Friday, March 18, 2022

Gas passes $5 a gallon, UH to keep classroom mask mandate, PETA seeks criminal charges against Kauai slaughterhouse, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii Tourism Authority awaits procurement for contract to promote Hawaii. The Hawaii Tourism Authority contract to supply destination management services and promote Hawaii to the U.S. market, the islands’ largest visitor source, is still up in the air at a time when travel spots across the world are competing to tap into rebounding travel demand. Star-Advertiser.

Japanese are eager to visit Hawaii: Lifting of restrictions there removes major barrier to travel. With Japan dropping its emergency COVID-19 restrictions next week, visitors from the country could start to return to Hawaii en masse as soon as next month. Tribune-Herald.

Across Hawaii, gas is over $5 a gallon, enticing some to electric vehicles. Soaring gas prices are leading some motorists to rethink how they get around. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

House sends budget proposal to Senate for further consideration. A state budget proposal is crossing over from the House to the Senate for further consideration. The measure will distribute more than $25 billion. Hawaii Public Radio.

Bill to support public high school surf teams advances. A measure to provide funding to support surfing as an interscholastic sport in Hawaii remains alive this legislative session. West Hawaii Today.

Committee passes bill aimed at reducing Hawaii's female prison population. House Bill 2312 proposes to establish the women's corrections implementation commission in the judiciary. The commission would develop a plan so that women who commit non-violent crimes, especially women with underage children, could participate in a rehab program instead of going to jail. KITV4.

University of Hawaiʻi Updates COVID-19 Guidelines, Face Mask Rules. Face mask requirements will be relaxed but will still be mandated for certain indoor activities on campus. Big Island Video News. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Popular Deaf School Principal Gets His Job Back. The Hawaii Department of Education acted in an “arbitrary and capricious” manner when it demoted and reassigned the principal of the Hawaii School for the Deaf and the Blind to a lower-level position at a different school three years ago, an arbitrator hearing a grievance in the case concluded late last month. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Bill to extend time for condominium owners to comply with fire safety codes passes. The Honolulu City Council voted to pass a measure that gives condominium owners more time to comply with a law that requires them to install fire sprinklers or pass a safety evaluation. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio.

Honolulu City Council eyes HART budget amid proposal to stop short of Ala Moana. The Honolulu City Council gave initial approval Wednesday for next year’s budget for the agency overseeing the rail transit project. Hawaii Public Radio.

Federal attorneys file additional counts against former corporation counsel Donna Leong. The first superseding indictment was filed in U.S. District Court on Thursday afternoon, in the case against Leong, former city managing director Roy Amemiya, and former Honolulu Police Commission chair Max Sword. In the documents filed, five counts were added on, specifically against Leong, accusing her of making false statements to the FBI. KITV4.

U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele calls for return of Makua Valley land.
U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele has introduced legislation requiring the cleanup, restoration and return of 782 leased acres of Oahu’s Makua Military Reservation used for live-fire training from 1942 to 2004 to the state of Hawaii. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

U.S. House approves heritage designation for Kaena Point.
Kaena Point, the remote westernmost tip of Oahu, could become Hawaii’s first National Heritage Area under a bill approved by the U.S. House of Representatives. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

Hawaii Island

Closures Planned for Helicopter Operations at Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park. The reason for the closures is to provide public safety during the removal of invasive, non-native vegetation using a helicopter. Big Island Now.

Underground cable work on Kalanianaole Avenue. The Hawaii Department of Transportation said Thursday there will be work install underground cable between Monday and April 22 on Kalanianaole Avenue in Keaukaha. Tribune-Herald.

Kona restaurant issued yellow placard. Kai Eats and Drinks was inspected after a complaint was made to the Food Safety Branch by a customer who became ill after consuming a salad. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Maui Condo Owners Want To Tax Themselves To Save Their Homes From Rising Seas. Are Community Facilities Districts a win-win? Property owners pay to protect their condos, and the public gets to enjoy improved beaches and infrastructure. Civil Beat.

Councilmember King to host community town hall on affordable housing, March 22. Councilmember Kelly Takaya King hosts an in-person town hall on March 22 at 6 p.m. at the Malcolm Center, 1305 N. Holopono St., to discuss affordable housing and address residents’ questions on affordable housing. Maui Now.

Kauai

Native Hawaiian homestead nonprofit buys Kauai affordable rental property. A Native Hawaiian homestead nonprofit recently purchased an affordable rental property on Kauai, advancing a first-of-its-kind project. The nonprofit’s leaders say the initiative is an effort to keep more rentals at affordable rates, particularly during the economic challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

PETA seeks criminal charges against Wailua slaughterhouse. International animal-welfare organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wants the Kaua‘i county prosecutor to investigate a local slaughterhouse. Garden Island.

Feds: Paco’s Tacos withheld over $62K in overtime, tips. Federal investigators have recovered nearly $63,000 in back wages and liquidated damages for 42 employees of Paco’s Tacos Cantina, a restaurant with four locations on Kaua‘i and one on O‘ahu. Garden Island.


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