Monday, July 31, 2023

Big plans to save Waikiki from ocean waves, Ethics Commission: OHA trustee's daughter can't work for him anymore, Honolulu rethinking condo sprinkler law, yacht owners fined $117k for Maui grounding, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Local Orchid Farmers Grateful to Those Buying Local. Hilo's Orchid Show has been a local fixture since before World War II. The Hilo Orchid Society says there's been breaks for wartime, also COVID, and lots has changed in the last century. KITV4.

OHA trustee denied exemption from anti-nepotism law. 
The first request for an exemption from the state’s new anti-nepotism law — submitted by Office of Hawaiian Affairs Trustee Brickwood Galuteria, who supervises his daughter — has been denied by the Hawaii Ethics Commission. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii public schools’ safety vulnerabilities outlined by DOE.  Vulnerability assessments at Hawaii’s public schools have progressed at a slow pace, with only 140 of the state’s 258 regular public school campuses formally evaluated since 2017 for problems that could make them more vulnerable to a potential active shooter. Star-Advertiser.

Access to Hawaii public school campus assessments impeded. Periodic requests over the past year by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser to accompany Hawaii public school officials on “campus vulnerability assessments” have all been denied, and requests to view documents from the campus assessments already conducted remain at an impasse. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii housing emergency order to ‘unstick’ local government projects.  One reason Gov. Josh Green enacted an emergency proclamation to speed up residential development in Hawaii was the historically slow pace of state and county affordable-­housing projects. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i Tourism Authority names new board chair, vice chair.  The Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority Board of Directors selected airline industry veteran Blaine Miyasato as its new chair and educator and social entrepreneur Mahina Paishon Duarte as its new vice chair.  Maui Now.

Hawaii Tourism Authority to focus on destination stewardship. The Hawaii Tourism Authority board, which has increasingly come under pressure from the community and state lawmakers to manage tourism, voted Thursday to support a reorganization that creates a Destination Stewardship Branch, elevates the agency’s finance and planning departments, and expands personnel. Star-Advertiser.

Hundreds gather to mark the 180th anniversary of Sovereignty Restoration Day.  Hundreds gathered at Thomas Square on Sunday to celebrate La Hoihoi Ea — Hawaiian Sovereignty Restoration Day — with the official holiday taking place on Monday.  The holiday marks King Kamehameha III finally regaining control of the Hawaiian Kingdom after the British illegally took control of the islands for five months. Hawaii News Now.  KHON2.


Major plans for Waikiki aim to save it from waves, flooding.  The Waikiki shoreline stretches from Duke Kaha­namoku Beach to Kaimana Beach, a stretch of about two miles, or 10,260 feet of coastline.  Star-Advertiser.

Council chair pressured to rescind costly condo fire sprinkler law.  Condominium associations are lobbying Honolulu City Council Chair Tommy Waters to repeal a law that requires high-rise condos to install costly fire sprinkler systems, prompting Waters to seek input from the Waikiki Neighborhood Board. Star-Advertiser.

Advocates see gains in efforts to reclaim Makua Valley from Army.  The valley is one of the most controversial of the military’s training grounds in the islands, and holds particular significance for Hawaiian cultural practitioners. In Hawaiian, “makua” means “parent,” and the valley is considered the place where human life was first created, according to oral tradition. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Changed Bus Routes To Accommodate The Rail. But Many Passengers Say No Thanks. City transportation officials say the goal is "one integrated system." But the changes have made commutes more difficult in some cases. Civil Beat.

A month into operation, here’s how many people are riding Honolulu’s rail line daily.  After one month of operation for Oahu’s Skyline, daily ridership numbers have fallen substantially since its opening weekend. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Zoo ticket prices increase to meet growing costs.  For the first time in over a decade, the Honolulu Zoo has increased its admission fees.  Tickets for general admission adults are now $21, while general admission for children age 3 to 12 is $13.  Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Why Some Hawaiian Homesteaders Pay 6 Times More Than County Users For Water. DHHL hopes to use some of the $600 million appropriated for homelands last year to improve infrastructure, including water access. Civil Beat.

County receives new copter courtesy of the Daniel R. Sayre Memorial Foundation. Thanks to a donation from the Daniel R. Sayre Memorial Foundation, through generous benefactors, Hawaii County will become a safer place with a new fire department helicopter. West Hawaii Today.

Keawe Street business owners lament loss of sales during daytime road work.  Construction on Keawe Street in downtown Hilo will be ongoing until April 2024. Hawaii County crews are upgrading the gas, sewer and water infrastructure along Keawe, and the work is requiring the closure of parking spaces and traffic lanes from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on weekdays. Tribune-Herald.


Trust fined $117K in Maui yacht grounding, owner could face further penalty. The state Board of Land and Natural Resources has voted to accept a $117,000 fine against the trust that was involved in the yacht grounding incident on Maui, but said that it wants to continue deliberating on a penalty against the operator of the yacht and his luxury yacht charter service. Star-Advertiser. Maui News.  Maui Now.

Lanai Ferry Seeks Higher Ticket Fare For The First Time In 15 Years. The public can weigh in next month on whether state regulators should approve the proposed 37% increase. Civil Beat.

Betty’s Beach Cafe in Lahaina closes due to roach infestation.  Several other critical violations were observed, so a yellow “conditional pass” placard was posted.  Maui News.


Waimea Public Library reopens after 18-month renovation project.  Waimea Public Library is open on Mondays and Wednesdays from noon to 4 p.m., then again from 5 to 7 p.m.; Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon, and then from 1 to 4 p.m., and Friday hours are from noon to 4 p.m. The library is closed on Saturdays and Sundays. Garden Island.

First installment of real property taxes due Aug. 21.  Payments can be made online at, by mail, in person or at the drop box located outside the Kapulē Building at the Līhu‘e Civic Center.  Kauai Now.

Friday, July 28, 2023

Judge to consider guns on beaches, insurance company to leave Hawaii, light sentence for Honolulu architect who helped FBI expose corrupt building inspectors, Ellison's Lanai explored, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Judge to consider whether Hawaii can ban firearms on its beaches.  The state’s latest gun control measure landed in court because of a lawsuit by three Maui residents who want to carry guns on beaches and other places deemed sensitive by the law, which took effect this month and involves a misdemeanor offense. Star-Advertiser. KITV4.

