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, April 17, 2013

Ka`u News Briefs, April 17, 2013

Kilauea Iki trail and crater will be explored in the Kilauea Iki hike with Charlene Meyers on April 23, during National Park Week.
Photo by Michael Szoenyi, National Park Service
GRADING OF THE NEW SITE for the Ka`u Gymnasium and Disaster Shelter has begun with excavators working and truckloads of dirt and rocks leaving the site, some of it donated to local businesses and homeowners. Among the local contractors hired to help out are Taylor Built Construction, Inc.
Design of the Ka`u Gym & Disaster Shelter
     The gym and shelter, which could cost up to $20 million when equipped is expected to be completed within 18 months. The location is between the tennis courts and the cafeteria of the Pahala school campus. The complex will be operated by county Department of Parks & Recreation.

A NEW CEO FOR BAY CLINIC, INC. was announced today by its board. Harold Wallace, Jr., MPH, is the new Chief Executive Officer of East Hawai`i’s federally qualified health center.
      A statement from Bay Clinic’s Board Chair Tanya Aynessazian says, “Harold Wallace is an experienced health care professional with significant experience in federally-funded community health centers, physician group management and hospital operations. As the number of uninsured and underinsured patients increase amid a backdrop of changes with the Affordable Care Act, Harold’s leadership comes when our role in health care goes beyond being a safety net – we are essential health care providers in the communities we serve. Harold’s commitment to community health has been demonstrated through his service for over two decades, and we are happy to have his expertise in Hawaii at this time.”
Bay Clinic's new CEO Harold Wallace oversees construction of
 the new facility in Na`alehu along Hwy 11.
      Wallace has served as Bay Clinic’s Interim Chief Executive Officer since June 2012, in which time, according to the statement, “he has strengthened the fiscal operations of the organization and spearheaded two major capital projects, including the new Ka`u Family Health Center on Hwy 11 in Na`alehu.
      The other is the Pahoa Family Health Center renovation project. Both locations will provide expanded access to primary medical and behavioral health care, as well as establish an on-site dental care unit at each location.
      Prior to his appointment as Bay Clinic’s Interim Chief Executive Officer, Wallace was the Chief Executive Officer at Total Health Center, a federal qualified community health center in Texas. As Vice President of Ambulatory Services for the Schneider Regional Medical Center in the US Virgin Islands, Wallace was instrumental in redesigning the outpatient delivery model for physical specialty clinics and in establishing telemedicine services to increase medical access through virtual office services in Rheumatology, Dermatology, Pulmonology and pre/post evaluations for cardiac surgery patients. Wallace also gained experience as the Chief Operations Officer at the Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center, a comprehensive community health center with eleven locations, almost 200 employees and an annual budget of $16 million.
       “With all the current developments, we will continue to grow by actively recruiting providers like our new pediatrician that will be starting at our Pahoa health center in May and implementing technologies like a web-based patient portal to meet the diverse health care needs of our patients,” said Wallace.
      Bay Clinic, Inc. is a federally qualified community health center and 501(c)(3) organization with a 2013 budget of $17 million, and over 160 employees in ten locations in Hilo, Kea`au Ka`u and Pahoa. With over 18,000 patients served in 2012. Learn more about Bay Clinic, Inc. at www.bayclinic.org.

HAWAI`I COUNTY HAS SUBMITTED questions to the state Department of Business and Economic Development regarding the proposed contract being considered by the Public Utilities Commission for `Aina Koa Pono to grow feedstock and refine biofuel in Ka`u and sell it to Hawaiian Electric Co. and Hawai`i Electric Light Co.
     Hawai`i County asks for more information about DBEDT’s testimony that “the Contract can provide a type of hedge – a financial hedge by reducing ratepayers’ exposure to price volatility, and a physical hedge because the locally produced biodiesel reduces ratepayers’ exposure to man-made, natural, or other disturbances that can affect the supply chain of Hawai`i’s imported fuels.” 
Richard Lim, Director of DBEDT

     Hawai`i County asks DBEDT to “describe the type of man-made, natural or other disturbance that can affect the supply chain of Hawai`i’s imported fuels. In the event of such a disturbance, please describe the probability that such an event would also disrupt a supply chain of locally sourced fuels. In the event of such an event that would affect the supply chain of Hawai`i’s imported fuels, what would be the similar effect on supply chains for other imported goods that are perhaps even more important to the survival and well-being of Hawai`i’s citizens – specifically, food or medical supplies?
     “If high, fixed long-term prices benefit consumers by providing a hedge against price volatility, then does DBEDT believe the same logic should be applied to all commodities that are considered important or essential to the well-being of Hawai`i’s citizens and businesses, and to protect against disturbances to import supply chains?
     “Would DBEDT propose public policy to uniformly eliminate price volatility by fixing prices of essential items (say, food and medical supplies) at the highest possible levels conceivable under forecast conditions?
     “Would DBEDT support such a policy if (for example) it also “jump- started” additional on-islands food production? If so, would such production have to be on each island, as a catastrophe (for example, tsunami) that wipes out import supply chains is likely to also wipe out harbors for inter-island commerce? If so, would DBEDT support extending such a “food security” and “food price stabilization” policy to food items not currently produced extensively or at all on the islands (wheat, corn, stone fruits, apples, almonds, poultry, etc.)?”
     DBEDT director Richard C. Lim is one of the founding partners of Sennet Capital, which lists the `Aina Koa Pono project as one of its “transactions.” See www.sennetcapital.com.
     Hawai`i County’s and other parties’ information requests in the Public Utilities case are available at puc.hawaii.gov. Responses to the questions are due Friday, May 10.

HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK invites everyone to join special hikes and programs offered at the park during National Park Week, April 20 – 28. Entrance fees are waived next Monday through Friday, April 22 – 26.
This year’s theme, “Did You Know,” provides a fun way to get to know the park. For example, did you know that Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park is 520 square miles, nearly as large as the entire island of O`ahu (597 square miles)?
     For the special, free programs during National Park Week, participants should wear sturdy hiking shoes and long pants and bring a hat, raingear, day pack, snacks and water. 
Park Ranger Adrian Boone will lead a special trek to the Pu`uloa Petroblyphs during
National Park Week on April 25. Photo by Jay Robinson of National Park Service
     Volunteer ranger Charlene Meyers leads the Kilauea Iki Crater Hike, an invigorating four-mile, three-hour hike through the rain forest and onto the crater floor of Kilauea Iki on Tuesday, April 23 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. She discusses how the 1959 eruption forever changed this landscape.
 Participants meet at Kilauea Iki Overlook Parking lot on Crater Rim Drive.
     Amazing Mauna Ulu Hike on Wednesday, April 24 at 11 a.m. and again at 1 p.m. explores volcanic features like fissures and lava trees that were formed during the 1969-74 Mauna Ulu eruption. Volunteer ranger Noel Eberz leads the one-mile, one-hour round-trip hikes and highlights the process of plant survival on this harsh lava landscape.
 Participants meet at the Mauna Ulu parking lot, four miles down Chain of Craters Road
     On the Pu`uloa Petroglyphs Hike Thursday, April 25 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., park ranger Adrian Boone guides a two-hour, 1.5-mile round-trip trek across ancient lava flows to the largest petroglyph field in Hawai`i. Participants discover the meanings inherent in these rock carvings and gather a greater understanding of the native people who created them.
 Meet at Pu`uloa Petroglyphs parking area, near the end of Chain of Craters Road (a 45-minute drive from the park entrance).

     National Park Service Volunteer Day is Saturday, April 27. From 9 a.m. to noon, hikers help save Hawai`i’s native rainforest when they join forces with volunteers Jane and Paul Field to remove Himalayan ginger, faya, strawberry guava and other invasive non-native plants that threaten the native understory alongside Halema`uma`u Trail. Tools are provided. Meet at Kilauea Visitor Center.

     There are also regularly scheduled programs in the park and at the Kahuku Unit, during National Park Week. For a complete listing, see nps.gov/havo. In addition, Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park has special programs during National Park Week. See fhvnp.org. 
Ka`u Coffee Growers Co-op and MIss Ka`u Coffee contenders, in the recent Merrie
Monarch Parade, get ready for their Friday, April 26 pageant. Photo by Julia Neal

KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL is gearing up with the return of farmers, roasters and marketers from an annual international convention where Ka`u coffee won awards placing in top ten in the world. More than a week of Ka`u Coffee Festival events begins with the Miss Ka`u Coffee Pageant on Friday, April 26 at Ka`u Coffee Mill. With $10 tickets. The Simply Elegant 2nd Annual Ka`u Farmers Table takes place at Kalaekilohana on Saturday, April 27 – reservations required. Triple C. Recipe Contest on Sunday, April 28 is at Ka`u Coffee Mill beginning at 2 p.m. Register to compete.
     The Ka`u Mountain Water System Hike is Wednesday, May 1 starting at the coffee mill. Coffee & Cattle Day with lunch offers a tour of `Aikane Plantation Coffee Farm on Friday, May 3. Reservations required. Also on Friday, May 3 is Ka`u Star Gazing at Makanau Mountain. Reservations required.
     The Ka`u Coffee Festival Ho`olaulea on Saturday, May 4 includes a day of free music, hula, Ka`u Coffee tasting, educational displays with vendors of coffee food and artwork at Pahala Community Center. Ka`u Coffee College is a day of education on Sunday, May 5 from 9 a.m. at Pahala Community Center. See more at  www.kaucoffeefest.com

IN SPORTS, KA`U HIGH’S Trojan Girls Softball team lost 5-14 against the Waiakea Worriors yesterday at Pahala ballfield. Ka`u Trojans racked up six hits. Cierra Kaopua scored a home run in the fourth inning.