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, May 09, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs May 9, 2012

The population of nene, the state bird, has recovered enough to bother Volcano chard farmer Richard Lee
and to endanger air traffic on Kaua`i.  Photo by Peter Anderson
SUPPORT FOR PRESERVING ROAD TO THE SEA lands has come from County Council member Brittany Smart, who wrote yesterday to Board of Land and Natural Resources Chair William Aila. She said she favors a Legacy Land Conservation grant “for the protection of the Kahuku Coastal Land.” Smart said she visited the more than 3,100-acre parcel multiple times “to experience this historic area” and received “strong messages of community support for this parcel." 
Council member Brittany Smart submitted supporting
testimony to preserve Road to the Sea lands.
Photo courtesy of Megan Lamson
     Wrote Smart, "District 6 constituents have a common message: They want more access and more protection for coastal resources. The property owner and community residents want this parcel in public hands.” She pointed to a County Council Resolution that allows the county Director of Finance to enter into negotiations for the coastal property. 

VARIANCES FOR THE NEW GYM AND SHELTER to be constructed in Pahala will likely be decided within the next month, according to the county Department of Public Works. The agency is asking Planning Director Bobby Jean Leithead-Todd to allow the main building to be 47.5 feet high, instead of the maximum 35 feet height limit allowed by the county. The reason for the taller building is to allow a plantation style roof and also the height needed for such sports as basketball and volleyball. Players are often distracted in the current gym when the ball hits the ceiling during a game. The other variance would allow grass parking for at least half of the proposed parking stalls. The total parking stalls added to the campus would be 163 of which 88 would be paved and 75 grass. Regulations call for another 122 stalls, but the plan is to use the 122 existing stalls on the property for the overage.

HAWAI`I COUNTY has the second highest number of Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders in its population. According the latest U.S. Census Bureau Brief, the City & County of Honolulu leads with 233,637 islanders, followed by Hawai`i County with 62,487 and Los Angeles County with 54,169. The Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population totals 1.2 million nationwide, making up .4 percent of the U.S. population. This population grew 40 percent between the turn of the century and 2010. More than half live in Hawai`i and California, followed by Washington state and Texas. See more at http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-12.pdf.

 Studying the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
Photo by Mario Agullera, Scripps Institute of Oceanography
THE GREAT PACIFIC GARBAGE PATCH, now the size of Texas, is changing the ecology of the ocean between Hawai`i and California, according to an MSNBC news report today. Insects lay eggs on the floating plastics and fish take up residence in the condominium like structures provided by floating crates, cans and bottles. Plastic trash in this swirling gyre increased 100 times over the last 40 years, creating infrastructure for a floating garbage city of marine life, a study from Scripps Institution of Oceanography concluded. Sea skaters, also called water striders, deposit eggs on top of the gyre and fish lay eggs on the plastics, supporting a population of crabs and other ocean predators that are living in the Garbage Patch. One problem, however, is that marine life ingests the plastics, clogging up their digestive systems, which could lead to a shorter lifespan and population decline.

THE NENE IS RECEIVING attention worldwide in an Associated Press story that names this goose as an example of successful recovery of an endangered species. The population of the State Bird of Hawai`i was lingering at 30 in 1953. However, wildlife management efforts that began in 1949 helped the nene recover to a population of more than 2,000. The rebound has been so successful that populations of nene visit farms on the Big Island and hang out in the manmade lagoons at a resort next to Lihu`e Airport on Kaua`i where they can interfere with air traffic. More than 300 nene were airlifted during the last three months with help from the Coast Guard. These nene were introduced to new homes on the Big Island and Maui – in wild lands protected by fencing from predators such as cats and mongoose, the AP story reports. 

The awe-inspiring ice/snow sculptures at Sapporo Snow Festival
are now more accessible from Hawai`i as Hawaiian Airlines
has announced direct flights from Honolulu.
Photo by Chris Spackman
A FOURTH CITY IN JAPAN will receive a new Hawaiian Airlines route, with flights three times a week between Honolulu and Sapporo on the island of Hokkaido. Hawaiian already serves Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka – all of these flights launched within the last two years. Hawaiian Airlines President Mark Dunkerly said the new route gives Japanese visitors direct flights from three major Japan islands to the Aloha State. He said Hawai`i residents will appreciate direct flights to the Sapporo area, with its Alpine landscape, ski resorts and Snow Festival. The new service adds more than 40,000 seats a year between Japan and Hawai`i.
A CREDIT CARD SCAM is reported on the Big Island and police encourage residents to hang up on callers who claim questionable expenses on their credit cards and ask for the security code. Hawai`i police said the scammers are sophisticated, with the person’s credit card number already and name of the bank and cardholder’s address on hand. Giving them the code will allow them to fraudulently use the credit card and police urge residents to end the call and dial the credit card company directly. 

Coffee tastings will be available at the Ka`u Coffee Festival
this Saturday in Pahala. Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
FREE SHUTTLE BUSES will travel between Hilo Hattie in Hilo and Pahala Community Center this Saturday during the annual Ka`u Coffee Festival. Hilo Hattie is one of the events sponsors, creating a Ka`u Coffee display in its store and giving away free postcards at the event. Another sponsor, Big Island Toyota, will display vehicles at the community center. The Edmund C. Olson Trust, and its Ka`u Coffee Mill, is a major financial sponsor and will open the mill on Wood Valley Road all day. Tours from Pahala Community Center to coffee farms and the mill will also be offered all day Saturday for a small donation. The festival begins at 9 a.m., with entertainment and coffee tastings at farmer booths and during the Ka`u Coffee Experience event. It will be broadcast live on KAHU Radio from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The festival ends around 4:30 p.m.

Photo from American Red Cross
LESSONS ON MAKING CONTAINER GARDENS are held tonight at 5 p.m. in Ocean View at the community center by Arroyah Rivas. Rivas helps teach Na`alehu Elementary students about the importance of gardening and composting through the Sewing Seeds program. For more, call Rivas at 939-2413.

THE PUBLIC IS INVITED TO WALK THROUGH Ka`u High and Pahala Elementary Schools tomorrow. To reserve a spot, call 928-2088. 

RED CROSS VOLUNTEERS meet tomorrow night, 7 p.m., at H.O.V.E. Road Maintenance Corp. office in Ocean View. Current volunteers and those interested in becoming volunteers are welcome. For more, call Hannah Uribes at 929-9953.