Showing posts with label coral reefs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label coral reefs. Show all posts

Monday, March 4, 2024

Legislature-UH power struggle to play out on Senate floor, state to search across the islands for geothermal energy, HECO campaign contributions, lawmakers' stock holdings analyzed, TMT risks losing billions of NSF funding, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Supporters Say ‘Abuse Of Power’ Is At The Heart Of Senate Committee’s Rejection Of UH Regent. The full Senate is set to vote on Alapaki Nahale-a's reappointment this week.  Civil Beat.

Hawaii Lawmakers Take Campaign Money From Hawaiian Electric But Don’t Own Its Stock. Rep. Richard Onishi, D-Hilo,  appears to be the only elected Hawaii lawmaker who has declared holding any interest in Hawaiian Electric Industries stock, according to the most recent public financial disclosures filed with the Hawaii Ethics Commission. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Electric adjusts customer energy programs. A recent ruling by the state Public Utilities Commission has led Hawaiian Electric to modify and push back the start of new rooftop solar and energy storage programs to April 1. Star-Advertiser.

State to embark on search for geothermal energy sources.
In the race to meet the state’s goal of achieving 100% renewable energy by 2045, the Hawaii State’s Energy Office will embark on a new venture by searching for geothermal energy sources throughout the state.  KHON2.

Efforts to lower Hawaii teachers’ housing costs advance. Two bills intended to help retain Hawaii teachers by providing assistance to reduce their housing costs continue to advance through the Legislature. Star-Advertiser.

Senate committees advance marijuana legalization bill. Two Senate committees jointly advanced an amended bill that would legalize recreational marijuana in Hawai’i in a Friday meeting, pushing the measure closer toward final approval.  Big Island Now.

Farmers advocate at the state Capitol for action on agricultural crimes. Agricultural crimes are a nearly universal experience for local ranchers and farmers. Now, the state is being called on to do more about it. Hawaii Public Radio.

After nearly 3 decades, State Representative Bertrand Kobayashi announces decision to retire.
He said in a statement Friday that he suffered a “mini cerebrovascular incident” this past December and said the condition “may tend to worsen with time and age.” Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii’s midwifery licensure law comes under fire.
The Center for Reproductive Rights, the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. and law firm Perkins Coie filed a lawsuit last week on behalf of nine women and countless others affected by Hawaii’s “Midwifery Restriction Law,” which they say criminalizes many practitioners including skilled midwives, birth workers and family members who provide care and support to pregnant people and those giving birth. Star-Advertiser.

Coast Guard navigates bureaucracy in fight against illegal fishing. Efforts to protect the Pacific’s fish stocks are becoming increasingly international. Australia, New Zealand and France have joined the U.S. in ramping up support for Pacific island countries to protect fisheries as well as police the high seas. Star-Advertiser.


Mayor identifies affordable housing as key priority in budget proposal for upcoming fiscal year. Honolulu’s mayor revealed his budget proposal for the 2025 fiscal year, prioritizing affordable housing even though the budget was down. Mayor Rick Blangiardi is requesting $3.63 billion in operating costs, up from $3.41 billion from the previous year. Hawaii News Now.

Mayor allocates $80M for COVID hazard back pay in his FY25 proposed budget. Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi's proposed $3.6 billion operating budget for the next fiscal year includes $80 million for back pay to city workers exposed to hazardous situations in the pandemic. KITV4.

City Council lays out official strategy for climate change prevention on Oʻahu. Honolulu has adopted Climate Ready Oʻahu, the city’s first-ever climate adaptation strategy. The Honolulu City Council this week approved a resolution to establish the strategy against the impacts of climate change. Hawaii Public Radio.

After Lahaina, Waianae Coast Residents Might Finally Get A Key Evacuation Route. State leaders think it's an opportune time to make much-needed fixes to outdated transportation infrastructure at Kolekole Pass. Civil Beat.

Plan to fund Waikiki hula show could spur lawsuit. A new free Waikiki hula show is attracting visitors and kamaaina alike, but legal challenges on how it will be funded are lingering. Star-Advertiser.

YWCA Laniakea’s wellness program to end after more than 100 years. For more than 100 years, the YWCA Laniakea has offered group exercise classes, a fitness center and access to a one-of-a-kind pool at its downtown campus. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Festival’s return builds bonds.
Visitors from Japan are expected to double for this year’s Honolulu Festival, a cultural exchange celebrating Japan and the Pacific Rim that kicks off Friday and runs through March 10. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Thirty Meter Telescope risks losing billions in funding from the National Science Foundation. Funding for the Thirty Meter Telescope may be in jeopardy following a decision by the National Science Foundation board to place a $1.6 billion budget cap on giant telescope projects. Hawaii Public Radio.

Puna groundwater study sought: It would try to determine whether PGV has an impact. The impacts of Puna Geothermal Venture on Puna’s groundwater could be the subject of a nearly $500,000 federal study being proposed by a Hawaii County Council member. Tribune-Herald.

Street Medicine Program Expands On Hawaiʻi Island.
The Hawaiʻi Island Community Health Center’s Street Medicine Outreach program is now bringing quality healthcare directly to individuals facing homelessness, across the island. Big Island Video News.

Hundreds rally in Punaluu in protest of major planned development.
The protestors are speaking out against Black Sand Beach LLC and its plans to revitalize the area. The company’s website says it’s committed to rebuilding historic structures and listening to the community before building anything new on its more than 400 acres around Black Sand Beach. Hawaii News Now.


Questions remain over threats of moratorium on West Maui vacation rentals. A threat to put a moratorium on Maui vacation rentals has been averted as conversions of short-term units into longer-term housing for wildfire survivors continues, but the attention now turns to West Maui under Gov. Josh Green’s new April 1 deadline to find units for those who don’t want to be relocated away from the area they call home. Star-Advertiser.

Prefab buildings in Lahaina to house wildfire survivors. A state social services agency is working to produce what could be the first temporary housing community developed for Maui fire survivors, a 450-unit project where initial occupancy is expected in a few months. Star-Advertiser.

Army Corps Leader Hands Off Lahaina Recovery Mission After 6 Months Of 24/7 Days. With skills learned in Iraq and Afghanistan, Col. Jesse Curry says he embraced the people and culture to gain support for the Army Corps of Engineers' fire recovery efforts. Civil Beat.

How A Team Of Dedicated Cops And Scientists Sorted Through Ash And Rubble To Identify Lahaina’s Fire Victims. The Maui Police Department was able to quickly bring in the latest DNA technology so a new squad could soon give names to the dead. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i Unites files appeal in effort to stop release of mosquitoes in East Maui. The environmental nonprofit Hawai‘i Unites has filed an appeal for their case against the State of Hawai‘i Board of Land and Natural Resources and Department of Land and Natural Resources to stop the release of mosquitoes in East Maui and require an environmental impact statement and comprehensive studies of the risks of the project. Maui Now.

