Monday, January 9, 2023

Hefty subsidies for public hospitals, man urinating at Kilauea eruption draws Native Hawaiian ire, affordable housing battles continue, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hefty subsidies continue for Hawaii’s state-run hospitals. Top officials with the state agency that oversees many of Hawaii’s neighbor island hospitals and long-term care facilities say there’s no current push to privatize more of its facilities even though the private sector could operate them more cheaply and efficiently, easing the hefty subsidies provided by state taxpayers. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Is Struggling To Meet A Deadline To Reduce Leased Office Space. Despite a new law mandating a 10% reduction by 2026, the amount of office space leased by the state has increased. Civil Beat.

Friends remember Danny Kaleikini, 85. Danny Kaleikini, the legendary entertainer who embodied the best of Hawaii, was being remembered throughout the islands for his immense talent as a singer, musician, actor and recording artist, and for his boundless devotion to spreading aloha worldwide. Star-Advertiser. Maui News. Hawaii News Now.


Honolulu’s affordable housing disappearing prematurely. A state agency is looking to plug a leak in part of Honolulu’s affordable- housing market where subsidized condominiums have been converted to market-price sales or rentals despite a regulatory tool designed to defer such conversions. Star-Advertiser.

Manoa community split over plan for senior affordable rentals. Vocal opponents of a proposed 288-unit affordable rental project for seniors to be built on the edge of the nearly 190-year-old Manoa Chinese Cemetery in upper Manoa Valley have surfaced at recent community meetings and even launched an online petition that has collected more than 4,200 signatures to thwart the development within the affluent neighborhood in urban Honolulu. Star-Advertiser.

Health Department: ‘Forever chemicals’ detected in Leeward Oahu water system. Low levels of PFAS “forever chemicals” have been detected in a Leeward Oahu water system that serves about 217,000 individuals, the state Department of Health announced. Hawaii News Now.

City: Oahu’s digital parking meters will be free for at least 6 months. About 2,200 digital parking meters on Oahu will be free of charge for at least the next six months. The city says that’s how long it’ll take to replace its wireless credit card readers to match a technology upgrade by Verizon. Hawaii News Now.

Fugitive owner of embattled semi-sub company arrested after attempting to flee by boat.  Federal authorities on Friday arrested the fugitive owner of an embattled Hawaii shipbuilding company who tried to flee Hawaii on his boat ahead of his hearing. Curtiss E. Jackson, 71, was wanted by U.S. Marshals on a federal arrest warrant for violating his terms of pretrial release. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Why Community Efforts Aren’t Enough To Save Oahu’s Aging Cemeteries. Only a fraction of cemeteries on the island are licensed by the state and not all have a perpetual care fund to cover maintenance costs after the cemetery fills up. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Social media post of man urinating at Kilauea eruption viewing site stirs harsh backlash. A photo of a man urinating at a Kilauea eruption viewing site that was posted on social media is igniting anger — with some saying it underscores the need for cultural education.  Hawaii News Now.

TMT environmental review delayed by voluminous comments. The National Science Foundation is already behind in its effort to evaluate whether the stalled Thirty Meter Telescope project should be reinvigorated with $850,000 or more in public funds. Star-Advertiser.

Hilo Medical Center awaits $50M expansion OK.  Gov. Josh Green in December announced Opens in a new tab an allocation of $50 million in the executive budget for the expansion of Hilo Medical Center. Now it’s up to the state Legislature to approve that allocation. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald.

Man who leapt to death off bridge political candidate, co-writer of famous song.  David "Kawika" Crowley, the 71-year-old Hilo man who jumped to his death Wednesday from the Puueo Bridge in downtown Hilo was a colorful character who pulled off an upset win in the GOP primary election for Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District in 2012 — while homeless — and co-wrote one of Hawaii’s most beloved songs. Tribune-Herald.

Institute seeks to erect satellite array in Ka‘u.  The Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics will present at next month’s Windward Planning Commission meeting a request for a special permit to install 10 satellite dishes 20 feet in diameter, as well as additional infrastructure including a catchment tank, portable toilet and 10-kilowatt solar array across about two acres near Wood Valley. Tribune-Herald.


Developer to present update on Pulelehua housing project. A special presentation updating the progress of the 310-acre Pulelehua housing development is among the topics being presented at the annual West Maui Taxpayers Association members meeting. Maui Now.

DOE eyes tentative mid-January opening for Kulanihako‘i High. State still has not fulfilled permit, plans to meet with Mayor’s Office next week. Maui News.

A Dwindling Kalaupapa Population Honors 1st Exiles With Tributes And Tears. Despite the painful history, many former Hansen’s disease patients have chosen to remain even after the government freed them from quarantine. Civil Beat.


New Year, new laws: How ranked-choice voting could be used on Kaua‘i. Last week, state Rep. Jimmy Tokioka (a Democrat who represents portions of the Eastside) resigned his state house position to join Gov. Josh Green’s administration. Garden Island.

Mahelona master plan meeting is Wednesday. State Rep. Nadine K. Nakamura invites the community to attend a talk-story session regarding Samuel Mahelona Memorial Hospital, where officials will deliver an update on the hospital’s draft conceptual master plan. Garden Island.

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