Showing posts with label national parks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label national parks. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Too hot for humpbacks? Ige signs affordable housing bills, Honolulu historic homes could lose tax break, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Humpback whales may avoid Hawaii due to climate change, study shows. The findings of a new paper by researchers at the University of Hawaii and the Pacific Whale Foundation suggest that the whales may one day avoid the relatively shallow ocean around the Hawaiian islands because the waters will be too warm. Star-Advertiser. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now.

Hawaii national park sites attracted 4 million visitors in 2021, study finds. Nearly 4 million people visited Hawaii’s eight national park units in 2021, spending an estimated $438 million in local communities across the state, according to a National Park Service report. Star-Advertiser.

Water conservation top of mind for some hotels, tourism businesses.
Drought conditions in the islands are expected to worsen this summer, concerning water supply officials. Residents have been asked to conserve water. But what about visitors? Hawaii Public Radio.

Gov. Ige signs bills to fund affordable housing and ʻOhana Zones. Gov. David Ige signed three bills on Friday relating to affordable housing. The new measures will support the Ohana Zones and First-To-Work programs. Hawaii Public Radio. Big Island Video News.

Second all-mail election offers some changes. Elections are coming up, and ballots can be cast just weeks from now in the 2022 primary. There are lots of changes this year. KHON2.

Redrawn districts present choices for voters. Many Hawaii residents will get a new representative in the state Legislature later this year — even if their current representative is running for reelection and wins. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s GOP primary candidates test the party’s values. The overall mood of the Hawaii Republican Party in 2022 likely will be revealed through the Aug. 13 primary election when voters have a choice of a diverse slate of candidates who appeal to distinctly different tastes. Star-Advertiser.

U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele gets key union backing, Lt. Gov. Josh Green adds to long list. U.S. Rep. Kai Kahele received a needed endorsement in his gubernatorial bid Thursday from the United Public Workers union, while opponent Lt. Gov. Josh Green simultaneously was endorsed by the AFL-CIO, adding to Green’s long list of support from Hawaii labor unions. Star-Advertiser.

Schools wrestle with effects of Supreme Court ruling on coach’s prayer. A U.S. Supreme Court ruling that a high school football coach in Washington state had a constitutional right to pray at the 50-yard line after games has provoked strong reactions and left public school officials in Hawaii and across the nation struggling to discern how it might affect policies and religious acts on campuses and at school-related activities. Star-Advertiser.

Civil Beat Law Center Goes To Court To Make Prison Covid-19 Reports Public. The state refuses to release the health care monitoring reports, saying they are confidential under the terms of a federal court settlement. Civil Beat.

Oahu

Property tax incentives for historic homes reexamined. The Honolulu City Council might take a look at modifying the historic homes property tax exemption to increase the minimum tax payment or possibly remove the exemption altogether. Star-Advertiser.

HART Mum On Where Pivotal ‘Mauka Shift’ Approvals Stand. It’s not clear why HART is moving ahead before confirming which environmental approvals are needed and how long they might take. Civil Beat.

Fuel Spewed ‘Full Blast’ Into Red Hill Tunnel In November. As fuel rained down, creating a virtual river on the concrete floor of a Red Hill facility tunnel in November, the worker who accidentally triggered the leak found himself powerless to stop it. Civil Beat.

Officer who led Army’s Red Hill response is promoted to general. Col. Phillip “Cain” Baker, the 25th Infantry Division’s deputy commander for support, was promoted to brigadier general Friday in a small ceremony at the Schofield Barracks attended by family and friends. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian ‘Occupied Forces’ Group Ousted From Kunia Property By Police.
The squatters had taken over the private property nine months ago claiming they had title under laws of the Hawaiian Kingdom. Civil Beat.

Former federal ACO agrees to pay $100K to settle sex assault lawsuit. A former prison guard at the Federal Detention Center has agreed to pay $100,000 to two former female inmates who alleged he sexually assaulted them. Hawaii News Now.

Building damage estimated to be over $1.1M to historic Boyd-Irwin Estate with ties to Hawaiian royalty. The Honolulu Fire Department has determined the building fire that consumed the historic Boyd-Irwin Estate in Maunawili last month is estimated to have caused more than $1.137 million in damage. Star-Advertiser.

Makaha Valley Resort sold to South Korean company, KH Group at $20.7 million. A U.S. bankruptcy judge has approved a sale of 644 acres in Makaha Valley, positioning a South Korean company to develop the property previously slated for a resort featuring a golf course designed by Tiger Woods. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Feedback sought about EA for HVNP recovery effort. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has opened a comment period for community feedback about an environmental assessment for its proposed disaster recovery project to repair damage caused by the 2018 volcanic eruption and summit collapse on Kilauea volcano. Tribune-Herald.

Vacation rental rules remain unclear: County continues enforcement while awaiting ICA opinion. Hawaii County continues to enforce its prohibition against short-term vacation rentals in the state agricultural district despite a Kona judge’s ruling that the state doesn’t disallow that use as the county has claimed. West Hawaii Today.

County poised to award PONC grants.
Improvements at Amy B. H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden top the list of awards to nonprofits the administration is recommending for the use of property tax funds earmarked for the county Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources Commission. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Long-Awaited Maui Ag Department Set To Be Finally Up And Running This Week. The director of Maui’s newly launched county department of agriculture is expected to be announced on Wednesday following an almost two-year wait. Civil Beat. Maui Now.

Maui County Council Races: ‘Crucial’ Election May Bring A Political Shake-Up. The council’s progressive majority may change in an election where cost of living and the economy top the list of concerns. Civil Beat.

MPO mulls flexing federal funds to buy new buses. Public comments on the revised Federal Fiscal Year 2022-2025 Transportation Improvement Program is now being accepted by Maui MPO — the transportation planning agency for the island of Maui — through Friday. Maui News.

Maui’s top public health official wants an apology from state lawmakers. Dr. Lorrin Pang says it time for his critics to say they are sorry. Pang faced major backlash last year when he did not condemn controversial COVID-19 treatments like ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine. Hawaii News Now.

