Showing posts with label judiciary. Show all posts
Showing posts with label judiciary. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Hawaii recovery slow, drastic changes in Honolulu redistricting, lava buyout program expands, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

 

copyright 2021 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaiian Airlines at HNL ©2021 All Hawaii News

Despite Momentum, Hawaiian Airlines Forecast Signals Slow Recovery. In a sign of the challenge Hawaii tourism companies face recovering from the Covid-19 travel drought, Hawaiian Airlines said Tuesday it expects revenue to be down 32% to 37% during the last three months of 2021 compared to the same period in 2019. Civil Beat. Maui Now.

Nominations of female judges to Hawaii Circuit Court applauded. Leaders of the state Senate’s Women’s Caucus today applauded Gov. David Ige’s nominations of four women to Hawaii’s Circuit Courts. A fifth woman also has been nominated by Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. Star-Advertiser.

Thirty Meter Telescope protesters oppose Biden’s U.S. attorney pick for Hawaii. Some Native Hawaiians are objecting to President Joe Biden’s choice for U.S. attorney for Hawaii, saying Clare Connors treated dozens of elders like criminals when her office prosecuted them for blocking a road while protesting the construction of a telescope in Hawaii. Associated Press.

Chemical Shortages Are Hitting Hawaii From Pools To Breweries. Supply chain snafus caused by the pandemic have pinched chemical supplies, leaving the city and businesses scrambling for alternatives or ways to get by with less. Civil Beat.

Central Pacific Bank triples earnings. Central Pacific Bank more than tripled its net income in the third quarter, increased its dividend and repurchased more of its shares as it continued to distance itself from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii sees 74 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 83,522. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 36 new cases on Oahu, 19 on Hawaii Island, two on Maui, 12 on Kauai and five Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

New City Council district map drastically moves neighborhoods. The Honolulu Reapportionment Committee on Tuesday night selected a map that would would drastically change the voter makeup of Council districts beginning in 2022. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

Human error, not aging Red Hill tanks, caused May fuel spill, Navy says. The U.S. Navy has concluded that a May 6 spill at its Red Hill underground fuel farm was due to a control room operator’s failure to follow correct procedures. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.

The Sierra Club wants transparency, emails, answers about recent Navy fuel leaks and Red Hill.
The Sierra Club of Hawaiʻi has filed a public records complaint with the state Department of Health after learning of an email trail it believes could change the outcome of a contested case hearing for the U.S. Navy’s permit to operate the Red Hill Underground Fuel Storage Facility. Hawaii Public Radio.

City Council wants to hike traffic fines to raise money for Honolulu Police Department. Currently, money collected from the fines goes to the state, all of it. Council members are looking to raise the fines in order for the city to get some of that. KHON2.
 
Initial phase of a three-tower senior housing project in Liliha-Palama will break ground in 2022. A state agency has committed to finance the first of three affordable senior housing towers planned on the Hawaii Public Housing Authority’s outdated Liliha­-Palama administrative campus. Star-Advertiser.

5 Honolulu Police Department officers unjustly shot and killed car theft suspect, complaint alleges. The family of a 30-year-old man who was shot and killed by plainclothes police officers at a gas station in Kapolei in 2019 is suing the Honolulu Police Department for negligence and wrongful death. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii Island


Water power charges to increase. An increase in electric rates is leading to the highest power cost surcharge on county water bills in at least two years, with the Water Board on Tuesday approving a 16% hike in the power cost charge. West Hawaii Today.

Phase 2 of lava buyout program set to begin. Owners of secondary residences that were isolated, damaged or destroyed during the 2018 Kilauea eruption will be able to apply next week for the county to buy their properties. Tribune-Herald. KITV4.

Maui

Marine Institute has Documented 201 Sick, Injured or Dead Sea Turtles So Far This Year. The Maui Ocean Center’s Marine Institute has documented 201 sick, injured or dead sea turtles on Maui so far this year. According to the organization, 89% of the incidents involved turtles with injuries from fishing gear interactions. Maui Now.

Upcountry water shortage ends, but drought remains. A nearly four-month-long water shortage declaration for Upcountry came to an end due to recent rainfall, though many areas across Maui County are still experiencing severe drought and concerns over enforcement of water restrictions remain. Maui Now.

GoFundMe Account Set Up for Repairs of StoneWave Skate Park in Pā‘ia. A GoFundMe account has been set up to raise about $8,000 for fence restoration and repairs of the StoneWave Skate Park, a part of the Pāʻia Youth & Cultural Center. Maui Now.

Kauai


Controversial Seacliff development deferred again. A wave of resident testimony on the potential cultural and ecological impacts of a development within the gated Seacliff Plantation subdivision has caused the Planning Commission to defer any decision on the application until December. Garden Island.

Temporary Waimea skatepark expected to be up by next summer. The Kaua‘i Planning Department is planning to set up a temporary ramp and halfpipe at the Waimea Athletic Field. Garden Island.


Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Libraries, courts limit services as pandemic hits home, ICU beds fill statewide, Honolulu city employees get vaccination reprieve, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2021 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hawaii State Public Library ©2021 All Hawaii News

Hawai‘i’s Public Libraries to Close Wednesdays Beginning August 18. Due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, all Hawai‘i State Public Library branches will be closed to the public on Wednesdays beginning August 18. Garden Island. KHON2.

Hawaii courts to postpone jury trials until October. Responding to the ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases, Chief Justice Mark E. Recktenwald today ordered jury trials postponed across Hawaii through Oct. 4. Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.

Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff to travel to Hawaii. Second gentleman Douglas Emhoff will travel to Hawaii on his return trip from Tokyo after he represents the United States at the Paralympic Games. Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, will visit Honolulu on Aug. 25.  Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii State Parks Expect To Triple Their Revenue. Despite a year of fluctuating restrictions in parks across the islands, a change in fees gives the parks division an unanticipated increase in cash. Civil Beat.

Native Hawaiian homestead leader, Robin Danner, to reopen Washington, D.C., office full time. Robin Danner, chairwoman of the Sovereign Council of Hawaiian Homestead Associations, will move from Kauai to the nation’s capital next month to reopen the advocacy group’s office. This marks the first time in the organization’s 34-year history that it will have full-time representation on the Hill. Star-Advertiser.

Blue Planet Foundation’s executive director Jeff Mikulina to depart after 13 years. The Blue Planet Foundation today announced that Jeff Mikulina will step down from his role as executive director on Oct. 15, 13 years after taking the helm of the locally based nonprofit that advocates for 100% clean energy in Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Businesses Are Considering Vaccine Requirements For Customers. As the the Covid-19 delta variant drives new cases, business groups are discussing whether to support policies requiring customers to be vaccinated. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Electric to require employees to show vaccination or submit to weekly testing. Hawaiian Electric said today it will require employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit to weekly testing starting Sept. 1. Star-Advertiser.

