Showing posts with label Kilauea. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kilauea. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Kilauea volcano hurls rocks, restraining order issued in House race, state retirement plan sues over Maui hospital deal, dairy farm selling to rival, Hanabusa congressional coronation, state recommends hepatitis vaccine, residents sue over geothermal gas leak, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
People view lava flow, courtesy Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park reported Tuesday that an explosion at Kilauea Volcano’s summit Saturday night hurled molten and solid rock onto the rim of Halemaumau Crater and destroyed the power system for a scientific instrument used in volcano research. Star-Advertiser.

An explosive event occurred at the summit of Kilauea volcano at 10:02 p.m., HST, on Saturday night. Big Island Video News.

courtesy Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
The area around the former Halema‘uma‘u overlook has been closed -- due to an explosion at the crater Saturday night. KITV.

Tour operators say they're seeing a spike in customers ever since lava from Kilauea started to drip into the ocean at Kamokuna. Hawaii News Now.

The state repeated its recommendation Tuesday that all Hawaii residents get vaccinated against hepatitis A as the food industry took steps to prevent more outbreaks among workers. Star-Advertiser.

Democracy is far from free, and so is the cost of the election. “We estimate that it comes to a little bit more than $1.5 million per election,” said chief election officer Scott Nago. KHON2.

Tulsi Gabbard was a virtual unknown four years ago when she ran for the U.S. House of Representatives. Political analysts say they doubt that as a political newcomer Shay Chan Hodges poses a serious threat to Gabbard’s re-election bid. Star-Advertiser.

Congressional Candidates Try To Stave Off A Hanabusa ‘Coronation’. The Democratic race to represent urban Oahu looks like a shoo-in for Colleen Hanabusa, but the list of candidates is long. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s largest public pension fund suffered the brunt of three global shocks during the last 12 months to once again fall far short of the returns it needs to meet its financial obligations. Star-Advertiser.

A Hawaii agency is concerned with the way a $150 million state clean-energy loan program may be doling out funding for projects, Pacific Business News has learned.

Some taxpayer services will be limited Thursday and Friday while the state Department of Taxation transfers data to a new computer system as part of its Tax System Modernization program. Services that require access to the current computer system will be affected. Star-Advertiser.

An effort to protect Hawaii’s native plants is proving effective, as about 35 percent more state species have been placed on a global list of threatened species since last year. Associated Press.


A state judge has issued a temporary restraining order against a Republican House candidate, requiring him to stay away from state Rep. Della Au Belatti. Hawaii News Now.

Just days before Saturday’s primary election, both Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and his challenger former U.S. Rep. Charles Djou are turning up the heat in television and radio commercials and other campaign material — attacking each other rather than touting their own attributes. Star-Advertiser.

When it comes to the unfinished rail line, Kirk Caldwell and Peter Carlisle agree on many things, including how much it will cost to complete the route to Ala Moana Center: $1.5 billion. Civil Beat.

More than half of O’ahu voters are expected to mail in their absentee ballots or do early walk-in voting before this Saturday’s primary election.   That means the stakes are still high in the race for Honolulu Mayor. Hawaii Public Radio.

Honolulu’s mayor and City Council members currently are allowed to serve two consecutive four-year terms, while the city prosecutor has no term limits. That could change come November should voters elect to give mayors and Council members an additional term and limit the prosecutor to just three terms. Civil Beat.

For nearly a year now, classrooms used by the College of Education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa have been shut down. KHON2.

Councilman says longtime contraflow lane draws concerns, prompts need for change. KHON2.

A state judge Tuesday dismissed the gambling promotion and racketeering case against three men who distributed or owned 77 arcade machines that Honolulu police seized in 2012 and that a federal judge had deemed as gambling devices. Star-Advertiser.


Richard Ha, one of the first people selected to open medical marijuana dispensaries on Hawaii Island, gave the community on Tuesday a glimpse into his company’s budding plans. Tribune-Herald.

A class action lawsuit was filed last week against Puna Geothermal Venture over its gas release two years ago during Tropical Storm Iselle. Tribune-Herald.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday that it had awarded a $750,000 grant to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to develop a network of low-cost air pollution sensors for detecting volcanic smog on the Big Island of Hawaii. Pacific Business News.

For at least a decade, Hawi dairy farmer Ed Boteilho has pushed the state for incentives to help keep local dairies alive. This time, he’s really leaving. West Hawaii Today.

Community, legislators respond to Donald Trump labeling Philippines ‘terrorist nation’ West Hawaii Today.


A super PAC of Maui time-share owners has spent more than $43,000 to support Keith Regan, who is running for one of the two open Maui County Council seats, according to campaign spending reports filed last week. Maui News.

When East Maui, Lanai and Molokai voters head to the primary polls to cast their ballots for the 13th District representative in the state House of Representatives, they'll have two Democratic candidates to choose from. Maui News.

The Hawaii Employees’ Retirement System filed a lawsuit in Oahu Circuit Court on Tuesday to block a law providing severance benefits to roughly 1,500 Maui County hospital workers from taking effect. Star-Advertiser.

The state Employees’ Retirement System filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the state of Hawaii and the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation to stop the implementation of a law that offers special retirement benefits to certain state employees. Civil Beat.

