Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Help wanted in tourist industry, no COVID-19 cases in ICU as Hawaii hits milestone, Honolulu mayor and council spar over stimulus funding, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands


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Hawaii sees labor crisis in visitor industry.
The Hawaii Tourism Authority is now launching an industry survey to determine the type of job skills and training that are needed in the visitor industry. KHON2.

Ige supports rebate plan: Proposal would give back $300 to most taxpayers. Gov. David Ige on Monday said an agreement by lawmakers to triple his original rebate proposal to the state’s taxpayers and their dependents is “a great move for our community.” Tribune-Herald.

Ige doesn’t anticipate return of mask mandate. Gov. David Ige said Monday he is not currently considering reinstating a mask requirement for public indoor spaces. Hawaii was the last state in the nation to lift its indoor mask mandate at the end of March. Associated Press. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii reaches pandemic milestone -- no COVID-19 cases in the ICU for the first time. Monday marks the first time in almost two years there are zero COVID-19 patients in intensive care units statewide. KITV4.

A key tax credit for working class families is about to expire. Some lawmakers want it extended. The Hawaii Earned Income Tax Credit is set to expire at the end of the year. A new bill proposes to extend the credit for another six years. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaiʻi is spending $417 less on services per child compared to 2005, report says. Over the course of nearly two decades, the state is spending about $400 less per child than in 2005, according to a new report from advocacy groups Hawaii Budget and Policy Center and Hawaii Children's Action Network. Hawaii Public Radio.

2022 could be a big year for Native Hawaiian issues at the Capitol. Here are the measures to know. With just four weeks remaining in this year’s legislative session, 2022 is potentially shaping up to be a big year for Native Hawaiian issues at the Capitol. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Review Board Recommends No Charges Against Police In 4 Deaths. The Law Enforcement Officer Independent Review Board said the officers were justified in their actions. The Hawaii Law Enforcement Officer Independent Review Board urged prosecutors on Oahu and the Big Island not to file charges against police involved in the deaths of four people, including a parolee who was fatally shot. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Honolulu’s spending of COVID-19 relief funds questioned. City officials are still trying to decide how to spend much of $386 million awarded through the American Rescue Plan Act. Complicating the matter is a disagreement between Mayor Rick Blangiardi’s administration and City Council members over who gets to make spending decisions, which, in turn, is giving rise to questions about transparency and public oversight. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. David Ige pushes Board of Water Supply to repair wells to boost water supply. Oahu residents are facing mandatory restrictions on their water use, and developers could have to grapple with a moratorium on new construction as the hot, dry summer months approach — consequences of a reduction in water capacity due to 2021’s Red Hill emergency. Star-Advertiser.

State investigating after North Shore homeowner moves tons of sand in bid to protect property. The state is investigating after a North Shore homeowner used an excavator to move tons of sand in what he says was a bid to protect his and his neighbors’ homes. Homeowner Todd Dunphy acknowledged he took the action amid worsening erosion at Rocky Point Beach. Hawaii News Now.

Violent attack raises concern about crime in Waikiki. Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association President and CEO Mufi Hannemann said he plans to gather Waikiki stakeholders and law enforcement and criminal justice officials for a public safety coalition meeting the first week of May to address the crimes that have been occurring since Waikiki’s economy reopened and visitors have come back. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Honey production down, but beekeeping on Big Island remains popular. Honey production across the U.S. and Hawaii dropped in 2021, however, the beekeeping industry and craft remains popular on the Big Island. West Hawaii Today.

Four busted for planting ‘kanaka garden’ on state land in Hilo. A longtime Hawaiian sovereignty activist and three others were cited Sunday by Department of Land and Natural Resources enforcement officers for their third attempt to plant what they call a “kanaka garden” at Wailoa State Recreation Area in Hilo. Tribune-Herald. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.

Kawauchi seeks legal fees in police case. Former Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi, now a private practice attorney, went public last week with her case against the county as she tried to clear the name of retired police captain Chadwick Fukui, whose charges in a 2017 case were dismissed by a judge. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Maui Voters Set To Vote On 11 Changes To County Government. If approved in the general election this fall, the reforms would restructure county agencies, improve government ethics, promote Hawaiian culture and more. Civil Beat.

Nonprofits awarded $700K to help support farming, food security. Six nonprofits have been awarded grants to help support farmers and food security as well as youth and workforce development, Maui County announced this week. Maui News.

South Maui residents invited to online Growth Alternatives workshop. The workshop aims to gather input on growth alternatives, the type of development, and the desired density for South Maui in the next 20 years. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauai group protest controversial south shore condo development. Some Kauai residents are trying to stop a 25-acre project that includes 279 luxury units on the south shore, saying it’s too close to the Koloa Heritage Trail, also known as the Hapa Trail. Hawaii News Now.

Grants fund rental help, housing. Several anticipated grants will fuel more emergency rental assistance, affordable housing units and other community projects on Kaua‘i. Garden Island.

Legislators tackle climate change. The county’s four state lawmakers will tackle climate legislation and questions from their constituents at this Wednesday’s virtual Kaua‘i Climate Action Forum at 6 p.m. Garden Island.

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