Chic Eco — Hawaii Recycling Glitch

RecycleLogoby Delia Montgomery

I’m sooo into recycling — especially with bottles! So much that I often share artistic creations.

My bottle-writing purpose is to encourage others to do the same. And because of my bottle-art passion, I pay attention to how our municipal public works recycles. Not just bottles, but all recyclables.

This story is actually a query derived from my attempt to redeem beer bottles and old cans mid July. Soon after, I saw the Hawaii Tribune Herald headlines dated July 23rd. The featured front-page headline was Big Island Recycling Proceeds Trimmed.

My bottle collection story began 2009. Not ready to build artsy walls or sculptures admired, I decided to simply place beer bottles upside down around my trees as a border. I preferred green and brown glass, and liked the way the labels would wear off so the colors would shine. Being mostly banana trees, moving them around was necessary. Sometimes I would end up with extra bottles and occasionally redeem them for pocket money. By 2011 my bottle stash was mounting and so I visited the Pahoa recycling center more frequently. No problem cashing in a mix of new and old bottles with worn labels. I did this until mid July 2013. Read more

HAWAII BULLETIN — Carjacking Suspect Located

Hawai?i Island police have located Jeremy Todd Rios, who was wanted in connection with a reported carjacking.

At 6:30 p.m. Tuesday (July 30), Rios walked out of a pasture area onto Mauna Kea Access Road, where a police officer making checks in the area took him into custody.

Rios was arrested and was being taken to the Hilo Police cellblock, where he will be held while detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section continue the investigation.

The Mauna Kea Access Road has been reopened to traffic. The Police Department thanks the public for its patience while the road was closed during the search.

HAWAII BULLETIN — Power Restored For Most HELCO Customers

Hawaii Electric Light Company has announced that power has been restored to most customers on Hawaii Island.


The company continues to restore power to a few customers in various areas on the east side of the island. If you are experiencing a power outage and have not contacted the company, please call the Trouble Desk at 969-6666 for assistance.


For your safety, do not touch fallen or low hanging power lines or anything they may be in contact with. A seemingly harmless wire may still be energized. Stay clear of puddles where downed lines may have landed. To report a downed power line, please call the Trouble Desk.


Hawaii Electric Light sincerely thanks customers for their patience and understanding.


HAWAII BULLETIN — HELCO Responding To Power Outages

Hawaii Electric Light Company has announced that fallen trees caused by gusty winds from Tropical Storm Flossie are causing power outages throughout the lower Puna area. At this time, approximately 5,000 customers are without power.


The affected areas include 2,800 customers from Volcano to Glenwood; 2,200 customers from Kalapana to Nanawale; and 1,300 in Panaewa. Service has been restored to the Panaewa Mountain View, and Kurtistown areas.


“The safety of our employees and customers is our top priority,” said Hawaii Electric Light Company president Jay Ignacio. “We are prepared to restore service as quickly and safely as possible.”


Power interruptions and voltage disturbances are possible as long as the stormy conditions persist. Do not touch fallen or low hanging power lines or anything they may be in contact with. A seemingly harmless wire may still be energized. Stay clear of puddles where downed lines may have landed.


Customers may call 969-6666 to report power outages and downed power lines.


Hawaii Electric Light sincerely thanks customers for their patience and understanding.

HAWAII BULLETIN — Council Committee Meetings Delayed Due To ‘Flossie’

Hawaii County Council committee meetings scheduled for Tuesday will be rescheduled to a future date due to Tropical Storm Flossie, according to Council Chairman J Yoshimoto. Notices will be posted, he said.

“And all county council offices are closed tomorrow (Monday, July 29),” Yoshimoto added. “We want to make sure everyone is safe and with their families.”

HAWAII BULLETIN — Governor Signs Emergency Proclamation In Anticipation Of Flossie



HONOLULU – Gov. Neil Abercrombie today signed an Emergency Proclamation in preparation of Tropical Storm (TS) Flossie. The proclamation provides certain authorities that will allow the state to more effectively prepare for the arrival of TS Flossie, expected to make landfall Monday morning on the eastern end of Hawaii Island. Local, state and federal governmental agencies and non-profit partners are coordinating and working together to minimize the impact of the projected high wind, waves and torrential rain.

