Showing posts with label immigrants. Show all posts
Showing posts with label immigrants. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Hawaii roads among the worst, Honolulu homeless face court-ordered treatment, Maui police officer arrested, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Saddle Road on Hawaii Island ©2019 All Hawaii News
Hawaii remains 47th worst in assessment of state highways. The worst urban interstate pavement conditions in the country and a low mark for spending per mile left Hawaii ranked 47th among states in a recent survey of highway performance. Star-Advertiser.

Expert: Trade war could impact Hawaii construction projects. The escalating trade war between the U.S. and China could lead to a shakeout in Hawaii construction industry, a real estate expert predicts. Hawaii News Now.

Air Travel’s Carbon Footprint Takes A Big Environmental Toll In Hawaii. Carbon emissions from planes are only now starting to get some of the attention as other troubling side effects caused by soaring numbers of tourists. Civil Beat.

Fewer Students in UH Classrooms Than a Decade Ago. It was back to school Monday for nearly 50,000 University of Hawaii students across the state. Total enrollment has been declining over the last decade, and officials have been trying to reverse the trend. Hawaii Public Radio.

Fixed Broadband Speeds Up in 2019. The Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Cable Television Division has issued its 2019 Report on Fixed Wireline Broadband Speeds, which builds upon data included in the 2018 Report on Fixed Wireline Broadband Speeds released in June of 2018. Big Island Now.

Hawaiian-Emperor Seamounts ecosystems recovering after trawling, report finds. For decades the sunken islands northwest of Hawaii proved a popular draw for fishing and trawling, with crews dragging heavy nets across the fertile peaks. In the process, the nets scraped the real estate to devastating effect. Star-Advertiser.


Homeless people with mental illness to get court-ordered help. Officials with the city, state and the Institute for Human Services are teaming up on a new approach to deal with homeless people with mental health issues by trying to get court-ordered help for the first of potentially hundreds of homeless people on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Invests $500,000 To Reach Hardest-To-Serve Homeless People. The mayor is hoping state and federal agencies will help fund the effort to help homeless people, whether they want it or not. Civil Beat.

State’s only psychiatric street medicine team gets $500,000 from city. The city has awarded the state’s only psychiatric street medicine team $500,000 to help get more homeless people with mental illness off the streets and into treatment. Hawaii News Now.

City aims to help mentally ill, addicted homeless. KHON2.


Katherine Kealoha’s Relatives Demand New Civil Trial Because Of Her Alleged Fraud. A motion seeks to overturn a $658,000 judgment in favor of the former city prosecutor, who was recently convicted of trying to frame her uncle. Civil Beat.

Katherine Kealoha’s relatives point to her conviction in bid for new civil trial. Hawaii News Now.


State agency approves 80-acre solar project near UH West Oahu. The state Public Utilities Commission has approved a 12.5-megawatt solar project with a 50-megawatt-hour energy storage system in West Oahu, according to the Hawaiian Electric Co. Star-Advertiser.

City and County to hold workshops on sea level rise and climate change. The Department of Planning and Permitting is holding a series of pop-up workshops to gather input on how climate change and sea level rise will affect the area between Kahala and Pearl City, also known as the Primary Urban Center. KHON2.

Kailua Town Farmers’ Market finds temporary home. The popular Kailua Town Farmers’ Market is moving to the Pali Lanes parking lot, starting this Sunday, after getting booted from the elementary school parking lot it had been using for years. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu’s first bikeshare is raising its fares. After more than two years in operation, Bikeshare Hawaii, the nonprofit that manages Biki, has raised some of its fares while extending a new discount to low-income residents. Star-Advertiser.

One neighborhood’s loss is another’s gain as HPU moves its Downtown campus. Hawaii Pacific University students headed back to school Monday to a very different downtown campus. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island

First accomplice sentenced in fatal shooting of police officer. The man who tipped off police to Justin Waiki’s whereabouts, witnessed the fatal shooting of Hawaii Police Department Officer Bronson Kaliloa and then gave the suspected shooter a ride from the scene last summer was sentenced to prison. West Hawaii Today.

Naalehu sewer bill scofflaws reap fines, warrants. Some Naalehu residents who haven’t been paying their sewer bills have found themselves slapped with fines and penalties, and even warrants taken out against them. West Hawaii Today.

First day of contraflow ‘very smooth’. A new traffic pattern on Highway 130 did not cause significant delays Monday morning despite previous complaints about the project. Tribune-Herald.

Mauna Kea Access Attempt Denied. A handful of Hawaiian beneficiaries in vehicles, and some on foot, were blocked from traversing the Mauna Kea Access Road on Monday morning. Big Island Video News.


Maui police officer arrested following reports of inappropriate conduct, abuse of authority. Maui police arrested one of their own tonight at the Kahului Airport on the strength of an arrest warrant based on information gathered in an ongoing criminal investigation. Star-Advertiser.

Maui Police Arrest Officer Brandon Saffeels, Victims’ Attorney Says Women Need to Step Forward. Maui Now.

Maui officer accused of misconduct arrested after stepping off flight. A Maui police officer accused of attempted perjury among other charges has been arrested amid an ongoing criminal investigation, Maui police confirmed Monday evening. Hawaii News Now.

Maui police officer arrested for perjury and witness tampering. KITV.

Maui Police Chief releases statement on the arrest of Maui PD officer. KHON2.


