Showing posts with label Sylvia Luke. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sylvia Luke. Show all posts

Thursday, September 8, 2022

COVID testing company gives big to Hawaii Democrats, Honolulu permitting chief resigns, Maui police chief cleared, Kauai council gives itself 15% raise, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Why Is Nomi Health Donating To Key Democrats In Blue State Hawaii After Giving Big To GOP? The Utah-based company contributed to the campaigns of six Democrats in Hawaii, including Josh Green and Sylvia Luke, the Democratic nominees for governor and lieutenant governor. USA Today.

Former defense contractor pleads guilty to PPP fraud. A former Hawaii defense contractor changed his plea to guilty in federal court Wednesday, admitting he defrauded banks of more than $22.8 million intended to help businesses struggling through the COVID-19 pandemic. Martin Kao, 49, the former head of Martin Defense Group LLC, formerly known as Navatek LLC, is charged with bank fraud and money laundering. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Marines welcome new commander of Pacific forces. Lt. Gen. Steven Rudder handed the reins of Marine Corps Forces, Pacific to Lt. Gen. William Jurney in a Wednesday morning ceremony at Marine Corps Base Hawaii at Kaneohe Bay. Star-Advertiser.

Abrupt closure of air ambulance company leaves many in shock. The parent company of LifeSave KuPono shut down the air ambulance service Wednesday, leaving just one air ambulance company serving the islands. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaiian Airlines dropping employee vaccination mandate.
Hawaiian Airlines is removing COVID-19 vaccinations as a requirement for employment effective Oct. 1 and dispensing with other elements of its COVID-19 safety policy. Star-Advertiser.

Researchers emphasize importance of wastewater surveillance to monitor COVID.
After delays in Hawaii’s wastewater monitoring program, DOH officials said they have started processing some wastewater samples to monitor COVID. Hawaii News Now.

New COVID booster shots available as Hawaii case counts decline. Several pharmacies have already started taking appointments for the boosters, while some community health centers are preparing to do so in the coming days. Kaiser Permanente Hawaii will begin offering the bivalent COVID-19 boosters at its facilities Friday. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Health Department reports 1,215 new COVID-19 infections, 11 coronavirus-related deaths this past week. The state’s average positivity rate, meanwhile, continued dropping to 6.4% compared to 7.3% reported the previous week. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Director Of Honolulu’s Troubled Permitting Office Resigns. Mayor Rick Blangiardi appointed Dean Uchida with hopes of streamlining permitting, but delays have gotten significantly worse. Civil Beat. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio.

Pentagon speeds up timeline for defueling Red Hill by several months. The U.S. Department of Defense has sped up its timeline for draining the Navy’s underground Red Hill fuel tanks by about five months and now expects that the work can be completed by July 2024. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Honolulu taxi industry wants more control over meter rates. Dale Evans, CEO of Charley's Taxi, has asked the City and County of Honolulu to repeal the ordinance that controls taxi fares — which she says is threatening her business. Hawaii Public Radio.

Another Key Player In The Miske Conspiracy Case Has Made A Deal With Prosecutors. Lance Lee Bermudez is the sixth of the original 10 co-defendants to flip by agreeing to testify against the accused crime boss. Civil Beat.

Thursday parade and festivities to honor Honolulu Little League World Series champions. The city of Honolulu will come together Thursday to honor the Little League World Series Champions -- with a midday parade and festivities on beginning at noon. KITV4. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Affordable housing scandal: Council seeks accounting; defendants fire their lawyers. Hilo attorneys Paul Joseph Sulla Jr. and Gary Charles Zamber, in a Sept. 1 status conference with federal Magistrate Judge Kenneth J. Mansfield, asked that their attorneys be terminated so they can represent themselves. West Hawaii Today.

Hilo Bayfront Trails project gets next installment. While the first phase of the project — which connected Mooheau Park, Pauahi Street, the Bayfront canoe hale, and the Bayfront soccer fields — was completed in 2016, work on a second phase to connect Kilauea Avenue to the soccer fields trail built in Phase 1 didn’t begin until earlier this year. Tribune-Herald.

County Works to Set Replacement Schedule for e-Waste Collection Events. While the county’s e-Waste Collection Program remains suspended, county officials say they are working to set a replacement schedule of electronics recycling collection events for the remainder of the calendar year with the reduced state funding available. Big Island Now. Big Island Video News.

Maui

Maui Police Commission Finds Complaints Against New Chief ‘Not Substantiated’. Outside investigators were hired to look into several complaints made against John Pelletier, who has hired a coach to address his management style. Civil Beat.

Maui Council committee to consider Energy Conservation Code amendments. Councilmember Kelly Takaya King announced that the Climate, Action, Resilience and Environment Committee, which she chairs, will consider a county-specific version of Hawaiʻi State Energy Conservation Code. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kaua‘i county council approves 15% raises for mayor, department heads, council members. In a procedure unique among Hawai‘i counties, Kaua‘i County council members unanimously voted Wednesday to approve raises that will likely affect some of their own salaries. Garden Island.

Laukona Park improvements pau. The county’s Department of Parks &Recreation and Cushnie Construction hosted a small group of dignitaries, community supporters and friends to the new pavilion Wednesday, after Sean Chung officiated at the blessing of the Laukona Park Improvements Project in Hanama‘ulu. Garden Island. Kauai Now.

