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 27, 2011

Ka'u News Briefs Oct. 27, 2011

Abandoned windmills near South Point Road are featured in a short film by PF Bentley. Photo by Julia Neal
SOUTH POINT WINDMILLS have become the stars of a short film called I Aloha Moloka`i - Aftermath, but the windmills are not the new, operating windmills at Kalae. They are the abandoned windmills nearest South Point Road. Filmmaker PF Bentley writes in Civil Beat this morning that residents of Moloka`i and Lana`i don’t want this apocalyptic scene to occur on their islands. He said that such a scene of abandoned technology “is a continuing modern-day David vs. Goliath story.” See the film at civilbeat.com.
     Before the new windfarm was built at South Point, promises were made to take down the old windmills. Explanations for keeping them there have included waiting for a metal recycling opportunity and that plans keep coming up to rehabilitate them and get the old ones running again.

Ella Louis, Dorothy Kalua and Marion Villanueva talk
to Sen. Gil Kahele about saving Pahala Library.
Photo by Kaiali`i Kahele
THE DEMISE OF PAHALA LIBRARY was a hot topic at Sen. Gil Kahele’s community forum last night in Pahala. Dorothy Kalua said she has researched the days the library is open and found 57 closure days this school year – almost a third of the days scheduled. Kalua and Marion Villanueva talked about the library’s problems. It is open only on Monday, Thursday and Friday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., which doesn’t give students and families much time to be there after school or any time on weekends. Students have a hard time getting a library card. Their parents have to come in person to sign for them during library hours, which are working hours. Many teachers and parents are hesitant to take responsibility for lost books and refrain from encouraging students to check out books.
     Rep. Bob Herkes stated that the library, which is air-conditioned, is one of the only buildings safe from vog in Pahala. Anna Carriaga said that perhaps off-duty teachers could help keep the library open. Kahele said he supports the library being open for the children.

Rep. Bob Herkes talks about the new disaster shelter and gym.  
Photo by Kaiali`i Kahele
DURING THE KAHELE FORUM last night, Rep. Bob Herkes talked about his mortgage foreclosure bill that became law this summer. Kahele called it “landmark legislation.” For non-judicial foreclosures it requires banks and homeowners to go through mediation. Herkes said he will write an op-ed piece for the Honolulu newspaper this weekend regarding the measure, which has been called the toughest anti-foreclosure legislation in the country.

THE NEW MEDICAL VAN for Ka`u and South Kona will be on the road before Christmas, said Herkes. He said it will likely overnight at the Ka`u Rural Health Community Association in Pahala, and visit schools and remote locations with a medical staff and telemedicine. Home base will be Kona Hospital.

CONCERNING THE NANI KAHUKU `AINA resort proposal on 16,000 acres across the highway from Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park at Kahuku, Kahele reminded community members that the deadline for comments on the Draft EIS is Nov. 6. The document is available online at the state Department of Health website and in hard copy at Na`alehu Library. Click on this link: http://oeqc.doh.hawaii.gov/Shared%20Documents/EA_and_EIS_Online_Library/Oahu/2000s/2008-07-08-DEA-Kahuku-Village.pdf.
     See more on the Kahele forum in tomorrow’s news briefs.

UNIVERSITY OF HAWAI`I - HILO and Hawai`i Community College will see tuition increases, following a 9-3 vote last night by the Board of Regents. The vote raised tuitions throughout Hawai`i's public higher education system.
     For residents, UH- Hilo tuition will go from $5,640 to $5,800 for the 2012- 2013 school year. HCC tuition will go up $60 a semester. Increases will follow each year, reaching $7,656 for resident tuition at UH Hilo by the 2016 - 2017 school year.

Fresh food from Hester's Ka`u farm is sold at
Volcanoes Farmers Market. Photo by Julia Neal
KOHALA CENTER has received grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help enable Electronic Benefits Transfer card users to purchase food from Volcano Farmers market and five other farmers markets around the island with their EDB cards. Not being able to use EDB cards, which replaced food stamps years ago, is seen as a barrier to healthy eating. The other farmers markets to gain EDB card purchasing are: Hilo Coffee Mill Farmers Market in Mountain View, Ho'oulu Community Farmers Market in Kona, Keauhou Farmers Market in Kona, Kinoole Farmers Market in Hilo, and Maku'u Farmers Market in Puna. Project coordinator Melani Bondera said that low-income households on this island "spend nearly double what their mainland counterparts spend on food. "Increasing EDB access at farmers markets will respond to the immediate needs of island residents to obtain fresh local food that will improve the overall health of their families,"Bondera said.

HAWAI’I COUNTY REDISTRICTING COMMISSION  has released new maps which can be viewed on the county website: http://www.co.hawaii.hi.us/council/reapp/index.htm. For more information, contact Karen Eoff at 323-4264 or keoff@co.hawaii.hi.us. The commission will meet again on Nov. 3 and Nov. 10 at 10 a.m. in Hilo. One of the plans separates Volcano from Ka'u and could see Brenda Ford and Brittany Smart running against each other.

PARKING LOT AND ROAD CLOSURES in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park include today and tomorrow, when Hilina Pali Road will be open at night only. Kulanaokuaiki campsite will be inaccessible by vehicle during daylight hours and campers are encouraged to consider the newly remodeled facilities at Namakani Paio campground. Due to ongoing road work, visitors should expect 15-minute delays in construction areas. Check www.nps.gov/havo for updates.

TROJAN GIRLS VOLLEYBALL put up a strong fight against Sacred Hearts at Kaimuki Gym yesterday on O`ahu. Sacred Hearts, however, defeated Ka'u 25-15, 25-23 and 27-25.