Maui Land & Pineapple Co. secured a $27 million revolving credit line with First Hawaiian Bank on Thursday to be used to refinance a loan with Wells Fargo Bank that was to come due Aug. 1, state Public Utilities Commission documents show. Maui News.


Dozens of Lihue residents have signed a petition against a proposed project aimed at adding a bicycle boulevard on roadways near their residence. Garden Island.

The Kokee Air Force Base is operating in blackout conditions to avoid grounding anymore endangered seabirds after receiving a June 28 letter threatening a lawsuit. Garden Island.

A change in Hawaii’s care delivery system is in the works and it’s a fundamental departure from the current fee-for-service model, which reimburses doctors based on visit numbers and service types. Garden Island.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Top APEC stories of the day, everyone wants to live Hawaii, state, UPW strike deal, military gets cool reception on Big Island, wind farm coming to Maui, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

APEC courtesy photo

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit moves to higher levels today, with top Obama administration officials here to lay the groundwork for this weekend's Leaders' Meeting and with the traffic-stopping arrivals of major heads of state. Star-Advertiser.

President Barack Obama launches a busy weekend in Honolulu with a series of bilateral talks aimed at strengthening U.S. ties to the Asia-Pacific region and stimulating domestic job growth through economic partnerships in the region. Star-Advertiser.

The White House released details today about President Obama's schedule during his APEC Hawaii trip. KHON2.

The Obama administration reiterated on Wednesday that APEC is a cornerstone of the president's economic goals. Civil Beat.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is in Hawaii where she is attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. Associated Press.

Chinese president Hu Jintao is expected to arrive today at Joint Base Pearl Harbor. Hawaii News Now.

Asia's economy has improved, but continued sluggishness in the U.S. labor market as well as Europe's financial woes threaten recovery — which could mean serious implications for Hawaii tourism. Star-Advertiser.

Asian-Pacific leaders gathering in warm, sunny Honolulu this week will be searching for ways to kickstart faster growth through freer trade, moving on from the gloom over European debt that prevailed days earlier at the G20 summit in chilly Cannes. Associated Press.

Eyes on whether APEC leaders will don aloha shirts. Associated Press.

A first-ever forum bringing together local and foreign businesses during APEC Leaders Week was launched today. Hawaii Public Radio.

A sampling of graduate students at Hawaii Pacific University on the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference here this week drew responses that split all over the lot—and thus seemed to reflect a cross-section of opinion throughout Honolulu. Civil Beat.

Perhaps the greatest benefit of the APEC summit — at least from the point of view of supporters — is that it could snuff out once and for all the notion that Hawaii is a bad place to do business. Civil Beat.

Many more visitors could begin traveling to Hawaii if the U.S. joined a Pacific free trade bloc, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said Wednesday .Associated Press.

Some 48 agencies charged with ensuring the security and safety of U.S. and foreign dignitaries in Hawaii for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference have centralized their operations in one major Multi-Agency Communications Center otherwise known as MACC. Hawaii Reporter.


Hawaii has knocked California from the top of a poll that asks Americans where they would most like to live, not counting their current state. Pacific Business News.

The United Public Workers union representing some 8,500 state and county blue-collar workers has reached a tentative agreement with the government negotiators on a two-year contract. Star-Advertiser.

A 6-month-old Hawaii law continued to constrain the flow of foreclosures statewide in October, as a relative trickle of cases were initiated mainly through Circuit Court instead of a nonjudicial process through which most cases had been pouring prior to the law's enactment. Star-Advertiser.


Despite Expected Influx of Prostitutes for APEC, No Arrests — So Far. Civil Beat.

Waikiki hotels are filling up with APEC attendees, but there is not yet any measurable bump in statewide visitor arrivals, nor is it yet clear how many Waikiki restaurants or shops will be helped or hurt by the event's special security-related disruptions. Hawaii News Now.

Motorists can expect delays on the H-1 freeway and Nimitz Highway beginning today as world leaders begin to arrive for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and roads are closed for their motorcades. Star-Advertiser.

This week's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and all the associated road closures are having a big impact on businesses around the Hawaii Convention Center. KITV4.

The U.S. Army is not welcome in Hawaii, some Big Island residents told military representatives Wednesday evening. West Hawaii Today.

Rat lungworm is an increasingly common, potentially fatal disease that's understudied, hard to diagnose and even harder to treat.  Tribune-Herald.

Hooulu Community Farmers Market, held weekly at Keauhou Beach Resort, has been shut down after hotel management received word the market may be in violation of county zoning and special management area permitted uses. West Hawaii Today.

For the last four years, Hawaii Kai resident Chuck Denny has been intrepid in his effort to capture photos of Hawaii Island lava fields that almost no one else has seen. Hawaii Reporter.


The Maui Planning Commission unanimously approved permits Tuesday for Auwahi Wind Energy to build and operate eight 428-foot-tall wind turbines on Ulupalakua Ranch land. Maui News.

Maui's hotels were two-thirds full in September, not unusual for one of the dullest months of the year in the visitor industry, but hotel operators were able to boost their rack rates by more than $15 a night. Maui News.


