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.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Ka'u News Briefs Nov. 30, 2011

The county now claims ownership of lands around Kawa Beach for park and wildlife management. Photos by Julia Neal
THE ATTEMPT OF ABEL SIMIONA LUI and his hui to have the court quash a possible eviction from Kawa was turned away by Judge Joseph Florendo yesterday in Third Circuit Court. The ruling was technical. The judge said that the motion filed to stay an eviction improperly included a person named Han Phua, who was not named in the eviction order being appealed, and therefore didn’t have standing in the case. The judge did say, however, that the motion could be re-filed with corrected names, according to a Hawai`i Tribune-Herald story this morning. 
Abel Simeona Lui says he is the rightful caretaker of Kawa
and opposes a county park and preserve there. 
     The article by Chelsea Jensen also reported that Lui talked openly in the courtroom and after several warnings from the judge was removed by the guards. As he was being taken away Lui said, “I oppose everything you’re doing here,” Jensen reported.
     Eviction was approved by the court years ago, when the property was still in the hands of Thomas Okuna, who sold it to the Edmund C. Olson Trust, which held the Kawa land until the community, county, state and federal agencies could raise money to make the popular surfing and fishing spot into a park and preserve for recreation and wildlife. That sale was recently completed in two sections, with the county first purchasing more than 200 acres which were being held and advertised for sale by former Ka`u realtor Marcia Johnson and her hui. The second county purchase at Kawa recently closed and includes more than 500 acres, with acreage at Kawa and other parcels on the coastline stretching toward Punalu`u.
     However, Lui, who has lived there for more than 20 years, claims Kawa was unfairly taken from his family generations ago and that he is the legitimate caretaker of the land.
     As Okuna was unable to carry out the eviction of Lui and the Olson Trust did not evict him while it was holding the property, Lui, over the years, has gathered supporters of Hawaiian sovereignty around him. They claim that the U.S. courts have no jurisdiction over the property. Lui has also filed claims of ownership, which have clouded the land title at Kawa and are involved in a separate court case. Lui vows to stay on at Kawa.

Kawa Flats floods, cutting Na`alehu off from Pahala and its
hospital and school.
KAWA FLOODING is also being targeted by public officials, as a meeting will be held on Thursday, Dec. 8 at 6 p.m. at Na`alehu School Cafeteria on state plans to raise Hwy 11 some ten feet above grade to keep traffic moving during heavy rains. 
     A draft Environmental Assessment has been published and is available at the DOT’s Hawai`i District Office, Pahala and Na`alehu public libraries, and online at http://hawaii.gov/ health/environmental/oeqc/index.html.
     “The highway was constructed over 50 years ago with no drainage facilities for this low-lying section,” the EA states. “Flood waters from an intermittent stream frequently overtop the highway and completely close this round-the-island highway – the only route connecting the two main towns of Ka`u. The flooding is a hazard to motorists, prevents the passage of emergency vehicles, and damages the roadway structure,” the EA says.
     The highway’s surface would be raised a maximum of about 10 feet, to an elevation of 46 feet above mean sea level, placing the road surface approximately two feet above the 50-year flood level. A reinforced concrete box culvert measuring 84 feet wide by eight feet high would be placed beneath the highway.

THINK LOCAL, BUY LOCAL month begins tomorrow. The campaign is a public education initiative that highlights how purchasing locally made and grown products and shopping at locally owned businesses can benefit the community, environment and economy of Hawai`i Island. The campaign is by the Hawai`i Alliance for a Local Economy, under contract with County of Hawai`i Department of Research and Development.
     Mayor Billy Kenoi has declared the month of December Think Local, Buy Local month, with a ceremony Dec. 1 at the Mo`oheau Bandstand in Hilo. 
     Participating businesses can display Think Local, Buy Local window signs and highlight Made on Hawai`i Island products. Ka`u businesses can be a part of the campaign by signing up as a HALE member and paying a $25 membership fee. Benefits include a large media presence that will drive people to the Think Local, Buy Local website; a local business profile; inclusion in a Local Business Directory and Green Map being developed; Think Local, Buy Local signage for retail locations; and Made on Hawai`i Island product stickers for products with 51 percent or more value added on Hawai`i Island.
     “A 2010 national report on Buy Local campaigns found that communities with an active Buy Local campaign experienced markedly stronger revenue growth compared to communities without such a campaign, and independent retailers in Buy Local communities saw a 5.2 percent increase in holiday sales, while those elsewhere reported an average gain of 0.8 percent. During the holiday season, the Think Local, Buy Local campaign is focusing attention on Hawai`i Island grown and made products and locally owned businesses,” said Andrea Dean, principal of Sustainable Initiatives.
     To learn more and participate in Think Local, Buy Local visit www.ThinkLocalBuyLocal.org or call Andrea Dean at 960-3727.

Joey Wells' Lehua Nani
ENTRIES IN VOLCANO ART CENTER’S 12th annual Invitational Wreath Exhibit are on display at the gallery this month. Gallery artists present their concepts of wreath, with creations ranging from the traditional to the whimsical, using a variety of media, materials and techniques. The winning wreath is called Lehua Nani and was created by Joey Wells. 

CHRISTMAS MUSIC FILLS KA`U this weekend. Free concerts featuring the Ka`u Community Chorus, Hannah’s Makana `Ohana and the Ka`u `Ohana Band take place at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday at Ocean View Community Center and Sunday at Discovery Harbour Community Hall.
     The Volcano Festival Chorus Concert is set for Saturday at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Military Camp Chapel in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. This free concert is a gift to the community from Kilauea Drama and Entertainment Network and the chorus. Park entrance fees may apply.