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.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs Sept. 8, 2012

Pu`u O`o Crater at the end of the Napau Trail. A guided walk takes Friends members on an eight-hour hike over the Napau Trail.
Photo from letsgo-hawaii.com
THE BIG ISLAND COMMUNITY COALITION is looking for “huge numbers” of citizens to testify at the Public Utilities Commission hearings on both Hawai`i Electric Light Co.’s proposal for a 4.2 percent rate hike, as well as `Aina Koa Pono's proposed biofuel project, says leader Richard Ha. The `Aina Koa Pono contract with the utility would raise electric bills an average of $1 for every 600 kilowatts of residential electricity used. It would also involve cuting trees, brush and crops between Pahala and Na`alehu and making them into pellets to feed a refinery at the mouth of Wood Valley. The end product would be biofuel trucked to HELCO's oil burning power plant near the airport in Kona. The company promises 200 permanent jobs.
       The hearings are Monday, Oct. 29, 6 p.m. at Hilo High School cafeteria, and Tuesday, Oct. 30, 6 p.m. at Kealakehe High School cafeteria. No hearings are scheduled for Ka`u but one is set for O`ahu in November. Last year PUC chair Mina Morita and the commission turned down a similar proposal for `Aina Koa Pono.
      According to Ha, the Big Island Community Coalition opposes both the 4.2 percent rate hike and the new `Aina Koa Pono contract “because they would raise, rather than lower, our electricity rates.” Ha said that if many people show up, “we can make a difference.” 
Mina Morita, Chair of the PUC.
      The Big Island Community Coalition was formed to come up with low cost energy solutions. Its steering committee includes two members of the state Board of Agriculture, Richard Ha, of Hamakua Springs Country Farms, and Michelle Galimba, of Kuahiwi Ranch in Ka`u. It also includes Big Island Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee and Ka`u sugar mill site co-owner Robert Lindsey. Other steering committee members are geothermal proponent Ku`ulei Kealoha Cooper, of Kealoha Estate; John E.K. Dill, member of the state Contractors License Board; Rockne Freitas, vice president for student affairs at University of Hawai`i; Wallace Ishibashi, of the ILWU; D. Noelani Kalipi, a former military attorney and advocate of economic and energy development; Ka`iu Kimura, executive director of `Imiloa Astronomy Center; H. “Monty” Richards, of Kahua Ranch; Marcia Sakai, Dean of University of Hawai`i – Hilo School of Business and Economics; Kumu Lehua Veincent, principal of Big Island Kamehameha School; and Bill Walter, president of W.H. Shipman, Ltd.
      Advisors to the coalition are state House of Representatives Energy Committee chair Denny Coffman, who is running to represent Ka`u into Kona in the November election; Don Thomas, of UH geology schools at Manoa and Hilo; and Robert Rapier, an energy expert who lives in Kamuela.
      In calling for citizens to attend the rate hike public hearing, Ha calls PUC members “caring human beings. But they have to know what the people want.” Ha also says that the “Big Island is in trouble. We have one of the highest electricity rates in Hawai‘i – almost 25 percent higher than O`ahu’s.” He compares high electricity rates to “a giant regressive tax, only worse. As people leave the electric grid to escape its high cost, those who cannot afford to do so pay even more.”
A photo of Richard Ha from the Kohala Center,
 which describes him as "Working at the
intersection of food and energy."
      Ha writes that the Big Island has a robust supply of alternatives to oil. “We need to mobilize and make meaningful change. The world has been using twice as much oil as it’s been finding for 20 to 30 years now, and this trend continues.
      “In the last 10 years, the price of oil has quadrupled. Something significant has changed: This has never before happened in the 150 years comprising our ‘Age of Oil.’” Ha says that in China, “they use two barrels of oil/person/year, and even when oil costs $100/barrel, their economy continues to grow. Here in the U.S., we use 23 barrels of oil/person/year, and at $100 oil, our economy is sputtering. It is reasonable to assume that the price of oil will continue to rise as it continues to be influenced by China’s demand.” Ha asks, “Who here is most vulnerable to rising electricity costs?”
      He gives two answers: Senior citizens on fixed income, who sometimes have to make choices between food, medicine and electricity. “We cannot leave our kupuna – our moms and dads, grandmas and grandpas – out there to fend for themselves. These are the ones who sacrificed so we could have a better life.” He also points to single moms as vulnerable. “I talked to a person who has several kids she hopes to send to college. She told me the threat of rising electricity prices weighs on her every day.”
    See more at hahaha.hamakuasprings.com. See HELCO proposals and community comments at puc.hawaii.gov.