When the Kaua‘i County Council last year passed Ordinance 904 — allowing certain owners of transient vacation rentals on ag lands to apply for a permit — those opposed to the bill feared the new law would allow hundreds of new tourist units on lands zoned agriculture. Garden Island.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Groups eye Hawaii geothermal potential, Obama's mother Dunham gets museum exhibit, Japanese-American WWII vets honored, Honolulu rapid transit takes road show, domestic violence on Maui and more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Kilauea Volcano (c) 2011 All Hawaii News
Some officials think the Big Island could become the next Brunei, a small nation on the island of Borneo made extremely wealthy by its energy exports. West Hawaii Today.

Millions of dollars could be at stake in an emerging dispute over who owns the mineral rights to Hawaiian home lands that are being considered for the development of geothermal energy. Civil Beat.

The brave scientists at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory have shared another round of compelling volcano video. Big Island Video News.

Should native Hawaiians living on Hawaiian Home Lands, or state lands set aside for native Hawaiians with a 50 percent or higher blood quantum, pay a lower property tax rate than other Hawaii residents? Hawaii Reporter.

Sunday's service at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl recognized four World War II units, which were segregated for Japanese-Americans during the war: the 100th Infantry Battalion, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the Military Intelligence Service and the 1,399th Engineer Construction Battalion. Star-Advertiser.

In a disturbing parallel, China in 2011 seems to have started down the same warpath that led Japan to attack the United States at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. Civil Beat.

Years of economic downturn and the resulting cuts to invasive species spending are having consequences in Hawaii. Associated Press.

Class requirements are increasing for Hawaii’s high school students. Hawaii Public Radio.


President Barack Obama's mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, is recognized for her work as an anthropologist in Indonesia. KITV4.

Honolulu Seawater Air Conditioning LLC on Friday signed a 55-year agreement to lease a 30,000 square-foot parcel in Kakaako from Kamehameha Schools, where it will build and operate a pumping station and exchange facility for a seawater air conditioning cooling system that will serve downtown Honolulu. Pacific Business News.

A series of meetings across Oahu are planned to provide the public with information about Honolulu's planned rail line. KITV4.

Residents will have a chance to find out more about Honolulu's planned rail line starting Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.

Archaeological excavations along the planned rail route in Kalihi, downtown and Kaakako will prompt lane closures and detours — and might last from six to 10 months. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Police Load Up on Taser Ammo, Pepper Spray, Bean Bags for APEC. Civil Beat.

Plan to rezone an area in Kapahulu creating concern. KHON2.


Cattle ranchers, horse breeders and even prospective first-time farmers came here Sunday afternoon to inspect Hawaii County jewels that have gone unpolished for 17 years. Tribune-Herald.

On a sunny day in the near-shore waters off of the North Kohala Coast in Kawaiahae on February 15 of this year, Brooke Landt was conducting a commercial dive when she noticed another diver harvesting aquarium fish species. Hawaii Independent.

Imagine walking in the footsteps of King Kamehameha I's most elite warriors along the Waikoloa Stream taking in some of old Hawaii whilst getting some good exercise in a relaxing Waimea setting. West Hawaii Today.


The killing of a Santa Cruz, Calif., woman on Maui this month was the second domestic violence homicide in the state this year, with both involving tourists, domestic violence task force members say. Maui News.

While use is up by about 25 percent at Maui's only domestic violence shelter, the nonprofit agency running the shelter is struggling to maintain services with a nearly 41 percent cut in state funding. Maui News.


The Kaua‘i County Council had to suspend its consideration of a request to spend $75,000 on outside legal counsel for its case against Michael Sheehan regarding alleged permit violations in the operation of his Hanalei boatyard. Garden Island.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Hawaii has no worker safety regs for ziplines, Big Island fatality reveals, Ethics Commission clears lawmakers to accept APEC freebies, $29M park coming to Oahu's Sand Island, council kills impact fees again, ecotour operators feted, Kilauea on the move, more Hawaii news

courtesy USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

Kilauea's eastern fault zone ruptured near Pu'u 'O'o for the third time this year, sending a flow of lava at least 11/2 miles to the east. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission agreed Wednesday that lawmakers could accept free tickets to some APEC-related events in November. Civil Beat.

Hawaii State Ethics Commission Executive Director Les Kondo says he doesn't get the "big brouhaha" over his position that members of legislative task forces are state employees — and subject to the Ethics Code. Civil Beat.

Lawmakers Investigate Prison Complaints. Civil Beat.

Hawaii lawmakers earlier this year declined to increase tax credits for television and film productions filming in the islands, but the proposal is still alive for the 2012 legislative session. Hawaii Reporter.

The Task Force on Public Charter School Governance approved a draft plan today that will be used as the basis to revamp the system. Hawaii Public Radio.

Fourteen Hawaii tourism companies have earned recognition as the state's first Certified Ecotour Operators through a standards program developed by the Hawaii Ecotourism Association to improve and protect the destination. Star-Advertiser.

A date has been set for the awarding of the Congressional Gold Medal to Japanese-American Veterans of World War II. Hawaii News Now.

Former Hawaii Republican Party Chair John Carroll announced today that he will run for the U.S. Senate, for the seat to be vacated by Senator Daniel Akaka. Hawaii Independent.


