• 18 Feb 2015 /  Uncategorized

    BIC FEBRUARY 2015Pick up Big Island Chronicle’s February 2015 print edition at the following locations:

    All KTA Super Stores in Hilo
    Island Naturals in Hilo & Pahoa
    Abundant Life Health Food Store
    Mo’oheau Bus Terminal
    KapohoKine Adventures
    Palace Theater
    Keaukaha Market
    UH Hilo Bookstore
    Foodland in Kea’au
    Kea’au Natural Foods
    Lemongrass Restaurant in Kea’au
    Orchidland True Value
    Longs Drugs in Pahoa
    7-Eleven in Pahoa
    Paul’s Repair (both Pahoa stores)
    Black Rock Cafe 
    Sirius Coffee
    Jeff Hunt Surfboards
    Bookbuyers in Pahoa 
    Pahoa Home Video
    Boogie Woogie Pizza
    Pahoa Museum 
    La Hiki Ola kava bar
    Kaleo’s
    Tin Shack Bakery

     

  • 17 Feb 2015 /  BULLETINS, Crime, Missing People, news
    http://s3.amazonaws.com/nixle/uploads/pub_media/user5252-1424225348-media1

    Shaniya Das-Lauro

    Police are seeking help in locating a missing Pepe`ekeo teenager.

    Shaniya Das-Lauro was last seen in Hilo on January 10. She is described as Hawaiian, 5-foot-2, 105 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.  Police ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

    Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300. Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

    Tags: ,

  • 17 Feb 2015 /  BULLETINS, Closures, news

    Hawaii Electric Company reported at 11 a.m. today that it had restored power to about 800 more customers, and that it was working on restoring power to  approximately 300 remaining households in  Nanawale, Leilani Estates, Ainaloa and “a few pocket outages in the Puna area.”  It expects to have power restored to all households “by tomorrow.”

    A bulletin from Hawaii County Civil Defense this morning advised that some lower Puna a residents could expect continued outages “through this week” because of extensive damage caused by what it termed “last week’s wind event. ” The Pohoiki Road will be closed to local traffic only to allow for HELCO and other utility crews to work to restore lines and poles. Motorists are advised to exercise caution in the area and to use alternate routes if possible,”  it announced.

     

     

    Tags: , , , ,

  • 17 Feb 2015 /  Public Service Announcement

    From the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration:

    NOAA’s Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve, part of Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, is seeking applicants for two seats on its advisory council.  The council ensures public participation in reserve management and provides advice and recommendations to the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries regarding the reserve.

    “Community representatives on our advisory council are an extremely important part of our team,” said David Swatland, acting superintendent for Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument.  “Their input is an integral part of managing this special place.”

    The reserve is accepting applications for the following seats: Native Hawaiian elder (alternate) and Native Hawaiian (alternate).

    Candidates are selected based on their expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying, community and professional affiliations, and views regarding the protection and management of marine resources. Applicants who are chosen as members or alternates should expect to serve a two-year term or until a different advisory body is created pursuant to Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument’s management plan.

    The advisory council consists of 15 primary and alternate members representing a variety of public interest groups, including conservation, education, research, and ocean-related commercial and recreational activities, as well as the Native Hawaiian community. It also includes 10 governmental seats representing: Department of Defense, Department of the Interior, Department of State, Marine Mammal Commission, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Science Foundation, U.S. Coast Guard, Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument and Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.

    Applications are due March 31. To receive an application kit, or for further information, please contact Hoku Johnson, acting deputy superintendent, via email at hoku.johnson@noaa.gov; by phone at ; or by mail at Hoku Johnson, NOAA Inouye Regional Center, NOS/ONMS/PMNM 1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176, Honolulu HI 96818. Application kits can also be downloaded at: http://www.papahanaumokuakea.gov/council/.

    Tags: , ,

  • 16 Feb 2015 /  Uncategorized

    Hawai Electric Light Company’s evening Web site report claims that about 1,100 households were still without power in Ainaloa, Hawaiian Beaches, Nanawale, Leilani Estates, Lanipuna, and Hawaiian Acres as of 4 p.m. today. “Due to extensive damage caused by fallen trees, electric service for customers in Nanawale, Leilani Estates, and Lanipuna is expected to be restored by Wednesday,”  the release noted. It also stated that crews today restored power to  approximately 500 customers in portions of Hawaiian Paradise Park, Orchidland, Hawaiian Beaches, Leilani Estates, Lanipuna, and Hawaiian Acres.

