaii News Now.

Council holds off on $26M bond for rail. The Honolulu City Council on Wednesday voted to hold off passing a measure to approve the sale of $26 million in general revenue bonds to help finance the city’s $9.2 billion, 20-mile rail project. Star-Advertiser.

Top contenders for Honolulu mayor make their case in ‘The Job Interview'. Hawaii’s primary election is just a month away, and the five leading candidates for Honolulu mayor are scrambling to make sure their messages are heard at a time when traditional campaigning is impossible and the scale of crisis facing the city is unprecedented. Hawaii News Now.

Rick Blangiardi: This Former TV Exec Wants To Be CEO Of Honolulu. Rick Blangiardi regularly used his platform on Hawaii News Now to criticize from the sidelines. Now he admits he doesn’t have all the answers either. Civil Beat.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell reaffirms support for Doug Chin to Police Commission. Mayor Kirk Caldwell appeared before the Honolulu City Council on Wednesday to reaffirm his support for Honolulu Police Commission nominee Doug Chin, whose appointment has run into opposition headed by a group dedicated to progressive causes. Star-Advertiser.

Walk-on visits to USS Arizona Memorial to resume Friday. The National Park Service is resuming a “limited number” of USS Arizona Memorial programs on Friday with visits to the sunken battleship and grave. Star-Advertiser.

New Deal Reached To Fix Laniakea Parking, Traffic And Safety Problems. For years, the North Shore beach has been a notorious traffic choke point and an unsafe crossing for visitors. A new court agreement could change that. Civil Beat.

Bishop Museum now permanent home of 2 artifacts gifted to Captain Cook. Two cherished artifacts once gifted to Captain Cook in the 18th century can once again call Hawaii home. An ʻahu ʻula and mahiole, (feather cloak and traditional helmet) once owned by Hawaiian Chief Kalani’opu’u will be held in trust by Bishop Museum. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Yes, window AC units require building permits in Hawaii County: DPW said energy code requires it, but it may be amended. West Hawaii Today.

Council provides CARES input. Bolstered by nonbinding resolutions seeking financial bailouts for very small and women-owned businesses, the Hawaii County Council on Wednesday unanimously passed an $80 million relief package tapping into federal coronavirus funds. West Hawaii Today.

Council Votes To Help Small Businesses During Pandemic. The Hawaiʻi County Council passed a resolution urging the administration to use $5 million in CARES Act money to fund a micro-grant program for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Big Island Video News.

Resolution urges gender equality in COVID-19 recovery programs. The Hawaii County Council was very supportive Wednesday of a resolution urging the county administration to consider gender differences when crafting COVID-19 recovery programs. Tribune-Herald.

Resolution urges action to find ways for Young Brothers to resume full cargo service to the Big Island. Hawaii County Council members joined a growing list of elected officials calling for government support for Young Brothers to resume regular intra-state shipping. Tribune-Herald.

Young Brothers Shipping Solutions Sought By Council.  Councilmembers are hoping that the inter-island shipping company can take advantage of federal resources under America's Marine Highway program. Big Island Video News.


Proposals to limit terms, create new departments on tap. 6 charter changes up for first reading Friday in council. Six proposals that would limit terms for the mayor and council members, create departments for housing and agriculture and make other changes to county government will be considered by the Maui County Council on Friday. Maui News.

3000 Acres Burned in Hāli‘imaile Brush Fire: Haleakalā Hwy OPEN, Hāli‘imaile Rd CLOSED. An ongoing brush fire that started early Wednesday morning, has now burned an estimated 3,000 acres of brush. Maui Now.

Paia residents urged to remain vigilant as crews continue to battle large brush fire in Hali’imaile. Overnight, Maui fire department crews cut a large firebreak to protect residents in the area of Skill Village. KHON2.


Kaua'i Mayor expresses alarm over recent rise in COVID-19 cases. The Garden Isle's 10-week streak of being COVID-19 free ended on June 18 when a person who did not show symptoms tested positive. KITV4.

Kaua‘i residents reflect, consider reopening to transpacific travel. Since Mayor Derek Kawakami signed the first emergency proclamation relating to COVID-19 on March 4, life has been different for business owners and residents on Kaua‘i. Garden Island.

