Monday, April 1, 2024

Legislature mulls boat harbor dredging, redirection of affordable housing funds, Honolulu council advances resident-preference housing plan, missile test off Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

A bill advances in state House to pay for small boat harbor dredging. A bill to provide state funding for maintenance dredging at small boat harbors statewide has advanced to the Finance Committee in the House of Representatives. Maui Now.

Flow of affordable-housing funding faces redirection. A state agency that helps finance affordable-housing development in Hawaii faces having its funding award criteria dictated by the Legislature to favor state and county projects. Star-Advertiser.

Affordability still a challenge for Hawaii homebuyers. The annual income needed for major homeownership costs is $145,151 in Honolulu County, $118,454 in Hawaii County, and $208,806 in Maui County. But the average wage earner in Honolulu County makes $65,715, and the average is $54,561 in Hawaii County, and $58,201 in Maui County. Star-Advertiser.

Big rent-to-own housing push by Home Lands agency praised, pilloried. The state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands is pursuing its biggest homestead development initiative in history, but one expanding piece of the plan aimed at helping low-income beneficiaries is distressing some stakeholders. Star-Advertiser.

HTA emerges from legislative crosshairs in fight for funds. The Hawaii Tourism Authority is poised for a comeback in the state Legislature and in all likelihood will emerge this session with a recurring lump sum budget — that’s no small feat for an agency that endured cutbacks, organizational changes, and the threat of defunding over the last several sessions and returned this year with the looming threat of carryover bills calling for its repeal. Star-Advertiser.

Family caregivers tax credit moves through Legislature. Though the initial family caregiver tax credit bill fell through, House Bill 2404 remains alive in the Senate Ways and Means Committee. KHON2.

Legislators seek voters’ input from mailer survey. Some legislators have come to rely on surveying their constituents ahead of final votes on issues such as whether to legalize recreational cannabis for adults or dip into the state’s rainy day fund to help Maui recover from the Aug. 8 wildfires. Star-Advertiser.


‘Resident-preference’ housing measure advances. Under the campaign-like slogan “Keep Hawaii, Hawaii,” Honolulu City Council members Radiant Cordero and Tyler Dos Santos-Tam have introduced legislation that seeks to  ensure that any housing created by the city, or with city funds, be first offered to those who live and work on Oahu. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

A Dispute Between The AG And Honolulu Prosecutor Is Playing Out In The Senate. Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Steve Alm quit taking minor criminal cases generated by state law enforcement last year. Civil Beat.

Bills to crack down on illegal game rooms finally get a hearing after mounting community pressure. Two bills aimed at cracking down on illegal game rooms will finally get a hearing before Honolulu’s City Council this week. In November, lawmakers proposed a package of legislation meant to address landlords who host illegal game rooms on Oahu. Hawaii News Now.

‘1,000 Steps Backward’: Navy Says Its Vast Testing Of Pearl Harbor Water Has Been Flawed. For two years, the Navy said water test results indicated no problems. Civil Beat.

Water is safe at Hickam Elementary School, officials say. State and federal officials say that water tested at Hickam Elementary School for potential petroleum contamination is safe after an “unvalidated” test found high levels early this month. Star-Advertiser.

One Reason For Persistent Speeding? Roads Whose Designs Seem To Invite It. Following the deaths of two cyclists hit by a car along a main road in Ewa, some lawmakers and officials are reiterating their calls to tackle the issue of speeding not just through more law enforcement but also through changes in road design. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Longer County Council terms? A bill introduced by North Kona Councilman Holeka Inaba proposes a charter amendment that would double the length of council members’ terms in office from two to four years. Tribune-Herald.

Bees causing a buzz: County bill would change how beehives, apiaries are regulated
. The Big Island will be abuzz Tuesday about a proposal to allow bees to be kept on residential and other properties. Tribune-Herald.

Maunakea fence to protect wildlife from cats. The ‘ua‘u, or Hawaiian petrel, is a highly endangered species of bird that is primarily found on Maui but was rediscovered on Maunakea in 2021 for the first time in nearly 70 years. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News.

2 Hawaiʻi Island hospitals get federal funds to improve access to medical records. The $2.5 million will help Kona Community Hospital and Kohala Hospital continue to enhance their technological infrastructure, ensuring streamlined access to medical records. Hawaii Public Radio.


Maui producer named new County Film Commissioner. Brian Kohne, an award-winning music producer and filmmaker who grew up on Maui, has been named as the new County of Maui Film Commissioner, according to an announcement by the county’s Office of Economic Development today. Maui News.

Visitors to Maui down in February 2024 as wildfire recovery continues.
There were 181,301 visitors on Maui in February 2024, and visitor spending was $443.1 million, according to new data released by the state Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism. Maui Now.


American and Australian forces conduct a missile defense test off Kauai. The U.S. Missile Defense Agency, in cooperation with the U.S. Navy and Australian forces, successfully conducted an intercept of a medium range ballistic missile test target on Thursday using a Standard Missile-6 — or SM-6 — with a special software upgrade. Star-Advertiser.

Non-native coral found multiple times in the water off Anini Beach. Since the original discovery back in 2021, the Reef Guardians have repeatedly found non-native coral at Anini Beach. Garden Island.

No comments:

Post a Comment