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.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Kaʻū News Briefs, Thursday, February 28, 2019

Southwest Airlines will start booking flights from California airports to Kona soon. Image from southwest.com
SOUTHWEST EARNED THE OK TO FLY TO HAWAIʻI on Feb. 27. A series of test flights earlier this month monitored by the Federal Aviation Administration showed the airline is ready for long-haul over ocean flights from the West Coast, including direct flights to Kona. Southwest also plans interisland flights.
     Southwest's chief operating officer Mike Van de Ven announced the news to employees on Wednesday: "The FAA today officially authorized Southwest to operate ETOPS or Extended Operations flights... We have teams now finalizing our plans to offer service to Hawaiʻi, and we'll publicly announce our timing for inaugural flights and other service when we publish our schedule in the coming days."
The first Southwest flight to Hawaiʻi was met on Oʻahu by smiling
faces and an airplane-sized lei. Photo from southwest.com
     Kona, Honolulu, Kahului, and Lihuʻe will be connected to San Diego, Oakland, Sacramento, San and San Jose, all California airports.
     Says the Southwest website: "We also intend to provide interisland service, so you can fly between the Hawaiian Islands with us, too. For more information on the islands we intend to serve, visit the Southwest Community."

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A NEW WASTEWATER TREATMENT SYSTEM FOR NĀʻĀLEHU drew questions at Tuesday's meeting regarding paying to hook up, a requirement to abandon existing septic systems for the county sewer pipe, and the reason to build a sewage treatment plant rather than septic tank.
     Iwao Yonemitsu of Nāʻālehu Hongwanji said the church paid for its own septic system. Should the sewer line go by and the church be ordered to hook up, could the Hongwanji receive reimbursement for its septic system? County representatives said county code requires all buildings to hook up to county sewer lines that go by their properties.
     In Nāʻālehu the new sewer line is planned to travel along Hwy 11 from the school and old mill camp to just shy of the hongwanji. The school, gym, community center, post office, library, churches, Bay Clinic, 76 gas station, Punaluʻu Bakeshop, Hana Hou, Ace Hardware, CU Hawaiʻi Federal Credit Union, Shaka's, the shopping center, and other buildings along the Hwy 11 strip would be required to hook up at their own expense. Their septic systems would be retired, building owners relieved of pumping their tanks and other maintenance, as well as having to put in additional capacity should the use of their facilities grow.
Iwao Yonemitsu points to Nāʻālehu Hongwanji, which 
installed its own septic system. Photo by Julia Neal
     County representatives told Yonemitsu there is no rebate for having put in a septic system prior to the sewer line going in. Some homeowners wondered if there could be assistance in the cost of hooking up to the sewer system, saying they heard prices as high as $20,000. Bill Kucharski, Director of the Hawaiʻi County Department of Environmental Management, said he and his staff are looking into grants and loans to help with the expense for those who are unable to afford hooking up. All of those served by the old sewer line put in by the old sugar company would be hooked up at no charge. Those on cesspools and septic along the way would pay for their hookups.
     The proposed site for the wastewater treatment is makai of Nāʻālehu, 2.5 miles from the ocean.
The proposed site has been moved twice, once from land near the police station, after it was determined to be a rich archaeological site, and the other next to Nāʻālehu School.
     Some residents said the price for the wastewater treatment facility, at over $40 million, is too expensive, even though the cost will be shared county wide. They asked that a septic system be used to satisfy EPA requirements to abandon three large capacity gang cesspools that serve the old sugar camp of 163 houses.
      County representatives said that newer wastewater technology with disposal of  treated effluent in forested groves, rather than tanks requiring pumping and shipping waste to the landfill, is the preferred technology and follows the Kaʻū Community Development Plan that forecasts some growth in the town.
     An Environmental Assessment is expected in late May or June for review by the public before the county continues to purchase the treatment site and start the construction.
     Several advocates of the septic tank solution said they are suing the county and other agencies to stop the wastewater plant.
     See yesterday's Kaʻū News Briefs for more.
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A BILL TO EXPAND BACKGROUND CHECKS ON THOSE PURCHASING GUNS passed the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday. Backed by Hawaiʻi Reps. Tulsi Gabbard and Ed Case, HR. 8,  would "utilize the current background checks process in the United States to ensure individuals prohibited from gun possession are not able to obtain firearms."
March for Our Lives, a group created after a school shooting in Parkland, FL, cost 17 lives, encourages the public
to contact legislators to vote for universal background checks for gun purchases. MFOL photo
     Gabbard remarked, "97% of Americans support universal background checks for gun purchases. The passage of this bipartisan common-sense legislation is long overdue to help save lives and make our communities more safe."
     Case tweeted yesterday, "Today, I joined many of my colleagues in passing H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act, a reasonable bill that would #UpdateBackgroundChecks to include private transactions, including purchases online and at gun sales. Background checks help keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people without infringing on the 2nd Amendment rights of Americans. "
     The companion bill, S. 42, Background Check Expansion Act, is co-sponsored by Senators Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono, as well as 39 other Democratic senators and Independent Bernie Sanders.
     March for Our Lives, the campaign spearheaded by survivors of a school shooting in Florida last year that killed seven people, encourages the public to act:
     "Call your Senator at 1-844-436-2403 and fight to make universal background checks the law of the land.
     "NRA-backed senators have already spent decades doing nothing while tens of thousands of Americans die from gun violence every year. But if we work together, we can pass the first gun violence prevention bill in a generation. It's up to us to demand that they act."