Another round of amending the Housing Policy. The county’s Housing Policy that was first enacted over a decade ago is seeing a set of revisions after it had not produced the affordable housing results the county originally intended. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i United Way secures relief funds. Noon, July 22 to the Kaua‘i United Way is the deadline for organizations wishing to be considered for funding from the federal Emergency Food &Shelter program designed to provide food, rent, utility and other assistance to people in need. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Spike in COVID-19 cases, holes in testing protocol threaten Hawaii reopening plans, doctor calls for halt to quarantine lifting, governor to meet with mayors, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii Department of Health
COVID-19 cases in Hawaii, Department of Health
Experts say Hawaii on track to see more spikes in COVID-19 cases. With COVID-19 cases spiking and mask wearing mixed, some experts are concerned that the new number of new infections will continue to swell. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s CVS trans-pacific testing partnership leaves holes for 72-hour window. To help with testing travelers, the state has partnered with CVS, but there may be some issues with the program, including a requirement that would make the partnership practically useless to Hawaii residents. KHON2.

Mayors to meet with governor on plans to lift travel quarantine amid COVID-19 spike. On Wednesday, Governor David Ige will meet with county mayors to discuss plans moving forward. KHON2.

Prominent Hawaii doctor says state should delay plan for trans-Pacific visitors. One of Hawaii’s most visible physicians on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic said Tuesday that Gov. David Ige should rethink the state’s plan to allow out-of-state visitors who arrive with a negative COVID-19 test in hand to bypass a 14-day quarantine starting Aug. 1. Tribune-Herald.

Ige says spike in new COVID-19 infections is manageable, but warns that could change. The governor sought Tuesday to reassure residents that an alarming spike in new COVID-19 infections is “manageable right now,” but warned that could change quickly and said more surges in infection might close some businesses or delay tourism’s reopening. Hawaii News Now.

Gov. David Ige says Hawaii is ‘well prepared’ to deal with coronavirus spike as the state marks its highest daily increase in new cases. Hawaii officials are urging residents to remain vigilant as the state marked its highest daily surge in new coronavirus cases since the start of the outbreak in the islands. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii officials react to highest case count in a single day since COVID-19 pandemic began. Governor David Ige claims the numbers are expected and manageable and that the state is prepared, while Department of Health Director Bruce Anderson calls the trends disturbing. KITV4.

State reports highest daily number of new COVID cases since March. Tuesday’s total was the largest reported daily number of cases since the state’s pandemic emergency was declared March 4, eclipsing the previous high of 34 cases on April 3. Tribune-Herald.

41 New COVID-19 Cases in Hawai‘i Marks Largest Single Day Increase. There are 41 new COVID-19 cases reported for Hawaiʻi today, marking the largest single day increase in cases since the pandemic began. Maui Now.

VIRUS TRACKER — JULY 7: 41 New COVID-19 Cases In Hawaii. A record number of COVID-19 cases were confirmed Tuesday. Civil Beat.

Hawaiʻi COVID-19 Updates For Tuesday, July 7th: 41 New Cases Reported. The majority of the newly reported COVID-19 cases are on Oʻahu, state health officials announced today at noon. Big Island Video News.

Hawaii Updates: 41 New COVID Cases Set Record; Bar, Gym Clusters May Prompt Reopening Rollback. The Hawaii Department of Health today reported 41 new cases of COVID-19, a state record for daily cases since the pandemic began. Thirty-eight cases are on Oahu, 2 on Kauai and 1 on Hawaii Island. Hawaii Public Radio.

A colored placard system could soon identify businesses abiding by COVID precautions. The Health Department's Food Safety Branch said once the plan is approved by the Attorney General’s office, details will be released. But it could very well be similar to the health inspection placard system for restaurants and food safety. Hawaii News Now.


Kouchi business gets PPP funds. A company that Hawaii Senate President Ronald Kouchi owns shares in and is employed by received a small business coronavirus relief loan from the U.S. government, according to data released by the Small Business Administration. Associated Press.

