Friday, June 17, 2022

Seized Russian yacht docks in Honolulu, Ige signs LGBTQ bills, Maui mayor approves record $1.1B budget, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Russian yacht, seized in Fiji by U.S., docks at Honolulu Harbor. A superyacht seized last week in Fiji by U.S. federal agents — as part of an effort by Western governments to confiscate Russian assets and punish oligarchs for their country’s invasion of Ukraine — arrived Thursday morning in Honolulu Harbor. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Gov. David Ige signs LGBTQ rights bills into law. The bills address a range of issues — from insurance coverage for gender affirming treatments to jury participation for the LGBTQ community. One formally establishes the Hawaii LGBTQ+ Commission. Star-Advertiser. Associated Press. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii jobless rate ticks up to 4.2% as labor force grows. The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism reported Thursday that Hawaii’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.2% in May, up from 4.1% in April. Star-Advertiser.

Anticipated Revenue Windfall Raises The Stakes In OHA Elections. Six seats on OHA’s board of trustees, which oversees more than $600 million in trust funds, are up for grabs. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s red-flag law took effect in 2020. Hawaii’s red-flag or “extreme risk” law took effect on Jan. 1, 2020. But since then, there’s only been one request for a gun violence protective order. Advocates say the problem is not many people know what it is ― and how it works. Hawaii News Now.

Public Forum On Hawaiʻi Broadband Access Set. The University of Hawaiʻi is inviting the public to an online forum on June 23 to discuss creating more broadband access opportunities. Big Island Video News.

Despite Hawaiʻi's clean energy strides, oil keeps its grip on the islands. While Hawaiʻi has made strides to transition its electrical grid to renewable energy, the economy still overwhelmingly relies on fossil fuels. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hokule‘a and Hikianalia return from Tahiti. The voyaging canoes Hokule‘a and Hikianalia docked at Sand Island at 6:45 p.m. Thursday upon their return from their 2,500-mile voyage from Tahiti. Star-Advertiser. KITV4.


Honolulu police investigate 2 SHOPO leaders after internal union fight raises extortion allegations. The top two officials of the police officers union have been placed on restrictive duty after Honolulu police opened a misdemeanor extortion case in connection with allegations outlined in a civil suit filed by an ousted union official who says he was falsely accused of double-dipping travel funds and blackmailed with the threat of a theft complaint. Star-Advertiser.

Son of new Honolulu police chief charged in bicycle thefts. The 36-year-old son of newly sworn-in Honolulu Police Chief Arthur “Joe” Logan has been charged with second-degree burglary related to the alleged theft of two bicycles in 2021. Star-Advertiser. KHON2.

Mixed reactions over hotel proposed for Honolulu's Chinatown. If approved, the 4-star, 240-room hotel outfitted with a rooftop restaurant and pool -- would be located in Chinatown. Ikenakea Development touts its $127 million project as a vision for revitalizing a deteriorating district, and an opportunity to provide 100 full-time local jobs. KITV4.

University of Hawaii is awarded $25 million to create hybrid reef. The University of Hawaii will be awarded up to $25 million by the Department of Defense to design and build a hybrid coral reef that aims to protect the coastline from the growing impacts of flooding, erosion and storms. The part-man-made, part-natural reef structure will be installed at a yet-to-be-determined site on the coast of Oahu in a project funded by the DOD’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Star-Advertiser.

Broken waterline at Dillingham Airfield is leaking millions of gallons ― every single month.
As the state grapples with an ongoing water crisis, a broken waterline at Dillingham Airfield is leaking millions of gallons every month. State leaders say problems with the system date back nearly two decades. Hawaii News Now.

Closure of Wahiawa nursing facility leaves worrisome long-term care gap. The looming shutdown of the only skilled nursing facility in Wahiawa has advocates raising more alarms about Hawaii’s long-term care crisis. Hawaii News Now.

58th Annual Hawaii State Farm Fair coming to Kaneohe in July. The 58th Hawaii State Farm Fair will be held Saturday and Sunday, July 9-10, at the Kualoa Ranch in Kaneohe. The Fair is sponsored by the Hawaii Farm Bureau, in partnership with the Hawaii State Department of Agriculture and Hawaii State 4-H Livestock Council. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

CDC categorizes Hawaii County as a high-level community for COVID-19 risks. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today moved Hawaii County from a yellow, medium-level community to an orange, high-level community for COVID-19 impacts. Hawaii County now joins Kauai, Honolulu, and Maui counties, which are also categorized as orange, high-risk COVID communities. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Hawaii News Now.

Increased homeowner exemption clears committee. A bigger break in taxes for homeowners and kupuna is all but assured next year, following a unanimous committee vote Tuesday on a bill and assurances from the administration that it supports the measure. West Hawaii Today.

Portuguese center one step closer to fruition.
Today marks an important milestone for the organizers of the Hawaii Island Portuguese Chamber of Commerce Cultural and Educational Center — they will be inking signatures on a construction contract for the long-envisioned facility at the corner of Komohana and Ponahawai streets in Hilo. Tribune-Herald.


Mayor signs record high $1.07 billion budget, saying it will rebuild Maui County
. Saying that the county will go from surviving — to rebuilding and revitalizing — Mayor Michael Victorino today signed into law the record-high $1.07 billion budget for the new fiscal year.  Maui Now.

Proposal paves way for more public parking at coveted South Maui beach.
After years of sparring over beach parking at popular Keawakapu in South Maui, a new bill is paving the way for additional public parking on nearby state land. Maui Now.

South Maui Residents Want A Community Plan With Sharper Teeth. An update to South Maui’s community plan has been a long time coming. Residents charting the region’s future complain that past plans have been too flimsy. Civil Beat.

Newly renovated community center, DMVL in Pukalani opens with blessing. Work on the Hannibal Tavares Community Center included replacement of deteriorated wood, structural repairs, asphalt shingle roofing and gutter replacement, and repainting of the center’s interior and exterior. Maui Now.


Judicial Nominee Faces Accusations Of Witness Tampering. But defense lawyers say attorney Gregory Meyers followed standard procedure when he delivered a witness statement to Kauai County prosecutors and described the complaint as “frivolous.” Civil Beat.

Panel to talk about Coco Palms. The discussion will include the location’s ancient context, Coco Palms’ history, and current plans for the property. Garden Island.

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