Canoe pavilions, a cafe, concession stands, restrooms, a marina and an ocean activity center are among the renovations the state is proposing in a $29 million master plan for Sand Island. Star-Advertiser.

A financially struggling slaughterhouse on Oahu, indebted to taxpayers, has been further imperiled after the two largest kama­aina supermarket chains decided to quit selling pork from hogs shipped live to Hawaii from the mainland. Star-Advertiser.

The leading opponents of Honolulu’s $5.3 billion elevated rail system are in need of some cash in their efforts to halt construction of the project. Pacific Business News.

West Oahu has waited 35 years for a new University of Hawaii campus, and soon that wait will be over. KHON2.


An impact fee would create too much impact for Hawaii County lawmakers to accept. Tribune-Herald.

Impact fees, which have been considered by the Hawaii County Council for decades, have been rejected again. West Hawaii Today.

One man was killed and a second was fighting for his life after a 30-foot zip line tower in Paukaa collapsed Wednesday. Tribune-Herald.

Zip line operations have no workplace safety regulations in Hawaii, unlike other amusement rides. KITV4.

Hawaii County police on Wednesday received $140,000 in forfeiture money for the department's work more than five years ago on a federal methamphetamine trafficking investigation. West Hawaii Today.

Alahou Clean and Sober Executive Director Sandra McCoy is facing charges of assaulting an officer, disorderly conduct and possessing a controlled substance stemming from a July altercation in Mississippi. West Hawaii Today.


Although state housing official Karen Seddon promised two weeks ago to decrease rents at a troubled Maui housing project, her agency now has ordered rent increases. Hawaii Reporter.

A Maui businessman confirmed Tuesday that he is proposing to develop a bottled-water plant in rural Waihee, adding that the project is part of a larger plan to acquire 490 acres in the area and preserve most of it from residential development. Maui News.

Maui County is looking for a contractor to design and install a midsized, wind-powered turbine to generate as much as 100 kilowatts of power for a water-pumping station in Kaupakulua. Maui News.

County officials are reminding the public that an increase in the state motor vehicle weight tax and registration fee was approved by the 2011 State Legislature. Garden Island.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Hawaii tourism chief up for review, Fernanda no threat, fee delay costs roads $19.2M, Big Island seeks fire chief, military contractor settles Kauai sexual harassment suit, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Kilauea crowd (c) 2011 All Hawaii News
Scientists on the Big Island expect to see more action from Kilauea volcano in the coming days. Hawaii News Now.

A delay in implementing increases in registration fees and vehicle weight taxes means $19.2 million will not be collected this year for highway maintenance and repairs. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii Labor Relations Board ruled Thursday that a controversial letter from Gov. Neil Abercrombie to the board was not an unlawful attempt to influence the board's decisions in a dispute between the teachers union and the state. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority is due to discuss the performance of the agency's CEO next week. Associated Press.

Waikiki aquarium unveiled its new Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibit. KHON2.

Fernanda, which entered the Central Pacific Thursday as a strong tropical storm, is "falling apart" faster than expected, forecasters say. Star-Advertiser.

U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka was on Maui on Wednesday as chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs to listen to ideas on how to create parity for indigenous people living across America, with a focus on Hawaii. Maui News.

One of Kauai's largest employers has settled a federal sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit by two firefighters. Associated Press.

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) heard a warning today that the company it chose to build the train is headed for financial ruin, but the warning came from the company that has so far been rejected by the city. Hawaii News Now.

A Big Island businessman has donated $500,000 to help protect native forests in Ka'u and South Kona. Tribune-Herald.

Five finalists are on the short list to succeed Hawaii County Fire Chief Darryl Oliveira, who retired Aug. 1. West Hawaii Today.

The University of Hawaii at Hilo rested its case for the Thirty Meter Telescope on Thursday in the ongoing contested case hearing. Tribune-Herald.

Val T. Iwashita, who has been headmaster at Iolani School for 17 years, said Thursday that he will step down at the end of the 2011-2012 school year. Pacific Business News.

After starting the year showing good gains, occupancy rates at Maui resorts tailed off as the months wore by, and by the end of June the overall occupancy rate for the first half of the year was 72.1 percent, still better than the depressed 68.2 percent of January to June 2010. Maui News.

Hundreds of people lined West Hawaii roadways Thursday to pay tribute to Waimea Marine Lance Cpl. Christopher Camero, who gave the ultimate sacrifice. West Hawaii Today.

Honolulu police are permanently removing their website that featured photos of people arrested for driving under the influence. Associated Press.

Thirty years ago, a group of Hawaiian Language students at U-H Manoa discovered a water system behind the dormitories on Dole Street. Hawaii Public Radio.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Pele awakes: Kilauea Volcano gives Hawaii visitors a show with new eruption

Adrian Boone /Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park   
Media release:

Hawaii National Park, HI Kīlauea’s new eruption action from Puu Ō‘ō vent’s west flank and the glow from Halema‘uma‘u crater continue to draw visitors to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and while rangers prepare for a busy weekend, multi-agency fire managers work on extinguishing fires sparked by the new flows.