Lawmaker honored at memorial service held at state Capitol. Precautions to curb the spread of COVID-19 might have kept crowds of mourners away from Tuesday’s memorial service for state Sen. Breene Harimoto at the state Capitol, but legislative colleagues and other officials were there to offer ample praise for a man they described as humble and courageous. Star-Advertiser.


U.S. steps up firepower as China consolidates gains in South China Sea. The USS Nimitz and USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier strike groups recently demonstrated what the Navy called “unmatched sea power” while conducting rare dual-carrier operations in the South China Sea, as military muscle flexing continues on both sides of growing discord in the region. Star-Advertiser.

Aggressive seaweed smothers one of world’s most remote reefs. Researchers say a recently discovered species of seaweed is killing large patches of coral on once-pristine reefs and is rapidly spreading across one of the most remote and protected ocean environments on earth. Associated Press.


Mayoral candidates offer ideas for tackling homelessness. A dozen candidates for Honolulu mayor presented a wide variety of approaches to the vexing issue of homelessness on the island during an early morning forum Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Mufi Hannemann: He Was Mayor Once Before. Will That Help Or Hurt With Voters? In the Honolulu mayor’s race, a seasoned politician like Hannemann can tout his successes but also has a long record ripe for scrutiny.  Civil Beat.


Mother and son among 4 city employees with positive coronavirus tests. Four city employees have now tested positive for COVID-19, including the latest: an employee who works out of a Halawa base yard clearing sewage wastewater drains and his mother, who works for the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation, city officials said today. Star-Advertiser.

4th Honolulu Employee Tests Positive For COVID-19. A mother and son tested positive as Hawaii hit its highest number of daily cases yet. Civil Beat.


New program hopes to keep fishing afloat. Mayor Kirk Caldwell on Tuesday announced a new “fish to dish” program to help Hawaii’s ailing fishing industry. Star-Advertiser.

City throws a line to the longline fishing industry with a new program. Nearly 350,000 fish portions will be distributed to Oahu families over the next five months. Hawaii News Now.


Voters who miss registering online still have options. With the state this year switching to a “vote by mail” format, Oahu residents who don’t register online may register at voter service centers at Honolulu Hale and Kapolei Hale from July 27 through Aug. 8, primary election day. Star-Advertiser.

New stadium plan expected to pass Senate. State lawmakers are poised this week to pass the last major piece of stadium legislation before the state begins soliciting bids for a public-private partnership in the development of the New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District. Star-Advertiser.

Iwilei ballrooms fall victim to pandemic. The Pomaikai Ballrooms at Dole Cannery — dependent on large gatherings that are no longer allowed due to the COVID-19 pandemic — closed for good Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

COVID-19 Positive Individuals Visited Big Island on Business Trip, State Says. Details on the cluster were sparse and did not include the name of the business that planned the trip, the location from which the group traveled to the Big Island, or how many people were part of the group. Park did say that the interisland travelers in question visited both sides of Hawai‘i Island and that a few have already tested positive for COVID-19. The rest are currently under self-quarantine. Big Island Now.

Factory-built housing raises concerns: Council committee advances 197-page construction code revamp. A County Council panel tried to balance affordable housing and jobs Tuesday before advancing the framework for a revamped construction code folding in building, plumbing, electrical and energy components. West Hawaii Today.

Resolution calls for halt to controversial 5G development. The Hawaii County Council will consider pursuing action to bar 5G cellular network development on the Big Island until the controversial technology is proven to be safe. Tribune-Herald.

Bill would incentivize conservation, reforestation of native trees. As part of an effort to stimulate reforestation efforts on the Big Island, the County Council will consider a bill that would lower property taxes for owners of certain forest lands. Tribune-Herald.


County not looking at furloughs, pay cuts. Governor said cuts may be inevitable as federal funds run out. Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino said Monday that pay cuts and furloughs for county workers are not being considered at this time, but added that “nothing’s off the table” as Hawaii continues to feel the economic effects of COVID-19. Maui News.

Proposed Charter Amendments on Friday’s Council Agenda. Six proposals to reform the structure of Maui County’s government will be considered for passage on first reading on Friday at 9 a.m., Councilmember Michael J. Molina announced today. Maui Now.

