Showing posts with label food stamps. Show all posts
Showing posts with label food stamps. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Hawaii names ohia lehua official endemic tree, UH reinstates indoor masking, state misses out on $200M to feed children, more news from all the Hawaiian islands

copyright 2022 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Ohia lehua designated official Hawaii State Endemic Tree. State lawmakers passed Senate Bill 2059 during this year’s Legislative session to designate the tree, and Gov. David Ige Tuesday signed the bill into law at a ceremony at Washington Place. Star-Advertiser. Garden Island. KHON2.

Ige Extends Emergency SNAP Benefits Through July. The governor has signed a second emergency proclamation, extending the provision of federally increased allowances under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Civil Beat.

Health officials say lifted restrictions are not only driving up COVID cases, but also the flu. Health officials said flu cases are higher than it has been compared to the last couple of years when strict public health measures were in place. Hawaii News Now.

University of Hawaii reinstates indoor masking. Amid the statewide COVID-19 surge, Hawaii’s public schools have reported a ninth straight week of increases in campus cases, and the University of Hawaii, starting today, is reinstating an indoor mask requirement across its 10- campus system. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Hawaii public schools may need to prepare for shootings, says head of state board. Hawaii’s public school system has no specific policy requiring schools to prepare teachers or students for an active-shooter scenario. However, the head of the state Board of Education said Tuesday that the time has come to consider one. Star-Advertiser.

Report: Hawaiʻi missed out on $200 million in federal funding to feed children since 2000. Since 2000, Hawaiʻi has missed out on more than $200 million in federal funding for the state’s school meal programs, according to a new joint report released Tuesday. Maui Now. KITV4.

State sees banner year for tax revenues, but faces highly uncertain future. The state Council on Revenues expects a strong end to this fiscal year. But there are concerns for fiscal year 2023, which starts in July. The council projects Hawaiʻi will end the current fiscal year with a 28% growth in tax revenues over FY 2021.  Hawaii Public Radio.

New Hawaii State Hospital faces more delays. State health officials say they face additional delays in moving patients into the Hawaii State Hospital’s new, 144-bed psychiatric facility, after assuring state lawmakers in early April that all the patients would be moved in by this month. The state Department of Health now says the target date is the end of June. Star-Advertiser.

Native Hawaiians Face High Rates Of Diabetes. That Means More Need For Dialysis. The number of dialysis centers in the islands is increasing to meet the need as more patients suffer from kidney failure. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Oahu rail recovery plan advances at City Council. The new rail recovery plan that would notably shorten the route and delay the construction of the Pearl Highlands parking garage advanced out of the Honolulu City Council Transportation, Sustainability and Health Committee on Tuesday. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Creation of Honolulu urban trail part of $14 million tourism recovery plan. The Hawaii Tourism Authority is working on a plan to spend $14 million in COVID-19-era federal funding from the Economic Development Administration that includes development of a Honolulu urban trail that would use virtual reality and other smart features to connect people to points of interest and businesses along the path. Star-Advertiser.

Mandatory water restrictions this summer now appear avoidable. The Board of Water Supply thinks mandatory water restrictions might be avoidable this summer. It’s a promising development for residents who were bracing for forced restrictions and developers who were warned their projects could have been delayed by the Navy’s tainted water crisis. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Federal Aviation Administration moves to strip local freight carrier’s certification.
The Federal Aviation Administration announced Tuesday that it has proposed to revoke the air carrier certificate of Honolulu- based cargo airline Rhoades Aviation Inc. for what the agency called “numerous alleged safety violations.” Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Council matchups shaping up: 2 weeks before filing deadline, two incumbents have no challengers
. Of the nine County Council seats up for election this year, all but two incumbents have drawn challengers, with just two weeks remaining before the June 7 filing deadline. West Hawaii Today.

County seeks info about four torched Elderly Activities Division vehicles. Mayor Mitch Roth issued a statement Tuesday condemning the actions an arsonist or arsonists who on Sunday torched four Department of Parks and Recreation vehicles. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now

Drought unlikely to stop little fire ants. Pest species like little fire ants will likely not be deterred by the drought conditions expected for much of the island this summer. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Kuʻikahi Village’s plans for 202 workforce homes in Wailuku moves ahead. Kuʻikahi Village Project, which aims to build 202 workforce housing units on about 15 acres in Wailuku, cleared a significant hurdle recently.  Maui Now.

Maui Is Reconsidering What Constitutes ‘Affordable’ When It Comes To Housing. Even if families qualify for loans, monthly costs can be so high that they struggle to hold on to their homes in the long term. Civil Beat. Maui News.