Park-goers on Thursday evening enjoyed views of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō’s west flank eruption from several spots. Rosy clouds of gas and ash were visible from the bottom of Chain of Craters Road looking up towards Puu Ō‘ō, where nearly 600 visitors gathered. At Puu Huluhulu, hundreds of flashlight-wielding hikers made the two-and-a-half mile round-trip trek and were treated to a rare “double header” of lava activity: a deep orange glow from Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō’s advancing flows about six miles away, plus a reddish glow from Kīlauea’s summit eruption at Halemaumau crater about 12 miles away. Newly installed reflectors mark the trail, but hikers must have flashlights, drinking water and wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes.

Spectators at Jaggar Museum overlook got the reverse view, a steady glow emitting from Halemaumau Crater, with views of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō’s new activity to the southeast.

Park rangers made several flights over the new flow, and estimate it has added approximately 615 acres of new lava.

“It’s an exciting and memorable time to visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and we’re expecting a busy weekend,” said Talmadge Magno, Chief Ranger and Incident Commander. “Safety is our first priority, but because of careful monitoring of fire smoke and SO2 levels, we were able to reopen Chain of Craters Road on Thursday, and viewing opportunities are safe and can be superb, weather permitting.”

Park rangers will be stationed at Pu‘u Huluhulu until 8:30 p.m. and at Jaggar Museum until 9 p.m. through the weekend. And while rangers prepare for an influx of visitors, fire crews have been working on putting out blazes and monitoring conditions.

A wildfire, estimated at six acres total, was ignited by lava and burned through forests of native Hawaiian and alien vegetation. A small blaze on the southern branch of the flow was nearly contained Friday afternoon. Seven firefighters were flown in by helicopter, and used hand tools, chainsaws and water from 80-gallon bladder bags to suppress the fire.

Meanwhile, a multi-agency emergency response team mobilized at the Visitor Emergency Operations Center in the park, keeping close tabs on current eruption conditions and another fire, estimated at five acres, at the north stretch of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō’s flow.

Approximately 30 personnel from agencies including Hawai‘i County Civil Defense, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park’s Fire Management team, U.S. Geological Survey, Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife, and Whiskeytown National Park were called into action.

“Right now we’re not sending any crews into the fire to the north but will watch it closely. Conditions are too hazardous,” said Fire Management Officer Joe Molhoek. In addition to methane explosions and tree snags, giant earth cracks make the ground treacherous.

The fires, and the recent flows, are entirely within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. No residential areas are currently threatened. 

Most areas within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park are open. Closures due to potentially hazardous emissions include Nāulu Trail, Nāpau Trail to Nāpau Crater, and
Crater Rim Drive past Jaggar Museum (unchanged since March 2008).

Friday, March 25, 2011

Dengue fever in Pearl City, Big Island gets big bus, tsunami has a price tag, Honolulu councilman has transit conflict, hard to fire state workers, budget hole deepens, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
National Park Service firefighters have spent the week trying to prevent a wildfire ignited by Kilauea volcano from spreading through a protected rain forest inhabited by endangered Hawaiian plants and animals. Star-Advertiser.

Four people who live in the same Pearl City neighborhood are the first known Hawaii cases of locally contracted dengue fever since a 2001 outbreak in which 153 people were infected with the mosquito-borne viral illness, health officials announced yesterday. Star-Advertiser.

Data from the March 11 tsunami has given scientists more confidence in research predicting what coastal land around Hawaii will be inundated by tsunamis in the future.Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii disaster response officials are estimating the state suffered damages exceeding $30 million during this month's tsunami, a figure that could lead to the federal government providing money for repairs. Associated Press.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie is hoping to get federal aid for some of the $30.6 million of damages that occurred to Hawaii homes, businesses and property as a tsunami swept through the state on March 11. Hawaii Reporter.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie Thursday formally requested an Administrative Disaster Declaration from the U.S. Small Business Administration to help Hawai‘i Island homeowners, renters, businesses and nonprofits affected by the tsunami that swept across the state on March 11, states a release from the governor’s office. Associated Press.

A 200-pound sea turtle was rescued near Kmart, and reef fish were spotted swimming in a pond at a Kahului parking lot, days after the Japan tsunami hit Maui earlier this month. Maui News.

Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had yet to identify the radiation that arrived here Monday from Japan, a state health official said yesterday he expects the isotopes that have been detected on the West Coast to be seen in Hawaii, and in similarly low levels. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii hotels were three-fourths full during the week ending March 19, and average room rates were generally higher compared to a year ago, according to Smith Travel Research and Hospitality Advisors. Pacific Business News.

The U.S. Department of Transportation will subsidize air service to and from Kalauapa, and will select an air carrier to service the remote community following a competitive bid process, Senator Daniel K. Inouye, Senator Daniel K. Akaka and Congresswoman Mazie K. Hirono announced today. Maui News.

The Abercrombie administration, not waiting for the state Council on Revenues to update its forecast, has put the projected two-year budget deficit at $1.3 billion. Star-Advertiser.

The state's top budget official has raised his estimate of the budget hole lawmakers will have to fill: The total shortfall is now $1.3 billion — more than one-third larger than previous estimates. Civil Beat.

Gambling seemed all but dead at the legislature this session. But the odds are suddenly better that some form of poker could get to the Governor’s desk. Hawaii Public Radio.

It's as difficult to fire someone from Hawaii state government as it is from the federal government, Civil Beat has learned. Civil Beat.