In Hawaii, coral is the foundation of life. What happened to it after the Lahaina wildfire? Scientists say there has never been another instance of a large urban fire burning next to a coral reef anywhere in the world and they are using the Maui wildfire as a chance to study how chemicals and metals from burned plastics, lead paint and lithium-ion batteries might affect delicate reef ecosystems. Associated Press.

Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi residents say unreliable flights hinder access to critical health care. Mokulele is the only airline flying to Molokaʻi and the primary air service for Lāna’i residents. Community members say the issues have been ongoing for the past couple of years. Hawaii Public Radio.


Relay for Life golf tourney draws 60 golfers. Sam Jacinto of Team Sam Jacinto was thrilled with the 60 golfers who sped off the Puakea Golf Course clubhouse area on Saturday. Garden Island.

Friday, February 16, 2024

Hawaii insures coral reef to guard against climate change, new Maui Emergency Management head says agency shouldn't take the lead in emergencies, Miske cousin testifies about chemical attack at nightclub, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

More Ocean Area Will Be Covered Under Hawaii’s New Coral Reef Insurance Policy. The novel approach to protecting reefs is expanding as state officials consider the more ways to guard against climate change. Civil Beat.

Bill proposes moving Hawaii school construction oversight back to DOE. Just as the state has been trumpeting its opening 13 public preschool classrooms well in advance of its Ready Keiki plan to open 50 to 80 by August, a bill is advancing to repeal the relatively new state School Facilities Authority and move all school construction back again to the state Department of Education, and the authority’s founding executive director has abruptly resigned. Star-Advertiser.

Measure seeks to grant autonomy to state Water Commission following the fires. A proposal currently advancing in the Legislature aims to strengthen the State Water Code and safeguard the Commission on Water Resource Management from outside influence. Hawaii Public Radio.

Lawmakers may set new requirement for EV charging in state buildings. House Bill 1829 would require that at least 25% of parking stalls be EV charger-ready in any new state building construction. Hawaii Public Radio.

Gender Inequalities Persist In Hawaii High School Sports 6 Years After Locker Room Scandal. A class-action lawsuit over problems at Campbell High School has been settled, but the state still has a lot of work to do to comply with a federal anti-discrimination law. Civil Beat.


Defendant in cases against former Honolulu prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro May Pose Danger To Others, Probation Officer Says. Sheri Jean Tanaka, a defendant in a high-profile Honolulu corruption case may be a “danger” to others or the community, and the court should reconsider the terms of her pretrial release, her probation officer said on Thursday.  Civil Beat.

Miske cousin testifies alleged crime boss ordered him to release chemical into nightclub. Kaulana Freitas also explained his role in a chemical attack at the District Nightclub in 2017, saying he released what he believed was tear gas in the club after Miske ordered him to do so. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu city job openings about 2,500, officials say. In May, DHR Director Nola Miyasaki told the Star- Advertiser that city staffing vacancies remained at 2,500 — a number down from over 3,000 vacancies the year prior. In 2022, Mayor Rick Blangiardi’s administration took measures to quash the six-month wait time it took to fill an average city and county employee position. Star-Advertiser.

After years of delays, redevelopment of Mayor Wright Housing gets the go-ahead. The Hawaii Public Housing Authority announced Thursday that the city’s Planning and Permitting Department has approved plans to redevelop Mayor Wright Housing. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.  KITV4.

New housing development could be coming to St. Francis School property. The property, which is zoned for residential use, was purchased for $23 million according to brokerage firm CBRE. And the developer is looking to build a slew of single family homes to be purchased for roughly $2 million a piece. KHON2.

Newest tiny-home kauhale is blessed on Middle Street
. Ho‘okahi Leo — or “a community with one voice” — was built using units relocated from Hawaii’s first “medical respite kauhale,” which went up temporarily in 2023 near the governor’s mansion and across from The Queen’s Medical Center as a pilot project for discharged homeless patients too frail to heal properly on the street. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio.  KHON2.

Experts: Major changes at Wahiawa General will have health care impacts islandwide. Come spring, all inpatient services at Wahiawa General Hospital will be suspended — once Queen’s Health System takes control of the hospital. The reason: Health officials say the aging facility is in such disrepair, it’s not worth investing the money to fix. Hawaii News Now.

Lack of trucks delays refuse and recycling collection on East Oʻahu.
City and County of Honolulu officials didn't explain why there was a lack of collection vehicles, but assures the pick-ups will be made over the next couple of days. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

Hawaiʻi County Democrats Elect Interim Chair. Pono Kekela was elected Interim Chair of the Hawaiʻi County Committee of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi at its first Quarterly meeting of 2024. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.

Camera on Maunakea captures image of blazing space debris. A fiery object seen over Maunakea last week is believed to have been the remains of a falling satellite, astronomers say. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii County urges state to stiffen penalties for negligent dog owners.  On Hawaii Island, a county resolution will be heard next Wednesday morning that supporters hope will lead to stiffer penalties for dangerous dog owners who are negligent. KITV4.


New MEMA Administrator says agency shouldn’t take the lead in future emergencies. Lonokailua-Hewett said he sees MEMA as a coordinating and supporting agency instead. The Administrator for the Maui Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) says he doesn’t believe MEMA should take the lead in future emergencies. Hawaii News Now.

Maui Mayor Mum On Why He Placed County Finance Director On Paid Leave.
Scott Teruya has led the department for the past five years but has been off the job since Feb. 2. Civil Beat.

Proposal advances for special board control in rebuilding Lahaina.
Two Senate committees voted unanimously to advance Senate Bill 3381 to a third and final Senate committee where passage is expected ahead of a full Senate vote and potential consideration in the House of Representatives. Star-Advertiser.

$53M Maui Airport Industrial Center breaks ground, opening set for 2025. R.D. Olson Development held a groundbreaking recently of the Maui Airport Industrial Center project, located on a 6.3 acre parcel in Kahului near Costco at 250 Lauo Loop.  Maui Now.

Obstetrician shortage on Maui addressed.
HMSA’s immediate, short-term solution for expectant Maui moms impacted by the obstetrician shortage included arranging travel and appointments for them to receive care on Oahu with Queen’s physicians.  Maui News.

Maggie Batangan named MEO Chief Administrative Officer. Maggie Batangan has been named to the newly created Chief Administrative Officer position for the nonprofit Maui Economic Opportunity. Maui News.


Wailua Heritage Trail pau, for now.
A joint effort between the County of Kaua‘i, Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, Kaua‘i Visitor Bureau, Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources and Royal Coconut Coast Association (RCCA) resulted in the expansion of the Wailua Heritage Trail to a full 3-mile route. Garden Island.

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Schatz appeals to Senate colleagues to help Maui, Hawaii only state with no fire marshal, Waikiki crime drops under new program, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

'They Need Help': Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz Discusses Deadly Maui Wildfires On Senate Floor. Schatz describes fire’s horror and its aftermath to Congress. U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz made no specific funding proposal, but detailed the events that led up to the Aug. 8 Lahaina fire and the ongoing suffering in a speech before Congress on Tuesday. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.  KHON2.