Bob Linsey is running for reelection
as a trustee for OHA.
ROBERT KAMAILE LINDSEY, JR., who is running for re-election as Hawai`i Island Trustee for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, has issued a statement on his background and beliefs. “I bring Aloha to OHA’s table,” he said. “I am mission focused and results driven, my total commitment and passion is “to better conditions for our people. Lindsey said that he has advocated to have OHA’s Strategic Plan updated and operationalized, encouraging his colleagues to “pursue systemic and long term change by establishing strategic priorities, developing strategic outcomes, performance goals aligned to budgets with ongoing reviews. This has been done. We are moving forward and doing our people’s business in a rational, deliberate and thoughtful way.” He said the OHA Strategic Plan is accompanied by a budget “aligned to that plan and a team of committed, energetic employees working tirelessly daily to advance that Plan and give you the quality of life and a tomorrow you so well deserve.”
      Lindsey said he believes “in the democratic process. I see myself as an independent, not aligned with any particular faction or group. I act and vote on issues. I believe in majority rule and I don’t take things personal. There have been moments when I’ve been on the losing side. I accept the will of the majority and move on to other business that needs attention.”
       He says he is a “peacemaker and a believer in consensus building” and that his values include: Aloha I ke kahi I ke kahi; Aloha ke Akua; Pono; Laulima; Ka Manaoio; Ka Manaolana; Ho’olohe; and Pa`a ka waha hana ka lima. See more at boblindsey.net, where the website describes him as family, friend, servant and leader.
      Lindsey is also co-owner of the old sugar mill site in Pahala.

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE will be celebrated at Honu`apo Park Friday, Sept. 21. The public is invited to gather at 3 p.m. and all who attend are encouraged to wear white for a human peace sign photo at 4 p.m. For more info on the event, call 939-9461 or 929-7647.
     Shary Crocker, one of the facilitators of the event, said she and a group of community members that meet once a week to watch films about encouraging compassionate non-violent communication, watched a documentary called Peace One Day and were inspired to host an event of their own. Crocker is a Communication Facilitator and says her late husband lived by the motto "May Peace Be With You." For more on the world agreements around this day, visit http://cultureofpeace.org/idp.

REGISTERING FOR MOLD CERAMICS, for grades 4 through 8, must be completed before Thursday, Sept. 13 for those who want to attend. The classes held at Pahala Community Center from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. start Thursday, Sept. 20, and end Thursday, Oct. 25. There is a fee for supplies. For more, call Nona at 928-3102. 

Trojans last night at Konawaena High School.  Photo by Tanya Ibarra
DESPITE A TOUGH LOSS TO KONAWAENA, 85-0, Ka`u Trojan fans and team sang an arousing rendition of the Ka`u song on the Konawaena campus.

KA`U TROJANS SPORTS LINE-UP FOR TODAY starts with a home volleyball match versus Hilo starts at 10 a.m. Away events include a cross-county meet at Kamehameha at 10 a.m., an air riflery match at Waiakea at 10 a.m., and a bowling match at Kona Bowl in the afternoon. For more, call athletic director Kalei Namohala at 928-2012.

HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE is collected at Wai`ohinu Transfer Station today from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

RECYCLABLES ARE ACCEPTED IN OCEAN VIEW at Atlas Recycling at South Point U-Cart today from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

PEOPLE AND LAND OF KAHUKU, a guided 2.5 mile moderately difficult hike offered tomorrow, takes visitors over rugged terrain and focuses on the human history in the Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The hike starts at 9:30 a.m. and is expected to finish around 12:30 p.m. For more, call 985-6011.

A guided walk takes participants on a 14 mile round trip
hike to explore Napau Trail. Photo from farschman.com
SUNDAY WALK IN THE PARK, a strenuous eight-hour, 14 mile round trip hike exploring the Napau Trail, is offered tomorrow by Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The hike is fast-paced and includes a 620-foot elevation gain. Participants are asked to bring a bag lunch and at least three quarts of water. The hike is open to members but non-members are welcome to join in order to attend. Park entrance fees apply. For more call 985-7373, email admin@fhvnp.org, or visit fhvnp.org.

MUCK-SUCKING IS ON THE AGENDA at an anchialine pool restoration workday on Monday, Sept. 10, when volunteers help remove sediment from the pool. Sign up with Megan Lamson at 769-7629 or kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com.

BEGINNING MACHINE QUILTING CLASSES are offered at Pahala Quilting on Tuesdays, Sept. 11, 18 and 25. For more call, Donna at 238-0505.

KA`U’S KULEANA LANDOWNERS are invited to learn how the Office of Hawaiian Affairs can help them apply for property tax exemption at a meeting Tuesday, Sept. 11, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Pahala Community Center.
      Handed down through Hawaiian families for generations, kuleana lands are usually small parcels surrounded by larger tracts of property and sometimes are landlocked. Call 808-594-1967 for more information.

HAWAI`I WILDLIFE FUND hosts a beach clean up at Kamilo a week from today, Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. All volunteers will meet at Wai`ohinu Park on Hwy 11 near mile marker 65 at 7:45 a.m. and are asked to bring sturdy shoes, bag lunch, sun and wind protection, plenty of drinks and four-wheel-drive vehicles if possible. HWF will supply cleanup materials. Those interested can contact Megan Lamson at 769-7629 or kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com.