Repairs for beach groins grow closer. Final assessment released for project, repairs expected in fall. Maui News.

Hawaii Group Seeks Block Of Federal Policy On Immigrants. A Hawaii community action agency has requested governmental help in blocking a new national policy that would affect immigrants across the islands, officials said. Associated Press.


County buys 417 acres on the Westside. County buys 417 acres on the Westside. Garden Island.

County of Kauai acquires over 400 acres in Waimea from Kikiaola Land Company. The County of Kauai is announcing the purchase of 417 acres of agriculture land from the Kikiaola Land Company Ltd. on Monday. KHON2.


Mayor signs 10th emergency proclamation. Mayor Derek S. K. Kawakami has signed a 10th supplementary emergency proclamation on Monday for the County of Kauai, extending the emergency relief period for damages sustained during the April 2018 flood. Garden Island.

Council to consider ‘highway safety’ bills. Two bills pertaining to “highway safety” will be presented for potential inclusion in the 2020 Hawaii State Association of Counties Legislative Package and the 2020 County of Kauai Legislative Package. Garden Island.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Sanctuary bill advances in Hawaii Legislature, medical marijuana for tourists, $15 minimum wage mulled, Chinatown cancels Chinese New Year fest, corrections officers call in sick to watch Super Bowl, police union strikes back at new Honolulu chief, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii road ©2018 All Hawaii News
Hawaii still ranks at the bottom when it comes to road conditions given the amount of money the state pours into them. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmakers advance ‘sanctuary’ bill akin to California. A bill to prohibit Hawaii law enforcement agencies from honoring most federal immigration holds or sharing certain types of information with immigration authorities has won preliminary approval from state Senate and House committees. Star-Advertiser.

A number of bills addressing homelessness are being considered by the Hawaii Legislature. A bill to establish safe zones for homeless campers, complete with hygiene facilities and social services, does not have the support of the administration. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii May Allow Tourists To Buy Medical Marijuana. Lawmakers also may add vaporizers, more potent products and edibles to dispensaries’ product repertoire. Civil Beat.

Should "Home Inspectors" in Hawaii be licensed or regulated by the state? The idea is being talked about in the inspection industry and at the State Capital. KITV.

A Hawaii state representative has proposed a law that he says would help reduce the islands’ overwhelming number of discarded vehicles. Associated Press.

Measures intended to boost the state’s economy by increasing the minimum wage to $15 per hour over the next two years and to create a family leave plan to help family caregivers were advanced on Tuesday by the Senate Committee on Labor. Maui Now.

Ige taps former union executive to head Hawaii's labor department. Hawaii Gov. David Ige on Wednesday appointed Leonard Hoshijo to head the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. Pacific Business News.

The state is seeking to hire out-of-state contractors to help clear a backlog of health inspections of dialysis centers and other medical facilities. Star-Advertiser.

Nearly 30 percent of Hawaii’s prison guards called in sick on Super Bowl Sunday, state officials said Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

One third of corrections officers assigned to work on Super Bowl Sunday called in sick. Hawaii News Now.

OHA Demands Financial Details From Its Own Companies. Organizations created by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs will have to provide documents for an internal audit. Civil Beat.

Legislature Keeps Written Testimony Under Wraps Til The Last Minute. The common practice of not releasing testimony to the public until an hour before a hearing has one Republican lawmaker pushing for change. Civil Beat.

Hundreds send in ideas to improve missile alert system. Star-Advertiser.

Why We Didn’t Name Hawaii’s ‘Button Pusher’. Numerous media outlets agreed to publish interviews with the man who sent out the false alert without saying who he was. Civil Beat.

PUC approves HECO demand response programs, allowing the utility to control customers' equipment. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Ranks No.4 for Highest Density of Millionaires. Hawaii  previously held the number one ranking in 2010.  In 2017, Hawaiʻi ranked #4 behind #3 Connecticut, #2 New Jersey and #1 Maryland. Maui Now.


Hawaii Police Union Strikes Back At Chief Ballard Over Reassignments. SHOPO files a complaint alleging the Honolulu police chief made “false and disparaging remarks” about union leaders. Civil Beat.

SHOPO president Tenari Maafala has filed a complaint against Chief Susan Ballard with the Hawaii Labor Relations Board. KHON2.

The state Department of Health issued a high level of bacteria advisory this afternoon for Hanauma Bay, resulting in the closure of the popular snorkeling spot. Star-Advertiser.

The city has closed Hanauma Bay after high bacteria levels were detected Wednesday, and the popular preserve won't reopen until Friday at the earliest. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has rejected a World Surf League request to swap permits for two contests on the North Shore — a decision the organization says could force it to pull its championship tour competitions from Hawaii. Hawaii News Now.

Permit issues could jeopardize high-profile North Shore surf contest. KHON2.

State lawmakers are taking another crack at resolving a flap over two brothers charging for parking along Kakaako streets to which they claim ownership despite decades of public use. Star-Advertiser.

The Chinatown Merchants Association has abruptly canceled Saturday’s “Night in Chinatown Festival and Parade” to celebrate the Year of the Dog due to lack of funding. Associated Press.

Community members and event organizers are shocked and disappointed that a popular event that attracts thousands to Chinatown to celebrate Chinese New Year was canceled at the last minute due to a lack of vendors. Star-Advertiser.

