Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Hawaii to get up to $40M for 'climate-smart' ag, Kauai youth facility still vacant 3 years after construction, Honolulu charter amendment could restructure planning commission, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii coalition scores ‘climate-smart’ ag grant. A coalition of Hawaii community groups and government entities has scored a federal grant that will bring to the islands up to $40 million to help farmers, ranchers and foresters implement “climate-smart” agricultural practices. The U.S. Department of Agriculture grant also aims to establish stronger markets for local commodities produced using methods that reduce greenhouse gas emissions or store carbon. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Commission To Vet New Bills To Boost Public Access To Government. Two measures that were vetoed by Gov. David Ige are among the proposals the panel plans to take up this week in its effort to restore public trust. A commission to increase government transparency is set to vote on several measures Wednesday that would reduce the cost of public records, archive government board meetings, subject lawmakers to term limits, require certain legislative groups to abide by open meetings laws and require the state Office of Elections to publish a voters guide. Civil Beat.

HI-EMA assures Hawaii of no threat from North Korean missile launch.
Nearly five years after state emergency officials warned Hawaii about a nonexistent missile attack, causing widespread panic here, they sent out a message on social media Monday about another missile launch, only this time it was to reassure residents there was no threat to the islands. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2

Hawaii to install EV stations along highways.
Eleven electric vehicle fast-charging stations are slated for Hawaii highways, according to the state Department of Transportation. Each station is required to offer four 150-kilowatt ports capable of charging four cars simultaneously within 20 minutes. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Project to control miconia with butterflies could roll out within year.
The insects feed on the invasive plant, which has infested native forests. The state Department of Agriculture and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources had proposed the field release of the butterfly (Euselasia chrysippe) on state lands as a way to mitigate the growth of the noxious weed native to Central and South America. Maui News.

Addressing mental health in public schools poses a challenge for staff and psychologists. Counselors are often the "go-to" source at schools for helping students academically and addressing mental or behavioral issues. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu

Red Hill leader vows community inclusion.
The military task force charged with defueling the Red Hill Fuel Storage Facility plans to begin draining the pipes to massive underground fuel storage tanks in two weeks — a first step in removing 100 million gallons of fuel. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Voters To Decide If Construction Interests Have Too Much Say In Honolulu Planning.
One proposed charter amendment would give voters a chance to weigh in on the makeup of a controversial city commission. The Honolulu Planning Commission, long criticized as an insider-ish clique dominated by construction interests, could get something of a makeover soon, if voters approve a charter amendment that would change the mix of the nine-member board. Civil Beat.

Separate bomb scares disrupt Honolulu airport and Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Authorities are investigating two bomb scare incidents today involving suspicious packages, including one at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport that led to the closing of part of several baggage claim areas and a couple of gates. A male suspect was taken into custody at about 6 p.m. in connection with the Pearl Harbor case and turned over to Honolulu police, officials said. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Harbor cargo capacity expansion slated for 2024 completion. A new ocean cargo container terminal at Honolulu Harbor long deemed a crucial state project supporting economic growth is on track for completion in early 2024 after nearly two decades of work that has included major delays. Star-Advertiser.

Lead Detected Near Military’s Ewa Beach Shooting Range, Surfrider Says. The Marine Corps expressed skepticism about the findings. The state health department said it would investigate. High levels of lead were detected in soil samples taken near the military’s Puuloa Range Training Facility in Ewa Beach earlier this year, some with up to 17 times the state safety standard for an industrial area, the Surfrider Foundation said Monday. Civil Beat. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Panel to mull gun carry bill today. A bill that would restrict the carrying of concealed and unconcealed firearms in “sensitive places” in Hawaii County has garnered quite a bit of opposition ahead of its first committee hearing. West Hawaii Today.

Ironman’s two races in Kona could pump $100 million into economy — but is it worth it? The Ironman World Championship has called Kona home since 1981. For the first time in its Big Island history, there are two races, on Thursday and Saturday, to accommodate a surplus of athletes who deferred their entries during the pandemic when the race was cancelled. Big Island Now.

Maui

Maui group launches Safe Solar Projects effort leading up to Paeahu Solar case. Leading up to a contested case hearing next month, a group of Maui residents is putting a spotlight on concerns over utility-scale solar projects. Safe Solar alleges that Paeahu Solar Project, a solar energy and battery storage plant slated for 150 acres behind Maui Meadows in South Maui, could increase flooding, and spark cultural, archeological and environmental damage, among other issues. Maui Now.

Hāliʻimaile General Store, Gannon’s Pacific View restaurants bought by Wyoming group. The acquisition of Gannon’s at 100 Wailea Golf Club Drive, Wailea, went into effect Saturday, and the sale of Hāliʻimaile General Store at 900 Hāliʻimaile Road, Hāliʻimaile, will finalize next month, according to a news release issued today. Both restaurants will remain open during the transitions. Maui Now.

Kauai

Despite strong need, youth drug treatment center on Kauai sits empty 3 years after it was built. Construction on Kauai’s Adolescent Treatment and Healing Center wrapped up three years ago. But the mostly taxpayer-funded project has yet to help a single child. Hawaii News Now.

Waimea wastewater project wins project award for county. On Friday, Sept. 30, representatives from the county Department of Public Works and its Division of Wastewater Management received the American Society of Civil Engineers Hawai‘i Section 2022 Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement award for Best Small Project, at the Kahala Hotel and Resort on O‘ahu. Garden Island. Kauai Now.

Partners needed to build affordable housing project in ‘Ele‘ele. The Kaua‘i County Housing Agency is seeking a development partner to construct the first 38 single-family homes in the county’s Lima Ola affordable housing subdivision in ‘Ele‘ele. Kauai Now.

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