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THE RENEWABLE ENERGY PORTFOLIO of Hawaiian Electric Companies reached 27 percent in 2018, even with the loss of Puna Geothermal Venture, with its plant partially covered by lava during the Kīlauea volcanic eruption. Use of renewables was up from 9 percent a decade ago, in producing electricity for Hawaiʻi, Honolulu and Maui counties.
     According to a statement from Hawaiʻi Electric Companies, they lost no ground in toward the goal to reach 100 percent renewable energy in 2045. The companies would have registered 29 percent renewables had PGV produced at the same level as 2017.
     Hawaiʻi Electric Light, Maui Electric, and Hawaiian Electric are on track to achieve the next mandated renewables milestone: 30 percent by 2020.The companies' annual use of fossil fuels has declined by 88 million gallons over the past 10 years – about 19 percent, says the statement from the utilities.
     Hawaiʻi Electric Light, with the mix of geothermal through May, 2018, and solar, wind, and hydroelectricity, recorded 44 percent use of renewables, down from 57 percent in 2017. HELCO would have reached 64 percent if PGV had stayed online for the full year. Maui Electric recorded 38 percent, up from 34 percent in 2017, and Oʻahu was at 22 percent, up from 21 percent the previous year.
Lava approaching Puna Geothermal Venture last year. USGS photo
     Peak renewable energy production for the year on Hawaiʻi Island was reached on April 14, 2018, when 79 percent of electricity demand was met by renewables. The peak was 80 percent on Maui on April 14, 2018, and 58 percent was achieved on May 19, 2018, on Oʻahu.
     Two projects – Kuia Solar and South Maui Renewable Resources – came online on Maui last year, the island's first grid-scale solar arrays. On Molokaʻi, regulators approved the island's first large-scale solar-plus-storage renewable project, Molokaʻi New Energy Partners.
     On Oʻahu, the 20-megawatt West Loch Solar facility in Ewa will come online this year, as will three Clearway Energy solar facilities totaling 110 MW. Power purchase agreements for seven solar-plus-storage facilities on Hawaiʻi Island, Oʻahu, and Maui were filed in 2018 with regulators, laying the foundation for the largest surge in renewable energy in state history.
     By 2022, says the release, there will be more than 4.4 million solar panels delivering energy to the grid.