How a vending machine packed with food and toiletries could help the homeless. Hawaii News Now.

After months-long repair project, new security Kakaako Waterfront is a new park. Hawaii News Now.

The newly minted Honolulu Climate Change Commission met for the first time Wednesday, electing a chairman and vowing to make addressing the impact of sea level rise on Oahu its first order of business. Star-Advertiser.

Kupuna in an affordable housing complex in Kakaako were given quite the scare last week. They received notices that their rent would soon increase – some would even double. Hawaii Public Radio.

The Shack Hawaii Kai announced it will be closing its doors after 26 years in business. KITV.

Hawaii Island

An attempt by the County Council to regulate vacation rentals is drawing a lot of interest — and concern — from part-time residents who rent out their homes and condos to help pay the bills. West Hawaii Today.

A bill that would establish a one-half percent general excise and use tax surcharge on the Big Island was heard by the Hawaii County Council Finance Committee on Feb. 6. Big Island Video News.

The county planning director has recommended that a proposal to build a roughly 5,800-square-foot 18-hole golf putting course next to Kings’ Shops in Waikoloa be approved. West Hawaii Today.

Emotions ran high at a recent meeting about the possible closure of a Big Island charter school. Hawaii News Now.


Ten drownings in three weeks on Maui have grabbed the attention of Hawaii lawmakers who want the state to step up ocean safety efforts in the isles. Civil Beat.

Anaergia Services plans to meet with Maui EKO Systems once a month about possibly continuing to process the county’s green waste at the Central Maui Landfill, while the energy company moves forward with its proposed renewable energy project at the Wailuku-Kahului Wastewater Reclamation Facility, officials from both companies said. Maui News.

Commercial waste haulers need to pay fees. Maui News.

The County Department of Environmental Management announced that as of Tuesday Feb. 20, 2018, microwave ovens cannot be accepted for recycling at E-Cycling, Maui County’s Electronic Recycling Program. Maui Now.

Home sales on Maui rose in January, led by a 25 percent increase in condominium sales, while prices were mixed, compared to the same month a year ago, according to statistics from the Realtors Association of Maui. Pacific Business News.


The public had a lot to say at Wednesday’s Kauai County Council meeting, after a resolution was introduced urging the United States to conduct diplomatic talks with North Korea with the goal of signing a peace treaty. Garden Island.

Kauai Humane Society hasn’t found a permanent leader for the facility, three months after the former executive director handed in his resignation. Garden Island.


A community meeting to hear public comments on the proposed design guidelines and standards for the Lanai City Country Town Business District will be held Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, at the Lanai Senior Center at 5 p.m. Maui Now.


Maui Electric Co. has inked an agreement to purchase power from Maui County’s first grid-scale solar and battery energy storage system on Molokai that could lower electric bills, the utility announced Tuesday. Maui News.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

$2.4B rail bailout bill signed into law, Hawaii reacts to Trump DACA termination, bird, fish deaths in wake of Lehua rat poison drop, A&B says no GMO crops on Maui, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Sept. 5, 2017 courtesy photo
Gov. David Ige signs rail bailout bill, governor's office photo
Gov. David Ige signed into law Tuesday Senate Bill 4, an estimated $2.4 billion bailout package that island leaders hope will finally complete the transit project to Ala Moana Center, following three years of steep cost increases that have left its outcome uncertain. Star-Advertiser.

Legislation to help pay for Honolulu's rail transit project became law Tuesday with Hawaii Gov. David Ige's signature. Pacific Business News.

Governor Signs Rail Funding Bill Into Law, Next: Transient Accommodations Tax. Hawaii Public Radio.

Gov. David Ige signed a bill into law Tuesday to bail out Honolulu’s rail project. KHON2.

Gov. David Ige today signed the rail funding bailout bill, SB 4, after completing legal and policy reviews of the measure over the weekend. Maui Now.

And with the stroke of the governor’s pen, Senate Bill 4 becomes law. The legislation was passed by the State House and the Senate during a divisive special session. Big Island Video News.

Gov. David Ige signed a bill Tuesday that provides additional funding for Honolulu’s financially troubled rail transit project. Maui News.

Newly appointed House Majority Leader Cindy Evans of Hawaii island could lose her leadership role in a bit of collateral damage from the Honolulu rail controversy. Star-Advertiser.

Within minutes of the Honolulu rail bailout bill being signed into law Tuesday, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell issued a statement crediting the state House and Senate for “hard work” on the legislation. Civil Beat.


There used to be a time in Hawaii when an incumbent governor was a shoo-in for re-election. But in the 2014 primary election, now-Gov. David Ige unseated a fellow Democrat. Now U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa is attempting to do the same to Ige. Associated Press.


President Donald Trump’s decision to end a program that allowed young, unauthorized immigrants known as “Dreamers” to stay in the country has sparked fear in families who could be ripped apart and drawn condemnation from Hawaii leaders. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s representatives in the U.S. Congress strongly condemned the Trump administration’s decision Tuesday to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Civil Beat.

Demonstrators lined the sidewalk outside the Federal Building in Honolulu, holding signs to voice their opposition to the decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). KITV.

Dozens gathered in front of the Prince Kuhio Federal Building Tuesday evening to rally against President Donald Trump’s plan to phase out a program offering protections to young illegal immigrants. KHON2.