Conservation-minded steward sought as future buyer for Maui’s Hāna Ranch. Bio-Logical Capital today announced it is seeking a new conservation-minded buyer to steward Hāna Ranch, a 3,600-acre working cattle ranch in east Maui. Maui Now.

Longtime Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee Colette Machado dies at 71. Former Office of Hawaiian Affairs Chair Colette Ma­chado of Molokai was remembered Tuesday as a passionate warrior driven to public service and dedicated to the betterment of the Native Hawaiian community. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.

Kauai

Boulders block beach-goers near Burns Field. State Department of Transportation personnel have blocked vehicle access to the perimeter road at Port Allen Airport (also known as Burns Field), upsetting residents who recreate on the facility’s makai side. Garden Island.

Wilcox Emergency Department updates completed. Dr. Monty Downs, retired following 50 years of service to Wilcox Health and the first emergency room doctor at Wilcox Medical Center, said the first emergency room was just an 18-foot-by-18-foot room with a stretcher, not a gurney, in the middle. Garden Island.

Officials hold blessing for new emergency department at Wilcox Medical Center. The $5.1 million renovation project includes two trauma resuscitation suites and several specialized care rooms, along with a dedicated behavioral health room equipped with state-of-the-art technology. Star-Advertiser.

Monday, April 18, 2022

Prices rise, workers quit, food stamps increase in Hawaii economy, COVID-19 wastewater monitoring to start this summer, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2022 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Shoppers and strollers in Waikiki ©2022 All Hawaii News
Why Businesses Are Passing Their Rising Costs On To Consumers. The price of groceries rose almost 12% in March compared with the same month a year ago, while gasoline prices increased almost 40%. Civil Beat.

A Record Number of Hawai‘i Workers Quit Their Jobs in 2021. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest data shows that 222,000 local employees had voluntarily resigned. In September alone, about 38,000 people quit – 6.6% of the local workforce and the highest rate for that month in the nation. Hawaii Business Magazine.

Amid growing need, extra food stamp benefits extended to end of May
. According to the Department of Human Services, nearly 200,000 people in Hawaii rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps. State officials say it is a 36% increase from prior to the pandemic. Hawaii News Now.

Bill would expedite farmland transfers. While two state agencies continue to vie over management of about 100,000 acres of state land set aside for agriculture, lawmakers are pushing a bill to expedite the transfer of those lands to support local farming and ranching. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii lawmakers still practicing gut-and-replace surgery on bills
. The Hawaii Supreme Court laid down a precedent-setting November ruling that invalidated a 2018 law stemming from a gut-and-replace maneuver, designating certain aspects of the practice as unconstitutional. Yet at least two examples of bills that could easily be considered an affront to the court’s decision popped up recently at the Legislature. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Tourism Authority is operating on an extremely tight deadline to award its largest contract to supply destination management services and promote Hawaii to the U.S. market, the state’s most important visitor source market. Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau has always had HTA’s top contract and is expected to bid for the next one. Star-Advertiser.

Office of Hawaiian Affairs might get more of what it’s owed from the state of Hawaii.
A bill that the House of Representatives approved unanimously Tuesday would raise an annual sum the state pays OHA to $21.5 million, up from $15.1 million, as another interim effort to satisfy a state obligation rooted in Hawaii’s Constitution. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii public schools could soon offer free menstrual products. State legislators are close to passing Senate Bill 2821, which would appropriate about $1 million to the Department of Education to provide menstrual pads and tampons because many students can’t afford them. Hawaii News Now.

Bills target abandoned cars: ‘Big penalty’ sought for those who leave the vehicles. House Bills 1411 through 1414 propose harsher penalties for owners of derelict vehicles that could generate millions of dollars for the state per year. Tribune-Herald.

Monitoring for COVID-19 in Hawaii wastewater expected to start this summer. A growing number of studies show the value of wastewater monitoring not only as an early detection system for trends in coronavirus cases in a community, but for the presence of variants such as BA.2. and other potential mutations on the horizon. Star-Advertiser.

COVID cases likely three times more than reported. During a livestream on Friday, infectious disease expert and Senior Fellow in the Research Program at East-West Center on Oahu Dr. Tim Brown speculated cases could be underreported “by about a factor of three.” Tribune-Herald.

Oahu

Ikaika Anderson’s Honolulu City Council resignation raises questions in lieutenant governor race. Ikaika Anderson is prepared to explain to voters why he resigned his Windward City Council seat in 2020 saying he wanted to focus on caring for his Waimanalo grandparents who raised him, but ended up working for a mason’s union job that he left after nine months. Star-Advertiser.

Public weighs in on Ala Wai flood-control proposals. Under consideration is dredging the canal, adding raised walls along its banks and adding earthen/silt berms to divert floodwaters into Ala Wai Park, the golf course and neighboring school grounds, partially restoring the area’s former wetlands and kalo paddies. Star-Advertiser.

