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, November 16, 2019

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Saturday, November 16, 2019

On Nov. 8, Mayor Harry Kim, Sen. Russell Ruderman, and Sen. Kai Kahele attended Hawaiʻi Island's first ʻOhana Zone Project
blessing at Keolahou.  Located in Hilo, the 20 units of permanent supportive housing are set to open to those in need in the Spring.
Hope Services will lead Keolahou with support from multiple community partners. Photo from Kim's Facebook
A PILOT PROGRAM TO DIRECT DRUG USERS AND OTHER LOWER LOW LEVEL OFFENDERS toward receiving places to live and social services began Thursday for Hawaiʻi Island.
     On Oʻahu and Maui, this Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion project led to a "55 percent reduction in law enforcement citations, an increased feeling of wellness, and a decrease in meth use," according to KHON.com. LEAD is an alternative to the standard criminal justice system cycle: booking, detention, prosecution, conviction, then incarceration.
     Mayor Harry Kim said, "I am excited about the implementation of the LEAD program on Hawaiʻi Island... I am so proud of our police officers and all others involved in this program," KHON.com reported.
     Gov. David Ige posted to Facebook that the launch of the LEAD program here "represents another step forward in our effort to resolve #homelessness. We're confident that LEAD will improve the well-being of participants on Hawaiʻi Island."
     The pilot project for Hawaiʻi Island received $650,000 in ʻOhana Zone funding. Big Island Substance Abuse Council is in charge of operations, with support from HOPE Services Hawaiʻi, Going Home Hawaiʻi, and Bridge House. Hawaiʻi County Police Department and Prosecutor's Office are also involved.
     According to the National Institute of Corrections, the LEAD program allows law enforcement to "redirect low-level offenders engaged in drug or prostitution activity to community-based services, instead of jail and prosecution." NIC states that, by diverting eligible individuals to services, LEAD's goal is to improve public safety and public order, and reduce criminal behavior. LEAD reduces recidivism by 22 percent, according to NIC. LEAD program began in 2011 in Seattle and has inspired similar programs in 34 states.
     Dr. Hannah Preston-Pita, chief executive officer of BISAC, said, "We are really excited to begin the LEAD program on Hawaiʻi Island. With the lack of resources on our island, this program will definitely make a big impact. Our mayor, prosecuting attorney, chief of police and our local providers – Hope Services, Bridge House, and Going Home – have been ready since day one to add this program as a resource. BISAC and ADAD (the Hawaiʻi Department of Health's Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division) have been planning this program for the last couple of months and now it's finally here."
     State legislators appropriated $30 million for at least one ʻOhana Zone site each on Hawaiʻi Island, Maui, and Kauaʻi, and at least three on Oʻahu. The law requires ʻOhana Zones be placed on state and county land, and that those spaces provide services to assist homeless individuals and families in accessing permanent housing.
     Other ʻOhana Zones projects in Hawaiʻi County include an assessment center at the Na Kahua Hale o Ulu Wini housing complex, the Village 9 affordable housing project in Kona, and 20 units of permanent supportive housing at Keolahou emergency shelter.

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SUPPORT FOR DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, came this week from Hawaiʻi's congressional delegation, which supports keeping the program in place. The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on Tuesday after three appellate courts blocked Pres. Donald Trump's 2017 order to end DACA.
     DACA is a 2012 Obama-era program that has let about 700,000 qualifying young adult DREAMers – who arrived in the United States as children, without legal documentation – to get health insurance, get a driver's license, education, jobs and more, without threat of deportation.
     The court is examining whether Trump's order to end DACA is legal, not whether the Obama administration acted legally in creating the program. A decision is expected by June.
     Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said, "We must defend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. We cannot break our promises, break up families or punish young people who were brought to this country as minors through no choice of their own. These are neighbors, our friends, our fellow Americans.
     "DACA has transformed the lives and futures of hundreds of thousands of young people across our country. Because of DACA, DREAMers have been able to go to college, find a job, support their family, serve their country, and live free from the constant threat of deportation."
Sen. Mazie Hirono, with Jung Woo and Kris, who marched for 18 days, said Hirono, "to remind us their #HomeIsHere. Photo from Hirono's Facebook
     Sen. Mazie Hirono said the Supreme Court heard arguments "on @realDonaldTrump's unlawful attempts to end #DACA." She thanked two marchers, Jung Woo and Kris, "who marched for 18 days to remind us their #HomeIsHere. I'm proud to stand with the 800,000+ Dreamers. We must keep the fight going."
     During the hearing, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said more explanation was needed about ending DACA because ending it would be "a choice to destroy lives." Justice Neil Gorsuch said he didn't think it was the court's role to examine the decision to end the program.
     Just before oral arguments, Trump tweeted: "Many of the people in DACA, no longer very young, are far from 'angels,' some are very tough, hardened criminals." To qualify for DACA status, applicants who are high school graduates or veterans must prove that they have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or more than three lesser crimes.
     If the court allows DACA to end, most DREAMers will maintain a two-year protection until a new president takes office in 2021.