Hawaii Is The Only State Without A Fire Marshal, Leaving Gaps In Prevention. Instead, Hawaii has a relatively powerless State Fire Council. But fire agencies want that to change. Civil Beat.

Wildfires pose serious risks to coral reefs. The Lāhainā fire could make it worse. Off the coast of Olowalu in West Maui, hundreds of acres of coral cover the ocean floor. It's home to many different species of marine life, including one of the largest known populations of manta rays in the world. Hawaii Public Radio.


Honolulu City Council To Vote On Over $5 Million In Settlement Payouts. The lawsuits included a fatal police shooting case and the city's effort to seize property in Waikiki for affordable housing. Civil Beat.

Anti-crime program for Waikiki marks 1 year. City officials say a program targeting the island’s prime tourist zone has lowered violent and property crimes dramatically since its inception in September 2022. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.  KHON2.  KITV4.

Honolulu Crime: Why Some Misdemeanor Cases Are Closed Without Review. A new policy in the Honolulu Prosecutor's Office means some allegations will languish if the complainant doesn't call to follow up. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Island

Public Invited To Participate In Next Phase Of General Plan Review.  Public Informational Workshops are scheduled for Hilo and Kona, with online workshops set to take place after. Big Island Video News.

New draft ordinance aims to ban recyclables at West Hawai’i landfill. Hawai‘i County’s Environmental Management Commission is developing an ordinance that aims to prohibit the amount of recyclable materials ending up in the island’s only working landfill.  Big Island Now.


Maui landowners sued over Lahaina disaster. Attorneys for the plaintiff said the complaint is the first one filed in state court to allege that landowners who had dry, poorly managed brush on their property that fed flames are responsible for the wildfire that killed at least 115 people. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

MPD requires missing-person report to search for those listed as ‘unaccounted for’. People listed as unaccounted for after the Aug. 8 Maui wildfires that killed at least 115 will have their classification changed to deceased through a legal process if they are not found or their remains are left unidentified. Star-Advertiser.

Cleanup of Lahaina’s watery graveyard begins. State and federal agencies are combining forces to oversee the cleanup of Lahaina Harbor, which became a watery graveyard for scores of boats burned and damaged by the massive West Maui wildfire. Star-Advertiser.

West Maui Businesses May Soon Be Able To Tap Into A New $25 Million Grant Program. The program would distribute grants of $10,000 to $20,000 as a lifeline to struggling Lahaina business owners. Civil Beat.


Family medicine training to expand on Kaua‘i.  The University of Hawai‘i, John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) announced on Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, through the Health Resources and Services Administration, will invest $750,000 to plan and develop a rural family medicine residency program on Kaua‘i. Garden Island.

Kapa‘a Swimming Pool to reopen Thursday; blessing held last week. Officials initially anticipated construction to be complete by late May 2023. However, further renovations were deemed necessary before the pool reopened. When exposed after removing the tiles and plaster, the pool’s original shell was more deteriorated than expected. Kauai Now.

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

$25M initiative to restore coral health, monk seal pup found dead on North Shore, Big Island to quit spraying glyphosate on county roadsides, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

$25M initiative to restore health of Hawaii’s coral reefs. Arizona State University on Monday announced the creation of a new $25 million initiative that aims to preserve and restore the vitality to Hawaii’s declining coral reefs. Star-Advertiser.

Monk Seal Pup Found Dead On Oahu’s North Shore.
The discovery comes after officials disclosed another young seal was most likely killed intentionally on the island in March. Civil Beat. Big Island NowKHON2.

State school board shake-up raises questions. No one who knows why Gov. Josh Green removed Bruce Voss as chair of the state Board of Education is talking openly about the reasons.  Star-Advertiser.

Inflation is stabilizing, but Hawaii food costs high. Honolulu’s inflation rate is easing, but prices for some items are still higher than they were last year, according to federal data. Star-Advertiser.

Hotels offer applicants perks amid staffing shortages. More than 80% of hoteliers across the nation are reporting staffing shortages, and Hawaii is no exception with this year’s projection for state hotel jobs expected to be nearly 12% below pre-pandemic levels. Hawaii’s projected hotel job decline is tied for 20th worst along with Arizona and Minnesota.  Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii On The Hill: Hirono Talks K-Pop, Cats And Carrying On At DC Event. The U.S. senator from Hawaii talked about a wide range of issues during the 7th Annual Hawaii on the Hill event in Washington, D.C. Civil Beat.


Ex-Council chair pleads not guilty to abuse charge. Former Honolulu City Council member Ikaika Anderson has pleaded not guilty to allegations of domestic abuse levied by his 34-year-old girlfriend. Star-Advertiser. KITV4.

New HPD Budget Adds Potential Hiring Bonuses, Boosts Chinatown And Community Policing.
Recruiting incentives for new officers and civilian hires are under discussion. Civil Beat.

Portal for City’s rent, utility relief program closes after surge in applications. Due to extraordinary demand from Oahu renters, the City and County of Honolulu’s Rental and Utility Relief Program (RURP) application portal closed again Tuesday afternoon. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

The patient numbers at Red Hill's clinic are low
. Why are civilians seeking care elsewhere? Earlier this year, the military opened the Red Hill Clinic to provide treatment to those facing long-term health effects from the November 2021 jet fuel water crisis. Hawaii Public Radio.

City to start major improvement project on Kalākaua Avenue. Honolulu's Department of Design and Construction announced that they will be renovating the roads and curbs for the next nine months. The project also includes adjusting manhole covers and utility boxes. Hawaii Public Radio.

Vandals Nearly Destroyed This Central Oahu Cemetery
. Now The Community Is Standing Up For The Dead. The state has stepped in to untangle legal issues and create a long-term plan. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

County announces changes for own pesticide use
. The County of Hawaii Public Works Department announced Tuesday plans to end the use of glyphosate-based herbicides on County roadsides, drainage structures, rights-of-ways, and easements by July 1. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News.

Charges against two women — cited in a dispute over nene conservation— were dropped by a judge Tuesday. “It’s a win for the cats.” That was the reaction by Nancy Charles-Parker after misdemeanor charges of the taking of endangered and threatened species against her and fellow Waikoloa resident Ferol Kolons were dismissed without prejudice Tuesday by South Kohala District Judge Jill Hasegawa. Tribune-Herald.

Public invited to learn about Wailuku hydroelectric project on Big Island. The public is invited to a meeting this week to learn more about a project that has provided clean, renewable electricity for more than 30 years on the Big Island and plans for its continued operation. Big Island Now.


Former Mayor, Ex-Mahi Pono Exec Now Want To Steer East Maui’s New Water Board. The council is considering the additional applicants as DHHL scraps its initial recommendation of Jonathan Likeke Scheuer. Civil Beat.

Gov. Green moves to increase healthcare opportunities. 
Governor Josh Green, M.D. announced that he has signed legislation that will expand access to healthcare on Maui. KHON2.