Sunday, August 14, 2022

Special election edition: It's Green, Aiona, Luke, Tokuda and a bunch of incumbents, more election news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Josh Green thanks supporters for Democratic gubernatorial primary win PC:Hawaii News Now
Democrat Josh Green and Republican James ‘Duke’ Aiona will face off for Hawaii governor. Democratic Lt. Gov. Josh Green and former Republican Lt. Gov. James “Duke” Aiona are the Nov. 8 general election candidates to become Hawaii’s next governor after Saturday night’s overwhelming party primary election victories. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Associated Press. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Democrat Sylvia Luke triumphs, Seaula Tupai grabs GOP spot in race for lieutenant governor. Sylvia Luke has won the six-way Democratic race to be Hawaii’s next lieutenant governor, triumphing over other top contenders Ikaika Anderson and Keith Amemiya. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Jill Tokuda dominates Patrick Branco in runoff for Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District. In the contentious race to become the Democratic candidate for Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District, Jill Tokuda dominated challenger Patrick Pihana Branco in Saturday’s primary election results, capturing a lead of more than twice as many votes and a berth in the Nov. 8 general election. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

House Speaker Scott Saiki not among losing incumbent lawmakers. A few incumbent Hawaii lawmakers are on a path to being ousted from the Legislature based on near-­complete voting results in Saturday’s primary election. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Kalei Akaka wins Office of Hawaiian Affairs’ Oahu seat; 6 others advance in at-large race. Kalei Akaka cruised to re-election to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees after capturing more than 50% of the vote for the Oahu seat. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Stream of last-minute Hawaii voters turn up in person. Statewide, the only long lines were reported at the voter service center in Wailuku, Maui, according to Nedielyn Bueno, spokesperson for the state Office of Elections. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

All Honolulu City Council races advance to November run-off election. Honolulu City Council District 8 candidates Ron Menor and Val Okimoto are neck-in-neck in the crowded primary race for the open seat. Menor is leading Okimoto by just seven more votes. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island


Inouye bests Acasio in Democrat primary; other state Senate matchups set. State Sen. Lorraine Inouye, whose Paukaa residence was redistricted from Senate District 4 to Senate District 1, cruised to an easy victory Saturday night over District 1 incumbent Laura Acasio in the Democrat primary election. Tribune-Herald.

Evans, Galimba take council races: The District 9, District 6 County Council candidates appear not to face a runoff. With an estimated 90% of votes counted, Naalehu cattle rancher Michelle Galimba appears to have come out on top of a four-way County Council District 6 race, rounding up 54.27% of the votes, enough to win the race outright against contenders Colehour Bondera, Shane Palacat-Nelson and Henry “Bo” Cho III. West Hawaii Today.

Kagiwada, Kusch headed for runoff in Hilo. Two political first-timers, Jenn Kagiwada and Matthias Kusch, will face each other in a runoff election in November for the County Council District 2 seat representing Hilo. Tribune-Herald.

6 incumbents win outright for Hawaii County Council. In the race for Hawaii County’s nine Council seats, all of the six incumbents in the running were reelected Saturday. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

It’s Kahaloa, Kennealy in the general election: Former Kanuha aide sweeps Democratic primary. Kirstin Kahaloa swept through the Democratic competition and is headed for a general election matchup against Republican Jonathan Kennealy for the newly created House District 6, holding a commanding 63.3% of the vote, with about 90% of votes counted Saturday. West Hawaii Today.

Kapela to face Goodwin, Last for House District 5. Republican Lohi Goodwin and Libertarian Michael Last will challenge Democratic incumbent state Rep. Jeanné Kapela to represent House District 5. West Hawaii Today.

Slow, steady and smooth: Voters wrap up the primary process. A steady stream of voters came to the West Hawaii Civic Center, where a few voting options were provided to people for Saturday’s primary election. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Incumbent Maui Mayor Michael Victorino to face former judge Richard Bissen in general election. Retired state judge Richard Bissen looks to have a good shot at unseating Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino in a November runoff election after drawing the most votes in Saturday’s mayoral primary election. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Maui Now. Maui News.  Hawaii News Now.

DeCoite secures win over Ritte; McKelvey and Walker top Senate District 6 primaries. In the closely watched Democratic primary race for state Senate District 7, incumbent Sen. Lynn DeCoite beat challenger Walter Ritte by a much wider margin on Saturday night. Maui News.

Early Maui County Council results highlight Valley Isle natives, political newcomers. Late Saturday night, Maui native Nohe U’u-Hodgins was ahead in the race for the Maui County Council Makawao-Haʻikū-Pāʻia residency seat, which is being vacated by Council Member Mike Molina, who is running for mayor. Maui Now.

Turnout in Maui County lowest in the state at 25 percent. Lines started forming at the voter service center in Wailuku early on the morning of Election Day as residents hurried to place their votes before the close of voting on Saturday. Maui News.

Kauai

Incumbent Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami easily advances to the Nov. 8 election. Incumbent Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami received a majority of the votes in the primary election for the county mayoral race and will advance to the Nov. 8 general election with first-time candidate Michael Roven Poai. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Carvalho, Evslin, Rapozo top council field.
The crowded field in the county council race was whittled down slightly after the primary election Saturday, with five of 19 candidates eliminated. Garden Island.

Friday, August 5, 2022

RIMPAC wraps up war games, super PAC spends millions in LG race, petroleum found in Moanalua well, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Sea Hunter crewless vessel arrives at Pearl Harborfor 2022 RIMPAC PC:U.S. Navy
Month-long RIMPAC exercises wrap up in waters off Hawaii. RIMPAC concluded Thursday after over a month of war games that united militaries from around the world. RIMPAC’s 2022 return was super-sized, after a smaller 2020 version during the onset of COVID-19. Hawaii News Now.

This Hawaii Super PAC Is Spending Millions To Defeat One Political Opponent This Year. Be Change Now has launched an aggressive campaign attacking lieutenant governor candidate Rep. Sylvia Luke. Be Change Now, a super PAC funded by contractors who do business with the Hawaii Regional Council of Carpenters, is spending more than $2 million this year supporting Ikaika Anderson’s run for lieutenant governor with radio, digital and newspaper ads, according to recently filed campaign spending reports. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Meet the GOP candidates looking to flip Hawaii's U.S. House seats. The 1st Congressional District hasn't been in GOP hands in over decade, when it was briefly represented by Rep. Charles Djou.  And the 2nd District has never been represented by a Republican since its creation. KITV4.

