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 27, 2016

Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Ka`u Coffee growers and festival organizers urge everyone to Buy Local for a chance to win $1,000. See kaucoffeefest.com for details. Photo by Chris Cook
THE KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL is once again launching its Buy Local-It Matters promotion in partnership with the state Department of Agriculture. Ka`u Coffee farmers and supporters met last night to get ready for the May 13 - 22 festival and urge everyone to participate and build their opportunity to win $1,000.
      Festival organizer Chris Manfredi said, “This promotion is designed to drive customers to local businesses, where they can collect invoices, receipts or business cards and redeem them at our Ho`olaule`a on May 21 for chances to win valuable prizes. The more they collect, the more chances to win.” 
      See kaucoffeefest.com for a list of participating businesses. 
      See more Ka`u Coffee Festival updates in future Ka`u Calendar News Briefs.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

A HAWAI`I LAW THAT “PITS RURAL against urban communities” is how Life of the Land Executive Director Henry Curtis describes a law that allows large solar projects in rural neighborhoods zoned agricultural. Developers are using the law for a proposed project in Ocean View Ranchos and neighboring subdivisions.
Henry Curtis
      “The solar project pits rural residents against the alleged ʻpublic interest,’ Curtis said on his blog at ililani.media. “Renewable energy projects are good for the local construction industry. The projects generally reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Often, they keep money within the state that would have been used to import oil.
      “Developers often target large, open, undeveloped land in rural and agricultural areas. These areas are used to generate electricity necessary to power more urban areas.
      “At the southern end of the Big Island, a developer proposed segmenting a solar project into more than two dozen little projects. The proposals date from 2011 and have yet to be built. Combined, the projects require a new utility substation and electric lines crossing a state highway.
      “If combined into one package, the project would need to sign a Power Purchase Agreement with Hawai`i Electric Light Company, which would then need approval from the Public Utilities Commission.
      “By segmenting the project into separate ʻindependent’ proposals, each one can be approved through the existing Feed-in Tariff mechanism.
     “The Feed-in Tariff rate is much higher than recently signed Solar Power Purchase Agreements. Thus, the impact to Big Island ratepayers will be larger.”
      As an example, Curtis quoted from the PUC’s ruling regarding its PPA with Hu Honua, a power plant in Hamakua. “Because HELCO’s renewable energy generation output is in excess of the statutory 40 percent level, for any new generation project (renewable or fossil) or any significant change in the type of fuel supply proposed in the future, HELCO must demonstrate that the project provides cost reduction benefits to ratepayers, directly or indirectly, by improving and maximizing integration of additional lower cost renewable energy.”
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
U.S. REPRESENTATIVES TULSI GABBARD, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, advocated and worked to ensure provisions critical to Hawai`i were included in the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act draft. The full committee was scheduled to consider amendments to the Act today, when members will have the opportunity to further amend the bill before it comes before the full House of Representatives. 
      “Hawai`i’s strategic role in the Asia-Pacific region is recognized and reinforced in this year’s National Defense Authorization bill,” Gabbard said. “The bill includes funding for critical infrastructure and facilities in Hawai`i, strengthened missile defense capabilities against the threat posed by North Korea and improved protections for our environment. Also included is Talia’s Law, which we passed through the House earlier this year in order to protect military children from abuse. Unfortunately, there are some problem areas included within the bill, to include a continuation of harmful arbitrary sequestration cuts which negatively impact our service members, readiness and capabilities. I will be highlighting areas of concern in the committee markup tomorrow, in order to ensure that the national strategic military assets of Hawai`i, and of our country, are maintained and supported.”
      The bill includes $31 million for a National Guard combined support maintenance shop in Hilo to support ongoing training at Pohakuloa Training Area.
      It also calls for a Medal of Honor Review for Asian American and Native American Pacific Islanders. The Department of Defense will conduct comprehensive reviews of the service records of these war veterans to determine whether they should be awarded the Medal of Honor. Often times, these awards were not given due to discrimination.
            To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono
SEN. MAZIE HIRONO TOOK to the Senate floor to call for unanimous consent to confirm Hawai`i’s Clare Connors and other judicial nominees from courts across the country who have been waiting months, and in some cases over a year, for a floor vote. Sen. Mitch McConnell blocked Hirono’s request. Hirono also called on Senate Republicans to take up the nomination of Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court.
      “While my colleagues and I attempted to fulfill our duties as senators by voting to fill urgent vacancies on the federal bench, Senate Republicans continue to refuse to do their jobs, which delays justice from our district courts to the Supreme Court,” Hirono said. “Clare Connors was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on a bipartisan basis, but she and other qualified nominees are being kept in limbo by Republican inaction. I call upon my Republican colleagues to enable all of us to do our jobs and begin the advice and consent process, which we are required to do under the Constitution.”
      Earlier this month, Connors was unanimously approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawai`i created by Chief Judge Susan Oki Mollway’s retirement from active service.
      Although there are 79 federal judicial nominations pending, 28 of which are judicial emergencies, Senate Republicans called to stop the confirmation process in July. This would leave federal courts across the country, including the Supreme Court and Hawai`i’s U.S. District Court, understaffed for months, or even years.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

A KA`U MAN DIED AFTER POLICE responded to a report of a shooting. He has been identified as 46-year-old Jonathan Watson, of Ocean View.
      At 9:51 a.m. Monday, the Police Department received a 9-1-1 call from a man who said he had been shot. When officers arrived at a home on the 92-2600 block of Hukilau Drive in Ocean View, a man with a bandage on his left leg came out of the house in an aggressive manner and began fighting with the officers. The officers took him into custody.
      While some of the officers went into the house to check for possible suspects or victims, Watson tried to kick the officers who were with him, and then he became unresponsive.
      Police attempted cardiopulmonary resuscitation until Fire Department personnel arrived a few minutes later and took over unsuccessful efforts to revive him. Watson was later taken to Kona Community Hospital, where he was officially pronounced dead at 3:40 p.m.
      Police have requested an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death. The case is classified as a coroner’s inquest.
      The Police Department’s Area II Criminal Investigations Section will conduct an investigation into the death and circumstances leading to it, and the Office of Professional Standards will conduct an administrative investigation.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Mitch Roth
DOLLARAMA ACCEPTS DONATIONS for the event this Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Drop off items at Ocean View Community Center through Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Everything is $1 or less, including food and beverages. Funds raised go toward a new roof for the facility.

OCEAN VIEW’S CRIME WAVE is the topic of a meeting at Ocean View Community Center today at 6 p.m. Mike and Debbie Dubois invited Hawai`i County Prosecuting Attorney Mitch Roth and a Police Department representative to discuss crime with concerned citizens. The meeting follows break-ins and burglaries at Ocean View Community Center, area churches and Ocean View Market.

LEGAL AID SCHEDULED FOR TOMORROW at Ocean View Community Center has been cancelled.


See kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.html
and kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.pdf.
See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_April_2016.pdf.