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.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013

Miloli`i `Opelu Project participants prepare vegetable palu, food for `opelu. Photo from Kaiali`i Kahele
THE KA`U SCENIC BYWAY COMMITTEE has completed its first physical improvement – the installation of informative wayside signs at the Scenic Point near Hwy 11 mile marker 75, just south of Ocean View.
      One sign tells the story behind the scenery, such as the scarp of the Pali o Kulani, which follows the Southwest Rift Zone of Mauna Loa. There is also reference to some local history.
      The second sign describes how plant life regenerates on fresh lava and draws attention to the contrast between older, brown, vegetated lava and the more barren, newer, black lava.
      Majority funding for the signs came from the Hawai`i Tourism Authority’s Natural Resources program, with matching funding from Ka`u Chamber of Commerce.
      In the coming weeks, the committee’s plans for the byway will be presented to the public with input sought for possible modifications. The plans include proposals for six more turnouts at scenic points along the byway and for kiosks in each of Ka`u’s main population centers with information on local facilities. There will be a blessing of the signs sometime in the near future.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

NEEDS FOR HOUSING AND OTHER COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE were discussed yesterday when three county representatives came to Ka`u for a public hearing on the county’s plan for federal Community Development Block Grant money. Government agencies and 501-C-3 community organizations can apply for funding, with applications due in January.
      Funding possibilities discussed were for rehabilitating existing housing, funding to help residents of old plantation homes in Na`alehu and Pahala hook up to planned sewage lines for both communities, energy-efficient and environmentally responsible lighting for county ballparks in Ka`u and senior center programs for Volcano Village. Individual programs can help qualifying families with loans to upgrade electrical systems or fix leaky roofs, which, in some situations, can be considered emergencies for housing safety. High priorities for Hawai`i County include affordable housing for households earning less than 80 percent of median income, with a family of four qualifying if earning less than $55,850 a year. Activities to produce new affordable housing such as bringing in water, streets and completing planning and environmental assessments can qualify. Fire, police and environmental activities that protect the health and safety of resident are also high priorities. Childcare, youth and senior centers and centers for persons with disabilities can qualify, as well as facilities for the homeless.
      For more information, contact ohcdcdbg@co.hawaii.hi.us or see co.hawaii.hi.us. Call 961-8379.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

BANS ON GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS AND FRACKING are being heard by Hawai`i County Council this week. A special meeting of Hawai`i County Council to consider the anti-GMO bill takes place at 4 p.m. today at West Hawai`i Civic Center in Kona.
Lincoln Ashida
      Possible legal blocks to the proposed ban on GMOs are becoming fewer. Hawai`i attorney general’s office does not plan to challenge a ban on GMOs if it is adopted by Hawai`i County Council, according to a story in Hawai`i Tribune-Herald. Anne Lopez, speaking for the attorney general’s office, told reporter Tom Callis, “We have not analyzed it to come up with a legal opinion.”
      County corporation counsel Lincoln Ashida told Callis that when he asked the attorney general to comment on the subject a few months ago, he was told it would not be providing an opinion. Ashida also said he has not found any reason the county can’t legally adopt or enforce the proposed ban. “At present, we’re unable to find any legal impediments such as state pre-emption, especially in light of the fact the attorney general has refused to weigh in,” he said.
      Ashida also said the lack of a challenge to GMO taro and coffee bans provides more reassurance to anti-GMO supporters.
      See hawaiitribune-herald.com.
      Hawai`i County Council considers Ka`u Council member Brenda Ford’s bill banning fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, at its regular meeting tomorrow at West Hawai`i Civic Center in Kona. The bill passed its first reading in Council with seven ayes and two members absent.
      Ka`u residents can participate via videoconferencing from Ocean View Community Center.
      Agendas are available at hawaiicounty.gov.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Kailiawa coffee was purchased by Brad Wood, of Roast, Inc. in Nashville,
who launched a promotion in Tennessee for Ka`u Coffee. The coffee was
provided to Grounds for Health in 2011 by Ka`u Coffee Mill.
Photo by Julia Neal
TODAY IS INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR RURAL WOMEN, recognizing “the critical role and contribution of rural women, including indigenous women, in enhancing agricultural and rural development, improving food security and eradicating rural poverty.” 
      According to United Nations’ Women website, “rural women are key agents for development. They play a catalytic role toward achievement of transformational economic, environmental and social changes required for sustainable development. But limited access to credit, health care and education are among the many challenges they face. These are further aggravated by the global food and economic crises and climate change. Empowering them is essential, not only for the well-being of individuals, families and rural communities, but also for overall economic productivity, given women’s large presence in the agricultural workforce worldwide.”  
      One organization commemorating the day is Grounds for Health, which partners with coffee-growing communities worldwide to improve the health of rural women, who make up the majority of the workforce for much of the field work, harvesting and sorting of coffee. “We also work in these areas because there is a strong link between the health of women and the overall health of the coffee industry,” said Justin Mool, of Grounds for Health.
      Grounds for Health raises fund for its female coffee workers’ health care projects through auctions of regional coffees. Bull Kailiawa’s Ka`u Coffee brought $40.20 a pound at the organization’s 2011 auction.
      Ka`u’s large population of Marshallese women is active in the agricultural industry.
      See more at unwomen.org and groundsforhealth.org.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Kukulu Kuahuia, Craig Carvalho, Meha Taetuna and Willy Kaupiko are
`opelu practitioners participating in the Miloli`i `Opelu Project.
Photo from Kaiali`i Kahele
MILOLI`I `OPELU PROJECT OPENED `OPELU SEASON this past weekend. The project’s mission, according to Pa`a Pono Miloli`i, is “to significantly enhance the marine and coastal knowledge base and stewardship action of Miloli`i’s population of K-12 students. Through preserving and perpetuating the iconic `opelu traditional fishing practices that the waters off Miloli`i are famous for, students blend traditional Hawaiian fishing education with contemporary science and marine management and stewardship practices.” 
      Pa`a Pono Miloli`i is a 501-C-3 organization administering the two-year program through a grant from National Oceanic & Atmospheric Association’s Bay Watershed Education and Training program and Office of Hawaiian Affairs’ Perpetuating Hawaiian Culture program.
      To learn for about the project, contact Kaimi Kaupiko at 937-1310.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

KA`U’S ASPIRING YOUNG ARTISTS between the ages of 13 and 22 are invited to enter the Earth Patriot Graphic Art Competition. The goals of the competition are to increase knowledge and understanding about the concepts of sustainability and biodiversity and to promote environmental awareness and action by youth in Hawai`i. The winner of the competition receives a $100 cash prize and products from Earth Patriot Productions. 
      For more information about the competition, call Howard Shapiro at 808-985-8725, email artpeace@hawaiiantel.net, or see earthpatriotproductions.com.
      To comment on or “like” this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.  

BEN KA`ILI CONCERT SCHEDULED for tomorrow at Kilauea Visitor Center in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park has been cancelled due to the continuing federal government shutdown.

Adria Medeiros
KA`U HIGH & PAHALA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL holds a Community Walkthrough Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. The purpose is to build partnerships with the community and to allow community members to experience campus and classroom life. “There is a lot to celebrate here at our school, and we want to share that with our community,” said vice principal Adria Medeiros. 
      Call 313-4100 to RSVP.

KA`U AG WATER COOPERATIVE DISTRICT meets Thursday at 4 p.m. at Royal Hawaiian Orchards field office in Pahala. For more information, call Jeff McCall at 928-6456.