Monday, January 31, 2022

Reapportionment Commission adopts new maps, half of all COVID-19 infections came in January, lawmakers push to legalize gambling, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Nene goose in Hawaii ©2022 All Hawaii News

Bill aims to protect endangered species.
House Bill 1979, introduced Wednesday, would require developers whose projects could inadvertently kill or harm a threatened or endangered species to prepare a Habitat Conservation Plan with the Department of Land and Natural Resources beforehand, and would enact penalties for failing to do so. Tribune-Herald.

Commission adopts new Hawaii district maps despite community pushback.
The state Reapportionment Commission stayed the course Friday and finalized House and Senate election maps for the next decade, shaking off resident complaints from Hawaii Island and Oahu, citizen-produced alternative maps and even the threat of lawsuits in its 8-1 decision. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. West Hawaii Today.

Investigative committee finds no criminal wrongdoing by state auditor.
A special House Investigative Committee created last year to look into audits of land management practices by two state agencies began in mid-July, mushroomed to include an investigation of State Auditor Les Kondo himself, and generated at least 30,000 pages of subpoenaed documents — with hundreds, perhaps thousands more, that have yet to be counted. Star-Advertiser.

Legalized gambling gets renewed push. The issue of breaking Hawaii’s prohibition on all forms of legal gambling is once again before the state Legislature — and one bill would cautiously renew the debate over whether the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands should be allowed to build a casino resort to generate badly needed revenue to help clear the backlog of Native Hawaiians waiting for homes. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

$100 tax refund proposal may run into headwinds at the Legislature, Tax Foundation says. The head of the Tax Foundation of Hawaii says Gov. David Ige’s proposal to give every resident a $100 rebate may run into headwinds in the Legislature. Hawaii Public Radio.

Lawmakers consider aid for food banks as need persists. Hawaii’s Legislature typically doesn’t appropriate general fund revenue to support local food banks, but this year such a move is being proposed given extraordinary circumstances. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers push for "Ariel's Bill". The bill would allow staff with child welfare services to continue check ups with families who ARE receiving state payments even after adoption, which is currently not the case. KITV4.

How Hawaii’s School Bus Woes Contribute To Student Absences. The problems seen at the beginning of the school year persist, with 30 school bus routes temporarily suspended last week. Civil Beat.

New bill would allow tow-in surfing in Hawaii’s smaller waves. A bill that would amend state law to allow personal watercraft to tow surfers into waves below high-surf warning levels, as determined by the National Weather Service, has been introduced in the state Senate. Star-Advertiser.

Astronomy adds $110M per year in direct spending, University of Hawaii says. The state’s astronomy sector pumped $110 million into Hawaii’s economy in 2019 and generated an overall economic impact twice that, according to the summary of a University of Hawaii report released Sunday. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Now.

Over 100K COVID infections reported in January as new contagious sub-variant detected in Hawaii. From Jan. 1 through Jan. 30, the Hawaii Department of Health has reported 104,843 COVID-19 cases, which is about half of all COVID infections reported in the state since March 2020. KHON2.

Hawaii records 7 new coronavirus-related deaths, 2,741 additional infections.
The new confirmed and probable infection count includes 1,804 new cases on Oahu, 394 on Hawaii Island, 257 on Maui, 217 on Kauai, five on Molokai, six on Lanai, and 58 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu City Council to consider lowering property tax rate. Lowering the property tax rate is one of several measures the Honolulu City Council's considering as it looks to offset a dramatic increase in residential property assessments. KITV4.

Hawaii legislators seek to fix fireworks problem
. Legislators in both the state House and Senate are exploring ways to clamp down on the escalating use of illegal fireworks, including increased inspection of shipping containers and a new Honolulu Police Department undercover unit to catch users in the act. Star-Advertiser.

Among The Ideas For Screening Honolulu’s Police Chief Candidates: Sleep Deprivation. The proposal by the state’s police union was one of many made in response to the Police Commission’s request for community input on how to pick the next chief. Civil Beat.

Woman with ‘terrifying’ neighbor sues condo board, alleging they failed to stop harassment
. It's a case that is now raising questions about a condo association’s responsibility to protect residents from verbal and potential physical abuse. Hawaii News Now.

Lawmaker calls for DOT transparency as debate grows over road projects on Pali Highway. As debate grows over road projects like raising crosswalks on Pali Highway, one lawmaker is introducing a bill to ensure transparency from the state Department of Transportation. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Senate Bill Aims To Restore Kahaluʻu Beach Park. The proposed legislation considers a recent $50 million grant to the University of Hawaiʻi from Mark Zuckerberg and Dr. Priscilla Chan as a funding source for the project. Big Island Video News.

Water Board OKs consultant to chase federal money. With the prospect of more federal money becoming available for infrastructure funding, the county Water Board recently approved $75,000 to hire a consultant to go after some of it. West Hawaii Today.

Efforts are underway to conserve 2,317 acres of land near Nāʻālehu for lineal descendants. Future plans for more than 2,000 acres of conservation land in Kaʻū on Hawaiʻi Island may include limits to public access — with preference given to lineal descendants and area residents. Hawaii Public Radio.

Quality control: Hawaii Wai Ola provides community access to water testing data. A new dataset, made public this month by Hawaii Wai Ola, gives community members access to high quality, open-source water quality testing data dating back to June 2020. West Hawaii Today.


Court ruling expected to delay solar project. Developers behind a solar and battery project in South Maui say a new court ruling will delay construction on the 15-megawatt solar, 60-megawatt-hour battery storage project slated for 150 acres mauka of Maui Meadows. Maui News.

HTA releases Molokaʻi Destination Management Action Plan progress report. The Hawai‘i Tourism Authority is providing its second update on the progress toward fulfilling the Moloka‘i Destination Management Action Plan or DMAP, which is a part of the Maui Nui DMAP document. Maui News.