Kauai

Brun distributor gets 2 years in prison
. After a 20-year prison sentence was imposed on former Kaua‘i County Councilmember turned meth dealer Arthur Brun this May, the court has begun mopping up the cases of his 11 co-conspirators. Garden Island.

Hanapepe native Fujii to get Medal of Honor Tuesday. Specialist Five Dennis M. Fujii of Hawai‘i is one of four people who will receive the Medal of Honor on July 5 from President Joseph R. Biden Jr., states a June 27 release from the White House. Garden Island. KITV4.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Disasters, breakdowns bring national park visitors down, 10 tiny home homeless villages proposed, plastic ban advances, money in Honolulu City Council race, Maui jail riot highlights overcrowding, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2019 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
After the eruption, visitors at Kilauea volcano ©2019 All Hawaii News
Parks losing traction with visitors. The latest visitation statistics released by the National Park Service show that 2018 was a particularly challenging year for some of the state’s busiest tourist attractions, with associated park economies taking a hit. Star-Advertiser.

Bottles, utensils and bags: Lawmakers are coming for your single-use plastics. An ambitious measure that would institute a broad ban on single-use plastics in Hawaii -- including plastic bottles, utensils and straws -- is gaining traction at the state Legislature despite widespread concern among businesses. Hawaii News Now.

Bill To Create An Airport Corporation Advances — With A Very Big Catch. Backers of an independent corporation to run Hawaii’s airports say it needs freedom from the state’s time-consuming procurement process. Key lawmakers disagree. Civil Beat.

Desperate to ease the homeless crisis, state leaders want to set up permanent villages made up of clusters of tiny homes. Lt. Gov. Josh Green says he wants to see up to 10 villages statewide with six on Oahu, two on the Big Island and one each of Maui and Kauai. Hawaii News Now.

State pushes for comprehensive review of EMS statewide. The state Department of Health wants a review of EMS systems across the state, following reports of  ambulances breaking down while on an emergency call. KHON2.

Some state lawmakers push for statewide EMS system review. The last review was in 1991. KITV.

Nonprofits Get 3 Nerve-Wracking Minutes To Make Pitch To Legislators. Nearly 300 Hawaii organizations seek grant-in-aid funding from the state. Most will probably fail. Civil Beat.

The governor, department heads and state legislators are set to get modest to sizable pay raises under a salary schedule approved by the Commission on Salaries this week. Hawaii News Now.

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Maui Riot Just The Latest Sign Of Trouble In State’s Overcrowded Jails. Pretrial detainees make up a big part of the inmate population. Meanwhile, most proposed reforms appear dead in Legislature. Civil Beat.

Man accepts 5-years in prison to get away from jail. Conditions in MCCC ‘out of control,’ he says. Maui News.

21 Maui Inmates Transferred to Halawa After Riot. The pretrial detainees were upset about jail overcrowding, according to Public Safety Director Nolan Espinda. Civil Beat.

MCCC Inmates Identified In Riot Transferred to Halawa. State corrections officials transported 21 pre-trial detainees to Halawa Correctional Facility today who were identified as participants in Monday's riot at a Maui jail. Hawaii Public Radio.

A total of 21 inmates were transferred from the Maui Community Correctional Center in Wailuku to the Halawa Correctional Facility on Oahu this morning. Maui Now.

Maui inmates involved in disturbance transferred to Halawa Correctional Facility. KHON2.

Department of Public Safety moves 21 inmates from MCCC to Halawa Correctional Facility. KITV.

Oahu

State won’t pay rail invoices subject to subpoena by feds. The state has warned the Honolulu rail authority that it will not release funding for invoices that are being scrutinized by the federal government as part of the ongoing federal investigation of the city rail project, according to state Comptroller Curt Otaguro. Star-Advertiser.

Kaneshiro not in charge, acting prosecutor says. Acting Prosecuting Attorney Dwight Nadamoto insisted Thursday that he is in charge of day-to-day operations at the city prosecutor’s office despite several visits in the past week by Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro, who is on paid leave. Star-Advertiser.

The Honolulu City Council questions new acting prosecutor Dwight Nadamoto. KHON2.

Spending soars in special election race for City Council seat. A Hawaii News Now analysis of campaign spending records shows that Tommy Waters is outspending Trevor Ozawa nearly three-to-one for the race for the east Honolulu City Council seat. Hawaii News Now.

The Honolulu City Council heard budget proposals from emergency personnel departments on Thursday. There weren't major increases from Honolulu Police and Honolulu Fire Departments, both asking for an additional 1.5% increase from last year's budget. KHON2.

Ala Wai project will affect 37 private properties. A $345 million project to lessen flood risks at the Ala Wai Canal is moving quickly through the state Legislature despite concerns from property owners, including 37 who would be directly affected. Star-Advertiser.

Lawmaker wants solution to keep large trucks from hitting overpass. Representative John Mizuno, whose district is next to the overpass, says he's very concerned that this keeps happening and wants the Transportation Department to survey the overpass for any improvements. KHON2.

Hawaii Island

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs lawsuit against the University of Hawaii and the State over the management of Mauna Kea will continue in Honolulu Circuit Court, both sides report, although one of two motions to dismiss was granted. Big Island Video News.

Times of the signs: Holiday Inn still waiting, 5 years later, for sign approval. An application for downsized signs for the Holiday Inn in Kailua-Kona is making its way to the Kailua Village Design Commission, five years after developers first sought permission to erect the trademark franchise signs. West Hawaii Today.

Three bills seeking to encourage redevelopment of Hilo’s Banyan Drive hotel area remain alive in the state Legislature. Tribune-Herald.

County offers to pick up vehicle disposal fees in short-term. Starting today and ending on April 30, the Department of Environmental Management Derelict/Abandoned Vehicle Section is accepting applications into a short-term program to pick up the disposal fees for any resident wanting to rid themselves of their rides. West Hawaii Today.

