Showing posts with label Hawaii Health Systems Corp.. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hawaii Health Systems Corp.. Show all posts

Friday, January 12, 2018

Federal money for homeless, Takai campaign spending money long after his death, Honolulu license backlog, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Homeless man in Honolulu ©2018 All Hawaii News
Hawaii’s legislative leaders said Thursday that $11.7 million in federal grants to support 35 homeless assistance programs in the state will help meet a critical need. Garden Island.

The congressional campaign for the late U.S. Rep. Mark Takai has paid out nearly $90,000 for consulting services to a Honolulu firm run by the committee’s treasurer in the 18 months since Takai’s death, with a payment issued as recently as four months ago, federal campaign records show. Star-Advertiser.

Will The HPD Scandal Jump-Start Police Reform In The Legislature? So far, lawmakers have failed to establish a standards and training board and lift the secrecy in police misconduct cases. Civil Beat.

Report Skims Surface on Hawaii Cesspool Mess. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hurricane damage thousands of miles away triggers shortage of key medical treatment in Hawaii. Saline solution in an IV bag is one of the more common sights in hospital rooms. KHON2.

A Department of Health survey released in 2016 confirmed Hawaii’s children have the highest prevalence of tooth decay in the nation. Garden Island.

Hundreds marched at the State Capitol to end human trafficking in Hawaii.  KITV.

Randy Baldemor, chief operating officer of the Hawaii Tourism Authority, has notified the state agency that he will be resigning his position on March 2. Star-Advertiser.


A group of concerned citizens filled the Honolulu Liquor Commission hearing room to capacity Thursday in their quest to stop a liquor application for the Denny’s under construction at 2538 Kuhio Ave. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Army National Guard dedicated a new $38 million aviation support facility hangar at Kalaeloa on Thursday that will help support its more than two dozen Chinook, Black Hawk and Lakota helicopters. Star-Advertiser.

City officials are urging the thousands of Oahu motorists who need to renew their driver’s licenses this year to plan ahead to know what documents they need to bring to the Driver Licensing Office to help speed up the process. Projections show renewals are expected to jump to an estimated 9,000 a month islandwide in 2018, up from what has been an average of 3,000 a month, city officials said. Star-Advertiser.

U.S. military officials posted a warning letter to all Hawaii-based service members last month, alerting them that several areas in Waikiki have been flagged for high levels of "violent crime" and "illegal activity." Hawaii News Now.

Less than two months after the state completed a $500,000 clean-up under the Nimitz viaduct, squatters are moving back in. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu Fire Department released two new videos from the Marco Polo Fire. KITV.

Hawaiian to use tax savings for Honolulu airport renovations. Hawaiian Airlines said Thursday that if the new federal corporate tax rate for 2018 were in place in 2016, the airline would have paid $38 million less in taxes. Star-Advertiser.

A California real estate investment firm is making a new case to Hawaii regulators for carving up Oahu’s historic Dillingham Ranch and selling pieces to buyers who could build homes on 70 lots zoned for agriculture. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii appears to be seeing the worst flu season in years with patients inundating medical clinics and emergency rooms across Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

Former Jefferson Elementary teacher found guilty of sexually assaulting girl. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Mayor Harry Kim testified at an informational briefing on homeless solutions before the State House of Representatives Health & Human Services Committee on Tuesday. Big Island Video News.

Drafting the future of Pahoa. What’s your idea for Pahoa’s future? That’s a question residents might be asked later this year as Hawaii County begins developing a Pahoa village master plan. Tribune-Herald.

The public comment period for arsenic cleanup plans at a Hilo commercial property has ended. The property, at the intersection of Kekuanaoa and Mililani streets near Waiakea Villas condominiums, is the site of a former building materials production plant. Tribune-Herald.

The Edwin C. Olson Trust No. 2 faces a fine of up to $64,960 from the state land board for unpermitted work that allegedly impacted Amauulu Camp Cemetery. Big Island Video News.

The Graying Of The Big Island. More than one in four Big Islanders – 27.4 percent – is 60 or older, according to the latest population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau. That’s higher than Kauai (26.1 percent), Maui County (23.6 percent) and Honolulu (22.4 percent). Civil Beat.

Keauhou restaurant Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai was cited by the state Department of Health for removing a food safety placard, and other major food code violations. West Hawaii Today.

The state health department has fined Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai restaurant in Kailua-Kona for several violations, including the intentional removal of a yellow placard and replacing it with a green one. Star-Advertiser.


The state Department of Transportation today responded to criticism over proposed adjustments to the Lahaina Bypass Phase 1B2 and work at the Keawe Street interim northern terminus in West Maui. Maui Now.

The state Department of Transportation on Thursday took issue with West Maui Rep. Angus McKelvey’s criticisms of the department’s plans for the newest phase of the Lahaina bypass and the adjustments made at the northern end of the bypass as traffic flows to Honoapiilani Highway at Keawe Street. Maui News.

The Pacific Cancer Institute’s medical director Thursday accused Hawaii Health Systems Corp. of using public “scare” tactics last month to pressure the institute that provides cancer radiation therapy into accepting new and “unfair” lease terms at its Maui Memorial Medical Center facility. Maui News.

Teledentistry Pilot Project Expands to Maui. Maui Now.

Local real estate brokerage and management firm Hawaii Life has acquired Maui property management company Island Oasis Realty. Star-Advertiser.


Church helps feed the community. A couple from Canada dropped off food, intact and packaged items that were remaining following their stay on Kauai Thursday morning at the Kauai Independent Food Bank. Garden Island.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Hawaii seniors most fit, money for military, union wins hospital smoking judgment, Akana named OHA chairwoman, new Big Island police chief, E. coli in Maui water, 5k pound fishnet pulled off Kauai shore, big plans for Kakaako park, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2016 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Kupuna hula © 2016 All Hawaii News
Hawaii leads the nation for the highest physical well-being for older residents, a new report shows. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii's military installations will receive more than $277 million in construction under the defense spending bill passed by the U.S. Senate Thursday. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii ranks among the top 10 states for percentage of households with wired and wireless broadband access at speeds in excess of 25 megabits per second, according to a study by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. Pacific Business News.

