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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Kaʻū News Briefs, Thursday, May 30, 2019

Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt talked to reporters outside of Volcano House today. They discussed
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory staff staying on island and the future of Jaggar Museum and HVO headquarters.
Photo by Julia Neal
U.S. SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR DAVID BERNHARDT stood on the edge of Kīlauea Caldera today and said that Hawaiian Volcano Observatory headquarters will remain on Hawaiʻi Island. After putting on a hard hat and visiting Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park's Jaggar Museum and HVO headquarters, undermined by earthquakes and the collapse of crater walls last year, he talked with reporters. They discussed the impact of the loss of the buildings to scientists, visitors, and the local economy. "I wouldn't be here if I didn't think this was going to be a priority and move forward as expeditiously as humanly possible," said Bernhardt.
HVO Chief Scientist Tina Neal and acting Superintendent of Hawaiʻi 
Volcanoes National park Rhonda Loh show Secretary of the Interior David 
Bernhardt the plaza overlooking Kīlauea Caldera. 
Photo by DOI/Tami A. Heilemann
     On money that could be used for facility recovery, he said there is a process with Congress. "We are in a process where they have found some money, but I never make a prediction on that until it's presented to the President. But I do think the Senators have been very responsive and I think we'll be in good shape. We already have some resources from federal highways and others that will be coming and doing planning to deal with some subsidence, and things like that."
     When asked whether Jaggar Museum could be reopened, he said, "When you stand there, at the caldera, my initial reaction, honestly, was that there needs to be something. It just seems that it would be counter purposes not to have something right near there. At the same time, there's movement on that ground. I mean that's clearly obvious, it's still moving potentially. So we need to think that through because, obviously, safety's very first. I think that's a site to be very thoughtful about." Bernhardt noted that visitation to the park is rebounding.
     He also noted that HVO moved to places, in Hilo, to stay fully operational. He said the determination of a fixed plan for a permanent location is at least months away. He did say the headquarters would remain on Hawaiʻi Island, following speculation that scientists and other staff could be distributed to Hilo, Honolulu, and other places.
     The Interior Secretary also said he met with HVO and HVNP employees today. "We have some incredible employees here at both the National Park Service and also at the U.S. Geological Survey. I was able to commend the team that had spent so much time and effort up here during the event," the summit collapse and quakes that led them to abandon the buildings and close the park, all the while keeping the community informed.

Secretary of the Interior David Berhhardt tours the HVO building, with its 
severe damage from earthquakes and the collapse of the caldera 
where it is perched. Photo by DOI/Tami A. Heilemann
     Bernhardt toured the off-limits HVO headquarters with Chief Scientist Tina Neal and Acting HVNP Superintendent Rhonda Loh. Neal pointed to large cracks in walls and other structural damage. On the plaza, overlooking the recently created, large collapse feature of the volcano summit, Neal reminded Bernhardt that HVO has been there since the early part of the last century and Jaggar museum since the 1920s.

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USGS WILL KEEP HAWAIIAN VOLCANO OBSERVATORY HERE, reported Sen. Mazie Hirono today, after a meeting with Dr. Jim Reilly, Director of the U.S. Geological Survey.
     Said Hirono, "The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is an integral part of the Hawaiʻi Island community, as we saw when HVO scientists worked around the clock with first responders to provide critical information during last year's volcanic activity. It just makes sense that this critical agency remains anchored on Hawaiʻi Island, and I want to thank Dr. Reilly for being receptive to community concerns on this matter."
     During his confirmation hearing in March, Hirono urged then-Acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to incorporate feedback from Hawaiʻi Island residents and Hawaiʻi's Congressional Delegation before deciding whether to move the Observatory to Oʻahu.
     Hirono told Bernhardt: "The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory was completely destroyed, as you know, during the eruption. We obviously need to rebuild the facility and there are discussions of building it outside of the island on which actually there are active volcanoes. That doesn't seem to make a lot of sense. I would want to have your commitment that you will listen to the Congressional delegation as well as local stakeholders to put this observatory where the eruptions will likely occur."
     Bernhard replied, "I have to say, I will absolutely look into that."