Ige releases funds for North Hawaii Community Hospital emergency department. Gov. David Ige released on Thursday $500,000 for construction of North Hawaii Community Hospital’s expanded emergency department. West Hawaii Today.

Geologists offer new insights into frequency of devastating waves. A paper from the U.S. Geological Survey suggests tsunamis like the one that devastated Hilo in 1946 might be predictable — and more frequent than previously thought. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

The Liquor Control Department is proposing new rules that include allowing dispensers and restaurants to sell liquor for off-premises consumption. Maui News.

A study of 22,000 coral colonies at 51 sites along Maui’s south and west shores found formally protected reefs near managed areas were among the most likely to show resilience to climate change. Star-Advertiser.

Resilient Reefs on Maui, Threats Identified. Maui Now.

Maui's most resilient reefs found in State marine managed areas. KHON2.

‘Renaissance man’ Reeser, former national park superintendent, dies. Supporter of groups and environment initiated fencing to keep out goats. Maui News.

Kauai

In a 35-minute talk before about 150 people, Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami outlined his first 100 days in office, his proposed budget and his goals for the road ahead as this island’s highest-elected leader. Garden Island.

Kunoa announces expansion to operations, executive team. Local livestock processor Kunoa Cattle Company announced the growth of its Kauai ranch operations Wednesday. Pacific Business News.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Hawaii House updates sexual harassment policy, expired tax credit costs millions, audit says DLNR mismanaged land fund, security cameras for Waikiki, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

photo courtesy Hawaii House majority
Press conference on House sexual  harassment policy PC:House Majority
Hawaii’s House of Representatives has revamped its sexual harassment policy following pressure brought on by the #MeToo movement and resignation of former Rep. Joe Souki last year amid complaints by several women that he had made unwanted advances toward them, including sexual comments, touching and kissing. Star-Advertiser.

Why Critics Say New House Sexual Harassment Policy Doesn’t Go Far Enough. They say the policy is a  “good first step” that meets many national best practices, but it lacks an appeals process and requires secrecy even after cases are resolved. Civil Beat.

State House Unveils Workplace Harassment Policy. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii House of Representatives updates workplace harassment policy. KHON2.

House lawmakers proposing changes to harassment policy. State House lawmakers are vying to significantly revamp harassment policies at the Capitol. KITV.

House harassment policy can be found here.

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This Long-Expired High-Tech Tax Credit Is Still Costing Hawaii Millions. The state awarded $289.1 million in tax credits in 2016, including $16.3 million for a program that no longer exists. Civil Beat.

A multimillion-dollar state fund to acquire private land for conservation purposes has been poorly managed by the Department of Land and Natural Resources, hampering its effectiveness, accountability and transparency, according to a state audit. Star-Advertiser.

The state Board of Education last month voted behind closed doors to extend Superintendent Christina Kishimoto’s contract by one year, but a question has arisen about whether the action was proper. Star-Advertiser.

The State Department of Agriculture briefed members of the Senate today on some of its budget priorities. Hawaii Public Radio.

Filmmaker Settles Lawsuit After Hawaii Grants Him Tax Credits. Tim Chey had charged the state film office discriminated against him because it didn’t like his Christian-themed historical drama. Civil Beat.

By Land And Sea, The Shutdown Takes Its Toll On Hawaii. A recent study finds the latest federal budget impasse is hitting the islands especially hard. Civil Beat.

With the partial government shutdown now in its third week, federal employees in Hawaii are feeling the impacts. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Fifty new security cameras will be installed in Waikiki, to the delight of the Waikiki Neighborhood Board. KHON2.

A vintage military fighter jet that was ditched at sea off Kewalo Basin on Dec. 12 with the pilot ejecting seconds before has been located in pieces in about 300 feet of water, the Coast Guard said. Star-Advertiser.

Pearl Harbor Tour company owner says, "we're struggling" as government shutdown continues. KHON2.

After 94 years of educating Hawaii’s youth, Saint Francis School will close its middle and high schools at the end of the academic year in May, its board announced Monday, citing loss of financial assistance. Star-Advertiser.

Saint Francis to lay off dozens of teachers, do away with upper grades. Hawaii News Now.

St. Francis School closing grades 7 through 12. The 87th, and final graduation ceremony will be held on May 25th. KITV.

Home sales on Oahu dropped by 28 percent last month, compared to December 2017, even as the median price of single-family homes rose 5 percent to $788,000. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Big Island prosecutors dealt with what they consider an alarming number of domestic strangulation cases last year — more than 50. Tribune-Herald.

Community volunteers maintain, monitor deserted national park. It was 18 days ago a partial government shutdown took effect, closing and de-staffing places like Puuhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park in South Kona and leaving them unguarded from public whim. West Hawaii Today.

As the partial government shutdown enters its third week – reportedly with no end in sight – the signs of a federal funding lapse are becoming apparent at Puuhonua o Honaunau. Big Island Video News.

The Department of Public Safety reports that the old Hilo County Jail (built in the 1890s) is set for demolition soon. Big Island Now.

Home sales slowed on Big Island last year, but Kilauea fails to stop prices from rising. Home sales on Hawaii’s Big Island declined by 7 percent in 2018, compared to the year before, but the eruption of Kilauea volcano failed to stop prices, buoyed by double-digit gains in December, from rising. Pacific Business News.

Maui

Some 1.2 acres of land in Kapalua, Maui will be preserved as open space along the Kapalua Coastal Trail due to a donation from the Sue D. Cooley Trust, the Hawaiian Island Land Trust announced today. Star-Advertiser.

Hemp growers see hope on horizon after change in federal law. Cannabis growers looking for the next big thing after CBD craze. Maui News.

Kauai

As Hawaii looks at ways to become more self-sufficient in food production, people on Kauai are planting seeds that will feed the community decades down the road. Garden Island.

