Showing posts with label Dr. Sarah Park. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dr. Sarah Park. Show all posts

Monday, February 1, 2021

Hawaii GOP chair resigns in QAnon Twitter backlash, Court: Mauna Kea police presence warranted, unemployment snags persist, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Linked in photo
Hawaii Republican Party Chairwoman Shirlene Ostrov via LinkedIn

Hawaii GOP chair resigns following backlash over tweets defending QAnon followers. The head of Hawaii’s Republican Party is stepping down. The party announced late Sunday that Shirlene Ostrov resigned after four years as chair. Hawaii News Now.

Who’s Leading The Hawaii House GOP? Nobody Knows. The four minority members are split 2-2 on who should represent the chamber. Meanwhile, the party’s chair has resigned over controversial tweets. Civil Beat.


Hawaii telework bill among measures backed by the Women’s Legislative Caucus. Government workers would be given greater flexibility over their work schedules under a bill that would require all state departments to come up with telework and alternative work schedule policies. Star-Advertiser. Garden Island.

‘Overpayment’ Reviews Causing Latest Delays To Hawaii Jobless Benefits. Many locals, still unemployed in the pandemic, are getting stuck as they try to secure extended benefits from federal COVID-relief packages. Civil Beat. Maui Now. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

State Health Department Is Mum On Former Epidemiologist’s Departure. The department says that Dr. Sarah Park, criticized for her leadership during the pandemic, left the department the last day of 2020. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s electricity most expensive in the nation, but tax credit extension could help. Rooftop solar installations in Hawaii were up 55% in 2020, despite the economic turmoil brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. KHON2.

Can You Make Money Being A Farmer In Hawaii? Often lost amid the talk of growing more food in Hawaii is that Hawaii’s biggest crops aren’t foods eaten here, but things grown mainly to export. According to the UDSA, the state’s three biggest cash crops in 2017 were seed crops, coffee and macadamia nuts. The seed crops, mostly corn shipped to farmers elsewhere, were valued at $120.8 million; macadamia nuts, $53.9 million and coffee, $43.8 million. Civil Beat.

Some Expectant Mothers In Hawaii Are Steering Clear Of Hospitals During the Pandemic. Midwives say they’ve been so busy that they’ve sometimes had to turn away clients. Civil Beat.

Officials discuss various ways vaccinations are happening in Hawaii.
There are four major ways the state Department of Health is working to get COVID-19 vaccines out to the public, state Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Char told lawmakers last week during a joint informational briefing with the House Committee on Pandemic and Disaster Preparedness and the state Senate Committee on Health. Tribune-Herald.

HAWAII VIRUS TRACKER — Jan. 31: 82 New COVID-19 Infections And 3 Deaths. Sunday’s cases included 59 on Oahu, nine on Maui, 10 on the Big Island and four residents diagnosed out of state. Two of the deaths were on Oahu and one was on Maui. Civil Beat.


Looking to revitalize Oahu’s economy, Honolulu mayor considers easing restrictions. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi is looking to loosen restrictions on bars, restaurants, and youth sports. Hawaii News Now.

Civil Beat Sues Honolulu Police To Make Officer Overtime Data Public. Honolulu Civil Beat filed a lawsuit Friday to get data from the Honolulu Police Department on the amount of overtime each officer has worked in the past five years. Civil Beat.

State seeks innovative ways to finance and build new OCCC. State officials are asking construction contractors, financiers and investors around the world to come up with innovative ways to pay for and build a new, cost-effective and efficient Oahu Community Correctional Center that would ideally provide a template for future state construction. Star-Advertiser.

DOCARE Academy’s first cohort of graduates is ready to serve. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources has added 12 new Conservation and Resource Enforcement officers to its team due to a new collaboration with Honolulu Community College. Star-Advertiser.

North Shore wind farm settlement offers added funding, protections for endangered species. The operator of the Kawailoa Wind farm in the hills above Waimea Bay has agreed to pay for greater protections for endangered species as part of a contested case hearing settlement announced Friday. Star-Advertiser.

OHA trustees launch new effort to develop Kakaako Makai property. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs on Thursday took the first step toward kick-starting the stalled development of its waterfront holdings in Kakaako, valued at $200 million. Star-Advertiser.

