About The Ka`u Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Ka`u News Briefs Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015

Punalu`u tidepools and the keiki swimming hole are surrounded by keiki fishing with their families. The tiny fish are put back in the water after measuring them for the competition. Photos by Julia Neal
PLANS FOR A WASTE-TO-ENERGY PLANT in Hawai`i County have been scrapped, reports Nancy Cook Lauer in Hawai`i Tribune-Herald. Mayor Billy Kenoi told her his decision is based on the dramatic decrease in oil prices, which would make it less feasible for Hawaiian Electric Light Co. to purchase energy produced by the county.
County Council member Maile Medeiros David and `O Ka`u Kakou
volunteer at Tutu & Me's preschool education tent
at the Keiki Fishing Tournament. Photo by Julia Neal
      Last year, the cost the utility would have paid for power from an outside source was about 20 cents per kilowatt-hour, according to the story, three cents more that a calculated cost-effective rate. The amount has dropped as low as eight to 10 cents, Kenoi said.
      The mayor said he will work on diverting more waste from landfills, focusing on organic and green waste. He will also work to get a state permit to increase capacity at Hilo landfill and lengthen its life by eight to 10 years.
      Kohala’s County Council member Margaret Wille said, “We had an educated public, and no way were we going to be steamrolled into a 25-year contract. This is exactly the thing we’ve been trying to say. Conditions change, and we need to be flexible and not locked in. Now we need to move into the conversation, the right conversation.” Wille said the county needs to pick up the pace on its landfill diversion programs, such as recyling and composting.
      The county’s diversion rate has increased from 29 percent when Kenoi took office in 2008 to 37 percent this year, Kenoi said.
      “Any difficult decision is going to create a lot of conversation and discussion, and that’s healthy,” Kenoi said. “We were trying to take a liability and make it an asset. We engaged in the process in good faith, but unforeseen factors came into play.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park's Jaggar Museum, above, and Kilauea Visitor
Center announce new operating hours. NPS photo by Ed Shiinoki
EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, JAGGAR MUSEUM in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Kilauea Visitor Center is also open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Hawai`i Pacific Parks Association bookstores within both visitor facilities have the same hours. 
      The new hours address periods of peak visitation and enable the park to keep both centers open seven days a week. The park itself will remain open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
      Visitors who arrive before operational hours at Jaggar Museum and Kilauea Visitor Center are encouraged to enjoy the view of Kilauea Volcano’s summit eruption from the outdoor observation deck adjacent to Jaggar Museum or at other vantage points along Crater Rim Trail. Popular places like `Akanikolea (Steam Vents), Nahuku (Thurston Lava Tube) and Kilauea Iki Trail are often best enjoyed before 9 a.m. when the park is not as busy.
      Free, ranger-guided programs originate at both Jaggar Museum and the Kilauea Visitor Center. At Jaggar Museum, visitors can enjoy daily “Life on the Edge” ranger talks at 2 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. to learn about the current eruption from Halema`uma`u Crater and Kilauea Volcano’s eruptive nature. At Kilauea Visitor Center, “Explore the Summit” walks are offered at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., and the daily “How it All Started” geology talk is presented daily at 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. All other activities for the day are posted after the visitor centers open.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Punalu`u Black Sand Beach with a string of keiki and families in `O Ka`u Kakou's fishing tournament. Photo by Julia Neal
ELIZABETH FIEN IS NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR 
for Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Fien will be responsible for implementation and oversight of all aspects of the nonprofit group’s operation, including conservation, stewardship, development, external relations, governance and general management. She will also lead the organization as it prepares to celebrate Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park’s 100th anniversary in 2016.
Elizabeth Fien
      Fien is the first to hold the Executive Director position for Friends. FHVNP was previously managed by an all-volunteer board of directors. She has been with the organization since 2012 and previously served as its Education & Development Coordinator and Director of Development.
      Since her tenure with FHVNP, Fien has doubled the organization’s income, obtained over $140,000 in grants and formed a partnership with Volcano House providing educational tours of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. She also established significant financial support from the Geist Foundation and several other foundations for the park’s Youth Ranger Internship program.
      Fien brings to FHVNP a 20-year track record of successful leadership, management and fundraising. She spent the early part of her career in legal health care management with Rocky Mountain Health Care Corporation in Denver. After moving to Hawai`i in 1995, she worked as a nonprofit consultant raising funds for Bridge House, Friends of Waimanalo Library and Waimanalo Health Center, where she served as Board President from 2007-2009.
      “I am humbled and honored to help lead and collaborate on the important work that lies ahead for the Friends – an organization that has made such a difference to all of us who love Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park and this part of Hawai`i,” Fien said. “With ambitious goals to engage more youth in the park, balance the visitor experience and use with resource protection, and strengthen community involvement and support, the Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park is an exciting place to be as we approach the park’s centennial.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