Coming back from a crime at nonprofit ʻŌlelo Community Media. Roger McKeaugue joined ʻŌlelo Community Media in April 2021 as head of the nonprofit at a delicate time. In the previous month, a former vice president had pleaded guilty to federal charges of embezzling money from the organization, including CARES Act funding. Hanalei Apioalani was sentenced to 46 months in prison. Hawaii Public Radio.

Developer of Hawaii Ocean Plaza gives update on project. The city of Honolulu has cited a development project for not taking care of its build site along Kapiolani Boulevard. The complaint involves the homeless visiting a two story building on the property, overgrown weeds and a broken fence. This comes as the developer missed key deadlines for permits. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Bugs still being worked out of EPIC: Some building permits still stuck in the system. Hawaii County continues to work the bugs out of its online building permit system, but some testifiers to the county Cost of Government Commission aren’t convinced it’s happening fast enough. West Hawaii Today.

Council to view presentation on ‘dark sky’ initiatives. Hawaii County could save money and attract tourists by reducing light pollution, according to a presentation by a Big Island activist to be heard this week by the County Council. Tribune-Herald.

Ige releases $1.5M for Puako sewer plans. A long-anticipated project to improve water quality and protect the coral reef by replacing cesspools at Puako with a sewer system is finally moving forward with the announcement Friday that Gov. David Ige has released $1.5 million to get the design work started. West Hawaii Today.

Honokaa cockfight draws hundreds: Alleged organizer arrested; 21 chickens killed. According to a Tribune-Herald search of previous stories and media releases by the Hawaii Police Department, the last time a cockfighting arrest ended up with criminal charges on the Big Island was on March 30, 2019, also in Honokaa. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Months after social host law took effect, no citations issued. Questions surround enforcement of law, which police chief calls ‘unconstitutional’. No citations have been issued under a county law holding adult hosts accountable for underage drinking at house parties on Maui, more than six months since the measure was implemented. Maui News.

Kama plans two changes to county’s Taser rules, slated to be heard Friday. Council Member Tasha Kama in a news release said that the planned changes include consolidating the county’s administrative responsibilities for electric gun dealer licensing and clarifying the business insurance requirements for electric gun sellers. Maui Now.

Cleaning This Polluted Maui Harbor Requires Money, Land And Oysters. The County Council will vote on whether to approve $9.5 million for a state-of-the art wastewater treatment plant in Maalaea. Civil Beat. Maui News.

Maui airport sees faster processing, fewer disorderlies in wake of Safe Travels. The leader of Maui district airports said Kahului Airport processing times and disorderly traveler incidents have subsided since Hawaiʻi’s Safe Travels program was lifted three weeks ago.  Maui Now.

Kauai

Kaua‘i legislators return donations tied to bribery figure
. Following a February bribery scandal, some Kaua‘i lawmakers have made moves to distance themselves from money tied to the central figure in the case. Garden Island.

Owner reunited with stolen canoe on Kauai after weeks-long search. A canoe stolen on Kauai in early April has been found and returned to its rightful owner. Hawaii News Now.


Monday, May 18, 2020

Hawaii-based ships join saber-rattling in the South China Sea; Waikiki, Maui beaches reopen; state pension fund takes hit; food stamp, Medicaid applications jump, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

The Independence-variant littoral combat ships USS Montgomery (LCS 8), bottom, and USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10) operate in the South China Sea. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Chris Roys/Released)
Navy sends subs to sea as message to China. The Pacific Fleet Submarine Force took the unusual step this month of announcing that all of its forward-deployed subs were simultaneously conducting “contingency response operations” at sea in the Western Pacific — downplaying the notion that Navy forces have been hampered by COVID-19. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Setting Aside Virus Relief Funds For Unemployment. Hawaii lawmakers plan to set aside more than half of the money the state received in federal coronavirus relief money to bolster the state’s unemployment insurance fund. Associated Press.

Hawaii pension fund suffers worst quarterly loss since 2002. The state Employees’ Retirement System investments tumbled 9.5% and the fund’s assets, which include contributions and distributions, shrank by nearly $1.8 billion, to $16.2 billion, according to a report presented virtually to ERS trustees Tuesday by investment adviser Meketa Investment Group. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Medicaid Applications Soar Amid Widespread Job Losses. The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the fragility of Hawaii’s acclaimed health insurance system that relies on employer-sponsored plans. Civil Beat.

Number of people on food stamps in Hawaii swells by 18,000 in a single month. While Hawaii’s economy is slowly reopening, tens of thousands of people remain out of work — and many are facing tough decisions about how to make ends meet. Hawaii News Now.