“All parts of our emergency response system for the entire state are working together,” Gov. Abercrombie said. “The purpose of signing this proclamation is to ensure that state agencies have full powers necessary to best protect and serve the people of Hawaii.”

The emergency proclamation covers such items as access to the major disaster fund to cover staff overtime and other expenses, allowing emergency procurement of needed supplies and resources, as well as activation of the National Guard, if needed.


# # #

For more information, contact:
Louise Kim McCoy, Director of Communications / Press Secretary, (808) 586-0012

Letters — Regarding A Theft From A Musician At Hapuna Beach Park

A fellow musician got his trumpets jacked at Hapuna Beach Park.
Please call (310) 774-11033 if you have any info leading to the recovery of his Instruments. They are his life!!!!
-Trumpet in black leather Torpedo Bag hard case:
-B-flat 1946 Martin Committee, raw brass
Serial Number: 154717
-Bach 229 C-trumpet with MC1 Malone pipe, gold-plated
Serial Number: CL35836
-Schilke P54 piccolo trumpet, gold-plated two Bob Malone leadpipes, two Kenneth W Larson leadpipes
Serial Number: 12864
-4 mouthpieces, including Reeves custom with 1.5 Bach screwtop, GR C**, Bach 7EW cornet mouthpiece, Bach 1.5C
bunch of mutes
-2008 MacBook Pro, 15″ silver in black canvas briefcase

Lito Arkangel

Letters — To The Mayor, Regarding The Stalled Alternative Building Code

Dear Mayor Billy Kenoi:

The Hawaii Sustainable Community Alliance requests that you give your support to the introduction of ALTERNATIVE BUILDING CODE LEGISLATION that has been drafted by Councilman Zendo Kern and stalled by your Department of Public Works.

Our Alliance (see represents 32 local organizations and over 600 members statewide. We wrote and introduced the alternative building code resolution that was unanimously adopted by the County Council in October 2011. This resolution called upon the DPW to “establish an alternative building code.”

Our members are significant stakeholders in this process and have been patiently waiting for some action to occur since this resolution. As a result of our extensive research on alternative building codes used in other U.S. Counties we wrote and submitted a draft to DPW in March 2012.  Despite meetings and requests for more meetings the process was totally stalled by DPW.

During the 2012 election many local residents actively campaigned in support of Council Member Zendo Kern because his primary platform was for an alternative building code. Read more

Letters — About the Anti-GMO bill

Dear Editor,

Bill 79, the anti-GMO bill, has brought out a lot of concern and a lot of anxiety.

I say that we need to slow down. It would be premature to rush into a decision on this bill without taking the time to hear everybody’s input and address all the issues on the table.

Before we make big decisions – any of which could have unintended consequences – we should set up some sort of task force to look at the bigger picture of Hawai‘i’s self-sufficiency, and how we are going to achieve that.

How are we going to get there, all of us together? We need to end up at a place where we aloha each other, and take care of everybody.

Let’s not rush to pass this bill without fully understanding the bigger picture.

Richard Ha

Owner, Hamakua Springs Country Farms

Guest Report — Regarding The Controversial Confirmation of Bobby Jean Leithead Todd

By Cheryl King

(Disclaimer:  The author of this article testified against this confirmation.)

The County Council voted on July 10 to confirm Bobby Jean Leithead Todd as the Director of Environmental Management.   Voting no were Councilmembers Brenda Ford (District.6), Karen Eoff (District 8), and Margaret Wille (District 9.)

This confirmation comes in spite of the fact that a 2010 Charter Amendment approved by an overwhelming majority of the voters requires the Director to have had a minimum of five years of administrative experience in a related field and “an engineering degree or a degree in a related field.”

Many of the testifiers did not believe that her previous County of Hawaii service as Deputy Corporation Counsel, Councilmember, Director of Planning, and Director of Environmental management (2 yrs.) gave her that “five years of administrative experience in a related field.”

