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.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Monday, Feb. 13, 2017

There is no sign of a lava delta rebuilding as lava continues to spill into the ocean from the 61g lava flow near Kamokuna. Today,
a new bill was introduced to the U.S. Senate to improve early warning and monitoring capabilities at volcano observatories around the
 country, including the first in the nation, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. See Story below. Photo from USGS
A CALL TO ACTION CAMPAIGN CONCERNING THE IMPACT OF DRUGS, DOMESTIC ABUSE AND SEXUAL VIOLENCE is the headline of Ka`u Rural Health Community Association, Inc.'s 19th Annual Rural Health Conference set for Friday, March 17 at Pahala Community Center.
     KRHCAI's founder Jessie Marques said today that the meeting has drawn sponsorships and presentations by the state Department of Health Maternal & Child Health Branch;  the Sexual Prevention Program of the Family Health Services Division; the Office of Primary Care & Rural Health; Hawai`i Medical Services Association and Hawai`i Island Rural Health Association.
     All Ka`u residents are invited. Preregister by calling 928-0101 by Monday March 6.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar     

VOLCANO VILLAGE GUN CONTROL ADVOCATE Ross Rammelmeyer is asking people to weigh in on legislation before the U.S. Senate on Tuesday that would roll back a rule that keeps guns out of the hands of mentally ill people who have been deemed by the Social Security Administration as unable to take care of their own affairs.
     Rammelmeyer points to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence which calls on people to email Senators "and tell them to vote No on Senate Joint Resolution 14 and keep  guns out of the hands of people who are a danger to themselves or others! Don't let the gun lobby's influence rollback life-saving measures of the Brady background checks that protect all Americans."
  "Between 6,000 and 18,000 persons with mental illness kill themselves with guns every year.     Approximately half of all mass murders are people with mental illness. And those are just the fatalities. Many more are injured. The Senate resolution takes 75,000 seriously mentally ill who would likely be put in the NICS gun background check system" of the list, writes  DJ Jaffee, Executive Director of Mental Illness Policy Org., a non-partisan think tank.
     He points out that Pres. Donald Trump's policy platform states, “Too many states are failing to put criminal and mental health records into the (gun background check) system — and it should go without saying that a system’s only going to be as effective as the records that are put into it. What we need to do is fix the system we have and make it work as intended.”

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar     

EARLY WARNING AND VOLCANO MONITORING improvements are the goals of a new bill in congress, introduced today by Ka`u's Sen. Mazie Hirono, Washington state Sen. Maria Cantwell and Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski. The three said in their announcement that the aim is to better develop "warning capabilities that help keep communities and travelers safe."
Lava hitting the ocean is causing fist-sized
spatter to be thrown back on land, creating
danger to viewers. Photo from USGS
     Said Hirono, “For the past 34 years, we have experienced first-hand the threat of volcanic activity to our daily lives with the ongoing eruption at Kilauea. As recently as 2014, we had evacuations and damage to critical infrastructure and residences. This bipartisan bill is important as it updates and unifies the five volcano observatories across the nation and creates a grant program that will support critical monitoring research and technology development that will be used to save lives.”
     The bill, S. 346, would strengthen existing volcano monitoring systems, which include the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, Alaska Volcano Observatory, and the Cascades Volcano Observatory, and would unify them into a single connected system called the National Volcano Early Warning System. These observatories monitor, warn, and help protect citizens and travelers from volcanic activity, particularly from high-threat volcanoes. The bill would also create a Volcano Watch Office that would operate 24-hours a day, seven days a week, to provide continuous situational awareness of all active volcanoes in the U.S. and its territories.
     The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory located on the rim of Kilauea was the first volcano observatory in the United States and has been monitoring volcanoes, including the two most active, Kilauea and Mauna Loa, for more than a century. Additional and modern monitoring and science is needed to help protect communities living near these volcanoes, said Hirono.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar     