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A WARNING ABOUT MOMO CHALLENGE has been issued by the Department of Education. East Hawaiʻi Complex Area Superintendent, Chad Farias, sent a letter to parents today, saying The Momo Challenge is "the latest series of online challenges targeting youth and teens." The letter says while evidence of students using the game is limited, coverage in news and over social media is "extensive... It's important that parents talk to their children about it... It takes a collective community to be vigilant in ensuring student safety."
Commonly used image by media to represent "Momo," a
purported tool for online bullying.
Image from Cambridge News
     The letter states the Challenge is "played" over a digital social media platform, where contact is initiated by messaging a phone from a number found online. If the target engages, directions are given to "complete challenges that can include self-harm and even suicide," states the letter. "There have been reports that bullies have been posing as 'Momo' – a nightmarish character with bulging eyes and a chilling smile – on platforms to bully others into harming themselves."
     The superintendent encourages parents to "ask their child whether they have seen anything online that has upset or worried them, and explain there are often things that happen online that can be misleading or frightening, and that some things are solely designed to get a lot of attention."
     The superintendent also recommends parents "be proactive and foster an atmosphere of openness and transparency about their child's online activity," and review online safety and security features, especially since so many children have their own devices.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is free to 5,500 mailboxes 
throughout Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano, and free on 
stands throughout the district. Read online at kaucalendar.com
Kaʻū Trojans Spring Sports Schedule
Mon., March 4, 3 p.m., host Konawaena
Wed., March 6, 3 p.m., @Kamehameha
Sat., March 9, 1 p.m., host Kohala
Sat., March 16, 1 p.m., host Keaʻau
Thu., March 21, 3 p.m., @Waiakea
Sat., March 23, 1 p.m., host Honokaʻa
Tue., March 5, host Konawaena
Thu., March 7, @Kamehameha
Sat., March 9, 11 a.m., host Kohala
Mon., March 11, host Kamehameha
Wed., March 13, 5:30 p.m., host Pāhoa
Sat., March 16, 11 a.m., host Keaʻau
Wed., March 20, @Waiakea
Sat., March 23, 11 a.m., host Honokaʻa
Boys Volleyball:
Fri., March 1, 6 p.m., host Pāhoa
Fri., March 8, 6 p.m., @Kealakehe
Tue., March 12, 6 p.m., @Makualani, Varsity
Fri., March 15, 6 p.m., host Waiakea
Tue., March 19, 6 p.m., @Kealakehe
Sat., March 2, 9 a.m., @HPA
Sat., March 9, 2 p.m., @Keaʻau
Sat., March 16, 2 p.m., @Konawaena
Sat., March 23, 9 a.m., @Waiakea

JEJ JAMIN MELOKLOK – We Shall Not Forget – the First Anniversary of Commemorating the Nuclear Legacy of the Marshall Islands and 65th Anniversary of Castle Bravo Shot, happens Saturday, March 9, 10 a.m., at Old Airport Recreational Center, 75-5560 Kuakini Hwy, Kona.
     Says the release: "On behalf of all the Big Island Marshallese Community, the Coordinating Committee for 2019 Nuclear Victims & Survivors Remembrance Day cordially invites you."
     Sponsored by Marshall Islands National Nuclea Commission, Marshall Islans General Consulate Office in Hawaiʻi, and West Hawaiʻi Commnbity Health Center. Contact David Anitok, secretary@rmnuclearcommission.net.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Exploring Tunnel Books - Bookbinding Workshop, Saturday, March 2, 9a.m.-noonVolcano ArtCenter. $32/VAC member, $35/non-member, plus $10 materials fee. Prior experience not necessary. List of supplies online. Register: volcanoartcenter.org, 967-8222

Paint Your Own Silk Scarf with Patti Pease Johnson, Saturday, March 2, 9a.m.-12:30p.m.Volcano Art Center. $45/VAC member, $50/non-member, plus $10 supply fee. Beginner and intermediate artists welcome. Register: volcanoartcenter.org, 967-8222

Stewardship at the Summit, Saturday, March 2, 9, and 16, Friday, March 22 and 29, 8:45a.m.-noon, Kīlauea Visitor Center. Volunteers remove invasive, non-native plants. Wear sturdy hiking shoes and long pants. Bring hat, rain gear, day pack, snacks, and water. Gloves/tools provided. Parental/guardian accompaniment or written consent required for those under 18. Free; park entrance fees apply. Paul and Jane Field, field@hawaii.edu, nps.gov/havo

