Friday, September 25, 2020

Hawaii studies mask use, economic rebound not expected for many months, UH football to resume, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Grocery shopping in Hawaii
Grocery shopping in Hawaii during COVID-19 ©2020 All Hawaii News

Hawaii leads effort in study of mask use. Hawaii is breaking ground in trying to stop the spread of COVID-19. Officials said that it is the first state to track the percentage of residents wearing masks in public. KHON2.

Significant 2021 Hawaii economy rebound not in the forecast. Hawaii residents should not expect any meaningful broad recovery in the state economy until the middle of next year. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Businesses Are Dying. Is Government Helping Or Hurting?
Many local businesses have cut back or closed, putting tens of thousands out of work. Economists say don’t expect a turnaround until at least the middle of next year. Civil Beat.

Panel: We Need Solid Data To Predict Hawaii’s Economic Future. Economists say it’s tough to help decision-makers guide economic recovery without consistent information from government and other sources. Civil Beat.

State tourism agency crafting messages to entice visitors after Oct. 15. As Hawaii prepares to loosen travel restrictions for out-of-state travelers in October, tourism officials are trying to determine how to advertise to a travel-fearful populace. Tribune-Herald.

More hotels announce reopening plans as pre-travel testing program start nears. As the pre-travel testing start date of Oct. 15 nears, more hotels are announcing reopening plans. KHON2.

U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono wants Gov. David Ige to spend CARES Act money before it goes away. U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono wants Gov. David Ige to provide more transparency in how the state is spending federal CARES Act funding in response to the COVID-19 pandemic — along with a spending plan before the rest of the funds potentially dry up by the end of the year. Star-Advertiser.

$14 Million Allocated To Boost Hospital Staffing. The funds, provided through the federal CARES Act, will provide more than 200 additional nurses at various hospitals statewide. Big Island Video News.

Attorney argues Hawaii law is a ban on carrying guns. A challenge to Hawaii’s strict gun laws was back before a federal appeals court Thursday, where an attorney representing the state tried to defend a law that allowed officials to deny George Young a permit to carry a loaded gun in public. West Hawaii Today.

COVID-19 restrictions banning short-term vacation rentals haven’t lifted on Oahu yet, but the isle’s owners and suppliers again realized the highest, albeit still low, August occupancy statewide. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Airlines to offer drive-thru COVID-19 testing in mainland labs
exclusively for its guests. Hawaiian Airlines plans to offer drive-through COVID-19 tests in select U.S. mainland gateways that will allow travelers to bypass the state’s 14-day quarantine. Star-Advertiser.

State reverses course on accepting mail-in tests for United Airlines pre-arrivals testing pilot. State officials said they will not accept the less costly of two COVID-19 tests United Airlines wants to offer passengers to encourage travel to Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Liholiho, E.B. de Silva and Waikiki Elementary honored as National Blue Ribbon Schools. Three Hawaii elementary schools were named 2020 National Blue Ribbon Schools today and all are repeat winners — Waikiki School, Liholiho School in Kaimuki and E.B. de Silva Elementary. Star-Advertiser.

Schatz Seeks Details On Ventilation in Classrooms. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz told private and public school leaders that proper circulation and ventilation in the schools is critical to prevent COVID-19 spread. Civil Beat.

VIRUS TRACKER — Sept. 24: 90 New COVID-19 Cases And 2 Deaths In Hawaii
. Hawaii health officials reported 90 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, including 81 on Oahu, five on Hawaii island, two on Maui and two residents diagnosed out of state. Civil Beat.

State reports 90 new COVID-19 cases, 2 additional fatalities. Of the 90 new cases, 81 are on Oahu, five are on the Big Island, two are on Maui and two are out of state. The infections were out of 1,737 tests conducted, a 5.1% positivity rate. Hawaii News Now.


Robbins Keeps His Job, But Rail Faces More ‘Substantial’ Impacts To Schedule And Cost. The critical utility relocation work on Dillingham Boulevard has stalled amid an epic impasse between HART and city planners. Civil Beat.

HART board reverses course, won’t fire CEO Robbins before contract expires. In a stunning reversal, the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s board on Thursday refused to fire CEO Andy Robbins ― a week after chairman Toby Martyn claimed he actually had the votes to do so. Hawaii News Now.