After winning a judgment from the Hawaii Labor Relations Board, a public employees union says its members shouldn’t have to follow a recently enacted state law that prohibits smoking at 12 medical facilities in the islands. Civil Beat.

The State Building Code Council proposed to update the minimal requirements for building construction and design to the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code. If approved, all state buildings will have to comply with the new code. Star-Advertiser.

Veteran trustee Rowena Akana was elected chairwoman of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees on Thursday, edging out incumbent Chairman Robert “Bob” Lindsey of Hawaii island during a rancorous meeting that saw three members walk out in protest. Star-Advertiser.

At-Large Trustee Rowena Akana
was elected as the new chair of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees Thursday. Civil Beat.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources is seeking public input regarding the latest overview of forest lands throughout the islands. Tribune-Herald.

The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission wrapped up its annual meeting Friday as it often has in the past, with many of its international members and nonprofit advocates frustrated by the slow progress made on pressing issues like tuna overfishing and overall accountability on the high seas. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Clearly, something is going down at the BOE, and David and Dawn Ige are in the thick of it, though all we get is ham-handed obfuscation and frustrating denials. Star-Advertiser.


A major plan to overhaul the park spaces near the waterfronts in the Honolulu neighborhood of Kakaako that includes a sports complex, a beer garden and food concessions, cleared a big hurdle after receiving the approval from the governor. Pacific Business News.

Drug raids target public housing. Star-Advertiser.

Multiple arrest warrants were issued Thursday morning in connection with a drug operation in Honolulu, according to the FBI. KITV.

Two nonprofit organizations hope to provide farm-fresh produce and job training opportunities for the needy through a planned community farm on 14 acres of vacant state land in Waimanalo. Star-Advertiser.

Two Hawaii nonprofits plan to lease 14 acres from the state for a community farming project that includes a learning center in Waimanalo in Windward Oahu, according to public documents. Pacific Business News.

The University of Hawaii Manoa’s Graduate Student Organization is pushing to return Dole Street, a major road through the campus, to its original Hawaiian name. The name Kapaakea has ties to the area’s Native Hawaiian history, while Dole symbolizes American oppression of the Hawaiian people, students said. Civil Beat.

City officials Thursday confirmed that an estimated 201,600 gallons of untreated sewage spilled onto about an acre of vacant land near the Ko Olina Golf Club after a sewage main broke last week. Star-Advertiser.

Lots of golfers were happy when the Ala Wai Golf Course driving range reopened on Monday, Dec. 5.KHON2.


The county Police Commission unanimously selected Deputy Police Chief Paul Ferreira on Thursday to succeed his boss, Chief Harry Kubojiri. Tribune-Herald.

One of former Mayor Billy Kenoi’s last actions Monday was to veto a bill that would have given the County Council more say over the hiring and firing of the county’s civil attorneys. West Hawaii Today.

Tsunami Scare As Mayor Kim Seeks Civil Defense Admin. Big Island Video News.

A Hawaii Island Energy Cooperative representative said Thursday he is under a “cone of silence” regarding efforts to acquire Hawaii Electric Light Co. Tribune-Herald.

At a memorial service Thursday, one theme emerged over and over about the departed Dr. Cliff Kopp, who during his last decade of life was widely regarded as one of Hawaii Island’s most prolific community advocates. West Hawaii Today.


The Maui Department of Water Supply detected E. coli bacteria in the ʻUalapuʻe Shaft on Molokaʻi. Maui Now.

Native Hawaiian beneficiaries on Maui are supporting a rule change that would prevent the sale of empty and undeveloped homestead lots, saying that selling lots allows wealthier families to jump past those who’ve sat on the waiting list for years. Maui News.


The community is invited to a celebration of Tim Bynum’s life at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 16 at Lydgate Park’s main pavilion. Garden Island.

5,000 pound fishing net pulled from waters off Kapaa. Garden Island.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Hawaii Health Department sued over lack of elderly home inspection reports, cool schools bids come in lower, Kauai water quality lawsuit filed, campaign money follows incumbents, bottled volcanic water comes right from the tap, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii Health Systems Corp.
Leahi Hospital, courtesy Hawaii Health Systems Corp.
The state’s failure to post inspection reports of state-licensed care facilities online has prompted advocates for the elderly to go to court to force the state to comply with the law. Civil Beat.

A senior citizens advocacy organization is suing the Hawaii Department of Health for failing to post inspection reports online for care homes that serve seniors and the disabled. Star-Advertiser.

Construction bids for the state’s “cool schools” initiative have started to trend lower since the Department of Education announced last month that an initial round of proposals came in significantly over budget. Star-Advertiser.

American fishermen are digging in for a fight over a proposal to shut down the vestiges of the U.S. harvest of shark fins, prized for soup and traditional medicine in Asia, and send a message to the rest of the world. Associated Press.

Why It’s So Hard To Find A Fresh Voice In Hawaii Politics. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz has an easy route to re-election. Oh, there are candidates who’d love to unseat him. They just struggle to get noticed. Civil Beat.

U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono isn’t up for election until 2018, but she continues to add more cash to her campaign coffers. Hirono raised $111,352 from April 1 to June 30, according the latest reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. Civil Beat.

It’s interesting that U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard thinks she needs more money, as she raised more than $420,000 in the April-June period and reported nearly $1.9 million in cash on hand. Civil Beat.


A Board of Water Supply crew is patching a water main break in a sinkhole on Punaluu Valley Road that has left residents without water and a road on which to exit their neighborhood by vehicle. Star-Advertiser.

Darby scooted off to the north a weaker storm Monday, but not before pounding Oahu with enough rain Sunday night to stop freeway traffic, knock out power, spill sewage and trigger some serious flooding. Star-Advertiser.

Feds Finalize $175 Million Plan To Protect Waikiki From Flooding. Tropical Storm Darby was a reminder that a much bigger 100-year flood could devastate Honolulu’s economic engine. Civil Beat.

Honolulu not building enough housing for its population, report says. Pacific Business News.

For the first time since state Rep. John Mizuno originally ran for the Legislature 10 years ago, he faces a Democratic primary opponent in the race for House District 28, which encompasses Kalihi Valley, Kamehameha Heights and part of Kalihi. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Rod Tam Crosses The Aisle To Try To Come Back. Talking with Rod Tam about his guilty plea, his nights in jail and why he’s running for the state Senate as a Republican. Civil Beat.