The National Tropical Botanical Garden and Kauai Community College present their first collaborative event of 2019 in the ongoing Earth Matters public lecture series at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday with a panel discussion, “Building Resilience in the Face of Climate Change.” Garden Island.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Schatz, Congressional reps push for federal responsibility for missile alerts; police have job protections, Ige appoints new budget chief, Big Island council pans GET hike, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park 2018 All Hawaii News
The National Park Service is proposing a Tri-Park Pass fee increase from $30 to $50 for Hawaii parks, starting May 1. Star-Advertiser.

The new interim head of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency has taken over, but Brig. Gen. Moses Kaoiwi said ballistic missile alert drills will stay on hiatus until he is assured that the department has a new action plan and the proper resources to move forward. Star-Advertiser.

There have been no new death threats this week against the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency and its employees over the Jan. 13 bogus missile alert, but state officials want police to track down people who may have crossed the line in venting their frustrations in the aftermath. Star-Advertiser.

In response to Hawaii’s false missile alert in January, Hawaii’s congressional leaders are pushing for legislation that would call for major changes in alerting the public should a missile attack actually happen. Hawaii News Now.

Schatz introduces legislation requiring federal government responsibility over missile alerts. KITV.

Schatz pushes for federal control of missile threat alert systems. West Hawaii Today.

Calling the Jan. 13 false missile alert an unfortunate event, Gov. David Ige says the state has been busy building a better emergency warning system. Garden Island.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige on Tuesday appointed Laurel Johnston to serve as the director of the state Department of Budget and Finance. Pacific Business News.

The Army has a navy in Hawaii, and on Tuesday it formally welcomed its third 273-foot logistics support vessel, a flat-bottom cargo transport ideal for the islands and shallow-water littorals and ports of the Pacific. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

New HPD Report Shows Just How Hard It Is To Fire A Bad Cop. Dozens of Honolulu Police Department officers are disciplined each year but a lengthy appeal process often delays final decisions. Civil Beat.

The police union has filed a legal complaint with the state labor board claiming its leaders are being mistreated by HPD's new chief. Hawaii News Now.

House Committee Advances Red Hill Fuel Tank Regulations. The Board of Water Supply is continuing its push for legislation to upgrade the Navy’s Red Hill Fuel Storage tanks. Hawaii Public Radio.

Multiple state and county agencies are now investigating after three children whose fathers work at the same Waipahu fire house fell ill with bone cancer. Hawaii News Now.

Female Athletes Get The Short End Of The Stick At Some Hawaii High Schools. Federal law requires gender equity, but that’s not happening in places like Campbell High School. Civil Beat.

Mother: School discriminated against disabled son by not allowing him on a field trip. Hawaii News Now.

Boy denied social security card due to complications with long Hawaiian name. KHON2.

Residents frustrated with abandoned car ‘graveyards’ across Oahu. KHON2.

Oahu condo prices set record in January. The median price for condominiums sold in January reached a new high of $430,000 off a 13.2 percent gain over the $380,000 median price in the same month last year, according to a Honolulu Board of Realtors report released Tuesday. Star-Advertiser.

Jeff Perkins has been named general manager of Honolulu's Queen Kapiolani Hotel, which recently began a $35 million renovation that was first announced in July. Pacific Business News.

New owners put sidelined food trucks back in service. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Council advances tax increase, but with negative recommendation. West Hawaii Today.

A discussion on a proposed, county-level general excise tax became heated on Tuesday, as the Hawaii County Council Finance Committee met in Hilo. Big Island Video News.

A Hawaii County Council committee advanced bills Tuesday allowing the Pahoa District Park to host a farmers market and renaming two park facilities, including one in honor of the late Dorothy Thompson. Tribune-Herald.

In June, Puna Kai shopping center will hand over store pad sites to Malama Market and Aloha Petroleum for their own construction, the developer told the Tribune-Herald on Tuesday. Tribune-Herald.

The mother of Peter Kema Jr., aka “Peter Boy,” has been ordered to report to Hawaii Community Correctional Center Wednesday morning for violating conditions of her HOPE probation. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Bill 6, which will make it illegal for adults to smoke in a vehicle when a minor is present, has passed Maui County Council. Maui Now.

Anaergia, Maui EKO open green waste dialogue. Meetings aimed at continuing green waste processing at landfill. Maui News.

Commercial waste haulers need to pay fees. Maui News.

An estimated 75 applicants and families attended a lottery event for the Kahoma Village development held on Jan. 26, in West Maui. Maui Now.

Maui Electric Co. said Tuesday it has agreed to buy electricity from a grid-scale solar and battery energy storage facility to be built by Molokai New Energy Partners. Star-Advertiser.

Maui Electric Company has agreed to buy electricity from a grid-scale solar and battery energy storage facility to be built by Molokai New Energy Partners, a project company representatives say could lower the island’s electric bills. Maui Now.

Kauai

The Imperiled Legacy Of The Hanapepe Salt Flats. The last frontier of a centuries-old Hawaiian tradition is threatened from the air, from the sea, and from broken beer bottles. Civil Beat.

A bill proposed by the County of Kauai Parks and Recreation Department could end peddling at county parks, playgrounds, other facilities and beaches, including the concessions sold at Spouting Horn Park. Garden Island.

Gov. David Ige stopped by the Samuel Mahelona Memorial Hospital to visit the resident population of about 50, the hospital’s staff, and view work being done with the $6.6 million Capital Improvement Project appropriation by the Legislature. Garden Island.

Ige, teachers on same page. Garden Island.

The median price of a single-family home on Kauai jumped by 22 percent last month to $770,000, compared to January of last year, while sales of both single-family homes and condominiums declined, according to statistics provided by Hawaii Information Service on behalf of the Kauai Board of Realtors. Pacific Business News.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Slew of bills include plastic straw ban, raises for teachers, DUI jail times; Rapoza to run for Kauai mayor, GET hike mulled, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2018 All Hawaii News all rights reserved
Snorkeler in Hawaii ©2018 All Hawaii News
Years of drownings highlight critical gaps in ocean safety education. Drowning — mostly while snorkeling at beaches with no lifeguards — is the biggest killer of tourists and has been for over a decade. KHON2.