Consumers turn toward local produce. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased interest in buying locally sourced produce. Star-Advertiser.

Sunbathers grace the shores once again on Oahu, Maui. Oahu and Maui County residents flocked to the beaches Saturday, after the month-long ban on sunbathing and relaxing on the beach was lifted. Hawaii News Now.

COVID-19 restrictions imperil Hawaii vacation rentals. Government regulations combined with softening travel demand ultimately might cause Hawaii’s vacation rental industry to shrink. Many owners don’t have the deep pockets of hotel corporations or access to as many government bailouts. Star-Advertiser.

Where in the World Do We Send Our Recycling? California received the largest amount of recyclables from Hawaii in 2019, according to public records. Civil Beat.

 Nearly 300 out-of-state visitors came to Hawaii by air Saturday. Nearly 1,000 passengers came to Hawaii on Saturday, including 307 returning residents and 285 visitors. Star-Advertiser.

1 New Case in Hawai‘i Brings Total to 640 Cases, Nearly 92% Recovered. As of noon on Sunday, May 17, 2020, there are 640 cases of COVID-19 identified in Hawaiʻi with one new case in the state–on Hawaiʻi Island. Maui Now.

Oahu

A California man has been charged with violating the state’s mandatory quarantine for arriving passengers after citizens reported he posted images of himself at various locations across Oahu, state officials said today. Star-Advertiser.

Calif. man vlogs while breaking quarantine rules, gets arrested. Documenting the violation of a state law on social media isn’t the brightest idea, but those posts are coming in handy to law enforcement as they continue to arrest incoming travelers who break the mandatory 14-day quarantine. Hawaii News Now.

Visitor arrested for brazen quarantine violation. The California visitor was taken into custody at the airport - after blogging about his Oahu adventures on social media for more than two weeks. KITV4.

New York Tourist Arrested After Posting Hawaii Beach Photos. A tourist from New York was arrested for allegedly violating Hawaii's traveler quarantine after he posted on Instagram photos of himself sunbathing and carrying a surfboard, state officials said. Associated Press.

Social distancing remains even with beaches, tennis courts back open. Day two of beaches being open on Oahu and lots of folks headed out to Ala Moana on May 17th. KHON2.

City says come June 5, restaurants can open for dine-in service. Mayor Caldwell announced Friday night that Gov. Ige has approved the opening of restaurants to dine-in services with certain restrictions on June 5. Hawaii News Now.

Salvation Army, Goodwill provide more than clothes to Hawaii residents. Some Oahu retailers re-opened their stores on Friday, but there are some retailers who provide more for the community than just clothes. KHON2.

Churches prepare strategy to open as state starts to re-open. As the state starts to re-open, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has allowed drive-in church services to take place which started last Friday. KHON2.

Honolulu Spared From Paying A Hefty Price For Lack Of Trash. Its garbage-for-power deals address extreme events beyond the city’s control. Civil Beat.

Kailua shops depend on local support to stay afloat. Kailua town is a little more quiet these days, without so many tourists, due to travel restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island


Blurring the lines: Marzo campaign doesn’t report lava mask giveaway. Mayoral candidate Ikaika Marzo has been posting videos of himself on his “Marzo for Mayor” Facebook campaign page traveling the island giving away masks that were originally donated for the 2018 Puna lava flow crisis. West Hawaii Today.

Blurring the lines: Roth’s charity work raises questions. Mayoral candidate Mitch Roth removed a post from his Facebook campaign page after questions were raised about the portrayal of volunteers wearing his campaign T-shirts while helping at a nonprofit feeding station at a county facility. West Hawaii Today.

Fewer patients, less revenue: COVID-19 crisis suppresses visits to Big Isle hospitals, clinics. Fewer patients are visiting Big Island emergency rooms and urgent care clinics due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and that is having a negative impact on their revenue. Tribune-Herald.

South Kohala development progressing; Waikoloa Plaza on target to open in summer 2021. A $370 million South Kohala development is making progress with the long-awaited Waikoloa Plaza on schedule to open next summer. West Hawaii Today.

Progress on Pohoiki boat ramp. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources will soon hire a consultant to conduct a feasibility study about potential locations for the Pohoiki boat ramp. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Council OKs flat property tax rates. Despite many lower or flat property tax rates approved Friday by the Maui County Council, higher property valuations certified before the pandemic hit will bring $18 million more in county revenues for the next fiscal year that begins July 1. Maui News.

First Reading For Maui County’s FY2021 Budget Moved to May 26. Council Chair Alice L. Lee, who made the announcement, said it is to allow for inclusion of additional funding from the state and federal government. Maui Now.

Hawaii’s First Case Of Rat Lungworm This Year Found On Maui. The Department of Health said there were nine reported cases in 2019. Associated Press.