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STATEWIDE VOTING BY MAIL IS MOVING FORWARD, with preparations in all counties. In July, Gov. David Ige signed into law Act 136, which requires all elections in Hawaiʻi be conducted by mail, starting with the primary election next year. The decision was made partly because more than 46 percent of voters voted by mail in the 2014 primary election, according to the bill.
     The voting by mail program will allow some exceptions, including providing voter service centers within each county for hand delivery of mail-in ballots. The centers will open for the ten days prior to and including election day, in Hilo and Kona, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday, to provide same-day voter registration; provide assistance to those with special needs; and other election services.
     Each registered voter will receive a package with ballot, postage-paid identification envelope, secrecy sleeve, and instructions. No ballots will be forwarded by the U.S. Postal Service. Voters can expect ballots to arrive about 18 days before each election: Saturday, Aug. 8 for the primary and Tuesday, Nov. 3 for the general election, in 2020.
     The plan is for  registered voters to receive voter information cards by mail in January. Those who don't receive them can contact the county clerk's office or visit the state Office of Elections website. Anyone with a valid Hawaiʻi drivers license or state ID card can register or re-register online. Voters will be sent a signature verification card that must be signed and returned so the machines can verify their signatures.
Voting booths like these are a thing of the past for most, with voting by mail mandatory throughout the state starting
next year. Photo by Julia Neal
     Hawaiʻi Tribune Herald reported Hawaiʻi County Clerk Jon Henricks saying that his staff will receive a high-speed ballot sorting machine by February. It will be kept in a secure, climate-controlled room.  The machine is able to process up to 18,000 ballots an hour. It won't be connected to the internet, a feature that increases elections security. He said the machine will "expedite signature verification" – a time-consuming task – "without sacrificing accuracy.”
     Following an informational briefing Wednesday, state Rep. Chris Lee, Chair, House Committee on Judiciary, said, "We wrote this bill to expand voting hours and access, and make it easier for everyone to vote. We hope to see voter participation rise this coming election."
     Sen. Karl Rhoads, Chair, Senate Committee Judiciary, said, "Considering the magnitude of the change to our voting system, things are going well. I anticipate there will be hiccups and the Legislature, the Office of Elections and the county clerks will have to make adjustments as we roll out the new system."
     Read Act 136: capitol.hawaii.gov/session2019/bills/GM1238_.PDF.

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CLOSURES OF RECYCLING AND SOLID WASTE TRANSFER STATIONS for the holiday season are as follows: Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 28; Christmas Day, Wednesday, Dec. 25; and New Year's Day, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020.
     County of Hawaiʻi asks the public "for your kōkua. Please do not litter or illegally dump any materials at the closed Recycling and Solid Waste Transfer Stations."
     Questions? Contact the Solid Waste Administrative Office at 961-8270.