County water is source of premium brand. The California Department of Public Health is investigating a complaint about Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water involving “issues such as labeling and source water requirements associated with Waiakea.” Tribune-Herald.

No one on the Big Island has been issued a concealed carry license and that is unlikely to change any time soon in the wake of a recent Ninth Circuit Court ruling, attorneys say. West Hawaii Today.

The lava flow from Kilauea’s Pu‘u ‘O‘o vent crossed the Kalapana emergency route Monday afternoon as it approached the coastline. Tribune-Herald.

An active lava flow from Kilauea Volcano’s Puu Oo vent was less than a quarter-mile from the ocean as of Monday morning, according to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Star-Advertiser.

The 61g lava flow has crossed the coastal emergency road that connects the Chain of Craters Road in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park to Kalapana. Big Island Video News.


Plans call for opening a new burial site at the Maui Veterans Cemetery by mid-September, which would add much-needed space for deceased veterans and their spouses, state and county officials said last week. Maui News.

A public hearing on the revised draft Honua'ula Habitat Conservation Plan will be held at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the J. Walter Cameron Center in Wailuku. Maui News.

Five blacktip reef shark pups have recently became a part of the marine life at Maui Ocean Center. Maui Now.


The nonprofit environmental law firm Earthjustice filed a lawsuit Monday against Hawaii’s Agribusiness Development Corporation alleging it allows pesticides and chemicals to flow unchecked through Kauai’s Mana Plain and into waterways. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s Department of Health and Agribusiness Development Corporation are both facing a lawsuit for allegedly polluting Kauai’s Westside waters. Garden Island.

A draft environmental assessment on a proposed residential treatment facility for adolescents on Kauai battling substance abuse is now available for public review. Star-Advertiser.

A draft environmental assessment is being prepared for the repair or replacement of the Kapaa Stream Bridge, on Kuhio Highway near mile marker 10. Garden Island.

Patricia Wistinghausen said the first day representing Kauai as a delegate in the Democratic National Convention was “crazy and crowded.” Garden Island.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Hawaii bills tackle GMO fish, Superferry, animal rights, hemp, wrongfully imprisoned reparations, funding of innovation, elderly programs; Maui GMO ban heads to appeals court; 66 apply for medical marijuana dispensary licenses; fire chiefs claim losses; more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2016 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Kampachi fish at local market © 2016 All Hawaii News
House Bill 686 would prohibit “propagating, cultivating, or farming genetically engineered fish” in state marine waters. The bill, sponsored by Democrat Reps. Kaniela Ing and John Mizuno, has a hearing Wednesday at the Capitol. Civil Beat.

Hawaii lawmakers are tackling issues from animal rights to police accountability as lawmakers head into their third full week of the 2016 legislative session. Associated Press.

The Hawaii Department of Health on Friday released a list of 66 applicants, including actor Woody Harrelson and local technology entrepreneur Henk Rogers, who submitted proposals for the state’s first medical marijuana dispensary system. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Department of Health posts medical marijuana dispensary applicants online.

Lawmakers considered a bill Friday that would legalize and set rules for growing industrial hemp. The law would require growers to register with the state and would clarify the difference between hemp and marijuana. Associated Press.

Hawaii lawmakers are considering a proposal that would require the state to pay $50,000 to the wrongfully convicted for each year they were imprisoned. Associated Press.

The state Senate Committee on Transportation and Energy passed a bill late last week requiring the Department of Transportation to conduct a feasibility study of establishing a ferry system. Civil Beat.

Two state Senate committees are set to hear a bill Thursday that would establish a collective bargaining unit for graduate student assistants working at the University of Hawaii. Civil Beat.

The Kupuna Caucus, which looks out for senior citizens at the Legislature, last week unveiled its package of bills for 2016, including measures to provide caregiver training, long-term care services and funding for resource centers statewide. Star-Advertiser.

Testimony backing a bill to allocate money from the corporate income tax to the innovation sector has received support from several groups in the Startup Paradise ecosystem. Pacific Business News.

The top-ranked doctors in Hawaii Health Systems earn far more than other state workers, even Supreme Court justices. Civil Beat.


There’s a straightforward way to transform Oahu’s crumbling, pothole-plagued roads into the smoother ones that drivers in other parts of the country enjoy, asphalt-pavement industry experts say, but it’s a solution that has eluded the state and city for decades. Star-Advertiser.

For decades, Oahu and the neighbor islands have grappled with hundreds of miles of so-called “roads in limbo,” and the issue continues to affect some local road maintenance, officials say. Star-Advertiser.

The North Shore Chamber of Commerce is urging businesses to share their thoughts about the Laniakea parking situation with state Department of Transportation officials, according to a letter sent last week to chamber membership by its executive director. Hawaii News Now.

A new homeless shelter in Honolulu is banking on the idea that fewer rules could lead to more people off the streets. The Sand Island facility, called Hale Mauliola, has been in business for three months now. Hawaii Public Radio.

Today marks the 15th anniversary of the opening of Kapolei Hale, which was regarded in 2001 as a pivotal investment in development and growth of the Ewa region. Star-Advertiser.

One person has been arrested and dozens more cited during a law-enforcement operation at Kalalau Beach in the Napali Coast State Wilderness Park on Kauai. KHON2.

The deaths of at least three albatross and the destruction of 15 nests at Kaena Point back in December has prompted state lawmakers to call for heightened security at the remote nature reserve. Hawaii News Now.


Police issued almost 700 more speeding tickets on the Daniel K. Inouye Memorial Highway, also known as Saddle Road, in 2015 than in the previous year. Tribune-Herald.

State Sen. Russell Ruderman gave his re-election bid a boost at last year’s end with a $25,000 loan, helping him maintain a sizable fundraising advantage over challenger Greggor Ilagan. Campaign finance records show Ilagan, a Hawaii County Council member representing Puna, raised $8,412 during the last half of 2015, with $5,500 of that coming from a fundraising event in Honolulu. Tribune-Herald.

Fourteen applicants are vying to open the first medical marijuana dispensaries on Hawaii Island, according to information released Friday by the state Department of Health. Tribune-Herald.