Maui resident hospitalized with Hawaii’s first rat lungworm infection of 2020. Health officials said Friday that Hawaii’s first confirmed case of rat lungworm disease in 2020 has been detected on Maui. Star-Advertiser.

Thousands see Maui police post on quarantine violation; Colo. visitor arrested. Maui police said a 23-year-old Colorado visitor was arrested today in Kula for violating the 14-day mandatory travel quarantine after a police social media post asking for public help to find her reached hundreds of thousands of people and generated thousands of comments. Maui News.

Kauai

Hanalei reopens. Ching Young Village Shopping Center and Hanalei Center shopping center are now open, giving the town a more cheery and uplifting feel to it. Garden Island.

USDA Grant Throws A Lifeline To Kauai Farmers Hit By Pandemic. With farmer’s markets and restaurants closed by the coronavirus, two nonprofits set up programs to distribute the farmers’ harvest directly to consumers and feeding programs. Civil Beat.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Native fishponds threatened by climate change, state budget explained, food stamp decrease on Big Island, police property seizures audit delayed, drones for Maui police, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaiian saltwater fishponds ©2018 All Hawaii News
Climate change poses a looming threat to Hawaiian fishponds, which have undergone a renaissance in recent years, University of Hawaii researchers have concluded. Star-Advertiser.

Sea Level Rise Report Accepted by New State Climate Commission. Maui Now.

Hawaii tourism outlook already looking strong based on airlift numbers. 2018 will come in like a lion for the Hawaii tourism industry, based on how many airline seats will fly here just in January. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Is Still Waiting For An Audit Of Police Property Seizures. A report that was due before the 2017 legislative session is now expected sometime during the 2018 session. Civil Beat.

The new year is pivotal for rail, politics and the TMT. Sudden shifts at the top of the government hierarchy in Hawaii will ripple across the political landscape in 2018, starting with the marquee races for governor and lieutenant governor. Star-Advertiser.

An Inside Look At Ige’s Request For Millions More In Education Spending. It’s far less than the DOE sought, but there’s hope for “more of a focus on education” in state government. Civil Beat.

Hawaii's minimum wage went up up to $10.10 per hour starting New Year's Day. Hawaii News Now.

Commentary: Trying to understand state budget involves a whole lot of dollars, but little sense. Star-Advertiser.

Strong Close for Hawaii Bank Employees, Not Shareholders. The top five banks in the state are giving their employees bonuses of a thousand dollars or more—and boosting their minimum wages to at least 15 dollars an hour. But for shareholders, it’s a different story. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii to participate in AT&T public safety network. The project, called FirstNet, will provide first responders with their own dedicated network to help them connect to the critical information. Pacific Business News.

In addition to the regular monthly test of the outdoor emergency siren on Tuesday, the state will also be conducting its attack warning siren test for the second time. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Kualoa Ranch plans to expand operations. A local ranch popular for its recreational activities and scenic tours wants to expand but needs city approval to lift restrictions on its operations. Star-Advertiser.

The number of building permit requests for large-scale houses on Oahu has grown in the last two months, according to an informal count provided by the city Department of Planning and Permitting. Star-Advertiser.

Why Isn’t Honolulu Helping Businesses Hurt By Rail Construction? The City Council passed two measures to aid businesses along the rail line but never provided any money. Civil Beat.

Happy New Year! Prepare to pay more in 2018 to register your car, ride the bus. Hawaii News Now.

The price of a city bus ride will rise in the new year. Effective New Year's Day, the one-way fare for adults will go up by a quarter to $2.75. Hawaii News Now.

Petitions are circulating in the community of Kailua to save Pali Lanes, a bowling alley slated for demolition early next year. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

The number of food stamp recipients on Hawaii Island dropped slightly in 2017, continuing an ongoing trend for the federal program. While 37,964 people in on the Big Island benefited from the federal Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program — often referred to as food stamps — by the end of November 2016, only 37,349 did so by the same time in 2017. Tribune-Herald.

Sea level forecast alarming: Report predicts hundreds on Big Island would be displaced, great economic loss. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Maui Police Department received funding from the FY16 Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant to implement a Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems program. Maui Now.

The state Real Estate Commission will hold its monthly committee meetings Jan. 10 on Maui as part of its Neighbor Island outreach program. Maui News.

Kauai

Tiny houses could bring big relief. Tiny houses could be a solution for Kauai’s tense rental market, as both landlords and renters on Kauai are stressed out about keeping a roof over their heads. Garden Island.