Kahekili Highway slope repair project announced. A slope repair project on Maui’s Kahekili Highway will result in road closures from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Feb. 7-16, 2022. Maui Now.

Hundreds of seabirds assisted during Hawaiʻi’s seabird fallout season. Every fall, young seabirds leave their nest to take their first flight towards the ocean and can become disoriented by artificial light, collide with man-made structures, or become exhausted and “fallout,” where they remain vulnerable to automobiles and predators. Maui Now.


Kaua‘i statesman Ezra Kanoho remembered. Solomon Kanoho remembers his father Ezra Kanoho as a man who would stop to help strangers broken down on the side of the road, who would greet people on the street whether he knew them or not, and who — in the interest of public safety — would make his relatives practice CPR at family get-togethers. Garden Island.

First of 3 whale Ocean Counts held Saturday. Sanctuary Ocean Count volunteer Colleen Ogino was hoping to see a breach Saturday at the Ahukini State Recreational Pier viewing site that was sunny, with a calm ocean and just enough of a breeze to keep things cool. Garden Island.

Friday, January 28, 2022

Hawaii safest state in COVID-19 pandemic, Honolulu to drop indoor gathering restrictions, entangled whale freed off Maui, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii restaurant ©2022 All Hawaii News

Report: Hawaii safest state in COVID-19 pandemic. Hawaii is the safest state in the nation to weather the coronavirus, according to a study released Thursday by the online credit reporting company WalletHub. West Hawaii Today.

DLNR expects to bring in $12M from park fees by the end of the fiscal year. Funding to improve and manage Hawaiʻi's natural resources should be getting a boost this year, thanks to increased visitor fees at some popular parks and trails. Hawaii Public Radio.

Bill would unite state law enforcement under Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Senate Bill 3139 would “consolidate and administer the criminal law enforcement and investigations functions of the Department of Transportation, certain investigations functions of the Department of the Attorney General, functions of the Office of Homeland Security, and current law enforcement and investigations functions of the Department of Public Safety.” Star-Advertiser.

Should OHA Get A Bigger Share Of Hawaii’s Public Land Revenues? The ceded land revenues, which make up a significant chunk of OHA’s annual budget, go to fund programs for Hawaiian beneficiaries. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is again asking the Legislature for a greater share of revenue generated by lands formerly held by the Hawaiian Kingdom. Civil Beat.

Hawaii hotel workers rally for bill to eliminate tax exemption. About 150 members of the Unite Here Local 5 union participated in the effort urging the Legislature to end what the union calls a tax loophole for real estate investment trusts, or REITs. Hawaii lawmakers have considered bills to amend state tax policy on REITs every year since 2014 but haven’t had a single bill become law. Star-Advertiser.

Training begins for Hawaii’s next community and political leaders. The first group of 30 emerging leaders who want to play bigger roles in their island communities — including political candidates and the newest member of the state House — began their first day of a 15-week training program Thursday night. The program called “Partners for Democracy” is backed by Pacific Resource Partnership, a nonprofit organization that represents the Hawaii Regional Council of Carpenters and more than 240 Hawaii contractors. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii schools chief search extended 2 months. Hiring a state superintendent of Hawaii’s public schools is taking about two months longer than originally planned. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii records 10 new coronavirus-related deaths, 2,380 additional infections. The new confirmed and probable infection count includes 1,424 new cases on Oahu, 375 on Hawaii Island, 337 on Maui, 161 on Kauai, seven on Molokai, 16 on Lanai and 60 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Mayor Blangiardi to drop large indoor gathering restriction, no booster requirement being discussed. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi said he’ll drop the 50% capacity limit for indoor events on Monday, Jan. 31. KHON2.

Attorney: Ex-City Budget Director Can Prove Donna Leong’s Innocence. The $250,000 retirement payment to disgraced police chief Louis Kealoha was done legally, Leong’s attorney says. Civil Beat.

Navy says it will release investigation into cause of Red Hill water contamination. The Navy says it will release its full investigation into what caused the fuel contamination in its drinking water system, clawing back a statement it released earlier this week that said only a summary of the report’s conclusions would be released to the public. Star-Advertiser.

Water From Contaminated Red Hill Well Will Be Treated, Discharged Into Halawa Stream. As the Navy works to clean up the mess, pressure is building to shut down the Red Hill facility permanently. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

As criticism mounts, police commission eyes ways to speed up chief selection process. It’s already been almost eight months since Susan Ballard retired and it could easily be a full year before HPD’s next leader is chosen. Hawaii News Now.

Applications to open for new affordable rental complex in Honolulu. Starting Feb. 1, applications will be accepted for an affordable rental complex at the site that used to house Honolulu’s juvenile detention center. The affordable housing project “Hale Kalele” is on Piikoi Street and will be near the future rail line. Hawaii News Now.

State to offer federally funded mortgage aid. The state has launched a program funded by the federal government to assist about 1,000 Oahu homeowners hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and who may be in jeopardy of losing their homes. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Hilo Medical Center over capacity; 36 FEMA-funded medical workers assist. Hilo Medical Center is over capacity and has opened 24 additional beds in its extended care unit to accommodate more patients. Tribune-Herald.

Seven students arrested following large affray sparked by racial remarks at Pahoa High. No one was seriously injured Wednesday morning when a large-scale fracas broke out on the Pahoa High School campus, but an 18-year-old man and six juveniles — all students — were arrested, according to police. Tribune-Herald. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Big Island Now. KITV4.

Box Jellyfish Reported At Spencer Beach, Other West Hawaiʻi Spots. State and county officials issued a rare “Ocean Safety” message on Thursday afternoon, warning beachgoers of box jellyfish along West Hawaiʻi shores. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.


Kapalua mansion owner claims to fight ‘noise pollution’ in Cliff House controversy. Questions over shoreline access and public versus private jurisdiction have bubbled to the surface in a controversy that pits a wealthy blockchain entrepreneur against many who frequent the popular Cliff House swimming spot in Kapalua. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now.