Wailuku parking structure to open in September
. The four-story, 393-stall parking structure that aims to clear up street parking in Wailuku town is set to open Sept. 1, according to Maui County and construction officials. Maui News.

USPS seeks to fill 47 job openings at four Maui post offices; Job Fair Blitz on June 15. The US Postal Service is hosting job fairs on June 15 at the Kahului, Kīhei, Lahaina and Wailuku Post Offices.  Maui Now.

Maui parents want more mental health help for woman who allegedly tried to take child. A Maui woman accused of trying to kidnap a child last month is now facing a new charge. Hawaii News Now.


Owning pepper spray on Kauaʻi may get easier with new law. Unlike other counties in the state, to legally own pepper spray on Kauaʻi, a resident needs a permit. A new bill at the Kauaʻi County Council seeks to change that. Hawaii Public Radio.

Kapa‘a Swimming Pool estimated to reopen August. With renovations to the pool beginning in August 2022, the project’s scope of work includes replacing and upgrading the pool filtration, recirculation and chlorination systems. Kauai Now.

Monday, May 29, 2023

Canoe club faces fines after cinder blocks placed on coral, Hawaii joins interstate compact to lure doctors, census shows state population aging, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Damage to be assessed after moorings were placed on coral during Hawaiʻi Island canoe regatta. 16 cinder block lane markers were found resting on coral structures during the Founders Regatta hosted by the Keauhou Canoe Club on Saturday. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Maui Now.

Hawaii moves to lure mainland doctors. Doctors from other states may soon be able to quickly acquire licenses to practice medicine in Hawaii after state lawmakers passed a bill this month enabling the governor to join the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, an agreement among states that streamlines the licensing process. Star-Advertiser.

The aging of Hawaii is accelerating, 2020 census shows.  The U.S. Census Bureau’s demographic profile released Thursday shows there were 282,451 people age 65 and older in Hawaii, representing 19.4% of the state’s total population of 1.45 million. That’s a 45% increase from the number of residents in that age group who were counted in 2010, when they comprised 14.3% of the population, or 1 in 7 residents. Star-Advertiser.

Slight summer cool-down predicted for Hawaii tourism.  A rush of travelers to Hawaii is expected for the Memorial Day weekend, the kickoff to summer, but there are signs in the state’s visitor industry that the season may not be as robust as last year. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Green to name new HTA board members; De Fries’ future uncertain. Gov. Josh Green on Friday morning said in an online interview he would be appropriating more than $60 million for tourism promotion, marketing and management when he signs the state budget into law in mid-June. Tribune-Herald.

Solar loan program gets $100M recharge. The Legislature this year appropriated a $100 million infusion to an agency nicknamed Hawaii’s Green Bank to continue lending money to households with low and moderate incomes for installing rooftop solar systems while also expanding the program to finance energy storage systems. Star-Advertiser.

State funds for late rent, mediation to be revisited. Key state lawmakers are vowing to revisit a bill that died in the final days of the legislative session that would have required mediation between landlords and tenants before filing for eviction, while providing landlords millions in emergency rent relief. Star-Advertiser.

New $15 Million Grant Seeks To Address Root Causes Of Health Disparities In Hawaii. Hawaii Island Community Health Center will use the funding to elevate children's access to care. Civil Beat.

Hawaii private-school tuitions rise with inflation. While increases in the average tuition for Hawaii’s private schools statewide for this fall will be smaller than expected at about 2.3%, some prominent schools are raising their tuition by much more as they start to catch up with the past two years’ inflation and rate hikes that were delayed or cut back during the COVID-19 pandemic. Star-Advertiser.


Calls Mount For The Honolulu City Council To Vote On Salary Increases. Many constituents feel that the increases are a "slap in the face," and they want more accountability. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Council Members Seek To Make The Chamber A Full-Time Job Amid Pay Criticism. Two measures would ban council members from having other jobs in a move aimed at ensuring they focus all their attention on the public's business. Civil Beat.

‘This Is Gold’: An Unprecedented Push To Restore Urban Honolulu Watersheds From Ridge To Reef. A nearly $8 million project will take the Hawaiian approach to land management and apply it to busy parts of town. Civil Beat.

Pay per wave: Native Hawaiians divided over artificial surf lagoon in the birthplace of surfing. The project has landed in court and reflects the unease some Native Hawaiians feel about the commercialization of what long has been a cultural touchstone. Associated Press.

Kuhio Beach hours to change for safety, cleanliness’ sake. The city Department of Parks and Recreation is making plans to extend Kuhio Beach Park’s daily closure by an extra two hours — a move that will broaden the park’s shutdown from midnight to 5 a.m. Star-Advertiser.

24 people cited at Kaʻena Point State Park, most for access during off hours. Eighteen people were cited Saturday night for being in a closed area, in violation of Ka‘ena Point State Park closure hours on Oʻahu; and five others were cited for not having special access permits, according to the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Maui Now.

Hawaii Island

Mayor Roth To Hold Island-Wide Town Hall Circuit. Mayor Mitch Roth announced the debut of his town hall series, “Sustainable Horizons: Mayor Roth’s Community Impact Check-in,” aimed at providing updates and fostering engagement with communities across Hawaiʻi Island. Big Island Video NewsBig Island Now.

Keck Observatory director retiring after nearly 40 years. When Hilton Lewis began working at the W. M. Keck Observatory in 1986, astronomy was a very different field. Tribune-Herald.

HVO clears final hurdle in move to UH-Hilo.  In a couple of years, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and support staff should be able to move from their temporary headquarters at Hilo Iron Works and a Keaau warehouse and into fancy new digs at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. Tribune-Herald.

Keaau Middle School top site for proposed new library.
A draft environmental assessment for a proposed new library to serve the Keaau and Mountain View communities was published Tuesday and lists five preferred sites for the 13,900-square-foot building, but rates a site at the Keaau Middle School as the most preferred. Tribune-Herald.

64 Cats Captured, Relocated From Waikoloa. An effort to catch and relocate a large number of feral cats from a parking lot in the Waikōloa Resort area is underway, with 64 cats already reported captured, spayed/neutered, and rehomed. Big Island Video News.


County water directors to discuss water rate increases. Maui County Water Supply Director John Stufflebean and Deputy Director James “Kimo” Landgraf will discuss possible water rate increases and other important issues on the county radio show at 7 a.m. Thursday on KAOI. Maui News.

Hawaii Lawmakers Did Not Fund The Overpass To Kihei’s New High School.
The ongoing effort to build a protected pedestrian crossing over a bustling highway to Kihei’s new high school has hit yet another barrier: Lawmakers didn’t put money in the state budget this past session to build it. Civil Beat.


Emergency preparedness survey to be conducted on Kaua‘i. The state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office said it will conduct a Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) survey from June 6-9. Garden Island. Kauai Now.