THE HIRE VETS ACT (H.R.244) passed the U.S. House of Representatives today by a vote of 409 to 1. It was introduced by Ka`u's Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and Rep. Paul Cook of California. The bipartisan legislation would incentivize employers to hire veterans, and recognize employers that provide a supportive work environment to retain veteran employees. The legislation now moves to the U.S. Senate.
     In a speech on the House floor Gabbard said today, “This is personal for us. This is about our brothers and sisters in uniform from different generations, who have been honored and thanked for their service in uniform, but unfortunately are often forgotten about when they lay that uniform down.
     “Most people aren’t aware that every single day, roughly 500 veterans are transitioning from military life to civilian life, joining the more than 2.9 million veterans who have returned home since 9/11 alone. Through their service and training, these are men and women who are highly trained, have experience leading and making decisions under pressure, acting and working well as a member of a team, and accomplishing the mission.
    “Data shows that veterans are civic assets in our communities. They have higher rates of voting, engaging with local governments and community organizations, participating actively in community service, and more.
     “Together, these qualities make our veterans especially valuable to employers, whether in private sector, the public sector, or the non-profit sector.
      “Unfortunately, returning to the civilian job market is not as easy as it should be. Veterans often face an unfriendly job market or an unfriendly culture that does not fully understand them and what they bring to the table. Many people don't understand that our veterans are not seeking pity or a handout—they are simply looking for an opportunity to continue to serve and to continue to contribute to our communities and our country.
     “This legislation is focused on encouraging employers to hire more veterans. We’ve seen different programs and initiatives in my home state of Hawaiʻi and in states across the country that focus on recruiting and retaining veterans, but the fact is there are still more than 400,000 unemployed veterans across the country. We need to do more."

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar     

TESTIMONY ON THE MAUNA KEA THIRTY-METER TELESCOPE will come from all quarters tomorrow and Wednesday at public hearings in Hilo. Many Native Hawaiians have testified, protested and plan to testify that the location on top of Mauna Kea is sacred and would be desecrated.
      An organization claiming to be the only Native Hawaiian group that will testify in favor of the telescope released a statement today. The group called PUEO - Perpetuating Unique Educational Opportunities - wrote: "Because so much press has focused on Native Hawaiians who are against science and technology on Mauna Kea, the PUEO board felt it was important to intervene and dispel the myth that all Native Hawaiians oppose the project. PUEO hopes to bring a vision of clarity and unity to the process through the perpetuation of unique educational opportunities."
Thirty Meter Telescope artist rendition. Image from TMT
   PUEO officers and directors expected to speak in favor of TMT include PUEO President Keahi Warfield, who is also executive director of the RISE Out of School Program and Keaukaha One Youth Development; PUEO Vice-President William H. Brown, President of the Panaewa-Hawaiian Homes Community Association; PUEO director Patrick Kahawaiola‘a, who is president of the Keaukaha-Hawaiian Homes Community Association; and Richard Ha, PUEO director and owner of Hamakua Springs Country Farms.
Richard Ha plans to testify in
suport of the Thirty Meter Telescope
      The contested case hearing is being held at the Grand Naniloa Hotel’s Crown Room in Hilo. It will also stream live at naleo.org.
     Accordomg tp PUEO's statement, the organization is "a non-profit dedicated to enhancing the educational opportunities of Hawai‘i’s youth and their communities. Its board is comprised of native Hawaiians from Hawaiian communities on Hawai‘i Island. PUEO seeks to provide and enhance opportunities for our children in terms of Hawaiian cultural traditions of exploration and learning. The group’s intent is based on a unifying vision of Hawaiian language, culture, science, technology and exploration."
    For more information about PUEO, see http://alohapueo.org/.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar     

Valentine’s Day Cards, Tuesday, Feb 14, 2 – 3 p.m., Kahuku Park. Ages 6 – 12. 929-9113

Valentine’s Day Buffet, Tue, Feb 14, 5 – 8 p.m., Kīlauea Military Camp’s Crater Rim Café in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Prime rib, lemon-buttered fish, vegetable stir-fry with tofu and more. $27.95 adult; $14.50 child (6-11 yrs old). Open to authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. 967-8356

The Hylaeus Project and the Newly Endangered Bees of Hawai‘i, Tue, Feb 14, 7 p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Natural historian Lisa Schonberg discusses seven species of the yellow-faced bees of Hawai‘i that became the first bees to ever be listed as endangered. Free; park entrance fees apply.

Ka`u Farm Bureau meeting, Wednesday, Feb. 15 at the auxiliary room at the new gymnasium in Pahala at 6 p.m. Election of new officers is planned for the meeting, said Ka`u Farm Bureau President Brenda Iokepa-Moses.

Lito Arkangel will be in concert on Wednesday, Feb. 15 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Kilaeua Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The entertainer and songwriter shares his original compositions and other Hawaiian favorites. He  hails from the former sugar plantation town of ‘Ōla‘a, now known as Kea‘au. His love for Hawaiian music started as a young keiki, turning pages for his tūtū wahine (grandmother) while she played piano, and from decades of backyard jam sessions. Arkangel has since established himself as a popular entertainer throughout Hawai‘i. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing Nā Leo Manu Heavenly Voices presentations. Free.