In her own defense, Leithead Todd related to the Council before their discussion that when she was confirmed as Director of Environmental Management (D.E.M.) in 2007, the charter language mandated “5 years experience in a related field” and that her experience had been as a Deputy Corporation Counsel.  She commented “you might not agree that law experience is a related field, but I was confirmed, including by Ms. Ford, to that position.  If in 2007 my experience as county attorney was considered to be related, then it is still a related field.”

Council Member Ford later responded that she was a first term inexperienced council member and that something had intervened since then -a charter amendment requiring a degree as an “engineer or a degree in a related field.”    She said she took a common sense approach to what that meant-i.e. that the words “related field” referred back to engineering.

Both the Mayor and the Council Members in favor of this confirmation tried to make the case that a “law degree” was a “related degree” in spite of the comments of Council Woman Karen Eoff, who had served as the Charter Commission’s Secretary, “I do respect that you are the mayor’s choice and I believe you have very high qualifications, experience and skills that would be advantageous to the Department, but I believe I was elected to uphold the laws and to honor what I believe was the intent of the county voters when they adopted the charter language.  Had I not been the charter secretary, I might have been able to see it differently.    But, I read what went down in the charter commission — it says you need an engineering degree or one in related field.  To me that is pretty clear.    I am having a struggle and I don’t feel a law degree meets the charter requirement.”

Council Member Margaret Wille, who had attended most of the Charter Commission meetings, stated that the Commission had discussed whether or not to include an engineering degree as a requirement and that it was left in at the insistence of the then Director of Environmental Management, Lono Tyson, himself a professional engineer, who supported the Charter Amendment and felt it was necessary for the Director to have a higher level of technical knowledge.

Wille said that when a commissioner queried Tyson as to what a “related” field would be, he replied “solid waste, wastewater, recycling” and then he brings up “anything ranging from environmental science to even geology.”

Lincoln Ashida, Corporation Counsel, was quizzed by counsel members on his interpretation of the wording on the Charter Amendment and went through the process he used to render his written communication to the council on whether or not Leithead Todd was qualified to take the job.  His determination was that it was up to the council to decide.


When the Council Members finished the second discussion regarding the confirmation, Chair Jay Yoshimoto reminded them that Council rules only allow for two rounds of discussion.  When Chair Yoshimoto called on Margaret Wille to finish some comments she had started to make earlier, Zendo Kern objected, saying that the Council rules should be followed.  Read more

Guest Column — Community Organizing: Use Facts, not Fear-Mongering

bob_lindsey_headshotBy Robert  K. Lindsey Jr.

When President Obama first announced his candidacy for President of the United States, there was some foolish mocking from the sidelines of his background as a “community organizer.”   Some, apparently bewildered, asked: “What is that?”

I think, we the community, here on Hawaii island, need to ask ourselves if we know what community organizing means to us, to our children and to our future.

It is too easy to circulate rumors and half information. It is too easy to speculate about things yet unknown –and in the process whip up needless fear and anxiety.

And it is too easy to wave protest signs and say the sky is falling and yell, Not In My Backyard (NIMBY).

Any community organizer worth her salt knows you start by listening.

Any community organizer worth her salt knows you learn from past mistakes.

Any community organizer who puts the good of the community first, knows that what hurts one person hurts us all.

That is what drove the kupuna to the defense of our culture and our people when geothermal was first proposed. Mililani Trask, principal of Indigenous Consultants LLC, was the attorney representing the Kupuna Wahine of Ka Lahui Hawai‘i in the Wao Kele O Puna debacle. She now advises Innovations Development Group as they lead the effort to give Native Hawaiians a voice in how their geothermal assets are developed in a responsible, sustainable, community-centered way.

The dissenters say, “Why do geothermal at all?”

And the answer to that question is: we cannot afford not to. We cannot leave our children and grandchildren to the mercies of foreign oil companies. We depend on tankers to bring oil to our islands so we can generate electricity. We depend on them more than any other state in the nation. Out here in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, we pay more than anyone else in the nation for our electricity. Read more