Kailua’s Kawainui Marsh to undergo major 2-year restoration.
An East Oahu wetland is getting some much-needed improvements thanks to a new restoration effort. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu developer takes plunge into COVID-tinged housing market.
The developer of a planned twin-tower condominium project near Ala Moana Center is preparing to sell units after holding off last year because of COVID-19. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Appellate court affirms police presence on Maunakea. Hawaii County Police Chief Paul Ferreira had the legal authority to request police officers from other counties to help maintain order on Maunakea during 2019 protests over the Thirty Meter Telescope, the state Intermediate Court of Appeals said Wednesday in an opinion upholding a ruling by 3rd Circuit Court Judge Henry Nakamoto. West Hawaii Today.

Change in opinion: HPD to comply with Act 47, ID officers fired, suspended for misconduct. A day after stating the Hawaii Police Department would not submit until court-ordered the names of officers suspended or fired for misconduct, pursuant to a law that went into effect last fall, the county has changed its stance. West Hawaii Today.

Planning for the future; Proposed capital improvements measure includes bond funding for HMC expansion project. A proposed expansion of Hilo Medical Center is a capital improvement priority for one local legislator. Tribune-Herald.

Bill would allow luxury property owners choice to send tax money to county or charity. The tax, approved last year, imposes $13.60 tax per thousand dollars worth of property value over $2 million for property in the residential category, compared to $11.10 in tax per thousand for the portion of the property under $2 million. West Hawaii Today.


Harbor Lights COVID-19 cluster is now ‘stablilized’. Residents, community groups band together to assist complex. Maui News.

Five Maui Coast workers test positive for virus
. Five employees at the Maui Coast Hotel in Kihei have tested positive for COVID-19, though three have already recovered and are back at work and the other two are expected to return shortly, according to the hotel’s general manager. Maui News.

County considers purchase of Maui News property. Maui County is considering the purchase of a 6.3-acre parcel that includes The Maui News offices in Wailuku. Maui News.


Council passes enhanced shoreline-setback ordinance
. The county Planning Department isn’t completely satisfied with new additions to the county’s shoreline-setback ordinance that were recently passed through the Kaua‘i County Council. Garden Island.

County requests proposed Westside beach access bill be modified.
A hearing notice proposing a pilot permit program at Polihale State Park and Kekaha Beach Park to allow for beach driving was the first time the County of Kaua‘i heard of such a proposal. Garden Island.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Hawaii traveler quarantine likely to be extended again, state epidemiologist takes leave as Health Department leadership flounders, group threatens legal action over contact tracing fail, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaii dawn ©2020 All Hawaii News
When will tourism in Hawaii reopen? One expert predicts it might not be until 2021. The trans-Pacific quarantine rules for travelers to Hawaii remains in effect until at least Oct. 1, but one travel expert thinks that will be pushed back again. Hawaii News Now.


Embattled state epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park put on paid leave. The turmoil at the top of the state’s public health organization reflects deep frustration with Hawaii’s inability to halt the spread of the coronavirus in the past two months. Star-Advertiser.

Sarah Park Is Stepping Aside At Hawaii Department Of Health. The embattled state epidemiologist is taking a leave of absence, health department officials announced late Thursday. Civil Beat.

Shake-up in DOH leadership continues amid global pandemic.  Late Thursday afternoon, Sept. 3, the Hawaii State Department of Health confirmed Dr. Sarah Park will be taking a paid leave of absence from her position, Park’s decision comes after officials have called for her to step down from her duties. KHON2.

DOH: Embattled state epidemiologist Sarah Park takes leave of absence. Dr. Sarah Park, the state’s embattled epidemiologist, has taken a leave of absence, the state Health Department confirmed Thursday night. Hawaii News Now.

Dr. Sarah Park takes leave of absence from Department of Health. Dr. Sarah Park is taking a leave of absence from her work at the Department of Health. KITV4.


How Hawaii’s Reliance On ‘Labor Intensive’ Fax Machines Hampers Contact Tracing. Before asking to go on leave, the epidemiologist helping to lead the effort to identify how COVID-19 is spreading in the islands was trying to make the process more efficient. Civil Beat.

Lawmakers want Gen. Hara to take the lead on contact tracing. There are renewed calls for the governor to make more changes at the Department of Health after recently hired Dr. Emily Roberson took an abrupt leave of absence. KHON2.

Failure To Communicate: State Provides Inadequate COVID-19 Outreach, Services To Pacific Islanders. Pacific Islanders have been hardest hit by COVID-19 in the islands. They are catching the virus in disproportion to their small numbers in the population. One reason is that -- as with young people -- public information on how to avoid the virus has been failing to reach them in ways they can act on it. Hawaii Public Radio.