    The release gave no explanation as to why those figures didn’t jive with yesterday’s, when the company reported that about 2,900 customers were still without power.  The Chronicle has sent HELCO a  query about what happened to the other 1,300 households. We’ll let you know what they said if they reply.

     

     

  • 15 Feb 2015 /  BULLETINS, Energy, news

    As of  4 p.m. today, approximately 2,900 island residents, mostly  Puna and Ka’u,  remained without power, according to HELCO–and some can expect to remain without electricity for days.

    The utility said it had restored power to 1,100 customers from North Kohala to Lower Puna since yesterday’s high winds, but some residents remained without power in in portions of Leilani Estates, Nanawale, Lanipuna, Hawaiian Paradise Park, Orchidland, Ainaloa, Hawaiian Beaches, Nanawale, Tangerine Acres, Leilani Estates, Fern Forest, Fern Acres, Hawaiian Acres, Eden Roc, Wood Valley, South Point, and Ahualoa.

    “Due to extensive damage, customers in Hawaiian Beaches, Hawaiian Shores, Nanawale, Leilani Estates, and Lanipuna are advised to prepare for the possibility of extended outages through this week,” stated a message on the company’s Web site this evening.

    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • 15 Feb 2015 /  letters

    Dear Editor,

    I was lucky in I983 to see Pu’u O’o fountaining while visiting my folks in Leilani Estates.  Residents and tourists alike witnessed as Pele covered Kamoamoa, Waha’ula, Royal Gardens, Queen’s Bath and Kalapana.  During this volatile and spectacular time in Pele’s history, Harry Kim was Civil Defense, a calm cool breeze to the people who were losing their homes to the hot lava. Residents were included every step of the way, and Mr. Kim probably spent more time in Kalapana then at home.

    In contrast, Act 111 establishes an indefinite emergency state in Puna to hopefully receive federal money to help pay for Big Island lava woes.  Terrified residents start relocating immediately after attending a public meeting with fantasy HVO computer generated images of lava projections maps with blue flames covering Hawaiian Beaches, Ainaloa and Paradise Park.  Reputable mags like Newsweek had the lava crossing the highway and burning homes.  TV and Civil Defense screamed about dangerous lava, while politicians, newsmen, and comedians-turned-bully-advisors toured it.  To “protect” the rights and privacy of a few and “prevent” injuries to the foolish, Pahoa was split apart creating financial hardships to businesses, pedestrians, bus riders, as well as a traffic and logistical nightmare for Puna. This community has and is still is paying a very high price.

    Stepping back, I am fully aware that potentially affected infrastructure, commercial districts, schools and housing density is much greater than in Kalapana days.   I am also aware that our Hawaii lawmakers and planners approved those homes, schools and shopping centers, some along lines of steepest descent (blue lines).  Thirdly, Kilauea is an active volcano, which has continually flowed over our Puna landscape for eons.

    So, back to the subject, overnight hundreds of school children were forcibly relocated, and how many more households moved due to cancellation of Section 8 housing (shades of genocide?).  Pahoa’s Community Center was taken away from the community and appropriated to Civil Defense.  Our seniors were kicked out of their center and that was given back to the Fire Department.  The new skate park was barricaded and the center of quaint old Pahoa was and still is being used as our trash dump.

    Lava changed direction, and although no formal evacuation was ever ordered, for some strange reason, on the same day, in graceful unison, all corporate businesses (Malama Market, Ace Hardware, Lex Brodies, Malama Gas Station, Subway and Longs Drugs) packed their bags and left town.  This was while the flow was still over a half-mile away.

    Lava changed direction again, but now months of no large grocery, pharmacy, hardware, tire repair, and miles and hours lost waiting with the rest of lower Puna in the gridlock that may not have happened if the powers in charge had a more relaxed and steady approach, kind of like Pele.  Oh, and so you know, the County is charging Puna HeleOn bus riders an extra $1 per bag for groceries they need to buy in Keaau or Hilo and carry home to Pahoa since the market closed.