More visitors to Hawaii arrested for having fake COVID vaccination cards. Two more people have been arrested and charged for falsifying vaccination cards in order to travel to Hawaii. KHON2.

No ICU beds available at Queen’s medical facilities as COVID cases surge in Hawaii. The Queen’s Health Systems has no available intensive care beds, has started canceling elective surgeries and procedures and has had to divert patients with emergency health needs to other hospitals as Hawaii’s surge in COVID-19 cases strains resources and threatens to grow worse. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

Hawaii sees 539 new coronavirus cases, bringing statewide total to 51,739. The new confirmed and probable infection count by island includes 376 new cases on Oahu, 49 on Maui, 80 on Hawaii island, 14 on Kauai, three on Molokai, and 17 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Deadline extended for Honolulu employees to comply with vaccine mandate. Facing the prospect of a sudden shortage of police, firefighters, paramedics and other county workers who have not been inoculated against COVID-19, Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi extended by one week the deadline for employees to comply with Honolulu’s vaccine mandate to Monday. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu DPP Revising Vacation Rental Regulations, Operators Face Uncertain Future. Two years afterpassing regulations, city’s department of planning and permitting is reevaluating the law, and how to regulate short-term vacation rentals going forward. Hawaii Public Radio.

Tough competition, soaring prices: No relief in sight for tough housing market.
According to the Honolulu Board of Realtors, more than 80% of the homes in Leeward and Central Oahu were sold above the asking price in July. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Fire Commission To Hear From Chief Finalists.
The two candidates will discuss their application for the job in a public session Aug. 25. Civil Beat.

Nearly 3,000 students expected to move in to UHM dorms this week. Classes at the University of Hawaii start on August 23.Students will need to show proof they've received the full COVID-19 vaccination -- or undergo weekly testing for the virus. KITV4.

Hawaii Island

Schools try to ‘stay the course’: COVID-19 cases creep up at DOE campuses statewide. More than 50 COVID-19 cases were reported in Big Island schools and administrative offices Aug. 7-13, the first full week that most students returned to campuses. Tribune-Herald.

Ethics Board finds Van Pernis wasn’t courteous. The Board of Ethics last week ruled Leeward Planning Commissioner Mark Van Pernis violated the county ethics code requiring officials treat everyone respectfully, even as he faces one final County Council vote Wednesday to oust him as a commissioner. West Hawaii Today.

Hawaiʻi Reps Welcome Chair Of House Indigenous Peoples Subcommittee. The Chair of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States was on Hawaiʻi island on Friday, visiting homestead communities in Panaʻewa and Keaukaha. Big Island Video News.

Hundreds of goats removed from National Park. More than 400 goats were removed from Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park last week. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Residents call wind-blown litter around Central Maui Landfill ‘upsetting’. Maui county officials are struggling to control wind-whipped trash near a landfill. The county is promising improvements to the Central Maui landfill on Pulehu Road in Puunene. Hawaii News Now.

39 COVID-19 Patients at Maui Hospital, Most COVID Admissions Since Pandemic Started. According to the hospital, initiatives are in place to support employees, including extra clinical help MMMC is to receive next week with the arrival of several rapid response nurses and respiratory therapists. Maui Now.

Maui Memorial ‘extremely busy’ but patients may still seek care. Maui Health in collaboration with the Healthcare Association of Hawaii “will be welcoming several rapid response nurses and respiratory therapists” to assist with the COVID patients. Maui News.

MEO’s Imada named to HPR advisory board. Maui Economic Opportunity Executive Assistant Lee Imada has been named to the new class of Hawaii Public Radio’s Community Advisory Board. Maui News.

Kauai

County investigates education and KCCC clusters. The county is continuing to investigate two clusters on island, one at an educational setting which has resulted in 37 primary or secondary cases and one at the Kaua‘i Community Correctional Center which the Department of Public Safety reported 15 new positive cases among inmates and one from a staff member. Garden Island.

Rent and utility assistance goes on the road. Expenses eligible for the rental and utility relief include rental arrears, future rent, and utilities in arrears for March 2020 through December 2021. Garden Island.

Monday, July 26, 2021

First Lady Jill Biden promotes vaccinations in Hawaii as COVID cases surge, Safe Travels restrictions to remain through 2021, Honolulu rail whistle blower denied legal victory, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii News Now
First Lady Jill Biden with Hawaii officials PC: Hawaii News Now video

First lady Jill Biden urges all to get shots, shows support for military families in short Hawaii visit. First lady Jill Biden implored Hawaii residents to get vaccinated for COVID during a whirlwind stopover on Oahu, which was part of the administration’s efforts to improve vaccination rates among Americans as well as honor the work and serv­ice of military families. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Hawaii’s Safe Travels program will likely stay in place through 2021. Gov. David Ige has taken flak for insisting that Safe Travels, the nation’s strictest traveler entry program, which is costing the state about $3 million a month, needs to run until at least 70% of Hawaii’s entire population is vaccinated against COVID-19. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Governor urges residents to help stop COVID-19 spread to avoid return of restrictions. Governor David Ige advises people to put off attending large social gatherings and in-person church services until case counts are under control. KITV4.

Hawaii Governor wants students to wear masks in school, regardless of vaccination status. Governor David Ige said the Department of Health and Department of Education are finalizing COVID-19 guidance for this coming school year. KITV4.

House Panel Subpoenas Land Fund, Agriculture Agency. Both agencies were the targets of recent critical examinations by State Auditor Les Kondo. Civil Beat.

Does Hawaiʻi Need More Diversity, Experience in the Court System? Gov. David Ige’s recent judicial appointment to the Hawaiʻi Intermediate Court of Appeals is prompting questions about the role of experience and diversity in decision making. Ige chose Daniel Gluck, former head of the Hawaiʻi State Ethics Commission, from a pool of six candidates to fill a vacancy on the Intermediate Court of Appeals. Hawaii Public Radio.

Vaccination sites mostly empty as COVID infections surge in Hawaii. Statewide, clinicians only administered an average of 2,153 shots a day this week. That’s down from last week, when the average was 2,419 shots a day. Hawaii News Now.

July 25, 2021 COVID-19 Update: 276 Cases, 2 Deaths. The confirmed cases included: 163 on O‘ahu (+3 probable); 65 on Hawai‘i Island; 19 on Maui (+3 probable); six on Kaua‘i; and 17 in Hawai‘i residents diagnosed while out of state. Maui Now.

Oahu

Paid To Stand By: How A Botched Rail Contract Multiplied Costs. Rail contractors were paid to ramp up and be ready to perform utility relocation work that didn’t materialize. Civil Beat.

Nan Inc. Prevails In Rail-Related Whistleblower Lawsuit. The firm’s former in-house counsel had alleged illegal activity related to rail work in 2019. A major rail contractor has prevailed in a whistleblower lawsuit brought by its former in-house counsel, who had alleged he was fired after warning the company not to conduct “illegal activity” related to the multibillion-dollar transit project. Civil Beat.