Crowded field vying for seats on OHA Board of Trustees. Eighteen candidates are vying for six seats in the primary election for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees, including a retired state senator, a former star University of Hawaii football player and all six incumbents. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii's gay leaders take steps to educate, vaccinate their community against monkeypox. Monkeypox can infect anyone, but the majority of cases in the US outbreak have been among men who have sex with men, including gay and bisexual men and people who identify as transgender. KITV4.

Oahu

Board of Water Supply detects petroleum contamination in Moanalua monitoring well. The Honolulu Board of Water supply says it has detected petroleum-related chemicals in a monitoring well in Moanalua Valley, elevating concerns that fuel contamination from the Navy’s Red Hill fuel facility is traveling through the aquifer and putting a major source of drinking water for southern Oahu at risk. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Efforts ramp up to reduce crime in Waikiki. A new crime-reduction program called “Safe and Sound Waikiki” is kicking off in the neighborhood where a rash of high-profile violent crimes, including a recent sword attack at a Kalakaua Avenue 7-Eleven, has sharpened community concerns. Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Steve Alm said the multiagency program is based on the already established “Weed and Seed” program, which seeks to “weed out” criminals from a particular district and then “seed” communities by investing in social and economic revitalization. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Prosecutor’s Office Won’t Charge SWAT Officer Who Killed Kakaako Man. The department concluded that officers last year did everything they could to de-escalate a tense barricade situation. After an almost yearlong investigation, the Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney’s Office determined that the SWAT officer who shot and killed a man in his Kakaako apartment was justified in his actions and will not be charged. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Hilo hospital sees surge in patients: Several factors push it well above capacity. HMC on Thursday reported 13 holds in the Emergency Department, 13 patients in the overflow areas, and 37 patients waitlisted for beds elsewhere. Waitlisted means they are looking for a long-term space to obtain care outside of their homes and HMC. Tribune-Herald.

Crews to soon begin process of dismantling observatory. Caltech Submillimeter Observatory Director Sunil Golwawa said the complete removal of the observatory — the first of five to be removed in exchange for the planned construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope — should be finished by the end of the year, with deconstruction of the building itself beginning before the end of summer. Tribune-Herald.

2,695 and counting: Hawaii Wildlife Center marks 10 years of saving native birds and bats.
Around 150 different bird and bat species have been seen at the hospital, including 27 rare species. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Money Is Flowing Into Maui County Races As The Primary Election Nears. Developers, real estate investors and business interests are pouring contributions into local campaigns. In the month before voting started for the Aug. 13 primary election, recent campaign finance data shows that almost $282,000 flowed into the campaigns of candidates trying to lead Maui County’s $1 billion government. Civil Beat.

Annalisa M. Bernard appointed to fill judicial position in Maui’s Second Circuit Court. Chief Justice Mark E. Recktenwald today appointed Annalisa M. Bernard to fill a judicial position in the District Court of the Second Circuit in Maui County. Maui Now.

Maui County home sales cool in June; single-family home median sales price at $1.1 million. Maui County home sales fell by more than 50% for condos and 20% for single-family houses last month, as rising mortgage rates and record-high sales prices pushed out buyers. Maui Now. Maui News.

Monkeypox case on Maui brings Hawaii’s total to 12. The state Department of Health on Thursday announced an additional case of monkeypox in a Maui resident who traveled outside of the state, bringing the number of cases in Hawaii to 12. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio. Big Island Now. Maui Now. KHON2.

Kauai

Broken X-Rays lead to long wait times, high stress at Lihu‘e Airport. Faulty X-ray machines at Lihu‘e Airport led to long waits and high tensions this past week. Contracted security manager Charlie Iona estimated that at certain points wait times were two hours. Garden Island.

COVID continues downtrend on Kauaʻi. Kaua‘i’s test positivity rate was 17.3% — higher than the state average of 13.8%. Garden Island.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Green strong in gubernatorial race, voters favor legal marijuana, split on legalizing gambling, mama monk seal attacks swimmer, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Approvals still high for Josh Green in Hawaii governor’s race. Registered Democratic voters continue to give Lt. Gov. Josh Green high approval ratings and overwhelmingly said they will vote for him in his run to become Hawaii’s next governor. Green would receive 55% of Democratic Primary votes if the election were held “today,” according to the results of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lieutenant governor’s race deadlocked. State House Finance Chair Sylvia Luke led the poll with 21%, followed by 19% for former mayoral candidate Keith Amemiya and 18% for former Honolulu City Council Chair Ikaika Anderson. Sherry Menor-McNamara, CEO and president of the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii, trailed with only 4%. Star-Advertiser.

Voters give Ige and Biden approval boost, Hawaii Poll shows. Ige received a 41% approval rating in January compared with 44% this month, according to the results of the latest Honolulu Star-Advertiser Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

Majority in Hawaii oppose people packing firearms in public, poll finds. Most Hawaii residents disagree with a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that supports the right to carry a gun in public, while 25% say the state needs stricter firearm regulations, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s latest Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii voters support legalizing recreational cannabis, but split on legalizing gambling. A majority of Hawaii residents favor legalizing recreational cannabis to increase tax revenue for the state but are split about legalizing gambling for the same reason, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s latest Hawaii Poll. Star-Advertiser.

Affordable Housing: Top Democrats See ‘Emergency’ But Differ On How To Build Faster. Vicky Cayetano wants to work with the Legislature to declare a state of emergency in housing, while Josh Green wants to push ahead with 42,000 stalled units. Civil Beat.