    How much money do Hawaii keiki owe for this current lava emergency? How are we financing this? How will we get back the 22.2 million dollars taken from our Pahoa park fund?  Is the geothermal relocation money still in the bank (since mayor stopped relocation)?  Has government poached monies meant for other Puna projects?   All of this and Pele has only taken one home.   We need some answers right away!

    Sara Steiner

    Tags: , , , , ,

  • 15 Feb 2015 /  Uncategorized

    By Norma Jean Ream   

    Early March is the time when the energy of voice and action are gaining momentum for people, collective groups that share something, and the general collective of the 99% in the world.

    This is not a fluffy comfortable time of not noticing what is going on. This is a time of awakening power of the masses to make a point and to insist on pushing back against the take-over of all natural resources. I am still surprised and dismayed when I speak to someone that doesn’t have a clue about the TPP; Trans-Pacific-Partnership. That is just what the designers of this plan depend on: general ignorance.

    Through January and February the order of Congressional business has been pushed along by the agendas of those who have much to gain from a drowsy, uninterested public. Money is flowing in DC and decisions are being made that are going to shift reality in a major way before 2017.

    Looking around the planet, other countries are leading the way for upsetting the intentions of the 1%. Greece has a plan to change their economic reality in the immediate future by stopping the cycle of debt and bailouts. Spain and Hong Kong are seeing massive demonstrations where some of the largest groups in history are showing up to make a statement to their governments. Read the rest of this entry »

  • 15 Feb 2015 /  Uncategorized

    By Sofia Wilt

    Imagine that instead of the variety of foods that we have access to, humans were not only afforded meal replacement bars that touted being nutritionally complete.  No more fresh, raw or interestingly prepared foods, just the same bar day after day.

    We’d miss out on different tastes and textures, as well as various antioxidants, phytonutrients, enzymes, fats, vitamins and minerals that optimize health and ward off disease.  In truth, that’s basically what we’ve done to the diet of our canine companions.

    While most commercial dog food is “nutritionally complete,” it’s a far cry from an optimal diet and often contains questionable ingredients.  In modern times, dogs are experiencing an increase in disease like their human counterparts — things like cancer, arthritis, and diabetes due to poor quality food and lack of exercise are increasingly common.  Over the past few decades, there have been several pet food recalls because of tainted or poor quality ingredients that have injured or killed thousands of pets, including high-end brands sold at veterinary offices.  Ingredients that make up the bulk of the food, things like corn and soy are both GMO, doused in pesticides, and have nothing to do with your dogs’ ancestral diet.

    Whatever meat used is poor quality, unfit for human consumption, usually is some sort of “meal” or “by-product”, followed by synthetic supplemental vitamins and minerals, chemical food colorings, and is finished off with preservatives so it can be shelf stable for months on end.  Read the rest of this entry »

  • 14 Feb 2015 /  BULLETINS, Energy, news

    High winds have caused numerous power outages today–and as of 5:30, about 5,000 were still without Power, according to the HELCO Web site.

    The  utility reported that “an estimated 5,000 customers are without power in portions of Hawaiian Paradise Park, Orchidland, Ainaloa, Hawaiian Beaches, Hawaiian Shores, Kapoho, Nanawale, Leilani Estates, Fern Forest, Fern Acres, Hawaiian Acres, Eden Roc, Aloha Estates, Volcano Village, Hawi, Wood Valley, Hilo, and Waimea.” It advised customers in the Lower Puna subdivisions of Hawaiian Beaches, Hawaiian Shores, Kapoho, Nanawale, and Leilani Estates  to “prepare for extended outages which could last into next week and in some areas, much longer.”

    “In some areas, strong winds toppled trees and caused extensive damage to power lines and utility poles,” said the company’s press release. “Ongoing windy conditions make it unsafe for tree trimmers to clear roadways and for crews to conduct assessments and make repairs.”

    The company said custome’s trying to report outages “may experience a longer wait time before speaking with a representative.” Some customers who dialed the company’s infamous “number of the beast”–it’s 969-6666 customer service line– were met with busy signals several times before they got through to the company’s call waiting message.  One Volcano customer who did finally connect with a service representative said he was told that the company’s line crews were “swamped.”