Analysis: Hawaii Students Most At Risk Of Learning Loss. The study was based off a one-week snapshot of U.S. Census Bureau data from May during nationwide school closures. Civil Beat.

Survey seeks input from families about distance learning. A nonprofit organization created for parents, educators and policymakers for public schools in Hawai‘i is looking for parents statewide to fill out an online survey by Tuesday, Sept. 8. Garden Island.


Kupuna advocacy group threatens Health Department with legal action over Hawaii contact tracing. A group that advocates for senior citizens has begun legal action to increase the number of contact tracers in Hawaii and to require the Department of Health to provide translation services. Star-Advertiser.

Governor Discusses Hawai‘i’s New Safe Travels Program. Governor David Ige and Douglas Murdock, Enterprise Technology Services Chief Information Officer, participated in a Facebook live Thursday, to discuss the new Safe Travels mandatory online form. Maui Now.

New Safe Travels app explained. Safe Travels Hawaii, the web application intended to manage travel to the state, went live Tuesday and has replaced paper documentation for arriving airline passengers. Tribune-Herald.


Uncertainty over new federal unemployment benefits. Unemployed workers who receive at least $100 per week in state unemployment benefits will be eligible for another $300 per week for four weeks, but when they’ll get the money is unclear. Star-Advertiser.

$300 in extra benefits good only through Aug. 22. State officials are developing a plan to distribute additional unemployment benefits from the Lost Wages Assistance Program, a new federally funded unemployment insurance plan. Tribune-Herald.

State has paid out nearly $3 million in unemployment. Since March 1, the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations has paid out nearly $3 billion in unemployment insurance benefits for 3,015,688 weeks claimed since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a Thursday press release. Garden Island.


University Of Hawaii Regents Reject ‘Shell Game’ Budget Proposal. The administration says it is in “triage” mode, facing $138 million in lost revenues. Civil Beat.

University of Hawaii athletic department projecting a $9.3 million deficit for fiscal year due to the impact of COVID-19. The price tag on the pandemic for the University of Hawaii athletic department could be a $9.3 million deficit for the current fiscal year, doubling its previous record shortfall. Star-Advertiser.

COVID-19 puts University of Hawai'i football and volleyball on hold. COVID-19 has put a hold on two of the program's biggest money makers football and women's volleyball. KITV4.


VIRUS TRACKER — Sept. 3: 211 New Cases And 4 Deaths In Hawaii. More than 2,400 Hawaii residents under the age of 30 have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Civil Beat.

Hawaiʻi COVID-19 Updates For Thursday, Sept. 3rd: 211 New Cases, 4 Deaths. There were 211 newly reported cases of COVID-19 in the State of Hawaiʻi as of noon on Thursday, health officials announced. Big Island Video News.

DOH Reports 211 New COVID-19 Cases Statewide, 4 Deaths. The Hawai‘i Department of Health reported 211 new cases of coronavirus on Thursday, bringing the statewide total to 8,991. DOH also reported four new COVID-related deaths bringing the death toll to 79. Big Island Now.


Campaign Spending Commission Investigating Anti-Amemiya PAC. People who donated to the PAC are not among Hawaii’s typical political contributors. Civil Beat.

Some quarantine violators are being told to leave quarantine again to answer to a judge. Travelers charged with violating the mandatory 14-day quarantine are being ordered to leave their isolation location — in some cases, violating the mandatory quarantine order again — to appear for court proceedings. Hawaii News Now.


H-3 testing turnout rises as state flouts the feds again. Surge testing for COVID-19 continued on the H-3 Freeway on Thursday with more than 5,000 signing up in advance and vehicles lining up for miles on both sides of the Koolau mountains. Star-Advertiser.

Thousands participate in free ‘surge’ coronavirus testing site on H-3 Freeway. The Honolulu Fire Department reported more than 5,000 people registered for Thursday’s testing. Hawaii News Now.


Here’s What Honolulu Is Doing To Test Hard-Hit Communities For COVID-19. City officials say they are trying to get testing sites up and running quickly, and plan to keep improving outreach efforts. Civil Beat.

Labor Day weekend to test Oahu’s ‘social gathering’ ban. The three-day Labor Day weekend represents a major test of how people across Oahu comply with — or ignore — Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s ban on nearly all indoor and outdoor social gatherings to slow the spread of COVID-19. Star-Advertiser.