The Choice For Workers At A Honolulu Care Facility — Get Vaccinated Or Get Fired.
The health care industry is grappling with how to handle employees who refuse to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as cases rise. Civil Beat.

Army Seeks Public Input for Continued Use of 6,000 acres of State Lands on Oʻahu. The Army is preparing an environmental impact statement for continued use of Kahuku Training Area, Poamoho Training Area and Makua Military Reservation. The Army, Marine Corps and Hawaii Army National Guard all use it for exercises. Hawaii Public Radio.

Major Honolulu private schools commit to in-person learning. As COVID case numbers surged and the state Education and Health departments said they were updating pandemic guidelines for schools, seven Honolulu private K-12 schools queried last week by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser said they were sticking to their plans for the new academic year.  Star-Advertiser.

Local theaters tackle Tier 5 restrictions in different ways. When Oahu moved to the less restrictive Tier 5 in its reopening strategy on July 8, the process of doing business was made easier for some local businesses. Star-Advertiser.

Recent changes to Leahi Avenue pose a hazard for children, neighbors say. When classes begin Aug. 3, students and teachers returning to Waikiki Elementary School on Leahi Avenue will face changes made over the summer that many residents complain have made traffic conditions more dangerous, especially for the children who walk to school along the narrow, privately owned street, which lacks a continuous sidewalk on either side. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Study: Hawaii County has third worst primary care provider shortage in US. NursingEducation.org, a website that provides information and resources for nursing students, analyzed 2021 data from the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Health Professional Shortage Area tool to rank counties with the largest shortages of health care workers. Tribune-Herald.

Project to assess health care in Hawaii County. Lisa Rantz, president of the Hawaii State Rural Health Association and executive director of the Hilo Medical Center Foundation, said the goal is to evaluate what is working in Hawaii’s health care, what issues still need to be addressed, and to come up with an action plan to meet community needs. Tribune-Herald.

Charter school receives $48,000 grant for farm-to-school program. With the grant, Connections, whose main campus is in downtown Hilo, will develop learning and food production experiences for kindergarten through 12th-grade students on leased property located off Edita Street in Hilo’s Kaumana community. Tribune-Herald.

Honomū Fishing Access Via Seacliff Ladder Will Be Preserved, EA Says. An applicant proposing to build on the Hāmākua Coast says the cultural practice of descending the tall seacliff via ladders and ropes to fish will be preserved through access easements. Big Island Video News.

Maui

Ige Appoints Linda Clark To Fill Maui House Seat. Clark is a state process server and head of a Maui nonprofit. Clark is the president of the Kaupo Community Association and has served on the Hana Advisory Committee. She is the fourth generation of a ranching family and also has experience with various local nonprofits. Civil Beat.

Council closer to lowering short-term rental caps. Bill passes on first reading along with measures on foam products, ziplines. In a step to reduce short-term rentals on Maui and open up more housing for residents, the Maui County Council passed a bill on first reading Friday to cut the number of short-term rental home permits on the Valley Isle. Maui News.

County could consider higher rates for top water users.
Officials want to incentivize conservation at hotels, other facilities. About 16 of the top 20 potable water consumers during fiscal year 2020 were hotels, timeshares and condominiums used for short-term visitor accommodations — all in South and West Maui. Maui News.

Kauai

KPD reduces officer vacancy to 8. The Kaua‘i Police Department employs up to 162 sworn officers, and now it’s closer to that number than it has ever been in recent history. Garden Island.

KIUC works to keep birds off power lines. The Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative is resuming the installation of bird diverters on power lines to reduce collisions with endangered nocturnal seabirds. Garden Island.

Waimea 400 plan virtual meeting is July 28. The third community meeting for the Waimea 400 Master Plan is online Wednesday, July 28, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Garden Island.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Legislature mulls free tuition, taxing REITs, Ige appoints campaign manager as judge, Honolulu rail tax falters, Machado returns as OHA chair, Ward Warehouse coming down, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
University of Hawaii at Manoa © 2017 All Hawaii News
Two bills that would appropriate millions for low-income students to attend University of Hawaii schools cleared their first hurdle at a House Higher Education Committee hearing Thursday. Civil Beat.

Mainland Students Could Be An ‘Economic Driver’ For Hawaii. Some lawmakers want the University of Hawaii to attract more out-of-state students who pay higher tuition as well as diversify the campuses. Civil Beat.

Hawai’i’s top economic drivers, tourism and the military, are at or near capacity. But the state has a plan to expand the economy in innovation, the fastest growing sector.  Hawaii Public Radio.

End tax breaks for REITs, real estate investment trusts, local firms urge Legislature. Star-Advertiser.
Former state workers face long wait for payouts despite hefty payroll upgrade. KHON2.

Promising to bring stability to a panel beset with dissension, Colette Machado of Molokai on Thursday was elected chairwoman of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Board of Trustees. Star-Advertiser.

Colette Machado has returned to the seat of power at a state agency supporting Native Hawaiians. In related news, Abigail Kawananakoa filed a lawsuit Thursday challenging the employment of OHA CEO Kamanao’pono Crabbe. Civil Beat.

Hawaii's attorney general wants to add a new plaintiff to the state's lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump's travel ban on people from seven mostly Muslim countries: Ismail Elshikh, the imam of the Muslim Association of Hawaii, whose mother-in-law is a Syrian national living in Syria. Associated Press.

Lawmakers are considering adding to the list of illnesses that qualify for the legal use of medical marijuana as the state’s first dispensaries prepare to open in a few months. Star-Advertiser.

A third Hawaii medical marijuana contractor received state approval today to begin legally growing pakalolo. Star-Advertiser.

Dignitaries from Hawaii and Japan gathered at the Kaka'ako Waterfront Park on Thursday to remember those who lost their lives when a U.S. submarine collided with the Japanese ship Ehime Maru. Nine people were killed in the 2001 collision - including 4 teenage students. KITV.

Hundreds of corrections officers called in sick on the day of the NFL’s annual championship game. KHON2.

Oahu

Gov. David Ige announced three appointments to Oahu’s Circuit Court on Thursday, one of whom is his former campaign manager Keith Hiraoka, who resigned from that post last month when he found out that he had been chosen as a candidate by the Judicial Selection Commission. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. David Ige has appointed his former campaign manager, Keith Hiraoka, to fill the 1st Circuit Court seat that Judge Karen Ahn vacated when she retired in June. Civil Beat.

In an unusual move, two state Senate committees on Thursday elected to not vote on that chamber’s primary “vehicle” for funding the over-budget Honolulu rail project. Instead, the measure will be so heavily amended that it will require another public hearing. Civil Beat.

A measure that would extend the half percentage point general excise tax surcharge for the city's rail project is still alive, but with several changes and additions. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell will sign a bill into law providing TheBus riders the option to purchase a one-day pass. Hawaii News Now.