Future of HART CEO uncertain after board fails to act.
Who will head the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transit next year, when the troubled rail project is scheduled to begin partial operation, remained in doubt Thursday after the HART board couldn’t decide what to do with current CEO Andrew Robbins. Star-Advertiser.


Hawaii state beaches and trails, recreational boating open to groups of 5 or less. Starting today, state officials are allowing five-person groups on state beaches and hiking trails, in alignment with Honolulu’s newest emergency order. Star-Advertiser.

City may adapt if dual metrics for Oahu reopening tiers don’t move in sync. Oahu’s reopening plan is a four-tier program that could take until the end of the year to reach the home stretch. KHON2.


UH football is returning. It appears the University of Hawaii will play football this season, after its conference, the Mountain West voted Thursday to have an eight game season starting October 24th. KITV4.

Mountain West Conference approves fall football. Forty-five days after announcing the postponement of the 2020 season, the Mountain West Conference’s Board of Directors — comprised of the presidents of the 12 football-playing schools — approved Thursday’s measure to launch a season beginning on Oct. 24. Star-Advertiser.

Mountain West votes to play shortened eight-game 2020 football season. The Rainbow Warrior football team could take the field for the 2020 football season as soon as next month under the terms of an agreement that has reportedly been reached by administrators of the Mountain West Conference. Hawaii News Now.

University of Hawaii football set for return following Mountain West announcement. A Thursday afternoon vote by the presidents of the Mountain West Conference, of which Hawaii is a football-only member, voted in favor of an eight-game conference-only season starting on Oct. 24. KHON2.

New Aloha Stadium’s 2023 opener in danger. The projected Sept. 2, 2023, opening of the New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District is in danger of being pushed back, officials suggested Thursday, a move which could add $20 million or more to the price tag. Star-Advertiser.

City’s shelter program at Keehi Lagoon Beach Park serves 500 homeless.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said Thursday a shelter program at Keehi Lagoon Beach Park intended to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 among the homeless population has served 500 people. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Federal virus relief funds to be used for 9 temporary health care providers at HMC. Spokeswoman Elena Cabatu said the hospital will welcome an intensive care unit nurse and a medical-surgical nurse on Sept. 28, and one ICU nurse, four medical-surgical nurses, one telemetry nurse and one respiratory therapist on Oct. 5. Tribune-Herald.

Feeding the need: More than 100,000 people fed via Ohana Food Drops. Vehicles lined up early, snaking around the block waiting to enter The Food Basket’s Ohana Food Drop Thursday at the Kekuaokalani Gymnasium parking lot in Kailua-Kona. West Hawaii Today.


Mayor keen on more testing for trans-Pacific visitors. Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino would “prefer” trans-Pacific visitors take a second COVID-19 test upon arrival even after testing negative for the virus prior to making the trip to Maui County. Maui News.

Two Hours of Testimony Received on Proposed Olowalu Development. Two hours of testimony was received on Wednesday relating to the fast-track Liahu Ľula housing project proposed for development in Olowalu. Maui Now.

COVID-19 takes lifeguard off Makena beach tower. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken lifeguards off the Big Beach tower in Makena and thwarted plans to set up a tower at Black Rock, among the two more dangerous beach and ocean sites on Maui, as the state marks Beach Safety Week this week. Maui News.

‘Temptation Island’ to begin filming by end of the month. Reality TV series “Temptation Island” will begin filming at the end of the month after the first round of arriving cast and crew completed quarantine and tested negative for COVID-19. Maui News.


Kaua'i reports first new COVID-19 positive case in more than one month. Kaua'i has reported its first new COVID-19 positive case in more than one month and that person is the 58th case of coronavirus on Kaua'i. KITV4.

Council candidates discuss legislation toward climate change.
What candidates for the Kaua‘i County Council would be willing to do to mitigate climate change was the focus of what may be the only forum prior to the general election. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i Office of Economic Development office shares initiatives. On Thursday, the Lihu‘e Business Association hosted a forum, virtually, with four panelists from the Kaua‘i Office of Economic Development discussing current initiatives on agriculture, business, climate and resiliency. Garden Island.

Rapid ‘ohi‘a death found in new areas.
The most recent helicopter surveys conducted by the Kaua‘i Rapid ‘Ohi‘a Death Rapid Response Team resulted in detections of the virulent fungal pathogen known as Ceratocystis lukuohia in two new areas on Kaua‘i, the upper Hanalei Valley and along the north side of Powerline Trail. Garden Island.


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