Community comes together to restore Haiku playground. Kalakupua Playground reopened over weekend following renovations. Maui Now.

Entangled humpback whale freed of 140 feet of line and gear off Ukumehame, Maui
. An entangled yearling humpback whale was freed of gear by a NOAA-led team of trained responders off Ukumehame, Maui on Wednesday.  Maui Now. Star-Advertiser.


EPA fines Koloa real-estate company, citing illegal cesspool. The federal Environmental Protection Agency has fined real estate firm Hale Kaua‘i $40,000, after finding a large-capacity cesspool at the company’s Waikomo Road property, which operates as Hardware Hawai‘i. Garden Island.

COVID test giveaways continue, 222 new cases Thursday.
The county anticipated a large turnout for its distribution of at-home COVID-19 tests in Kapa‘a, and that anticipation was right. Garden Island.

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Boosters not yet required for Safe Travels, Kahele mulls run for governor, ACLU sues over 10-year-old's arrest, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii beach scene ©2022 All Hawaii News

Lackluster visitor arrivals trigger new concern for tourism-dependent businesses. Sunsets, surf and sand are still draws for visitors to Hawaii, but new statistics show their numbers are lower than usual for this time of year. Hawaii News Now.

Gov. Ige updates emergency proclamation to include Safe Travels restrictions for cruise ships. Gov. David Ige has issued his latest COVID-19 emergency proclamation, which keeps current restrictions in place and adds cruise ship passengers to the list of travelers covered by Safe Travels Hawaii requirements. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Maui Now.

Insiders Say U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele Considering A Run For Governor. If the first-term congressman actually enters the race, it will stir up an already crowded Democratic primary. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Lawmakers consider transferring to OHA an estimated $638M of withheld public land trust revenues. Senate Bill 2021 proposes to help resolve the decades-old dispute over how much of the public land trust revenues should be directed toward the betterment of Native Hawaiians. Hawaii Public Radio.

Lawmakers propose more affordable rentals for middle-income families. Lawmakers in the House have introduced a bill that would put $150 million into the revolving fund for rental housing. But this time, the goal is to provide affordable rentals for middle-income families. KHON2.

Hawaii State Senate committees consider measure prohibiting underground fuel tanks near aquifer. The Senate Committees on Health and Agriculture and Environment held a hearing Wednesday afternoon to consider a bill that would prohibit the operation of and renewal of permits for underground fuel storage tanks within a half-mile of an aquifer. Star-Advertiser.

Bills aim to improve broadband accessibility. After Gov. David Ige on Monday announced his intention to invest $400 million to expand broadband access throughout the state, a host of broadband-related bills were introduced in the state Legislature. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Electric to issue $2M in one-time bill credits to past-due customers. Hawaiian Electric will apply $2 million in bill credits for customers who have struggled to pay their electric bill during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Kōkua Fund Bill Credit Program will automatically provide a one-time credit of $90 to past-due balances for about 22,000 residential and business customers by Jan. 31.  Maui Now.

American Lung Association calls for more action against youth vaping and tobacco use. The American Lung Association is calling for more action from Hawaiʻi lawmakers this year, specifically in addressing flavored tobacco products and youth vaping. Hawaii Public Radio. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Governor Not Requiring Boosters Yet For Hawaii Travels. A third of Hawaii residents have already gotten a third vaccine shot. Civil Beat.

Already full, Hawaii hospitals brace for a possible surge in patients. Hawaii hospitalizations nearly hit a new high Wednesday, with about 2,400 patients getting treatment at facilities statewide. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii records 3 new coronavirus-related deaths, 2,050 additional infections. The new confirmed and probable infection count includes 1,441 new cases on Oahu, 150 on Hawaii Island, 317 on Maui, 99 on Kauai, five on Molokai nine on Lanai and 29 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


City Council advances short-term rental bill. The most notable change the Council is considering is increasing the minimum stay to three months from 30 days for short-term rentals without a special permit. Star-Advertiser.

Public input sought for revised Ala Wai flood project. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the City and County of Honolulu have scheduled public meetings before the release of a new project plan to reduce risk of catastrophic flooding in the Ala Wai watershed. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers propose thousands of affordable homes around a new Aloha Stadium. A state agency is close to narrowing a competition among developers to turn land around Aloha Stadium into a mixed-use community including around 3,000 homes, but state lawmakers are being asked to consider reserving the area for a tremendous amount of affordable housing instead. Star-Advertiser.

Community Concerned Navy’s Defueling Of Red Hill Isn’t Happening Fast Enough. Some city and state lawmakers are not counting on the health department order to protect Oahu’s drinking water. Civil Beat.

ACLU sues city, HPD, DOE over arrest of 10-year-old girl for offensive drawing. The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a civil rights lawsuit in federal court against the city, the state Department of Education and the Honolulu Police Department over the January 2020 arrest of a then-10-year-old girl at Honowai Elementary School. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

City looks to fill thousands of vacancies amid ongoing worker shortage. In order to provide the level of daily services Oahu residents need, Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi said the city needs to employ about 10,000 people. But it only has about 8,000. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Spectators allowed to attend OIA sporting events again starting Monday. Monday is the four-week mark since the league announced it was closing events to the public due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Chung proposes earmark for homelessness programs. Hilo Councilman Aaron Chung wants to earmark part of a luxury tax on second homes to be used to help those who don’t have a home at all. West Hawaii Today.

Public Utilities Commission suspends hearing after bioenergy firm files appeal.
Hu Honua Bioenergy LLC filed an emergency motion with the Hawaii Supreme Court on Wednesday requesting an immediate stay of further proceedings by the state Public Utilities Commission until the Big Island company’s recent appeal to the high court can be resolved. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald.


State pitches $192M housing, civic center project for Kahului.
About 5 acres of state land in Kahului would be transformed into affordable and market-rate housing, along with a civic center for state office space, if state agencies get the green light on a $192 million project. Maui Now.