The wrecking ball now has a firm date with Ward Warehouse. Property owner Howard Hughes Corp. has informed the Kakaako retail complex’s roughly 60 tenants that they must vacate in August to make way for residential tower development. Star-Advertiser.

Bicyclists love new bike lane on McCully while residents struggle for parking. Hawaii News Now.

Honolulu is the best place in the United States to be a Realtor, according to a recent study by WalletHub. Pacific Business News.

A group representing survivors of sexual abuse and an organization representing the LGBTQ community are urging Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell to rescind his appointment of Marc Alexander to lead the city Office of Housing. Civil Beat.

Disney, Marvel Studios and IMAX are planning to develop a headquarters for Marvel’s next major project — a feature film and ABC television series “Marvels The Inhumans” — in a former Navy facility in Hawaii, the head of the state’s film commission confirmed to Pacific Business News this week.

Hawaii

Mayor Kim Wants To Reduce Two Percent Land Fund. Harry Kim would like to cut the amount set aside for public land purchases by half. Big Island Video News.

Mayor Harry Kim spent Wednesday evening at the Ocean View Community Center quelling wave after wave of frustration from an animated crowd of roughly 60 residents, many of whom feel the county has left them behind. West Hawaii Today.

Two lawmakers want to increase safety at a popular Puna swimming spot and vet the feasibility of a harbor at Kapoho Bay. Tribune-Herald.

With a county voucher program set to expire at the end of next month, Hawaii Island legislators once again are hoping to secure state funding that would help residents combat invasive little fire ants. Tribune-Herald.

The Hakalau Bridge on Old Mamalahoa Highway will be closed starting at 5 p.m. Friday because of public safety concerns, the county Department of Public Works said Thursday. Tribune-Herald.

A Kona District Court judge has disqualified himself from hearing the case of Sean “Peaman” Pagett, who was cited Christmas Day for running an unpermitted race at Kailua Pier. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

For many homeless people, the easiest place to turn for health care is often the emergency room, said Carol Petith-Zbiciak, doctor of nursing practice at the University of Hawaii Maui College. Maui News.

Kauai

Kauai Humane Society is among the animal welfare advocates descending upon the Hawaii Capitol today for Humane Lobby Day at the Legislature. Garden Island.

The Kauai County Council on Wednesday unanimously deferred a proposal to establish pedestrian access and parking easements in Koloa. Garden Island.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House is opening its sixth restaurant in Hawaii and first on Kauai at The Shops at Kukuiula on the island’s South Shore, the owner of the shopping complex confirmed to Pacific Business News Thursday.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Dengue fever spreads on Big Island, Ethics Commission probes lawmaker spending, special session set to confirm judges, Kewalo Basin development planned, Maui Dems to learn about presidential contenders, Lihue’s Town Core revitalization, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2015 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Hotels along Waikiki © 2015 All Hawaii News
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide is reportedly in talks with a couple of suitors, including Hyatt Hotels and multiple Chinese entities, and while anything is possible, a Hyatt-Starwood marriage could start some waves in Waikiki. Pacific Business News.

State Ethics Commission staff say lawmakers may have misused their taxpayer-funded annual allowances, and they plan to take a closer look at recent expenditures, particularly those for meals, hotels and event tickets. Star-Advertiser.

The Hawaii state Senate will convene in special session next week to consider three judicial nominations. Last week, Gov. David Ige appointed Shirley M. Kawamura, the current District Court Judge of the First Circuit, to the First Circuit Court, and Melvin H. Fujino, the current District Family Court Judge of the Third Circuit, to the Third Circuit Court. Also last week, Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald appointed James C. McWhinnie to the District Court of the First Circuit. Civil Beat.

State health officials are pulling overtime to resume posting inspection reports for long-term care facilities online as required by law, but so far it’s only for certain types of homes and there are no guarantees how long the agency will keep up with it. Civil Beat.

A bitter — and increasingly costly — dispute between an Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee and her fellow trustees is entering its third year, with no settlement in sight. Earlier this month a state circuit court judge in Honolulu set a trail date of Oct. 31, 2016, in the case of Akana v. Machado, named for Rowena Akana and Colette Machado, a former chairwoman of the OHA Board of Trustees. Civil Beat.

Oahu

After a decade of trying, Chad Callan and his team at the Oceanic Institute of Hawaii Pacific University have finally unlocked the mystery of the yellow tang. Star-Advertiser.

People who serve their full prison sentences are at great risk of becoming homeless on O’ahu. Hawaii Public Radio.

As part of a program that encourages people to get off public assistance, state officials recently gave a Waipahu family a $30,000 check. The money represented five years of savings: As part of the program, rather than the state keeping rent increases that public housing or Section 8 families must pay when their income goes up, those funds went into an escrow account. Hawaii News Now.

How much — or little — commercial development is appropriate around Hawaii’s only commercial small-boat harbor is being assessed by a state board after two developers presented revised proposals Thursday to develop underutilized state land bordering Kewalo Basin in Kakaako. Star-Advertiser.

A controversial permit request to construct a church, parking lot and other facilities on a Mililani Mauka site that serves as a water quality detention basin was approved Monday, despite opposition from several community members. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

At least two people, and likely four more, have been infected with dengue fever after being bitten by mosquitoes on the Big Island. Tribune-Herald.

Maui
Despite calls from the public for more openness and transparency, the Maui Liquor Control Commission waived its selection process again Wednesday - choosing not to solicit a list of applicants - and after meeting behind closed doors re-appointed Dana Souza as director of the Department of Liquor Control. Maui News.

The Maui County Democratic Party will host a County Committee Meeting and a Democratic Presidential Caucus Information Session on Tuesday, Nov. 3, starting at 6:30 p.m. at the Lihikai Elementary School Cafeteria in Kahului. Maui Now.

Kauai

Kauai’s vision for the future of Lihue’s Town Core is what helped secure $13 million in federal money to improve the city. Garden Island.

In the last dozen years, Ed Lyman has helped free 22 humpback whales from entanglements, recovering buoys and more than 9,000 feet of fishing line that were once wound around the bodies of these majestic endangered species. Garden Island.

Molokai
Native Hawaiian activist and Molokai resident Walter Ritte Jr. announced Wednesday that he is no longer seeking to be a delegate to a Native Hawaiian constitutional convention, calling the process "not pono" and asking others to boycott the election of delegates beginning next month. Maui News.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Navy war games violated federal law, flood insurance rates rising, Honolulu traffic jam underscores poor road planning, fired judge fires back, telescope protests continue, psychologists want to prescribe drugs, Kauai library celebrates 60th, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy U.S. navy
RIMPAC 2014 in Hawaii file photo, courtesy U.S. Navy
A federal judge in Honolulu says the National Marine Fisheries Service violated federal law in issuing a permit to the U.S. Navy to conduct sonar testing, underwater detonations and other activities over millions of square miles of ocean between Hawaii and the West Coast. U.S. District Court Judge Susan Oki Mollway sided with the Conservation Council for Hawaii, the Natural Resources Defense Council and a number of other environmental organizations in issuing her ruling Tuesday afternoon. Civil Beat.