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USGS HVO and Department of the Interior Office of Aviation staff prepare the sampling mechanism (on blue tarp) and 
inspect the Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) just before it took off to collect water from the Halemaʻumaʻu crater lake. 
Brightly-colored flagging tape tied to a cable attached to the UAS indicated depth as the sampling tool was lowered into 
the water. The Oct. 26 UAS water collection flight was conducted with permission from and in coordination with 
Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. DOI-OAS photo by J. Adams
PONDERING THE POND: What Halema‘uma‘u Water Chemistry Tells Us is the subject of this week's Volcano Watch, written by U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and affiliates:
     In the tradition of HVO founder Thomas Jaggar's innovative field methods, HVO recently used a cutting-edge technique to sample the Halema‘uma‘u water lake deep within Kīlauea's collapsed summit crater.
     Crater lakes occur in many volcanoes around the world, including Poas (Costa Rica), Kawah Ijen (Indonesia), and Whakaari/White Island (New Zealand). But water in Halema‘uma‘u is a first in written history for Kīlauea, spurring interest both locally and globally.
     The water has risen about 1 meter (1 yard) per week since first spotted on July 25. Initially, HVO was limited to remote observations of lake size, color, and surface temperature. As the lake grew, HVO began formulating a plan to sample the water. The lake's chemistry could reveal where the water was coming from and what it might mean for degassing and potential hazards at Kīlauea's summit.
     After much discussion, HVO and other USGS scientists, Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park staff, and helicopter and Unmanned or Unoccupied Aircraft Systems (UAS) pilots decided that a UAS was the best option for sampling and would be attempted.
     Our opportunity came just after the lake's 3-month anniversary on October 26, when a USGS UAS successfully collected about 750 milliliters (25 ounces) of water from the lake. The sample was then shipped to mainland USGS laboratories for sophisticated analyses.
Water collected from the lake at the bottom of Halema‘uma‘u is prepared for laboratory analyses at the USGS California 
Volcano Observatory. Results thus far reveal chemistry indicative of complex reactions between the water, 
magmatic gases, and Kīlauea's basaltic rocks. USGS photo by S. Peek, October 2019
     Results thus far indicate an acidic lake, with a pH of 4.2 (neutral is pH 7). Interestingly, most volcanic crater lakes have a pH of less than 3.5 (more acidic) or higher than 5 (less acidic), which places the Halema‘uma‘u lake's pH squarely in the uncommon middle range. However, that might result from the lake's young age and ongoing growth.
     Mathematical modeling performed prior to the lake's appearance predicted that groundwater could flow into Halema‘uma‘u once the area had cooled enough after the 2008-2018 lava lake drained away. So, it was not entirely a surprise when water began to pond in the crater.
     But, it's important to note that Halema‘uma‘u is where most summit sulfur dioxide (SO2) degassing takes place, and that SO2 dissolves readily in water.
     As water flows underground toward the now-cooling crater, it dissolves SO2 rising from magma below. This leads to high concentrations of sulfate ions in the lake – 53,000 milligrams per liter – and a tendency towards a more acidic pH.
     However, that acidic water reacts chemically with Kīlauea's basaltic rock, which makes the lake less acidic (raises the pH) and results in high concentrations of magnesium in the water. Basalt is classified as a mafic rock due to its large amount of magnesium and iron (Mg and Fe) in addition to other elements, such as sodium and potassium. The ratios of magnesium to sodium and of sodium to potassium in the lake water are similar to those ratios in Kīlauea's basalt, which is further evidence of chemical reactions between the water and rocks.
The hot, green pond dwarfs the drone that took the sample of water on Oct. 26. USGS photo
     Calcium concentrations are not very high in the water sample; calcium is instead combining with sulfate ions to form solid minerals that precipitate from the water. Iron is also likely forming various minerals, contributing to the lake's yellowish colors.
     Complex gas/rock reactions result in Kīlauea's lake water being chemically different from groundwater in a research well south of Halema‘uma‘u and from rainwater. Testing of oxygen and hydrogen that form the water molecules indicate that the lake water was originally rain that percolated into the subsurface where it became groundwater and the chemistry changed.
     The Halemaʻumaʻu lake is still rising. The current pH reflects the balance between incoming groundwater and the degree of SO2 degassing from below. If the lake level stabilizes, or the amount of SO2 changes, the pH may also change. At Mount Pinatubo (Phillipines), after its cataclysmic 1991 eruption, a crater lake formed with a nearly-neutral pH but became more acidic with increased SO2 degassing and later volcanic activity.
     Chemical analyses confirm that the Halemaʻumaʻu crater lake dissolves magmatic SO2. This implies that HVO's measured SO2 emission rates (about 30 tonnes per day) underestimate the total outgassed SO2 at Kīlauea. Without the lake, SO2 emissions from the summit would likely be higher.
     This finding is important given that an increasing SO2 emission rate can indicate shallowing magma. Now, lake sulfate concentrations may be a new clue to changing conditions at Kīlauea. Accordingly, we hope that this first water sample is not our last.
On left, the drone lowered a rope with a container on it into the pond. The flags let operators judge how deep the sample container was in the water. On right, a thermal image from the sampling. USGS photos
     Volcano Activity Updates
     See Mauna Loa update on yesterday's blog.
     Kīlauea Volcano is not erupting and its USGS Volcano Alert level remains at NORMAL. Monitoring data have shown no significant changes over the past week. Rates of earthquake activity or seismicity across the volcano remain largely steady. Sulfur dioxide emission rates are low at the summit and below detection limits at Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō and the lower East Rift Zone. The water pond at the bottom of Halemaʻumaʻu continues to slowly expand and deepen.
     Ten earthquakes with three or more felt reports occurred in Hawaiʻi this past week: six quakes with magnitudes between 1.2 and 4.9 generally located 26 km (16 mi) west of Pepeʻekeo and at 30 km (19 mi) depth on Nov. 11 between 5:24 and 8:34 a.m.;  two quakes with magnitudes 1.2 and 2.7 located 24-28 km (15-17 mi) east of Hōnaunau-Nāpōʻopoʻo at shallow depths on Nov. 9 at 6:09 and 1:39 a.m.; a magnitude-3.4 quake 10 km (6 mi) north of Waimea at 23 km (14 mi) depth on Nov. 9 at 5:48 a.m.; and a magnitude-2.8 quake 4 km (2 mi) southeast of Hōnaunau-Nāpōʻopoʻo at 10 km (6 mi) depth on Nov. 8 at 10:56 a.m.
     Visit volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo for past Volcano Watch articles, Kīlauea and Mauna Loa updates, volcano photos, maps, recent earthquake info, and more. Call 808-967-8862 for Kīlauea updates or 808-967-8866 for Mauna Loa updates. Email questions to askHVO@usgs.gov.