Maui County says it has the highest COVID-19 positivity rate in the state. Maui County reported more than 7,000 new COVID cases over the last two weeks. Managing Director Sandy Baz says the county has the highest positivity rate in the state. Hawaii Public Radio.

Maui Photo Animation App Maker Sues Competitor
. Plotagraph Inc. alleges the Israeli firm Lightricks has infringed on Plotagraph’s patents. Civil Beat.

That’s no typo. The price of a gallon of unleaded on Lanai hit $6.39 this week. Soaring gas prices have Neighbor Islands residents frustrated as they struggle to cover fuel costs. Hawaii News Now.


Unemployment trending downward on Hawai’i, Kaua‘i still highest in state. Slowly but surely, Kaua’i residents are getting back to work. Garden Island.

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Minimum wage hike advances, Honolulu plans examiner pleads guilty to bribery, Maui mayor tests positive for COVID, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Grocery clerk in Hawaii ©2022 All Hawaii News

Quick start for wage bill: Proposal to hike minimum hourly rate to $18 advances on unanimous vote. A bill that would almost double Hawaii’s minimum wage — incrementally increasing it to $18 per hour by Jan. 1, 2026 — has broken quickly out of the gate at the start of this year’s legislative session. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Hawaii News Now.

Proposed bill would nearly cut Hawaii’s legal limit for drunk driving in half. Some Hawaii lawmakers want to almost cut the legal limit for drunk driving in half. A measure moving through the State Legislature would do just that — but it has gotten pushback in previous years. KHON2.

Hawaii’s state auditor Les Kondo blasts House hearings as ‘hit job’. Auditor Les Kondo has blasted a draft report of a five-month-long special House Investigative Committee that was created to scrutinize two audits but quickly expanded into an investigation of Kondo and his office. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s governor, David Ige, enters his final year in office with a rare show of emotion.
Gov. David Ige regularly thanks the people of Hawaii who have sacrificed and worked together over the past two years of COVID-19, but choked up at the end of his eighth — and last — State of the State address Monday when he spoke in a nearly empty ceremonial room at the state Capitol and wondered to himself when he’ll ever be able to hug and thank people in person. Star-Advertiser. KITV4.

Hawaiian Airlines finishes strong but delays Japan ramp-up.
Hawaiian Airlines said it ended 2021 with strong demand and positive signs of recovery in domestic travel but that it has delayed ramping up service to Japan until the second quarter due to the lingering omicron variant. Star-Advertiser. Bloomberg News.

Gov. Ige confirms booster shot requirement will soon be added to Hawaii’s Safe Travels Program. The requirement would mean travelers to the State of Hawaii would need to have their COVID booster shot in order to by-pass quarantine. The other option for folks not vaccinated or who haven’t gotten their booster would be to get a negative COVID test taken 72 hours before departure. KHON2.

Hawaii sees 1,904 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 206,837.
The  new confirmed and probable infection count includes 1,445 cases on Oahu, 142 on Hawaii Island, 170 on Maui, 90 on Kauai, two on Molokai, six on Lanai and 49 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Former Honolulu city official pleads guilty in permits bribery scheme. A former building plans examiner with the Honolulu planning department pleaded guilty Tuesday to taking bribes in exchange for expediting the approval of permit applications. Associated Press. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Governor Says He’s Not Ready To Permanently Close Red Hill. The governor wants to see proof the Navy can operate the fuel tanks safely but says he’ll consider issuing the facility a new permit. Civil Beat.

Red Hill monitoring results show elevated levels of petroleum chemicals in soil vapor and groundwater. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz on Tuesday pressed the Navy to release its full investigation into what caused the fuel contamination in its drinking water system, saying that it is essential that the public “has a full accounting of the multiple failures at Red Hill.” Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. KITV4.

Plans for fuel storage facilities in the Pacific could offer alternatives to Red Hill. The military has said that Red Hill is strategically important in the Pacific, but concedes there could be alternatives. Hawaii News Now.

Bill proposes to roll out enforcement positions at Wawamalu Beach. A new measure in the state Legislature could lead to more protections for e beach located on the Makapu'u side of Sandy Beach. Bill 2799, introduced by Sen. Chris Lee, aims to designate the area as the Kaiwi Coast State Park under the Department of Land and Natural Resources. KITV4.

Hawaii lawmakers look for federal help, dogs to combat illegal fireworks. Tuesday night, the Pearl City neighborhood board asked for help from state lawmakers and the federal government. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Police misconduct up in ‘21: Five HPD officers terminated, 21 suspended. Five Hawaii County police officers were fired and 21 others suspended without pay in 2021, according to the Hawaii Police Department’s annual disciplinary report to the state Legislature.  West Hawaii Today.

House bill would phase out University of Hawaii, create new Mauna Kea stewardship authority. Oversight of Mauna Kea’s summit would be the purview of a new stewardship authority, instead of the University of Hawaii, under a proposal set to be considered by the state Legislature. House Bill 2024 requires the new entity to develop a framework to limit astronomy development and create a plan to return the summit to its natural state. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald. Associated Press.

Big Island bioenergy firm appeals case to the Supreme Court again. Hu Honua Bioenergy LLC, which has been entangled in a multiyear fight to begin operating a biomass plant on Hawaii Island, will have its case heard before the Hawaii Supreme Court for the third time as it attempts to win approval from the state Public Utilities Commission for the $474 million project. Star-Advertiser.

PIT count returns: Annual survey of homelessness underway. The annual Point in Time Count is underway on the Big Island with volunteers and advocates working to provide a snapshot of all those experiencing homelessness in the community. West Hawaii Today.


Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino tests positive for COVID-19. Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino tested positive for COVID-19 today. His office announced all close contacts have been notified and the mayor is in isolation at home. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.  Maui Now. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Council Member Mike Molina announces bid for Maui mayor.
Known for his public school teaching and Maui County Council tenure, Mike Molina announced Tuesday evening that he will leave his Makawao-Haʻikū-Pāʻia residency seat in a bid for mayor.  Maui Now.