The Red Cross teaches keiki about disaster preparedness
at the Keiki Fishing Tournament today.
Photo by Julia Neal
GOVERNOR DAVID IGE HAS ANNOUNCED nominations of Carleton Ching to serve as Chair of Hawai`i’s Department of Land and Natural Resources and Kekoa Kaluhiwa as First Deputy. 
      Ching has devoted much of his career to creating communities for Hawai`i’s residents. He spent a decade with Hawai`i Housing Authority, where he specialized in building affordable homes and facilitated a resolution to the contentious conflict between Waiahole-Waikane Community Association and the state. Following this he worked for Westloch, Inc., Castle & Cooke Kunia, Molokai Ranch and SSFM International. Currently he is Vice President, Community and Government Relations, for Castle & Cooke Hawai`i, where he supports the organization’s real estate, agricultural and renewable energy initiatives. He is an active volunteer with a number of business, housing, health and education nonprofit organizations.
      “Stewardship of Hawai`i’s unique resources is one of the most critical tasks of state government, and Carleton Ching has the heart, knowledge and skills to lead the Department of Land and Natural Resources,” Ige said. “No one understands better the complex issues this Department handles and how to balance the needs of our environment and our residents.”
      Ching graduated from Kaimuki High School and earned a Business Administration degree at Boise State University, where he was an imposing left tackle for the Broncos.
Kekoa Kaluhiwa
      “It’s humbling to be asked to protect Hawai`i’s natural, cultural and historic resources,” said Ching. “I am committed to upholding the mission and purpose of the DLNR. My inspiration comes from my keiki and my mo`opuna. I want to leave Hawai`i a better place for them and for future generations.”
      Kaluhiwa began his career as a fellow at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and then as a graduate intern in the Land Assets Division of Kamehameha Schools. Following this he worked in U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka’s Honolulu office, and he then served for two years as Director of External Affairs for First Wind Energy. He is currently a principal at Kuano`o Communications, where he helps clients understand the unique cultural and environmental challenges of doing business in Hawai`i.
      “Kekoa Kaluhiwa learned about leadership from his kupuna,” said Ige. “He has the education and skill set to carry out his kuleana in an ever changing world. I know he will make a difference.”
       Kaluhiwa is a graduate of Kamehameha Schools and earned a B.A. in political science from the University of Washington. He holds a master’s degree in Public Administration with an emphasis in Environmental Planning and Management Theory from the University of Hawai`i.
      From an early age, natural resource management has been my passion,” said Kaluhiwa. “So it is a privilege for me to serve in this capacity. I have great confidence in the DLNR staff, and I look forward to supporting the kuleana we all share in caring for Hawai`i’s precious environment and host culture.”
       “As in all my departments, no one person can manage it alone,” said Ige. “I’m confident this leadership team will work with DLNR’s committed employees as stewards of the public trust so future generations will be proud to call Hawai`i home.”
      Both appointments are subject to approval by the Senate. Interim Chairperson Carty Chang and Interim First Deputy Dan Quinn will remain in their respective positions until new leaders are confirmed by the Senate.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

`O KA`U KAKOU HELD ITS sevenenth annual Keiki Fishing Tournament at Punalu`u Beach Park today. More photos and results are coming up in future Ka`u News Briefs.

Keoki Kahumoku and friends play for the annual `O Ka`u Kakou
Keiki Fishing Tournament. Photo by Julia Neal
ONE WEEK FROM TODAY on Saturday, Jan. 31 is a jazz concert to support an afterschool music program at Ka`u Middle School. The school has a band room full of instruments that have not been used for years due to budget cuts. Through a grant to Volcano Art Center from the Hawai`i State Foundation on Culture & the Arts, Volcano Choy will begin teaching afterschool music classes this winter and spring. 
      The jazz concert at Pahala Plantation House will help raise funds to restore the brass and woodwind instruments, to buy sheet music and cover other costs of the program.
      The outdoor concert will be from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., with food and drinks available for purchase. Suggested donation is $15. Donations may also be made directly to VAC. Call 967-8222.