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
See monthly and weekly Kaʻū and Volcano Events, Meetings, Entertainment, Exercise, and Meditation at kaucalendar.com.

Hi‘iaka & Pele, Sunday, Nov. 17, 9:30-11:30a.m., Kahuku Unit, HVNP. Free, moderate, one-mile walk. nps.gov/havo

P&R T-Ball League Registration, Nov. 18 - Jan. 6, Kahuku Park. Ages 5-6. Athletic shoes required. Program takes place Jan. 13 - Apr. 16, day and time TBA. 929-9113, hawaiicounty.gov/departments/parks-and-recreation/recreation

Nature Wreath Registration, Nov. 18-25, program takes place Tuesday, Nov. 26, 3-4p.m. Ages 6-14. 929-9113, hawaiicounty.gov/departments/parks-and-recreation/recreation

Scholastic Book Fair, Tuesday, Nov. 19, Open to public: 7:30-8a.m. and 2:07-3:30p.m.; Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2:07-7p.m.; Thursday, Nov. 21, 7:30a.m.-3:30-p.m.; and Friday, Nov. 22, 7:30a.m.-2p.m., Nā‘ālehu Elementary School Library.

Hawai‘i County Council Mtgs., Tuesday, Nov. 19 (Committees), Wednesday, Nov. 18, (Council), Kona. Ka‘ū residents can participate via videoconferencing at Nā‘ālehu State Office Building. Agendas at hawaiicounty.gov

Cultural Understanding through Art and the Environment: Ti Leaf Lei Making with Jelena Clay, Tuesday, Nov. 19, 11a.m.-1p.m., Volcano Art Center. Pre-registration required; class size limited. $10 per person supply fee. 967-8222, volcanoartcenter.org

Ocean View Community Association Board of Directors Mtg., Wednesday, Nov. 20, 12:30-1:30p.m., Ocean View Community Center. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Nāʻālehu School Family Reading Night, Wednesday, Nov. 20, 6-7p.m., Nāʻālehu School Cafeteria. Family reading, make & take activities, and snacks provided. Free.