Keiki Science Class, Saturday, March 2 – 1st Saturday, monthly – 11a.m.-noon, Ace Hardware Stores islandwide; Nā‘ālehu, 929-9030 and Ocean View, 929-7315. Free. acehardware.com

Dispose of Hazardous Household Waste, Sunday, March 3, 8:30a.m.-3:30p.m., Pāhoa Recycling and Transfer Station. See complete list of acceptable or unacceptable household hazardous waste at hawaiizerowaste.org/recycle/household-hazardous-waste. Contact Chris Chin-Chance at 961-8554 or recycle3@hawaiicounty.gov.

Ham Radio Potluck Picnic, Sunday, March 3 – 1st Sunday, monthly – noon-2p.m., Manukā State Park. Anyone interested in learning about ham radio is welcome to attend. View sites.google.com/site/southpointarc or
sites.google.com/view/southhawaiiares/home. Rick Ward, 938-3058

Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund Coastal Net Patrol, Monday, March 4. Register in advance. Free; donations appreciated. kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com, 769-7629

Free Vision Screening for All Ages, Monday, March 4, 9:30-11:30a.m., Kauahaʻao Church in Waiʻōhinu. All ages receive screening for near and far vision. Keiki are screened for color deficiencies, adults for eye diseases. Keiki receive free sunglasses, adults free reading glasses. Sponsored by Tūtū & Me and Project Vision Hawaiʻi, projectvisionhawaii.org, 808-282-2265.

Ka‘ū Homeschool Co–op Group, Monday, March 4 and 18, 1p.m., Ocean View Community Center. Parent-led homeschool activity and social group, building community in Ka‘ū. Confirm location in case of field trip. Laura Roberts, 406-249-3351

Ocean View Volunteer Fire Dept. Mtg., Monday, March 4, 4-6p.m.Ocean View Community Center. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Free Vision Screening for All Ages, Tuesday, March 5, 9-11a.m.Pāhala Community Center. All ages receive screening for near and far vision. Keiki are screened for color deficiencies, adults for eye diseases. Keiki receive free sunglasses, adults free reading glasses. Sponsored by Tūtū & Me and Project Vision Hawaiʻi, projectvisionhawaii.org, 808-282-2265.

Ka‘ū Coffee Growers Mtg., Tuesday, March 5, 6-8p.m.Pāhala Community Center.

Ash Wednesday Service, Wednesday, March 6, 3p.m., St. Jude's Episcopal Church. 939-7000, stjudeshawaii.org

Arts and Crafts Activity: Tissue Paper Butterfly, Wednesday, March 6, 3:30-5p.m., multi-purpose room, Ka‘ū District Gym. Register keiki ages 5-12 through March 5. Free. 928-3102, hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation

Hula Voices with Kumu Hula Ka‘ea Lyons and Lily Lyons, Wednesday, March 6 – 1st Wednesday, monthly – 5:30-7p.m., Volcano Art Center Gallery. Desiree Moana Cruz moderates the talk story session. Free. 967-7565

Open Mic Night, Wednesday, March 6, 6-10p.m., Lava Lounge, Kīlauea Military Camp. Call 967-8365 after 4p.m. to sign up and for more details. Park entrance fees may apply. Open to KMC patrons and sponsored guests, 21+. 967-8371, kilaueamilitarycamp.com

Women's Support Group, Thursday, March 7 – 1st Thursday monthly – 3-4:30p.m., PARENTS Inc., Nā‘ālehu. Women welcome to drop in. Free. Lindsey Miller, 333-3460, lindsey@hawaiiparents.org

All Ages Game Nite, Thursday, March 7, 5:30-7:30p.m., Ka‘ū District Gym. Register through March 5. 928-3102, hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation

Ocean View Neighborhood Watch Mtg., Thursday, March 7, 6-7p.m.Ocean View Community Center. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Kauahaʻao Congregational Church Fundraising Bazaar, Saturday, March 16, 9-2 pm, just above Wong Yuen Store in Waiʻōhinu. Bazaar vendor spaces on the church lawn are $10 for 10' X 10'. Vendors are responsible for bringing all supplies, including electricity. Church members will sell kalua pig and cabbage bowls, and roast chicken with gravy bowls, as well as baked goods, produce, and crafts. Submit application with fee by Sunday, March 10; call Debbie or Walter, 928-8039, for application.