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EXPERIENCE VOLCANO released a statement today, promoting the Experience Volcano Festival, coming up on Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28. The event is coordinated with the new ʻŌhiʻa Lehua Half Marathon, 5K, and Keiki Dash.
     Vendors can apply for Experience Volcano. Experience Volcano is a group of businesses and residents helping to rebuild the economy of Volcano, following last year's volcanic disaster that shut down Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park and drastically reduced the visitor county which is now recovering. See ExperienceVolcano.com.

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ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH wraps up tomorrow. Sen. Mazie Hirono, who came here as a child immigrant from Japan, issued a statement saying, "APA Heritage Month is an opportunity to recognize the cultures, the trailblazers, and stories of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities in Hawaiʻi and across the country. While we celebrate these contributions, there is still much work to be done to ensure opportunity and equality for AAPI communities, and we must continue fighting for these goals."
     Last week, Hirono, along with 22 of her U.S. Senate colleagues, introduced a resolution recognizing the significance of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May, and the contributions of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community.
     Throughout May, Hirono, the first Asian American woman elected to the United States Senate, introduced several pieces of legislation to benefit the AAPI community. Last week, Hirono reintroduced the Filipino Veterans Family Reunification Act, which she previously introduced in the 113th, 114th, and 115th Congresses. This legislation would expedite the visa process for children of Filipino World War II veterans. She also introduced the Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019, bipartisan legislation that would close a loophole in the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 that prevented internationally-adopted children from receiving U.S. citizenship despite being legally adopted by U.S. citizens.
     Hirono also introduced a resolution to commemorate the life and legacy of Rep. Patsy Takemoto Mink, who, when elected to represent Hawaiʻi in 1964, was the first Asian American woman and woman of color elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.

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
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Coffee Talk at Kahuku, Roosevelt's Tree Army: Civilian Conservation Corps in Hawai‘i, Friday, May 31, 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m., Kahuku Unit Visitor Contact Station. Talk story with Dr. Jadelyn Moniz Nakamura. "Bring your own cuppa." Free. nps.gov/havo

Summer Reading Program: A Universe of Stories, June 1-July 13, all Hawai‘i Public Libraries including Nā‘ālehu and Pāhala. Starting June 1, sign-in and register at librarieshawaii.beanstack.org for free reading rewards, activities and programs for all ages and a chance to win a round trip for Four to anywhere Alaska Airlines flies.

Edible Wild Plants: A Hands-On Foray for Foragers and Foodies with Zach Mermel of Ola Design Group, Saturday, June 1, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Volcano Art Center. $30/VAC member, $40/non-member, plus $15 transportation fee. Class size limited. Register early. volcanoartcenter.org, 967-8222

Lā‘au Lapa‘āu Workshop, Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Kaʻū District Gym. Free workshop open to the public from Hui Mālama Ola Nā ‘Ōiwi Traditional Health team. 969-9220, hmono.org

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

Andy McKee Plays in Volcano at Kīlauea Military Camp's Kīlauea Theater, Saturday, June 1. Show begins at 7:45 p.m. A Park entrance fee may apply if arriving before 7:30 p.m. McKee is an acoustic guitar "virtuoso, a master practitioner" of folk, blues, bluegrass, and other musical genres. Information or purchase tickets, $48, at (808) 896-4845, kilaueamilitarycamp.com, or bluesbearhawaii.com.

Ham Radio Potluck Picnic, Sunday, June 2 – 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 County Council Mtgs., Monday, June 3 (Committees), Tuesday, June 4 (Council), Hilo. Ka‘ū residents can participate via videoconferencing at Nā‘ālehu State Office Building. Agendas at hawaiicounty.gov.

LIHEAP Energy Assistance Program Applications, Monday, June 3, 10, 17, or 24, Tuesday, June 4, 11, 18 or 25, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Green Room, Ocean View Community Center. See hceoc.net/programs/energy for full list of requirements and to download forms.