County offers free composting bins. The County of Kaua‘i Department of Public Works Solid Waste Division announced two new distribution points on the North Shore for Earth Machine Home Composting Bins — ‘Aina Ho‘okupu o Kilauea and the Hanalei Initiative. Garden Island.

Monday, March 20, 2023

Scientists alert to coral disease, bill would legalize raw milk sales, Maui health workers reject contract proposal, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Cargo ships put Hawaiʻi's fragile marine ecosystem at risk of a deadly coral pathogen. Since its first identification in Florida in 2014, stony coral tissue loss disease has earned a reputation as perhaps the most devastating coral disease in history.  Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii abortion protection bill heads to governor. A measure protecting health care workers who perform abortions across the islands, including procedures on women traveling here from out of state, passed out of both chambers at the state Legislature Friday and now heads to Gov. Josh Green’s desk for his signature. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii may boost Medicaid payments to help patients access care. State lawmakers are considering boosting Medicaid reimbursement rates for health care providers in an effort to improve access to care for low-income residents who often struggle to find doctors willing to take their insurance. Star-Advertiser.

Why This Hawaii Lawmaker’s Job With A Major Construction Company Raises Concern. State Rep. Micah Aiu  works as an in-house lawyer for Nan Inc., a major construction company that competes aggressively for state jobs. Since last summer alone, Nan was awarded eight state contracts worth $325 million, according to state procurement records. Civil Beat.

Pilot program to return houseless people to the continent advances at the Legislature. A measure that would establish a three-year pilot program at the state Department of Human Services to help houseless individuals fly back to their families on the continental U.S. has progressed in the Legislature. Hawaii Public Radio.

HB521 seeks to legalize the sale of raw milk. HB521 HD1 was introduced by Representative Mark Nakashima(Hamakua, Hilo, Ka‘ūmana) who chairs the House Commerce and Consumer Protection Committee. Rep. Nakashima says the measure aims to create greater food security for small communities. Maui Now.

State lawmakers seek to bolster school lunch program. State Senate Bill 154 would require the Department of Education to develop and implement a School Meal Subsidy Program to provide lunches for students who do not qualify for the National School Lunch Program. Tribune-Herald.

Gambling bills go bust in Legislature.
The latest efforts to legalize gambling in Hawaii have once again folded, with a deck of bills failing to hit the jackpot in the state Legislature. Tribune-Herald.

Bill Removes Power To Suspend Electronic Media During Emergency.  A House Bill that would remove the ability of the Hawaiʻi governor, or a county mayor, to suspend “electronic media transmission during a state of emergency”, advanced in the State Senate on Friday. Big Island Video News.

Gov. Green considers nominations for intermediate court of appeals. Five nominees for Associate Judge for the Intermediate Court of Appeals have been announced for consideration by the State Judicial Selection Committee to Governor Josh Green. Maui Now.

Hirono condemns proposed 50% cut in cost of living allowance for military families in Hawaiʻi. US Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, questioned a panel of Department of Defense officials about a proposed 50% cut to the cost of living allowance for military families in Hawaiʻi during a SASC Personnel Subcommittee Hearing.  Maui Now.

School Councils Are Supposed To Be The Local School Boards In Hawaii. But They’re Hit Or Miss. A key part of local school oversight and parent engagement is left largely up to individual schools, with wildly varied results. Civil Beat.

Kamehameha Schools quietly selecting new board trustee. Three finalists are being considered to join a board that oversees one of the world’s largest charitable trusts, with a net worth of $15.1 billion and holdings that include hundreds of thousands of acres and schools on three islands giving preference to Native Hawaiian children. Star-Advertiser.

Former Governor Ige Gets Another Lava Tube Award. The Big Island Press Club has awarded the annual Lava Tube dishonor, the meritorious Torch of Light, and - for the first time - a special Oʻo Award for journalism. Big Island Video News.

Hawaiian relics, including Queen Liliuokalani’s personal flag, to be returned. State Archivist Adam Jansen will be headed to New York later this month to bring Hawaii items from Bonham’s auction house home. One of the items is Queen Liliuokalani’s Royal Standard, her personal flag that flew over her Washington Place home on the day the Hawaiian Kingdom was overthrown. Hawaii News Now.


Plans for $300M emergency base move ahead. A state agency spearheading the First Responder Technology Campus finalized an environmental impact statement for the project earlier this month, and many Hawaii lawmakers appear poised to appropriate $100 million to begin building an initial phase. Star-Advertiser.

Hawai‘i Convention Center needs more than $15M quick fix for leaks. Gov. Josh Green has released $15 million in general obligation bonds so the Hawai‘i Convention Center can shore up a leaky rooftop terrace deck — but it’s just a temporary fix and costs for permanent repairs are projected to escalate over the next three years by at least 35% to $88 million. Star-Advertiser.

HPD urged to use recruit incentives and create Waianae patrol district. County lawmakers are urging the city to create the long-planned Waianae patrol district by finishing a half-built police substation and paying recruiting bonuses to officers who help fill uniformed vacancies that numbered 374 as of March 5. Star-Advertiser.

Navy works to repair wastewater plant amid more issues. State and military officials say they are working together to make repairs and improvements to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-­Hickam’s leaky wastewater treatment plant. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

In limbo: Kona Community Hospital Pharmacy needs funds to stay operational. The pharmacy at Kona Community Hospital needs an additional $2.3 million from the state Legislature to comply with federal regulations or risk closure, potentially affecting over 500 chemotherapy patients.  West Hawaii Today.

Military dignitaries from around the world make stop at Pōhakuloa Training Area on Hawai‘i Island. Nearly 30 foreign military attachés and their spouses visited U.S. Army Garrison Pōhakuloa Training Area and Kawaihae Harbor as part of a Headquarters Department of the Army sponsored tour of O‘ahu and the island of Hawai‘i. Kauai Now.


Maui Health employees vote 'No' in latest contract offer, strike to continue. Nearly 500 Maui Health System employees rejected the latest three-year contract offer. Represented by the United Public Workers AFSCME, Local 646, AFL-CIO, the employees had three days to ratify the fourth contract agreement with Maui Health. KITV4.

State takes control of grounded boat near Maui cultural site. The state is taking control of a 56-foot motorboat, Kuuipo, that has been grounded on the north side of the Lahaina Boat Harbor channel since earlier this month to prevent it from damaging the culturally significant Hauola Stone. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now. KHON2.


1 Hotel Hanalei Bay opens after $300M overhaul. 1 Hotel Hanalei Bay, which opened in February on Kauai, aims to set new standards of sustainability for the luxury hotel market — an expensive quest that contributed to an investment approaching $2.1 million per room, among the expenditure highs for purchasing and transforming a resort in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Hawaii reflects on 81st anniversary of Pearl Harbor attack, COVID cases up, mayor asks for respect for Native Hawaii rituals during Mauna Loa eruption, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Thousands gathered Wednesday to mark another year since the Dec. 7 attack on Pearl Harbor and honor all those who sacrificed their lives. At the same time, many celebrated the future that came after — when once bitter enemies became loyal friends and allies. Hawaii News Now. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii Public Radio.  Associated Press. Maui Now.