West Hawaii Battalion Chief Ty Medeiros claimed Friday he lost $3,000 to $4,000 in overtime every two weeks when he was put on seven months paid leave last year for publicly criticizing Fire Chief Darren Rosario. During a daylong Merit Appeals Board hearing, Medeiros said he was humiliated when he was stripped of his badge and his rank insignia in front of his peers. West Hawaii Today.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is looking for more public input on its September proposal to list 49 species of plants and animals in the Hawaiian Islands as endangered species. The federal agency will offer an informational meeting and a public hearing Tuesday in Hilo to gather input. During the informational meeting. West Hawaii Today.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to hear arguments on a Maui County moratorium on farming genetically modified crops, which was struck down by a federal judge in Hawaii last year. Civil Beat.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments about whether to overturn a federal judge's ruling last year that struck down a Maui County voter-approved moratorium on genetically modified organisms. Maui News.

A legal attempt by a group seeking to halt cane burning by Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. continues in 2nd Circuit Environmental Court, though a judge struck down two claims in a ruling Friday. Maui News.

Maui officials are looking to encourage residents who are illegally operating vacation rentals to go through the permitting process. Associated Press.

The County Council Planning Committee drew closer Thursday to the completion of a bill that would change several portions of the county's short-term vacation rental home law to support tourism while pushing local rental operators to comply with permit laws. Maui News.

A 2nd Circuit judge Friday granted a preliminary injunction against further work on the 113-unit Ma'alaea Plantation housing subdivision - with the developers announcing after the ruling that they would commission an environmental impact statement as requested by project opponents. Maui News.

Officials in Mayor Alan Arakawa's administration are holding "high-level discussions" with Alexander & Baldwin officials about taking more water out of the Wailoa Ditch system for Upcountry customers as A&B's subsidiary Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. phases out production at the end of the year, Department of Water Supply Director Dave Taylor said. Maui News.

The Hawaiʻi State Department of Education Maui District Office will conduct a community meeting to provide information on school attendance boundaries for Maui Waena Intermediate, ʻĪao Intermediate, Baldwin High and Maui High Schools. Maui Now.


Election season has begun and candidate filings are coming in. Three candidates have put their names in the hat for Kauai County Council: Juno-Ann Apalla of Lihue, Matthew Bernabe of Kapaa and incumbent KipuKai Kuali‘i. Garden Island.

Law enforcement and cleanup operations at Kalalau Beach over the past month resulted in dozens of citations, an arrest, and the airlifting of tons of trash from the area. Garden Island.


Maui County Council members approved a recommendation Friday to take the Lanai Community Plan update to Lanai for a public hearing March 12. Maui News.

Looking for the most luxurious Lanai experience you can find? The Four Seasons Resort Lanai may have what is the most expensive luxury suite in the state — the rate for its three-bedroom Alii Suite is $21,000 a night. Pacific Business News.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Tropical disturbance threatens Hawaii, state Supreme Court overturns Waikiki hotel variance, Kaiser Permanente picked for Maui hospitals, Kakaako tech park advances, Sandwich Isles ousts Hee, Kauai to learn about coral bleaching, Kona timeshare project cleared, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Central Pacific Hurricane Center
2:02 a.m. Thursday Hawaii storm track, courtesy Central Pacific Hurricane Center
A developing weather system about 800 miles southeast of Hilo has a high chance of forming into a tropical cyclone in the next few days, according to forecasters. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s long-term care ombudsman is lobbying the federal government to take action that better protects the elderly from inadvertently signing away their right to sue a nursing home should a dispute arise during their stay there. Civil Beat.

President Obama’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders arrived in Hawaii on Tuesday for the first time on a mission to better understand issues facing the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities. Star-Advertiser.

Sandwich Isles Communications Inc. is planning a corporate restructuring that will remove owner Al Hee from “any management responsibilities or involvement” with the company in the wake of Hee’s convictions this summer on federal tax charges, the Hawaiian Homes Commission was told Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.


The Hawaii Supreme Court on Wednesday overturned a city variance that was necessary for Kyo-ya to replace the existing eight-story Moana Surfrider Diamond Head Tower with a 26-story hotel and residential tower. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Supreme Court has ruled that the city shouldn’t have granted a variance to allow a 26-story hotel and residential tower to encroach on a Waikiki shoreline. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s highest court has overturned a city variance granted to Kyo-ya Hotels that would have allowed them to construct a new building along Waikiki Beach outside the developmental restrictions enacted for the Waikiki Special District. Hawaii Independent.

State officials heading a technology park in Kakaako published a draft environmental assessment Wednesday that estimates an initial $39 million phase of what is being called the “Innovation Block” could be completed by 2018, followed by two more perhaps equally costly phases in 2020. Star-Advertiser.

A technology park meant to boost tech industry jobs in the state could be coming to Honolulu as soon as 2020 under a plan being pushed by a state development agency. Hawaii News Now.

The Department of Land and Natural Resources  and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Honolulu District are holding a public meeting on Wednesday, September 30, 2015 to present the Draft Feasibility Study and Environmental Impact Statement on the proposed Ala Wai Canal Project. KHON2.

Honolulu paid $167,500 to two hikers who said they were brutalized by officers, but its Police Department overruled a finding that excessive force was used. Civil Beat.

The University of Hawaii is moving ahead with plans to lease more than 150 acres of vacant land next to the UH-West Oahu campus for mixed-use development to help support the growing Kapolei university. Star-Advertiser.

Transit-oriented developments key in addressing Honolulu's housing crunch, state official says. Pacific Business News.

The City continues its sidewalk enforcement in Kaka’ako and has placed nearly one-third of the homeless individuals and families into emergency shelters. Hawaii Public Radio.

The 77-foot sunken fishing vessel Judy K — covered in mud, algae and barnacles — was floated Tuesday for the first time in eight months at Pier 16 thanks to the Army’s 7th Engineer Dive Detachment taking on the recovery as training. Star-Advertiser.


The alala hasn’t been seen in the wild for about 13 years, but an effort to prevent Hawaii Island’s native crow from going the way of the dodo could soon begin to pay off. According to a draft of the state’s revised Wildlife Action Plan, there are now 114 alala being raised in captivity — enough to begin reintroducing the birds to the island’s forests as early as next year. Tribune-Herald.