Applications for a Job to Help Kids with Healthy Eating and Living in Kaʻū are open through Friday, March 15. Full-time 11.5-month commitment from August 1, 2019 through July 15, 2020, at Pāhala Elementary School. $22,000 living stipend paid bi-weekly; $6,095 AmeriCorps Segal education award upon successful completion of service; student loan deferral or forbearance, if eligible; partial childcare reimbursement, if eligible; health insurance; ongoing training; mentorship; and professional development. Apply at foodcorps.org/apply. See the service member position description for more details. Visit foodcorps.orgFacebook page, or contact seri.niimi-burch@foodcorps.org for more information.

Niuhi-Shark Fine Art Exhibit is open daily through Sunday, March 24 at Volcano Art Center Gallery. The public is invited to hear different perspectives on the life of Kamehameha the Great and experience a visual experience of important events in Kamehameha's life from the perspective of two styles of art. The exhibit and supporting events promise paint, prose, protocol, and conversations providing cultural, historical, and educational experiences, with original paintings by Carl F. K. Pao, paired with selections from the book Kamehameha–The Rise of a King by David Kāwika Eyre, with illustrations by Brook Parker. Visit volcanoartcenter.org for more information.

Preschool Opens Doors Applications are open for the 2019-2020 school year. The Department of Human Services encourages families to apply before Friday, March 29. This program is for families seeking aid in paying for preschool. Applications, available at patchhawaii.org, received during this period will be considered for preschool participation during July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020. For more information, visit bit.ly/2TolEOm or call 800-746-5620.

Five Scholarships are available from American Association of University Women-Kona: Three $2000 scholarships will go to female college-bound Kaʻū High School and West Hawaiʻi high school students. Applications must be postmarked by Monday, April 1. Two $1,000 scholarships will go to any female high school graduate or older women attending a two-year vocational program leading to a marketable skill at Palamanui Campus. Applications must be postmarked by Wednesday, April 10.  Application packets available at kona-hi.aauw.net. Contact sharonnind@aol.com.

Beginning Farmer Institute Cohort Applications open through Monday, April 15. Free training program which "prepares new producers of any age or operation type for a successful future in agriculture." Applications at nfu.org/education/beginning-farmer-institute.

Kaʻū Coffee Fest invites non-profits, clubs, cooperatives, and businesses to sign up for booths at the 11th annual Kaʻū Coffee Fest Hoʻolauleʻa on Saturday, May 4 at Pāhala Community Center. The all-day event comes with music, hula, coffee tasting, and meeting the famous Kaʻū Coffee farmers. See KauCoffeeFestival.com.
     Booth fees are $100 for food vendors; $60 for non-food items and crafts, including coffee and coffee samples; and $35 for pre-approved information displays. No campaign and other political displays. Fifty percent discounts for non-profit organizations and cooperatives selling food, crafts, and coffee. Vendors must also obtain county vendor permits costing $30 each and a Department of Health permit, if serving food.
     Call Gail Nagata 933-0918. Apply by Friday, April 26. Application at KauCoffeeFestival.com. Email to biokepamoses@gmail.com; mail to Brenda Iokepa-Moses, P.O. Box 208PāhalaHI 96777; or call 808-731-5409.

Applications for Paid Internship in Kaʻū for Kupu Hawai‘i and The Nature Conservancy are open. Year-long, full-time position in TNC's Hawai‘i Island Terrestrial Program stewards native forest preserves in Ka‘ū and South Kona. $1,600 monthly living allowance, before taxes; a $5,920 education award towards higher education; health care and childcare benefit, if eligible; and receiving an entry-level conservation career experience. Application at kupuhawaii.org/conservation. For more, call The Nature Conservancy, 443-5401, or call Kupu Hawai‘i, 808-735-1221.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.