State sees increase in calls for homeless outreach on Oahu. Hawaii State Homeless Coordinator Scott Morishige said their office has been getting more calls from the public asking for outreach services to go out to homeless camps that have been popping up around Oahu. KHON2.

Illegal game rooms, booming amid the pandemic, are moving into residential areas. The Honolulu Police Department said it is conducting more raids of illegal gaming in residential areas on Oahu during the pandemic. Hawaii News Now.

DOH Closes, Fines Illegal Adult Care Home. The Grateful ARCH in Honolulu must pay $249,000. The Hawaii Department of Health on Thursday shuttered an illegal adult residential care home at 4416 Ukali Street in Honolulu and assessed it a large fine. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Council leaders call for lockdown: Chung, Eoff worry virus is getting out of control. The Hawaii County Council leadership is asking Mayor Harry Kim to institute a temporary stay-home order to stem the rising tide of coronavirus infections on the island. West Hawaii Today.

DOH Struggles To Trace Surge In Big Island Cases To Large Gatherings. A rapid recent growth in the number of infections has many residents wondering exactly what is driving the surge. Civil Beat.

Kim will not isolate Miloli‘i; testing planned Saturday for village residents. Mayor Harry Kim on Thursday said he will not isolate the community of Miloli‘i as requested by island legislators. West Hawaii Today.

“Narnia” Area In Hilo Now Closed Due To Large Group Gatherings. The State of Hawaiʻi says the waterway about the J7 ranch along the Wailuku River has been closed due to concerns over large gatherings. Big Island Video News.


Hawaii County Sets Up COVID-19 Command Center. Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim has opened a coronavirus Central Command Post near the Edith Kanakaole stadium in an effort to get better communication between county, state and federal agencies. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i County Opens Central Command Post to Combat COVID-19. Aunty Sally Kaleohano’s Luau Hale in Hilo is being converted into an emergency operation center as county officials continue their efforts in combating the spread of COVID-19. Big Island Now.


Park-goers take word of new restrictions in stride. With COVID-19 cases on Hawaii Island continuing to surge, Mayor Harry Kim announced Wednesday that all county and state beach parks will close today until Sept. 18. Tribune-Herald.

Prosecutors concerned about release of HCCC felons. With two dozen felony inmates at Hawaii Community Correctional Center set to be released over the next few days, Hawaii County prosecutors have concerns about public safety. Tribune-Herald.

Fake emails plague PUC’s review of Honua Ola Bioenergy project. The state Public Utilities Commission, which is being pressured to reconsider its decision to terminate the Honua Ola Bioenergy deal on the Big Island, said it has received fake emails supporting the project. Star-Advertiser.


A slow return at Haleakala National Park after a phased reopening. Park attendance plunged 97% in June from the same month last year and was down 61% over the first half of 2020, according to National Park Service statistics. Star-Advertiser.

Imua launches texting program. Service offers facts, tips and activities for families. In response to growing concerns of parents over distance and remote learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Imua Family Services launched a free text messaging system for families with young children to provide “useful, safe and timely” lessons and techniques. Maui News.


KPD aware of Love Has Won group. The Kaua‘i Police Department is aware of a group currently moving to Kaua‘i that residents have raised concerns about throughout the week. However, KPD states there is no evidence of illegal activity. Garden Island.

CARES Act funding boosts Malama Na Apapa’s visibility. The nonprofit organization primarily focuses on marine-ecology education, community-outreach programs in schools, and surveys to collect data about the health of Kaua‘i’s reefs. Garden Island.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

New state contact tracer on leave after Health Department upheaval, downsized 75th WWII anniversary commemoration held, many jobless still wait for unemployment checks, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Dr. Emily Roberson Aug. 20, 2020
More Health Department Drama: New Contact Tracing Head Asks For Leave. Announced with fanfare by Gov. David Ige last month, Emily Roberson says she is frustrated with trying to do her job and says leadership needs to make clear the chain of command. Civil Beat.

Newly hired head of Hawaii’s contact tracing program asks for leave, cites chain-of-command issues at Department of Health. A leave request Wednesday from the head of Hawaii’s COVID- 19 contact tracing program citing chain-of-command issues is reinvigorating calls to clean house at the state Department of Health. Star-Advertiser.

Head of state's contact tracing program is on leave. Emily Roberson has been on the job for about two weeks. Lt. Governor Josh Green told KITV4 part of Roberson's problems include micromanaging from Dr. Sarah Park. KITV4.

‘We With Sarah!’ Co-Workers Defend Embattled Epidemiologist. Campaign buttons, poster bear catchy slogans supporting Dr. Sarah Park. Civil Beat.