A planned condominium timeshare development mauka of Alii Drive has been downsized slightly to accommodate neighbors’ concerns about a family graveyard. West Hawaii Today.

The $60,000 that the IRONMAN World Championships pay to use the Kailua Pier for four days would be cut in half, under a request that the state Board of Land and Natural Resources will consider on Friday. West Hawaii Today.

County workers are piecing together a flood-damaged road shoulder on Kuakini Highway in Kailua-Kona — again. West Hawaii Today.

A Kailua-Kona man who punched a shark and saved a surfer friend has been awarded a Carnegie Medal for heroism. West Hawaii Today.


The Maui Region board of the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation has selected Kaiser Permanente as a potential partner for Maui's three public hospitals. Maui News.

The state’s public hospital system has selected Kaiser Permanente to operate and manage three Maui county hospitals. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Health Systems Corp.’s Maui Regional System Board announced Wednesday that it has selected Kaiser Permanente to enter negotiations with the state and the Maui board to manage the three state-owned hospitals in Maui County. Pacific Business News.

Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui today raised concerns over the selection of Kaiser Permanente by the Hawaiʻi Health Systems Corporation’s Maui Regional System Board as its choice to operate its facilities under a planned partnership. Maui Now.

Maui resident Christopher Profio is asking the Maui Planning Commission to include sugar cane smoke as a factor when granting special management area use permits. Maui Now.

The Water Resources Committee on Wednesday recommended adoption of a resolution approving land purchase agreements for the expansion of the ʻĪao Water Treatment Facility and development of Wailuku Well 1, Committee Chair Gladys Baisa announced. Maui Now.

Short-term rental approved for Helen Hunt, denied for Fleetwood. Planning commission hears requests. Maui News.


Researchers reported a successful result from this week’s bait experiment to eliminate the rat population on Lehua Rock. Garden Island.

Bleachapalooza, a statewide effort to train Hawaii residents how to identify and report sightings of coral bleaching, is coming to Kauai. Garden Island.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Astronomers to gather amid Mauna Kea protests, military kids shortchanging school system, Hawaii Health Systems Corp. workers on Kauai lose jobs, Maui neighbors oppose homeless camp, Honolulu mulls charter changes, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Case Western University
Stars over Mauna Kea, courtesy Case Western University
Forget the lei and mai tai greeting. When more than 2,500 astronomers from around the world converge on Honolulu for their triennial convention Aug. 3-14, they are likely to be welcomed by demonstrators. Star-Advertiser.

The International Astronomical Union will hold its triennial general assembly in Hawaii next month, attracting astronomers from around the globe to discuss science and international collaboration. The 11-day assembly will be held at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu and will attract roughly 2,500 to 3,000 people from more than 75 countries. Pacific Business News.

Convention center preparing security plan for possible protests at upcoming astronomy conference. Ian Lind blog.

Hawaii Schools Missing Out on Aid They’re Due for Serving Military Families. The state relies on federal funding to partially offset the cost of educating the children of service members, but difficulties with tracking how many such students are enrolled could be costing it millions of dollars. Civil Beat.

Oahu residents interested in making the government of the City and County of Hono­lulu operate better are asked to participate in the work of the 2015 Honolulu Charter Commission. Star-Advertiser.

The Save Ka Iwi Coast Coalition has raised more than half of the remaining funds needed by Aug. 30 to purchase 182 acres above the seven-mile Ka Iwi coast. The coalition has raised $268,000, or 54 percent of private funding required from the community to protect and preserve the south shoreline on Oahu. Pacific Business News.

The Hawaii Community Development Authority gave its final approval Wednesday on The Howard Hughes Corp.’s Kakaako residential project at 988 Halekauwila St. Pacific Business News.

It's not permanent housing, but people who are homeless in Kakaako may finally be getting a place of their own. KITV4.

The Honolulu Ethics Commission has rescinded its restrictive news media policy, and adopted a new version that allows its executive director to speak to the press without needing permission and to comment on the potential impact of advisory opinions. Civil Beat.


Plans to fast-track changes to the county concurrency law to accommodate a Hilo judge’s rezoning have come to a screeching halt. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaii County Councilman Greggor Ilagan plans to introduce legislation aimed at further clarifying the county law prohibiting the use of public funds for personal purposes. The bill was drafted in response to a recent audit report detailing misuse of county purchasing cards, or pCards, by Mayor Billy Kenoi’s office and the county Department of Liquor Control. Tribune-Herald.

After years of planning and months of lava-related postponement, construction work on a roundabout at one of the most dangerous intersections in the county is set to begin in August. Tribune-Herald.


A Maui-based outreach organization is proposing to build a new campground facility in Lahaina as a way to help with the island's growing homeless population, but residents are fighting the project. Associated Press.


Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. may be open to the possibility of serving a third term in office, but councilmembers aren’t planning to give him that chance. Garden Island.

Thirty employees in the Hawaii Health Systems Corp., Kauai Region were notified of their pending layoffs on Friday. Garden Island.

A new ordinance allows the Kauai County Fire Department to bill reckless hikers who have to be rescued. But Kauai Fire Chief Robert Westerman said it’s unclear whether the department ever will do so. Star-Advertiser.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Hawaii House and Senate committee agrees on 'skinny' budget, Maui hospital privatization bill passes, sex trafficking, marijuana dispensary, nursing home bills still in limbo, Hawaii County mayor recall petition launched, Thirty Meter Telescope protesters get day in court, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2015 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii state Capitol © 2015 All Hawaii News
House and Senate lawmakers announced they have reached agreement on a new, "very skinny" state budget that would limit general fund spending to about $6.6 billion in the year ahead, or roughly the same total as Gov. David Ige proposed in the draft budget he submitted to lawmakers earlier this year. Star-Advertiser.

A panel of House and Senate lawmakers reached an agreement Tuesday on the final draft of the overall state budget, but some big spending questions will be settled later this week. The conference committee unanimously approved a budget that is $4.3 million over Gov. David Ige’s initial request for fiscal 2016, which starts July 1, and $53 million under his request for fiscal 2017. Civil Beat.