At least 100 protesters took to the streets of downtown Honolulu on Tuesday afternoon, part of nationwide rallies against President Donald Trump’s plan to rescind the Obama-era program that protects young undocumented immigrants who came to the country as minors. Civil Beat.


Convincing Landlords That Housing The Homeless Is Good Business. By promising guaranteed rent and regular check-ins, shelters are creating networks of landlords willing to rent to homeless people. Civil Beat.

Retired Maj. Gen. Kelly McKeague, a 1977 Damien Memorial School graduate, was named director of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency on Tuesday, returning to the program that was mired in controversy several years ago. Star-Advertiser.

The Pentagon announced retired Maj. Gen. Kelly McKeague, a 1977 Damien Memorial School graduate, is the new director of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. Associated Press.

U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will award $7.6 million in federal funding to Hawaii to prevent and respond to natural disasters, terrorism, and other emergencies. Garden Island.

Twenty-four companies have what it takes to be named to this year’s list of Hawaii’s Best Workplaces. Pacific Business News.


Blaisdell Park free of homeless for now. Star-Advertiser.

Cuts in funding leads to a halt in Kakaako park homeless sweeps. Hawaii News Now.

New rental housing and retail is coming to the Diamond Head side of Waikiki when Queen Emma Land Co. begins the long-anticipated redevelopment of a tired 2.5-acre tract of prime leasehold land. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Communities in Kailua-Kona and Puako are battling contamination from cesspools leaking into the nearby sea. But the solution won’t be easy — nor will it be cheap. West Hawaii Today.

Kahilihili Road, which will provide a means for motorists to make left turns in to and out of the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority, opened Tuesday. West Hawaii Today.

A Kona doctor arrested on suspicion of prescription fraud last year pleaded not guilty to charges Tuesday afternoon. West Hawaii Today.

Condominium sales have lost momentum on the Big Island, dropping 22.7 percent in August after a 60 percent increase in July, according to statistics from Hawaii Island Realtors provided by Hawaii Information Service. Pacific Business News.

‘Part of who we are’: Harvey relief volunteers with Hawaii ties exude aloha spirit. Tribune-Herald.

The Big Island Fair is returning to Kailua-Kona after the threat of storm last year forced the carnival to cancel, interrupting 30 years of consecutive entertainment to the Big Island each September. West Hawaii Today.


The head of Alexander &Baldwin’s diversified agriculture operations told a Maui County Council committee Tuesday that the company is not farming any genetically modified crops for food or for animal feed. Maui News.

Several key school bus routes on Maui have been restored after a driver shortage had disrupted the start of the school for hundreds of students, Hawaii education officials said Tuesday. Civil Beat.

Dimino Named Complex Area Superintendent for Baldwin-Kekaulike-Maui. Maui Now.

A Kihei man says he found suspected ordnance along a South Maui road last week and turned it into the Maui Police Department for disposal. Maui News.

Mālama Maui Nui will host a cleanup at the Kahului Harbor small boats ramp from 9 a.m. until noon on Sept. 16, 2017. The cleanup will kickoff the annual Get the Drift and Bag It! campaign. Maui Now.


The monitoring team on Lehua Island has collected 45 dead fish and two dead birds from the near-shore waters, after two applications of rodenticide were dropped from a helicopter over the island. Garden Island.

After numerous social media posts, photos, and videos showing dead fish or birds that posters claim were killed by a rodenticide currently being used to eradicate non-native, damaging (invasive) rats from Lehua Island, the DLNR, Island Conservation, and other Lehua Island Restoration Project partners have deployed on-island monitoring teams to investigate. Maui Now.

Photos and video of dead fish and birds washing up on Lehua Island have been spreading on social media days after rat poison pellets were dropped from a helicopter on the steep cliff side of the island to eradicate invasive rodents. Star-Advertiser.

Single-family home and condominium sales experienced double-digit decreases on Kauai in August, dropping 27 percent and 11.5 percent, respectively, according to statistics from the Kauai Board of Realtors provided by Hawaii Information Service. Pacific Business News.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Ige mulls aquarium collecting ban bill, no charges yet for airport dog shooting, Hawaiian actors vie for Kamehameha movie, shipping firm considers Hawaii route, 40 apply for Kauai auditor, 30-day reprieve for immigrant coffee farmer, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Manini and other fish © 2017 All Hawaii News
A bill that would place a moratorium on all aquarium fishing in Hawaii — except for those operators already in possession of permits — is awaiting the signature of Gov. David Ige. West Hawaii Today.

According to the latest "Out of Reach" report by the National Low-Income Housing Coalition, Hawaii's average two-bedroom renter needs to earn $35.20 per hour. Hawaii News Now.

Another company said it is making a run at starting a Hawaii cargo shipping service that would break up a market duopoly and could benefit consumers. Star-Advertiser.

Workers at a Philadelphia shipyard are building vessels for a new shipping line that will soon enter the Hawaii market. Hawaii News Now.

Dozens of professional and aspiring Native Hawaiian actors answered a casting call Thursday night in hopes of playing the role of King Kamehameha in an upcoming movie called “The Islands.” Star-Advertiser.

Auditions for the upcoming movie "The Islands" were held at the Japanese Cultural Center Thursday night. Hawaii News Now.


Criminal charges will not be filed, at least “for now,” against a private security officer who fatally shot a family dog at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport on March 28, state Attorney General Doug Chin said Thursday. Star-Advertiser.