SUPPORT OUR SPONSORS AT PAHALAPLANTATIONCOTTAGES.COM AND KAUCOFFEEMILL.COM. KA`U COFFEE MILL IS OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.



Friday, January 23, 2015

Ka`u News Briefs Friday, Jan. 23, 2015

Ka`u residents can learn about natural farming at Earth Matters Farm workshops tomorrow and next Saturday.
HAWAI`I COUNTY COUNCIL MEETINGS are now live online, beginning with today’s meeting at West Hawai`i Civic Center in Kona. County Council committee meetings will also be live-streamed, giving Ka`u residents unprecedented access to county government.
Ka`u residents can now watch Hawai`i County
Council meetings with member Maile Medeiros
David live online.
      According to a story in Hawai`i Tribune-Herald, the county has contracted with live-streaming and captioning provider Granicus for $25,420 for the first year and $7,000 less for subsequent years. Closed-captioning is an additional $145 per hour.
      The meetings will also be archived for later access online.
      “We’re excited to have it start,” County Clerk Stewart Maeda told reporter Nancy Cook Lauer.
      Julia Neal, Editor of The Ka`u Calendar newspaper, said, “This will give our news team and the whole Ka`u community a better ability to cover County Council meetings and Ka`u issues even though they take place more than an hour’s drive from most places in Ka`u. We look forward to increasing our reporting.”
      Videoconferencing continues at Ocean View Community Center, where Ka`u residents can provide testimony during meetings.
      To view meetings, see hawaiicounty.gov and click on the Council Meetings link at left.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

SEN. MAZIE K. HIRONO COMMENDED President Obama’s State of the Union address in which he discussed efforts to strengthen the U.S. middle class and provide higher education.
      “The President made it clear he is on the side of the middle class, and I’m proud to stand with him on the side of working families,” Hirono said. “I will support the President’s efforts that strengthen our economy and grow the middle class… .
      “The President’s forward thinking initiative to fund two years of community college will be a game changer for families I’ve met in Hawai`i and across the country. We must make investing in our keiki and our future a top priority — from expanding Pre-K to making college more affordable… .
      “I also stand with the President against any efforts to dismantle critical Wall Street reforms and environmental protections. In our island state, we are particularly aware of how important it is to protect our land, water and other natural resources in the face of our changing climate.
U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono
      “Tonight the President laid out how we must invest in our middle class families, which means investing in our infrastructure. In Hawai`i, investing in our roads, ports, public transit systems and airports will not only be good for commerce but also create jobs and strengthen communities.”
      “I look forward to working with the Administration and engaging in many spirited debates with my colleagues to achieve an agenda that works for Hawaii and is on the right side of American middle class and working families, homeowners, and students.”
       To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

THE ALLIANCE FOR SOLAR CHOICE and other clean energy advocates are pointing out what TASC calls the hypocrisy of Hawaiian Electric Companies plan to change Hawai`i’s net energy metering program, which allows customers full credit for each kilowatt hour of energy they produce for the grid, and to expand the amount of solar that will be allowed on each circuit. Under its proposed new interconnection plan, HECO pays roughly half the retail rate for exported kilowatt hours, according to TASC.
      “The solar parties applaud the finding that there are no technical or engineering impediments to doubling the amount of rooftop solar,” said Robert Harris, spokesperson for TASC. “The industry worked long and hard to address any and all technical concerns raised by HEI. We have consistently maintained that more rooftop solar could be installed safely, and we are happy HEI is proposing to serve more of its customers with a renewable and clean option of providing power. 

      “We think it’s sheer hypocrisy that HEI would finally agree to allow more rooftop solar but in the same breath propose eliminating net energy metering,” Harris said. “This is a play out of the national utility playbook to stop rooftop solar – allege costs and try to make HEI’s expensive fossil fleet more competitive with solar. Net energy metering is a popular program found in 44 states and is the bedrock of solar adoption across the United States.
      “TASC advocated for comprehensive rate reform that reflects the new world HEI finds themselves in, where rooftop solar is vastly cheaper than utility power from fossil fuels… .