While Hawaii lawmakers discuss extending the general excise tax surcharge to help pay for the over-budget Honolulu rail project, there’s only one bill still alive in the Legislature that would give low-income residents a tax break. Senate Bill 555 would increase the food/excise tax credit, which hasn’t been changed since it was established in 2007. Civil Beat.

Hawaii is the last state in the nation without a comprehensive sex trafficking ban, and lawmakers are trying to shed that distinction. A conference committee of representatives and senators is working on the final version of a bill to ban sex trafficking, but the proposal previously met with resistance from law enforcement. A new version was presented in a hearing Tuesday, and the panel postponed making a decision until Thursday. Associated Press.

Hawaii lawmakers are considering a bill that could keep married couples together on the one hand, but risks displacing Medicaid clients in favor of private-pay clients. Civil Beat.

As the haggling about medical marijuana dispensary legislation enters the home stretch in Honolulu, state Sen. Josh Green, D-Kona, Ka‘u, is advocating the “start small” approach. But at least one Big Island lawmaker on the House side indicates agreement might not be easy to reach on how many dispensaries there should be. West Hawaii Today.

The Hawaii Legislature is passing a bill to ban powdered alcohol before the product has gone on sale in the state. KITV4.

When it comes to sex education in Hawaii, deciding how schools should address the subject is about as messy and confusing for the adults in charge as the topic itself can be for teenagers. Hawaii is one of just 10 states that does not mandate students be provided access to sex education or taught about HIV/AIDS in public schools. Civil Beat.


A special tax credit established to help relocate maritime tenants on the Honolulu waterfront is poised to be expanded and sweetened in ways that some observers estimate could cost the state $20 million in the years ahead. Star-Advertiser.

Developer D.R. Horton polished its community service image Tuesday, two days before a potentially deciding City Council vote on whether to rezone 1,553 acres of Ewa farmland to build Horton's proposed 11,750-home Ho‘opili community. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu Community Correctional Center’s days could be numbered, as the city and state say it’s time for a new facility. KHON2.

A Honolulu City Council committee is looking into taking additional steps to lower homelessness on O’ahu, which increased by 4 percent over last year. Hawaii Public Radio.

The state Health Department has fined two companies nearly $40,000 for illegal dumping in former pineapple field in Whitmore Village. Hawaii News Now.

An exclusive look inside Oahu's illegal street racing scene. Hawaii News Now.

A new survey found that 93 incubator technology companies, who are or have been tenants of Manoa Innovation Center, had a total economic impact of $213.7 million on Hawaii, according to High Technology Development Corp.’s annual economic survey. Pacific Business News.


A Hilo man has begun collecting signatures on a petition to recall Mayor Billy Kenoi, who currently is being investigated by the state attorney general and is the subject of an ethics complaint for personal use of his government-issued credit card. West Hawaii Today.

During a relatively low-key proceeding, 21 of the 31 Thirty Meter Telescope protesters facing petty misdemeanor charges after being arrested on Mauna Kea earlier this month made their first appearance in Hilo District Court on Tuesday, with all but one receiving a refund for their $250 bail. Tribune-Herald.

On Sunday, the Tribune-Herald broke a story about a law group’s efforts to exonerate a co-defendant in one of Hawaii’s most notorious murders. On Monday, a key witness in that effort was dead.

The recent death of Hilo’s Dr. Djon Indra Lim highlights an ongoing shortage of cardiologists on Hawaii Island. For 40 years, Lim — who died April 15 at age 77 — filled a vital role in East Hawaii, and his loss is a major blow, said Hilo Medical Center Interim CEO Dan Brinkman. Tribune-Herald.

A rockfall from the wall of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater triggering an explosion at the lava lake at the summit of Kilauea volcano on Tuesday. The explosive event occurred around 10:20 a.m., and hurled large fragments of molten lava onto the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater, 280 feet above the lake. Big Island Video News.


An estimated 250 people showed up for a public meeting last night in which board members of the Maui Regional System of the Hawaiʻi Health Systems Corporation discussed potential job and service cuts to deal with a projected $28 million budget gap. Maui Now.

Hawaii Health Systems Corp.'s Maui Region Board does not believe cuts to services, staffing and beds would allow Maui Memorial Medical Center to survive for the foreseeable future and stop it from bleeding money should a public-private partnership bill fail in the state Legislature. Maui News.

A panel of state lawmakers has approved a plan that paves the way for Maui hospitals to enter into a partnership deal. A conference committee of senators and representatives passed the bill late Tuesday. Associated Press.

Lawmakers passed historic legislation Tuesday that would allow Maui Memorial Medical Center and the Kula and Lanai Community hospitals to pursue a public-private partnership. Maui News.

State and House conferees approved of a bill on Tuesday that paves the way for the establishment of a public-private partnership for hospitals on Maui. Maui Now.

After years of unsuccessful tries, state lawmakers are poised to pass a deal that would eventually transform the Maui Memorial Medical Center and two other state-owned medical facilities into privately managed entities. Star-Advertiser.

A legislative conference committee made up of House and Senate lawmakers has finalized a bill that would allow a private entity to manage Maui County state hospital facilities in an effort to save the state millions of dollars in operating costs. Civil Beat.

Lower property tax and status quo water rates, along with higher user fees for the Waiehu Municipal Golf Course and Maui Bus, were part of the proposed budget presented by the Maui County Council's Budget and Finance Committee chairman Monday. Maui News.

Transportation Security Administration agents confiscated a non-metallic knife with a 3.5-inch blade that a man tried to pass through security at Lihue Airport. Garden Island.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Protesters halt telescope construction, feds approve NextEra-Hawaiian Electric deal, fire captain investigated for talking to media, VA office falsified benefit claims, Caldwell blasted at rail meeting, Kauai backs off B&B law, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Occupy Hilo media
Mauna Kea TMT blockade, courtesy Occupy Hilo Media
Construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope ground to a halt Monday as more than 50 protesters formed a roadblock outside the Mauna Kea visitor center. Calling the $1.4 billion project a desecration of the mountain, the activists marched back and forth across the Mauna Kea Access Road, making sure to stay within the crosswalk. Tribune-Herald.