Pedestrians caught looking at mobile electronic devices, including cellphones, while crossing the street could be fined under a bill before the Honolulu City Council.  Star-Advertiser.

A state board trying to overhaul affordable-housing requirements in Kakaako will hold a new round of public hearings after suggesting additional tweaks to proposed rule changes at a meeting Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

Under pressure from developers and other opponents, a state board charged with managing development in Kakaako has rejected rule changes intended to make sure certain housing units always remain affordable. Civil Beat.

People Who Have The Most to Gain From Rail Are Still Skeptical. Even at the route’s western edge, where residents face daunting traffic congestion to get downtown, the transit project’s support is spotty. Civil Beat.

Repaving work on Date Street near Kapahulu is almost complete, but a few intersections are missing important markings like crosswalks. KITV.

Residents say removal of crosswalks makes busy street dangerous for pedestrians. KHON2.

Turning seven acres agricultural land into residential lots, to build homes. That's the plan for a property owner in Haleiwa. KITV.

State health officials confirmed seven more cases of the mumps on Oahu this week. This brings the 2017 total to 96. KITV.

What was touted for decades as 20 of the “finest lanes in Hawaii” for bowling could soon become someone’s new dining table, butcher block, workbench or something else made from the alley floors of Waialae Bowl. Star-Advertiser.


The former Uncle Billy’s Hilo Bay Hotel could again be up for grabs. The state Land Board will consider today whether to auction the land lease for the Banyan Drive property at a later date. Tribune-Herald.

A Hawaii island coffee farmer who entered the United States illegally from Mexico nearly three decades ago has been granted a 30-day reprieve on a deportation order. Associated Press.

The government gave Andres Magana Ortiz 30 more days in the U.S, but there is a possibility the father of three could still be sent back to Mexico. KITV.

Starting today, about 100 companies from around the globe will be represented on the Big Island as part of a four-day event aimed at selling Hawaii as a prime spot for meetings, conventions and incentive trips. Tribune-Herald.

It’s likely the sentencing of Peter Kema Sr. for the 1997 death of his 6-year-old son, Peter Kema Jr., won’t happen today as scheduled because authorities continue to look for the boy’s remains and because Kema hasn’t yet been given a polygraph test to determine if he told the truth about where he left the boy’s body. Tribune-Herald.

A magnitude-5.3 earthquake centered near the 61g lava flow on Hawaii Island startled a tour group Thursday morning, as they hiked out to see the volcanic activity. Big Island Video News.


The Pukalani Country Club has put up 455 solar panels that can generate 220-megawatt hours of power for the Maui Electric Co. grid, the golf course general manager said. Maui News.

Wailuku Water Co. hopes the state Public Utilities Commission approves its proposed sale of about 4,500 acres in the next two to three months to survive mounting losses that threaten to close the company, its president said Tuesday. Maui News.


Despite advertising in multiple publications and online and interviewing applicants, the county auditor position has remained empty for nearly two years. Garden Island.

The Planning Department is recommending the Planning Commission approve the General Plan Update when it meets Tuesday. Garden Island.

An energy project on the Hawaii island Kauai could set the island on a track to surpass the new goal of 70 percent energy generation from renewable resources by 2030. Associated Press.

Tropic Care Kauai 2017 gets underway Monday. Garden Island.


E. coli bacteria has been detected in an East Molokai water source, the Ualapue Shaft, according to the county Department of Water Supply. Maui News.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Rail bonds approved, Honolulu council hikes bus, parking, weight fees, Big Island gas tax hike advances, interim schools superintendent named, Maui mulls sand mining moratorium, Kauai studies landfill, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation
Rail construction, courtesy Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation
Construction of Honolulu’s beleaguered rail project likely will proceed past January, now that it’s squeaked out a sixth, pivotal City Council vote required to float bonds and help keep the work on track. The Council’s 6-3 decision on Wednesday, which hinged on Councilman Trevor Ozawa’s swing vote, authorizes up to $350 million in city general obligation bonds for rail. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu City Council approved a measure Wednesday to ensure construction of the rail project can continue through June 2018 by issuing up to $350 million in bonds, although there is still no long-term revenue source to finish the $10 billion, 20-mile line. Civil Beat.

The city's controversial rail project survived a crucial vote Wednesday at Honolulu Hale -- one that could have shut down all construction and operations within a couple months. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu's financially troubled rail transit project will be able to issue bonds to keep it afloat through the end of the year. KITV.

The city council voted on a number of measures Wednesday night that could bring in much needed funding to the Honolulu rail project. KHON2.

Hawaii’s newly appointed schools superintendent says she has her sights set on raising student achievement in the islands above the rest of the country’s public schools. Star-Advertiser.

The future superintendent of Hawaii schools — and the high school principal who will serve as interim schools chief for a month until she starts her job Aug. 1 — spoke briefly to the media Wednesday. Civil Beat.

Keith Hayashi, Waipahu High School’s principal who has been serving as interim deputy superintendent since March, has been tapped to lead the public school system as interim superintendent until Aug. 1, the Department of Education announced Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

A new report from Pew Research Center shows that Hawaii had the most multiracial and multiethnic births in the nation at 44 percent in 2015. Civil Beat.

Only four restaurants from the entire state of Hawaii were recognized on OpenTable's 100 Best Al Fresco Dining Restaurants in America, a list of the best outdoor dining restaurants in the country. Pacific Business News.