Feds To Boost State Efforts To Take On Affordable Housing Shortfall. State officials say the State plans to take advantage of a new $85 million funding opportunity under HUD that will help communities "address restrictive zoning, land use, and regulatory policies." Big Island Video News. Tribune-Herald.

Quiet on set: Hollywood strikes leave Hawaii crew members behind. The Hollywood strike that has united writers and actors for the first time in 60 years also has left hundreds of crew members in Hawaii without paychecks as work on Hawaii-based television shows and movies has been suspended. Star-Advertiser.

Universal Homeowners Insurance Company Is Pulling Out Of Hawaii. Roughly 1,500 polices will be affected by Universal Property & Casualty’s departure from the homeowners, condominium and renters insurance market in Hawaii, according to a state news release Thursday. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald.

Thousands enrolled in HECO pilot that institutes different rates for peak, non-peak hours.
The “Shift and Save Rate” pilot program will enroll about 15000 residential homes and 1,700 business customers on Oʻahu, Maui and Hawaiʻi Island who were selected at random. KHON2. Hawaii News Now.

New classrooms opening this fall seen as big step toward achieving universal preschool. The state plans to open 11 new free public preschool classrooms this fall as part of the Ready Keiki initiative. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii-Japan summit rebuilds relationships, forges new ones. Gov. Josh Green and Hawaii’s four county mayors attended the event, where they welcomed governors and mayors of six prefectures and 16 cities and towns from Japan with state and city sister relationships. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Visitor arrivals in June continue recovery. S
ome 889,274 visitors came to Hawaii in June, according to preliminary statistics released Thursday by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.  Star-Advertiser.


Architect who helped FBI build case against corrupt building inspectors gets leniency in federal court. An architect who gave tens of thousands of dollars in bribes to workers at the Honolulu Department of Planning and Permitting was sentenced on Thursday to one year and a day in prison and a $5,000 fine. In the face of painful permitting delays, Bill Wong said he gave in to the pressure to "pay to play." Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

City awarded $25M toward Ala Wai pedestrian bridge. The Honolulu Department of Transportation Services has been awarded $25 million in federal funding toward construction of the planned Ala Wai pedestrian bridge, the city announced Thursday. The June arrivals were a 5.5% increase from the June 2022 total. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.  KHON2.

 Red Hill’s Fuel Director Raised An Alarm Before Pipes Leaked. The Navy Removed Her. Lt. Cmdr. Shannon Bencs reported problems with Red Hill’s infrastructure and leadership culture just months before fuel leaks contaminated the drinking water. Civil Beat.

City cites lack of funding for delay in building Makakilo bypass.  Those in favor of the city constructing the Makakilo Bypass Road claim it’s a matter of safety. But the city said the reason it isn’t happening boils down to funding. KHON2.

Half A Million Dollars Buys 6 Months Of Security Guards For Waikiki. While crime on the tourist strip is trending down the city says more resources are still needed. Civil Beat.

Kaneohe care homes must pay $287K for overtime violations.  The owners and operators of two residential care homes in Kaneohe must pay $287,279 in overtime wages and damages to 23 caregivers after a federal court ruling, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Big Island’s New Climate Change Office Will ‘Create A Unified Front’. The office will work toward reducing emissions, promoting renewable energy and efficiency, and fortifying infrastructure against climate change impacts. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald.  Big Island Video News.  Big Island Now.

Why were oral arguments challenging permit of Thirty Meter Telescope deferred? Nobody will say.  The Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources, which announced the postponement on July 21, provided no reason why the arguments would not be heard at the July 28 regular Land Board meeting. It also would not say how long the arguments will be stalled. Big Island Now.


Maui's 900-acre Olowalu Reef to receive slice of large federal funding.  Over $180,000 will go toward restoring the over 900-acre Olowalu Reef, which has been identified as one of the most essential reefs around Maui. Hawaii Public Radio.

Housing to benefit from proposed wastewater project. A proposed wastewater facility in Central Maui is set to benefit a number of current and future housing projects, including the Waikapu Country Town development of more than 1,500 units and the master-planned Kehalani community. Maui News.

A look inside life on an island owned by Larry Ellison, the fourth richest person in the world. Imagine trying to make ends meet while living on an island owned by one of the richest people in the world. That’s the reality for some residents on Lānaʻi, who say the power dynamics of land control can get… complicated.  Hawaii Public Radio.

Maui Brewing Company in Lahaina reopens after health inspection. The state Department of Health’s Food Safety Branch has allowed Maui Brewing Company to reopen in Lahaina after shuting it down due to a cockroach and rodent infestation. Star-Advertiser.


Kaua‘i Liquor Department offers free Narcan kits to licensees.  The Kaua‘i Department of Liquor Control is offering free Naloxone, also known as Narcan, to all of its liquor licensees. Kauai Now.

Play Streets coming to Laukona Park. The Play Streets Kaua‘i planning team announced the arrival of and accessibility to the popular Play Streets free program at Laukona Park in Hanama‘ulu on Aug. 12 from 3 to 6 p.m. Garden Island.

Thursday, July 27, 2023

ACLU sues over Honolulu homeless sweeps, Gov. Green bails out Lt. Gov. Luke's budget overruns, feds probe for money laundering in state real estate transactions, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Lawsuit claims Honolulu’s homeless policies are unconstitutional.  Honolulu’s homeless sweeps and other “anti-houseless” laws should be ruled illegal and unconstitutional because they violate Hawaii’s state constitutional prohibitions against cruel and unusual punishment, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Oahu Circuit Court by the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.  KITV4.

Hawaii LG Sylvia Luke Needed Bailout From Governor, Documents Show. Just before the close of the fiscal year, Gov. Josh Green stepped in with a $49,000 solution to a budget problem that threatened to expose Lt. Gov. Sylvia Luke to possible liability and removal from office. Civil Beat.