    Tags: , ,

  • For the second time in a week, problems with the phone system in West Hawaii may be compromising residents abilities to use the emergency 911 phone number

    According to the  Hawaii Police Department, “Due to issues with phone services in West Hawaii, 911 and calls to the Police may be affected. It is requested that those needing police assistance who are having trouble making phone contact go to the nearest police station.”

     

    Tags: , ,

  • 14 Feb 2015 /  environment, health and wellness, news

    From the United States Geological Survey:

    ISLAND OF HAWAI`I, Hawaii—A new study to examine how people who live downwind of Kilauea Volcano cope with volcanic gas emissions, or vog, is currently underway. Led by Dr. Claire Horwell, Director of the International Volcanic Health Hazard Network and a researcher at Durham University in the United Kingdom, the study is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. It will reach across multiple agencies, organizations, and communities in the State of Hawaii to help ensure that official advice about living with vog incorporates a wide range of experiences and knowledge.

    Vog, the pollution formed from acidic gases and particles released by active volcanoes, is composed primarily of sulfur dioxide gas and its oxidation products, such as sulfate aerosol. Sulfur dioxide from Kilauea, now in its 33rd year of nearly continuous eruption, results in vog that continues to challenge communities, agriculture and infrastructure on the Island of Hawai`i, as well as across the State.

    Communities downwind from K?lauea’s active vents frequently experience vog as a visible haze or as a sulfurous smell or taste. People exposed to vog report a variety of symptoms, such as coughing, wheezing, sore throats, and headaches. The Hawaii State Department of Health and the American Lung Association offer advice on vog protection measures, such as staying indoors and limiting physical activity when vog levels are high.

    According to Dr. Horwell, she is investigating how Hawai?i communities use this advice and if they have developed their own strategies for protecting themselves from vog. “We’re working with State and county agencies with the end goal of providing consistent online advice, an informative pamphlet on vog exposure and protection, and updated guidance on how to access resources about vog,” she said.

    Knowledge gained from the study in Hawaii, which has been funded by the British Council under the Research Links initiative, will also be relevant internationally, not only in volcanically active regions but also farther afield, as volcanic gases can travel downwind for many miles. For example, UK government agencies can draw on the Hawaii study as they prepare for the potential effects of future Icelandic eruptions.

    Outcomes of the vog study will eventually be available online through the International Volcanic Health Hazard Network. IVHHN serves as a clearing house for information on the health impacts of volcanic eruptions and provides detailed information on volcanic gas and particle impacts.

    Dr. Horwell is currently meeting with community and agency focus groups on the Island of Hawai`i and, in the coming weeks, will conduct surveys in a number of communities regularly affected by vog, including Volcano, P?hala, Ocean View and South Kona.

    Hawai`i residents are encouraged to record how they cope with vog on the ‘Vog Talk’ Facebook page established by Dr. Horwell.

    Information on when and where community surveys will be conducted between now and the end of March is available on the ‘Vog Talk’ Facebook page or by calling .

    For more information about Kilauea Volcano’s ongoing eruptions, please visit the USGS HVO website. Answers to “Frequently Asked Questions about SO2 and Vog” are also available online.

    Tags: , , ,

  • SB1374. Related to Land Exchange.  Would appropriate $500,000 from the Legacy Land Fund and the Land Conservation Fund to study the possibility of exchanging state Land for Dole Co. farmland on O’ahu.  Would appropriate an as-yet-to-be-determined amount from the Land Conservation Fund to study the possibility of exchanging state land for Dole land in order to build a new prison on O’ahu.Alert: Scheduled for joint committee hearing hearing today.

    SB 499. Requires major capital improvement projects of the State or a county involving an infrastructure improvement project or construction project to include in the environmental assessments and environmental impact statements an analysis of the environmental impact of projected sea level rise or fall over the anticipated lifespan of the project. Alert: Scheduled for joint committee hearing hearing today.

    To follow and/or testify, click on the links above.