Officials working to get a handle on spate of ocean-related deaths. Ocean safety urged as deaths spike: Over about 2 weeks last month, 9 men died in the waters off Maui. Maui News.

Overwhelming support at an initial hearing for a ban on plastic straws led to tentative approval last week from state lawmakers who were urged to act in a plea from 10-year-old Rylee Brooke Kamahele of Kipapa Elementary School. Star-Advertiser.

State Rep. Gene Ward wanted Gov. David Ige to release “security tapes” from the morning of Jan. 13 when the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency issued a false missile attack alert, but a spokesman for the agency says there are no such audio or video recordings. Star-Advertiser.

Gov. David Ige said Saturday he is confident last month’s false alarm about a ballistic missile heading toward Hawaii won’t happen again and he stands by his decision to begin the drills in the first place. Tribune-Herald.

State Rep. Kaniela Ing is proposing a state task force to study whether a government job can be provided for everyone who needs one. Star-Advertiser.

State lawmakers are considering a bill that would cap public school class sizes at 20 students and increase the new teacher salary to $55,000 per year. Tribune-Herald.

Private school enrollment shrinks in favor of public charter schools. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Auditor Demands Investigation Into Leak Of OHA Audit. Les Kondo says a release to the media of a draft audit into problems at the Office of Hawaiian Affairs violated state ethics law. Civil Beat.

Hawaiian Is An Official Language So Why Isn’t It Used More? The dispute about whether a protester could testify in Hawaiian in court highlights the gap between the state’s two official languages. Civil Beat.

Critics race to stop bill to ban youth runners in long-distance events. Hawaii News Now.

New bill would require all boaters to purchase insurance for their vessels. KITV.

Bill aimed at extending jail time for those convicted of drunk driving. KITV.

A slew of bills focused on revising the state’s medical marijuana dispensary system have been introduced during the 2018 legislative session. Tribune-Herald.

Commentary: When Does Hawaii’s Famous ‘Aloha Kiss’ Become Sexual Harassment? In Hawaii’s hugging culture, it’s hard to tell when the traditional hug and kiss is innocent or inappropriate. Civil Beat.

Commentary: Fascinating to see who’s donated, and how much, to Ige and Hanabusa. Star-Advertiser.

The number of patients visiting the hospital for influenzalike illnesses has been on the rise, and now places Hawaii in the same category as most of the nation for flu activity, according to the state Health Department. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii bankruptcies jumped 8.3 percent in January after finishing 2017 down for the seventh year in a row. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu

Seniors in a Kakaako housing complex are worried they will end up on the street after receiving notices that their rent is scheduled to go up to $916 per month, a sharp increase from the current monthly rate of $675. Civil Beat.

The FBI is investigating four Honolulu police officers who are accused of forcing a man to place his mouth on a urinal inside a public restroom, according to the police department’s top official. Associated Press.

Kealohas stopping mortgage payments could threaten legal team. Hawaii News Now.

The second of three new Coast Guard cutters to be stationed in Hawaii arrived Sunday, strengthening the capabilities for search and rescue operations around Hawaii. Star-Advertiser.

Mighty Mo’s $3.5M upper-deck renovation done. Star-Advertiser.

Here’s A Novel Idea To Help The Homeless — Vending Machines. A British charity plans to set up vending machines where homeless people can get items they need to survive on the streets. Civil Beat.

Rents decline in Honolulu, but Zumper, Apartment List reports differ on how much. Pacific Business News.

Officials with Haseko (Hawaii) Inc. intend to appeal a Circuit Court judge’s ruling that ordered the developer of Ocean Pointe and Hoakalei to pay $20 million to homeowners because of the company’s decision to change the plan from a marina to a recreational lagoon at the resort community in Ewa Beach. Pacific Business News.

Spectrum Hawaii, formerly Oceanic Time Warner, will shuffle the channel lineup as part of its plan to switch its signal from analog to digital. It says that switch result in increased broadband speeds and more HD channels. But local station Olelo may be left out in the cold. Hawaii Public Radio.

Hawaii Island

GET hike coming to council. Are smoother roads and better buses worth an extra half-penny at the register? West Hawaii Today.

Challengers in two key state legislative races are literally giving incumbents a run for the money, according to reports filed with the state Campaign Spending Commission. West Hawaii Today.

A bill to fund lifeguards at a popular, yet perilous, North Kona beach passed its first reading in the state House. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

Upholding a lower court decision, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that a Lahaina sewage treatment plant is violating the U.S. Clean Water Act by allowing wastewater to reach the ocean. Star-Advertiser.

Invasive species officials estimate that 2 to 3 acres in Kaeleku in East Maui are infested with little fire ants and treatments of the area will be ongoing for a little over a year. Maui News.

During the first half of fiscal year 2018, the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development issued nearly $6 million dollars in grant monies to various local organizations. Maui Now.

A proposed 67 percent fee increase from $30 to $50 for annual passes for three Hawaii national parks, including Haleakala National Park, will be reviewed during a Feb. 12 public hearing in Pukalani. Maui News.

Kauai

Mel Rapozo files for mayoral run. Garden Island.

Kauai Island Utility Cooperative announced Friday that the board has put money toward environmental studies for the Blue Hole and Waikoko diversions, which support the cooperative’s request for a long-term lease for the two diversions. Garden Island.

County officials are reminding Kauai property owners that the second installment of real property taxes for the 2017-18 tax year are due on Feb. 20. Garden Island.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Honolulu mulls high-rise sprinkler retrofits, WIC program trimmed, DOT dismantles homeless camps, Waikiki flotilla enforcement sought, Maui hospital takeover deemed a success, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2017 All Hawaii News
Honolulu high-rises © 2017 All Hawaii News
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s bill to require that older residential high-rises be retrofitted with sprinklers in the wake of the fatal Marco Polo condominium fire was put on hold Tuesday by City Council members. Civil Beat.

Firefighters and condominium owners Tuesday met before a City Council committee for the first time since the July 14 Marco Polo fire left three people dead and discussed potential incentives for, as well as obstacles in the way of, retrofitting aging residential towers with sprinkler systems. Star-Advertiser.

