Thursday, August 18, 2022

Honolulu braces for student surge, Veterans Affairs official visits Tripler, Japanese tourists drawn to Big Island, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Joy Roldan
Honolulu traffic PC:Joy Roldan via Facebook
Here are some tips on how to prepare for back-to-school Oʻahu traffic. Prepare yourself. If you are on the road on Oʻahu next week, expect delays as 50,000 more motorists hit the road. The University of Hawaiʻi faculty and students return fully in person for the first time since the start of the pandemic.  Hawaii Public Radio.

When to expect your $300 Hawaii tax rebate? The State of Hawaii Department of Taxation created an Act 115 Refund page on its website for residents and said those that filed their tax returns can expect to see their $300 refund by September or October and it all depends on when they filed their tax return. KHON2.

Large number of voters leave Office of Hawaiian Affairs races blank. From Mauna Kea, to the decades long waiting list for Hawaiian Homestead land, it's a pivotal time in the Native Hawaiian community. KITV4

Hawaiʻi Schools Issue Updated COVID-19 Guidance.
The Hawaiʻi Department of Education on Monday released an updated COVID-19 guidance, incorporating the latest recommendations from the Hawaiʻi Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for K-12 schools. Big Island Video News.

Ige: Changes coming as COVID funding ends. Due to changes in federal funding, the state of Hawaii will alter its approach to testing, treatment and other COVID-19 mitigation strategies. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii Department of Health reports 2,696 new infections, 13 coronavirus-related deaths. The state’s average positivity rate, meanwhile, continued its downward trend to 10.7%, compared to 12.4% reported the previous week, representing tests performed between Aug. 9 to 15. It represents a decline for the third week in a row since July 27. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

The Public May Never Know Who Did The Bribing In The Honolulu Permitting Scandal. In a bribery scandal that nabbed government workers, federal prosecutors have obscured the identities of those on the other end of the transaction. Civil Beat.

Airport theft probe exposes possible wider public corruption scheme. A state investigation into alleged thefts at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport baseyard has lead to suspicions of insider contracting. Hawaii News Now.

Tripler VA center gets visit from Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs Donald Remy. Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs Donald Remy visited the Spark M. Matsunaga Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Wednesday as part of a tour of VA facilities across the Pacific. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Mixed-use towers proposed for Keeaumoku. A new affordable housing development could be coming to the heart of Honolulu at the old Meadow Gold facility, but questions remain about how long it will stay affordable. KHON2.

Honolulu Community College’s aviation maintenance program receives a historic boost from Hawaiian Airlines. For the first time in the roughly 80-year history of the Pacific Basin’s only aviation maintenance training program, an airline company is investing in it directly by diverting some of its paid employees to serve as instructors. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Hawaiʻi Island records more than its usual share of Japanese visitors. Ross Birch, head of the bureau, says the Big Island is currently receiving about 1,000 Japanese visitors a day. That equates to 20% of Japanese visitors arriving in Hawaiʻi. The island usually sees 10% of total statewide arrivals. Hawaii Public Radio.

County to Temporarily Pause Rental, Utility Assistance Program. The county’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program, ERAP, will temporarily pause to new applications starting Thursday in an effort to process existing applications. Big Island Now. KHON2.

New program makes county buses ‘safe places’. Mass Transit Administrator John Andoh announced that Mass Transit is partnering with the National Safe Place Network, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing shelter and resources to children and teens in crisis. Tribune-Herald.

Public Can Give Feedback On Waikōloa Intersection Plan. The Hawaiʻi County Department of Public Works Engineering Division says it will be implementing safety improvements on the Waikōloa Intersection, where Waikoloa Road meets Paniolo Avenue. Big Island Video News.

Hilo Judge Extends TRO Against Deputy Prosecutor. A district court judge in Hilo on Wednesday extended a temporary restraining order against a deputy prosecutor and his wife who are accused of harassing their next-door neighbors. She also ordered mediation. Civil Beat.

Maui

Maui Police Commission reviews complaints against chief and executive staff. The Maui Police Commission met on Wednesday to review complaints against Maui Police Chief John Pelletier and several members of his executive staff, alleging violations of policy and procedure. Maui Now.

Despite long lines to vote on Maui, election officials say no major changes planned for November. Officials say primary election day in Hawaii had a few hiccups, but otherwise went smoothly and they’re not planning to change too many procedures for the general election in November. Hawaii News Now.

Public invited to comment on Maui Climate Mitigation Action Survey. Mayor Michael Victorino is seeking public input for a Maui County Climate Mitigation Action Survey to help develop a Climate Action and Resiliency Plan. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauaʻi residents respond favorably to concept of regenerative travel. Give more and take less could soon become a traveler’s creed. A University of Hawaiʻi paper asked more than 460 Kauaʻi residents about their attitudes on regenerative tourism. Hawaii Public Radio.

Surveyed Kauaʻi residents continue to feel concerned about COVID-19. A majority of surveyed Kauaʻi residents continue to feel concerned about COVID-19 and the pandemic, according to a new report from the state Department of Health and Kauaʻi District Health Office. Hawaii Public Radio.

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