Kauai Film Academy opens new training facility. Bright fuchsias and shades of blue are dancing out of the once-empty space next to the Kauai Society of Artists’ gallery at Kukui Grove Center. Garden Island.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Finance Committee members yanked as special session for rail funding starts today, SNAP program scrutinized, Maui to pay $10.7M in time share lawsuit, Ka'u shelter falls short, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Kauai taro fields © 2017 All Hawaii News
A state program that has preserved more than 30,000 acres of private land in Hawaii for public benefit over a decade might not preserve much this year because of a paperwork mishap that the Legislature declined to correct in April. Star-Advertiser.

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Two members of the powerful House Finance Committee were abruptly replaced Sunday in a partial House reorganization launched just a day before the start of a high-stakes special session to try to bail out the financially troubled Honolulu rail project. Star-Advertiser.

A bill that would bail out Honolulu’s floundering rail project with about $2.4 billion from Oahu taxpayers and hotel guests statewide contains one key provision missing from earlier proposals: a requirement that the Hawaii State Auditor conduct a sweeping audit of the rail project and its manager, the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation. Civil Beat.

When the Legislature takes up a $2.4 billion bill to bail out the struggling Honolulu rail project on Monday, the carefully crafted deal faces three main obstacles. Civil Beat.

A bill requiring the neighbor islands to help bail out Honolulu’s over-budget rail project is roundly opposed by Hawaii County officials, the chambers of commerce, the hotel industry, many Big Island residents and all four of the island’s state senators. West Hawaii Today.

Some neighbor island lawmakers are agitating against plans to increase the hotel room tax statewide to pump more money into Honolulu’s financially troubled rail project, and their resistance could jeopardize what is expected to be a close vote in the state Senate this week on a multibillion-dollar rail bailout package. Star-Advertiser.

An undercurrent of tension between the Honolulu mayor and lawmakers has spilled over into outright mistrust over a huge money gap. KHON2.

Lawmakers will gather at the state Capitol Monday for a special legislative session on how to fund Honolulu's troubled rail project. Hawaii News Now.

The state legislature is set to open a special session on Monday to decide how to pay for Honolulu’s 10-billion dollar rail project. Hawaii Public Radio.

A special session starts on Monday for the proposal to bail out Honolulu’s rail project. KHON2.

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation invited the public to a viewing of the country's first fully-automated, driverless train. KITV.

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The Hawaii system that administers federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program dollars, formerly called food stamps, has allowed at least one recipient to accumulate more than $20,000 in unused benefits. Star-Advertiser.

DNA leads Army to declare 3 Black Hawk crew members dead after crash. KHON2.

Oahu

Frustrated by how long it has taken the Police Commission to pick a new chief, some Honolulu City Council members are suggesting it may be time to consider changing the law to allow the mayor to make the selection. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s growing homeless problem has prompted the state’s largest health care companies to join forces with the city to provide medical services, respite and housing to some of Oahu’s most needy residents. Star-Advertiser.

Last week, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed into law yet another bill that expands the boundaries of Honolulu’s “sit-lie” ban — a series of ordinances that prohibit people from sitting or lying on sidewalks and in pedestrian malls. Civil Beat.

Would you let a homeless person live in your backyard? What if you got paid to do it? Hawaii News Now.

Wind developers looking to build on Oahu are now required to give the public more opportunity to be heard. Star-Advertiser.

A woman who lives in Nuuanu is on a mission — to turn part of Aala Park in Downtown Honolulu into a dog park, which she tells us will also help revitalize the neighborhood. KHON2.

Unearthing Hickam’s 14 ‘unknowns’ Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island


Hawaii County has withheld payment of more than $900,000 to the general contractor of the Ka‘u District Gym and Shelter because the structure isn’t up to code for a hurricane shelter. Tribune-Herald.

The HELCO-Hu Honua biomass power purchase agreement is being appealed to the Hawaii Supreme Court. Big Island Video News.

Drivers will have to wait a little longer before using the latest improvements to Saddle Road,  the Daniel K. Inouye Highway. Tribune-Herald.

Volunteers keep Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden alive. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Maui County has been ordered to refund $10.7 million to two time-share owners associations in a legal dispute over amended assessments billed nearly a decade after the original assessments were made. Maui News.

A state judge has rebuked Maui County attorneys and property tax officials for collecting $10.7 million in improper taxes from owners of a Kaanapali time-share because the owners challenged the county’s tax policy. Star-Advertiser.

The hearings officer in a contested case proceeding over East Maui stream flows has recommended restoring 26.5 million gallons a day to 12 streams, which East Maui taro farmers, Native Hawaiian cultural practitioners and their attorneys complained still represented “a gross imbalance” in water allocation in favor of Alexander & Baldwin. Maui News.

A poll taken at the end of a Haiku Community Association meeting Thursday night showed residents evenly divided (about 20 to each side) on whether to allow more vacation rentals in the community. Maui News.