Cost Of Living: Here’s How Top Democratic Candidates Say They Could Help. Lt. Gov. Josh Green wants to eliminate the state excise tax on food and medicine and impose a new fee on tourists to shift some of the state tax burden to visitors. Vicky Cayetano is ready to entertain the idea of capping rent increases as a way to provide relief to residents who are struggling with the sky-high cost of living. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Emergency SNAP benefits extended in Hawaii. Gov. David Ige has extended a COVID-19-­related emergency period for additional Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits in Hawaii, citing a still-­significant need to address food insecurity in the state. Star-Advertiser.

More Help Is Coming For Hawaii’s Homeless Youth. Act 130, recently signed into law, establishes the Safe Spaces for Youth Pilot Program under the Department of Human Services. Civil Beat.

Hawaiʻi to get $20M in additional federal funds to keep keiki fed. The funding, some of which was authorized in the Keeping Kids Fed Act that Senator Hirono helped pass in both the House and Senate before it was signed into law last month, is meant to help Hawaiʻi address supply chain issues and food inflation in its school meal programs. Maui Now.

Hawaii Will Soon Have A Women’s Court In An Effort To Reduce Recidivism. Advocates hope the three-year pilot program will prevent more women from being incarcerated and re-entering the criminal justice system. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Woman is injured while swimming near nursing monk seal. The incident occurred near a roped-off section of beach that the seal, known as Rocky, has been occupying with the pup since giving birth two weeks ago.  Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Can The Dems Finally Take Ewa Beach Away From The GOP? With their incumbent vacating his seat to run for U.S. Senate, voters in Ewa Beach and Iroquois Point–-- one of only four Republican House districts in Hawaii – will decide this November whether to keep District 40 Republican or to vote in a Democrat for the first time in a decade. Civil Beat.

Housing and crime dominate Honolulu City Council District 6 election. District 6 covers Downtown through Nuuanu and Kalihi Valley, and the seat is currently held by Council member Carol Fukunaga, who has reached her term limit and is running for a state Senate seat in District 11. Star-Advertiser.

Case pending before Hawaiʻi Supreme Court to look at Kealoha legal fees. The City and County of Honolulu continues to fight a 2019 decision by the Honolulu Police Commission to pay for former Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha's criminal defense. Hawaii Public Radio.

Engineers give the public a chance to comment on proposals to manage Ala Wai Canal. The latest effort to prevent a Waikiki flooding disaster linked to the Ala Wai Canal is set to advance this week as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers gives the public a chance to comment on its preliminary work. Star-Advertiser.

Misdemeanor probe into Honolulu police union leadership forwarded to state Attorney General. Honolulu police have forwarded the findings of a misdemeanor extortion investigation to the state Department of the Attorney General, which will decide whether to charge the president and vice president of the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers. Star-Advertiser.

Your drone is interfering with Hawaii emergencies. In April 2020, the Honolulu Fire Department used drones to enforce then Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s COVID-19 stay-at-home and work-at-home order at beaches around Oahu. The drones played an audio message telling people not to gather or sit on the beach. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

Big Island lawmakers react to campaign fundraiser ban. Coronavirus pandemic protocols, a bribery scandal and debate over a bill to make fundraisers illegal during the legislative session all combined this year to keep Big Island lawmakers from holding the Honolulu fundraisers that historically added big boosts to their reelection campaigns. West Hawaii Today.

No fares till 2025: Hele-On to remain free for an additional two years under bill. Some $1.87 million in American Rescue Plan funding has been allocated to the Hawaii County Mass Transit Agency for operations and lost passenger fares through Dec. 31, 2025, agency administrator John Andoh told the county Finance Committee Tuesday at the West Hawaii Civic Center in Kailua-Kona. West Hawaii Today.

Tiny houses at NAS Pool being relocated, repurposed. More than a year after serving as an emergency shelter for the homeless during the coronavirus epidemic, 31 of 32 micro-housing units once dubbed Hale Hanakahi are being moved from the parking lot at the NAS Pool in Hilo. Tribune-Herald.

ADA improvements ready to begin at NAS Swimming Pool. t appears that long-awaited construction on court-ordered Americans With Disabilities Act improvements at the NAS Swimming Pool near Hilo International Airport is set to begin. Tribune-Herald.

Vision For New Puna Learning Center Campus Pictured In EA. The Final Environmental Assessment illustrates the proposed construction of six new buildings over four phases at the Pāhoa campus. Big Island Video News.

Keauhou development on hold for cultural review. Developers of a planned 65-lot single home project on 11 acres in Kapalaalaea were given an extra assignment Thursday, as the Leeward Planning Commission deferred the oft-delayed project until an updated cultural impact assessment could be produced. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Eight candidates battle for mayor in the most crowded county race. The Maui News is featuring the profiles and platforms of candidates in the lead-up to the Aug. 13 primary election. Maui News.

Kauai


Improvements to homeless shelter will accommodate more people. The improvements project, headed by Keith Suga and Michael Rita of Pacific Concrete Coring and Cutting, eliminated six independent, aging and problematic septic systems and connects the KEO facility to the municipal wastewater system, reducing future maintenance costs and protecting groundwater integrity. Garden Island.

Alternative wastewater treatment system workshop Thursday in Hanalei. Ridge to Reefs and Wastewater Alternatives and Innovations are hosting a workshop on a nature-based wastewater treatment system Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Hale Halawai ‘Ohana O Hanalei. Garden Island.


Monday, April 11, 2022

Congressman Kahele shuns Washington for Hawaii, House-Senate Mauna Kea showdown looms, Maui officials get 5% raises, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2022 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
U.S. Rep Kai Kahele ©2022 All Hawaii News

Has US Rep. Kai Kahele Given Up On Washington? The Hawaii congressman, who hasn’t been to the nation’s capital since January, has been having other members cast his votes for months. Civil Beat.