Sen. Schatz to discuss infrastructure bill’s local impacts at Maui Council committee. The Maui County Council’s Infrastructure and Transportation Committee will meet Thursday, Jan. 27, at 9 a.m. to hear a presentation by US Senator Brian Schatz on local impacts of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021, signed into law by President Biden on Nov. 15. Maui Now.


Wilcox Elementary School transitions to remote learning. Tuesday, Wilcox Elementary School transitioned to a distance-learning model that will last through and including Thursday. Garden Island.

Menehune Road in Waimea reopens. Menehune Road, at the site of a rockfall earlier this month, has reopened, according to officials Tuesday. Garden Island.

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Hawaii State of the State: Gov. Ige proposes $100 tax rebates to all, $18 minimum wage bill advances, Maui first county to require booster to be fully vaxxed, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. David Ige delivers State of the State Jan. 24, 2022 PC: Governor's Office

Gov. David Ige proposes $100 refund for every Hawaii taxpayer and their dependents. Gov. David Ige proposed refund checks of $100 for every taxpayer and each of their dependents that would pump $110 million from the state general fund into the economy during his eighth and final State of the State speech Monday. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Associated Press. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Maui Now. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Full text of Gov. David Ige's State of the State address can be found here.

Hawaii minimum wage increase bill advances. A bill to raise Hawaii’s minimum hourly wage incrementally to $18 by 2026 cleared the first of two anticipated public hearings in the state Senate on Monday. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Now. Garden Island.

Proposed bill prevents illegal vacation homes from advertising. HB1516 affects businesses without state or county licensing. This would prevent illegal vacation rentals from promoting their services on cards, signs and media. Hawaii Public Radio.

Bills aim to reduce number of abandoned vehicles. A Big Island lawmaker is spearheading a suite of bills aimed at reducing the amount of abandoned vehicles in Hawaii. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii’s unemployment rate tumbles to 5.7%. Hawaii’s unemployment rate dropped sharply in December to a 21-month low of 5.7% as the state’s economy continued making significant strides in recovering from the nearly 2-year-old pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii GOP Has A New Candidate For Governor. Lynn Mariano is a retired veteran who calls himself a uniter. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s COVID-19 cases may be peaking, but not hospitalizations. Hawaii’s COVID-19 infection rate appears to be stabilizing, Hilton Raethel, president and CEO of the Healthcare Association of Hawaii, said Monday. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s COVID-19 boosted numbers rise slightly
, while overall vaccinated data dips after review. Revised data, arising from a review of vaccination reporting, shows an increase in booster shots administered and a decrease in vaccinations completed to date, the announcement said. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii sees 2,660 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 204,933. The new confirmed and probable infection count includes 1,554 new cases on Oahu, 303 on Hawaii Island, 456 on Maui, 285 on Kauai, 13 on Molokai, 16 on Lanai and 33 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu Council considers new rules for short-term rentals. The Honolulu City Council is again considering a measure that would alter the rules for short-term rentals, notably increasing the minimum stay proposal to three months from 30 days unless a special permit is granted. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Senate Bill Takes Aim At Red Hill Fuel Facility. The bill is the first state legislative effort to shut down the Red Hill fuel facility since the Navy poisoned the water supply of 93,000 people. Civil Beat.

Navy to withhold full Red Hill fuel leak report. The Navy is now hedging on the release of a much-anticipated investigation into the source of the petroleum contamination that began sickening families in late November. Star-Advertiser.

Red Hill water crisis taking toll on students, teachers say. About a dozen teachers spoke out publicly for the first time Monday about what they have witnessed and felt since the running water at their schools was declared off-limits due to possible fuel contamination. Star-Advertiser.

Notorious Pearl City cemetery to get new website, GPS system. Community members say an owner-less cemetery in Pearl City notorious for its homeless camps, sinkholes, and overgrown grass continues to be a danger. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Struggling to achieve: More support needed on the Big Island for special needs children and adults. Parents of special needs children say there’s a lack of support for them on the Big Island — and the pandemic has only made it worse. Tribune-Herald.

Pathways to productivity
: Programs help people with special needs thrive after high school. Editor’s note:Life after high school is not always an easy transition for students with special needs, but some programs on the Big Island are giving students an avenue to a brighter future. Tribune-Herald.


Maui County booster requirement now in effect. A booster shot is now required to be considered fully vaccinated in Maui County. KHON2. Hawaii News Now.

Maui Commission Wants Public’s Feedback On 40 Reforms To Local Government. A citizens commission has consolidated 135 ideas on how to refine county governance into 40 Maui County Charter amendment proposals. Now it wants the public’s help to finalize the list for voters. Civil Beat.

Deer on Kahului Airport runway prompts additional fencing.
A reinforced fence has been installed around Kahului Airport after a deer blocked a runway earlier this month. Associated Press.


County of Kaua‘i begins distribution of free at-home COVID-19 tests.  Free COVID-19 home test kits ran out within a half hour at the Kekaha Neighborhood Center, where the county, in partnership with the state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office, began its distribution of about 15,000 kits islandwide. Garden Island. KITV4.

Monday, January 24, 2022

Ige to give final state of the state address today, Republicans continue to drop out of Legislature, $230M in bonds sold for airport improvements, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Honolulu airport July 31, 2021 My Kailua Community Facebook page

Newly sold bonds will fund $230 million for essential airport projects in Hawaiʻi.  The Airports Division of the Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation has sold new airports system revenue bonds to fund approximately $230 million of essential projects to modernize and expand air service facilities across the state.  Maui Now.

Pandemic Cloud Lingers As Ige Prepares His Final State Of The State Address. Hawaii was on the upswing for most of Ige’s two terms as governor, but his most recent speeches reflect more troubled times. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Tourism Authority shifting focus to a new type of visitor, aims to educate about the state. Tourism numbers are still below pre-COVID pandemic levels and for the first time, the Hawaii Tourism Authority has to make a budget request to the state legislature. KHON2.

