Monday, June 22, 2020

Hawaii Legislature convenes today to spend CARES money, Honolulu mayoral candidates spar over rail, COVID-19 spikes expected, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Iolani Palace is ‘hurting badly’ financially following Covid-19 closure. Iolani Palace is facing financial difficulties after being closed for three months due to the coronavirus. Pacific Business News.

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Hawaii lawmakers lay out plans to use $635M in federal aid for the unemployed and small businesses. The Hawaii state Legislature has announced plans for how it will spend $635 million from the federal aid package in response to the coronavirus to help Hawaii residents and businesses. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers detail how they'll use federal CARES Act money. $635 million will support unemployed residents, provide housing assistance and job training opportunities, and diversify Hawaii’s economy. KITV4.

Legislature Allocates $635 Million in CARES Act Funds. The Hawai‘i State Legislature’s comprehensive plan to use $635 million in federal CARES Act funds will provide ongoing, immediate relief to residents and small businesses who are suffering from the devastating economic shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Big Island Now.

Hawaii Lawmakers Get Back To Work Monday As Critical Issues Collide. Lawmakers will reconvene amid a budget crisis, pandemic and civil unrest not seen in years, all on the cusp of the primary election. Civil Beat.

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Gov. David Ige reportedly close to announcing testing protocol, loosened quarantine. Gov. David Ige’s administration is poised to adopt a COVID-19 testing protocol similar to one being used by Alaska, and is expected to announce as early as this week that at least some travelers will be allowed to bypass Hawaii’s two-week quarantine requirement this summer if they provide proof of a recent negative test for the new coronavirus. Star-Advertiser.

State: Spike in new COVID-19 cases is cause for concern but won’t slow reopening plans. The state health director said Friday that an increase of 27 new COVID-19 cases on Friday is worrisome, but are manageable and won’t slow reopening plans. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii hotels get lift from interisland travel, anxiously await broader reopening. Statewide hotel occupancy in May fell to 14.2%, an 82.1% drop from May 2019. The drop in travel demand also caused the average daily room rate to decline to $126.72, a 50.4% drop from May 2019. Star-Advertiser.

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More financial help on the way for unemployed residents. More financial help is on the way for unemployed Hawaii residents thanks to a new plan that allocates weekly and monthly stipends. KITV4.

With thousands out of work, scammers are targeting the unemployment system. With more than 143,000 Hawaii residents unemployed due to the pandemic, consumer advocates said these scammers are taking money away from the people who need it most. Hawaii News Now.

Volunteer Sleuths Track Down Hawaii's Quarantine Scofflaws. Former longtime television reporter Angela Keen knows how to track people down. During the coronavirus pandemic, she’s putting her skills to use finding tourists who defy Hawaii's mandatory two-week quarantine on arriving travelers. Associated Press.

Hawaii’s Highest Court Is Pushing Back On How Police Interrogate Suspects. The Hawaii Supreme Court on Thursday reined in what police officers can say to suspects in order to elicit confessions. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s Cesspool Problem Continues To Bubble Up As EPA Cracks Down. EPA is targeting hundreds of the largest disposal pits but Hawaii has about 88,000 cesspools still in use. Civil Beat.

Study: Marine-management areas can restore state’s depleted fisheries. A recent comprehensive study has found Hawai‘i’s nearshore waters need more effective management, and that a diverse, integrated system of marine-management areas can help restore the state’s declining coral-reef fisheries and boost the resilience of coral reefs in a changing climate. Garden Island.

State Sen. Breene Harimoto Dies At 66. The former legislator and Honolulu City Councilman represented parts of Pearl City, Waimalu, Aiea and Halawa. Civil Beat.

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11 New Cases in Hawai‘i Brings Statewide Total to 814. There are 11 new COVID-19 case reported in Hawaiʻi today–nine on Oʻahu, and two on Hawaiʻi Island–pushing the statewide count to 814 cases in Hawaiʻi over the course of the pandemic. Maui Now.

Hawaii Updates: 11 New Cases; Health Officials Say Lax Practices Led To Recent New COVID-19 Cases. The Hawaii Department of Health reported 11 new cases of COVID-19 today, 9 on Oahu and 2 on the Big Island. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii sees 11 new coronavirus cases as statewide total climbs to 814. Hawaii saw 11 new coronavirus cases today, as the statewide total of infections since the start of the outbreak climbed to 814, state Department of Health officials said in their daily midday count. Star-Advertiser.

VIRUS TRACKER — JUNE 21: 11 New COVID-19 Cases In Hawaii. Most of the new cases were reported on Oahu. Civil Beat.

11 new COVID cases reported statewide; 9 of the new cases are on Oahu. Oahu led the state Sunday in the number of new COVID-19 cases reported. Nine of the 11 total cases were that of patients on Oahu. Hawaii Island reported two additional positives. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Honolulu mayoral candidates spar over Honolulu’s rail project in forum. The tenor of this year’s Honolulu mayoral campaign turned up a notch last week when candidates at a televised forum began talking, and in some cases finger­-pointing, about the city’s troubled $9.2 billion rail project. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu City Council takes aim at new regulations against monster homes.  Even after the city passed a law regulating monster homes last year, some say the problem still persists. Hawaii News Now.

Planned bridge has Wahiawa and Whitmore Village residents divided. For 73 years, Whitmore Village, with origins as a Central Oahu pineapple plantation community, has been tied closely to Wahiawa town, also rooted in agriculture. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu bar owners come up with creative ways to keep patrons separated. After a three-month shutdown, bars are finally back open. But on Friday night, it was anything but booming. Hawaii News Now.

Fire department implements new firecracker permit application system online. The HFD is implementing its new online firecracker permit application system for consumer convenience. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

First installment: $40M in CARES funds hits county coffers. It’s in the bank. Hawaii County on Friday received half of its promised $80 million in emergency coronavirus response money, and the County Council has scheduled a special meeting July 1 to begin the work of spending it. West Hawaii Today.

Maunakea command plan again delayed. The University of Hawaii Board of Regents once again postponed action on a proposed new internal management structure for governance of Maunakea. Tribune-Herald.

Humane Society to forgo Animal Control Contract. For the first time in decades, animal control services on the Big Island will soon no longer be the responsibility of the Hawaii Island Humane Society. West Hawaii Today.

Hilo museums still largely in limbo. East Hawaii museums, some more reliant on tourist visits than others, are among those businesses working to reopen as restrictions in place to combat COVID-19 are loosened. Tribune-Herald.

Dozens turn out for missing keiki rally. Lopaka Milliora organized the event to simply bring awareness to the public that there are active cases of kids that have been kidnapped or have run away. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Mayor lets budget go into effect without his signature. Citing objections to higher trash and landfill fees and cuts to department budgets, Mayor Michael Victorino announced Friday that he would allow next year’s budget to go into effect without his signature. Maui News.

Committee to Hear Change in Zoning for Kilohana Makai Workforce Housing Project in Kīhei. The Maui Planning and Sustainable Land Use Committee will discuss the change in zoning application for the Kilohana Makai Workforce Housing Project in Kīhei, committee Chair Tamara Paltin announced today. Maui Now.

Kauai

Charter Review Commission meets today. Today, the county’s Charter Review Commission will decide which of seven proposed charter amendments will be added to November’s ballot. Garden Island.

Grove Farm Is ‘Disappointed’ In Planned Changes For Kauai Rehab Facility. In a letter to Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami, Grove Farm President and CEO Warren Haruki said he is disappointed that the original vision for the facility was not given a chance to succeed. Civil Beat.

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