Dozens of owners of Marco Polo apartments, where three people died recently in a fire that swept through the building, have secondary hallway doors with louvers that boost air circulation into their units but also can help a fire spread more quickly, residents and fire experts say. Star-Advertiser.

Two state agencies are now taking action over asbestos at the scene of the massive fire at the Marco Polo building. KHON2.

The state is cutting dozens of positions at the Women, Infants and Children — or WIC — program aimed at helping low-income mothers and children as part of a revamp officials say is needed to deal with a federal funding decline and higher payroll costs. Hawaii News Now.

A sailor’s computer input error on the Pearl Harbor-based destroyer USS John Paul Jones apparently caused an $80 million missile defense test failure off the coast of Kauai on June 21, according to DefenseNews.com. Star-Advertiser.

State wants to change boating, harbor rules. KHON2.

The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council held an unprecedented emergency meeting Monday to approve a letter urging the Trump Administration to maintain 11 marine reserves that are under federal review, including Papahanaumokuakea in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Civil Beat.

Nine-year-old Robbie Bond decided to do something about the threat of budget cuts to public parks — launching Kids Speak for Parks and the website kidsspeakforparks.com as a way for children to speak up and share their experiences at parks and monuments in jeopardy of funding cuts. Star-Advertiser.

An Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee reports money from a Hawaiian princess is helping pay legal fees. Hawaii News Now.

Hurricane Hilary, churning in the Eastern Pacific off Mexico, is expected to crash into a cyclone that's also tracking westward — Hurricane Irwin — sometime in the next 48 hours, the National Hurricane Center said. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu

Contractors began dismantling several homeless encampments near the H-1 freeway Tuesday, part of the state’s effort to keep areas near roadways clear of illegal encampments. Star-Advertiser.

State Steps Up Its Homeless Sweeps Along Highways. Aggressive new effort comes as officials question if moving people along encourages them to use shelters. Civil Beat.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation is leading an effort to remove homeless encampments near major traffic corridors. Hawaii Public Radio.

Additional rescue personnel for the July 4 "floatilla" cost taxpayers $16,000. That led Honolulu's City Council to adopt a resolution calling for regulations against the event Tuesday. Hawaii News Now.

It's only been about two weeks since the Fourth of July flotilla but some city and state officials don't want a repeat, and they are doing what they can to make sure that doesn't happen. KITV.

State and city law enforcement officials say they support a call for stiffer enforcement of regulations at the annual, mostly unorganized Fourth of July event known as Floatilla, but also stressed that they are already throwing all the resources they can at the problem. Star-Advertiser.

The state has fined Aloha Petroleum Ltd. $200,000 for fuel tank violations. Star-Advertiser.

Aloha Petroleum has been fined $200,000 by the Hawaii State Department of Health for failing to notify officials about a "suspected fuel release" within 24 hours of finding it. Pacific Business News.

Some Hawaii students and other volunteers are getting their feet wet in the medical field, while simultaneously easing the workload for some doctors and nurses. It's all part of a new project at Queen's Medical Center geared toward improving patient’s experiences. KITV.

Honolulu ranks among the top 15 best cities to live, despite a low rank for affordability, according to a new WalletHub study. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii Island

Following demolition of the former Hilo Tropical Gardens, Kamehameha Schools officials say they will take a closer look at the management plan for their Keaukaha properties that could help identify future land uses. Tribune-Herald.

What went wrong and how to prevent it from happening again were topmost on the minds of members of the county Water Board on Tuesday as they heard an update on well breakdowns in West Hawaii. West Hawaii Today.

$5,000 arson reward fund remains on table. West Hawaii Today.

There’s a lot of rubbish in the Big Island’s rain forest gulches, and a Paauilo man is on a mission to remove it. Tribune-Herald.

Two native plant species are thriving today in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island. Hawaii Public Radio.

Elson “Bobo” Kanaina Brown, the last member of the legendary band Hilo Hawaiians and son of founder William “Bunny” Brown, died Saturday surrounded by family at his Hilo home after a yearlong battle with cancer. He was 77. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

For five years, two planning guiding documents of Maui County have been at odds when it comes to short-term rental homes. Maui News.

The transition phase of the operational takeover of Maui County public hospitals by Kaiser Permanente subsidiary Maui Health System has ended, and it was a success, said an official with the new management. Maui News.

The transition phase is now complete for the Maui Health System, the Kaiser Permanente subsidiary which took over management of three Maui hospitals (Kula Hospital & Clinic, Lānaʻi Community Hospital and Maui Memorial Medical Center) on July 1st. Maui Now.

Some new enforcement strategies and more participation from Lahaina patrol and other officers contributed to significant increases in citations for seat belt and cellphone violations during the recent Click It or Ticket campaign, police said. Maui News.

The Maui Humane Society announced it has achieved a 92% Live Release Rate for dogs in Fiscal 2017, meaning more than nine out of every ten dogs who entered the shelter were either adopted, transferred to rescue partners for adoption, or returned to their owners. Maui Now.

Every summer, rice coral (montipora capitata) colonies around Maui and in the aquarium’s exhibits spawn shortly after the new moon cycle. Maui News.

Kauai

Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. shared his plan for Kauai’s future Tuesday during the Kauai Chamber of Commerce’s 3rd Annual Mayor’s Luncheon held at the Sheraton Kauai Resort. Garden Island.

More than 50 people attended Monday's public hearing, hosted by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, to comment on proposed changes to boating laws and rules at harbors. Garden Island.

A young pueo, or Hawaiian short-eared owl that tangled with a vehicle in late March has died after being hit by another vehicle two months after it was rehabilitated and released back into the wild. Two more were found dead on Kauai’s roads on the same day, according to a press release from the state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources. Garden Island.

