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, December 15, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs Dec. 15, 2012

Santa Bobby Gomes and his Jingle Bells during Christmas in Pahala last night. Photos by Julia Neal
A PETITION REQUESTING a public hearing in Pahala regarding the proposed 20-year contract between `Aina Koa Pono and Hawaiian Electric Light Co. for 16 million gallons of biodiesel a year has been sent to Public Utilities Commission chair Mina Morita and was posted this week on the PUC website.
Gifts came from many Ka`u businesses, community groups and residents,
with shave ice from `O Ka`u Kakou.
      The diesel would be manufactured at a proposed refinery off Wood Valley Road from biomass harvested between Pahala and Wai`ohinu. Electric bills on both O`ahu and the Big Island would go up to help the utility buy the diesel. `Aina Koa Pono held public meetings on the issue in 2011 but none in 2012, after its first proposal was denied by the PUC based largely on the proposition of higher electric bills.
       This year, the PUC held public hearings on AKP’s second proposal on O`ahu and the Big Island but none in Ka`u. Jasmine Branco, office manager for state Rep. Richard Onishi, emailed the petition to the PUC on Thursday. Signed by many residents of Ka`u, the petition says, “Although public hearings on this docket were held in Hilo and Kailua-Kona, many individuals in Pahala did not have the opportunity to share their concerns with you and other commissioners, as well as the Consumer Advocate and HELCO about the direct impact of the proposed development/facility in our community. Therefore we the undersigned ask that the commission do not proceed on this application without first providing our community the opportunity to share comments/concerns. Your consideration and understanding of this important request is greatly appreciated.” The petition asks Morita to contact Ka`u Resource & Distance Learning Center at 928-0101 with any questions.
      The petition and other input to the PUC, and the `Aina Koa Pono proposal itself can be read at http://puc.hawaii.gov under “What’s New?” Click on Application for Approval of Biodiesel Supply Contract with `Aina Koa Pono-Ka`u LLC and then click on documents.

Derelict nets are loaded into a Matson
container. Photos from HWF
HAWAI`I WILDLIFE FUND loaded eight tons of nets collected from the Ka`u Coast into a 40-foot Matson container in December. Six volunteers prepared 16,043 pounds of derelict fishing nets for shipping to O`ahu. 
      This is the third 40-foot container in three years that Hawai`i Wildlife Fund contributed to NOAA’s Nets-to-Energy program. The collaboration allows the reuse and recycling of fishing nets collected over the year during beach cleanup events and net recovery coastal runs. Once nets arrive on O`ahu, metal-recycling company Schnitzer Steel cuts the bundles into pieces and delivers them to the H-Power Plant in Kapolei where Covanta Energy Group burns them to turn turbines that generate electricity.
      The collaboration is supported by Matson Navigation and Schnitzer Steel. In Ka`u, donors include Jeff Anderson Sawmill Services of Ocean View, which provides equipment and manpower.
      Hawai`i Wildlife Fund coordinator Megan Lamson said, “The Nets-to-Energy partnership is a great collaboration that allows us to take something that is detrimental to native wildlife and turn it into something functional.”
Derelict nets are shipped to O`ahu
where they are burned to make electricity.
      She noted that the mission of Hawai`i Wildlife Fund is “to protect native plants and animals of Hawai`i nei.” Removing large fishing net bundles helps achieve that goal. Hauling them away from the Ka`u Coast ensures that nets have no chance to re-float and re-endanger marine life, Lamson said..
      For more information on supporting Hawai`i Wildlife Fund through contributing and volunteering, see wildhawaii.org or call Lamson at 769-7629.
      The next volunteer day for a Ka`u Coast cleanup is set for Saturday, Jan. 12.

OCEAN VIEW COMMUNITY CENTER’S remote testimony site will be available to Ka`u residents during next week’s committee and County Council meetings held at West Hawai`i Civic Center. Committee meetings begin at 9 a.m. Tuesday, and County Council meets at 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

IMPLEMENTATION OF HAWAI`I TEEN OUTREACH PROGRAM in Hawai`i County is on the agenda at Wednesday’s County Council meeting. District 6 Council member Brenda Ford introduced the resolution. HITOP’s goal is to develop the positive potential of teens with the intended results of less risk-taking behaviors such as violence, school failure and teen pregnancy. The resolution says the Prosecuting Attorney’s office, under Mitch Roth, has agreed to implement the project throughout the county. For more information about the program, visit hawaiihealthmatters.org.

Hundreds of gifts around the Christmas tree went
to children and adults at Christmas in Pahala.
CHRISTMAS IN PAHALA drew hundreds of keiki, parents and kupuna to the corner of Ohia and Kamani Streets in Pahala last night for food, music and gifting for the event founded by Keala Kailiawa. Bobby Gomes was Santa Claus and Ty Chun emceed and sang with Sheldon Salmo. `O Ka`u Kakou set up the event and provided food on the grounds of Pahala Plantation Cottages, where Olson Trust put up a lighted Christmas tree. Many Ka`u businesses and community members contributed gifts to this second annual event, from Ka`u Coffee Mill to Punalu`u Bake Shop and `O Ka`u Kakou; CU Hawai`i Federal Credit Union; Island Market; Hana Hou; Shaka’s Restaurant; B&E Propane; John Masters; Grandma's Closet: contractor Mike Munnerlyn; Pahala Quilting; Volcano Art Center; Lynn Hamilton; Kobe, Cameron and Chloe Moses; Guy Sesson; Tutu & Me; The Ka`u Calendar and Ka`u Community Radio. Donors reached out from as far away as Creative Arts in Hilo.

THY WORD MINISTRIES HOSTS Christmas in Ka`u today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Na`alehu Hongwanji Hall with a craft fair, live entertainment by various church groups and free lunch while supplies last. 

KEIKI CHRISTMAS PARTY at Ocean View Community Center takes place today at 11 a.m. with food, face painting, storytelling, games and prizes. Each child receives a photo with Santa and a gift.

Mrs. Claus is at Island Market today.
Photo from Island Market
MRS. CLAUS WILL BE AT ISLAND MARKET in Na`alehu today until 1 p.m., offering free baked goods samples and recipes from her kitchen. In light of the holiday season and Christmas, Island Market is having a Baking Sale and has ingredients on sale including flour, eggs, sugar, butter, and margarine. Last week Mrs. Claus was at International House of Pancakes and the Prince Kuhio Mall in Hilo, where photos were taken by families. Island Market invites Ka`u families to bring cameras and enjoy time with Mrs. Claus who wishes everyone “Happy Holidays and a very Merry Christmas.”

HO, HO, HO! VOLCANO COMEDY SHOW! is today at 6:30 p.m. and tomorrow at 2 p.m. at Volcano Art Center’s Ni`aulani Campus in Volcano Village. Tickets are $12, or $10 for Volcano Art Center members. Call 967-8222.