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.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Friday, Jan. 13, 2017

Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park celebrates 20 years of service this year, including the training of
many Ka`u High School students in the Youth Ranger Program.  See more below. Image by Susan Manley
HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK'S YOUTH RANGER PROGRAM starts Feb. 1. The annual training over  the years has involved many Ka`u High School students, leading to employment at the park and other career advancement as well as educational opportunities. For the 2017 training, "We are excited to work with 75 youth from around the island. This program provides great opportunity for Hawai`i Island's underserved youth population," said Elizabeth Fien, Executive Director of Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, which supports the program . She also noted that all donations directed to the program go directly to youth stipend payment. 
Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park celebrates 20 years of service in 2017, including
the Youth Ranger Program, which has involved many Ka`u High School students.
Photo from Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park
     In 2017, Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park celebrates its 20th anniversary. The Executive Director reviewed the progress in a New Year's letter to members. Fien wrote that the organization was founded in 1997 as Na Hoaloha O `Ainahou - the Friends of `Ainahou - the historic ranch within Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. "In 1995 with the help of our founding members, the `Ainahou Ranch House and its ground were listed on the National Register of Historic Places. From this effort, The Friends of  `Ainahou was formed."
     Volunteers cleared about ten acres of the ranch, which was developed in the 1940s by buisnessman and horticulturalist Herbert C. Shipman, a descendant of one of Hawai`i's oldest missionary families. 
     "As our mission and focus expanded beyond `Ainahou, wrote Fien, "we changed names to become the Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park in 2002." 
     Founding members included Alana McKinney, Julie Williams, Diane Gentry, Russell Kukubun and Roberta Baker. 
     The organization invites donations and new members and is planning an annual meeting in March, as well as a 20-year celebration later in 2017. Upcoming events include a Forest Restoration Project on Friday, Jan. 20 and a Sunday Walk in the Park, Exploring Mauna Ulu on Sunday, Feb. 12.  See more at www.fhvnp.org
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STOP ARMING TERRORISTS was the message to the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard who delivered a speech on the House floor today. Her bipartisan Stop Arming Terrorists Act (H.R.258), legislation would prohibit the U.S. government from using American taxpayer dollars to provide funding, weapons, training, and intelligence support to groups like the Levant Front, Fursan al Ha and other allies of Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, al-Qaeda and ISIS, or to countries providing direct or indirect support to those groups.
     She also promoted the legislation on FOX News on Friday evening, interviewed on Tucker Carlson Tonight, and said that President-elect Donald Trump listened to her point of view on arming terrorists when she met with him in late November at Trump Tower.
Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard promoted her bill against regime change on Fox News
today, interviewed by Tucker Carlson. She also talked about her late November meeting
with President-elect Donald Trump. Photo from Fox News
     In a written statement, Gabbard said, “The American people have felt directly the cost of our nation's interventionist wars—costs borne by our nation's sons and daughters who have served, and by communities and people in every part of this country. We have spent trillions of dollars on regime change wars in the Middle East while communities like mine in Hawaiʻi face a severe lack of affordable housing, aging infrastructure, the need to invest in education, health care, and so much more. 
     “Our limited resources should go toward rebuilding our communities here at home, not fueling more counterproductive regime change wars abroad. I have introduced the Stop Arming Terrorist Act, legislation that would stop our government from using taxpayer dollars to directly or indirectly support groups who are allied with and supporting terrorist groups like ISIS and al Qaeda in their war to overthrow the Syrian government. The fact that our resources are being used to strengthen the very terrorist groups we should be focused on defeating should alarm every American. I urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan legislation and stop this madness.” 
    The legislation would prohibit U.S. government funds from being used to support al-Qaeda, ISIS or other terrorist groups. In the same way that Congress passed the Boland Amendment to prohibit the funding and support to CIA backed-Nicaraguan Contras during the 1980’s, her bill aims to stop CIA or other Federal government activities in places like Syria by ensuring U.S. funds are not used to support al-Qaeda, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, ISIS, or other terrorist groups working with them. It would also prohibit the Federal government from funding assistance to countries that are directly or indirectly supporting those terrorist groups. 
     Gabbard stated that the bill achieves this by: "Making it illegal for any U.S. Federal government funds to be used to provide assistance covered in this bill to terrorists. The assistance covered includes weapons, munitions, weapons platforms, intelligence, logistics, training, and cash; making it illegal for the U.S. government to provide assistance covered in the bill to any nation that has given or continues to give such assistance to terrorists; requiring the Director of National Intelligence to determine the individual and groups that should be considered terrorists, for the purposes of this bill, by determining: (a) the individuals and groups that are associated with, affiliated with, adherents to or cooperating with al-Qaeda, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, or ISIS; (b) the countries that are providing assistance covered in this bill to those individuals or groups;  requiring the DNI to review and update the list of countries and groups to which assistance is prohibited every six months, in consultation with the House Foreign Affairs and Armed Services Committees, as well as the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; and requiring the DNI to brief Congress on the determinations." 
See the Video of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s speech.
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Without objecting to Gen.Jame  Mattis himself, Rep. Tulsi
Gabbard objected to what she called the "circumventing
of the democratic process. " 
AN ATTEMPT TO ERODE CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT OF CIVILIAN CONTROL OF THE MILITARY, as Rep. Tulsi Gabbard described it, passed the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday. Gabbard said the bill would change the legal requirement for retired military officers to serve as Secretary of Defense and that it "was pushed through the House without allowing the House Armed Services Committee to hold a hearing with Secretary of Defense nominee Gen. Mattis before holding a vote on the floor."
      Gabbard's statement on the matter: “My opposition to this legislation lies solely in the fact that Congressional leadership and the incoming Administration circumvented the democratic process by not allowing Members of Congress to question Gen. (James) Mattis before voting to change the law that would allow him to serve as Secretary of Defense. Congress must be able to exercise its authority and responsibility to represent each of our constituents in the decisions we make and the laws that we pass. As a co-equal branch of government, we cannot continue to allow the Executive Branch to circumvent Congress.”
      U.S. law prohibits the appointment of former military officers within seven years of relief from active duty to the position of Secretary of Defense. S.84 would provide an exemption to the law for the first time since 1950, Gabbard pointed out.
       Gabbard contended that earlier this week that the incoming Administration and Congressional leadership broke precedent and circumvented the democratic process in considering the legislation by: "Refusing to allow President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Defense, General Mattis, to appear before the House Armed Services Committee as it considered the legislation; refusing to follow legal precedent by naming the nominee in the legislation itself, which would ensure the exemption is used solely for the intended nominee; and failing to exempt the nominee from the Uniform Code of Military Justice in the legislation, should he be confirmed as Secretary of Defense." 
     The legislation that Gabbard opposed passed the Senate Thursday, and passed the House Friday by a vote of 268-151.
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PROTECTING VICTIMS OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING is one of the goals of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard during the 115th Congress. She joined Republican and Democratic Senators and House members, reintroducing the Trafficking Survivors Relief Act on Wednesday. The bipartisan legislation would create a process for victims of human trafficking to request relief from non-violent federal crimes committed as a direct result of human trafficking.
Ho`ola Na Pua volunteers, who help educate girls and boys to avoid
situations that could involve them in trafficking and help with the healing
when they have bcome victims. Photo from Ho`ola Na Pua
     Jessica Munoz, President and founder of Ho'ola Na Pua, which tackles the problem in Hawai`i, said: “Because of the complexities of the criminal activity around trafficking, victims are put into situations where they may be forced to engage in other criminal acts due to their abuser. Even though they are victims of human trafficking, under current mandates, their 'criminal history' can make it very difficult for them to recover and reintegrate back into society. The Trafficking Survivors Relief Act is an important key to opening the door of freedom, helping to erase the past, and empower life recovery and forward movement for the most marginalized and vulnerable population in our communities.”
     Said Gabbard, “Tens of thousands of men, women, and children are victims of human trafficking each year. Too often, they are charged as criminals, thrown in prison, and shackled with a criminal record the rest of their lives instead of being free to get the care and assistance they need. The Trafficking Survivors Relief Act will empower human trafficking victims to escape the chains of their past and move forward with their lives."
     Dr. Tin Myaing Thein, Executive Director of the Pacific Gateway Center, which offers services that help rebuild the lives of human trafficking survivors, said, "We believe the Trafficking Survivors Relief Act will support these uprooted individuals to reclaim dignified lives."
    The Trafficking Survivors Relief Act would allow survivors of human trafficking to provide supporting documentation in order to get their non-violent criminal records vacated. These documents can include:

     Certified criminal or immigration court proceedings or law enforcement records demonstrating that the individual was a victim of trafficking at the time they were charged with the trafficking-related offense(s);

Many immigrants and refugees served by Pacific Gateway Center on the
Big Island and other Hawaiian Islands are victims of sex trafficking. 
     Testimony or sworn statement from a trained professional staff member of a victim services organization, an attorney, member of the clergy, a health care professional, a therapist, or other professional from whom the person has sought assistance in addressing the trauma associated with being a victim of trafficking;
     An affidavit or sworn testimony of the movant indicating that they were a victim of human trafficking at the time of their arrest and that they engaged in or were otherwise accused of engaging in criminal activities as a direct result of being a victim of human trafficking.
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KA`U HIGH GIRLS BASKETBALL sits in a three way tie for second in Division II of Big Island Interscholastic Federation competition. On Thursday evening, against Hilo, top Trojan scorer was Alysha Gustafson-Savella with 11 baskets, followed by Reisha Jara with seven. Hilo won 65-24 in varsity competition. Hilo also won in JV 50-28.

PANCAKE BREAKFAST, Saturday, Jan. 14, 8 a.m. - 11. a.m., Ocean View Community Center. 939-7033.

BIRTH OF KAHUKU hike, Saturday, Jan. 14 hike from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m., Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free.

BANYAN DRIVE ART STROLL is Saturday, Jan. 14 from noon to 6 p.m.

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY will be celebrated in Kona and Hilo. In Kona, the 36th Anniversary Birthday Commemoration of the civil rights leader will be Sunday, Jan. 15 from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Old Kona Airport Beach Park, Makaeo Pavillion. Art, songs, music by local schools and the community will be featured. In Hilo, it will take place Monday, Jan. 16 at the recently rernovated Mo`oheau Bandstand from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. with performers, speakers and artists commemorating MLK.

TRAINING ON HOW TO USE THE AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR donated Hilo Medical Center Foundation to Ocean View Community Association will be held on Saturday, Feb. 4 at Ocean View Community Center. CPR chest compressions will also be taught. The training begins at 10:30 a.m. Depending on the number of attendees, the training is expected to last until about noon.