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.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs Oct. 22, 2012

Today is Count Day for Pahala Public & School Library, when statistics of use are gathered to determine allocation of funding. It is Count Week for all public libraries. However, Pahala Library is only open Mondays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Supporters encourage patrons to visit the library today.
HAWAI`I TOURISM AUTHORITY and the Japan Association of Travel Agents have signed a memorandum of understanding to boost the number of Japanese visitors to Hawai`i to two million by 2016. Pacific Business News reports that the two agencies plan to launch the initiative on Jan. 1. They said that two million visitors would spend an estimated $4 billion annually, and the state would receive $440 million in tax revenue.
      HTA officials expect 1.4 million Japanese visitors in 2013, up from approximately 1.35 million travelers this year.
      “This MOU represents more than a business relationship and affecting the bottom line,” HTA president and CEO Mike McCartney said in a statement. “The MOU is a natural partnership between the HTA and JATA that reflects and builds upon the historic bond, traditions, cultural heritages and long-term relationship shared between Hawai`i and Japan.” See more at bizjournals.com/pacific/.

HAWAI`I’S UNEMPLOYMENT RATE fell to its lowest level since December 2008. The Department of Labor said the unemployment rate for September was 5.7 percent, down from 6.1 percent in August. Statewide, there were 604,000 employed, while 36,650 people reported being out of work last month.

Na`alehu School, where an additional building was recently completed,
will receive electrical and telecommunication improvements.
GOV. NEIL ABERCROMBIE has announced the release of $91.9 million for various capital improvement projects across the state, with $10 million earmarked for electrical and telecommunications improvements at several Big Island schools, including Na`alehu Elementary. 
      According to a statement from the governor’s office, the projects were selected for their potential to immediately address priority work while stimulating the local economy and creating job opportunities. “Our strategy to stimulate job creation and reinvigorate our economy is working,” said Abercrombie, who noted that his administration has released almost $842 million dollars in capital improvement funds this year.

BIG ISLAND POLICE OFFICERS and Special Olympics athletes and volunteers raised more than $20,000 to support local Special Olympians during the annual Cop on Top event held Sept. 28 to 30 in Kailua-Kona.
      Special Olympics West Hawai`i area director Sandie DelaCruz told Hawai`i Tribune-Herald that all 25 athletes and 17 volunteers and coaches would be able to attend state games on O`ahu. The organization will also be able to purchase uniforms, T-shirts and equipment.
      “It is just wonderful that everyone can go,” she said. “This event is the highlight of their season.”
      For more information, to donate, volunteer or participate, visit sowh.org or contact DelaCruz at 987-5057 or sowhsandie@gmail.com.

Walter Ritte is running for the at-large seat for OHA.
WALTER RITTE, A HAWAIIAN ACTIVIST running for the at-large seat for Office of Hawaiian Affairs, believes OHA “should be a beacon for a sustainable future for all of us in Hawai`i." In Civil Beat, he says, “I truly believe that Hawaiians can and must stand to provide leadership in helping to resolve many of our problems in Hawai`i today. Our indigenous knowledge of how to survive on little dots of land in the middle of the vast Pacific for over a thousand years can provide a better future for all of us."
      He points to Kaho`olawe as an example of how “Hawaiians took leadership and followed their values and traditional knowledge to save an island that was condemned to death in the name of national defense. Just as Hawaiians brought people together to save an entire island, OHA needs to provide the Hawaiian leadership, values and knowledge to insure a sustainable future for Hawai`i. This story is being played out not only here in Hawai`i, but in many other places in the world,” he said. See more at civilbeat.com.

TODAY IS COUNT DAY AT PAHALA LIBRARY. Resource allocation, including staffing, is determined by statistics gathered today. Supporters of Ka`u Libraries encourage patrons to visit the library today from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., even if only to sit and read or to check out or return borrowed items. Each item that is looked at is also counted, so when finished, patrons should leave materials in collection boxes or areas that are placed throughout the library rather than returning them to the shelves.
      It is also Count Week at Na`alehu Library, which is open Monday through Friday.

STATE SENATE CANDIDATES Russell Ruderman and Daryl Lee Smith and County Council District 6 candidates Maile David and Brenda Ford meet the public at Cooper Center in Volcano Village today at 6 p.m. The event is sponsored by League of Women Voters. For more information, call Margaret Drake at 967-7295.

Palila, or Hawaiian Finch
JACKSON BAUER, Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project volunteer coordinator, discusses restoration of the rarely visited forest that harbors the critically endangered palila tomorrow at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Populations of the Hawaiian finch have been severely degraded by over 200 years of damage by grazing animals. $2 donations support park programs, and park entrance fees apply. 

TO COMMEMORATE THE 25TH ANNIVERSARY of its World Heritage Site status and the 40th anniversary of the international World Heritage Convention, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park is offering two events this week, one at the park and one at the Fairmont Orchid on the Kohala Coast.
      A special World Heritage After Dark in the Park presentation takes place Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium. National Geographic Traveler editor Jonathan Tourtellot gives an overview of World Heritage Sites, how World Heritage grows jobs, four common myths about World Heritage and America’s position in the global quest for World Heritage sites. This event is free, and park entrance fees apply.
      World Heritage Anniversary Roundtable is Thursday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fairmont Orchid. Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Big Island Visitors Bureau, and the Fairmont Orchid invite the public to a destination roundtable with Tourtellot, park staff and travel industry leaders. Discussion focuses on why having a World Heritage Site is important, what it means to organizations, and how to leverage this status in outreach efforts. Admission and parking is free. RSVP online at eventbrite.com, or contact Jessica Ferracane at 985-6018 or jessica_ferracane@nps.gov.