Monday, June 20, 2016

National parks boost Hawaii tourism, Chinese investors coming, coral reef symposium this week, judge allows 20 to participate in Thirty Meter Telescope case, Kaiser curbs Medicaid patients, Kauai mulls smoking ban in cars with kids, Gabbard hasn't embraced Clinton, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands


copyright 2016 all Hawaii News all rights reserved
Crater in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park © 2016 All Hawaii News
 In 2015 visitors spent an estimated $364.5 million in local areas while stopping at National Park Service lands in Hawaii — a total up $24 million from the previous year, the U.S. government said. Star-Advertiser.

A 2015 ban on free travel for public school teachers who organize out-of-state field trips was essentially lifted Friday, after a Circuit Court judge invalidated advice given by the Hawaii State Ethics Commission. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii is only beginning to see a trickle of what will be coming, in terms of Chinese commercial real estate investments, although developers need to do more to attract these types of key investments, an international real estate expert tells Pacific Business News.

Recent Chinese investments in Hawaii real estate total nearly one billion dollars. Hawaii Public Radio.

The International Coral Reef Symposium convenes Monday to try to create a more unified conservation plan for coral reefs. Associated Press.

After the most powerful El Nino on record heated the world’s oceans to never-before-seen levels, huge swaths of once vibrant coral reefs that were teeming with life are now stark white ghost towns disintegrating into the sea. Associated Press.

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii has stopped accepting new Medicaid patients, making it more difficult for those on the government-backed health insurance program that in Hawaii is known as "Quest," to find doctors willing to admit them. Star-Advertiser.

Allegations of wrongdoing by University of Hawaii employees and officials can now be confidentially reported by students, faculty, staff and the public through a whistleblower website and hotline the university has launched. Star-Advertiser.

Almost a year after Hawaii’s Environmental Court made its debut, it received high marks last week at a conference in Honolulu on environmental law. Civil Beat.

A group that sued to stop a Native Hawaiian election is persisting with its lawsuit because it fears another race-based vote will happen. Star-Advertiser.

Here’s the harsh truth about the roughly 900 prisoners released each year in Hawaii: The odds are, more than half of them will end up back in trouble. Civil Beat.

Man’s efforts to find birth parents leads to legislation that eases access to adoption records. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii’s top supporter of Bernie Sanders is not prepared to endorse Hillary Clinton in the presidential election. “I’m not prepared to do that,” Rep. Tulsi Gabbard told CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer Friday when asked if she would back Clinton. Civil Beat.

The yearly “Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation: Summer Nutrition Status Report,” compiled by the Washington, D.C.-based Food Research and Action Center, ranks Hawaii No. 47 in the country for the percentage of students who ate free federal meals last summer in comparison to the school year. Tribune-Herald.

Oahu

An unprecedented and acclaimed Hawaiian feather work show that was years in the making and originally scheduled to appear at Bishop Museum in Honolulu has instead opened in Los Angeles. While the Bay Area show went off as planned, Bishop Museum apparently backed out because of the expense to bring the exhibit to Hawaii and stage it here. Star-Advertiser.

There are more than $20 billion worth of transit oriented developments planned along the rail line from Kapolei to Ala Moana Center.  But experts said that stopping it at Middle Street is going to be devastating for some of these projects.  Hawaii News Now.

One-half of 1 percent of all city general fund collections are set aside for Oahu nonprofit groups each year under a Honolulu City Charter amendment approved by voters in 2012. Star-Advertiser.

Plantation housing in Ewa will be redeveloped by city. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

Riki May Amano is giving everyone a seat at the table as she prepares to start a new contested case hearing for the Thirty Meter Telescope’s land use permit. During her first pre-hearing conference in Hilo on Friday, the hearings officer accepted 14 new parties, essentially everyone who applied and showed up to the cramped meeting room at the State Building on Aupuni Street. Tribune-Herald.

There are now 20 participants in permit proceedings for a giant Mauna Kea telescope. The retired Big Island judge overseeing the contested case hearing on Friday allowed the nonprofit company building the Thirty Meter Telescope to participate. Associated Press.

Attorney arguments recorded inside the cramped pre-hearing conference cut together with moments captured outside the old courthouse, as the TMT contested case proceedings begin in Hilo. Big Island Video News.

For many of the 75 or so community members and real estate agents who grabbed lunch at the Kona Elks Lodge on Friday, it was their first good look at eight mayoral candidates in the same room. West Hawaii Today.

Kekaualua steps down from campaign as DOT investigates. West Hawaii Today.

Maui

About 2,800 displaced workers on Maui received some good news on Friday as Gov. David Ige signed two bills into law that will help them during the transition. Pacific Business News.

About 30 farmers and residents gathered at Honomanū bridge along the Hāna Highway on Saturday in an effort to draw attention to their objection of House Bill 2501, which defines water rights on the island. Maui Now.

Kauai

Bill No. 2629 was drafted in an effort to address the potential harmful health risks to children who are exposed to nicotine in cars. On Wednesday, the Kauai County Council hosted a public hearing on the bill. Garden Island.

The conversation about turning Kauai Humane Society into a no-kill shelter will renew next weekend with a conference hosted by Nathan Winograd, director of the National No Kill Advocacy Center. Garden Island.

Recently, eight North Shore community members applied for a $10 million grant through XQ Super School Project, a national competition founded by Laurene Powell Jobs, widow of Steve Jobs. Garden Island.

Monday, May 23, 2016

National Park fees increase, Hawaii GOP convention exposes schism over Trump, Honolulu charter amendment could erase neighborhood boards, state and federal lawmakers fight homelessness, Kauai's Rapozo seeks 7th term, unemployment rate drops, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

copyright 2016 All Hawaii News
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park lava glow © 2016 All Hawaii News
Beginning June 1, daily entrance fees at all national parks in Hawaii, including Haleakala National Park and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, will increase. Star-Advertiser.

Flush with an extra $3 million it never requested to address island homelessness, Gov. David Ige’s administration is being pressured to better coordinate the state’s homeless efforts as impatient legislators await progress. Star-Advertiser.

