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.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016

Dr. Cliff Kopp, seen descending from Volcano toward Pahala on a walk around Hawai`i Island to raise
awareness of homelessness, has died. See more below. Photo from Kopp's Facebook Page
OCEAN VIEW’S TEMPORARY TRANSFER STATION IS MOVING from its present park site to the location of the town’s future permanent transfer station, county officials told about 35 residents at a meeting last week. Called by Ocean View residents Mike and Debbie du Bois, the meeting was chaired by Ka`u’s recently re-elected County Council member Maile David. Environmental Management Director Bobby Jean Leithead-Todd and Solid Waste Director Greg Goodale presented updates and answered questions about the transfer station.
      Leithead-Todd and Goodale announced plans to move the temporary transfer station out of the park and to establish a new temporary transfer station on one acre at the 21-acre site where a permanent transfer station will be built. The temporary transfer station relocation may take about a year to accomplish, officials said. The county is in the process of hiring someone to do the siting, and then officials will get a contract out. When complete, the new temporary facility will be open one day a week, as is the current one, Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Residents line up to drop rubbish at Ocean View's temporary
transfer station yesterday. Photo by Peter & Ann Bosted
     Leithead-Todd said that the long-awaited permanent transfer station would occupy a nine-acre site in the center of the 21-acre parcel so that there would be a buffer of vacant land on the perimeter. It would be open three days a week, or more if the volume of rubbish warranted longer hours. She could not commit to what fire protection facilities would be available there but said the Fire Department requires that an on-site water tank be provided at all new transfer stations in case of fires at the sites.
      Leithead-Todd bemoaned the rise in cost that almost killed the project. She explained that the budget for the whole facility was $3 million, and originally the highway access was to cost $450,000. The state highway department now wants to charge the county $2 million for highway modifications that will comply with modern standards.
      “We are in process of contracting out a new traffic study to try and eliminate the right turn acceleration lane in order to reduce the cost of improvements in the state highway right of way,” Leithead-Todd said.
      State Rep. Richard Creagan has offered his services in negotiating better terms with the state highways department.
      Ocean View resident George Campbell commented that the meeting offered hope.
      “I would like to see the temporary transfer station moved out of the park a lot faster – a year seems to be a long delay,” he said. “As a member of the HOVE Road Maintenance Corp. board, I am very concerned about all these heavy vehicles tearing up our roads. The park needs to be a park again, and Ocean View needs a permanent transfer station.”
      Leithead-Todd said this would be her last meeting, as she is retiring before the end of the year, but would forward all her information and community requests to the new director, who will be appointed by Mayor-elect Harry Kim.
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Dick Hershberger, left, met with Dr. Cliff Kopp
on Hwy 11 at Punalu`u during one of Kopp's
many walks around the island.
Photo by Dick Hershberger
DR. CLIFF KOPP, KNOWN FOR TREKKING THROUGH KA`U on his walks around the island to raise awareness of homelessness, has died. His death followed Kopp recently finishing one in a series of walks. Cameron Miculka reported in West Hawai`i Today that Kopp suffered a stroke on Thursday and died the next day.
      Ocean View resident Dick Hershberger told The Ka`u Calendar that he worked with Kopp on many of the dentist’s community projects, including Fourth of July and Christmas parades. “It was difficult to say no to Cliff” when he asked for help, Hershberger said, “and everyone who did (help) did so joyfully.”
      Hershberger listed the many community projects Kopp spearheaded, including gardens at West Hawai`i Civic Center and St. Michael’s Church in Kona. The two were active members in Rotary Club, whose projects include drilling deep wells in developing countries to make potable water available.
      “The intent of what he was doing was always above himself – more for the good of the world,” Hershberger said. “May your streets be level and the wind behind you, Cliff!”
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“HOW SHOULD HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC COSTS BE ALLOCATED between ratepayers and shareholders,” Life of the Land Executive Director Henry Curtis asks at ililanimedia.blogspot.com.
      “The Hawaiian Electric Companies must submit their final Power Supply Improvement Plans to the state Public Utilities Commission on Dec. 1,” Curtis states. “These plans are supposed to reveal the utilities’ plans for the near, intermediate and long term.
      “One bone of contention is how willing, or unwilling, the utility has been, and is being, regarding the continued growth in Distributed Energy Resources in general and rooftop solar in particular.
      “The HECO Companies wrote in their April 1, 2016 Updated and Revised PSIP, ‘Throughout the process of creating our 2016 updated PSIPs, we have actively sought input from the Parties by thoroughly assessing their January 2016 submissions to the Commission and by engaging the Parties in a series of conferences, meetings, and one-on-one dialogs.’
Henry Curtis
      “Energy stakeholders have noted that seeking input, and actually incorporating input, are two quite different animals. There is a strong belief that the HECO Companies are resisting efforts to increasing on-site generation, and are not using computer models that actually are capable of optimizing Distributed Energy Resources.
      “Hawai`i Electric Light Company just filed its application for a 6.5 percent rate increase.
      “Initial review by some energy stakeholders question whether the 6.5 percent rate hike can be justified.
      “One issue is whether the utility has met the requirement of the Commission to contain and reduce costs.
      “Is a higher rate of return needed to pay for capital to finance projects, in light of the decoupling financial mechanism, which lowered risks to the utility? Since the utility is a safe investment choice, why should the cost to borrow funds increase?
      “A second issue is whether the utility should be fully compensated by ratepayers for fighting the use of rooftop solar?
      “HECO billed HELCO $954,700 for expenses related to hiring outside consultants. This included nearly $100,000 administrative costs for handling the outside costs.
        “The HELCO rate case documents give almost no information on why various outside contractors were hired. …
      “There is scant information about why these consultants were hired, what they are contributing to the utility in 2016, or how contracts with these firms are in the public interest, and therefore, why ratepayers and not shareholders should pay their tab.
      “There are statements in the rate case filing which assert that the utilities were able to get discounts from vendors. Thus, the utilities believe they met the Commission requirement that costs be contained. The utilities assert that details of these savings cannot be revealed to ratepayers. Rather, HELCO will share it with the Commission under the terms of a future confidential Protective Order.”
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Learn from the Public Access Room tomorrow.
HAWAI`I LEGISLATURE’S PUBLIC ACCESS ROOM, a division of the Legislative Reference Bureau, explains how to influence state laws tomorrow at Volcano Art Center in Volcano Village at 12 p.m. and Ocean View Community Center at 6 p.m. A drop-in office hour takes place before each event, where attendees can stop in with questions or pick up information.
      Contact PAR to register for the workshop, or just drop in. For more information, call 974-4000, ext. 7-0478, email par@capitol.hawaii.gov, or see lrbhawaii.org/par.

HAWAI`I POLICE DEPARTMENT MEETS with Ka`u residents Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center.

ARTISTS-IN-RESIDENCE BRYON YASUI AND NOREEN NAUGHTON speak about the creative process and how Hawai`i informs and inspires their art forms Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.
      $2 donations support park programs; park entrance fees apply.


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