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, January 31, 2015

Ka`u News Briefs Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015

Last night was Senior Night for Ka`u High boys soccer team, seniors' final opportunity to play on their home field. Photo by Dave Berry
A COMMUNITY-BASED ERADICATION EFFORT for Little Fire Ants in Na`alehu will be held on Thursday, Feb. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at Na`alehu Community Center. The formal presentation will be followed by a question and answer session.
      The Hawai`i Ant Lab reminds residents that “Little Fire Ants are ubiquitous and well-established on the windward side of the Big Island of Hawai‘i.” Scattered populations live along the west coast from Kailua-Kona to Captain Cook, and a small, isolated outbreak has been detected in Na`alehu. “This approximately 6.4 acre infestation is an ideal candidate for spot-eradication because the community is small and geographically separate from other infested areas. The infested area includes several private homes, a portion of Na`alehu Park, the 76 Gas Station, commercial properties and the Ka`u Family Health Center,” the statement said.
Little Fire Ants, recently detected in Na`alehu, are considered one of the world's
worst invasive species. Photo from Hawai`i Department of Agriculture
      The county Department of Parks & Recreation is treating Na`alehu Community Park. “In order to get rid of this invasive ant species, the community needs to treat on their private properties also,” warned the Fire Ant Lab. The Hawai‘i Ant Lab, Big Island Invasive Species Committee and The Nature Conservancy are teaming up to train the Na`alehu community on treatment methods. The project team will work in collaboration with the community to engage the community, garner broad support and cooperation; develop a community action plan that includes treatment, monitoring and ongoing quarantine procedures; develop and deliver training, supplies and provide technical input; and monitor outcomes, report and promote as a demonstration to other communities.
      “In order for the community-based eradication to be a success, it is vital that everyone in the community participate in treatment efforts. If you are not within the treatment area, we still encourage your participation at the Public Informational Meeting and vigilance for new introductions of Little Fire Ants,” the Ant Lab statement recommended.
      For more information, contact Hawai`i Ant Lab, 16 East Lanikaula Street, Hilo, HI 96720. Call 315-5656 or email heather.forester@littlefireants.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Jim Alberts, of HECO
HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC COMPANIES, INCLUDING Hawai`i Electric Light Company, are launching Integrated Interconnection Queues, an online tool allowing customers and developers to see the status and progress of planned renewable generation projects, including customer-sited rooftop solar as well as mid-sized and utility-scale wind and solar projects. 
      The IIQ for each company will show an application’s status relative to other projects proposed on the neighborhood circuit and on the islandwide electrical system. The list includes projects at every stage of the interconnection process, including applications approved for interconnection but not yet installed by the customer.
      “Hawai`i is experiencing unprecedented growth in rooftop solar and utility-scale solar, wind and other renewable generation,” said Jim Alberts, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president of customer service. “We know we need an improved interconnection process – we owe it to our customers. The goal for this Integrated Interconnection Queues is to provide fair and equitable treatment for all non-utility energy providers, including homeowners and developers.”
      Previously, an applicant or developer had no way to know where a project stood in line. The IIQ includes Net Energy Metering, Feed-in Tariff, Standard Interconnection Agreement, Schedule Q and Purchase Power Agreements that seek to interconnect on the distribution (also called “neighborhood circuit”) level.
      Information will be updated monthly. A project’s position in the queue will change as applicants progress through the review process and others move in and out of the IIQ.
      Complete instructions, including FAQs, are available at www.hawaiielectriclight.com/IIQ.
      Earlier this month, HECO proposed to the Hawai`i Public Utilities Commission a plan to increase distributed generation, primarily residential rooftop solar, in a way it contended is safe, sustainable and fair for all customers. The proposal is part of the utility’s plan to triple the amount of distributed solar power and increase renewable energy to more than 65 percent by 2030. 
      At the end of Oct. 2014, Hawaiian Electric announced a plan to clear the backlog of residential rooftop solar projects awaiting approval as of that date, provided those projects meet certain technical standards. The plan is to process 90 percent of those projects by April 2015 and the remainder, which may require additional circuit upgrades, by December 2015.
      For more information, visit www.hawaiianelectric.com/nem.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Sen. Brian Schatz
U.S. SEN. BRIAN SCHATZ HAS BEEN NAMED to serve on five key Senate Appropriations Subcommittees: Defense; Military Construction and Veterans Affairs; Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education; Transportation, Housing and Urban Development; and Legislative Branch. 
      “I am grateful to Chairman Cochran and Vice Chairwoman Mikulski for the opportunity to help shape the Department of Defense’s priorities, especially as it relates to the Asia-Pacific region,” Schatz said. “These are challenging times, and we operate in a difficult budget environment, but this puts me in a position to help Hawai`i move forward.”

      On the Subcommittee on Defense, Schatz will have an opportunity to ensure that DoD is aligning its limited resources appropriately to support national defense needs, including protecting critical military capabilities in Hawai`i. In addition, the subcommittee presents an opportunity to help DoD identify opportunities to accomplish its objectives by working with partners and allies; and supporting DoD’s investments in nontraditional defense programs – such as alternative energy, climate resilience and infectious diseases research – that will pay dividends to national defense in the future.

      As a member of the Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, Schatz has an opportunity to demonstrate that development of training ranges and other essential military facilities can be done in balance with local cultural and environmental needs, all while ensuring obligations to support veterans who have made sacrifices to the nation.

      Hawai`i’s representation on the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee is valuable in sustaining past gains and continuing to address the significant education and health disparities faced by the Native Hawaiian community, given the geographical, cultural and financial barriers that prevent Native Hawaiians from accessing existing health services. It will also help represent the needs of rural and low-income communities as well as underserved populations living in island communities and isolated parts of the country.
      Hawai`i depends on federal transportation funding to build and maintain the infrastructure it needs to grow the economy and connect its communities. With the Department of Transportation’s help, Hawai`i will complete the state’s first light rail project, invest in needed highway improvements, provide access to goods with port improvements and make communities more walkable.
Today is Afternoon Jazz at Pahala Plantation House.
      Agencies and offices that provide for safety and functionality for those who work within and visit the United States Capitol Complex are funded in the Legislative Branch Appropriations bill. Offices such as the United States Capitol Police and Senate Sergeant at Arms oversee and execute safety functions, while agencies like the Library of Congress, Government Accountability Office and Congressional Budget Office facilitate the work of the legislative branch and provide public access to the documents elected officials use every day to help inform decisions in their official capacity.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

MUSICIANS COME TO PAHALA TODAY for Afternoon Jazz at Pahala Plantation House today from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. The fundraiser for the Brass Band Afterschool Project at Ka`u Middle School is supported by Volcano Art Center. Musicians include Jr. Volcano Choy on trumpet, Brian McCree on acoustic bass, Bruce David on drums and vocalist Betsy Curtis. Keoki Kahumoku and the Ka`u youth `ukulele players will also perform.
      Suggested donation is $15.

KA`U HIGH’S BOYS SOCCER TEAM CELEBRATED Senior Night yesterday, hosting Parker. The close match ended with a score of Ka`u 3, Parker 4.
      David Pillette scores two goals, and Thanachit Khofaklang 
scored one for the Trojans.