Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Hawaii opens to international travelers Monday, Honolulu and Maui restaurant restrictions lifted, 'green fee' tax could hit tourists next year, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

New international travel rules start Monday.
Hawaii’s travel industry reacted positively Tuesday to Gov. David Ige’s announcement that the state will welcome international travelers to Hawaii under new federal requirements beginning Monday and that it also would ease requirements for fully vaccinated domestic travelers. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Associated Press. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Maui Now. KHON2.

Tourism experts: Wooing international travelers back is key to Hawaii’s recovery. Economic experts project Hawaii’s efforts to welcome back international visitors will have an enormous impact on the state’s financial recovery. But arrivals won’t soar overnight. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii to lift some restaurant, bar capacity limits as COVID-19 count drops.
Hawaii Gov. David Ige said today he will lift restaurant, bar and gym capacity limits in counties that require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter such businesses. Associated Press. Maui Now.  Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Hawaii tourism agency considers 'Visitor Green Fee' to upkeep natural resources.
Another tourist tax will be considered when the Legislature goes back into session. This one would be to protect the environment. It's called a Visitor Green Fee and it would levy a surcharge on visitors to Hawaii. KITV4.

Chamber of Commerce leader Sherry Menor-­McNamara running for lieutenant governor. Menor-McNamara said she wants to bring fresh ideas and perspectives as a political outsider who represents Hawaii’s businesses, especially when it comes to addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and Hawaii’s economic recovery. Star-Advertiser.

How Politics And Lobbying Have Shaped Federal Fisheries Policies In The Pacific. A Civil Beat investigation into the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council shows its longtime director and loyal council members have for decades used questionable strategies to help commercial fishermen. Civil Beat.

Illegal Fishing Citations Are Down But Not Necessarily Due To A Drop In Violators. The number of citations for fishing violations off Hawaii shores are down nearly 75% this year compared to last, but a senior official blamed staffing woes and other challenges that may have allowed violators to avoid getting caught. Civil Beat.

Hawaii set to roll out over 41,000 doses for keiki ages 5-11.
Hawaii’s Department of Health pre-ordered 41,700 doses, which they began receiving Monday. Some hospitals are ready to put shots into arms as soon as Wednesday. KHON2.

Hawaii sees 38 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 84,402. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 14 new cases on Oahu, 13 on Hawaii Island, three on Maui, nine on Kauai and one probable case removed for Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Fevella Sues HART Over Its Changes To Voting Rules. The Hawaii state Senator who represents Ewa Beach is suing the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation over its board’s recent maneuver to change voting and quorum rules. Civil Beat.

Citizen Group Announces Intention To Sue Navy Over Red Hill Tanks. The Navy says it plans to install “secondary containment” in its tanks or defuel them by 2045. Local activists are saying that’s not fast enough. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s 4 members of Congress doubt safety at Red Hill. All four members of Hawaii’s congressional delegation said Monday in a letter to the secretary of the Navy that they have “increasing concerns” about the safety of the Navy’s fuel operations in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now.

Flight recorders, wreckage of TransAir flight 810 recovered from waters off Oahu. The flight recorders and wreckage of a Boeing 737-200 cargo plane that crashed in waters off Oahu in July have been successfully recovered, the National Transportation Safety Board announced today. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Kewalo Basin Harbor Mud Discharge Likely Violated Law, Health Official Says. Harbor tenants have blamed the developer Howard Hughes Corp.’s construction site for the problems, but officials say the source is unknown. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Club to be transformed into Hawaiian youth support center. The project involves an estimated $65 million renovation to create a center serving up to 300 children and young adults at a time, and follows the trust’s purchase of the seven-story property at the corner of Ward Avenue and South King Street for $21 million in December. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Ige’s latest order won’t impact Big Island.
Indoor establishments can waive the current state rules limiting capacity to 50% if a county has implemented a policy requiring COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID test obtained within two days. Tribune-Herald.

Popular Waipiʻo Valley Trail, Campground to Close for Regular Upkeep. Muliwai trail and Waimanu campground will be shut down to all users between Nov. 15-18 to allow DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife's regular upkeep of the area, which include maintaining proper function of the Clivus composting toilets, litter pickup, removing fallen trees, and clearing landslides and use of herbicide to control invasive plants. Big Island Now.


New visitor lodging tax takes effect; notices mailed out. A new tax that imposes an additional 3 percent on visitor lodgings in Maui County took effect on Monday. Maui News.

Residents oppose state plan for Kaanapali beach restoration work. Residents from Lahaina recently issued a warning to the state that they will do everything possible to stop a controversial beach restoration project from moving forward at Ka’anapali Beach. Maui News.


Kawakami: New state order ‘essentially forces’ vaccine requirements. Mayor Derek Kawakami said he and his administration had “no intention of creating a vaccine or test program for private businesses, because we believe our businesses already know how to operate safely.” Garden Island.

Kaua‘i contractors navigate supply chain disruptions. Material shortages are causing some delays in construction, but suppliers and contractors are adjusting, with some financial costs. Garden Island.

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