Thursday, November 11, 2021

Governor cancels Veterans Day ceremony, Connors acting governor in Ige's, Green's absence, missing girl's adoptive parents charged with her murder, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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2017 Veterans Day parade in Hilo ©2021 All Hawaii News

Governor’s Veterans Day Ceremony has been canceled.
Due to the limiting factors associated with the pandemic, the State Department of Defense in conjunction with the State Office of Veteran's Services has canceled the Governor's Veterans Day Ceremony. KITV4.

Josh Green Raises Money On Mainland For Hawaii Governor’s Race. His absence leaves Hawaii Attorney General Clare Connors to fill in as acting governor while Gov. David Ige is in Scotland. Civil Beat.

HTA October COVID-19 Visitor Satisfaction Study: 81% Rate Hawai‘i Trips as Excellent. Nearly all (94%) of the visitors who were polled in this latest study were fully vaccinated, with one in three travelers indicating they had postponed their trip to Hawaiʻi or waited to visit until the vaccination exemption was in place.  Maui Now.

Hawaii Sues State’s Largest Oil Refiner For Alleged Unpaid Taxes. The State of Hawaii has sued the state’s largest oil refiner, alleging the company relied on a flawed interpretation of state tax law to skirt paying tens of millions of dollars in taxes annually for an unknown number of years. The whistleblower suit against Par Hawaii could have repercussions for other companies operating in Hawaii’s foreign trade zones. Civil Beat.

Questionable Spending And Lax Oversight By Wespac Of Secretive Fisheries Fund
. Federal investigators questioned one out of every $6 the regional fishery council spent over the past decade and documented inappropriate procurement practices. Civil Beat.

Hawaii records 6 new coronavirus-related deaths, 142 additional infections.
The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 69 new cases on Oahu, 28 on Hawaii Island, 13 on Maui, 17 on Kauai one on Lanai, and 14 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Short-term rental bill advances despite confusion.
The Honolulu City Council is considering a measure that would alter the rules for short-term rentals, notably increasing the minimum stay to six months from 30 days for short-term rentals without a special permit. Star-Advertiser.

Adoptive parents of Isabella Kalua arrested for murder in connection with her disappearance. Honolulu police say that the adoptive parents of 6-year-old Isabella Kalua, also known as Ariel Sellers, killed her sometime around mid-August and reported her missing a month later. Both parents were arrested Wednesday for suspicion of second-­degree murder and charged as part of an FBI and Honolulu police investigation into the child’s disappearance. Both are being held without bail. Authorities have not recovered her body, but continue to search the Kalua’s Waimanalo property. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Maui Now.  Hawaii Public Radio.  Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Department of Education finds no bias in how girl’s arrest was handled. The state Department of Education has not found any evidence of bias or wrongdoing by its employees after they called police, who then arrested a 10-year-old Black girl on a campus for allegedly drawing a picture featuring a gun and death threats above the names of students. Star-Advertiser.

Stream contaminated by runoff containing high amounts of drinking alcohol. The state Health Department is now investigating the spill from a storm pipe next the the H-2 Freeway. The state Department of Transportation, which owns the pipe, told the DOH that the spill came from Paradise Beverages, which owns a warehouse across the freeway from the spill site. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

EPA fines Hawaii County for failure to complete wastewater treatment facility design by deadline. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today said it has fined the County of Hawaii $28,500 for its failure to meet a deadline to complete the design of the Pahala Wastewater Treatment Facility. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now.

Hawaiʻi Island Coastal Vulnerability Takes Global Stage.
Hawaiʻi island was recently highlighted on the global stage at the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26. Big Island Video News. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

MFD seeks new tanker to meet Upcountry demand. The Maui Fire Department is proposing a new fire tanker in Kula to assist with the growing number of calls Upcountry, help with response time and water resources and combat the increase in wildfires in the Kahikinui and Kaupo areas. Maui News.

Acting Gov. Connors Declares Disaster Emergency Relief Period for Maui Drought.
Acting Gov. Clare Connors has signed a proclamation that provides relief to Maui County, which has suffered under drought conditions since March 2019. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

Former Kauai Councilman Pleads Guilty To Leading Meth Ring. Former Kauai County Councilman Arthur Brun pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal charges that he led a methamphetamine ring supplied by the United Samoan Organization, a gang that operates in and out of the Hawaii prison system. Civil Beat. Star-Advertiser. Associated Press. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now.

Kaua‘i allows bars, gyms to choose new policies. Effective Friday, high-risk businesses — including bars, restaurants and gyms — can institute their own COVID-19 vaccination or testing policy for entry to reopen to 100% indoor capacity, according to a new county policy. Garden Island.

Kauai Homeowners Worry About ‘Black Slime’ Health Risks. Residents say they feel trapped in new homes plagued by a mysterious water problem that they fear could be making them sick. Civil Beat.

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