Critics raise concerns over possible release of COVID-19 vaccine this fall. Lieutenant Governor Josh Green says he's been following the vaccine trials and believes more research and testing is needed before it's ready to be used on humans. KITV4.

State’s confusing COVID-19 reports make it difficult to track spread of virus, experts say. Data that doesn’t match, moving averages that don’t make sense — the state’s reporting of COVID-19 is confusing even for scholars analyzing the information. Hawaii News Now.

Health Department Struggled To Warn Young People About COVID, New Efforts Aim To Fix It. The state Department of Health continues to record a dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases among young people. One key reason may be that public messages to avoid the virus haven't yet effectively reached them. Hawaii Public Radio.


State’s Acting Labor Director: We’re Ready To Handle A Surge In Jobless Claims. Those assurances come as DLIR still struggles to resolve thousands of complex claims that have proven difficult to resolve. Civil Beat.

State pledges to launch ’virtual call center’ to field questions about jobless benefits. The state says a “virtual call center” is in the works to deal with the endless delays on its unemployment hotline. Hawaii News Now.

The Cost Of Failure To Contain The Virus? Massive Layoffs. With no end in sight to the shutdown of tourism, dozens of companies have filed letters with labor officials outlining job cuts and extended furloughs. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s jobless benefit boost may be used up. The new $400 weekly bonus is retroactive to Aug. 1 and may already be exhausted because state officials aren’t sure if they can obtain such funds beyond four weeks. Star-Advertiser.


Defense Secretary Mark Esper and several World War II veterans from Hawaii mark the 75th anniversary of war’s end. The commemoration Wednesday on the fantail of the battleship Missouri — the site of Japan’s unconditional surrender on Sept. 2, 1945, in Tokyo Bay — featured 12 local World War II veterans and comments by Defense Secretary Mark Esper, among others. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii remembers end of World War II in scaled-back ceremony aboard Battleship Missouri Memorial . Defense Secretary Mark Esper stopped off in Hawaii on Wednesday to speak at a scaled-back and socially distanced ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II aboard the Battleship Missouri Memorial at Pearl Harbor, on whose decks Japan surrendered in 1945 in Tokyo Bay. Pacific Business News.

In somber ceremony, veterans and dignitaries mark 75th anniversary of the end of WWII. The Greatest Generation and its WWII veterans provide a legacy of service and sacrifice that we should all look up to, said Secretary of Defense Mark Esper on Wednesday at a ceremony aboard the USS Missouri to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. Hawaii News Now.

Wednesday marks the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII. Wednesday, September 2 marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II where more than 400,000 U.S. service men and women made the ultimate sacrifice. KITV4.


5 staff, 2 inmates within Department of Public Safety test positive for COVID-19. Within the division, there are now 49 active cases among staff: 43 at OCCC; two at Halawa Correctional Facility; two at the Women’s Community Correctional Center; and the two new cases within the Sheriff Division. Star-Advertiser.

VIRUS TRACKER — Sept. 2: 339 New Cases, 1 Death In Hawaii. Some of the cases announced Wednesday were actually identified last month. Civil Beat.

Hawaii reports 1 coronavirus-related death on Oahu and 339 new cases. Hawaii Department of Health officials today recorded one new coronavirus-related death and 339 new cases, bringing the statewide totals since the beginning of the pandemic to 75 fatalities and 8,991 cases. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiʻi COVID-19 Updates For Wednesday, Sept. 2nd: 339 New Cases, 1 Death. Big Island Video News.

339 New COVID-19 Cases, Includes 90 Cases From Delayed Reporting (302 O‘ahu, 2 Maui, 35 Hawai‘i Island). Maui Now.


H-3 testing to proceed today despite federal objection. Drive-thru surge testing for COVID-19 is scheduled to continue on the H-3 Freeway today as the state defies the Federal Highway Administration for a second time and risks the loss of federal funding. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Caldwell says Oahu lockdown remains at two weeks, for now. Nearly a week into Oahu’s stay-at-home, work-from-home order, it’s not clear whether it might have to be extended. Mayor Kirk Caldwell says the current plan is still to keep it for two weeks. KHON2.

Free COVID-19 tests at Kalihi public housing met with high demand. The effort to mass test residents for COVID-19 in Hawaii’s public housing is expanding. Hawaii News Now.