Motor vehicle weight taxes, bus fares and parking rates will go up under a 2018 budget package approved by the Honolulu City Council on Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu residents will have to pay more to drive and park as the result of City Council action Wednesday to balance the 2018 fiscal year budget. Civil Beat.

In Wednesday's Honolulu City Council meeting, the council approved a bill for a one-time increase on city bus fares. KITV.

The City Council voted Wednesday to override Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s veto on a bill that would block the transfer of Thomas Square to the Department of Enterprise Services from the Department of Parks and Recreation, citing concerns that the move could commercialize much-needed green space. Star-Advertiser.

The City Council advanced a measure Wednesday that would allow a Waikiki nonprofit group to set transportation policies, handle curb and parking enforcement, and build parking garages and other transportation-related structures in the state’s No. 1 tourist destination. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu City Council chose not to pass a bill Wednesday to close a loophole in the city’s plastic bag ban. Civil Beat.

The Honolulu City Council has decided it needs more time to decide whether to strengthen Oahu’s plastic bag ban. KHON2.

A controversial measure to ban all plastic shopping bags has been shelved by the Honolulu City Council. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu City Council has again deferred action on a bill that would require retailers to charge a fee for checkout bags and ban so-called compostable plastic bags. Star-Advertiser.

Libraries are popping up across the country, but they’re not lending books. They’re lending tools. The HNL Tool Library is part of a nationwide movement prioritizing access to tools over ownership. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

A gas tax hike is probably coming to a pump near you, but there will be less of an immediate sticker shock following the County Council’s 8-1 vote Wednesday to spread Mayor Harry Kim’s requested increase more evenly throughout the next three years. West Hawaii Today.

The Hilo landfill isn’t closed yet, but Hawaii County already was approached about using it for a solar farm once it’s capped, officials told the County Council on Wednesday. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii County Council members on Wednesday rejected for a second and final time a controversial resolution claiming historical discrimination against low-income and Native Hawaiian residents of Puna and Ka‘u. Tribune-Herald.

Millions of dollars will be spent upgrading Hilo International Airport throughout the next two years. Tribune-Herald.

As Hawaii’s congressional delegation rallies around Kona coffee farmer and undocumented immigrant Andres Magana Ortiz as he faces deportation to Mexico, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard took the effort a step further on Wednesday, taking the cause to the floor of the House and urging Congress to pass a ‘private bill’ she introduced this week to help Magana Ortiz. Big Island Video News.

The Waimea family and community man facing deportation was given 45 days to take care of his affairs before he has to leave Hawaii Island. West Hawaii Today.


The Maui County Council is taking steps on a sand mining moratorium. KHON2.

Department of Liquor Control Director Glenn Mukai said Wednesday that the department isn’t changing any of its rules for nonprofit liquor licenses — it’s just complying with state laws that have been in place since 2008. Maui News.

Members of the Maui Police Department Traffic Section along with assistance from patrol officers conducted a two week operation from May 22 to June 4, 2017 targeting seatbelt, child restraint and pick-up truck restriction violations. Maui Now.

For weeks, Minerva Martinez dreaded Wednesday, a day of reckoning for the 47-year-old Mexican immigrant who was ordered to report for possible deportation. Civil Beat.


Consulting group presents findings on makeup of Kekaha Landfill. Garden Island.

Sen. Brian Schatz has a list of items he wants to help fund on the Garden Isle. Garden Island.

Two important ocean safety communication pieces are available to businesses on Kauai. Garden Island.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Milestone for Honolulu rail, Big Island coffee farmer faces deportation, China invited to 2018 RIMPAC, airport rename official, Portlock surfers seek access, Maui council passes $705M budget, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Mayor's Office
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell at rail trial run, courtesy photo
Honolulu rail officials tested a rail car on the partly-built elevated guideway for the first time today. They took it for a 3-mile ride, towing it between the Waipahu Transit Center and the West Loch Station. Associated Press.

The rail project got on track — literally — Tuesday afternoon when the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation ran a train along a portion of its guideway. Civil Beat.

The public got its first glimpse of a train car moving along Oahu’s partly built elevated guideway Tuesday, as testing began on the vehicle in Leeward Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

It was a moment nearly a decade in the making. On Tuesday, the first rail cars slowly made their way across the elevated guide way in Waipahu. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu’s rail project took a step forward Tuesday when cars moved along the elevated guideway for the very first time. KHON2.

The unexpected sight of the train on the tracks startled people going about their business in Waipahu town. KITV.


The Hawaii Council on Revenues left its quarterly fiscal forecast for the state general fund unchanged Tuesday, opting to not speculate on whether the Legislature will raise taxes to maintain funding for Honolulu’s over-budget rail project. Civil Beat.

China has been invited to return to Rim of the Pacific exercises off Hawaii in the summer of 2018 despite a new round of challenges between the United States and the rising Asian nation in the East China and South China seas. Star-Advertiser.

The University of Hawaii’s nearly 4,000 faculty members would receive annual pay increases of at least 2 percent over the next four years under a tentative deal reached with the state. Star-Advertiser.

The days of pizza and ice cream parties in Hawaii’s public schools are coming to an end. Garden Island.

Health insurers received a reprieve from an Obamacare fee this year, which in part helped to bolster the earnings of Kaiser Permanente Hawaii, the state’s largest health maintenance organization. Star-Advertiser.