    Tags: , , ,

  • From the County of Hawaii Dept. of Environmental Management:

    Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection events will occur between 8:30 a.m. and
    3:30 p.m., as follows:

    Saturday, March 7, 2015 at the Waimea Recycling and Transfer Station.
    Sunday, March 8, 2015 at the Pahoa Recycling and Transfer Station.
    These events are for household generated and self-hauled waste only. Business,
    government agency or farm wastes are not allowed. NO electronic waste will be
    accepted.
    The County of Hawai‘i Department of Environmental Management holds these regular
    collection events so households can conveniently dispose of acceptable HHW in a
    manner that protects both public health and the environment. Some types of
    acceptable HHW are automotive fluids, used batteries, fluorescent lights and pesticides.
    Latex paint will only be accepted at the Waimea event. For a more complete list of
    acceptable or unacceptable HHW, please visit our website www.hawaiizerowaste.org.
    The Web site includes other useful information on solid waste diversion and recycling.
    If you are unable to attend the events described above, the next scheduled HHW
    Collection Events will be on June 6, 2015 in Hilo and June 13, 2015 in Kailua-Kona
    (Kealakehe).
    Please direct your comments or questions regarding these HHW Collection Events to
    Chris Chin-Chance, Recycling Specialist with the Department of Environmental
    Management at 961-8554 or email to  recycle3@co.hawaii.hi.us. Mahalo for your k?kua.

  • Aloha, everyone.  Believe it or not, some folks are still trying to eliminate the Land Use Commission.  Let’s stop them!   Please submit testimony opposing HB 828, Relating to Land Use, which guts the LUC and eliminates its fair, deliberative process for most land use classification boundary amendments.  This bill has serious implications, especially for agricultural and conservation land, public trust resources, traditional and customary practices, and quality of life.  The hearing is this Friday.  Please share this Kokua Alert with others.  Mahalo nui loa.

    Description:  Upon approval by county land use decision-making authority, and with concurrence from Land Use Commission, requires boundary amendments reflected in certain plans to be adopted in accordance with such approved plans.  Prioritizes funding for public infrastructure in areas of planned growth.

    Hearing:  House Committee on Water and Land, Chair Ryan Yamane, Vice Chair Ty Cullen
    Friday, February 13, 2015, 10 am Room 325

    Link to hearing notice:  http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/measure_indiv.aspx?billtype=HB&billnumber=828&year=2015
    Link to bill: http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/session2015/bills/HB828_.HTM
    Link to submit testimony:  http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/submittestimony.aspx

    Talking Points:

    Chair Yamane, Vice Chair Cullen, and Members of the Committee.

    I oppose HB 828 because it is not in the public’s best interest to politicize the Land Use Commission’s process for amending state land use classification boundaries.

    HB 828 requires the LUC to approve any district boundary amendment that is approved by a county council in any county general plan, development plan, or community plan.

    HB 828 will gut the LUC, making it a rubber-stamp body for narrow county and private interests.

    Developers cannot contribute money to Land Use Commissioners, but developers can – and do – contribute regularly to county council members, who would have authority over many boundary amendments if HB 828 passes.

    HB 828 could result in the immediate, rapid urbanization of thousands of acres of conservation and agricultural land across the state because there are large tracts of land already approved for urbanization in plans that have not been approved by the LUC.

    HB 828 would interfere with the LUC’s affirmative duty to protect constitutionally recognized Native Hawaiian traditional and customary rights and public trust resources.

    Many special places have been protected by the independent LUC and its fair process, including La‘au Point on west Moloka‘i, ‘O‘oma near Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park, Pohue Bay on the Big Island, and Keopuka next to Kealakekua Bay to name a few.

    HB 828 will eliminate the deliberative, quasi-judicial process – sometimes referred to as contested case hearings – for many important boundary amendments that would come before the LUC.

    Contested case hearings are the LUC’s most important power.  Contested case hearings are also one of the most valuable tools citizens, agencies, and businesses have to protect public trust resources.

    HB 828 would result in effectively taking away much-needed funds to repair aging infrastructure in existing areas where residents live and work by requiring the funding of infrastructure for areas of new growth.

    HB 828 appears to impose a duty on state and county agencies to provide funding for infrastructure (water, sewer, schools, roads, etc.) to support the new development without requiring the beneficiaries of the new infrastructure to pay any of the costs they are imposing on other taxpayers.

     

    –Marjorie Ziegler

    Tags:

  • 11 Feb 2015 /  environment, news, State Legislature

    The House Committee on Committee on Ocean, Marine Resources, & Hawaiian Affairs will hold decision making on several measures relating to aquarium fishing and marine life. The bills were previously heard on Wednesday, February 11, and received nearly 4,000 pieces of testimony.

    Tags: , ,