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Sunday, January 26, 2020

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Sunday, January 26, 2020

Chinese New Year came to Kaʻū last night with parties and fireworks in neighborhoods. In Hilo, David Corrigan of Big
Island Video News documented the Lion Dance for this Year of the Rat. See the video. Image from Big Island Video News

A THIRTEEN DOLLAR AN HOUR MINIMUM WAGE BY 2024 "is not a 'good first step.' It's actually a step backward," says Gary Hooser, founder of Hawaiʻi Alliance for Progressive Action and the Pono Initiative. The former state Senator released a statement this past week, saying, "Anyone working 40 hours a week deserves to earn a wage sufficient to provide a dry and safe place to sleep, three meals a day, and basic health care." Hooser was referring to the joint state Senate, House of Representatives, and Governor's proposal calling for stepping up the minimum wage from $10.10 per hour over time.
     He noted that the state Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism "has determined that for a single person without children the hourly wage needed to simply subsist is approximately $17.50 per hour (plus or minus depending on the island, etc). Note this is the State of Hawaiʻi's official subsistence wage and includes no-frills whatsoever… just the basics of staying alive."
     Hooser linked the wages to Hawaiʻi suffering the second-highest homeless rate per capita in
the United States. "Our current minimum wage sits at $10.10 per hour and nearly 50 percent of our residents live on the very edge of poverty. Almost everyone is working two jobs or more, simply etching out a life devoid of the extras, so many of us take for granted. Thank god we have our warm weather and beautiful natural environment to help get us through the days."
Former state Sen. Gary Hooser says a $13 an hour minimum
wage by 2024 would not
help enough in uplifting working people
 living in poverty in Hawai`i. 
Photo from GaryHooser.co
     Hooser pointed out that the Governor, House, and Senate, with much fanfare, announced as a "good first step" their plan to increase Hawaiʻi's minimum wage to $13 per hour by 2024. Hooser said, "Let's do the math. In their own press release, the Legislature and the Governor talk of studies that show how single individuals and families are struggling to make $28,296 to $77,052 a year.
     "Unfortunately, the $13 an hour they propose by 2024 doesn't actually add up to helping anyone get even to that lowest threshold; $13 an hour, 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year, adds up to only $27,040. The inadequacy of the $13 per hour offer is even more apparent when you calculate the inflation which will accrue between now and 2024.
     "Remember, a subsistence wage now is $17.50 per hour and nearly half of our population lives on the edge of poverty. And here we are listening to the magnanimous offer of $13 – in 2024." Hooser said that the most recent "position" of the Hawaiʻi Senate (via House Bill 1191 SD2) was $15 per hour by 2023. "So no, $13 per hour in 2024 is not a good first step - unless, of course, the intent is to step backward. And no, the other elements of the package (tax credits and housing initiatives) do not replace the basic need to pay people fair wages for a fair day's work.
     "A 'good first step' is allowing legislators to publicly vote on what a clear and strong majority have said they publicly support, which is at least $15 per hour. An even better first step would be passing a measure that reaches the $17 target and includes annual cost of living increases. That is the step Hawaiʻi's working families need and the only step that will ensure they eventually achieve a true living wage."
     Concerning small businesses that fear negative impacts from having to increase their workers' wages, Hooser said they "need only look at the recent history in Hawaiʻi for reassurance.When Hawaiʻi's minimum wage was increased from $7.25 to $10.10, there were no increases in bankruptcy, no increases in unemployment, and no increases in inflation (outside the normal trend). It is well past the time that everyone in Hawaiʻi who works 40 hours a week can afford a dry, safe place to live, eat three meals a day, and go to the doctor when they are sick. Anything less is immoral and unacceptable."
     Hooser suggests contacting legislators. State Senators list and contact info is here. State Representatives list and contact info is here. Visit Living Wage Hawaiʻi and Raise Up Hawaiʻi.