Working in Legislature gives Sylvia Luke a leg up in lieutenant governor’s race. State Rep. Sylvia Luke has a clear advantage over the four other candidates running for lieutenant governor as the only one currently serving in elected office and, especially, as chairwoman of the powerful House Finance Committee. Star-Advertiser.

Big state budget proposal moves forward with anticipated record surplus. The state Senate is ready to vote on a draft budget that increases spending — thanks to higher than expected revenues that have resulted in a big surplus. Lawmakers said a lot of the anticipated record surplus will go toward restoring critical programs and services, many of which were stalled during the COVID lockdown. But some watchdog groups are cautioning against boosting the budget too quickly. Hawaii News Now.

State budget proposal has significant allocations for child welfare programs. The state Senate Ways and Means Committee approved a version of Gov. David Ige’s proposed fiscal year 2022-2023 operating budget on Thursday. Hawaii Public Radio. Maui News.

Patients Are Dying Before They Can Get Help To Kill Themselves. Advocates hope House Bill 1823 will lower barriers to medically assisted suicide by making it easier for  doctors to prescribe medications and lowering wait times. Civil Beat.

A group of chemicals found in nonstick cookware and firefighting foam could soon be banned from some products in Hawaii as a growing body of research shows they’re polluting the environment and suspected of causing health problems, including cancer. Hawaii House Bill 1644 would prohibit the manufacture and sale of certain items that contain PFAS: wraps and liners, plates, food boats and pizza boxes. Civil Beat.

For the first time in more than two years
, The Pride of America Cruise ship has relaunched their inter-island sailings. Hawaii DOT officials say for the initial trips, the Norwegian Cruise liner will only be at 50% capacity, which is just over 1,000 passengers and crewmembers aboard. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Hot, dry summer could bring mandatory water restrictions on Oahu. If conditions continue to trend drier going into the hotter summer months, water customers from the Aiea-Halawa area to Hawaii Kai could face mandatory water restrictions and the potential for periods of low water pressure and water outages due to the problems linked to the Red Hill crisis. Star-Advertiser.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin reaffirms pledge to defuel Red Hill. U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin reiterated Thursday the Defense Department’s pledge to defuel the Red Hill fuel storage facility, but did not give a timeline for doing so. Hawaii Public Radio.

Students, staff at schools affected by Red Hill fuel leak remain wary of tap water. The caution tape finally has been stripped off nearly all the sink faucets and drinking fountains at Red Hill Elementary School, now that the fuel contamination warnings have been lifted. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu developers face fallout from the Navy’s Red Hill water crisis. The potential water shortage facing urban Honolulu is already threatening to hold up hundreds of units of affordable housing, new residential and commercial projects in Kakaako and a major environmental upgrade to a sewage treatment plant, among other planned developments — a predicament that could have far-reaching effects on the island’s economy. Star-Advertiser.

Upstart company wants to establish garbage-to-energy power plant to rival Oahu’s power facility. An upstart Hawaii company aims to establish a second garbage-to-energy power plant on Oahu using technology proclaimed as superior to the city’s long-running H-POWER facility. Star-Advertiser.

City: New modular complex could be model for future affordable housing projects. The complex is made out of modular units built in Canada. Two years ago, the City Council urged leaders to consider this kind of construction to speed up the process. Hawaii News Now.

Why More Apartment Buildings May Not Be The Answer To Oahu’s High Housing Costs. A Canadian asset management company is stepping into a void with more than 1,000 apartments built or planned for Honolulu. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Sticker shock: Businesses beg for property tax relief. Hawaii Island business groups, facing steep increases in property values, are clamoring for relief from taxes set forth in a record high $689.9 million budget proposed by Mayor Mitch Roth. West Hawaii Today.

State House and Senate on a collision course over future of astronomy on Mauna Kea. Change to Maunakea bill gives joint authority to UH, new state entity. After a Friday meeting of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, House Bill 2024, which is intended to transfer authority of the Maunakea summit lands to a newly formed state entity, passed with additional amendments that allow the University of Hawaii to retain control of astronomy on the Big Island. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Hawaii News Now.

Army seeks input on PTA lease. The U.S. Army is requesting public feedback on a draft environmental impact statement that will determine whether part of the Pohakuloa Training Area will remain under Army management. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News.

Waipio Valley Road Closure Prompts Community Organizing, Legal Action. The road closure, which took many by surprise, has provoked emotional divisions among diverse groups of people who use the valley. Civil Beat.

Maui

Panel awards pay raises to mayor, council. Five percent salary increase to take effect July 1. Reversing a decision four months ago to defer pay raises for the mayor and County Council, the Maui County Salary Commission voted Friday to give 5 percent salary increases to the elected officials. Maui News.

Two longtime West Maui politicians aim to change course. Cochran shifts from county to state politics, McKelvey pulls papers for state Senate. Two longtime West Maui politicians are looking to head in a new direction, with one venturing from county to state politics and the other hoping to move from the state House to the state Senate. Maui News.

Hula advocates urge full support for Maui’s proposed Hālau of ʻOiwi Art. Many of the more than 50 people who testified during a budget committee meeting on Friday voiced support for funding of Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art, a center dedicated to the study, practice, celebration and perpetuation of hula and various ‘ōiwi arts connected to hula. Maui Now.

Maui County seeking applications for Recycling Grant Program. The Maui County Environmental Protection and Sustainability Division is soliciting grant applications for the recycling grant program for fiscal year 2023. Maui Now.

Health officials shut down Lahaina restaurant after seeing cockroaches, a cat and a rat. The Hawai‘i Department of Health’s Food Safety Branch has issued a red “closed” placard and shut down a restaurant in Lahaina due to pests, food debris, grease accumulation and more. Hawaii Public Radio.