Chamber of Commerce asks city to delay plastic ban that takes effect in 2021. On January 2021, restaurants on Oahu will no longer be able to give people plastic utensils, straws or plastic bags with handles for take-out food. This is part of a law that passed last year. KHON2.

Corruption sentencing hearings for Katherine and Louis Kealoha rescheduled again. A U.S. judge today set a Nov. 30 sentencing date for retired Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his now-estranged wife, Katherine Kealoha, who was a former high-ranking city prosecutor. Star-Advertiser.

New HPD commission meets, as citations handed out are on the rise.  The newly assembled police commission held their first regular meeting Wednesday. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

County, state beach parks to close Friday as virus cases surge on Big Island. With COVID-19 cases on Hawaii Island continuing to surge, Mayor Harry Kim announced Wednesday that all county and state beach parks will close for two weeks starting Friday. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Beach Park Closure: Amendments To Mayors Rule Detailed. Starting on September 4, beach parks can only be used to access to the ocean, exercising, fishing and gathering food, and using the bathrooms and shower facilities. Big Island Video News.

Gov Approves Mayor’s Request to Close Beaches for 2 Weeks. Gov. David Ige approves Mayor Harry Kim’s request to close Hawai‘i Island’s beaches for two weeks in an effort to stem the spread of COVID-19. Big Island Now.

Delegation seeks closure of Milolii Fishing Village due to virus. The entirety of Hawaii Island’s delegation asked Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim on Wednesday to restrict access to and test all residents of the Milolii Fishing Village in South Kona as COVID-19 cases rack up. West Hawaii Today.

Call For Miloliʻi Fishing Village Closure After COVID-19 Outbreak Reported. Lawmakers are asking Mayor Kim to close the South Kona fishing village and take other actions after a cluster of COVID-19 was identified. Big Island Video News.

18 more residents at state veterans home in Hilo test positive for COVID-19. More than half of the residents at Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home have been infected by COVID-19. Tribune-Herald.

Council seeks scrutiny of FCC permits: Nonbinding resolution supports safety regulations of wireless facilities. The Hawaii County Council unanimously approved a resolution Wednesday supporting the Natural Resources Defense Council and other elected officials who have petitioned in federal court for stricter environmental review before the Federal Communications Commission approves wireless communication facilities and other sources of radiofrequency emissions. West Hawaii Today.


New Maui Partnership Assists Local Ranches While Providing Food to Those in Need. Maui Mayor Michael Victorino announced today a new CARES Act funded partnership with local ranchers to provide ground beef to Feed My Sheep and people in need. Maui Now.

A Second Maui Judiciary Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19. The Hawaiʻi State Judiciary confirmed a second positive COVID-19 case involving an employee at Hoapili Hale on Maui. Maui Now.

700 Lanai resort workers are put on furlough. More than 700 workers for Four Seasons Resorts Lana’i, who were furloughed Aug. 11, continue to receive medical benefits and will be brought back when the two luxury resorts reopen, resort officials said Tuesday. Maui News.


Kauai councilman’s meth ring trial postponed to next year. A U.S. judge today postponed trial for 12 people accused of drug trafficking in Hawaii, over the objections of a councilman accused of leading the ring. Associated Press.

Kaua‘i Veterans Center is still open for business. The Kaua‘i Veterans Council in Lihu’e was recently awarded a $62,660 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act Grant from the county to help keep the Kaua‘i Veterans Center open to the public during this pandemic. Garden Island.

Unemployment fraud disrupting PUA. Steven Roy Carvalho submitted a full-page color print out of him holding up his driver’s license to his face. Surely, it’s him, but even that hasn’t been enough to prove his identity to the state. Garden Island.

Meet The New Cult In Town: Love Has Won, Now Quarantining On Kauai. Residents are concerned about the group giving the spiritual community there a bad name. Civil Beat.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Caldwell extends Oahu lock-down, but opens parks; Kim mandates masks on Hawaii Island; Victorino defies state beach ban on Maui, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

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Hawaiian Airlines flight at Honolulu airport ©2020 All Hawaii News
On average, more than 125 visitors fly to Hawaii every day despite coronavirus quarantine. The Hawaii Tourism Authority reported today that 444 trans-Pacific passengers arrived on Monday, including 111 visitors and 151 residents. Star-Advertiser.

The visitor industry showed signs of deterioration before hotels began to close. The rapid deterioration of Hawaii’s hotel industry in the wake of COVID-19 lockdowns began to hit its stride in March, with occupancy plummeting by at least 37% across every island. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers looking to diversify Hawaii’s economy away from tourism. The COVID-19 pandemic has been a major hit to the tourism industry and businesses that rely on it. KHON2.