Mr. Kneel Public Speaker and Professional Beatboxer, Monday, June 3, 2:30 p.m., Pāhala Public and School Library. Features math, reading, Dr. Seuss, and family friendly humor. 928-2015

Ocean View Volunteer Fire Department Mtg., Monday, June 3 and July 1, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Ocean View Community Center. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Ka‘ū Coffee Growers Mtg., Tuesday, June 4, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Pāhala Community Center.

Early Head Start, Wednesday, June 5 – 1st Wednesday, monthly – 10 a.m. to noon, Ocean View Community Center. Social get together for keiki and parents; open to public. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Master Gardeners: Plant Propagation, Wednesday, June 5, 2 p.m., Nā‘ālehu Public Library. Sharing techniques to propagate plants. Free seeds and starts give away. 939-2442

All About Buddhism in the Jodo Shinshu Tradition, Wednesday, June 5 and every following Wednesday, 5 p.m., Nā‘ālehu Hongwanji Buddhist Temple. Book study/talk story. Materials and light refreshments provided. Temple president Robert Kobzi, robertkobzi@aol.com

Hula Voices with Kumu Hula Sammi Fo, Wednesday, June 5 – 1st Wednesday, monthly – 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Volcano Art Center Gallery. Desiree Moana Cruz moderates the talk story session. Free. 967-7565, volcanoartcenter.org

Keiki Jiggle Bums, Thursday, June 6 and 20 – 1st and 3rd Thursday, monthly – 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., Ocean View Community Center. Discover the joy of early learning through song and musical instruments. For keiki 0-4 years. Nicola, 238-8544

Women's Expression Group, Thursday, June 6 – 1st Thursday monthly – 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., PARENTS Inc., Nā‘ālehu. Women welcome to drop in. Free. Lindsey Miller, 333-3460, lindsey@hawaiiparents.org

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

‘O Ka‘ū Kākou Mtg., Thursday, June 6, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Aspen Center. okaukakou.org

Summer Programs for Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary registrations are open.
     Uplink All-Stars runs Friday, June 7 through Friday, June 28 for students in grades 6, 7, and 8.
     Algebra camp is also open to students in grades 6, 7, and 8 from Monday, June 10 through Friday, June 21.
     Early College, for high school students, runs from Wednesday, June 12 through Thursday, July 11.
     All three programs require registration by calling 313-4100.
     Seamless Summer Program, open to all people under age 18, no registration required, offers free breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m., and free lunch from 11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., on weekdays , June 7 through July 11, except June 11 and July 4, in the school cafeteria.

Exhibit – Hulihia, A Complete Change: The Hawai‘i Nei Invitational Exhibition, runs through Sunday, June 16, daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Volcano Art Center Gallery. Multi-media exhibition of seven artists. Free; National Park entrance fees may apply. 967-7565, volcanoartcenter.org

Nā‘ālehu Independence Day Parade Sign-Up Open until Thursday, June 20. Parade happens Saturday, June 29 at 11 a.m. The parade route begins at the Nāʻālehu Elementary School and ends at the Nāʻālehu Hongwanji Mission. To participate, call Debra McIntosh, 929-9872.

Full-Time Teaching Assistant Sought by Tūtū & Me to implement curriculum for caregivers and keiki in Tūtū & Me Traveling Preschool in Kaʻū. Competitive salary and benefits package, including medical, dental, drug, and vision; flexible spending plan; 403b retirement plan; vacation, sick days, and 14 paid days off; and more.
     Minimum requirement is a high school diploma. Early Childhood Education, related coursework, and/or experience working children preferred. For more, visit pidf.org/about/careers. Apply by emailing resume and cover letter to hr@pidfoundation.org or fax to 808-440-6619.

Hi-Employment Seeks Student Employees to work in a macadamia nut orchard on weekends and holidays. Duties include hand-harvesting macadamia nuts, filling and transporting nut bag and buckets, loading 25-plus pound bags into truck beds, and possible clearing of brush and branches. Applicants must be at least 15 years old, have a work permit, two forms of ID, and transportation to "Panaʻewa Stretch." Call for more details, 238-3741, hi-employment.com.

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