A federal judge on Tuesday said the National Marine Fisheries Service violated environmental laws when it approved the Navy’s plans for training in waters off Hawaii and Southern California. The agency failed to support its finding that the training would have a “negligible impact” on marine life, U.S. District Court Judge Susan Oki Mollway wrote in her ruling. Associated Press.

Thousands of Hawaii property owners are about to be hit with a flood of higher premiums. About 20,000 people who carry flood insurance will see their annual policies increase an average 19.8 percent beginning today under changes to the National Flood Insurance Program. Star-Advertiser.

Civil Beat Database: Checking Up on Top State Officials Just Got a Lot Easier. Financial disclosures for top Hawaii officials are now available on a new searchable site to help the public identify potential conflicts of interest. Civil Beat.

About a dozen mental health advocates gathered Tuesday outside the fourth-floor office of Senate Health Chairman Josh Green at the state Capitol to demand that Green hold a hearing on a measure they believe would significantly improve mental health treatment in Hawaii, particularly in rural communities. Star-Advertiser.

Supporters of a bill to allow psychologists to prescribe medications in Hawaii gathered Tuesday at the state Capitol to plead with lawmakers to hear the measure. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaiian Electric Co. and Florida-based NextEra Energy Inc., which is buying the Honolulu-based utility for $4.3 billion, are urging the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission to not extend the deadline for the acquisition case, according to public documents. Pacific Business News.

A total of 420,409 firearms were registered in Hawaii from 2000 to 2014. And that’s on top of the 1 million firearms that were already in the state, according to an estimate by the Hawaii Attorney General’s office and the Honolulu Police Department in the late 1990s. That means there could be more guns in Hawaii than residents, according to data from the Attorney General’s office. Civil Beat.

From plastic bottles on the beach to trash along trailsides, illegal dumping can be seen around Hawaii. Hawaii Public Radio.

When plastic is washed or dumped into the ocean, it doesn’t completely break down…instead it adds to a dangerous plastic soup. Hawaii Public Radio.

Opinion: When it finally came down to it, the Chess Club, a faction of senators loyal to Gov. David Ige, decided not to support Carleton Ching, the governor’s choice to head the Department of Land and Natural Resources. Those senators don’t deserve sympathy for having to make an agonizing choice. That’s their job. What they deserve is criticism for doing that job so badly. Civil Beat.

Oahu
State Department of Transportation officials hope that Wednesday morning's commute will go smoothly — with the H-1 ZipperLane still open for town-bound traffic — but there's no guarantee that pau hana drivers won't see a repeat of Tuesday's carmageddon that caused widespread gridlock. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu ranks No. 3 in the country when it comes to traffic congestion. That’s according to the annual TomTom Traffic Index, which was released Tuesday. Civil Beat.

Honolulu was recently ranked the third worst city for traffic congestion in the nation but Tuesday evening’s traffic jam brought frustrations to new heights. As drivers heading westbound remained stuck for hours due to a broken ZipMobile, some took to Twitter to vent about #Zipnado aka #Carmageddon. Civil Beat.

Officials say both of the state's ZipMobiles are likely to remain broken until at least Wednesday afternoon as the transportation department await the arrival of replacement parts and a repair technician from the U.S. mainland. Hawaii News Now.

A state judge who was rejected by the Judicial Selection Commission has fired back, saying the commission's proceedings were unfair. In a March 21 letter obtained by Hawaii News Now, Circuit Judge Randal Lee alleged that commission members did not review his full record but relied heavily on a last-minute complaint by a city deputy prosecutor, whom he had removed from a case for misconduct.

Honouliuli Internment Camp closed 69 years ago, but shame, sorrow and regret still haunt the gulch called Jigoku-Dani, or Hell Valley, by the Japa­nese-Americans who were held there during World War II. The Kunia site, kept out of sight during the war and out of the American consciousness for decades after that, was dedicated in an emotional ceremony Tuesday as Hono­uli­uli National Monument. Star-Advertiser.

Two Honolulu City Council members want D.R. Horton to include cheaper housing in its planned 11,750-home development between Ewa and Kapolei. The Council’s Zoning and Planning Committee is planning to take up two amendments on Thursday when it considers Bill 3, a measure to rezone nearly 1,300 acres of prime farmland to make way for a new mixed-use community. Civil Beat.

A state judge has refused to order the forfeiture of 77 arcade sweepstakes machines Hono­lulu police seized in 2012 because the city prosecutor took too long to file the request. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

Implementing a “pay as you throw” garbage plan, allowing more East Hawaii garbage to be sent to the West Hawaii landfill and banning recyclables and compostables from both landfills are among Kohala Councilwoman Margaret Wille’s plans to bring the county closer to the goal of zero waste. West Hawaii Today.

Preventing the spread of little fire ants and other invasive species could add as much as $600,000 a year to county mulching operations. The council Finance Committee on Tuesday unanimously advanced county administration’s request to solicit contracts for up to $2.4 million annually for operations turning green waste into mulch at the county landfills in East and West Hawaii. West Hawaii Today.

Construction crews made no attempt Tuesday to reach the Thirty Meter Telescope site on Mauna Kea following a human blockade the day before as officials try to find a resolution to the standoff. Tribune-Herald.

Protesters who this week interrupted work on what's expected to be the world's largest telescope were put on notice Tuesday that they face arrest if they continue to block crews from reaching the Mauna Kea summit construction site. Star-Advertiser.

A Hawaii County fire battalion chief and captain are under investigation for criticizing the leadership of Fire Chief Darren Rosario in a story on Hawaii News Now earlier this month.

Maui

The cabins at Waiʻānapanapa State Park will close for approximately a year beginning today as a $2.3 million cabin renovation and wastewater treatment project gets underway. Maui Now.

A project to double the size of the Department of Motor Vehicle and Licensing satellite office in Kihei - the county's fastest-growing satellite office - has gone out to bid. Maui News.

Kauai

The Kapaa Public Library is celebrating its 60th anniversary on Tuesday starting at 1 p.m. with cake, refreshments and entertainment by the Kapaa Senior Center Ukulele Band. Garden Island.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ige widens lead in new poll, federal judge to hear Big Island GMO complaint today, Hawaii not ready for Ebola, commission undecided on PAC spending complaints, Senate panel advances judge nominees, Steven Tyler Maui nightclub plan falters, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2014 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Ige © 2014 All Hawaii News
State Sen. David Ige has the advantage in the campaign for governor, a new Hawaii Poll shows, scoring well with Japanese-Americans, seniors and union families who are among the most likely to vote in November. Ige, the Democrat, leads former Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona, the Republican, 47 percent to 35 percent. Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, the independent, is at 12 percent, while Jeff Davis, the Libertarian, is at 1 percent. Six percent remain undecided. Star-Advertiser.