Kauai

Slight bump in homelessness.
The Point-in-Time Count, conducted by Bridging the Gap, a coalition of agencies working to end homelessness on the neighbor islands, showed that there were 444 homeless individuals on island — a 5% increase over the 424 in 2020. Garden Island.

Kamokila future is up in the air as eviction looms. With an eviction deadline approaching, the future of the Kamokila Hawaiian Village in Wailua is hanging in the balance. Garden Island.

Monday, March 28, 2022

Hawaii drops travel restrictions, most mask mandates, Green, Luke get early union endorsements, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Honolulu airport July 31 2021 PC:My Kailua Facebook community page

After screening more than 12M passengers, Hawaii lifts all restrictions for mainland arrivals. With the Safe Travels program ended, mainland arrivals came into the islands Saturday without having to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Mask rules remain for public school students, stirring mixed opinions. It’s been a month since the CDC updated its guidelines and said they no longer recommend universal indoor masking in education settings with low or medium COVID levels. DOH continues to recommend indoor masking. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii becomes last state to lift mask mandate, but some opt to keep wearing them. While businesses can decide to put mask rules in place, the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii says most are leaving the decision up to customers. Hawaii News Now.

Judge Dismisses Vaccine Mandate Suit. A federal judge said Hawaiian Airlines employees challenging the company’s vaccine requirement could sue again after the EEOC has made a final determination. Civil Beat.

These Environmental Bills Have Survived The Legislative Process So Far. Most of the bills proposed by the Environmental Legislative Caucus have died, with only five of 12 measures remaining. Civil Beat.

Two broadband internet-related bills still alive. Most broadband internet-related bills are dead in the state Legislature, while a surviving bill will create another state agency to develop broadband infrastructure.  Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Home Lands financial-assistance proposal stirs debate. Proposals to infuse $600 million to help clear the backlog of Hawaiian Home Lands beneficiaries include different ways to provide financial assistance to Native Hawaiians willing to remove themselves from the waitlist of 28,700 beneficiaries. Star-Advertiser.

Federal funding earmarks to help boost University of Hawaii research to record $500 million. Thanks in part to the return of congressional budget earmarks, the University of Hawaii system will receive tens of millions of dollars in the new federal budget, including research dollars that will help bring UH’s overall research funding to a record-­high $500 million for the year. Star-Advertiser.

Panel recommends 5 nominees to Hawaii Land Board.
The Senate Committee on Water and Land recently held public hearings on two separate days to vet five nominations from Gov. David Ige for the seven- member board overseeing the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s Population Continues A Slide That Began In 2017, New Data Shows. The pandemic interrupted survey collection efforts but researchers say the new data can be helpful to chart Hawaii’s demographic shifts. Civil Beat.

Justice department urges vigilance as internet crimes cost Hawaii more than $17 million in 2021. People in Hawaii lost $17.2 million to online crimes last year, with investment scams, romance cons and the illegal use of digital currency accounting for the largest financial swindles, according to the FBI Internet Crime Report. Star-Advertiser.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green Is Racking Up Union Endorsements, Adding To His Momentum. The primary election is still nearly five months away and only a handful of candidates have formally filed to run, but Lt. Gov. Josh Green and state Rep. Sylvia Luke are already emerging as two of the biggest beneficiaries in the biennial union endorsement sweepstakes. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Land plan pits University of Hawaii against Hawaiian homes agency. Hawaii lawmakers are trying to force the University of Hawaii to give a long-vacant piece of land near Diamond Head to the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands. Star-Advertiser.

City plans to increase enforcement of short-term vacation rentals. The city Department of Planning and Permitting plans to hire short-term vacation rental investigators following persistent complaints about property owners taking advantage of short-term rental regulations in residential zones. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu COVID quarantine sites will transition to affordable housing, city officials say. City officials said the number of rooms needed for isolation-quarantine dropped from 58 in January to less than five by mid-March, and that as of Wednesday, only two individuals remained at Harbor Arms, one of its two facilities. Star-Advertiser.

State and city eye 19 empty Waikiki lots. State Rep. Adrian Tam is leading a drive to get the city to purchase long-vacant plots of Waikiki land owned by Okada Trucking Co. and earmark it for higher use. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island


Keauhou Bay redevelopment and bungalow resort proposed. The state’s largest private landowner is seeking public input on a plan to reconfigure commercial and cultural attractions at Keauhou Bay and build a 150-unit bungalow-style resort. West Hawaii Today. Big Island Video News.

Skate park design unveiled: Project would cost about $6M over four phases of construction. After 15 years of unfulfilled plans, a conceptual design for the Hilo Skate Park finally was revealed to the community Thursday night. Tribune-Herald.

Council advances Waikoloa timeshares. A plan to replace nine holes of golf at Waikoloa Beach Resort with 900 timeshare units, a 140-unit workforce housing complex and 25 single-family home lots was advanced Wednesday by the County Council after a dispute between council members over whether asking for a list of community benefits amounts to “pay to play.” West Hawaii Today.

Trial delayed again: Ex-cop in missing drug case fires attorney as jury selection got underway. A former Hawaii Police Department officer slated to stand trial last week on charges stemming from a May 2019 indictment for allegedly stealing cocaine from a police evidence locker in Hilo back in May 2016 received a continuance after firing his court-appointed attorney. West Hawaii Today.

Is Katherine Kealoha A Credible Witness In The Coming Drug Trial Of Her Brother? The criminal trial for the brother of disgraced former Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha, Rudolph Puana, a Big Island anesthesiologist accused of running an illicit prescription drug ring, is set to start this week following repeated delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Civil Beat.

