About The Kaʻū 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.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ka`u News Briefs Oct. 20, 2011

Open area on Ka`u High School campus suggested for the gym and disaster shelter at yesterday's
County Council meeting.  Photo by Julia Neal
THE $17.9 MILLION KA`U DISASTER SHELTER AND GYM’s first reading was approved by the County Council yesterday. The Council must formally accept the money from the state to begin the new project. Bradley Westervelt, who worked on the gym proposal as a member of former County Councilman Guy Enrique’s staff, urged the county to consider placing the gym in “the center of the school campus, adjacent the county sports fields, in between all the existing school facilities. This location would put it adjacent to all the other athletic departments, and not a satellite on the perimeter,” he stated. 
     Westervelt described another possible site, next to the tennis courts in Pahala, as the Village Green, “an open space, general purpose field in front of the schools. This plot is used for event parking, kite flying, track and field practices and many other kinds of activities. It is in the very center of the village. Building anything there would be an aesthetic catastrophe,” said Westervelt.
     He also addressed ventilation for the gym and disaster shelter: “For maximum efficiency as an emergency shelter, a ventilation tower/hvac system need only be modest, primarily servicing the smaller parts of the facility; the majority of the gym space should be naturally vented but have weather resistant shutters to be closed only during bad dust, fire and vog events,” recommended Westervelt.

DRUNKEN AND UNLICENSED DRIVERS may have their vehicles impounded when arrested by police. A new law passed the County Council yesterday allowing police to use discretion when stopping people for intoxication and when coming upon an unlicensed driver, a driver with a suspended license and anyone driving a car with license plates, safety and/or registration stickers not issued for that car. 
     The new law is called Alyah’s law and was named for an infant killed in a motor vehicle crash caused by drunken driving.

PAHALA PUBLIC & SCHOOL LIBRARY is closed today and will be shut down from Oct. 27 through Nov. 17. According to a release from the state Department of Education, closure is due to staffing shortages. The book drop will be available all the time it is closed, and the library will re-open Friday, Nov. 18. While the library is closed, patrons may use Na`alehu Public Library on Hwy 11. Call 939-2442. The statewide library website, where there are many services, is librarieshawaii.org. 

VOTING BY MAIL could become a reality for Big Island citizens beginning in 2013. It would be done here as a test for the entire state and last through elections in 2018. The County Council voted 6-2 yesterday, approving a resolution that will go to the state Legislature.

PASSING A NEW COUNTY BUILDING CODE was delayed again yesterday by the County Council, with much discussion about whether the code could be less strict than the code adopted by the state.
     According to a Stephens Media story by Erin Miller, County Council chair Dominic Yagong said that word from the state attorney general’s office is that the county could have a less stringent code for residents, but the state would adhere to its more stringent code when constructing its own buildings. Deputy corporation counsel for the county Kyle Chang said he also talked to the state and recommends that the county stick with the more stringent state building code.
     An entirely separate resolution was also discussed concerning a Sustainable Habitat Ordinance that could allow more affordable owner-built homes. 

Plan 28 is one being considered
by the Redistricting Commission.
THE HAWAI`I COUNTY REDISTRICTING COMMISSION meets tomorrow at 10 a.m. in County Council Chambers in Hilo. The Commission will review and discuss submitted plans and maps and begin creating its draft plan. For more information, contact Karen Eoff at 323-4264 or keoff@co.hawaii.hi.us

KA`U HIGH GIRLS VARSITY VOLLEYBALL beat Pahoa last night, winning all three sets, 25-15, 25-9 and 25-18. Marley Strand-Nicholaisen came up with 16 kills. Kamalani Fujikawa made 9 kills, Toni Beck and Joyce Ibasan made 5 kills each, and Joyce Ibasan had four blocks. Coach Elijah Navarro said, “We served them off the court. Our tough serves took them out.” If the team wins on Friday, Ka`u will play for the Division Two championship. The game Friday will be at the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium in Hilo at 4 p.m.

Kahula `O Nawahine Noho Pu`ukapu
KAHULA `O NAWAHINE NOHO PU`UKAPU, with kumu hula Ana Nawahine Kaho`opi`i, present a hula kahiko performance at the hula platform near Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. Practitioners will offer hands-on cultural demonstrations on the gallery porch from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Park entrance fees apply. 

THE KIPUKA`AKIHI HIKE at the Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park this Sunday explores an isolated refuge of rare plants in a remnant old-growth forest. The hike begins at 10 a.m., and pre-registration is required. Call 985-6011.

KA`U SCHOOL OF THE ARTS will hold another Fall Fling, a local arts & crafts fair at Punalu`u Bake Shop Pavilion and Gardens on Saturday, Nov. 5. Musicians and other performers are invited to help fill the day with live local music. Ka`u School of the Arts will provide sound equipment.
     Those with locally made arts and crafts can sign up for vendor’s booths at $25 for the day. Call 929-7544 or 929-8694.