Protesters on Mauna Kea are not allowing construction workers to access the summit of Mauna Kea. Crews encountered dozens of protesters on Monday morning who were blocking access to the construction site of the Thirty Meter Telescope. Hawaii News Now.

In a statement, the Thirty Meter Telescope project manager responds to today’s blockade of the Mauna Kea Access Road, saying construction crews “patiently waited for law enforcement to allow our workers the access to which they are entitled." Big Island Video News.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the sale of Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc. to NextEra Energy Inc., a step experts said was expected. The two companies announced the approval Monday. Star-Advertiser.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has approved the planned acquisition of Hawaiian Electric Industries by Florida based-NextEra Energy, according to a joint press released issued by the two companies on Monday. Civil Beat.

Federal regulators have approved Florida-based NextEra Energy Inc.’s proposed $4.3 billion acquisition of Hawaiian Electric Co., one of the major approvals needed to finalize the sale, the two companies announced Monday. Pacific Business News.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission signed off on the pending $4.3 billion sale of Hawaiian Electric Company to Florida-based NextEra Energy, sending the fight to the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission. Tribune-Herald.

A supervisor at the regional Veterans Administration office in Honolulu was manipulating data to make it look like the agency was processing veterans’ benefits claims faster than they actually were, according to a new report by the VA Office of Inspector General. The data manipulation happened last year when there was heightened scrutiny nationwide over how long veterans were waiting to see doctors. Associated Press.

A Honolulu Veterans Affairs supervisor improperly ordered staff to electronically tamper with 143 claims for benefits, allowing veterans to receive money for dependents who were not eligible, according to the VA's inspector general. Star-Advertiser.

This week, HPR is taking a closer look at ‘ōpala—issues surrounding garbage in Hawai‘i. We’re calling the series “Trashing Paradise”---and we begin with a look at some of the history of ‘ōpala in the islands…and some of the economic factors driving its future. Hawaii Public Radio.


Mayor Kirk Caldwell, along with state lawmakers who soon will decide whether to approve a rail tax extension, faced a chorus of angst and frustration from residents Monday over the direction of Oahu's transit project. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and his top transit official took their licks from a decidedly anti-rail crowd during a boisterous town hall meeting at Washington Middle School on Wednesday. Civil Beat.

A wealthy South Korean businessman who bought two Kahala beachfront properties was required to tear out an illegal seawall that was encroaching on the public beach. But the city has since given Lee Kun-hee, the billionaire chairman of South Korea’s Samsung Group, permission to erect a new wall just mauka of the state’s certified shoreline, which scientists say will exacerbate beach erosion. Civil Beat.

Video raises new concerns over animal care at quarantine station. Hawaii News Now.

In our continuing series, “Trashing Paradise,” we take a look at the only landfill on the island of O’ahu …home to 80 percent of the state’s population and vacation destination for more than 8 million visitors each year. Hawaii Public Radio.

Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Christine Wormuth visited Punchbowl cemetery Sunday as the Pentagon considers whether to exhume the bodies of nearly 400 crew members of the USS Okla­homa buried as "unknowns." Many families of the Dec. 7, 1941, casualties want their relatives identified, and the Defense Department now has the scientific capability to make a majority of those identifications. Star-Advertiser.

Residents in Kahuku could see 10 new wind turbines as early as the end of this year. But, before the plan is put in place, the Department of Land and Natural resources needs to check its environmental impact. KITV4.

The state lost a round in court on Monday over a land dispute in Waimanalo. KHON2.

The state Public Charter School Commission decided Monday to temporarily reinstate funding for the troubled Halau Lokahi Charter School, allowing 60 remaining students to finish the school year at the Hawaiian culture-focused campus. Star-Advertiser.

In Honolulu’s Chinatown each morning, adventurous visitors and local residents have a fascinating new option: a walking tour though one of the most successful entrepreneurial business districts ever launched in Hawaii — the red light district of World War II. Civil Beat.


A captain in the Hawaii County Fire Department is under investigation by the chief for criticizing the department in public. Fire Chief Darren Rosario sent a letter Wednesday to Capt. Sean Sommers, telling him he was being investigated on administrative charges that he violated the department’s rules when he criticized the department and fire chief in a March 19 interview on Hawaii News Now. West Hawaii Today.


The head of Hawaii's largest public employee union sharply criticized Sen. Roz Baker for "bullying" rank-and-file union members who testified earlier this month against a controversial bill to privatize three Maui County hospitals. The Hawaii Government Employees Association said Baker treated members rudely as they gave testimony March 19 before the Senate Committees on Health and Commerce and Consumer Protection opposing a bill to authorize a private entity to assume control of the state-owned Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital. Star-Advertiser.

In an effort to better connect residents with county services, the County of Maui is now offering a free mobile phone app that would allow people to alert officials to non-emergency problems and then monitor how officials correct those issues, according to a county news release sent out on Mar. 30. MauiTime.

A state contract to improve and expand the Maui Veterans Cemetery has been awarded to F&H Construction, which submitted a low bid of nearly $4.7 million. Maui News.


The County of Kauai said visitor accommodation providers who were faced with having to close because they lacked proper permits can continue their operations. Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. and planning officials met Monday to review the situation. Garden Island.

At the end of a recent corporate board meeting of the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, one thing was clear: Kauai is likely now in the strongest position of all the regions as it enters the 2016 fiscal year on July 1. Garden Island.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Health care top Hawaii concern as doctors flee state, tight budgets ahead, HECO asks to cut customer rebates, Honolulu airport seeks free WiFi, Waikiki sand returns, property owners face tax, more politics and government news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii Health Systems Corp.
Leahi Hospital, courtesy Hawaii Health Systems Corp.
Hawaii's doctor shortage jumped 20 percent over the past year as more physicians left the field amid a growing demand for medical services. New estimates on physician supply and demand peg the current shortage at 890, and that's expected to jump as high as 1,500 by 2020, according to the latest figures from the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine's Area Health Education Center. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers and the state’s newly elected governor are heading into the upcoming legislative session with a tight budget and a slew of looming priorities that include dealing with struggling hospitals, medical marijuana and a creeping lava flow. Associated Press.