Maui restaurants plead for rule changes to stay in business. The Maui Restaurant Hui estimates that there are 10,000 unemployed chefs, cooks, and staff members from the more than 150 eateries in the group. Hawaii News Now.

Maui home sales down 20% in June, but new listings increase. Home sales on Maui declined by more than 20% in June, compared to the same month last year, but new listings for both single-family homes and condominiums increased, and pending sales for single-family homes rose by 22%, according to statistics from the Realtors Association of Maui. Pacific Business News.


KVB offers insights to reopening efforts. Part of Gov. David Ige’s announcement to reopen August 1 included a point that travelers may bypass the state-mandated 14-day quarantine by showing proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of landing. Garden Island.

Texas man, 36, arrested at Kauai hotel for violating quarantine rules after insisting on a taxi. Kauai police have arrested a Texas man for violating Hawaii’s mandatory, 14-day quarantine rule for out-of-state visitors after he insisted hotel staff call a taxi for him. Star-Advertiser.

Kauai Food Businesses Persist During Pandemic Thanks To Grant. With money from Common Ground, two companies are finding ways to scale up and pivot away from tourism despite COVID-19. Civil Beat.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Hawaii PPP recipients include Trump hotel, hospitals, newspapers; police reform bill passes Legislature; Ige warns of financial crisis, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Trump hotel in Waikiki ©2020 All Hawaii News
Trump Hotel In Waikiki Received Millions From Small Business Bailout. While President Donald Trump doesn’t own the property, he does license his name to the California company that does. Civil Beat.

Over 3,000 Hawaii PPP loan recipients named in transparency effort. A jewelry store chain, two hospitals and a private school are among the biggest Paycheck Protection Program loan recipients in Hawaii, according to data released Monday. A condominium-hotel tower in Waikiki affiliated with President Donald Trump also has benefited from the program, the data shows. Star-Advertiser.

These Hawaii Businesses Got Federal Loans During The Pandemic. The U.S. government finally released the names of companies participating in federal coronavirus relief programs after months of obfuscation. Civil Beat.

Federal loans helped keep thousands of Hawaii businesses afloat during pandemic. More than 24,000 Hawaii-based businesses and non-profit organizations applied for federal loans to help keep employees paid during the coronavirus pandemic, according to data released by the U.S. Department of the Treasury on Monday. Hawaii News Now.

Explore the SBA data on businesses that received PPP loans. Washington Post.


Does Hawaii Have A Grip On COVID-19? Health officials are expressing concern over a recent spike in cases, but say Hawaii has the capacity it needs to scale back the travel quarantine. Civil Beat.

Surge in cases elsewhere forcing state leaders to reassess reopening plan set for Aug. 1. Hawaii is still planning on allowing tourists without a mandatory quarantine on August 1, provided they get a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of landing and that test is negative. But Governor David Ige admitted in a press conference Monday afternoon that the surge in cases from other states is concerning. Hawaii News Now.

Ige outlines features of new financial plan to cope with COVID-19 pandemic. In light of the looming financial challenges, Ige said the state is seeking a loan from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, implemented a hiring freeze, is working with state agencies on possible reductions and wants to stop non-personnel expenditures. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii’s state government is facing a ‘financial crisis’. Hawaii’s state government is facing a $2.3 billion loss in revenue over the next two fiscal years as it prepares to invite trans-Pacific travelers back to the islands Aug. 1. Star-Advertiser.

State facing $2.3B in lost tax revenue due to coronavirus pandemic. The financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Hawaii is beginning to come into focus, Gov. David Ige said Monday ― and the picture isn’t pretty. Hawaii News Now.

State facing massive projected budget shortfalls, increasing to $6.4 billion in 2026.  Governor David Ige warned the state of Hawaii Monday that there is a budget shortfall of $2.3 billion looming in the fiscal year 2021, but projections forward are more daunting. KHON2.

Governor Warns Of Future Financial Challenges. Hawaiʻi revenues are expected to drop by $2.3 billion in fiscal years 2020-21, says the Council of Revenues, forcing the State to consider potential cuts. Big Island Video News.