Hawaii senators and the state Department of Education are pushing a bill that delays a requirement for state schools to have a full 180-instructional day year until 2014. Associated Press.

Honolulu City Council Chairman Nestor Garcia told KITV4 News Thursday that he will begin officially declaring that he has a conflict of interest on the rail transit issue when it comes up for votes in the council. KITV4.

Hawaii County's new double-decker bus has arrived, and county staff is already reporting problems navigating the 14-foot-tall monstrosity around the Mass Transit Department's baseyard in Hilo. West Hawaii Today.

The Honolulu Police Department said it's seeing far fewer people applying to be police officers compared to the last time it accepted online applications in the fall. As a result, H.P.D. will extend the application period for another week. KITV4.

Cash-strapped Hawaii County plans to save $40,000 a year by taking bread literally from the mouths of its workers.Tribune-Herald.

On Thursday the first commercial wind project on Oahu was dedicated in Kahuku on the island’s North Shore, making renewable energy a reality. KHON2.

Aina Lea developers are hoping the third time might be the charm for their proposed 1,060-acre South Kohala residential and commercial development proposal. West Hawaii Today.

Voter turnout for Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative’s 2011 board of directors election was lower this year than last year despite its continued efforts to expand the methods in which voters could cast a ballot. Garden Island.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Hawaii lawmakers grapple revenue shortfall, allow themselves freebies, look at decriminializing marijuana, Maui reconsiders furloughs, Honolulu has HART, Kilauea continues show, more news

Hawaii Legislature
State House and Senate lawmakers advanced a menu of tax options yesterday to generate revenue to help balance the budget. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers passed a wide array of measures Tuesday night to tax pensions, reduce tax exemptions and raise liquor fees to help solve the state's big budget deficit. KITV4.

Hawaii legislators are passing a wide selection of measures to tax pensions, trim tax exemptions and raise liquor levies to help narrow the state's big budget deficit. Associated Press.

Among hundreds of measures approved by the Hawaii State Senate today were proposals to decriminalize marijuana, classify some peeping toms as sex offenders, amend the procurement code and re-open Kulani Prison on the Big Island. Hawaii Reporter.

The state Senate has kept alive a bill to scoop an unspecified amount from the general excise tax surcharge on Oahu for rail projects, while the House advanced a proposal to cap the amount of money from the hotel room tax that goes to counties. Star-Advertiser.

A bill that would allow lawmakers and other state employees to accept free tickets to fundraising events for charities is moving forward at the Legislature.Star-Advertiser.

The state Legislature has reached the first important deadline of the session, with hundreds of bills receiving third readings in the House and Senate. KITV4.

The head of the House Finance Committee will ignore many of the new initiatives proposed by Gov. Neil Abercrombie in producing what he says is a lean budget relying on a combination of tax increases and budget cuts. Hawaii Reporter.

The latest eruption at Kilauea Volcano has a new working name. Associated Press.

A new eruption near Pu'u 'o'o Crater on the Big Island that began March 5 has led to a dramatic increase in sulfur dioxide gas, one of two main ingredients in vog. KHON2.

Board of Water Supply: Oahu below national average for number of water main breaks. Hawaii News Now.

It will cost $21.1 million to run the new Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transit (HART) in its first year, according to documents posted to the city's new budget website. Civil Beat.

Carlisle talks about rail, budget woes. Pacific Business News.

While furloughs were designed to dish out less money in regular pay, the county council questioned whether ensuing overtime required may have cost the county more than a normal work schedule. Garden Island.

The state judiciary is expanding a unique probation program to Hilo after it helped reduce recidivism rates on Oahu and produced similar results in Maui County. Associated Press.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie promised residents of an Iwilei public housing complex yesterday that he would take quick action to get them the hot water service they have not had for years. Star-Advertiser.

Hilton and hotel workers union celebrate new deal. Hawaii News Now.

Maui Electric Co. union members continued picketing Monday afternoon despite learning that their union had finalized a tentative agreement with their parent company, Hawaiian Electric Industries, a Maui union official said. Maui News.

Striking Hawaii Electric Light Co. workers picketed Monday amid reports that a tentative settlement had been reached to end the 4-day-old walkout. Tribune-Herald.

Day-to-day operations are running smoothly and reliable electric service is continuing on the Big Island, despite the 240 Hawaii Electric Light Co. employees on a strike and continuing negotiations, said a company official Monday. West Hawaii Today.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Hawaii mayors want to end furloughs, Mauna Kea telescope hearings slated, Kileaua quiets, county governments reorganize, biofuels spotlighted, unemployment lapses, more news

The Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii says a Pearl Harbor submarine wharf has been upgraded to accommodate the Navy's new Virginia-class submarines. Associated Press.

Hawaii Mayors Want To End Furloughs. KITV4.

Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle wants to eliminate public worker furloughs in his city. Associated Press.

The following furlough days and holidays will affect certain state or county services in December. Star-Advertiser.

The state plans to hold two public hearings this week on a proposal to build the world's largest telescope at Mauna Kea's summit. KITV4.

Outgoing DLNR director says parks, harbors and trails are in disrepair because the state won't commit the needed funding. Civil Beat.