State report: Single adult on Oahu needs to earn $18 an hour to cover basic needs. The Senate Committee on Labor, Culture and the Arts is scheduled to hear SB 2018 on Monday, the same day House leadership is expected to introduce its minimum wage bill. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Caucuses multiply in Hawaii, focusing on specific legislation. Three new caucuses are introducing bills in the 2022 legislative session, which began Wednesday, joining eight other formal caucuses and some informal ones that have been around for many years with like-minded lawmakers trying to get laws enacted by banding together. Star-Advertiser.

Rep. Val Okimoto To Seek Honolulu City Council Seat. Her departure would leave just two Republicans in the House, Rep. Lauren Matsumoto and Rep. Gene Ward. Kurt Fevella is the sole Republican in the Hawaii state Senate. Civil Beat.

Char: Number of state COVID cases ‘very concerning’. The state health director said she thinks “it’s a bit early” to say Hawaii’s surge of COVID-19 cases fueled by the omicron variant has plateaued. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii part of clinical trials for new Omicron-specific vaccine. Volunteers a 50-50 chance of getting the new Omicron vaccine being tested or a 4th dose of the current formula. KITV4.

Hawaii records 4 new coronavirus-related deaths, 3,167 additional infections. The new confirmed and probable infection count includes 2,078 new cases on Oahu, 371 on Hawaii Island, 493 on Maui, 168 on Kauai, 10 on Molokai, 11 on Lanai, and 36 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


State has yet to release new rules cracking down on beach revetments.
Property owners are legally allowed to keep the emergency protections in place only temporarily, but state officials have allowed walls of sandbags to remain in front of some properties for years, and even decades, after issuing repeated approvals or losing track of them, an investigation in December 2020 by the Star-Advertiser and ProPublica found. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Roy Amemiya Wants City Documents To Fight His Conspiracy Indictment. The City Says No. The former Honolulu managing director’s public records request was rejected by city attorneys. Civil Beat.

City can also represent Honolulu officers in teen’s shooting. Honolulu attorneys may represent both the city and three police officers in a civil lawsuit by the family of a 16-year-old boy shot and killed by police, a judge ruled Friday in response to a motion by the teen’s relatives arguing the officers need to have their own lawyers to avoid conflicts of interest. Associated Press. Hawaii News Now.

West Oahu Reps Plan To Tackle Traffic, Tech And The Cost Of Living. Lawmakers want the public to weigh in this session on the bills that matter most to their communities. Civil Beat.

A deal to sell plots of land to Waialua farmers moves ahead. At a time when some of Hawaii’s most productive farm lands are making way for housing development, developer Peter Savio is acquiring the fee interest on 280-acres of agricultural land from owner Dole Plantation to help preserve agriculture. He’s dividing the land and selling individual lots of one to 10 acres to Dole’s tenants at little profit. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Navy water quality results to be made public faster, according to the Interagency Drinking Water System Team. Drinking water quality test results for the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam water system will be made public faster, according to news release today from the the Interagency Drinking Water System Team. Star-Advertiser.

Army breaks ground on new maintenance hangar at Wheeler Airfield.
The Army broke ground last week for a new maintenance facility at Wheeler Army Airfield that’s intended to begin replacing the 90-year-old facilities the service has relied on at the historic base. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

North Kona, South Kohala vacation rental hotspots. North Kona and South Kohala are home to about 80% of short-term vacation rentals on the island and 87% of complaints about STVRs registered countywide with the Planning Department. West Hawaii Today.

‘A quandary’ in Hilo: Frustration mounts for KIA lease holders seeking extensions from the DLNR. Nearly four years later, an attempt to revitalize the heart of Hilo has almost completely halted after sinking into a governmental morass. Tribune-Herald.

Council rejects contractor for Leeward Planning Commission. The County Council last week rejected its second nominee to the Leeward Planning Commission in six months, saying the candidate, Shane Vincent of Waimea, would bring too much of a developer perspective to the board. West Hawaii Today.

Phase of Kalanianā’ole Avenue Reconstruction in Hilo Pushed Back. The state Department of Transportation announced Saturday that the portion of the project from Kamehameha/Railroad Avenue to Kauhane Avenue is now expected to begin in April because of contract and supply availability issues.  Big Island Now.


Victorino, Bissen Dive In Early To Maui Mayor Race. The county’s voters will elect a mayor in November following the nonpartisan August primary. Civil Beat.

New law impacts some vacation rentals and Grand Wailea expansion. Moratorium pauses new visitor lodgings, but some may still be developed under bill’s exceptions. Under the new law, which went into effect on Jan. 7, new transient accommodations, such as hotels, timeshares, short-term rental homes and transient vacation rental units, are prohibited in all zoning districts on Maui. Maui News.

Maui ranked among top destinations on Expedia and Vrbo 2022 searches.
Maui, Hawaʻi is ranked the #2, 2022 destination based on trip searches on Vrbo and #5 based on trip searches on Expedia. Maui Now.

Hawaii’s Strictest Pandemic Policies Have Created A Lonely Existence For Kalaupapa’s Surviving ‘Outcasts’. Kalaupapa’s last living leprosy patients confront state-mandated social isolation policies that continue to prohibit visits by family and friends. Civil Beat.


Tourism officials talk top priorities in 2022. Island tourism officials have a game plan for 2022, one year after the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority debuted county-by-county Destination Management Action Plans to address a changing visitor industry. Garden Island.

Run-up to KIUC board of directors election underway.
Three seats on the Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative’s board of directors are up for grabs this March, and the run-up to the election is just beginning. Garden Island.