Dozens of residents gathered Saturday at the West Maui Senior Center in Lahaina to learn about and give feedback on the impending update of the West Maui Community Plan. Maui News.

Six Hawaiian green sea turtles (honu) were released off the coast of Maui during a private ceremony on Thursday, marking the conclusion of the turtles’ residency at the Maui Ocean Center’s Aquarium. Maui Now.

Hawaii Public Radio announced the completion of its relocated Maui transmitters on August 8. Hawaii Public Radio.

Kauai

Flights to Kauai will increase by 42.6 percent in 2018; concerns loom over too many visitors. Garden Island.

Public schools across Kauai have been back in class for nearly a month, but some students are still sweating it out because of high temperatures and a lack of air conditioners in their classrooms. Garden Island.

Kauai’s farm-to-school pilot program, happening at two public charter schools on the island, has received a $170,000 commitment from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. Garden Island.

Kauai Humane Society has cats coming out of its ears. The shelter is filled to capacity with all types of animals right now. Garden Island.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Tulsi Gabbard feels the Bern of Democratic National Committee politics, Clinton opens campaign office, Caldwell wants $21.6M for parks, term limits mulled in Legislature and Hawaii County Council, water for Kauai ag park, Maui tourism head retires, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2016 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Gabbard on the 2012 campaign trail © 2016 All Hawaii News





U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard resigned her post as a vice chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee on Sunday, allowing her to formally endorse Bernie Sanders for president. Star-Advertiser.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard says she’s resigning the Democratic National Committee to support Bernie Sanders for president. Associated Press.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard announced Sunday that she is supporting Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders for president. The Democrat from Hawaii will resign her position as vice chair of the Democratic National Committee so that she can actively endorse Sanders. Civil Beat.

In a bold political move, Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard today announced she is resigning as Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee effective immediately, so that she can endorse Senator Bernie Sanders to be the next President of the United States. Big Island Video News.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard resigned from her Democratic National Committee post on Sunday to endorse presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard rejected the notion that intra-party squabbles with the Democratic National Committee led to her resignation from the organization and her endorsement of Bernie Sanders. Politico.

Democratic National Committee Vice Chair Tulsi Gabbard resigned from her post on Sunday to endorse Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, following months of rising tensions within the group. Reuters.

Former U.S. Sen.Daniel Akaka and former Hawaii Governors George Ariyoshi, John Waihee and Ben Cayetano will speak this Sunday about the “importance of caucusing for Hillary on March 26th.” Civil Beat.

A ranch, a sugar cane plantation owner and a wealthy investor trying to start a dairy farm have received state tax credits under a program that rewards preservation of privately owned farmland in Hawaii. The three entities — Parker Ranch, Alexander & Baldwin Inc. and Pierre Omidyar — acquired $1.5 million in state tax credits for making investments in agricultural operations in 2014, according to a recent state Department of Agriculture report to the Legislature. Star-Advertiser.

Should members of the Hawaii Legislature be term-limited? The Hawaii Senate Judiciary committee has scheduled a hearing Wednesday at the Capitol on Senate Bill 2753, which calls for exactly that. Civil Beat.

Hawaii legislators are exploring ways to bring back more than 1,300 inmates housed in an Arizona prison operated by the Corrections Corp. of America. Star-Advertiser.

Legislation urges more to use food stamps. Tribune-Herald.

Key lawmakers are wavering on whether they will require law enforcement agencies to test hundreds of unprocessed rape kits that have sat in county storage facilities for years and sometimes decades. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii has no law requiring government agencies to take proper care of public records. But that could change under a bill now moving through the Hawaii Legislature. Civil Beat.

A bill that would transfer $3 million from the state tourism special fund to support travel expenses for the University of Hawaii athletics program advanced through three senate committees Friday. Pacific Business News.

With less than five months to go before medical marijuana dispensaries can open in Hawaii, business owners could be facing unique obstacles in a state of islands separated by federal waters. Associated Press.

A bill allowing licensed clinical psychologists to prescribe medication in Hawaii cleared two state Senate hearings this week. Tribune-Herald.

By a vote of 88 to 30, a Native Hawaiian constitution was adopted Friday by participants in the Nai Aupuni aha, or convention. Civil Beat.

A constitutional convention of Native Hawaiians has adopted a governing document that will go out to a vote for ratification, the organization behind the gathering announced. Associated Press.

Oahu

Mayor Kirk Caldwell will announce that he will seek $21.6 million for parks projects from the Honolulu City Council during a no-frills State of the City address tonight. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell plans to give his fourth State of the City address on Monday at Mission Memorial Auditorium by Honolulu Hale. Civil Beat.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell will deliver his fourth State of the City address on Monday. KHON2.