Defense bill seeks to protect, restore threatened reefs. With climate change threatening the health of coral reefs around the world, Hawaii’s congressional delegation on Wednesday scored apparent victories on behalf of America’s coral reefs in two separate measures that were included in the National Defense Authorization Act, the annual defense bill expected to pass before the end of the session. Star-Advertiser.

Closures Of Red Hill, Shark Fin Ban And Volcano Monitoring Included In Defense Bill. Congress has come to terms on an annual defense budget that sets spending for the U.S. military at $858 million for 2023. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Tourism Authority weighs marketing contract options. Board members of the Hawaii Tourism Authority want authoritative advice on options they may have to deal with the head of another state agency rescinding a multimillion-dollar tourism marketing contract HTA awarded in June. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii daily average COVID cases up after Thanksgiving. On Wednesday the state Department of Health reported a daily average of 182 COVID-19 cases — a jump from 137 reported Nov. 30. The state’s average positivity rate inched up to 6.5% compared with 6.3% the previous week.  Star-Advertiser.

7 new COVID-related deaths, 1,371 new infections recorded in Hawaii, DOH reports.  The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) reported 7 new deaths related to COVID-19 and 1,371 new infections over the last seven days in Hawaii. The total number of deaths stands at 1,744. KITV4.

Amid spike in respiratory illnesses, some Hawaii shelves run low on cold medicines.
Some Hawaii drug stores are running low on cold medicines and children’s painkillers ― a nationwide trend as demand increases along with respiratory viruses. Hawaii News Now.


Honolulu building permit delays might lead to refund.  Honolulu residents whose building permit applications are not approved within a year would receive a 75% refund under a bill that passed first reading Wednesday during the last City Council meeting of the year. Star-Advertiser.

Police Commission Moves To Speed Up Hiring Process Next Time New Chief Needed. In an effort to reduce the hiring time when searching for a new police chief, the Honolulu Police Commission is reviewing the city’s procurement process to see if potential bidders for recruitment services could be approved in advance. Civil Beat.

Honolulu’s Mid-Pacific virtual academy plans $750K expansion.  A Mid-Pacific Institute academy that encourages private and public school students to take classes and collaborate online from anywhere in the world is planning to undertake a $750,000 expansion, thanks to a major grant. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Mayor Mitch Roth asks for respect from visitors of Maunaloa. The Maunaloa eruption has made Hawaiʻi a global celebrity once again, but Hawaiʻi Island Mayor Mitch Roth says some people are being disrespectful of the lava flow. Hawaii Public Radio. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News.

Short-term rentals in agriculture districts again an issue.  The Board of Appeals is scheduled Friday to consider a case brought by neighbors of a five-acre parcel in Captain Cook dubbed “Konania Villas,” that is advertised on vacation rental sites as three two-bedroom, two-bath interconnected villas with a shared courtyard, pool and patio in a “fruit orchard retreat.” West Hawaii Today.

‘A Huge Mess’: Hawaii County Cracks Down On Hu Honua Permit Violations.
The Department of Public Works has issued a violation notice to the biomass energy plant, but the company’s president says everything’s in order and will be sorted out soon. Civil Beat.

Kahele Wants Federal Probe Of Lobbying Efforts For DHHL Lease Extension
. Among the lobbyists representing the Prince Kuhio Plaza is Andy Winer, a recent political rival of the Hawaii congressman and former chief of staff for U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz. Civil Beat.

Former Hilo Jail Guard Sentenced To 8 Years For Assaulting Inmate. Another jail guard was previously sentenced to 12 years in prison while two others are scheduled for sentencing in January. Civil Beat. Big Island Now.


Maui County Youth Council to transmit 2022 final Youth Legislative Package. Resolutions adopted by a majority vote of the Maui County Youth Council of 2022 at its final meeting held earlier this month, will be compiled into the “Youth Legislative Package of 2022.” This will be transmitted via county communication to the Maui County Council at its Dec. 16 meeting. Maui Now.

MVCB partners with Raw Elements to provide mineral sunscreen dispensers in Maui County. The Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau has partnered with Raw Elements to provide 20 mineral-only sunscreen dispensers at high traffic beaches in Maui County.  Maui Now.


Kaua‘i lawmakers on anti-corruption proposals: Transparency and term limits.  The Commission to Improve Standards of Conduct, headed by retired Judge Dan Foley, released more than 30 proposals last week intended to increase transparency, strengthen investigation of fraud, improve ethical awareness and oversight and reduce the power of money in politics. Garden Island.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Insurance policy to help repair reefs after storms, Ige leaves state with $2.6B budget surplus, Kauai issues open carry gun permit, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2022 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Cauliflower coral ©2022 All Hawaii News
Insurance policy unveiled for Hawaii reef repair. The Nature Conservancy is expected to announce today the purchase of a novel insurance policy that will cover up to $2 million in repairs to Hawaii’s coral reefs in 2023 following damage from a hurricane or powerful tropical storm. Star-Advertiser.

Ige Closes Out His Tenure With A Record-Setting Surplus Of More Than $2.6 Billion.
The surplus for fiscal year 2022 is double the previous year, and leaves Josh Green’s incoming administration with ample funding to pursue his initiatives. Civil Beat.

Hawaii police union seeks 25% COVID-19 hazard pay differential. The union for police officers in Hawaii has filed four separate grievances challenging the denial of hazard pay amounting to a 25% pay differential for the peak years of the COVID-19 pandemic between March 2020 and March of this year. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Judges Were Trained To Run Better Child Welfare Hearings. Their Performance Plummeted. Since 2012, the Hawaii Judiciary has been working with a national council to improve the quality of hearings in family court, where proceedings can lead to momentous decisions such as whether parents lose custody of their children forever. Civil Beat.

University of Hawaiʻi 6-Year Strategic Plan Approved. The University says the UH System Strategic Plan 2023–2029 – Hawaiʻi’s University for Today and Tomorrow “will guide the state’s only public higher education system and includes vision and mission statements, foundational principles and four imperatives with metrics to measure success.” Big Island Video News.

Topic of housing solution conference: Lessons Hawaii can learn from Finland. A conference hosted by Partners in Care, Bridging the Gap, and Hawaii Housing Affordability Coalition takes a different approach to tackling housing in Hawaii. Organizers said the Saturday event includes various forums and workshops on how Hawaii can adopt a “Housing First” approach to provide housing for all. Hawaii News Now.


Navy a no-show at Red Hill remediation roundtable so far. The Navy has yet to sign on to a roundtable convened by state and federal environmental regulators to share information and chart an action plan for remediating fuel contamination caused by the Navy’s Red Hill fuel facility, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Star-Advertiser.

Marines look to pull water out of the air to support operations. At Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe, the newly formed 3rd Marine Littoral Regiment is experimenting with new technologies to keep troops hydrated as they operate across far-flung islands and coastlines. Star-Advertiser.