Across the country cities are setting aside money they don't have to replace perfectly good traffic signs. KHON2.

Hawaii has applied to be the 32nd state to borrow from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration to pay state unemployment benefits. Hawaii Reporter.

Yesterday was the first day that people who otherwise would have received extended unemployment checks went empty-handed. Star-Advertiser.

Almost 17,000 Hawaii residents receive regular unemployment benefits up to 26 weeks. Another 11,000 are on extended benefits that go up to a maximum 73 weeks. Hawaii News Now.

Former state House Minority Leader Lynn Finnegan, who was the Republican lieutenant governor nominee, is the new executive director of the Hawaii Charter Schools Network. Star-Advertiser.

Two state senators are visiting Kauai farmers to hear about their problems and concerns in preparation for next month's legislative session. Associated Press.

Sometime this week, the U.S. Senate is expected to vote on a bill that could radically change how the federal government--in fact, how the world -- handles food safety. Big Island Weekly.

Biofuels: Boom or Bust? The future of energy in Hawai‘i. Honolulu Weekly.

Recently re-elected Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. drew a standing ovation at his inauguration ceremony, after a speech that revealed many grand plans for the island in the next 10 years. Garden Island.

Another day and another set of appointments for top Maui County positions from Mayor-elect Alan Arakawa. Maui News.

The new County Council, during its inaugural meeting held Wednesday at the Kaua‘i War Memorial Convention Hall in Lihu‘e, gave County Clerk Peter Nakamura and County Attorney Al Castillo the green light to keep their jobs. Garden Island.

A wave of public opposition Tuesday persuaded a lame-duck County Council to postpone a $56 million bond authorization until it can be heard by a new council seated Dec. 6. West Hawaii Today.

The County Council played Grinch to Mayor Billy Kenoi on Tuesday, postponing till after the holidays his request to borrow $56 million. Tribune-Herald.

With mutual allegations of insincerity flying, the County Council Water Resources Committee on Tuesday decided to allow its resolution about exploring the possibility of acquiring the Piiholo South water well to expire. Maui News.

The show is over at the ocean entry point at Kilauea Volcano. KHON2.

A 3rd Circuit Court judge took under advisement arguments about whether a mainland bonding company should deposit about $35 million with the court while Hawaii County's case against it proceeds. West Hawaii Today.

A small gathering at the state Capitol marked World AIDS Day in Hawaii. KHON2.

Those red ribbons all around the world on Wednesday, reminded people that AIDS continues to take lives. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Democratic Sens. Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka are calling for the repeal of the military's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy that bars gays and lesbians from openly serving in the armed services. Associated Press.

It was supposed to be a family vacation to celebrate their parents 45th wedding anniversary and spend the holiday with relatives. KHON2.

During the second part of a two phase expansion, Molokai’s Coffees of Hawaii anticipated bringing the community a full restaurant menu, extended hours and a safe place a have a drink with friends in the evenings in Kualapu`u. Molokai Dispatch.

The Social Media Club of Hawaii wants to recognize local accomplishments, online good deeds. Hawaii Independent.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Volcano consumes Kalapana home, Maui beach widening suspended, gubernatorial candidates mix it up, drought worsens, Heftel Post Office nixed

Lava from Kilauea showed off its unstoppable power of beauty and destruction on Sunday. Hawaii News Now.

An innovative and privately funded beach replenishment project on Stable Road has been suspended early. Maui News.

Unlike open beaches, pocket beaches tend not to wax and wane with the seasons. Building groins - walls extending perpendicularly from the shore into the water - is a way of creating an artificial cove with a pocket beach. Maui News.

Former U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie is sending the message to gay activists that they could have to wait four years or longer for civil unions if he is not elected governor. Star-Advertiser.

Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona leans forward as if he wants to share a secret. Star-Advertiser.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mufi Hannemann opened his West Hawaii campaign headquarters Saturday in Kailua-Kona where he committed himself to improving Hawaii's education and economy while reminding area residents of his Big Island connection. West Hawaii Today

Gubernatorial candidate Neil Abercrombie this week announced he has accepted invitations from media outlets offering a series of live debates leading up to the Sept. 18 primary election. Garden Island.

A proposal to rename Makiki Post Office after the late Democratic U.S. Rep. Cecil Heftel has stalled because Heftel's widow objected to the bill's author: U.S. Rep. Charles Djou, a Republican. Star-Advertiser.

Every morning, Tony Williams wakes to the sound of waves crashing on Hawaii's famed Waikiki beaches and has a spectacular view of the Pacific. But he's not paying a cent for his priceless vista. Associated Press.

Hawaii taxpayers are on the hook for billions of dollars in construction projects over the next few decades, ranging from sewer upgrades to undersea power cables. Star-Advertiser.

A new attraction at the Waikiki Aquarium may be small but it's hoping to make a huge impact.KHON2.

Michelle Galimba has been moving her livestock across her 10,000-acre Kuahiwi Ranch to higher elevation in Kau on the Big Island in hopes of finding better pastures during a drought that is causing her business and others hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses. Star-Advertiser.

The University of Hawaii  may turn to a surprising source as it deals with a yawning budget shortfall brought on by a poor economy and lower legislative outlays: Mainland and foreign students who can provide a boost to tuition revenue. Civil Beat.