‘Looming Financial Crisis’ Ahead for Hawai‘i as Tax Revenues Plummet. The Council on Revenues predicts Hawai‘i will lose out on $2.3 billion in tax revenues over the next 12 to 15 months. Big Island Now.

Gov. Ige Outlines How COVID-19 Has Impacted the State’s Finances. During the pandemic more than 200,000 residents lost their jobs and filed for unemployment. Maui Now.


Police reform bill passes; law would require county departments to disclose identity of an officer upon suspension. The Legislature passed a police reform bill Monday that would make public the identities of police officers who have been suspended or discharged, putting them on equal footing with other public agency employees. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Legislature Removes Police Exemption For Misconduct Cases. The bill now goes to Gov. David Ige who can approve it, veto it or let it become law without his signature. Civil Beat.

Police accountability bill headed to Ige’s desk. A bill that would identify fired or suspended county police officers is headed to Gov. David Ige’s desk. West Hawaii Today.


Hawaii Senate committee rejects Gov. Ige’s pick for state director of finance. The Senate Ways and Means Committee this morning voted to reject the appointment of state Director of Finance Craig Hirai, the second time in a week that one of Gov. David Ige’s cabinet appointments has been jeopardized by Senate push-back. Star-Advertiser.

Senate committee recommends rejection of Ige’s BLNR nominee. A state Senate committee voted Monday to recommend against confirming Gov. David Ige’s nominee to represent Hawaii Island on the state Board of Land and Natural Resources. Tribune-Herald.


Substitute teachers’ unemployment benefits in limbo in Hawaii. When public schools shut down in Hawaii in March, substitute teachers were able to file for unemployment insurance, but that money stopped flowing in June. Star-Advertiser.

Advocates: Lack Of Interpreter Services At Unemployment Office Is Illegal. Immigrants and people who don’t speak English have had a hard time accessing unemployment benefits. Civil Beat.

COVID-19 clusters form after people skip masks, distance. State health officials said Monday that recent clusters of the coronavirus detected in Hawaii have been associated with people not wearing masks and not social distancing. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii Updates: 7 New COVID-19 Cases; Mayor Says Spike In Oahu Cases 'Concerning'. The state's total case count now stands at 1,030 with 19 deaths. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaiʻi COVID-19 Updates For Monday, July 6. One new case of COVID-19 was reported on Hawaiʻi Island at noon on Monday, part of the 7 new cases reported statewide. Big Island Video News.


Warnings, citations given on Oahu for face mask violations.  On Oahu, Honolulu Police tells us from July 3-5 it has issued 108 warnings and 2 citations for face mask violations. KHON2.

Local security companies say they're being asked to help enforce COVID-19 guidelines. Star Protection Agency and Securitas tell KITV4 that they're being asked to help make sure customers wear face masks and follow other guidelines issued by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell. KITV4.

Gyms battle germs as officials consider rollbacks of high-risk businesses. There’s a cluster of 9 coronavirus cases that has been linked to an unnamed but temporarily closed Oahu gym, and Governor Ige said Monday that gyms may be the type of business that could shut down down again if positive tests continue to rise. Hawaii News Now.

Judge blocks auction of Abigail Kawananakoa’s belongings. An auction of 94-year-old Campbell Estate heiress Abigail Kawananakoa’s belongings can’t go forward until a conservator is named to handle her finances, a judge ruled Monday. Associated Press.

Punahou School prepares to welcome back students on-campus in August. Due to COVID-19, instruction went online back in March and it has remained that way during the summer. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Plea deal still on table in alleged child starvation. A plea deal is still in the works for a 52-year-old Hilo man accused of starving his 9-year-old daughter to death more than four years ago. Tribune-Herald.


Dairy milks any business it can get. As sales decline during pandemic, Surfing Goat Dairy fights to stay afloat. Maui News.

Kanaha Hotel opening pushed back a year. Public meeting to be held on formerly named Windward Hotel. Maui News.


Newest cases travel related. Two new positive cases of COVID-19 were announced by the Kaua‘i District Health Office on Monday, bringing the cumulative total to 42 cases, with the number. Garden Island.