The U.S. Senate has approved an appropriations bill that includes “additional money for homelessness and affordable housing programs which will help Hawaii, Sen. Brian Schatz said in a statement Friday. Civil Beat.

Officials say a staff shortage in the state’s Child Welfare Services agency has resulted in social workers juggling twice as many as cases of child abuse and neglect as they should. Associated Press.

A large banner reading “Defeat Hillary, Vote Trump!” expressed the sentiments of many of the several hundred people who attended Hawaii’s Republican state convention Saturday at the Filipino Community Center’s Casamina Flores Ballroom in Waipahu. But not every local Republican backs the New York businessman-turned-politician, and that led to turmoil when state Rep. Beth Fukumoto Chang took the stage. Civil Beat.

Hawaii lawmakers were reluctant again this year to strengthen the state ethics code or to tighten the rules lobbyists must follow. The Hawaii State Ethics Commission tracked more than 16 bills related to ethics and lobbying this past legislative session, which ended May 5. Each and every one died, many without so much as a public hearing. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.2 percent, seasonally adjusted, in April, from 3.8 percent during the same month last year, as the state’s labor force grew to nearly 690,000, according to the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. Pacific Business News.

The most ethnically diverse state in the country, Hawaii also has the highest proportion of non-English speakers. Tribune-Herald.

President Barack Obama on Friday joined the chorus of public officials honoring Hawaii Congressman Mark Takai, who announced Thursday he will not seek re-election but instead focus on his battle with cancer. Civil Beat.

The national retail chain Sports Authority has thanked all its loyalty members and said that “it is with great sadness” that it’s closing the program on Wednesday, May 25. KHON2.

Oahu

The Honolulu Charter Commission might ask Oahu voters to consider eliminating neighborhood boards, using the money saved to fund other means of increasing civic participation. Star-Advertiser.

About a month after the Attorney General's office's charities division opened a civil investigation into questionable spending by the Bishop Museum's former CEO, Hawaii  News Now has learned that the AG's office has launched a separate criminal probe. Multiple sources tell us that the museum is cooperating with the criminal investigation and has handed over a number of documents relating to its former president Blair Collis' use of his museum credit card.

Even though the city and state have been teaming up to clear out the persistent Kakaako homeless encampment, one member of the board that oversees the waterfront parks says the population is growing to dangerous levels. Star-Advertiser.

Two lesbians who were arrested by a Honolulu police officer after he saw them hugging and kissing in a North Shore grocery store were recently awarded $80,000 to resolve a lawsuit they filed last October. Civil Beat.

Plans to redevelop a key section of Haleiwa town won approval from the City Council Zoning and Planning Committee on Thursday, despite opposition from the North Shore Outdoor Circle and others worried it might harm an adjacent Hawaiian fishpond. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii

The telescopes atop Mauna Kea help support a local science and technology industry. But could they also attract more manufacturing jobs? A feasibility study by Hawaii’s High Technology Development Corporation will try to find out. Tribune-Herald.

Not all Native Hawaiians oppose construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope atop Mauna Kea, a group of community leaders said Friday. The group has formed the nonprofit Perpetuating Unique Educational Opportunities Inc. — known by its acronym PUEO, for the endemic owl of Hawaiian myth and legend — and has filed a motion to intervene in the contested case currently underway. West Hawaii Today.

Kalani Flores, an appellant in the Thirty Meter Telescope court case, made his case in opposition to new rules that will regulate cultural practices on Mauna Kea. Big Island Video News.

For several years, a small office in the state’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism has been pursuing a spaceport certification for Kona International Airport, which would make it one of the few hubs for proposed commercial flights into suborbit. Tribune-Herald.

Two firefighters who claim they were stripped of their badges by Fire Chief Darren Rosario for publicly criticizing him are suing the chief and the county. Tribune-Herald.

Hawaii Island farmers in line for permits to begin experimental industrial hemp production say the crop could be a major boon for agriculture. West Hawaii Today.

Sayonara, Japanese? Despite dramatic decrease of speakers in Hawaii, some vow to keep it alive. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Hawaii’s attorney general has asked a federal appeals court to lift or modify an injunction halting the transfer of three state-owned hospitals in Maui County to private control under Kaiser Permanente, saying the time frame does not allow the state to reverse course and run the facilities as public hospitals. Pacific Business News.

Hawaii's attorney general is asking the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to lift or change an order issued Tuesday that suspended work to transfer Maui County's three public hospitals from the state to Maui Health Systems, a subsidiary of Kaiser Foundation Hospitals. Maui News.

The Maui County Council passed the fiscal year 2017 budget on first reading Friday, with changes that included eliminating biodiesel fuel taxes and reappropriating housing funds originally targeted for photovoltaic systems. Maui News.

Hawaiian Homes broke ground to celebrate the beginning of construction for the first phase of the Keokea-Waiohuli subdivision in Kula on Thursday. The subdivision will be the future home for 46 Hawaiian Home Lands beneficiaries and their families. Hawaii News Now.

"The Last Harvest" is a series chronicling the various aspects of Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co.'s final harvest as it shuts down at the end of the year after a 145-year run. The shutdown of HC&S represents the end of sugar in Hawaii. The installments will run periodically throughout the year. Maui News.

Kauai

Keeping the administration in check, maintaining the budget and fighting for the safety of hard-working families is what Mel Rapozo wants do to if elected to a new term on the Kauai County Council. Garden Island.

Over the decades, Mother Nature has been pretty tenacious about breaking down the three bridges that cross Wainiha Stream on Kuhio Highway. Once again, there’s talk about replacing them. Garden Island.

Construction of a beachfront timeshare slated to be built on the Eastside is expected to begin in the fall.Coconut Beach Resort, owned by Symmetry Property Development and SPD II Makaiwa Development Resort Development LLC, will begin construction of its 330-unit resort in the Coconut Plantation Resort Area in Kapaa in September. Garden Island.

Dozens of people waved signs along Kuhio Highway in Kapaa Saturday, supporting organic farming and condemning genetically engineered food. The rally was part of the global March Against Monsanto event. Garden Island.