Friday, January 21, 2022

Mauna Kea master plan approved, 80-year-old Marine Corps battalion deactivated, Maui first in state to require booster for full vaccination, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Telescopes on Mauna Kea ©2022 All Hawaii News

After years of debate, University of Hawaii regents approve Mauna Kea Master Plan despite testimony condemning Thirty Meter Telescope. The University of Hawaii Board of Regents on Thursday approved an updated Mauna Kea Master Plan that guides oversight of the mountain for the next 20 years and accommodates the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope if and when it is built. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Marine Corps to deactivate Hawaii battalion after 80 years of service. After 80 years of service, the Marine Corps will deactivate the Hawaii-based Island Warriors of the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment that fought in Bougainville, Guam, the Republic of Vietnam, Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan. KHON2.

Hawaii public-school student absences up dramatically in latest COVID-19 surge, report finds.
A new report shows for the first time the dramatic rise in student absences at Hawaii public schools during the surge of the COVID- 19 omicron variant, with many schools reporting absentee rates two to four times higher than pre-pandemic levels. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

DOE: Nearly 3,400 COVID cases reported among students, staff amid Omicron surge. A new state report shows the spiking number of infections within Hawaii’s public school system amid the Omicron surge. Hawaii News Now.

Retention rate of Hawaii public school teachers after 5 years of employment just over 50%. The retention rate of Hawaii public school teachers after five years of employment stubbornly hovered at just over 50% last school year despite multiple state efforts, including an incentive program for teachers in hard-to-retain categories that has cost $34.5 million so far. Star-Advertiser.

Advisory panel formed to help find next DOE superintendent. As the search continues for the permanent head of Hawaii’s public schools, an advisory group is now in place to help with the selection process. The panel includes public school teachers, a parent and other community and education leaders, including UH President David Lassner. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Senate bill would hike minimum wage to $12 an hour on Oct. 1. The state Senate has introduced its version of a bill to raise Hawaii’s $10.10 an hour minimum wage — starting with an initial jump to $12 per hour starting Oct. 1. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

University of Hawaii Is Considering A Covid Booster Shot Mandate
. The university’s president, David Lassner, said the move would be in line with current discussions at the state and county level. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

FEMA will provide Hawaiʻi with $48M to pay for 1,000 temporary medical staff. The advance funding represents half of the $95.8 million sought by the Hawaiʻi State Department of Health at the request of the Healthcare Association of Hawaiʻi, the state said in a news release. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii records 9 new coronavirus-related deaths, 5,911 additional infections. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 3,901 new cases on Oahu, 567 on Hawaii Island, 996 on Maui, 276 on Kauai, 43 on Molokai, 28 on Lanai and 100 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu Councilman Proposes Short-Term Rental Compromise. A proposed crackdown on short-term vacation rentals on Oahu has been amended to address several areas of criticism from rental operators, a move that is getting a mixed reaction from the community. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Federal prosecutors who led corruption probe into Kealohas make it clear they’re not finished. A week after three ex-city executives were arrested by the FBI for conspiracy, agents and the special prosecutor investigating public corruption in Honolulu were back before a federal grand jury. Hawaii News Now.

Changes to fares for TheBus, TheHandi-Van up for public input. Seven proposals are being considered by the Honolulu Rate Commission. One of them would introduce residency requirements for someone to be eligible for discounted fares. Another would allow free transfers between TheHandi-Van and TheBus. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Mayor Taps Former Fire Chief To Join Honolulu Police Commission. Kenneth Silva’s nomination needs to be approved by the Honolulu City Council. Civil Beat.

City lawyers’ ouster from Iremamber Sykap case sought. Attorneys representing the family of a 16-year-old boy who was shot and killed by Honolulu police following an alleged crime spree and car chase are seeking to disqualify the city Department of the Corporation Counsel from defending both the officers and the city against civil accusations of negligence and wrongful death. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Homeowners To Get $50 Million In Federal Relief Funds. On Friday, Oahu homeowners have an opportunity to apply for up to $30,000 for each household through the first mortgage relief program on Hawaii’s most populous island. Relief funds can go toward mortgage coverage, property taxes, utility payments, homeowners association fees and other expenses. Civil Beat.

7 public schools still can’t use tap water as contamination crisis drags on.
Nearly two months after tests revealed tainted water coming from the faucets at more than a half dozen public schools, health officials say it’s still not safe to use the tap. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

State land use panel rejects Connections’ permit request. The state Land Use Commission on Thursday denied by a 6-0 vote an application by Connections New Century Public Charter School for a special use permit to build a campus on about 70 acres of leased agricultural-zoned state land in Hilo. Tribune-Herald.

Request to Change Land Use Classification for Site of Proposed Affordable Housing Project Moves Forward. The Hawai’i County Council on Wednesday approved the first reading of a land-use amendment request so an affordable housing project in Hilo can move forward. Big Island Now.


Maui becomes first island to add COVID booster shot for full vaccination status. Starting on Jan. 24, the COVID-19 booster shot will be a part of Maui’s Safer Outside program — it is a county program that requires businesses such as bars, gyms and restaurants to verify proof of vaccination. KHON2.

Maui Police 25% short staffed: 21 resignations, 13 retirements in 2021. The Maui Police Department is more than 25% short staffed with 145 vacancies department wide. According to department reports, there are 101 sworn vacancies, which is at 75% staffing; and 44 civilian vacancies for 70% staffing in that portion of the department. Maui Now.

Plan seeks more natural solutions to flood risks
. Stabilized dunes, green flood walls among the proposals in Kihei plan. Reduced wetland areas due to development in South Maui, drought and degraded watersheds and intense storms are creating a “formula for disaster” and leading to “mud floods” that pollute the ocean as they did in a recent storm, a local water quality expert said. Maui News.

State leaders disagree on who should spearhead Maui County's axis deer problems. State Sen. Lynn DeCoite says that while she believes in a multi-pronged approach that includes government and community, the Department of Land and Natural Resources should be leading the effort. Hawaii Public Radio.