New life for Alekoko Fishpond. For the first time in over half a century, The Alekoko Fishpond is clear of adult mangrove. Garden Island.

Monday, July 6, 2020

Hawaii COVID-19 cases top 1,000, Senate staffer, Summer Fun worker test positive, Kauai man arrested for refusing to wear mask, voter registration deadline nears, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Yellow tang on Hawaii reef, story below  ©2020 All Hawaii News
Hawaii Senate worker tests positive for coronavirus but legislative session to resume Monday. The Hawaii State Senate will reconvene on Monday, despite learning Saturday that a Senate staff member had tested positive for COVID-19. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s COVID-19 cases top 1,000 as lifting of some lockdowns leads to more spread. Coronavirus infections in Hawaii topped 1,000 on Sunday, the fourth day in a row with more than 20 new cases. Star-Advertiser.

Green urges caution, mask-wearing as COVID-19 case count hits 1,023. As Hawaii surpassed 1,000 COVID-19 cases Sunday, Lt. Gov. Josh Green said he is concerned about a potential surge in cases following this weekend’s holiday festivities. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii continues to see double-digit spikes in COVID-19 cases amid growing concern about community spread. Hawaii saw another double-digit spike in new COVID-19 cases Sunday, with 25 new infections — all on Oahu. The cases put the statewide total at 1,023. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige warns that without more federal aid, public worker pay cuts or furloughs are inevitable. Gov. David Ige is planning to borrow money from the federal government to raise cash to navigate the budget crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, but said layoffs, pay cuts or furloughs of Hawaii public employees are inevitable if Congress and President Donald Trump don’t come through with more help. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Among Airlines To Reach Loan Agreements with US. American Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines and three smaller carriers have reached agreement with the government for billions more in federal loans, a sign of the industry’s desperate fight to survive a downturn in air travel caused by the virus pandemic. Associated Press.


Public will have a chance to weigh in on the major overhaul of election rules. A big overhaul of election rules is on the table, and the public has a chance to weigh in on Monday, July 6. KHON2.

Voter registration deadline approaching. New Hawaii voters have until Thursday, July 9, to register to vote in the 2020 Primary Election. West Hawaii Today.

State elections office to hold drive-thru voter registration events. Voter registration can be done online at the state Elections website, through a Voter Registration Applications at the county election office, or through one of several drive-thru registration events this week. Hawaii News Now.


Kahele Can’t Campaign For Congress Right Now. Does It Matter? The Democrat has to sit it out while on active National Guard duty, but he doesn’t face much of a threat anyway — something that has dumbfounded political observers. Civil Beat.

State seeks to give health director power to declare public health emergencies. The state wants to give the state Health director the authority, with the governor’s blessing, to declare public health emergencies to battle the coronavirus and future pandemics. Hawaii News Now.


Federal judge rules Hawaii’s quarantine is reasonable during coronavirus pandemic. A U.S. judge will not stop Hawaii from enforcing a quarantine on arriving travelers, saying in a ruling that the emergency mandate is reasonable during the public health crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. A group of Hawaii, California and Nevada residents tried to stop the quarantine by filing a lawsuit alleging it is unfair and unnecessary. It violates the fundamental right to travel freely, they argued. Associated Press.

Full order from federal court upholding Hawaii's quarantine policy found here.


Hemp production bill advances, but fate uncertain. A bill that would fully legalize hemp production throughout Hawaii is only a few steps away from becoming law, although many are unhappy with its final form. Tribune-Herald.

Ways and Means passes measure banning flavored tobacco products. The state Senate Ways and Means Committee on Thursday unanimously advanced a bill banning flavored tobacco products. West Hawaii Today.

Proposed solar farms could power 200,000 Hawaii homes. About a dozen solar farm developers are preparing to soon hold community meetings about plans that could power around 200,000 Hawaii homes with photovoltaic panels covering more than 3,000 acres on three islands. Star-Advertiser.


Breakthrough could boost yellow tang. Scientists in Hawai‘i have made breakthroughs in studies of the popular yellow tang aquarium fish that could lead to a shift to aquaculture for procurement instead of wild catching. Garden Island.

