Friday, April 16, 2021

Hawaii vaccine passport delayed, University of Hawaii mulls requiring vaccinations, coral reef threatened by climate change, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Global Warming's Extreme Rains Threaten Hawaii's Coral Reefs. Extreme rain events predicted to become more common with human-caused global warming not only wreak havoc on land — the runoff from these increasingly severe storms also threatens Hawaii's coral reefs. Associated Press.

Hawaii Safe Travels coronavirus vaccine passport timeline pushed back. Lt. Gov. Josh Green said it is now looking like mid-May could be the date vaccinated travelers can bypass a quarantine and pre-test to fly inter-island, and mid- to late-June for mainland travel. KHON2.

UH considers COVID vaccination mandate for students and employees.
The University of Hawaii is weighing the possibility of requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for its community -- except for those who cannot receive the vaccine due to health reasons. UH President David Lassner told the Board of Regents Thursday morning that at least 50 American colleges and universities plan to require coronavirus vaccines by the Fall semester. Hawaii News Now.

Suspension of pay raises now moves to conference committee. All Democratic and Republican members of the state House voted Thursday to defer pay raises of 10% for themselves that would go into effect on July 1, moving the issue to conference committee with their Senate counterparts. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Board of Education Approves Pay Boosts For Complex Area Leaders.
The issue drew heated discussion from some board members over the “optics” of leadership pay raises in the current economic climate. Civil Beat.

After pause, UH willed body program is once again accepting donations. After being forced to shut down because of the pandemic, the University of Hawaii’s medical school is once again accepting donations to its willed body program. Hawaii News Now.

Matson projects big profit on heels of China growth. Matson Inc. is heralding what it expects to be a giant first-quarter profit. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii hits million-mark milestone in administration of COVID-19 vaccines. Four months to the day since Hawaii’s first COVID-19 vaccinations were given to health care workers at The Queen’s Medical Center, the state hit 1 million doses administered across the islands, according to the Department of Health. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

38 fully vaccinated in Hawaii still got coronavirus, slightly above national rate. A total of 38 people in Hawaii have come down with COVID-19 after being fully vaccinated. That number of “breakthrough” cases slightly outpaces national numbers. KHON2.

April 15, 2021 COVID-19 Update: The state Department of Health reports that there were 98 additional COVID-19 cases reported in Hawai‘i on Thursday, including 59 on O‘ahu, 24 on Maui, 14 on Hawai‘i Island, and one on Moloka‘i. Maui Now.


Office of Hawaiian Affairs plows ahead with waterfront development plans despite opposition. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is forging ahead with its pledge to develop 30 acres of underutilized and largely waterfront land in Kakaako despite head winds in the community, the state Legislature and a law that prevents residential development. Star-Advertiser.

City expands free COVID-19 testing to hotel industry workers
. In an agreement with the National Kidney Foundation of Hawaii Consortium, the city will provide COVID testing kits at the Honolulu airport and at the Hawaiian Monarch Hotel in Waikiki. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Polynesian Cultural Center launches new packages, prepares for full reopening. The Polynesian Cultural Center announced the introduction of new guest packages as it prepares to fully reopen its island villages on Monday, April 26. KHON2.

Free summer fun program returns to Honolulu parks. Honolulu's popular Summer Fun program is returning to city parks and for the second year in a row, it's free. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Airport COVID-19 testers ousted. Hawaii County ousted Premier Medical Group from its COVID-19 testing program at the island’s three major airports, uprooting more than 100 workers with less than a week’s notice, and brought in another vendor on an emergency two-week, $508,200 contract. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii Island allowing vaccinated travelers to skip post-arrivals COVID test, plans to stop second tests May 1. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Now. KITV4.

New Fire Chief Kazuo Todd Sworn In. Kazuo Todd, Hawaiʻi County’s newest Fire Chief, was sworn in by Mayor Mitch Roth on Thursday morning. Big Island Video News.

Nonprofits working together to offer rent, utility assistance to those affected by COVID. Seven local nonprofits are partnering to allocate $21 million in rent and utility assistance to individuals affected by COVID-19, and a series of upcoming meetings will detail how those funds will be deployed by the end of the year. Tribune-Herald.


Moratorium on hotel building permits proposed. A Maui County Council bill is proposing to halt building permits for West and South Maui hotel development until community plans for both areas are updated. Maui News.

Department of Health vaccine appointments going unfilled on Maui. For about a week now, appointments have gone unfilled at state Department of Health vaccine clinics in Kahului, mere months after people once waited hours in line to get a shot and were sometimes turned away as demand overwhelmed the clinic. Maui News.

21 COVID-19 Clusters Identified in Maui County
. There are 21 COVID-19 clusters identified in Maui County, according to an updated report issued today by the state Department of Health. This includes: seven in the travel/lodging/tourism sector, six at educational settings, two at a food suppliers, two at restaurants, two in occupational settings, one cluster at a correctional facility, and one at a place of worship. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now.

Apartments on Maui will welcome homeless families
. The first tenants of Maui County’s Huliau Apartments, designed for families who have fallen into homelessness, are expected to move in later this month once renovations at the former University of Hawaii Maui College dormitory complex are complete. Star-Advertiser.

How Scientists Are Pivoting In Their Quest To Save Hawaii’s Crows. Conservationists are looking to Maui as a possible short-term solution for reestablishing alala in the wild. Civil Beat.


St. Catherine School principal out. Mary Ann Bode has stepped down from her role as interim principal at St. Catherine School in Kapa‘a following allegations of abuse and unethical behavior targeted toward teachers. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i Police Department honors dispatchers. The Kaua‘i Police Department honored dispatchers during a ceremony Tuesday, in recognition of National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week. Garden Island.

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