Feds Closely Watching Local Property Deals For Signs Of Money Laundering. Real estate purchases by anonymous shell companies can distort appraisals and tax assessments. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, a branch of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, has begun requiring title companies on Oahu, Maui, Big Island and Kauai to report the identities of the true owners for all-cash purchases of residential real estate exceeding $300,000.  Civil Beat.

Businesses, residents demand more clarity on how new ocean recreation fee will be used. The state is preparing to collect a new $1 fee from every customer of commercial vessels, watercraft and water sports equipment operators. Hawaii News Now.

Law Enforcement Standards Board Inches Toward Hiring Key Staff. The board charged with overseeing police statewide still can’t develop standards, leaving Hawaii the only state unable to certify its law enforcement officers. Civil Beat.

Angelo named as Hawaii’s Consumer Advocate.  The state has named Michael S. Angelo executive director of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs’ Division of Consumer Advocacy. Angelo assumed the position on July 17. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Defense Contractors Likely To Get Probation For Campaign Violations. Clifford Chen and Lawrence Lum Kee, formerly of Navatek LLC, were indicted along with their boss, Martin Kao, after making illegal donations to a senator's reelection efforts. Civil Beat.


EPA hosting public meeting to create new community group for Red Hill defueling.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is hosting a community meeting Thursday night in Salt Lake, joined by Navy officials, to share more information about the formation of the “Community Representation Initiative.” Hawaii News Now.

HPD’s newly converted fleet of pickups taken off patrols after safety concerns surface.  In June, Honolulu police converted 10 Chevy Colorados into the department’s newest patrol vehicles. The trucks were purchased during the pandemic using COVID relief funds. Hawaii News Now.

Planners OK more mixed-use development in Halawa.  The Honolulu Planning Commission voted Wednesday to recommend rezoning 227 acres around Skyline’s Halawa station to allow for more development of mixed-use business, residential and affordable housing sites near the state’s planned New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District. Star-Advertiser.

Former site of Stadium Bowl-o-Drome will be new home for DHHL’s first rental project. The 23-story building in Moiliili will include 278 affordable apartments exclusively for beneficiaries of the Hawaiian Home Lands program. Hawaii News Now.

Developer renews plan for homes below Koko Crater.  A developer has revived plans to extend a subdivision of million-dollar homes in Hawaii Kai onto land zoned for preservation after making similar efforts twice before in recent decades. Star-Advertiser.

Nearly 300 tsunami hazard road signs installed across Oahu. The city says this is part of phase 2 of its project to alert people where the danger zone begins and ends. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Council votes to change process for ag land tax assessments.  An effort to offer Big Island commercial farmers a better break on their taxes took a new form Wednesday. Tribune-Herald.

UH reaches agreement with hackers in Hawaii Community College ransomware attack.  The University of Hawaii has reached an agreement with those responsible for a ransomware attack on the Hawaii Community College network. Tribune-Herald. Hawaii News Now.

Board hearing over TMT construction is postponed.  Land Board Chair Dawn Chang has formally declared she can be fair and unbiased in the matter despite having previously worked for the University of Hawaii and the Department of Land and Natural Resources in matters related to the Mauna Kea summit and its astronomy uses. Star-Advertiser.


Roadway along rural Alelele Point reopens 3 months after rockfall.  Maui County’s roadway along rural Alelele Point in East Maui reopened Tuesday, nearly three months after a rockfall forced emergency work to remove rock debris and stabilize the cliffside.  Maui News.

Outrigger finalizes acquisition of Kāʻanapali Beach Hotel; welcomes Maui Brewing Co. restaurant this summer. Outrigger Resorts & Hotels finalized its acquisition of the iconic Kāʻanapali Beach Hotel on Wednesday. The 11-acre, 432-room property is now rebranded as Outrigger Kā‘anapali Beach Resort.  Maui Now.

School bus routes modified to handle driver shortage. Some Maui public school students will head to campus on modified or consolidated routes, similar to last school year, as the island deals with a shortage of 29 bus drivers, the state Department of Education said.  Maui News.


Kaua‘i Bus to offer free passes to high school students this upcoming school year.  With ongoing staffing shortages for school bus drivers, the state will partner with counties for the second year in a row to provide transportation for students attending Hawai‘i public schools. Kauai Now.

Kauaʻi Community College begins chancellor search.  Margaret Sanchez was appointed interim chancellor on Jan. 3, 2023 after the previous chancellor, Joseph Daisy, retired in December 2022. Kauai Now.

Tour companies host free sightseeing event at Kikialoa Small Boat Harbor.  Tour companies at Kikialoa Small Boat Harbor gave free Napali Coast sightseeing tours to more than 200 Kaua‘i residents on Wednesday, July 26, launching what organizers say will be an annual event for locals. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Green's housing plan scrutinized, school bus driver shortage impacts 4 islands, Hilo vet home fined again for infractions, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. Green’s emergency order is under scrutiny.  The sweeping set of new rules largely waives or modifies parts of several state and county regulatory procedures in an effort to produce more housing at lower prices without significant negative impact. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii school bus driver shortage interrupts service. A worsening shortage of school bus drivers is leading to the partial or complete suspension of bus services at 14 public schools on Oahu and Kauai for the new school year, adding to transportation woes already long plaguing public schools on Hawaii island and Maui. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.  Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now.  KHON2.

Native Hawaiian Contractors Take A Back Seat To Alaskans And Tribes For Lucrative Jobs. Hawaii's congressional delegation is hoping to make it easier for Native Hawaiian-owned businesses to compete with other Indigenous contractors. Civil Beat.

EVs will be first to join pilot program for road usage charges.
A pilot program to charge motorists based on their mileage is about to kick off. Electric vehicle owners will be part of the first test run. Ed Sniffen, director of the state Department of Transportation, said the program is part of an effort to move away from a gas tax in order to fund highways. Hawaii Public Radio. KHON2.

Did Misconduct Allegations Spur State’s $2M Settlement In Case Already Won? A federal court judge announced in May she would probe allegations of misconduct by state lawyers in a lawsuit over sex assaults of inmates by staff at the Hawaii women’s prison. Weeks later, the state Attorney General’s Office announced it had agreed to pay $2 million to settle the case. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaiian Airlines posts $12.3M loss. 
Hawaiian Holdings Inc., parent company of Hawaiian Airlines, on Tuesday reported a $12.33 million loss in the second quarter but still surpassed Wall Street expectations, as strengthening from Japan added to robust leisure travel demand. Star-Advertiser.