      “As observed by Hawai`i’s Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism, HECO’s plan to abandon net energy metering and to charge each customer at least $55 is intended to ‘enhance the Companies’ bottom line, serve to disincentives customers from investing (in) Distributed Generation systems or lead to policies that unduly restrict DG integration options.’ Moreover, to the extent HEI now maintains this is a priority issue, HEI hasn’t taken the logical step of trying to change rates in a rate case over the past several years.
      “In June 2014, HECO stated ‘it is foregoing a rate increase request in recognition that its customers are already in a challenging high electricity bill environment.’ In December 2014, Maui Electric Company filed its rate-case application and did not propose any revisions to its current tariffs or rate schedules.


      “If this issue is so urgent, why isn’t HEI asking for rate adjustments in their standard rate cases?” asked Harris. “Rate case proceedings are the obvious forum for a rate design discussion. The law specifically prevents single-issue ratemaking the way HECO now proposes.
      “

In hindsight, perhaps HEI’s lack of attention to this issue in commission proceedings is the result of the utility leadership’s focus on finalizing terms to sell itself to a mainland company. Now that NextEra, which owns one of the most hostile utilities to rooftop solar in the country, has agreed to purchase HEI, the utility is re-engaging on rate reforms that would significantly increase its customers’ costs to go solar.”
       To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I WILDLIFE FUND WISHES KA`U residents the very best in 2015, “and we hope to see you soon,” said Ka`u Coast Cleanup coordinator Megan Lamson. 
      Starting today, HWF has a round of community cleanup events in the coming months that Ka`u residents an participate in as volunteers.
      Today, HWF collaborates with Sustainable Coastlines Hawai`i (O`ahu) and Kona Brewing Company to clean up around the hoists at South Point. Cleanup takes place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., and free lunch from KBC after that. More information is available at https://www.facebook.com/events/367218540119436/.
      On Sat. Feb. 7, HWF will host a Ka`u Community Coastal Cleanup event at Pa`ula/Lepana on the Kalaemano property. Volunteers are asked to RSVP to kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com. 4WD vehicles are needed, and space is limited in HWF vehicles. This cleanup is made possible with logistic support by Kuahiwi Ranch. Meet at Wai`ohinu Park at 7:45 a.m. for carpool/caravan to cleanup site.
      On Sun. March 15, HWF teams up with Kona Boys and Hawai`i State Parks for it second annual kayak and cleanup event at Ka`awaloa (Captain Cook Monument) in South Kona. Space is very limited, so please RSVP early. Volunteers must be over 16 and be able to swim, paddle a kayak and haul debris over 25 pounds.
      On Saturday March 28, HWF host another Ka`u Community Coastal Cleanup event at Kamilo Point along the Wai`ohinu coastal strand.
      Volunteers for all events are asked to RSVP to kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com.
      These cleanups are made possibly by grant funding from NOAA’s Marine Debris Program and in-kind support from community groups and businesses.
       To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

IN SPORTS, KA`U HIGH BOYS VARSITY BASKETBALL team scored a win in Hilo on Tuesday, 49-40. JV lost, 27-57. The teams host Kohala today at 6 p.m.
      On Wednesday, girls varsity basketball lost to Konawaena 27-81. JV did not play. The senior game is tomorrow at 6 p.m., hosting Hawai`i Preparatory Academy.
      Kamehameha-Hawai`i shut out Ka`u boys soccer team Tuesday, 0-9. The team travels to Kohala tomorrow for a match at 3 p.m.
       To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

`O KA`U KAKOU’S SEVENTH ANNUAL Fishing Tournament & Canned Food Drive takes place tomorrow at Punalu`u Beach Park. Ages one to 14 check in between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. for fishing from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. OKK provides poles, bait and free lunch. Registration is available.
      Call 217-2253 or 937-4773 for more information.

KA`U NATURAL FARMING WORKSHOP begins tomorrow and continues next Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Earth Matters Farm at South Point and Kama`oa Roads. Participants learn about creating soil health & nutritional food.
      $100 for both days includes garden lunch.
      Register at 939-7510.

Whale season is in full swing off Punalu`u.
Photo by Susan Field
HAWAIIAN ISLANDS HUMPBACK WHALE National Marine Sanctuary is looking for volunteers for the 2015 Sanctuary Ocean Count. Now in its 20th year, this project uses volunteers to count whales and record their behaviors from over 60 shore sites on the islands of O`ahu, Kaua`i and Hawai`i. The project allows the public to learn more about humpback whale population, distribution and behavioral trends while being involved in a volunteer monitoring effort. Sanctuary Ocean Counts will be held on Saturdays, Jan. 31, Feb. 28 and March 28 at selected sites from 8 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
      Interested volunteers may register online a  http://sanctuaryoceancount.org.