Early voting has begun and the general election is just under two weeks away. Who will win the big races in Hawaii — for governor, the U.S. Senate, the 1st Congressional District and the 2nd Congressional District, according to the national experts? In short, Democrat David Ige has the edge over Republican Duke Aiona for governor, as does Democrat Mark Takai over Republican Charles Djou in the CD1 contest. Democrats Brian Schatz and Tulsi Gabbard, meanwhile, need not fear Republicans Cam Cavasso and Kawika Crowley in their Senate and CD2 races, respectively. Civil Beat.

copyright 2014 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Aiona © 2014 All Hawaii News
Fresh poll numbers for Hawaii’s top political races (sans the federal offices) are expected any day now, but by another metric there is already a clear frontrunner: David Ige, the Democratic Party nominee for governor, has held 15 campaign fundraisers since the Aug. 9 primary. Civil Beat.

Gubernatorial candidates James "Duke" Aiona and David Ige were treated like celebrities — cheered on by scores of screaming fans decked out in red, white and blue, toting hand-painted posters — at a student pep rally Wednesday at Maryknoll School. Star-Advertiser.

The state Campaign Spending Commission decided Wednesday to defer until November a complaint that former Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano filed against the super PAC that crushed his bid for mayor in 2012. Pacific Resource Partnership, a political action committee funded by contractors and unionized carpenters, spent over $3 million on a coordinated attack to keep Cayetano out of office after he pledged to end Honolulu’s $5.2 billion rail project if elected. Civil Beat.

The state Campaign Spending Commission on Nov. 19 will vote again on whether two complaints against the Pacific Resource Partnership Political Action Committee should be reviewed by state attorneys for criminal prosecution. The commission voted 2-1 Wednesday, failing to muster three votes to make a decision on whether to refer for review the two complaints — one by former Gov. Ben Cayetano and the other by commission Executive Director Kristin Izumi-Nitao. Star-Advertiser.

Officials said Wednesday Hawaii health care workers need more training to be sufficiently prepared to handle an Ebola virus outbreak. Star-Advertiser.

A Senate investigative committee is calling for major reforms to the Hawaii State Hospital in an effort to curb violence and restore trust in a mental health system that has been mismanaged for many years. On Wednesday, the committee, which is co-chaired by Hawaii Sens. Clayton Hee and Josh Green, issued its final report after holding nearly a dozen hearings in which top officials from the hospital and state Department of Health were subpoenaed to testify under oath. The report’s recommendations are wide-ranging and include everything from building a new state hospital — something that would cost hundreds of millions of dollars — to sending the most troublesome, violent patients to an out-of-state facility to receive treatment. Civil Beat.

A special State Senate committee convened to investigate problems at the Hawaii State Hospital Wednesday released a lengthy report about its findings and recommendations to improve the troubled facility. The 88-page report calls the state's only mental hospital outdated and overcrowded. It also said the facility suffers from bad management, a lack of training and chronic overtime and sick leave abuse, leading to assaults by mental patients against the staff. Hawaii News Now.

Scientists have found evidence of a massive tsunami that slammed into Hawaii nearly 500 years ago. That’s according to a new study released this week, that’s prompting state officials to re-examine their tsunami evacuation plans. Hawaii Public Radio.

Oahu

The contractor hired to dispose of seized commercial-grade fireworks in Honolulu says it will find another site for the job after residents of Nanakuli objected to blowing them up in their community. Michael De Sousa of URS Federal Services Inc. says the company will honor the state Department of Health's request to find another site. Associated Press.

A government contractor will find another site to dispose of 39 pallets of commercial-grade fireworks from a Waikele storage bunker after Nanakuli residents voiced strong opposition to setting them off on a property in their rural neighborhood. Star-Advertiser.

The city has been stockpiling hundreds of pounds of trash collected by street sweepers right in Kapiolani Park. The debris piles, located near the Waikiki Shell next to a city no dumping sign, includes asphalt, oil, gravel and plain old trash that's exposed to the elements. Hawaii News Now.

An accident that left an Ewa Beach man dead has now become even more tragic for the loved ones left behind because of a mistake by the Honolulu City Prosecutor’s office. KHON2.

Matson Terminals Inc., the company responsible for spilling 220,000 gallons of molasses into Honolulu Harbor in September 2013, has pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor violations of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, court records show. Hawaii Reporter.

Hawaii

A federal magistrate judge will be hearing arguments a lawsuit seeking to invalidate Hawaii County’s law restricting the use of genetically modified crops. Big Island agriculture groups and farmers filed a lawsuit in federal court in June seeking to overturn the law, which went into effect in December. Thursday’s hearing will be on the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment, which argues that the law is invalid on the grounds that it’s pre-empted by federal and state law. Associated Press.

The state Senate Judiciary Committee gave its unanimous approval Wednesday to the confirmation of Margaret Masunaga as a district judge in Kona, despite a negative rating by the Hawaii State Bar Association. West Hawaii Today.

The U.S. Small Business Administration is in Pahoa offering low-interest loans to victims of Tropical Storm Iselle. Loans are available to homeowners, renters, nonprofit organizations and businesses in Hawaii County that received damage related to the storm from Aug. 7-9. Tribune-Herald.

Big Island hunters will have more opportunities to bag feral pigs, goats and sheep under a package of changes to hunting rules set to go before the state Board of Land and Natural Resources on Friday. West Hawaii Today.

Some Ocean View residents aren’t waiting around for a new county garbage disposal facility. Instead, large quantities of trash are being dumped along the access road to the future site of the transfer station. West Hawaii Today.

A narrow finger of lava  along the southern edge of the main flow has now become the leading edge of the flow and advanced about 100 yards since Tuesday, Hawaii County Civil Defense officials said after an overflight Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

Maui
The Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission on Wednesday dismissed two complaints filed by a Paia political activist, one against a nonprofit industry trust fund and the other against a related super Political Action Committee, which have poured thousands of dollars in at least the Maui County Council West Maui residency race. Maui News.

State and county officials Wednesday closed down beaches from the Old Suda Store to Kalama Park in South Maui after a shark encounter — the third since Saturday on the Valley Isle. Star-Advertiser.

A plan to develop a new restaurant and nightclub in Hawaii involving Aerosmith frontman and part-time Maui resident Steven Tyler has likely been shelved, one of the operating partners told Pacific Business News.

The non-profit Lokahi Pacific community development corporation broke ground on a new affordable housing complex in Happy Valley on Maui. Maui News.

Veteran candidates vie for East Maui council seat. Maui News.

Kauai

Kauai County Councilman Tim Bynum says Kapaa New Town Park is a place that has not necessarily lived up to its name. Garden Island.

The Kauai County Council plans to rename the Kapaa New Town Park Facility the Mayor Bryan J. Baptiste Sports Complex. Associated Press.

Benches built to accommodate visitors to Kauai Veterans Cemetery were stolen just weeks after they were installed. Garden Island.