Ka‘ū Food Basket, Thursday, Nov. 21, 11a.m.-noon, Pāhala Community Center. 928-3102

Volcano Friends Feeding Friends, Thursday, Nov. 21, 4-6p.m., Cooper Center, Volcano Village. Free community dinner for all. Additional packaged goods to take home for those in need. Donations and volunteers encouraged. 967-7800, thecoopercenter.org

Nāʻālehu School Family Reading Night, Thursday, Nov. 21, 6-7p.m., Ocean View Community Center. Family reading, make & take activities, and snacks provided. Free. 939-7033, ovcahi.org

Forest Restoration Project, Friday, Nov. 22, 8:30a.m.-3p.m., HVNP. 12+; under 18 require adult co-signature. Pre-registration required - include first and last names, email address, and phone number of each participant. Organized by Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Patty Kupchak, 352-1402, forest@fhvnp.org, fhvnp.org

Cultural Understanding through Art and the Environment: Guided Cultural Tour of the Ni‘aulani Forest, Friday, Nov. 22, 9:30-11a.m., Volcano Art Center. Kumu Hula Ryan McCormack leads. Tour focuses on Hawaiian protocol, traditional chants, history, and lifeways, as they relate to the native forest ecosystem. Free; open to public. Spaced is limited, reservations suggested. 967-8222, volcanoartcenter.org

Christmas in the Country featuring 20th Annual Invitational Wreath Exhibit, daily, Nov. 22 through Dec. 31, Volcano Art Center Gallery. Free; park entrance fees apply. 967-7565, volcanoartcenter.org

Dances of Universal Peace, Friday, Nov. 22, 6-7:30p.m., Methodist Church hall, across from Nā‘ālehu Post Office. Fun, easy to learn dances from many traditions, evoking peace. Donations welcome. No registration necessary. 939-9461, hualaniom2@yahoo.com

Realms and Divisions, Saturday, Nov. 23, 9:30-11:30a.m., Kahuku Unit, HVNP. Free, moderately difficult, two-mile, hike. Bring snack. nps.gov/havo/

Nā‘ālehu Elementary School Friend-Raiser, Saturday, Nov. 23, 10a.m.-2p.m., Nā‘ālehu Elementary School. Friendship building activities with food, games – including bounce house, splash booth, and face painting – prizes, and more.

Saturday Thanksgiving Dinner, Saturday, Nov. 23, 10a.m., St. Jude's Episcopal Church, Ocean View. 939-7000, stjudeshawaii.org 

Blue Tattoo Band, Saturday, Nov. 23, 7-10p.m., Kīlauea Military Camp's Lava Lounge, in HVNP. Open to authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Free; park entrance fees apply. kilaueamilitarycamp.com

P&R Track & Field Practice Registration, through Wednesday, Nov. 20Kahuku Park. Ages 6-14. Athletic shoes required. Program takes place Dec. 2 - Feb. 8, day and time TBA. 929-9113, hawaiicounty.gov/departments/parks-and-recreation/recreation

Vote for Izaiah "Bobby" Pilanca-Emmsley of rthe Wedemeyer Award - Two-Way Player of the Year, at khon2.com/uncategorized/vote-2019-cover2-hawaii-high-school-football-awards/. Voting remains open through Monday, Nov. 25. The winners will be announced on Thanksgiving by the L.A. Rams. Pilanca-Emmsley is the only candidate from Kaʻū. Fans can vote for six of the seven awards presented.

Vendor Booth Space is Available for the Kamahalo Craft Fair. The 12th annual event will be held Thanksgiving weekend, Friday, Nov. 299 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, Nov. 30, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Cooper Center. Booths are open for crafters with quality homemade and homegrown products. Food vendors must prepare all food items in a certified kitchen and must have a Department of Health permit displayed prominently at their booth. Application online at thecoopercenter.org. Direct questions to 936-9705 or kilaueatutu@gmail.com.

Tūtū & Me Home Visiting Program is a free service to Pāhala families with keiki, birth to five years old. This caregiver support program offers those taking care of young keiki "a compassionate listening ear, helpful parenting tips and strategies, fun and exciting activities, and wonderful educational resources" from Tūtū & Me Traveling Preschool. Home visits are one hour in length, two to four times per month, for 12 to 15 visits. Snacks are provided. See pidfoundation.org or call Tata Compehos and Melody Espejo at 808-938-1088.

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.