Roi, the misunderstood fish. Research reveals more about disliked, introduced species. Over the years, roi have been labeled as a culprit for the declining fish populations and reef health, but marine specialists say these fish may not be as bad as they seem. Maui News.

18 endangered monk seals born in main Hawaiian islands so far in 2020. A total of 18 monk seal pups have been born in the main Hawaiian islands so far this year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Star-Advertiser.

Beach Cleanups Prove Popular And Purposeful During Pandemic. People want to help or just stretch their legs, and groups are organizing events with safety guidelines in mind. Civil Beat.


Hawaii Updates: State Exceeds 1,000 COVID-19 Cases; Summer Fun Worker Tests Positive. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaiʻi COVID-19 Updates For Sunday, July 5: 25 New Cases. All of those new cases were reported on Oʻahu, bringing the cumulative total on that island to 744. Big Island Video News.

Number of COVID-19 cases in Hawaii is now over 1,000. Twenty-five new cases reported on Sunday, July 5, by the state Department of Health brings the statewide total to 1,023. KHON2.


Waipahu Summer Fun employee tests positive for COVID-19. A city park employee who works at a Summer Fun site in Waipahu and had “minimal” contact with participants has tested positive for COVID-19, authorities said. Hawaii News Now.

City park staff member tests positive for COVID-19. The city has confirmed a staffer in the Department of Parks and Recreation has tested positive for COVID-19. KHON2.

Summer Fun employee tests positive for COVID-19. KITV4.


‘Open Street Sundays’ in Waikiki extended through July. Kalakaua Avenue will continue to be closed to vehicle traffic on Sunday mornings, as the city has announced an extension of the ‘Open Street Sundays’ program. Hawaii News Now.

Envisioned vertical public school in Kakaako faces new delays. Three years after unveiling images of what Hawaii’s first vertical public school could look like, the pioneering project envisioned for Kakaako is in limbo. Star-Advertiser.

Kakaako condo tower construction upended by COVID-19. Production of a mainly midpriced Kakaako condominium tower has run into trouble because of COVID-19, but the developer believes several planned changes that include pricing more units for less will overcome setbacks. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Ola Brew expands to mainland: Company’s hard seltzers now available across Southern California. At a time when many businesses are seeing markets shrink, Kailua-Kona’s Ola Brew Co. has managed to extend its reach to the mainland. West Hawaii Today.

Puna retreat’s grant request delayed as pandemic stifles state funding. A battle between a group of Puna residents and a Puna retreat is delayed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tribune-Herald.


Half of jobless filers had not received checks. More than half of Maui County residents who applied for unemployment benefits as of mid-May had not received payments and nearly half of Maui County households reported a decline in income since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, a Bank of Hawaii Foundation survey released Thursday showed. Maui News.

Kahului Airport’s Runway 2-20 to Temporarily Close for Taxiway Construction. The Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation advises Maui residents of the closure of Runway 2-20 for a taxiway reconstruction project scheduled to take place at the Kahului Airport on weekends from July 4 to Aug. 1. Maui Now.

More park space and fewer gentleman’s estates. Draft community plan covering next 20 years finished. Designating 500 more acres in West Maui for parks and open space and restricting gentleman’s estates and fast-track affordable housing projects in certain West Maui areas, are some of the highlights of the updated draft of the West Maui Community Plan. Maui News.


Man arrested after refusing to wear face mask. Kaua‘i police arrested Ryan Buley, 34, of Kapa‘a, Saturday afternoon, for terroristic threatening and harassment following his refusal to wear a mask in a North Shore store. Garden Island.

Kauai man arrested for harassment after refusing to wear a mask. Kaua‘i police arrested Ryan Buley, 34, of Kapa‘a, Saturday afternoon for terroristic threatening and harassment following his refusal to wear a mask in a North Shore store. KITV4.

Kauai County, Airbnb Inc. agree to limit rentals. Kauai County has partnered with Airbnb Inc., the online travel platform, to help weed out illegal vacation rental properties on the Garden Isle. Star-Advertiser.