A former Department of Land and Natural Resources official pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Kauai Circuit Court to 30 counts of sex assault — a majority of which are alleged to have occurred when the female victim was a minor. Star-Advertiser.

Molokai

A single initiative on the November election ballot has the Molokai community in such a heated debate that “vote yes” and “vote no” only refer to one thing: whether or not the cultivation of all genetically engineered crops in Maui County should stop while studies are done examining effects on human health and the environment. Molokai Dispatch.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Matson fined $1M for molasses spill, campaign shenanigans abound, Department of Education wants more money, Gabbard seeks military impact on marine life, same-sex marriage ban moot, road to be connected over old lava flows, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy KHON2 TV
KHON2 file footage of 2013 molasses spill
Matson has agreed to pay $1 million to resolve all federal criminal charges tied to last year's 233,000-gallon molasses spill in Hono­lulu Harbor. The U.S. attorney here filed papers in federal court Tuesday charging Matson Terminals Inc. with two misdemeanor violations of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 — one charge for each day the molasses leaked into the harbor. Star-Advertiser.

Matson Inc. reached a plea agreement Tuesday with the U.S. Attorney in Hawaii on charges that the company illegally discharged more than 230,000 gallons of molasses into Honolulu Harbor in 2013, agreeing to pay a total penalty of $1 million. Pacific Business News.

Four complaints alleging campaign violations against the political action group Pacific Resource Partnership or its successor, Forward Progress, will be heard by the five-member Campaign Spending Commission at its meeting Wednesday. Star-Advertiser.

Commentary: It appears the Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission could devote some of Wednesday to chewing on the Pacific Resource Partnership, which, because of the money it flings around, is one of our most influential political players. Star-Advertiser.

Commentary:  The most recent public reports filed with the Campaign Spending Commission only covered the period through the Aug. 9 primary. All of the subsequent spending remains hidden. Civil Beat.

Early voting has started across the Hawaiian islands for state's general election. The Office of Elections opened the polls Tuesday for early absentee voters to cast their ballots. Polling stations on Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Big Island will be open until Nov. 1. Hawaii News Now.

Sen. Brian Schatz is publicly supporting the campaign to pass a constitutional amendment that would allow the state to use public funds to pay for private preschool programs. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is requesting information from the U.S. Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor about the Navy’s efforts to monitor the effects of the Rim of the Pacific military exercise and Kauai’s Pacific Missile Range Facility on the ocean and marine ecosystems. Garden Island.

The Hawaii Department of Education anticipates requesting an additional $159 million from the state during the next legislative session to cover expenditures in fiscal years 2016 and 2017. West Hawaii Today.

The Department of Education says it needs $19 million in emergency funding from the Legislature to cover shortfalls in its school lunch and bus transportation programs, or officials warned that meal prices might go up and some bus routes could be eliminated. Star-Advertiser.

The state Board of Education is giving Hawaii's public schools superintendent an "exceeds expectations" rating for the current year. The board said Tuesday public schools have made exceptional progress under Kathryn Matayoshi's leadership. Associated Press.

A 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling quietly ended a last-ditch court fight against a Hawaii law allowing same-sex marriage. The court issued an opinion earlier this month declaring moot a lawsuit filed by a Hawaii couple seeking to marry before the state legalized gay marriage last year. Associated Press.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Hawaii's marriage equality law makes a pending federal lawsuit moot, and instructed the lower court to dismiss the case. Star-Advertiser.

One of three judicial appointments pending this week in the state Senate has been labeled “unqualified” by the Hawaii State Bar Association despite significant testimony supporting her. Civil Beat.

Proponents of a state constitutional amendment to allow farmers, ranchers and owners of other agricultural endeavors to request special purpose revenue bonds say the measure won’t cost taxpayers any money. West Hawaii Today.

Anna Azevedo became the owner of a new $176,650 home on Department of Hawaiian Home Lands property earlier this year after spending 26 years waiting for a homestead. But her house — affordable by Hawaii standards — was built with a tool that could reduce the number of affordable-housing units for non-Hawaiians. The tool is a relatively new and controversial credit program that has largely simmered out of public view. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Last week, residents of east Honolulu found flyers in their mailboxes attacking Honolulu City Council District 4 candidate Tommy Waters as being a “carpetbagger.” Curiously, no one has acknowledged being responsible for the ad’s message — not even representatives of the super PAC that paid for it. Civil Beat.

Not in our neighborhood. That's the message in Nanakuli as families shot down a proposal to set off thousands of illegally shipped fireworks in a residential lot next to a large chicken farm. Hawaii News Now.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell said a perfect storm of events led to damage to the plant and yes, the city could have done better in trying to prevent Sunday’s massive wastewater spill at Sand Island. KHON2.

A palm-damaging coconut rhinoceros beetle has been found in Central Oahu — significantly expanding the known range of the palm pest on the island. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

Three of five bills aimed at reducing loopholes and making property tax collections more fair have survived their first reading at the County Council and will be considered a final time when the council meets early next month. West Hawaii Today.

Construction of the Chain of Craters alternate route will speed up Friday as bulldozers begin making a path over a wall of lava rock covering the road in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The $12 million to $15.5 million route, to be re-established between the park and Kalapana as a gravel road, could eventually be the only road in and out of lower Puna if the June 27 lava flow makes its way to the sea. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

You may have seen the ads all over local TV taking a stand against the genetically modified organism initiative. It’s a measure that'll be up for vote by the people of Maui County on next month’s ballot. KITV4.

Super PACs could impact West Maui race. 2014 Election: Outside funds help newcomer take on council incumbent. Maui News.

For council candidates, a civil race to Nov. 4. This story is part of a series of stories covering contested state legislative and Maui County contests leading up to the Nov. 4 general election. Maui News.

Several Maui projects will benefit from a funding release announced today by the governor for capital improvement projects administered by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Maui Now.

The Waikamoi Flume should be fully operational by next month as the rotting and aging redwood of the flume is being replaced with shiny new aluminum that will improve the reliability of the system and may increase water intake for Upcountry, county officials said. Maui News.

Kauai

Better visibility of bus schedules in tourism guides, more frequent service, and increased bus routes to areas like Lydgate Beach Park and Anini are among the suggestions that one resident had for Kauai Transportation Agency officials, who oversee The Kauai Bus operations. Garden Island.




Lanai

Applications for the 2015 Lānaʻi Axis deer hunting season are now available through the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Maui Now.