SUPPORT OUR SPONSORS AT PAHALAPLANTATIONCOTTAGES.COM AND KAUCOFFEEMILL.COM. KA`U COFFEE MILL IS OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.








Thursday, January 22, 2015

Ka`u News Briefs Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015

Ka`u WWII 442nd Division veterans Iwao Yonemitsu, at left, and Tokuichi Nakano, here with former Hawai`i Gov. Neil Abercrombie, became Chevaliers of the French Legion of Honor yesterday. Photo by Geneveve Fyvie

CHEVALIER OF THE LEGION OF HONOR is the title bestowed on Ka`u residents Tokuichi Nakano and Iwao Yonemitsu by the French Republic during a ceremony yesterday at West Hawai`i Veterans Cemetery. French Consul General Pauline Carmona said her country owes the Nisei soldiers of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team a debt of eternal gratitude for the role they played in liberating France from Nazi occupation.
 Iwao Yonemitsu and Tokuichi Nakano at a Veterans Day
ceremony at Kilauea Military Camp. Photo by Julia Neal
      “The people of France have not forgotten,” she said during her address. “Their children and grandchildren have not forgotten. They will never forget.”
      Retired Army Col. Debra Lewis, of Hilo, said soldiers in the 442nd and 100th Battalion overcame a 314 percent casualty rate and were the most decorated for their size and the duration of time they fought.
      “This devotion to duty and to each other have inspired generations long after the last weapon was fired,” Lewis said. “They understood that anger against our country for unfair treatment (of Japanese Americans) was a luxury they could not afford. These brave men decided failure was not an option.”
      Also receiving the Legion of Honor were Kazuma Taguchi of Hilo, Hidetaka Sato of Honaunau and Mitsuo Tachibana of Hilo. Sato and Tachibana received awards posthumously.
      Nakano told Bret Yager, of Hawai`i Tribune-Herald, about a firefight on the outskirts of a town in Italy that that led to German forces’ retreat.
      “I put up my small tent outside and was cleaning my rifle,” he said. “The Army newspaper came. I looked at the paper, and there it was: the Germans are gone. It’s all over. That was the happiest day of my life.”
      Yonemitsu told Yager, “One of the first things we learned when you change position: Dig your foxhole so you have somewhere to go when the shells come. I don’t know how many holes I dug. Some days, I dug two.”
      Yonemitsu said that although he doesn’t know half of the 442nd casualties, “the people I trained with who were killed will remain forever young.”
      Nakano and Yonemitsu have volunteered for the last dozen years to assemble monthly issues of The Ka`u Calendar.
      See hawaiitribune-herald.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Recycle Hawai`i sponsors
compostiing workshops.
RECYCLE HAWAI`I HAS LOST ITS CONTRACT with the county to offer free public educational services about recycling. On its website at recyclehawaii.org, the nonprofit says its mission “is to promote resource awareness and recycling enterprises in Hawai`i. To achieve this, we educate the community about sound resource management and recycling opportunities for a more environmentally sustainable future.” 
      Among the programs it sponsors are composting classes, annual Treecycling to recycle holiday trees and Art of Recycling exhibits where students exhibit artworks made of recycled materials.
      Recycle Hawai`i opposes county proposals to build a waste-to-energy plant that would incinerate trash to generate electricity. “We said ‘No’ in 2008! Let’s stand up together (again) to let them know we want mo’ bettah ways!” the organization states on its website.
      “The education we’re doing is diametrically opposed to the mass burn of resources to be recycled,” Recycle Hawai`i Director Paul Buklarewicz told West Hawai`i Today reporter Nancy Cook Lauer.
      According to the story, the nonprofit had a $100,000 annual contract for more than 10 years for education and outreach. Mayor Billy Kenoi told Cook Lauer the money will be used for direct recycling programs. He said Recycle Hawai`i still has other current county contracts, including a $258,000 contract to operate seven reuse centers at county transfer stations and a $58,000 contract to collect and dispose of used motor oil.
      “We believe our dollars are best spent on actual recycling,” Kenoi said.
      See westhawaiitoday.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.  