The Kaua‘i County Council Planning Committee, after several deferrals, on Wednesday approved a controversial bill that would allow vacation rental owners to apply for non-conforming use permits. Garden Island.

It's been two and a half years since Dawn K. Gambsky's life ended and she was buried in a shallow grave in her own backyard. Tribune-Herald.

Fewer immigration services will be available starting Monday while Honolulu's U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office moves to a new location. Associated Press.

Even in the face of furloughs, two Molokai schools – Maunaloa and Kilohana Elementary – met adequate yearly progress (AYP) benchmarks in math and reading scores this year. Kaunakakai Elementary landed on the cusp, missing its goal by only 1 percent. Molokai Dispatch.

Friday, May 21, 2010

State tax checks in the mail, the taxman leaveth, Big Island still loves its pickup trucks, water the issue on Maui, UH may hike tuition, Kileauea wows the media, more top Hawaii news

Saying pickup trucks are some families' only mode of transportation, the Hawaii County Council on Wednesday rejected a resolution aimed at keeping passengers from riding in open truck beds.

In this day and age of volatile gas prices and a downward-spiraling economy, drivers may be increasingly more inclined to accept that driving is a privilege rather than a right.

It's not a lot of money in the scheme of Hawai'i's $50 billion-plus economy. But the nearly $125 million in state tax refunds that start going out today will provide a welcome psychological lift as businesses try to come back from an exhausting economic downturn.

State Tax Director Kurt Kawafuchi will be leaving his job June 15, Gov. Linda Lingle's office said yesterday.

Gov. Linda Lingle invited about two dozen public school principals, teachers and parents to her office Thursday, to discuss three education bills awaiting her signature.

A bill making its way through Congress could provide Hawai'i with an estimated $91 million to save education jobs and potentially help eliminate furlough Fridays next school year, according to U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye's office.

Hawaii will move its primary from late September to the second Saturday in August starting in 2012 to comply with a federal law intended to ensure that military and overseas voters get ballots within 45 days before elections.

Mail-In Voting The Winner In Special Election

A fundraising letter from the Republican National Committee that rankled Congress into passing a law banning deceptive mailings because they could be mistaken for an official U.S. Census document appears to be making the rounds in Hawaii.

University of Hawaii administrators are weighing whether to propose a tuition increase beginning in the fall of 2012.

Media Council of Hawaii is filing another complaint to the Federal Communications Commission about the merger between KGMB, KHNL and KFVE.

Every year thousands of visitors travel to Kilauea on the Big Island for a chance to see one of the most active volcanoes in the world. A massive plume still billows from the active lava filled vents.

Halemaumau Crater has been putting on a show like this since March 2008.

The public is being asked to comment on major improvements for Highway 130 -- the Keaau-Pahoa Road -- that may cost in excess of $100 million.

With the relaxing of water limits and removal of the penalty of jail time, the Hawaii County Council on Wednesday found a water spigot bill it could agree upon.

The proposed Villages of Aina Lea South Kohala development would offer some new regional road connectivity, with a mauka-makai road between the development, which is mauka of the Mauna Lani Resort, and nearby Waikoloa.

A U.S. Geological Survey study 4 years in the making and released this week describes the effects of taking millions of gallons of water daily from "the Four Streams" of Na Wai Eha that originate in the West Maui Mountains.

The state Commission on Water Resource Management will take up a petition next week to set new instream-flow standards for 16 East Maui streams.

The Pioneer Mill abandoned the sugarcane fields of Lahaina in 1999, and the browning of the once verdant slopes of the West Maui Mountains began.

A car running on java plum wood chips was the star of the 14th Annual Agriculture and Environmental Awareness Day, Thursday.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

New telescope for Mauna Kea, Kilaueau lava wowing viewers, civil union supporters push for reforms, Legislature targets birthers, Maui councilman runs for mayor, Miss Teen Hawaii dies from stroke, more

Following years of delays, a new telescope was lowered in pieces into its new home.

Lava from Kilauea Volcano's east rift zone has inched closer to the Kalapana viewing area, meaning visitors can get a closer look at the flows.

Supporters of civil unions are making a new push for legislative action before the current session ends next Wednesday.

A proposal aimed at stopping repeated requests for information from so-called "birthers" might also shut out legitimate information requests by the public, says a University of Hawaii professor opposed to the measure.

As the end of the legislative session draws closer lawmakers were working at the Capitol Tuesday night.

Hawaiian Electric Co. was looking into the cause of an outage that left 1,200 customers without power in the downtown area Tuesday afternoon.

Many users of the city's park recreational programs are expected to testify at Honolulu Hale today that they don't want to see senior, youth and other activities cut.

Miss Hawaii Teen dies from sudden stroke

Maui County Council Member Sol Kaho'ohalahala has decided to seek the mayor's office rather than re-election to the council's Lanai residency seat.

The entrepreneur who created a virtual marketplace that connects sellers and buyers worldwide is launching an online news site where people will pay to exchange ideas and discuss issues affecting their communities.

The Kaua‘i County Council’s review sessions for Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr.’s proposed $146.29 million operating budget next year wrapped up Tuesday without much of the glamour of its opening day less than two weeks earlier.