HCC students grow crops on Honua Ola land
; 90% of harvest will go to The Food Basket. Big Island agriculture students are taking the opportunity to plant produce on three acres of land through a partnership with Honua Ola Bioenergy in Pepeekeo. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Hawaiian Electric mulls later shutdown for Kahului plant. Hawaiian Electric is weighing whether to push back the retirement of its fossil fuel-reliant Kahului Power Plant as it works to get spare parts for four engines at another key facility. Maui News.

PARKLINQ introducing ‘smart parking’ at Maui Ocean Center. Hawaiʻi-based company PARKLINQ has developed a high-tech, tiered parking rate system, which the company says is the first of its kind in the world. Maui Now.

Kauai

While visiting Kaua‘i, Gov. Ige talks infrastructure, COVID.
On this most recent trip, Ige and his team came for a blessing of the Lihu‘e Airport, showcasing the renovations to the lobby and ticketing area, marking yet another point of investment by the state in county infrastructure. Garden Island.

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Hawaii House leadership faces upheaval with Luke's LG candidacy, recall petition filed against Maui mayor Victorino, floating wind turbines mulled off Oahu, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Sylvia Luke

Sylvia Luke’s Bid For LG Will ‘Shake Things Up’ At The Legislature. As Finance Committee chairwoman, Luke controls the money, has command of the details and has made a lot of friends. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

COVID-19 vaccinations for younger children in Hawaii could begin Nov. 8, Ige says. David Ige expects the first round of COVID-19 vaccines for Hawaii children ages 5 to 11 to begin around Nov. 8, following expected federal approval. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Once vaccine for younger kids gets OK, more than 100 schools to host vaccination sites
. State Department of Health spokesperson Brooks Baehr said 113 schools have already agreed to become vaccination sites. Hawaii News Now.

Senator Kurt Fevella seeks halt to vaccine incentive payments to prisoners. The state Senate minority leader is seeking an immediate stop to an incentive program that offers $50 pay­ments to inmates in Hawaii’s prisons and jails if they accept a COVID-19 vaccine. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now. KITV4.

Bank of Hawaii earnings jump 64% amid improving economy. Bank of Hawaii Corp.’s earnings surged 64% in the third quarter as the company hit a record $23 billion in total assets and released $10.4 million from its loan-loss reserve amid an improving economy. Star-Advertiser.

Ige eyeing tweaks to Safe Travels program. Gov. David Ige has no plans to end the Safe Travels program, but is considering adding more options for users. Tribune-Herald. Hawaii News  Now.

Hawaii sees 97 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 83,448. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 42 new cases on Oahu, 28 on Hawaii Island, eight on Maui, seven on Kauai, and 12 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Electricity generated by proposed floating wind turbines off Oahu is feasible, new study finds. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory recently completed a cost and feasibility analysis for floating wind farm power in federal waters at least 3 nautical miles from the shoreline of Hawaii’s most populous island. Star-Advertiser.

Alleged Hawaii crime boss seeks September trial date. Michael Miske, the alleged leader of a Honolulu crime syndicate that used legitimate businesses to conceal drug dealing, murder, arson, fraud and other offenses is seeking a later start to his trial to allow his attorneys more time to review evidence and prepare a defense. Star-Advertiser.

Retired public defender in Kealoha mailbox trial details drama, interagency tensions in new book. Federal public defender Alexander Silvert, now retired, represented that innocent man — Gerard Puana, who wept after his name had been cleared. But it would take seven years and several trials to finally get the convictions of the former chief and his wife Katherine Kealoha, a former high-ranking Honolulu prosecutor. Hawaii Public Radio.

New Video Allegedly Shows Honolulu Police Leaving Scene Of Makaha Crash. The attorney who provided the video says it shows three police vehicles pursuing a Honda at a high rate of speed on the Farrington Highway. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Kaneohe Marines say wastewater released into ocean exceeds acceptable bacteria levels. Effluent water from Marine Corps Base Hawaii is combined with treated water from the city’s Kailua Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant, which is then discharged some two miles off-shore of MCBH at 110 feet below the surface of the ocean into a mixing zone, where direct risk of exposure is low. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Residents protest failed injunction against COVID restrictions. Native Hawaiian activist Gene Tamashiro filed a petition in August in Third Circuit Court calling for an end to all vaccination and mask mandates in the state. On Monday, Judge Henry Nakamoto dismissed the petition with prejudice, arguing that the petition had no merit. Tribune-Herald.

$300,000 coming to coffee farmers to battle leaf rust. The  is coming from the state Department of Agriculture, thanks to a bill passed by the state Legislature extending and enhancing the state’s Coffee Berry Borer Pesticide Subsidy program. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

“Recall Mayor Victorino” Initiative Aims to Obtain 21,586 Signatures in 30 Days. Group leaders say they are seeking Mayor Victorino’s removal as they stand in opposition to ongoing emergency health mandates, calling the county government practices an “overreach” of powers. The group submitted an affidavit with the County Clerk’s office on Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021 to begin the legal process of seeking a recall. Maui Now. Maui News. KITV4.

ʻĀina kupuna bill aims to help long-time Maui families keep ancestral lands amid rising property taxes. Maui County Council members are considering a measure to help long-time families keep their ancestral lands — properties that have been passed down for at least three generations. Hawaii Public Radio.

For some on Maui, bike tours are a ‘nuisance on the roads.’ They want new regulations. The Kula Community Association wants more regulations on the bike tour companies. They want to regulate the hours of the tours, size of the groups, even set an age requirement. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

Surfrider seeks hearing on shrimp farm permit. Kaua‘i Shrimp, the island’s only shrimp farm, is seeking a new pollutant permit, which is raising concern from some environmentalists. Garden Island.

Namolokama Canoe Club hale’s future still to be determined. County officials and residents have been assured the Black Pot Beach Park Master Plan is not set in stone, after the Namolokama Canoe Club raised objection to the potential demolition of the old Hanalei Canoe Club buildings near the park. Garden Island.