Council considers demolition of ‘monster homes’ as possible penalty.  A bill meant to prohibit giving false statements to city planners as a means of cracking down on “monster homes” might see more penalties given to violators beyond potential monetary fines and imprisonment. Star-Advertiser.

City Council eyes big tax break for homeowners who have a landfill for a neighbor. While the Honolulu City Council is looking for ways to soften the bite of a property tax spike for homeowners, it’s also considering a tax break for another reason: To make amends for those who have to live with a landfill as their neighbor. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu mayor signs bill requiring bars, nightclubs to carry life-saving overdose treatment. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi signed Bill 28 Tuesday, which will require the overdose antidote, Narcan, to be available in Oahu bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. Hawaii News Now. KITV4

4 major crashes a year required to change traffic signal: City. Kailua residents have been asking for a left turn arrow at an intersection they claim is notoriously dangerous for years. But the city said the intersection does not warrant the change. KHON2.

Kapolei wholesaler must pay $73K for overtime pay violations. The U.S. Department of Labor has ordered a Hawaii food wholesaler to pay $73,000 in back wages and penalties for denying overtime pay to 11 warehouse employees. Star-Advertiser. KITV4.

Abandoned boat from California drifts onto Oahu beach.  A boat that washed ashore in Punaluu last week has been identified as belonging to a California mariner who ran into trouble while sailing from San Diego to Guadalupe, Mexico, seven months ago. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Hilo veterans home fined again for failing to meet standards.
Staffing shortages and health and safety problems have continued to plague the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo, two years after the state took over the nursing facility and fined the company that was managing it over $510,000 for numerous violations following a COVID-19 outbreak that infected more than 80% of residents, killing 27. Star-Advertiser.

County finance committee tackles housing crisis. Hawaii County Council Finance Committee on Tuesday advanced to full council the acceptance of $10 million in federal funds for the vertical construction of Kukuiola emergency shelter in Kailua-Kona. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaiʻi County Council calls on U.S. Postmaster to improve Puna postal service. The Hawai‘i County Council on Tuesday passed a resolution urging the United States Postal Service to expand or rebuild the Pāhoa Post Office in Puna on the Big Island. Big Island Now.

Report: Single WWII relic recovered from area in Waimea.  A single piece of military hardware has been recovered from an 11,000-acre area in Waimea over the last 17 years, according to a report from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Tribune-Herald.


Maui County Threatens Crackdown On Controversial Monster House In Napili. Permitted as a single-family residence, Greg Brown's home has been advertised as a vacation rental for up to $20,000 per night. Civil Beat.

Senate Ways and Means Committee to tour Maui and Molokaʻi facilities. The Senate Ways and Means Committee will visit Maui on Wednesday into Thursday, July 26-27, and Molokaʻi on Thursday and Friday, July 27-28, 2023. Maui Now.

Hotel data reflect slower summer start than last year. Room revenue, hotel occupancy in Maui County lag behind last summer. Maui News.


Parents call for ouster of Waimea Canyon Middle School principal. Representatives from the state Department of Education heard parents and teachers call for the immediate removal of Waimea Canyon Middle School Principal Melissa Speetjens at a meeting at Hanapepe Neighborhood Center on Monday evening, where Speetjens was accused of multiple forms of negligence and creating a toxic school environment for students and staff. Garden Island.

School bus driver shortage to impact four schools, 250 students on Kauaʻi.  The continuing shortage of qualified school bus drivers in Hawaiʻi will completely or partially suspend bus transportation services at four schools on Kauaʻi and 10 of Oʻahu’s 24 high schools when the new school year begins for students on Aug. 7.  Kauai Now.

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Queen Liliʻuokalani’s royal standard returned, Hannemann front-runner for tourism board, millions in pork sent home by legislative leaders, more news from all he Hawaiian Islands

Queen Liliʻuokalani’s illegally seized Royal Standard back at her Honolulu home after 130 years. The Royal Standard of Queen Lili’uokalani, Hawai‘i’s last reigning monarch, was returned July 24, 2023 to her Washington Place home and placed on public view for the first time in 130 years, since it was illegally seized in 1893. Big Island Now. Star-Advertiser.  Civil Beat. Big Island Video News.  KHON2.

Hannemann is front-runner for HTA board seat. The composition of the beleaguered Hawaii Tourism Authority board is set to change again, and former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann is considered the front-runner to secure Gov. Josh Green’s latest appointment. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Senate President Showers Kauai With Pork Projects In New State Budget. An analysis of the Hawaii Legislature's capital improvement projects shows that the districts of top leaders and neighbor island lawmakers got lots of money.  Civil Beat.

New BOE Chair Haruki urges priority on keeping more graduates home. In his first meeting as the new chair of the state Board of Education, Warren Haruki said Monday that he believes the board is poised to bring about significant progress at the islands’ public schools, and urged strong leadership and changes so that more graduates can stay in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiʻi sees first school meal reimbursement rate increase in 40 years.  Hawaiʻi’s reimbursement rate for school meals and other federal child nutrition programs has been increased to 30% above the continental US rates, which is projected to bring an additional $8 million a year to Hawaiʻi to support healthy meals for children. Maui Now.

Miske associate pleads guilty, cooperates with government.
An alleged co-conspirator of reputed Hawaii crime boss Michael Miske pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit kidnapping Monday after he allegedly set up the kidnapping and assault of an accountant who owed his friend’s father $900,000. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.


Rezoning near Halawa rail station on Oahu to be reviewed. The Honolulu Planning Commission is being asked to rezone 227 acres around Skyline’s Halawa station to allow for mixed-use development and affordable housing sites near what will become the state’s New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District. Star-Advertiser.