State reports just 2 additional coronavirus cases but 2 more deaths. The number of identified coronavirus cases in Hawaii inched upward to 586 Tuesday based on two new positive test results, while the number of COVID-19 deaths in the state reached 12. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s COVID-19 Death Toll Reaches 12. Two men over the age of 65 died late Monday evening due to coronavirus complications. Civil Beat.

State reports 2 new COVID-19 fatalities, bringing Hawaii’s death toll to 12. The state is reporting two more COVID-19 fatalities in Hawaii, in a grim reminder that while the daily case count from the disease is on the decline many remain very ill. Hawaii News Now.


She’s Running Hawaii’s Virus Response. But Should We Trust Her? Here’s a deeper look at State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park, why she’s made certain decisions and why some medical professionals think she’s wrong. Civil Beat.


Report: Dramatic cuts to state worker pay would hurt Hawaii’s already-ailing economy. University of Hawaii researchers are warning proposed pay cuts of up to 20% for state workers could hurt the state’s already-ailing economy. Hawaii News Now.

Public worker union urges Ige to borrow from feds instead of cutting workers’ pay. The head of the state’s largest public worker union is urging Gov. David Ige to borrow money from the federal government if necessary to avoid deep pay cuts for public workers, and U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz said Tuesday he also wants to explore the borrowing option to help close a $1.5 billion state budget shortfall caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Governor David Ige Address To State Employees. The governor posted a video address aimed at state employees, in which he thanks everyone for their efforts, and said no decisions have been made regarding salary reductions. Big Island Video News.


Hawaii unemployment checks, except for gig workers, will include extra $600 federal weekly payment starting Wednesday. So far more than 244,000 Hawaii filings have been made in the wake of COVID-19. That’s overwhelmed the antiquated system and created lengthy waits. Some Hawaii applicants fear the money will run out before they get what’s owed to them. Star-Advertiser.

State labor director gives update on unemployment system, benefits. Hawaii workers already receiving unemployment benefits because of the COVID-19 pandemic should start receiving their $600 weekly “plus-up” payments in addition to their regular claim payments starting today. Tribune-Herald.

Stay at home extension will stress unemployment funds, but federal assistance is on the way. With the City and County of Honolulu’s stay at home order extended until at least May 31st, many of the state’s over 240,000 unemployed or partially unemployed residents are going to continue to need benefits from the state and federal government. KHON2.


Experts Warn Against Using Antibody Tests As It Becomes Available In Hawaii. Antibody tests may be the key to learning how far COVID-19 has spread in Hawaii, and to getting people back to work. However, the state Department of Health doesn’t think the currently available tests are reliable. Hawaii Public Radio.

Our DC Delegation At Home: Cooking, Yardwork, Surfing And Politics. Each member of Hawaii’s federal delegation has taken on a different role as the federal government struggles to respond to the growing coronavirus pandemic. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Airlines brings in 1.6 million face masks. A Hawaiian Airlines passenger plane whose 3,920-cubic-foot belly was filled with protective masks for Hawaii’s people has landed. Star-Advertiser.

Earth Day turns 50. Both Earth Day and the Clean Air Act turn 50 years old today, and American Lung Association marked the occasion by releasing their annual State of the Air report, which gives states and counties a letter grade on air quality. Garden Island.


Mayor Kirk Caldwell reopening city parks for exercise, extending Honolulu stay-at-home order. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said Tuesday that he is extending Oahu’s stay-at-home, work-from-home order “with modifications” through May and is reopening city parks — for exercise only — beginning at 5 a.m. Saturday. Star-Advertiser.

Caldwell Extends Oahu Stay At Home Order To May 31. The city also wants to ramp up its testing capacity by providing community health centers with more test kits. Civil Beat.

O‘ahu Extends Mandatory Lockdown Through May. Honolulu County Mayor Kirk Caldwell will extend O‘ahu’s shelter-in-place order through May 31, he announced at a press conference Tuesday afternoon. Big Island Now.

City extends stay-at-home order through May 31, but will reopen parks for exercise. Mayor Kirk Caldwell is extending the city’s stay-at-home order through May 31, but says city parks will reopen Saturday for limited exercise activities. Hawaii News Now.

All 300 Oahu city parks to reopen on Saturday for exercise only. Users are allowed to walk, jog, run or bike, but no gathering. KITV4.