Old Case Sheds New Light On Police Major’s Domestic Violence Past. Honolulu Police officials pushing to promote Maj. Ryan Borges never mentioned another time the cops were called and his wife ended up in the hospital. Civil Beat.

Hawaii

Eight is apparently not enough for Kohala Councilwoman Margaret Wille, who is proposing a charter amendment to increase council members’ terms to three consecutive four-year stints. West Hawaii Today.

Battling dengue outbreak, Hawaii faces small staff, pesticide fears. Associated Press.

Hawaii’s last remaining native crow species, extinct in the wild for about 14 years, will begin to be released from a captive breeding program in September, with a dozen in all to be offered freedom by year’s end to seed what biologists hope will be their comeback. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Terryl Vencl has led the Maui Visitors Bureau through the crippling lows of the Great Recession to the record-breaking highs of today. After 13 years, though, the longtime executive director plans to retire later this year. Maui News.

Neighbor Island medical equipment companies are bracing for change as new Medicare reimbursements take effect this year. Maui News.

Resort installs photovoltaic system. Maui News.

Kauai

Access to water was a major problem for the first phase of the Kilauea Community Agricultural Park. But no longer. Garden Island.

Council members on Wednesday put the brakes on passing a bill that would regulate lobbying on Kauai in order to answer a few lingering questions and to have a full council present for the decision. Garden Island.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Hawaii vies for Obama presidential library, Waikiki homeless rousted, Thirty Meter Telescope permits delayed, more top government and political news from all the Hawaiian Islands

White House courtesy photo
Obama reflecting, courtesy White House
The state of Hawaii submitted a bid Friday to become the home of the Barack Obama Presidential Library, officials said. The "request for qualifications" submittal ­­— the first step in what's expected to be a heated competition for the library — included such information as site details, transportation access and community information designed to demonstrate a capacity to successfully build and maintain a presidential library. Star-Advertiser.

While 43 states and the District of Columbia experienced drops in the number of low-income residents receiving federal food stamps, Hawaii and six other states saw their food stamp enrollments increase between March 2013 and March of this year. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu
Two new bills being proposed by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell would give his administration further ammunition to conduct his "compassionate disruption" campaign to remove the homeless from the sidewalks of Waikiki. Star-Advertiser.

Nightly Migration: Homeless Chased From Waikiki — for a Few Hours. Recent sweeps by city crews disrupt street people's lives and clear out the parks in the early morning hours, but are they effective? Civil Beat.

Civil Beat reporter Nick Grube talks about covering the homeless situation in Waikiki for his current story.

Since 2009, delays from awarding contracts too early and court-ordered halts on construction have already cost taxpayers at least $116 million to help build Oahu's rail transit line. Now, rail officials find themselves in yet another race against time to avoid yet another round of costly delays — this time heading into 2015, when construction on the 20-mile rail line is supposed to ramp up in the heart of Honolulu. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu Department of Public Safety canceled visitation hours at the Women's Community Correctional Center in Kailua on Sunday. Officials say visitations were canceled at WCCC due to staffing shortages. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii

Kohala Councilwoman Margaret Wille wants the county administration to yank a bid solicitation for a waste reduction facility, saying the specifications were written to favor a waste-to-energy plant. West Hawaii Today.

The outgoing commander at Pohakuloa Training Area called the 133,000-acre facility “an amazing place to work.” Lt. Col. Eric Shwedo made the comment as he relinquished command to Lt. Col. Jacob Peterson in a ceremony Friday morning at the Army installation’s theater. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii’s Board of Land and Natural Resources deferred a key decision for a $1.3 billion telescope project, saying the state needs more time to explore legal issues. Associated Press.

OHA CEO Kamana‘opono Crabbe offered testimony to the Board of Land and Natural Resources concerning the TMT project on Mauna Kea. Hawaii Independent.

Connections New Century Public Charter School is taking its battle to build a Kaumana campus to court. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Maui County Clerk Danny Mateo has until Tuesday to determine whether there's merit to objections to the mayoral candidacies of Neldon Mamuad and Nelson Waikiki Jr. Maui News.

Mayor Alan Arakawa has endorsed Hawaii Independent Party gubernatorial candidate Mufi Hannemann, the candidate's campaign announced Friday. Maui News.

Kauai

JoAnne Georgi has had enough. The Eleele resident, who ran unsuccessfully for a state House District 16 seat in 2006 and state Senate seat in 2008, said she is now running for a Kauai County Council seat to bring a new voice to the seven-member board. Garden Island.

Repeal of a junior kindergarten program and a change in age requirements for entering kindergarten are contributing to a shortage of open slots at Kauai preschools. Associated Press.