County of Kaua‘i seeks to avoid Kekaha Landfill crisis. With the Kekaha Landfill nearing its capacity, the county is scrambling for solutions to avoid a potential garbage disaster. Garden Island.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Hawaii Legislature plans $18 minimum wage, $600M to clear Hawaiian Homes backlog as 2022 session begins, Kahele criticizes state coronavirus response, issues his own 10-point plan, state short long-term care beds, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii House 2022 opening day PC:House GOP

Hawaii House leaders vow to clear Hawaiian Home Lands backlog, raise minimum wage and decommission Red Hill. Leaders in the state House of Representatives set a high bar Wednesday on the Opening Day of the new legislative session by proposing $600 million to help clear the backlog of Native Hawaiians waiting to get into livable homes, raising Hawaii’s $10.10 an hour minimum wage to $18 and demanding the Department of Defense remove its fuel and tanks at Red Hill and decommission the system. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Associated Press. Maui Now. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Senate sets agenda in semi-virtual session. During the Opening Day floor session, Senate President Ron Kouchi reiterated and elaborated on previously stated legislative priorities for members to address this year, including ways to improve affordable housing, education, local food production, mental health care as well as alleviate homelessness and address the minimum wage. Star-Advertiser.

Opening remark
s from the state Senate and House for the 2022 legislative session. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Tourism Officials Are Seeking ‘Mindful, Respectful And High-Value Travelers’. The state tourism authority is asking the Legislature for funding to rebrand Hawaii and attract visitors who might volunteer to plant trees, clean beaches and care for taro patches. Civil Beat.

Mark Zuckerberg donates $50M to University of Hawaii to study impact of climate change on ocean. The University of Hawaii today announced a $50 million gift over seven years from billionaire Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, for research about the impact of climate change on the ocean. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Maui Now. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now.

Substitute Teachers Are In High Demand But Short Supply In Hawaii. As of Jan. 11, the Department of Education system had 3,922 substitutes, down from 4,738 in the 2019-20 school year. Civil Beat.

Staffing shortages leave scores of Hawaii hospital patients ‘waitlisted’ for long-term care beds. Health officials say there are approximately 150 “waitlisted” patients in hospitals across the state. That means the person needs to be in a nursing home or some type of skilled nursing facility but that there isn’t an available bed. Hawaii News Now.

In rare rebuke of state’s COVID response, Kahele offers 10-point plan to rein in surge. In a video and news release timed for the Legislature’s opening Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele issued a 10-point plan that he said will curb the ongoing COVID surge by encouraging more people to get boosted and by improving safety in the schools and workplace. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii sees 3,929 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 184,767. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 3,026 new cases on Oahu, 240 on Hawaii Island, 397 on Maui, 198 on Kauai, 20 on Molokai, 17 on Lanai and 31 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.


Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi may add booster to Safe Access O‘ahu plan. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi stopped short of announcing any policy changes Wednesday during a press conference with Hawaii’s hospital leaders, but implored residents to get tested and boosted amid the recent COVID-19 surge in omicron cases. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Personal injury firms prepare to sue Navy for water contamination. Former Hawaii Attorney General Margery Bronster has paired up with a mainland firm to seek compensation for Navy water users, marking the latest legal action taken in response to the Navy’s Red Hill water contamination saga. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

New HPD Website Streamlines Gun Registration on Oahu. Second amendment advocates will no longer have to make multiple trips to register a gun with the Honolulu Police Department. KITV4.

Cyberattacks’ impact lingers at Hawaii businesses. A month after cybercriminals shut down a third-party, cloud-based timekeeping system used by employees of The Queen’s Health Systems, the Honolulu Board of Water Supply, city Emergency Medical Services workers and thousands of businesses and organizations nationwide, some supervisors continue to use manual record-keeping to track work hours and leave time. Star-Advertiser.

The state is partnering with the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement to provide $50 million to help homeowners. The Oahu housing assistance fund will offer up to $30,000 per eligible homeowner to help with mortgage, utilities, taxes and association fees. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Wastewater tops Roth’s legislative priority list. A measure privatizing or creating public-private partnerships to handle wastewater projects is Mayor Mitch Roth’s top priority for the 2022 legislative session that started Wednesday. West Hawaii Today.

Kupuna relish return of senior activities. Kamana Senior Center has officially welcomed kupuna back to classes after 21 months of inactivity. Tribune-Herald.

Parents plead with Big Island school sports league to lift ban on spectators. Hawaii County parents are pleading with Big Island Interscholastic Federation officials to change its ban on fans at school sports games. The rule went into effect on Jan. 4 due to the ongoing surge in coronavirus cases. Hawaii News Now.


Pandemic still central to lawmakers’ priorities. Legislative session kicks off today with focus on housing, infrastructure, economy, other issues. From improving infrastructure to boosting health care training on Maui as well as addressing the ongoing effects of the pandemic, Maui County’s state legislators will have lots to handle this legislative session. Maui News.

Council aims to get handle on Maui downhill bike industry. Decades-old concerns over Maui downhill bicycling have been resurfacing in recent months, and many hope Maui County Council deliberations on the topic will help pave a new, safer path forward. Maui Now.

Workforce housing lottery for Hale Kaiola in South Maui set for March 4. The lottery will determine which successful applicants will secure one of the new housing units at the project site, which is planned for construction at the corner of Kaiola Place and ʻOhukai Road, a few blocks mauka from Mai Poina ‘Oe Ia’u and Kalepolepo Beach Park. Maui Now.

Submarine, ship, jet and balloon-type object off Maui, part of Naval exercise
. Maui Now began receiving reports from witnesses on Tuesday morning, of a ship with some type of floating object above it, about one mile offshore of Hoʻokipa, Maui. Maui Now.


Responders pull 2,000 feet of debris from entangled whale, but some remains. Federal and state responders have removed 2,000 feet of heavy-gauge line from an adult humpback whale first sighted off Brennecke’s Beach last Sunday. Garden Island.