Honolulu police arrest 91 in connection with coronavirus emergency violations. Honolulu police have issued 7,801 warnings and 3,010 citations to date for violations of the emergency order for the coronavirus outbreak. Star-Advertiser.

Tourists' IG posts get them busted for breaking 14-day quarantine. Frustrated Hawaii residents are turning to social media to identify and report people violating COVID-19 restrictions and bragging about it on social media. KITV4.

Visitors Arrested On Oahu For Violating Quarantine. Two visitors staying in Waikiki were arrested Tuesday morning for violating the state’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for all travelers, according to the COVID-19 Joint Information Center. Civil Beat.

Two visitors arrested in Waikiki for violating coronavirus self-quarantine. A 34-year-old woman from Las Vegas and a 33-year-old man from Sydney, Australia were arrested Tuesday morning for violating the emergency rules put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Visitors arrested for violating emergency rules on Oahu. Four more visitors were arrested this morning on Oahu for violating emergency rules. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Kim’s new mask rule more strict than governor’s proclamation. A new emergency rule announced by Mayor Harry Kim requires essential businesses to refuse service to customers who do not wear face masks or coverings. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii Island Mayor Harry Kim issues strict rules in response to coronavirus. Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim today issued a new emergency rule mandating that all customers age 5 and older wear face masks or coverings before entering essential businesses or riding the bus, among other requirements. Star-Advertiser.

Mayor Kim Issues New Rule Mandating Face Masks At Businesses. Hawaiʻi County Mayor Harry Kim on Tuesday signed a new emergency rule (No. 3) that mandates face masks at businesses, discourages hoarding of essentials, and details how employees must take action if they experience symptoms of illness. Big Island Video News.

Kim Institutes Strict Face Mask, Hand Sanitizing Policies on Big Island. Hawai‘i County Mayor Harry Kim bolstered a state mandate to wear face masks in public with a county Rule of his own. Big Island Now.


Prolonged rainfall triggered Kilauea eruption, study finds. It was excessive and prolonged rainfall that triggered the 2018 eruption of Kilauea Volcano, according to new research due out today. Star-Advertiser.

FEMA Awards $61 Million To Rebuild Lava Covered Roads In Puna. Senators Mazie Hirono and Brian Schatz today announced that Hawaiʻi County will be able to use the money to repair roads damaged during the 2018 Kilauea eruption. Big Island Video News.


Higa announces mayoral bid: Former County Council chairman and public TV CEO says strong leadership needed. Former County Council Chairman Stacy Higa is throwing his hat into an increasingly crowded ring for mayor. West Hawaii Today.

Kona roller derby team members raise funds, purchase 1,000 N95 masks for health care workers. Members of the Echo City Knockouts Roller Derby Team are ready to make their first donation of 1,000 N95 masks to Big Island health facilities. West Hawaii Today.


Maui Mayor: Police Will Not Issue Citations for Walking or Running on Maui Beaches. Maui Mayor Michael Victorino said he will not be issuing citations for people that run or walk on the beach because there is no clear delineation on what’s a state beach and what’s a county beach. Maui Now.

Despite state order, Maui’s mayor tells his residents it’s OK to exercise on the beach. Maui County’s mayor said Tuesday that exercising on the beach is fine with him, and police in his jurisdiction won’t cite anyone walking or running on the sand. Hawaii News Now.


Maui Memorial works to improve communication, safety policies amid cluster of cases. To some longtime staff members at Maui Memorial Medical Center, the April 6 revelation that at least 15 employees had tested positive for COVID-19 — and the maelstrom of controversy and recrimination that followed — was as predictable as it was distressing. Star-Advertiser.

New Maui COVID-19 death is first tied to hospital outbreak; two more new cases in Maui County. State health officials said this morning that there were two more coronavirus deaths reported late Monday, one on Oahu and one on Maui, and that the Maui fatality is linked to the hospital’s outbreak. Maui News.


Kaua'i County mayor already working on plans to reopen the Garden Isle's economy. After just four positive coronavirus cases were confirmed Monday, many are wondering when our local economy might open back up. KITV4.

Ige declares Kauai disaster area after March flooding. Gov. David Ige has declared Kauai a disaster area following the flooding on the island late last month. Star-Advertiser.

Kahili Quarry Road closed. A large sinkhole around a culvert under Kahili Road has triggered the closure of the dirt road access to the north side of the Kilauea River, an area that local residents have taken under their wing by forming the Kahili Community Stewardship Area. Garden Island.