The Miske Files: The FBI Is Investigating One Of Its Own. An FBI investigator was targeted by two search warrants as part of an ongoing criminal probe linked to the federal criminal charges against former Honolulu business owner Michael J. Miske Jr., who prosecutors allege controlled and directed a sprawling racketeering organization for most of the past two decades. Civil Beat.

City’s work to remove Haiku Stairs delayed. The fate of a long-closed metal staircase up a mountain ridge in Kaneohe that attracts trespassers to the spectacular, and at one time legally accessible, Stairway to Heaven hike remains uncertain more than a year after Mayor Rick Blangiardi and the Honolulu City Council committed to its removal. Star-Advertiser.

North Shore project gets OK to be built on stilts. A mile up the North Shore from where a house fell into the ocean in February, a new oceanfront development just received special approval from the county government. Star-Advertiser.

State rejects temporary barrier for North Shore homeowner. The state agency tasked with protecting Hawaii’s public beaches and coastal ecosystems says it can’t support a request from a Sunset Beach homeowner who dumped concrete onto the public beach to now install a temporary barrier, such as a so-called burrito, to protect his homes. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii food banks struggle to provide for growing need. With the holidays approaching, Hawaii food banks are still scrambling to meet the needs of families as household budgets take a hit from inflation. Star-Advertiser.

Update on Straub nurses contract negotiations. Nurses at Straub Hospital plans to picket on Tuesday. As they continue to head into work at Straub Medical Center, they head into what some may call a not so ideal scenario. The nurses have been working without a contract since November 1st. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Pool of police chief candidates narrowed down to 21. The Hawaii County Police Commission met Thursday to address the selection of a new chief, but the panel isn’t any closer to choosing the new head of the island’s law enforcement following Paul Ferriera’s retirement on Sept. 1. West Hawaii Today.

HPD officers undergo Crisis Intervention Team training. About 20 Hawaii Police Department officers underwent a 40-hour training program in Hilo this past week aimed at de-escalating the potential for danger in encounters with people experiencing mental health or addiction problems. Tribune-Herald.

Public invited to briefing about proposed update to vacation rental regulations. The proposed update will be introduced in January 2023 by Hawai‘i County Council members Ashley Kierkiewicz and Heather Kimball, who will host the Nov. 21 meeting via Zoom from 5:30-6:30 p.m. To participate, community members must register for a unique Zoom login. Big Island Now.

Hilo mall lease extension in limbo. The extension, which if granted to the mall, a subsidiary of Brookfield Properties, would extend the lease of 39 acres of Hawaiian homes land in Hilo from its current end date of Sept. 30, 2042, to Sept. 30, 2082. Tribune-Herald.

Kuakini subdivision pits Hawaiian families against each other. One family’s attempt to subdivide a 5.29-acre parcel off Kuakini Highway has escalated into a battle with longtime Native Hawaiian inhabitants of the area. West Hawaii Today.


Reports shed light on complaints against MPD chief. Police Chief John Pelletier likely violated the Maui County Violence in the Workplace policy by “yelling and swearing” during a meeting with a Maui Police Department business administrator, who left in tears, according to an investigation into allegations that Pelletier and others violated county policies. Maui News.

Legality of large Maui homeless sweep to be decided by high state court. Several residents of the Pu’uhonua O Kanaha encampment near Kanaha Beach Park sued Maui county, claiming they were denied due process and their constitutional rights were violated when officials seized and destroyed their property. Hawaii News Now.

Maui marine protection and research center proposed. The nonprofit associated with the Maui Ocean Center is proposing the construction of a four-story, $12 million building that would house a sea turtle hospital, coral nursery, research laboratories and classrooms on the aquarium’s property in Maalaea. Star-Advertiser.

UH Maui College Offers Free CNA Trainings across Maui County.
The University of Hawaiʻi Maui College is offering free training for individuals residing on Lānaʻi, Molokaʻi, and Maui (including Hāna in East Maui) to become Certified Nurse Aides during the spring 2023 semester. Classes run from Jan. 9 to May 12, and involve both online and in-person instruction. Maui Now.


Kaua‘i Police Department issues open carry permit under new guidelines
. After they revised their permitting process in response to the landmark Supreme Court ruling in State of New York v. Bruen, the Kaua‘i Police Department has begun issuing new open carry permits. Garden Island.

$90K in grants aim to make a 'big impact' for Kauaʻi farming education and longevity. Mālama Kauaʻi has partnered with the county's Office of Economic Development to distribute $90,000 in grants to support and expand locally produced food. Hawaii Public Radio.

Monday, October 17, 2022

Grim forecast for coral reefs, congressional ethics office calls for Kahele investigation, attorney general seeks to stop auction of Queen Liliuokalani articles, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2022 All Hawaii news all rights reserved
Hawaii coral reef ©2022 All Hawaii News
Half of all coral reefs could face permanent effects of climate change. Half of the world’s coral reefs could no longer be suitable for marine life by 2035. That’s according to the latest University of Hawaiʻi research looking into the worst-case scenarios of climate change on reef ecosystems. Hawaii Public Radio.Kauai Now.

Congressional Ethics Watchdog Calls For Ethics Investigation Into Kahele. No details were released about the allegations the Hawaii congressman might be facing, but his proxy voting record and ties to Hawaiian Airlines have drawn scrutiny. The Office of Congressional Ethics, the independent watchdog charged with investigating allegations of misconduct against House members and their staff, has called for an official inquiry into U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele. Civil Beat.

Governor Candidates On The Environment: Sharp Contrasts And A Little Overlap. Republican Duke Aiona emphasizes lower energy costs, while Democrat Josh Green stresses renewable and sustainable sources. Civil Beat.

Jill Tokuda Looks Like A Shoo-In For Congress. What Would She Do? The question is whether the former state senator, a Democrat, can be effective, especially as a first-term lawmaker in a House that’s expected to be in GOP control. Civil Beat.

State moves to block auction of items related to overthrow of Queen Liliʻuokalani. The state Department of the Attorney General has put the British auction house Bonhams on notice. At issue are items dating back to the Hawaiian monarchy overthrow that the state maintains belong to Hawaiʻi. Hawaii Public Radio.

Why Hawaii’s Language Access Office Is Having Trouble ‘Fulfilling Its Mission’ The state auditor says OLA “remains a partially formed organization” some 16 years after its establishment. Advocates say that’s keeping non-English speakers from getting much-needed services. Civil Beat.

Menstrual product distribution still uneven in Hawaii schools.
Full statewide implementation of the “menstrual equity” state legislation is turning out to be a more complex and delicate undertaking than even some lawmakers and education officials expected. Star-Advertiser.

GET medical exemption sought: Group says move would make state ‘a more attractive place for doctors’. In an effort to make health care more affordable and alleviate the state’s physician shortage, Grassroot Institute of Hawaii launched a petition urging the Hawaii Legislature to exempt medical services from the state’s general excise tax, or GET. Tribune-Herald.