COMMUNITY POLICING OFFICERS ARE WORKING with Hawai`i County Planning Department to protect the public from illegal rave parties, which have been reported in Ka`u in the past. As a result of this partnership, the Planning Department issued a $5,000 fine to a property owner in connection with a rave party in Hawaiian Acres last year.
      The two-day event held Oct. 31 through Nov. 1 was advertised on social media outlets. Community Policing Officers were made aware of the event and warned the property owner that he did not have the proper permit to conduct such an event on his property.
      The party was held despite police warnings, and enforcement action was taken near the property on the night of the event to ensure public safety. Police conducted a follow-up investigation with the assistance of the Planning Department that resulted in the fine.
      Police are reminding property owners that conducting unpermitted non-agricultural commercial events on agricultural property is prohibited. The Hawai`i Police Department will continue to work with members of the public, property owners and the Planning Department to ensure compliance and enhance public safety.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
is a veteran.
U.S. REP. TULSI GABBARD SUPPORTED with much of what President Obama said in his State of the Union address this week but has reservations about his stance on fighting terrorism. “Rather than focus on words tonight, we should focus on what is ahead for our nation,” Gabbard said. 
      “Growing our economy, and truly building a strong middle class, must drive our legislative agenda. I agree with the President's focus on building the 21st century infrastructure that our businesses and communities need – more modern airports, stronger bridges and the fastest Internet. This is something that Democrats and Republicans can agree on.
      “America also needs true Wall Street reform, which begins with reinstating Glass-Steagall. The financial stability of our nation depends on serious efforts to prevent Wall Street from making risky investments at taxpayer expense. The focus must always be on the needs of Main Street; we must prevent big banks from gambling with the well–being of our nation.
      “Finally, national security is top of mind for people across the country. The President was right to come to Congress tonight and ask for authorization to use military force against ISIS; my concern however is that the Administration still has not accurately identified our enemy, nor have they clearly articulated what the strategy will be to defeat this enemy.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Sen. Mazie Hirono
TODAY IS THE 42ND ANNIVERSARY of the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that disallowed many state and federal restrictions on abortions. 
       To recognized the date, Sen. Mazie Hirono said, “As a college student at the University of Hawai`i, I wrote my first political letter to Hawai`i’s Congressional delegation asking for their position on a woman’s right to choose. At the time, abortion was illegal in nearly every state, and Hawai`i was considering, and eventually passed, one of the nation’s first laws to partially legalize it.
      “It’s been a hard fight, but we’ve come a long way since I was in college to expand and protect women’s health care rights. Today, because of the Affordable Care Act, women have access to critical preventative health care services like contraception and mammograms and are not penalized by insurance companies simply for being a woman. However, the battle over women’s health care continues. In recent years, many states have passed laws restricting a women’s fundamental right to choose.
Car seats are inspected today.
Photo from wikipedia
      “We must stand vigilant against these attacks on women’s health. Today on the 42nd anniversary of the monumental Roe v. Wade decision, I challenge Congress to reject the extremists and stand on the side of women and middle class families. Instead of endlessly fighting to repeal Roe v. Wade, blocking access to common forms of birth control and opposing paid family leave, Congress should be focused on making it easier for women to succeed in our 21st century economy. We should make education more affordable, ensure men and women get paid the same wage for the same work and make it easier for women to balance work and family.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

CAR SEAT INSPECTIONS ARE AVAILABLE from Hawai`i County Fire Department trained technicians at Pahala Community Center today. Families with young children are invited to take advantage of this free service and drop in and play at Tutu and Me while they are there. 
       Each inspection takes about 20 minutes to complete. Technicians will stay as long as there are car seats to inspect.

KEIKI CAN STILL REGISTER at local schools and businesses for `O Ka`u Kakou’s seventh annual Fishing Tournament & Canned Food Drive coming up Saturday at Punalu`u Beach Park. Ages one to 14 check in between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. for fishing from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. OKK provides poles, bait and free lunch. Registration is available.
      Call 217-2253 or 937-4773 for more information.

KA`U NATURAL FARMING WORKSHOP is set for the next two Saturdays, Jan 24 and 31, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Earth Matters Farm at South Point and Kama`oa Roads. Participants learn about creating soil health & nutritional food. 
      $100 for both days includes garden lunch.
      Register at 939-7510.

SUPPORT OUR SPONSORS AT PAHALAPLANTATIONCOTTAGES.COM AND KAUCOFFEEMILL.COM. KA`U COFFEE MILL IS OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.