Hawaii’s largest airport was formally renamed the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport this morning in a poignant ceremony in the Honolulu facility’s atrium building, which sits under the new signage. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu International Airport is now officially known as the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu International Airport renamed to honor late U.S. senator. KITV.

The notion of reselling workforce housing units — and whether the profits should be shared with the state — is at the crux of an ongoing debate over a state proposal to change the affordable housing rules in Kakaako. Civil Beat.

Residents and surfers expressed outrage Tuesday night about a new gate on a private lane blocking public access to a Portlock beach. Star-Advertiser.

A gate blocking public access to the ocean in East Oahu continues to be a hot topic issue for area residents and lawmakers. Hawaii News Now.

Residents demand action in battle over East Oahu beach access. KHON2.

An Oahu school has been without a fire alarm system for years. KHON2.

​Honolulu falls behind Mainland cities as sought after summer destination. Pacific Business News.

Three state representatives hosted a town hall meeting on medical marijuana Tuesday evening at Kapolei High School. KITV.

The sentencing of a college student charged with animal cruelty in connection with the killings of Laysan albatrosses at Kaena Point has been postponed until July. Star-Advertiser.

University of Hawaii mechanical engineering professor admitted Tuesday in U.S. District Court that he allowed someone else to download child pornography video from his computer using a file-sharing program. Star-Advertiser.

A longtime restaurant in Honolulu featuring authentic Hawaiian cuisine is preparing to close its doors after serving customers for more than 50 years. Associated Press.

Hawaii Island

The plight of a Hawaii island coffee farmer facing deportation came under the national spotlight Tuesday as a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge took a broad swipe at the Trump administration and its immigration policies. Star-Advertiser.

A Trump administration order to deport a man who entered the country illegally and became a respected businessman in Hawaii was “inhumane” and “contrary to the values of the country and its legal system,” a judge on the nation’s largest federal appeals court wrote today in an unusually impassioned opinion. Associated Press.

How folks feel about a proposed fuel tax hike may depend on how close they sit to the road. West Hawaii Today.

Parties in the ongoing Thirty-Meter Telescope contested case have submitted their final arguments for consideration by hearings officer Riki May Amano. Tribune-Herald.

An undeveloped oceanfront parcel on Hawaii’s Big Island that includes 16,455 acres of land and some six miles of coastline, including Pohue Bay, is on the market for an asking price of $18 million. Pacific Business News.

A big piece of the Big Island has been put back up for sale after its owner never went through with a remote coastal resort development plan. Star-Advertiser.

Papakolea Beach at South Point was named among the world’s 28 “most extraordinary beaches.” Beaches were selected by the travel site Expedia for their “quirky features, breathtakingly divine vistas and memorable characteristics.” Tribune-Herald.


The Maui County Council gave its final approval Tuesday to the county’s $705.2 million fiscal 2018 budget, which will include slightly higher motor vehicle weight taxes to pay for more roadway improvement projects, which the community asked for, council members said. Maui News.

Maui corrections officer: Understaffing, overcrowding putting lives at risk. Hawaii News Now.

Public comments are due June 7 on an environmental impact statement preparation notice for a project to revamp Kaanapali Resort properties owned by the State of Hawaii Employees Retirement System. Maui News.

Fair coordinators are hoping Gov. David Ige will identify Neighbor Island fairs as a “purpose for public good” and waive wharfage fees to ship carnival rides and games to keep the popular events running in the face of rising shipping rates. Maui News.

Maui Economic Opportunity Inc. will receive a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant of $1,047,514 to help fund 13 Head Start centers on Maui and Molokai, according to an announcement from U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz. Maui News.

The High Technology Development Corp. has partnered with entrepreneurs Nick and Brittany Heyd to share their business knowledge with tech innovators in the state. Pacific Business News.

Two New Care Providers Join Kaiser on Maui. Maui Now.

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard gave the keynote address at Kihei Charter High School’s 16th commencement ceremony at the Maui Nui Golf Club in the Maui Research & Technology Park on Friday. Maui News.


The Hawaii Tourism Authority’s recently released visitor statistics show an 18.9 percent increase in visitor expenditures on Kauai for the first four months of 2017 over the time in 2016 — from $536.4 million in 2016 to $637.6 million in 2017. Garden Island.

Conservationists at National Tropical Botanical Garden have discovered new populations of a number of species listed as critically endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List, including laukahi (Plantago princeps var. anomola). Garden Island.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Legislature's budget agreement to raise hotel taxes for Honolulu rail, give less to counties; more union raises; immigrant protections; Ige gears up for re-elecion bid; trouble-shooter hired for Hele-On buses; new police cars for Kauai, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii House majority
Hawaii Legislature 2017, courtesy Hawaii House majority
Rail and the political turmoil that surrounds it helped steer the state Legislature into dramatic new positions last week on some longstanding, contentious issues, with results that startled even some of the politicians involved. Star-Advertiser.

Senate conferees agreed to the House conference draft of Senate Bill 1183 to scrap a proposed two-year extension to Oahu’s general excise tax surcharge and instead boost Hawaii’s transient accommodations tax to 12 percent, from the current 9.25 percent, starting Jan. 1. Pacific Business News.