Search for answers continues in deaths of 2 divers on Oahu. Two free divers were spearfishing at a popular diving spot on Oahu’s North Shore for the first time with a group of work friends early Sunday morning when they went missing for hours and were later found unresponsive. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

 Waikiki church resumes free meal distribution despite mayor’s opposition.   Saint Augustine By The Sea said Mayor Rick Blangiardi asked the church to stop the food line at the side gate on Ohua Avenue after some had complained the free food attracts problems.  Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Star-Advertiser Is Cutting More News Staff. At least four editorial staff members have accepted a buyout. Four editorial employees, Vicki Viotti, Dave Segal, Jason Kaneshiro and Sophie Cocke, have accepted a voluntary buyout offer and have either left the paper or will be leaving at the end of the month. Civil Beat.

Old Waialua Sugar Mill smoke stack being torn down.
Work began on Monday to take down the old Waialua Sugar Mill smoke stack -- the one that towers over the former plantation town and has served as a landmark, even after the mill closed in 1996.  KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Pohoiki Boat Ramp restoration takes step forward. A final environmental assessment for a plan to dredge the sandbar which formed in front of the boat ramp during the 2018 Kilauea eruption was released Sunday. Tribune-Herald.

Army Corps of Engineers to host public meeting about proposed plan for former Waikōloa Maneuver Area’s Section 15.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – responsible for managing restoration efforts at the former Waikōloa Maneuver Area in South Kohala on the Island of Hawai‘i – will host a public meeting on Aug. 12 about the Final Proposed Plan for the Sector 15 Munitions Response Site. Big Island Now.

Keaau library project advances.  According to a final environmental assessment published Sunday, the project is not anticipated to have any significant impact on the local environment, nor has the scope of the project changed substantially since a draft EA was published in May. Tribune-Herald.


Sunshine Law Complaint Leads To Revote On Changes To Maui Shoreline Rules.
Concerns were raised that planning department staff would be given even more discretion over reducing or waiving fines. The Maui Planning Commission will vote again Tuesday on rules that govern development and construction projects along Maui’s coastlines after the county failed to include some written testimony on the matter prior to decision making. Civil Beat.

Comment period begins on development of a new Central Maui Wastewater Reclamation Facility.
  An Environmental Impact Statement Preparation Notice has been filed for the proposed development of a new Central Maui Wastewater Reclamation Facility and onsite Soil Aquifer Treatment basin in Waikapū. Maui Now.

Maui News staffers win 9 Excellence in Journalism awards.  The Maui News staff members earned nine honors at the Hawaii Society of Professional Journalists Excellence in Journalism awards last week.  Maui News.


Worker shortage leads to suspension of Kapaa school bus services. The Hawaii Department of Education has sent out letters to Kapaa Elementary and High School parents notifying them that school bus service will be suspended until further notice. KHON2.

Study indicates human sewage across Kaua‘i’s waters.  A newly published report detected sucralose — an artificial sweetener commonly found in manufactured foods — throughout Kaua‘i’s streams and rivers, indicating nearly islandwide water contamination by human sewage. Garden Island.

Monday, July 24, 2023

Settlement inked for Hawaiians on homeland wait-list, health care system earns top rating, nepotism law delayed, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Landmark settlement approved for Native Hawaiians who spent decades on DHHL waitlist. Plaintiffs in a nearly 24-year-old class-action lawsuit against the state over Hawaiian homestead claims should begin to receive their share of a $328 million settlement in September, after a final approval in court Friday. Star-Advertiser. Kauai Now.  Hawaii News Now.

Public comment sought on Hawaiian Home Lands block grant spending.  DHHL has issued a new report on how much it spent on Native Hawaiian housing under the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii State Agencies Work To Implement New Nepotism Law. The new law against hiring, supervising or contracting with relatives doesn't apply to the Legislature or the court system. The Hawaii State Ethics Commission is delaying enforcing the state’s new nepotism law to give state employees more time to comply with the new guidelines. Civil Beat.

Lawmakers Set Up The State Prison Commission. Now They Don’t Want To Pay For It. The Correctional System Oversight Commission has provided the public with an unprecedented window into the operations of Hawaii's troubled prisons and jails. Civil Beat.

People are leaving Hawaii in droves. Can these solutions help more stay? Hawaii has now entered seven straight years of population decline, and as housing and other living expenses continue to rise, more people may have to make the tough decision to leave. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s health care system receives top scores. Hawaii once again ranked among the best states overall when it comes to its health care system, just behind Massachusetts, in an extensive analysis of 58 metrics that assess access to care, health outcomes, quality, costs, reproductive care and women’s health. Star-Advertiser.

Public Hearings Set For Hawaiʻi “Ocean Stewardship Fees”.  Hearing dates have been set for proposed rules to govern the requirement that all commercial vessels operating in Hawaiʻi collect a $1 dollar ocean stewardship user fee from each passenger carried or customer served. Big Island Video News. Maui Now.

Agencies seek to designate areas as critical habitat for green sea turtles. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serv­ice and NOAA Fisheries are proposing to designate more than 2,000 acres of nesting and basking beaches in Hawaii as critical habitat for the threatened green sea turtle. Star-Advertiser.


Waikiki church resuming lunch ministry after pause to appease city safety concerns.  Free hot meals for the needy at St. Augustine by the Sea Catholic Church in Waikiki will resume Monday on church grounds in a move to appease Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi and others who urged that the social ministry be discontinued due to public safety concerns. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu triples homeless cleanup crew efforts. The city has tripled its workforce that clears homeless encampments across Oahu every day and night — Monday through Friday — with some cleanups on weekends. Star-Advertiser.

City, state ‘public carry’ laws caught in the crosshairs. Honolulu and the state both recently enacted laws establishing “sensitive places” where the “public carry of firearms” is prohibited, but the measures conflict when it comes to how properties that do allow guns on the premises are required to communicate that to their customers. Star-Advertiser.

Congress members seek registry to track health effects of Red Hill. Members of Hawaii’s congressional delegation have introduced bipartisan legislation that would require the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to set up a new registry to track and collect health data from people who were exposed to tap water laced with jet fuel from the Navy’s Red Hill fuel facility in 2021. Star-Advertiser.