 

Monday, October 25, 2021

Renovations to close Diamond Head, $160M state psychiatric hospital sits idle, Honolulu mulls banning commercial activities at beach parks, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2021 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Diamond Head hike pre-COVID ©2021 All Hawaii News

Diamond Head demolition project to close state monument. Diamond Head State Monument will be closed on Oct. 28 and 29, and then again from November 1-5. The historic fire control station will be closed November   6-19, and possibly longer depending on construction progress. KITV4.

Hawaii Rep. Sylvia Luke Plans To Run For Lieutenant Governor. The powerful House Finance chair joins a growing field of Democrats seeking the state’s No. 2 job in 2022. Civil Beat.

Hawaii State Hospital’s new $160 million psychiatric facility sits empty. The new facility took years to develop, but five months after state officials opened the building to media tours, it remains empty as DOH continues to develop policies to govern its operations and struggles to fill staff positions. Star-Advertiser.

State calling on landlords to help solve the homeless crisis. State officials say negative stereotypes and fear of the unknown are holding back many landlords from participating in subsidized housing programs. That, in turn, is perpetuating homelessness. KITV4.

Department of Public Safety officials grappling with inmate overcrowding amid the coronavirus pandemic are trying something new — retrofitted shipping containers. According to the latest population reports from the Department of Public Safety, the state has 440 more inmates in its custody than its facilities were designed to hold. Hawaii Public Radio.

Shipping containers purchased by state to house inmates in quarantine sit idle.
The state has spent more than $1.3 million in CARES Act funds to buy shipping containers that would have been used to house inmates in quarantine. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii records 3 new coronavirus-related deaths, 163 additional infections. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 93 new cases on Oahu, 40 on Hawaii Island, eight on Maui, 12 on Kauai and 10 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Majority of Honolulu's ARPA funds will go towards economic recovery for underserved communities. The City and County of Honolulu will distribute nearly $400 million to Oʻahu communities through the American Rescue Plan Act. About $156 million — the largest portion — will go to support economic recovery. This includes expanding affordable housing and providing support to the agriculture industry. Hawaii Public Radio.

City Council looks at banning commercial activities in city beach parks. Bill 34, introduced by Council member Heidi Tsuneyoshi, would ban commercial activities, with the exception of professional filming, from Sunset Point to Kaiaka Point. Star-Advertiser.

Most Honolulu first responder COVID vaccine exemption requests cite religion. The department had received 948 exemption requests by Oct. 18, 76% of the time for religious beliefs. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Supply of at-home COVID test kits replenished for Oahu residents.
The Honolulu Fire Department, which has played a key roll in testing across Oahu, has received their latest supply of at-home COVID tests. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Community Services Gets Second New Director Within Four Weeks. Anton Krucky, the former CEO of a biotechnology company, is now in charge of the city department that administers housing vouchers. Civil Beat.

Proposed Reapportionment Plans For Oahu Could Mean Painful Political Fallout. One longtime lawmaker describes the new district maps as a ‘gerrymander,’ and incumbents plan to lobby for changes. Civil Beat.

The Next Community To Host Oahu’s Landfill Can Learn From The Westside. As the city searches for a new site, the Westside offers lessons on how a place can turn into the island’s perceived ‘dumping ground.’ Civil Beat.

Solar farm planned amid cultural and historic sites including WWII Ewa battlefield
. A Canadian renewable-­energy company plans to develop a solar farm in the vicinity of Ewa Field, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, and two proposed historic districts connected with Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor nearly 80 years ago. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

$1M FEMA grant for Mana Road fire. Hawaii County is receiving $1 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help pay for battling the largest wildfire in island history, but whether the volunteers who threw themselves into the fight will get their costs reimbursed remains to be seen. West Hawaii Today.

Homeless project gets go-ahead.
A homeless emergency shelter and housing project in Kailua-Kona took an incremental step forward Friday, with unanimous approval by the state Board of Land and Natural Resources for a ground lease and right of entry for Hawaii County. West Hawaii Today.

County seeks public input on Puna water restoration projects. Puna residents are being asked to submit feedback about a range of water restoration projects Hawaii County could pursue using federal funds. Tribune-Herald.

New Kahalu‘u Bay Surf School Rules Approved. The Hawaiʻi Board of Land and Natural Resources voted Friday to implement the amended rules limiting and regulating commercial activity in ocean waters at Kahalu‘u. Big Island Video News.

Maui

NASA Awards $15M for Asteroid Hunting Telescopes on Maui
. The University of Hawaiʻi Institute for Astronomy's IfA’s Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS) atop Haleakalā currently finds nearly as many NEOs and PHAs as the rest of the world’s observatories combined, and nearly 60% of the largest and most dangerous ones with sizes greater than 140 meters across. Maui Now.

Online Public Hearing Set for Proposed Rules for Ukumehame Firing Range. The County of Maui Department of Parks and Recreation has scheduled an online public hearing on Wed, Nov. 10, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. to discuss the proposed adoption of an amendment to the rules to require firearms to be registered. Maui Now.

Foodland Announces Vaccine Mandate. At least one Maui retail giant is serious about complying with proposed federal mandates that companies with more than 100 employees must meet mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirements. Maui Now.

Kauai

Controversial Former Kauai Prosecutor Wants Her Old Job Back.
Supporters say Shaylene Iseri is a tenacious lawyer ready for a comeback, but there are people who question her ability to manage staff. Civil Beat.

Namolokama Canoe Club hale’s future still to be determined. County officials and residents have been assured the Black Pot Beach Park Master Plan is not set in stone, after the Namolokama Canoe Club raised objection to the potential demolition of the old Hanalei Canoe Club buildings near the park. Garden Island.