Kahoolawe

Promised Land: The Navy and the Damage Done. THIRD OF THREE PARTS: Kahoolawe still bears the scars of decades of bombing, and erosion unearths even more unexploded ordnance. State lawmakers wonder if it's time to try to compel the Navy to finish its cleanup. Civil Beat.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Honolulu airport third-worst, Say residency unresolved, Kona woman fights for judgeship, sewer spill on Sand Island, Kauai councilwoman wants GET tax for buses, hearing to be held on Ebola, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii government
Honolulu International Airport, courtesy Hawaii state government
Hawaii's main airport is the third-worst in North America in a recent survey of travelers. Honolulu International is not as bad as top-ranked LaGuardia International Airport in New York, or second-ranked Los Angeles International Airport, according to users of online travel site www.sleepinginairports.net. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii politics is in transition in the wake of the death of U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye and the retirement of U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka. The churn at the top has caused political uncertainty that might take several election cycles to settle. Here's a rundown of potentially competitive state House and Senate campaigns, which is based on information provided from political analysts, party strategists, campaign consultants and lawmakers. Star-Advertiser.

After nearly three decades in Hawaii politics, in a career that has seen roughly as many dramatic wins as huge losses, Mufi Hannemann has not lost his self-confidence. Civil Beat.

State House Speaker Joseph Souki said the House will not take up a challenge to former Speaker Calvin Say's residency before the November elections. Six Palolo voters have questioned whether Say lives in the Palolo state House district he has represented since 1976 or whether he actually lives with his family in Pauoa Valley. The voters lost a legal challenge in Circuit Court but plan to appeal. Star-Advertiser.

The speaker of the Hawaii House of Representatives says the chamber will not immediately consider a request to investigate Rep. Calvin Say’s residency qualifications. In a letter dated Oct. 17 to Lance Collins, the attorney for six Palolo residents who argue that Say no longer lives in District 20 and so should not represent them, Speaker Joe Souki said it would be “inappropriate” to address the “numerous assertions” made in Collins’ letter. Civil Beat.

Hawaii House Speaker Joseph Souki says the Legislature will not immediately resolve claims about the residency of Rep. Calvin Say. Say had been challenged in court by six Palolo voters who claim his main residence is outside the district. Say has represented the Palolo district for more than three decades. Associated Press.

As hospitals across the country prepare for a potential Ebola case, Hawaii officials are working on new guidelines to keep the state safe from the deadly virus. The director of Hawaii's Department of Health will also outline the state's strategy at a hearing this week at the state Capitol. Hawaii News Now.

Local officials are ramping up efforts to keep people in Hawaii safe from the Ebola virus. A new treatment protocol to deal with Ebola in Hawaii may be released later this week at a hearing at the State Capitol. KHON2.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has vacated a federal district court’s judgment in Jackson v. Abercrombie. The lawsuit challenged Hawaii’s 1998 ballot decision to give the Hawaii Legislature the authority to restrict marriage to one man and own woman. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s highly celebrated technology and cybersecurity czar started a new job Monday as the U.S. Treasury Department’s deputy assistant secretary and chief information officer. Sanjeev “Sonny” Bhagowalia spent the past three years helping the state develop and implement a 12-year plan to pull itself out of the dark ages and into the information age. Civil Beat.

Oahu

More than 100 workers and a dozen private contractors are scrambling to repair the critical Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant that was flooded by Hurricane Ana, which left behind 20 million gallons of untreated sludge that overwhelmed the plant Sunday morning and left it without power. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Rep. Karen Awana sharply criticized a plan Monday that calls for using a rural property on the Waianae Coast as a place to store and dispose of a large cache of illegal fireworks. The commercial-grade fireworks are the remnants of a stash that was involved in the 2011 explosion at a Waikele storage bunker that killed five people. Civil Beat.

The University of Hawaii will be examining dumped chemical weapons in deep water off the south coast of Oahu for the last time to see what effects they have on seawater, marine life and sediment. Star-Advertiser.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell plans to hold three public town hall-style meetings this week to address the affordable housing crisis on Oahu. Pacific Business News.

The videotape beating of a bystander by a Honolulu police officer has prompted a crackdown on bad behavior within the HPD's elite crime reduction units. Hawaii News Now.

Opinion: Why It’s So Difficult to Prosecute Domestic Abuse in Hawaii. Honolulu's prosecutor weighs in on domestic violence and actions that he's hoping will help ease the situation. Civil Beat.

Hawaii

An army of public officials rushed to the defense of Margaret Masunaga, a Hawaii County deputy corporation counsel, after the Hawaii State Bar Association deemed her unqualified to be a district judge. West Hawaii Today.

A plan to open a recycling redemption center in the Seaview Center subdivision has some neighbors concerned. West Hawaii Today.

The leading edge of the June 27 lava flow remained at a standstill Monday. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii County is providing early walk-in voting in Puna in case the June 27 lava flow interferes with Election Day. Tribune-Herald.

A University of Hawaii professor submitted a stinging critique of the planned expansion of a West Hawaii fish farm. The final environmental assessment, which included Frazer’s comments, was released several days ago. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

The Island of Maui was dethroned from its top spot as the best island in the world after earning the accolade for 20 consecutive years between and 1993 and 2013 in the annual ranking conducted by Condé Nast Traveler magazine. Maui Now.

Some Maui residents are not happy about the Health Department's new rules on cesspools. They claim the rules do not consider the interests of rural communities on the Neighbor Islands, where the vast majority of cesspools in the state are located. Hawaii Public Radio.

About 1,100 free-roaming and feral cats loiter around Kanaha Beach Park and surrounding areas in Kahului, according to a December survey, and researchers say "serious management attention" should be paid to control the cat population in that region. Maui News.

Researchers are concerned about the number of cats near a Maui wildlife sanctuary that's home to endangered birds. A survey in an area that includes Kanaha Pond State Wildlife Sanctuary found more than 1,000 free-roaming and feral cats. Associated Press.

Kauai

Kauai County Councilwoman JoAnn Yukimura says more must be done to ensure that the county’s public transportation system remains viable and becomes a key part in alleviating traffic congestion throughout the island. A proposal that Yukimura is slated to introduce during Wednesday’s County Council meeting could allow for one of those funding sources to be a county surcharge tacked on to the state’s 4 percent general excise tax, which is levied on business activities in Hawaii and is reflected on many consumer purchases, including food and groceries. Garden Island.

The state Department of Health is requesting access to Grove Farm Company property in Mahaulepu in an effort to pinpoint how large amounts of bacteria are ending up Waiopili Stream. Garden Island.

The state Intermediate Court of Appeals dealt a setback to the owner of a former North Shore commercial boatyard owner in his attempts to prove the County of Kauai had revoked his operation permit for a false purpose. Garden Island.

Friends of Mahaulepu will host a public meeting Thursday to discuss legal remedies concerning Hawaii Dairy Farms’ proposed $17.5 million, 578-acre dairy in Mahaulepu Valley. Garden Island.

Kahoolawe
Promised Land: ‘Where Beauty is Alongside the Ugliness’ SECOND OF THREE PARTS: As they sweat through the monumental task of restoring an island decimated by ranching, goats and bombs, workers' efforts are infused with respect for its history and significance to Native Hawaiians. But at least one activist questions whether it's worth all the effort. Civil Beat.