As RSV cases rise, more people are hospitalized compared to COVID surges
. Cases of Respiratory Syncytial Virus — also known as RSV — are increasing in Hawaiʻi and 32 other states. There are other respiratory illnesses spreading as well, including rhinovirus and coronavirus. Hawaii Public Radio.

A deficit of mental health: Pandemic isn’t solely to blame, experts say; politics also a factor. Some  health care providers in Hawaii think the reason for the increase isn’t just the pandemic, citing a variety of symptoms such as stress, political conflict, work staffing shortages, insurance issues and because there’s less of a stigma for those who seek mental health services. Tribune-Herald.


Robberies, weapon crimes rise on Oahu as other major categories fall. Weapon violations, robberies and assaults are on the rise in Honolulu while other major crime categories have fallen off, compared with 2021, according to Hono­lulu police statistics obtained by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Star-Advertiser.

Power struggle festers over Aloha Stadium redevelopment. Mike McCartney, director of the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, claims that his agency is now in charge of redeveloping Aloha Stadium following more than a decade of work by the Stadium Authority, private consultants, state lawmakers and the state Department of Accounting and General Services. Star-Advertiser.

State wants to drop permit rules for employees of Waikiki ocean activity companies.
The state Department of Land and Natural Resources is looking to repeal rules that require surf instructors, outrigger canoe captains and other individuals who operate in Waikiki waters to obtain a state permit certifying they have the necessary skills and training, citing liability concerns and lack of “resources or expertise to continue conducting the testing and approval process.” Star-Advertiser.

Oahu voters to decide how to use city land conservation fund.
Proposed City Charter amendment No. 3 on the general election ballot asks if 5% of the fund should be expended to operate and maintain those acquired lands. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Ballot Proposal Would Make City Council Services Office A Permanent Agency. The office that performs many legislative duties for the council, including researching and drafting bills and resolutions, may finally get equal status with other agencies. Civil Beat.

Lawyer For Mitsunaga Firm Pleads Not Guilty To Bribing Kaneshiro. A lawyer for an engineering firm whose CEO is accused of bribing Honolulu’s prosecuting attorney pleaded not guilty on Friday to participating in the alleged scheme. Civil Beat.

Navy officials said repairs to a broken 36-inch water main at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam are still at least a week out. Iroquois Point Elementary to remain closed as repairs continue to military water system. Main breaks to the Navy’s water system Friday has left about 90,000 customers under a boil water advisory. Some customers have low water pressure while others have no water at all. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Plan to house the homeless living outside Waianae Boat Harbor. The Pu'uhonua O Wai'anae Farm Village is continuing their fight to end homelessness on Oahu. Village leaders held a groundbreaking ceremony on a project for the dozens of houseless people who called the Waianae Boat Harbor home for years. They will rehome approximately 250 people living in tents – many who are kupuna, and working families with children. KITV4.

Homelessness on public recreation land on Oʻahu an ongoing problem with few solutions. Officials with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources say there’s a long list of challenges and few solutions when it comes to homeless individuals who have taken up residence at O‘ahu’s Sand Island State Recreation Area. Big Island Now. Maui Now.  Garden Island.

LGBTQ+ tourism is thriving in Hawaii.
The National Gay Flag Football League’s Gay Bowl XXII Hawaii 2022 Flag Football Tournament, the largest LGBTQ+ event ever held in Honolulu, helped this year’s Honolulu Pride parade surpass the 2019 event, which was the state’s largest parade that year. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

Hawaiʻi Civil Defense Issues Message On Mauna Loa Activity. The Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense said it is closely monitoring the situation, in coordination with the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Big Island Video News. KITV4.

Estate, family seek answers in killing of Boy Scout. Court documents filed on behalf of the estate of the 11-year-old Boy Scout who was killed Aug. 28 when a firearm accidentally was discharged said the gun was an “AK-47 semi-automatic assault rifle.” Tribune-Herald.

Ready, set, vote! Ballots are expected to be mailed Wednesday and arrive in Big Island mailboxes shortly after that as the nation counts down to the Nov. 8 general election. West Hawaii Today.

‘The Most Important Decision’: Hawaii Police Commission Ponders Criteria For New Chief. With the hiring process set to begin Oct. 24, the police union is urging the commission to use the opportunity to pursue more ambitious goals. Civil Beat.

Bill would increase solar water heater tax credit. A bill increasing the tax credit for eligible homeowners who install a solar water heater will be heard Tuesday by the County Council Finance Committee. Bill 227 would increase the tax credit from $300 to $400 for owners of single-family dwellings, ohanas, farm dwellings and duplexes. West Hawaii Today.

Hāpuna Beach Park And Cabins Closed. A major water break has been reported at Hāpuna Beach State Recreation Area, and the park & cabin area are closed. Big Island Video News.


Sparks fly in contentious debate as Maui mayoral candidates vie for votes. In a debate Saturday night organized by Akaku Maui Community Media, incumbent Mayor Mike Victorino defended his record while retired Judge Richard Bissen accused Victorino of being a passive mayor. Hawaii News Now.

Bissen gets Carpenter’s Union endorsement; Victorino endorsed by HSTA; Kama Talk Story. Campaign updates from Maui County. Maui Now.

County to launch energy cost-savings program. Project to install more efficient lighting, sinks and other equipment. Maui County is embarking on a multimillion-dollar project with an international company in hopes of realizing $73 million in energy and water conservation cost during the first phase. Maui News. Hawaii News Now.

Dockless vehicles and parking ambassador program to be discussed in committee. The Maui Council’s Infrastructure and Transportation Committee on Monday will discuss a bill prohibiting a commercial system of short-term rentals of dockless vehicles, and a separate bill authorizing the implementation of a parking ambassador program.  Maui Now.

Pulelehua developer to prioritize affordable units in first phase of West Maui project. Mayor Michael Victorino announced today that the Maui County Council is in receipt of Bill 152, that will help to subsidize shovel-ready development of 100 affordable units in Pulelehua, planned for West Maui. Maui Now.


Kaua‘i mayoral candidates answer questions on drug treatment center, housing, evictions. The Garden Island spoke to mayoral candidates Derek Kawakami and Michael Roven Poai last week on some of the major issues facing the county. Garden Island.

Kaua‘i council candidates make their closing statements. The Garden Island asked the 14 County Council candidates to submit closing statements ahead of the mailing of ballots on Oct. 19. Twelve responded. Garden Island.

What are the Kaua‘i county ballot proposals? Along with picking their elected representatives, voters will have the chance to decide on the fate of four ballot proposals this election season. Garden Island. Kauai Now.

Hawaiian sea cucumbers being cultivated for export and fishpond restoration on Kauaʻi.
Kaua‘i Sea Farm, a commercial aquaculture business at the ancient Nomilo fishpond in Kalāheo. has partnered with the O‘ahu nonprofit Pacific American Foundation to cultivate loli as a high-value export product. Big Island Now. Kauai Now.