Downtown Honolulu landscape is shifting for workers, residents, shoppers and visitors.  Commercial real estate brokerage firm Colliers International has reported that from 2020 to 2022, Oahu’s office market — largely concentrated downtown — lost over 240,000 square feet of occupied space, driven mainly by around 9,900 lost office jobs at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, followed by a partial rebound of about 5,800 jobs by the end of last year. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii developer is asked to do more for evicted residents. An official letter requesting that a local developer provide greater assistance to more than 100 residents facing eviction at a Moiliili rental complex due to the pending construction of a 43-story condominium tower at the same site has been sent by the Honolulu City Council chair. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Keeping it in the family: Farmers using state land laud new law regarding lease extensions. Big Island farmers are praising a bill that Gov. Josh Green recently signed into law extending lease renewals for up to 30 years in certain agriculture parks on the neighbor islands. Tribune-Herald.

Latest Round Of TMT Arguments Delayed By Land Board. The Hawaiʻi BLNR says oral arguments scheduled for July 28 concerning the Thirty Meter Telescope have been deferred. Big Island Video News. Tribune-Herald.

More than two dozen people on Big Isle sought after vanishing between 2021 and 2023.  There currently are 25 open missing person investigations involving Big Island residents who vanished between 2021 and 2023, according to the Hawaii Police Department. Tribune-Herald.

MISSING IN PARADISE: Children of HPP man, 76, hopeful public can help find him.  Saturday marked six months of searching for William Bishop, 76, who went missing around 2:30 p.m. on Jan. 22 near his home in Hawaiian Paradise Park. Tribune-Herald.


Fine urged for damage caused by yacht off Maui.  The state Department of Land and Natural Resources is recommending a “conservative” fine of about $117,000 for the yacht owner responsible for damaging coral and live rock at Maui’s Honolua- Mokuleia Bay Marine Life Conservation District. Star-Advertiser.

MEO wins 5-year county contract for bus paratransit service.  Maui County has awarded another $4.2 million, five-year contract to Maui Economic Opportunity to continue to operate the Maui Bus Americans with Disabilities Act paratransit service, the nonprofit announced Thursday. Maui News.

Seniors On Lanai Are Facing ‘Heartbreaking’ Choices In Their Quest To Age At Home.
Efforts are underway to improve the resources available, but there are currently few options for people in need of significant care. Civil Beat.


Kilauea gets new preschool classroom.  Several state officials were at Kilauea School on Thursday, where they visited a new preschool classroom set to open next month as part of Lt. Gov. Sylvia Luke’s Ready Keiki initiative. Garden Island.

Friday, July 21, 2023

Patsy Mink quarter design unveiled, corrupt union boss gets more than 11 years, dog attack likely killed monk seal pup, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

US Mint Releases Design For Patsy Mink Quarter. The United States Mint on Thursday announced designs for the third year of the American Women Quarters Program. Mink, who died in 2002, was the first woman of color to serve in Congress and championed gender and racial equality, affordable child care and environmental protection. Civil Beat. Star-Advertiser.  Hawaii News Now.  KHON2.

Former Hawaii union boss is sentenced to federal prison.  The former business manager of a Hawaii labor union who was convicted of rigging a vote to raise dues and taking members’ money to pay for his family’s extravagant lifestyle was sentenced Thursday morning to more than 11 years in federal prison. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.  Maui Now.  Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Hawaii’s Clean Energy Transition Faces Steep Hurdles, Study Finds. Aggressive action must be taken by all sectors of the state’s economy if Hawaii wants to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045 as mandated by state law, according to a new study commissioned by Hawaiian Electric. Civil Beat.

‘They’re working us to death’: Hotel workers calling for change. Hawaii’s hotel industry could face another strike during the 2024 summer unless things change according to the union that represents thousands of hotel workers. KHON2.

State unemployment rate sinks to 3.0%. Hawaii’s unemployment rate dipped to 3.0% in June, its lowest level in more than three years, and is expected to keep heading lower as the state’s economy strengthens. Star-Advertiser.

Matson sees pickup in trade, but forecasts a big drop in earnings. Matson Inc. said shipping demand picked up in the second quarter from the first three months of the year, and expects business to improve through 2023. Star-Advertiser.

UH Got Nearly $516M In Extramural Research Funding. Here’s What That Means. The University of Hawaii set a new record in grants received from the federal government, industry and nonprofit groups. Civil Beat.

Visitor snorkeling deaths continue to rise. According to preliminary state health data, from 2013 to 2022, there were nearly 800 fatal ocean drownings, with 54% being visitors compared to residents. Nearly 30% of those fatalities were due to snorkeling, while 21% were swimming. KHON2.


HART board calls for more financial information on Honolulu rail.  Just three weeks after the opening of the first segment of Skyline, the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation board is pressing its executive director for more financial information on ongoing construction of the city’s rail project and questioning why the board was not fully made aware of a $99.1 million lawsuit filed earlier this month by a contractor. Star-Advertiser.

City director reports drop in Honolulu building permit backlog.  During a special meeting Wednesday of the Honolulu City Council’s Committee on Planning and the Economy, DPP Director Dawn Takeuchi Apuna told the panel that her current staff had managed to knock down the backlog of 3,600 applications awaiting pre-screening by nearly 70%. Star-Advertiser.

Neighborhood Board Election Outcome Reversed After Rematch. The Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board incumbent who asked for a re-vote after a series of computer glitches has won the repeat election, and the Honolulu City Council is asking for a written report on what went wrong with the original vote. Civil Beat.

City starts installation of new smart parking meters. New smart parking meters are now going up on Honolulu’s sidewalks, with the first 300 already installed in the Chinatown area. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu Condo Board Members Feel ‘Muzzled’ By Management Companies. Hired to manage properties, the companies frequently tell board members to not talk to contractors or others outside board meetings. Civil Beat.

Honolulu officials hope for new liquor commission administrator by end of summer.  City and County of Honolulu officials say progress is being made within the liquor commission. Hawaii Public Radio.

Monk seal pup’s death likely caused by dog attack, officials say. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration today said it had determined that monk seal RS48, or Ho‘omau Lehua, likely died from a dog attack, based on necropsy and histopathology results. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.  KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Lack of clarity plagues Mauna Kea transition.  Act 255 called for a transition period in which the previous manager, the University of Hawaii, would share duties with the new one, the Maunakea Stewardship Oversight Authority, over a five-year time frame that started July 1. Star-Advertiser.