With pronouncements already from Gov. David Ige that excessive government spending must stop and the state must live within its means, lawmakers are taking the cue and preparing for a low-key 2015 legislative session. Star-Advertiser.

2015 Legislature — Time To Stop the Financial Bleeding. Lawmakers are expected to focus on major fiscal problems facing the state with less attention to hot-button political issues. Civil Beat.

Officials from the state’s public health care provider, Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, say they will likely need more than a quarter of a billion dollars in taxpayer money over the next two fiscal years to fully offset potentially crippling debts, ranging from new federal changes to collective bargaining raises. Some officials, however, say they are not convinced the request should be approved. Garden Island.

Time and the tenacity of Maui County's state lawmakers will tell if this year's legislative session will be the one that takes Maui Memorial Medical Center off life support. Maui News.

The new chairmen of the House and Senate agriculture committees are both from the Big Island, but their stance on genetically modified crops couldn’t be more different. The strong positions Senate Agriculture Chairman Russell Ruderman and House Agriculture Chairman Clift Tsuji have taken on each side of GMO laws almost guarantee a stalemate on issues such as state pre-emption of county farming regulations, counties’ home-rule rights and just about anything dealing with GMO limits or labeling when the state Legislature convenes for its regular session Wednesday. West Hawaii Today.

In the wake of recent federal court rulings that Hawaii counties don’t have the authority to regulate farming, it is now up to legislators to address growing concerns about pesticides. Civil Beat.

A nonprofit foundation headed by state Sen. Sam Slom had its tax-exempt status revoked last year by the Internal Revenue Service for failing to file its federal tax return for three years. Slom, the sole Republican in the state Senate and a staunch opponent of new taxes, is president of the Small Business Hawaii Entrepreneurial Education Foundation. Star-Advertiser.

Fresh from winning a new four-year term, incumbent West Hawaii Sen. Josh Green is sitting on the fattest war chest of any state or local candidate in the 2014 election. Green, D-Kona, Ka‘u, ended the election season with $493,438 left over, according to new statistics posted Thursday to the state Campaign Spending Commission website, Coming in second was Gov. David Ige, with $435,030. Some 298 candidates sought office in 2014, according to the commission. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaiian Electric Co. is expected to file a proposal Tuesday with the state Public Utilities Commission to cut nearly in half the net energy metering reimbursements offered to customers with rooftop photovoltaic systems. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Gas, the state's only regulated gas utility, is looking to be the sole provider of liquefied natural gas to help the state reach renewable-energy goals. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii temporarily suspended its online Medicaid eligibility system over the weekend as health center workers complain it's fraught with problems. The system known as Kolea is set to cost taxpayers as much as $144 million. It launched in October 2013. Associated Press.

NASA has selected Hawaii as the preferred site to establish the world's first laser communications ground terminal, which could spur major economic activity in the state, translating to job creation and revenues, according to public documents obtained by Pacific Business News.

One trend of Hawaii’s tourism industry over past year has been a growing number of visitors from China. While the numbers are still small compared to Japan, they’re increasing. And China’s government is taking a new step that may improve the travel experience for all parties concerned. Hawaii Public Radio.


Passengers waiting for flights at Hawaii's largest airport could have access to free Wi-Fi by the end of the year — if state transportation officials can make it happen. Star-Advertiser.

A plan to get Waikiki property owners to pool their resources to help pay for maintenance and restoration of Oahu's most iconic beach cleared its first hurdle before the City Council Zoning Committee on Thursday. Star-Advertiser.

Not that long ago the popular section of Kuhio Beach known for beach boys and surfing lessons was very low on sand. The shore was so stripped and bare, you could see blocks and boulders. But the shoreline has expanded in what seems like an overnight growth spurt. Hawaii News Now.

Opening statements were scheduled for Tuesday in the state civil trial of Katherine Kealoha, a deputy city prosecutor and wife of Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha. Star-Advertiser.

The U.S. government is modifying terms of a plea deal reached with a shipping company for spilling 233,000 gallons of molasses into Honolulu Harbor. The judge who accepted the guilty plea from Matson Terminals Inc. in October was concerned that the $1 million the company agreed to pay is higher than the maximum fines allowed by law. Associated Press.

Opinion: Urban Hawaii: When the World Is Your Neighbor, Do You Ever Meet? When a big, fancy tower is built it creates a different sort of “neighborhood” from the ones many of us grew up in. Civil Beat.


Parker Ranch and NextEra Energy Resources, a subsidiary of the company buying Hawaiian Electric Industries, reached a deal for the development of wind farms on its land. Tribune-Herald.

Kua Bay should have lifeguards, many say. West Hawaii Today.

More than 50 friends, patients and colleagues of Dr. Frederick Nitta lined Kamehameha Avenue in Hilo on Saturday, holding up signs and showing their support for the embattled obstetrician. The doctor has practiced in Hilo for about 20 years and helped deliver “tens of thousands” of East Hawaii’s newborns in that time, by his own estimation. Now, he stands accused of overbilling Medicaid to the tune of about $1.2 million and faces the possibility of having to shut his practice down after the federal health care program stopped reimbursing him in September. Tribune-Herald.

Hilo Hattie, one of Hawaii’s largest retailers of Hawaiian fashions and goods, closed its nearly 30-year-old Kailua-Kona store and plans to pursue a new direction — expanding and broadening cultural experiences. West Hawaii Today.


Maui now has a voice for cyclists and pedestrians seeking a safe and fun place to bike and walk. The Maui Bicycling League, a nonprofit Maui chapter of the Hawai‘i Bicycling League, officially formed on Dec. 19, 2014, will spearhead efforts to put more bike lanes on Maui roads. Maui Now.

Haleakala National Park will be hosting two community meetings for public review and comment on a draft of the park's foundation document, which defines the park's core mission and significance, its most important resources and values and interpretive themes. Maui News.


A federal court ruling in Washington state is being eyed as a victory and potential game changer by those battling to stop Hawaii Dairy Farms’ proposed dairy on Kauai’s south side, including the Friends of Mahaulepu group. HDF, however, doesn’t see a connection. Garden Island.

The Kauai Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol is experiencing a drop in numbers and volunteers who left are saying its ability to carry out emergency services and tsunami watch missions is in peril.  Garden Island.