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, May 27, 2017

Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Friday, May 26, 2017

Farm and mill tours will leave from Pahala Community Center on Saturday as  part of the all day
Ka`u Coffee Festival, which features foor, coffee tasing and a chance to meet the farmers and Miss
Ka`u Coffee Jami Beck and her court. Photo from Ka`u Coffee Mill
THE KA`U COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PLAN is moving forward with a public hearing in Hilo on Thursday, June 1. The County Planning Department issued a statement today with history and an update:
     "In October 2015, the CDP Steering Committee made final recommendations for CDP revisions and adoption. These revisions were based on the March-June 2015 public review and comment on the Draft CDP. In early 2016, a wide range of public agencies were invited to review and comment on the CDP. After reviewing agency comment, the Planning Director is recommending non-substantive revisions to the CDP. The April 2017 Kaʻū Community Development Plan reflects those recommendations. Links to the CDP and the Planning Director's recommendations are available at the project web site: www.kaucdp.info. "
Land Use Policy is one of the many maps, along with history, descriptions and zoning described in the
Ka`u Community Development Plan. See www.kaucdp.info

     Kaʻū CDP Steering Committee met on April 25 to review agency comment and the Planning Director's recommendations. Within 60 days of receiving the Planning Director's recommendation, the Windward Planning Commission will transmit the CDP with its recommendation to the County Council. On May 10, the Windward Planning Commission held the first Public Hearing regarding the Kaʻū CDP at Nāʻālehu Community Center. The second Public Hearing is scheduled for Thursday, June 1, 2017, 9 a.m. at the County of Hawai'i Aupuni Center Conference Room, 101 Pauahi Street, Hilo.
Discovery Harbour residents have been attending CDP meetings,
asking about the kind of development planned for the future.
See www.kaucdp.info
    "The purpose of these public hearings," says the county statement, is "to afford all interested persons reasonable opportunity to comment on the Kaʻū CDP and for the Commission to review the CDP and consider its recommendation to the County Council. All Planning Commission meetings and public hearings are open to the public, and public comment is welcome. A link to the June 1 Planning Commission meeting and hearing is available at the project web site: www.kaucdp.info.
     After the Windward Planning Commission makes its recommendations, final steps in the adoption process include: County Council public hearings and action; Mayor Harry Kim's signature, and an Action Committee appointed to guide CDP implementation."
     Discovery Harbour has been the community most represented at recent CDP meetings.

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EXTREME HIGH TIDES are flooding coastal areas as the King Tide event continues over the weekend. Hawai`i County Civil Defense is warning beachgoers to watch for unexpected inland flooding from extreme high tides, with high beach run-up, flooding and erosion.
     A statement from Civil Defense says there may be ”dangerous flooding conditions along all shores of Hawai`i Island from today through the Memorial Day weekend before gradually subsiding next week.

      "This extreme high tide, or king tide, will be in combination with dangerous high surf caused by large southerly swells. Be aware, due to the king tides and high surf, coastal areas, beaches, low-lying roads, boat ramps and harbors may be dangerously impacted especially during the high tide periods of the afternoon and late evening hours.
     "Because of these dangerous conditions, the following precautions should be taken: oceanfront residents, beachgoers and boat owners are advised to be on the alert for possible high and dangerous surf, strong currents, and beach flooding. As a precaution, you should consider canceling or suspending coastal water activities until potential dangerous hazards are over. As always, precautionary actions should be taken before nightfall."
      The County stated that road and beach closures may occur with out notice.

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PRESERVING ESSENTIAL AIR SERVICE, particularly to rural Hawai`i and Alaska, is the aim of a new bill introduced into the U.S. Senate following the release of Pres. Donald Trump’s budget request. Senators Mazie Hirono, of Hawai`i, and Republican Dan Sullivan, of Alaska, introduced the Keeping Our Commitment to Essential Air Service Act to prevent proposed budget cuts to air service for over 170 small community airports nationwide by reauthorizing program funding through 2022.
      “Serving approximately 20,000 people in Hawai`i last year alone, EAS provides reliable and affordable air transportation that is vital to the communities like Kalaupapa and Waimea. President Trump’s deep cuts to EAS would critically impact individuals in these communities who depend on air travel to get the health care they need and support local commerce and jobs," said Hirono. 
     “This is why I introduced this bill with Senator Sullivan-- helping to ensure our rural residents and their families continue to have access to air service which is their lifeline.”
Essential Air Service helps Molulele and other airlines reach
remote places in Hawai`i. Photo from Mokulele
    For Alaska, said Sullivan, “Aviation is absolutely essential to reaching the many remote communities across Alaska’s vast, geographically diverse territory. Essential Air Service provides the only means of transportation for residents in more than 60 Alaska communities—more than one-third of the communities served nationwide. There are no roads or highways connecting these Americans to the rest of the country—just an airstrip. We must work to maintain this strong and safe aviation network which supports jobs and economic opportunities for Americans living in rural areas.”
      Congress established EAS to ensure that small communities that were served by air carriers before deregulation of the industry in the 1970s would continue to receive scheduled passenger service, with subsidies if necessary. However, the Trump’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 budget proposal would eliminate this funding for the program which could force rural airports to suspend service and residents to drive hundreds of miles, where there are roads, to reach the nearest major airport reducing access to medical care, hurting tourism and local commerce.
Small runways, such as the one in Waimea, can help with delivery
of fresh grown produce from the Big Island. 
     The EAS Act was introduced with the following original cosponsors: Senators Brian Schatz, of Hawai`i, and Republican Lisa Murkowski  of Alaska.
     “As an island state, air travel is critical to our economy and our daily lives,”  said Schatz.
     Under the Trump budget, EAS would lose $175 million of funding currently appropriated by Congress in addition to amounts funded through overflight fees. This cut represent over half of EAS total funding. The EAS Act reauthorizes the Congressional appropriation of $175 million annually through FY 2022. EAS funding is set to expire on September 30, 2017.

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NAHUKU, THE THURSTON LAVA TUBE will be closed from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday, June 1 for semi-annual maintenance.      
     Thurston Lava Tube (Nāhuku), and its verdant rainforest trail, are popular features in the park located near the summit of Kīlauea volcano. The lava tube is a tunnel formed by a robust river of molten rock that erupted from Kīlauea volcano about 550 years ago. The native rainforest surrounding Nāhuku is managed as a Special Ecological Area, and is home to numerous endemic plant, bird and insect species. Visitation is heaviest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
      Flooding on the floor of the lava tube is common during times of heavy rain, and park management will shut off its electrical source for safety reasons. Visitors are advised to bring their own light source (cell phone lights are adequate) as a backup. 
     On June 1, workers will pump the septic system for the comfort station starting at 6 a.m., and should be complete by 10 a.m. or sooner, according to a statement from Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The public will be notified of any delays. Date and time are subject to change.

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