Federal lawsuit claims Hilo attorney maliciously prosecuted, defamed by Roth and Waltjen.
A Hilo attorney has filed a federal lawsuit against Hawaii County, Mayor Mitch Roth, county Prosecutor Kelden Waltjen and Deputy Prosecutors Kate Perazich and Sylvia Wan. Tribune-Herald.

County mulling management, use of tiny structures.  The county is looking for a new non-profit to manage Ka Lamaku, the tiny homes located at the entrance of Old Kona Airport Park in Kailua-Kona that have served as an emergency shelter since 2020. The shelter closed on June 30 when service provider HOPE Services Hawaii’s contract to manage the emergency shelter expired. West Hawaii Today.


Electrical upgrades might seem like a simple job — anywhere other than Kalaupapa. Reliable electricity is critical to daily life and operations in Kalaupapa on Molokaʻi and the current electrical system is aged and failing. It was first installed in 1969. Hawaii Public Radio.

An island sold for a dollar? A little over a decade ago, tech billionaire Larry Ellison made headlines when he acquired Lānaʻi for $300 million. How Lānaʻi came under private ownership for the first time.  Before James Dole transformed Lānaʻi into one of the world's largest pineapple plantations, another man set his sights on the island. In 1909, businessman William Irwin bought nearly the entire island of Lānaʻi for $1.  Hawaii Public Radio.


Volunteers make an impact at Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank. With the start of school looming in less than two weeks, a group of 20 volunteers from Starbucks and Mason Taylor of Southern California made an impact on the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank’s (KIFB) school preparations on Thursday. Garden Island.

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Pilot shortage impacting Hawaii travel, Blangiardi signs Honolulu tax relief bills, Maui approves general excise tax surcharge, syphilis cases spike, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

National pilot shortage is impacting Hawaii travel. A national pilot shortage is here, according to aviation analysts, and it is starting to impact Hawaii. Local airlines are looking to hire pilots but whether the islands have enough resources to train them could be in question. KHON2. Hawaii News Now.

Lawyer who accessed governor’s private info regains access to electronic system. A Maui defense attorney had his electronic filing privileges restored by the state after he was locked out of accessing a system used by about 1,500 criminal justice partners for pulling personal information from four parking tickets paid by Gov. Josh Green. Star-Advertiser.

State prevails in $1M dispute over installation of fire alarm systems at 8 public schools
. A Circuit Court judge has ruled in favor of the Hawaiʻi Department of Education in a $1 million lawsuit relating to the installation of fire alarm systems at eight public schools throughout the the state. Big Island Now.

State urges expanded screening, treatment of syphilis as cases increase.
  As the number of cases of syphilis in women and newborns continues to increase throughout the state, the Hawai‘i Department of Health is urging enhanced screening in health care interactions other than prenatal care, saying the situation is alarming and requires immediate attention. Big Island Now. Star-Advertiser.

‘Calvin’ response assessed; public reminded that Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.  Governor Josh Green, M.D., praised Hawai‘i’s handling of former Tropical Storm Calvin and cautioned that the storm was just the first challenge in a hurricane season that lasts through November. Maui Now. Garden Island.  Hawaii News Now.

Division of Aquatic Resources to hold hearings on ocean stewardship fee. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources is hosting a series of hearings to gather public input on a user fee that commercial vessel operators will have to collect from each passenger carried or customer served next year. Garden Island.

A Hawaii soldier receives the Army’s highest peacetime honor for valor.  Spc. Rene Rodriguez, a 22-year-old Army medic from El Paso, Texas, was given a standing ovation from the crowded theater as he accepted the Soldier’s Medal in recognition for saving a woman’s life last year in Wahiawa when he intervened to stop a man from beating her. Star-Advertiser.


New Honolulu tax credits aim to assist homeowners. Relief is coming for homeowners. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi signed two measures into law on Wednesday, July 19. KHON2. KITV4.

Nearing end of sentences, ex-cops in Kealoha scandal moved to halfway house. Derek Hahn and Ming-Hung ‘Bobby’ Nguyen have been moved to Sacramento to serve out the remainder of their time in a halfway house. A federal jury found them guilty of conspiracy in June 2019 in what’s known as the “mailbox trial.” Hawaii News Now.

Navy Wastes 2 Billion Gallons Of Water During Red Hill Cleanup. Regulators required the Navy to make a plan for reusing the water but never required them to act on it. Civil Beat.

Developers Are Betting Big On Honolulu’s Business District. Will It Pay Off?. The investment mirrors a countrywide trend toward downtown revitalization efforts. Civil Beat.

Abuse victim of Makaha church elder entitled to $40M, judge says
. A victim of childhood sexual abuse by an elder of the Makaha congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses is entitled to $40 million in damages, a Circuit Court judge has ruled. Star-Advertiser.

Bill would waive late fees to limit abandoned cars
. To prevent more abandoned vehicles from appearing on Oahu’s public streets and roadways, a proposed city ordinance seeks to waive certain motor vehicle taxes, fees and penalties for those unable to pay them after a five-year period. Star-Advertiser.

Bargaining begins after nurses end seven-day walkout at 82-bed care facility.  A day after nurses and certified nurses assistants ended a seven-day strike at Oahu Care Facility, both sides returned to the bargaining table in a bid to reach a new deal.  Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Calvin passes Big Island with no major damage. Tropical Storm Calvin came and went without causing any significant damage, Gov. Josh Green and Hawaii island Mayor Mitch Roth said at a news conference Wednesday. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Now.

Kailapa Hawaiian Homestead Under Water Conservation Notice. The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands is urging Kailapa residents to conserve water following notification of malfunctioning water wells in north Hawai‘i.  Big Island Video News.

Governor signs emergency proclamation for Uncle Billy’s hotel.  The process to demolish the former Uncle Billy’s Hilo Bay Hotel will be sped up by an emergency proclamation issued Tuesday by Gov. Josh Green. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now.