Lawmakers Strike Deal to Fund Honolulu Rail Project With Higher Hotel Taxes. Negotiators agreed on a plan Friday to increase the hotel tax, but the deal must still be approved by the full House and Senate. Civil Beat.

New Public Union Deals Will Be Costly For State. A handful of union contracts have yet to be finalized, but the state’s top budget official says the estimated cost so far tops $460 million. Civil Beat.

Hawaii lawmakers decided not to pass a bill Friday that would have mandated the state Department of Health post inspection reports for day care centers. Civil Beat.

State lawmakers passed a resolution to help protect immigrants in Hawaii. House Resolution 76 asks local law enforcement to not execute an immigration arrest unless they have a warrant from the federal government. KITV.

All-Mail Balloting Bill Dies In Final Hour Of Conference. The measure’s author says it’s only a matter of time before it becomes law. Civil Beat.

A bill that would have appropriated tax money for a study regarding the effects of sunscreen on coral reefs was rejected at a hearing Friday, as lawmakers refused to release the state funds required by the measure. Star-Advertiser.

Invasive species bills see mixed results. Tribune-Herald.

Rat lungworm, a disease long endemic to Puna, has gained national attention after Maui residents and two tourists from the mainland have become ill. Tribune-Herald.

The Hawaii Senate rejected Gov. David Ige’s nomination of Tom Gorak to the three-member Public Utilities Commission on Friday night on a 15-10 vote. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii state Senate has rejected Gov. David Ige’s nomination of Hawaii Public Utilities Commission commissioner Thomas Gorak — who was appointed as an interim commissioner last year two weeks before the agency voted to reject NextEra Energy’s $4.3 billion acquisition of Hawaiian Electric Co. — to serve a full term until 2022. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii’s 13 largest publicly traded companies rewarded their CEOs last year by increasing their total compensation an average 13.8 percent to $2.2 million, according to a Hono­lulu Star-Advertiser analysis of Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Six officers, including the non-CEO, received a pay package of at least $3 million. Star-Advertiser.

Visitor spending in Hawaii jumped 12.3 percent to $1.4 billion in March, partially due to a surge in spending by visitors from the Japan market, according to preliminary statistics released Friday by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Pacific Business News.

A comeback from the Japan visitor market helped boost statewide March tourism numbers, including the industry’s highest monthly spending increase since December 2012. Star-Advertiser.

Were These ‘Local’ Products Really Made In Hawaii? Firms connected to the mainland like to evoke Hawaii in their marketing. Many have island origins, but have found it’s hard to expand here. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s American Savings Bank reported first quarter net income of $15.8 million, a 24.7 percent increase from net income of $12.7 million during the first quarter of 2016. Pacific Business News.

Trump May Try, But Only Congress Can Undo National Monuments. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Ishii ramps up policy effort for Ige’s re-election drive. Star-Advertiser.


Voting began Friday for Oahu’s 33 neighborhood boards in what the Honolulu Neighborhood Commission Office hopes will be a largely paperless process. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu International, the state’s busiest airport has been renamed after the late U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye. KHON2.

Hawaiian Electric Co. is seeking 3.1 million gallons of sustainably produced, renewable biofuel per year for three years to power biofuel-capable power plants on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

Hundreds marched in Waikiki on Saturday morning in a demonstration to fight climate change, joining similar marches across the country. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

The wheels come off: Chaos at Mass Transit baseyard reflects turmoil in agency. West Hawaii Today.

A May 30 deadline has been set for submitting final arguments in the Thirty Meter Telescope contested case hearing, but project foes contend it’s not enough time considering the volume of documents, exhibits and transcripts generated by the proceeding. Star-Advertiser.

Several bills introduced by Hawaii Island legislators died in the final hours of conferencing Friday. Tribune-Herald.

Appropriations aim to alleviate homelessness, invasive species in West Hawaii. West Hawaii Today.

Researchers hopeful biocontrol measure will help protect Kona coffee. West Hawaii Today.

One of the biggest players in Hawaii’s Kona coffee industry is in shambles after a legal battle that has left many small farmers unpaid along with questions about what happened to a business whose coffee retailed for up to $69 a pound. Star-Advertiser.

Visitors traveling to the Big Island spent $203.3 million last month, a 25.3 percent jump from last year, caused by double-digit growth in visitor arrivals from U.S. West, U.S. East, Japan and Canada, according to preliminary statistics from the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Pacific Business News.


Maui Land &Pineapple Co. is only $1.2 million away from being debt free after selling a three-hole practice golf course in February for $7 million. Star-Advertiser.

After an anxious month and steep learning curve about how to co-exist with invasive slugs carrying rat lungworm disease, Hana celebrated itself at the 25th East Maui Taro Festival. Civil Beat.

DOH to hold community meetings on Maui to discuss rat lungworm disease. Hawaii News Now.


The Kauai Police Department will be getting new patrol cars. The Kauai County Council unanimously approved a budget request from Chief Darryl Perry last week to spend $178,000 a year for five years to lease new Ford Explorers. Garden Island.

Grant limits could be placed on a $200,000 county allocation distributed to Kekaha residents. Garden Island.

Kaui projects included in state operating budget for fiscal years 2018 and 2019. Garden Island.


For the third time in three decades, the state Land Use Commission has come to a different conclusion on whether Larry Ellison, owner of Lanai is using a proper source of water to irrigate its luxury ocean-view golf course. Star-Advertiser.