Friday, May 14, 2021

Ige maintains mask mandate despite CDC guidance, Musk plans rocket reentry off Kauai, workers hard to find despite high unemployment, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. David Ige

Gov. David Ige keeps Hawaii mask rules unchanged despite change by CDC. As President Joe Biden and federal health officials gave the OK for Americans who have been vaccinated to go maskless in most situations and discard social distancing, Gov. David Ige signaled that the time to loosen such restrictions wasn’t right for Hawaii. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii Public Radio. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now. Garden Island. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Lt. Governor Wants to Give Vaccinated Hawaii Residents More Travel Options. The state rolled out its vaccine passport system this week, making inter-island travel easier for people who were vaccinated in Hawaii. Lieutenant Governor Josh Green says he'd soon like to use the system for vaccinated residents returning to the islands from the mainland. Hawaii Public Radio.

HiEMA announces change in requirement for intercounty travelers to bypass quarantine. Interisland travelers now need to show proof of just one vaccine dose in Hawaii, as opposed to two, to qualify for the state's vaccination exception program. That's for anyone who received Pfizer or Moderna's two-dose COVID vaccine. KITV4.

State epidemiologist says Hawaii is ‘close’ to reaching herd immunity. The state’s epidemiologist says Hawaii is getting close to herd immunity, but stressed that vaccinations must continue to actually achieve it. Hawaii News Now.

“Follow the Science:" Restaurant Owners Want Governor to Relax Mask, Distance Restrictions. Greg Maples, Chairman of the Hawaii Restaurant Association, wants Governor David Ige to relax mask and distancing restrictions as consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. KITV4.

Schatz Urges Ige to Lift Restrictions on Youth Sports, Permitting Surf and Regatta Competitions. US Sen. Brian Schatz has called on Gov. David Ige to lift restrictions on youth sporting events, including allowing parents and guardians to cheer on their athletes in person and permitting surf competitions and regattas to resume while adhering to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. Big Island Now. KHON2.

Hawaii Has A Lot Of Unemployed People. But Companies Still Can’t Find Help. The labor force has been reduced by workers leaving the state and staying home to supervise children and avoid potential exposure to the virus. Civil Beat.

Bypassing the Bitcoin Blockade. How one state worker helped open the door to Cryptocurrency in Hawai‘i. Hawaii Business magazine.

Taxpayers On The Hook For $2.3M To Settle Legal Claims Against The State. A state settlement over a deadly motorcycle crash on the Likelike Highway accounted for nearly half of taxpayers’ legal bills — totaling about $2.3 million — approved by lawmakers this year. Civil Beat.

May 13, 2021 COVID-19 Update
: 76 Cases (49 O‘ahu, 17 Maui, 1 Moloka‘i, 7 Hawai‘i Island, 2 Out-of-State). Maui Now.


Officials embark on a study to lower costs of $651 million Ala Wai project. Another study is in store for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ over-budget Ala Wai Flood Risk Management Project. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Coral damage near Honolulu Harbor entrance prompts state probe. State officials Thursday said they are investigating the circumstances that led to significant coral damage near the entrance channel to Honolulu Harbor after dredging work done by a contractor. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

City requests gag order in Lindani Myeni case. The city's Deputy Corporation Counsel Thursday filed a motion for a protective order against the disclosure of details surrounding the death of 29-year-old Lindani Myeni. KITV4.

Honolulu opens short-term homeless shelter in Wahiawa. The project, HONU (Homeless Outreach and Navigation for Unsheltered Persons), uses inflatable tents to offer services to unsheltered individuals and families 24 hours a day. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Public comment sought on county budget. Tuesday is your chance to speak out, as the County Council holds its annual public hearing on the county budget. West Hawaii Today.

Spreading the word: Vaccination outreach effort hits Kona neighborhoods. A dedicated group of individuals led by the Department of Health has been spreading the word about an upcoming vaccination clinic in Kona by pounding the pavement and knocking on doors. West Hawaii Today.


Maui COVID-19 Clusters are Down in Latest Weekly Report. While construction was not identified in this week’s report, Maui Mayor Michael Victorino on Wednesday confirmed that there is a a cluster at a construction company that contributed to today’s double-digit count of new cases in Maui County. Maui Now.

DOH confirms 12 COVID-19 cases linked to contractor who worked at Molokai General Hospital. The Queen’s Health Systems on Thursday reported that a Maui-based contractor working at Molokai General Hospital tested positive for COVID-19. KHON2. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Southern Airways to Bring Larger Turboprop Aircraft to Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi. Southern Airways, the parent company of Mokulele Airlines, announced today that it is bringing a larger cabin-class aircraft to Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi with weekday service to begin in the fall.  Maui Now.


For upcoming space mission, Elon Musk eyes waters off Hawaii to land rocket. A spacecraft may be splashing down off the coast of Hawaii as SpaceX CEO Elon Musk plans to launch an orbital flight test for his newest rocket. In filings to the Federal Communications Commission, Musk said he plans to make a soft ocean landing about 62 miles off the northwest coast of Kauai. Hawaii News Now.

Facebook founder, wife spent years building relationships before 2nd Kauai land buy. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, recently purchased an additional 600 acres of land on Kauai. They now own more than 1,300 acres on the island. Hawaii News Now.

600 households have applied for rental assistance. Since opening for applications in the first week of May, 600 households have applied for the coronavirus rental and utility assistance program on Kaua‘i, and there’s still funding available. Garden Island.

DOH: No new cases Thursday, clusters under control. Identified clusters from two weeks ago are under control, Dr. Janet Berreman, Kaua‘i District Health Officer, said Thursday, and case counts across the island have trended downward. Garden Island.

Olympic Cafe shut down for mask violations. The state Department of Health announced the cafe was closed Monday, after a Department of Health Food Safety Branch inspector responded to complaints about the establishment’s violations of mask use requirements. Garden Island.

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