Maui Raises General Excise Tax To Pay For Housing Infrastructure. The 0.5% surcharge takes effect next year. The council voted 8-0 on Tuesday to adopt a 0.5% surcharge on top of the state’s 4% GET, starting Jan. 1. Civil Beat. Maui News.  Hawaii News Now.

Mahi Pono Fined Nearly $10K For Causing Dust In Central Maui. Several residents had complained last year about the cloud of dust that occasionally blanketed Central Maui. Civil Beat. Maui Now.


Reminder: Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative meeting Thursday night. Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative members are invited to attend the cooperative’s annual meeting on July 20 at the Kauaʻi Philippine Cultural Center in Puhi. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m., and the meeting will start at 6:00 p.m. Kauai Now.

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Tropical Storm Calvin sparks closures, fizzles as it passes south of Hawaii, feds propose massive honu green sea turtle habitat protection zones, Honolulu pushes back against governor's emergency housing proclamation, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Feds propose over 428,000 sq. mi. of honu habitat protections surrounding Hawai‘i, Florida.  In an effort to protect the endangered green sea turtle, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Tuesday a proposal to designate over 8,500 acres of beaches and nearly 428,000 square miles of coastal waters as protected critical habitat. For more information on the critical habitat proposal, visit the FWS site. Garden Island.

As nationwide school meal demands decline, Hawaiʻi sees similar trends.  The Hawaiʻi Department of Education has seen a 20% decline in kids getting school breakfast and a 17% drop in school lunch, according to the Food Research and Action Center’s June survey.  Hawai‘i is one of few states that allow students to be denied food if their parents fail to pay the lunch bills.  Hawaii Public Radio.

Governor’s Housing Proclamation Draws Skeptical Response From Oahu Officials. Council members and neighborhood board chairs are voicing concerns over the lack of public input in the process. Civil Beat.

Full text of governor's emergency proclamation on housing can be found here.

Calvin past Hilo, makes way south of other islands.  Tropical Storm Calvin is 179 southwest of Hilo and 250 miles south southeast of Honolulu.Wind speeds are 45 mph as it makes its way south of the rest of the islands at 20 mph. KHON2. KITV4.

 Under a new law, state’s fuel tax will be phased out.  At a Tuesday meeting of the Hawaii County Council’s Communications, Reports and Council Oversight Committee, representatives of the state Department of Transportation briefed council members about a proposed new fee that would charge drivers based on how much they use state and county roads. Tribune-Herald.

Hollywood strike rallies Hawaii talent.  About 100 members of Hawaii’s chapters of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and the Writers Guild of America, rallied Tuesday afternoon at the state Capitol to vocalize their support for Hollywood’s first industrywide strike in 63 years, shutting down television and film productions around the globe. Star-Advertiser.


No Safety Check, No Problem: Honolulu Clerks Helped Car Dealers Cheat System
. Three Honolulu motor vehicle employees were caught last year fraudulently modifying safety check records – a scheme that allowed used car dealers to save money on repairs and potentially put drivers at risk.  Civil Beat.

Honolulu City Council bill targets lying to get ‘monster home’ permit.  A measure meant to prohibit giving false statements to city planners as a means of cracking down on “monster homes” has drawn sharp criticism from some who say the language in the draft bill is too vague, too punitive and will lead to more waste in local government. Star-Advertiser.

Civil settlement in sex assault case against former high school football stars on hold. The Saint Louis School and players were sued for an alleged rape that happened in October 2018, in the parking garage of the campus after the Saint Louis Crusaders won the ILH championship. Hawaii News Now.

HPD investigation launched after dead newborn discovered in trash can. Honolulu police confirm a newborn baby was found dead at the Kuhio Park Terrace public housing complex on Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.

State investigators leading probe of OCCC killing. The state Department of the Attorney General assumed control of the homicide investigation started by Honolulu police after a 36-year-old Oahu Community Correctional Center inmate was found dead in his cell July 6. Star-Advertiser.

Nonprofits financially impacted by COVID-19 have another chance at relief.  The City and County of Honolulu has reopened its Nonprofit Relief Program application. Nonprofits that have been financially impacted by COVID-19 can apply for the $15 million available through the program. Hawaii Public Radio.

Photo Shoot At Iolani Palace Blurs Line Between Hawaiian Royalty And Real Estate. The use of Iolani Palace as a backdrop for an advertisement in Modern Luxury Hawaii magazine has exposed a loophole in the state’s film permit system for culturally sensitive locations.  Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Schools, government offices, parks closed Wednesday.  Hawaii County officials, meanwhile, said they have expanded emergency shelters.  Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Gov. Green issues emergency proclamation for former Uncle Billy’s hotel in Hilo.  The proclamation said the condition of the property and hotel has attracted trespassers, enabled drug use, fighting and other illegal activities, and has experienced numerous fires.  Big Island Now.


Jonathan Likeke Scheuer Is On The East Maui Water Board. The Maui County Council has confirmed Jonathan Likeke Scheuer to represent the Hawaiian Homes Commission on the board steering the new East Maui Community Water Authority, marking the council’s final action in a heated monthslong process to get it up and running. Civil Beat.

Maui ocean water quality monitoring program celebrates 100th sampling session.  Maui’s volunteer-based ocean water quality monitoring program Hui O Ka Wai Ola has been evaluating water quality in Maui since 2016. This week, the program celebrated a special milestone: its 100th sampling week in South Maui. Maui Now.


Kaua‘i County accepting proposals for grants-in-aid program.  The County of Kaua‘i Office of the Mayor is accepting proposals from nonprofit organizations for its fiscal year 2023-24 grants-in-aid program. Eligible nonprofit organizations can now apply for varying amounts up to $10,000 of funding. Kauai Now.

Shark sighted at Kekaha Beach Park. A shark sighting at Kekaha Beach Park on Monday afternoon prompted a no swimming advisory until further notice from the County of Kaua‘i Ocean Safety Bureau. Garden Island. Kauai Now.

Keiki Bike Safety Day on Saturday in Lihu‘e.  Hawai‘i Pacific Health announced the annual Keiki Bike Safety Day is at Wilcox Medical Center on Saturday from 8 to 11 a.m. Garden Island.