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THIS IS THE YEAR OF THE RAT, with Hawaiʻi residents of Chinese ancestry visiting family members and giving out gifts in red packages. Fireworks sounded across Kaʻū. Some traveled to Hilo for a Lion Dance.
     Rats are known for wisdom, intelligence, ability to adapt, their quick wit, charm, sociable personalities, and even artistic talents. People born in 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, and and 2020 came into this world in the Year of the Rat.

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VOLCANO ART CENTER AND GALLERY activities for February have been announced. VAC is a non-profit educational organization created in 1974 to promote, develop, and perpetuate the artistic and cultural heritage of Hawai‘i's people and environment through activities in the visual, literary, and performing arts. Visit volcanoartcenter.org.
     VAC's newest series of monthly programs, Cultural Understanding Through Art & the Environment, features classes on block printing, lauhala weaving, ti leaf lei making, and more. A free guided Cultural Forest Tour, and a Mele and Hula ‘Auana performance are also slated. Visit the website events calendar for the full lineup.
     The VAC Gallery exhibit, Sharp Turns – The Creative Art of Woodturning, featuring the works of Aaron Hammer and Mark and Karen Stebbins, continues through Feb. 16. A live woodturning demonstration at the Gallery happens on Saturday, February 1, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
     Try indigo dyeing in the Indigo Fundamentals workshop with Wai‘ala Ahn and Justin Tripp on Saturday, Feb. 1 at 12:30 p.m.
     Want to learn some native plants, help restore a beautiful rainforest, and get some exercise? Tim Tunison leads Forest Work Day and Plant Identification Training on Saturday, Feb. 1 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. 
     Hula Voices at VAC Gallery on Thursday, Feb. 6, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., presents an engaging, intimate talk story session with Hawai‘i Island kumu hula and features Volcano musician Joe Camacho.
     The 16th annual Love the Arts fundraiser gala on Saturday, Feb. 8, will be held from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. The theme this year is The Roaring 2020s, highlighted by unique decorations, decadent food, fine wines and beer, and dancing. The evening also features appearances by members of Harmony on Tap and opera singer D'Andrea Pelletier. Live and silent auctions will provide attendees an opportunity to bid on artwork, jewelry, hotel stays, restaurants, local products, services, and gift certificates to businesses and attractions. Tickets are $70, $65 for VAC Members, and can be purchased at VAC's Niʻaulani Campus in the village or Gallery in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, online at volcanoartcenter.org/classes-and-workshops/purchase-tickets-to-vac-events, or by calling (808) 967-8222. Gala tickets also provide free admission to the LTA Valentine's Day Dance held the following weekend on Saturday, Feb. 15 – see info below.
     Get back to the basics in the Zentangle: Basics workshop with Ellen O'Dunn on Saturday, Feb. 15 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
     Paint Your Own Silk Scarf with Patti Pease Johnson returns on Saturday, Feb. 15 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Enrolling a loved one in the class or the finished scarf itself that you'll create in class makes a great Valentine's Day gift, states the announcement.
     Valentine's Dance on Saturday, Feb. 15 will be held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Learn the Charleston, the Lindy Hop, and more.
     This month's Hula Kahiko performance at 10:30 a.m. happens on Saturday, Feb. 15 with Kumu Hula Keala Ching with Nā Wai Iwi Ola and Nā Mea Hula with Loke Kamanu & ʻOhana from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at VAC Gallery. 
     Join Claudia McCall for the Fused Glass Basics workshop on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 11 a.m.
     Learn Mixed Media Photo Encaustic techniques with Mary Milelzcik on Saturday, Feb. 29 at 10 a.m. The class is slated for beginner to intermediate students.

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 daily, weekly, and monthly recurring Kaʻū and Volcano Events, Meetings, Entertainment, Exercise, Meditation, and more at kaucalendar.com.

Kaʻū Winter Sports Schedule
Girls Basketball
Tue. and Wed., Jan. 28 and 29 BIIF @Civic
Wed. thru Sat., Feb. 5-8 HHSAA on Oʻahu

Boys Basketball
Mon., Jan. 27 @Kamehameha
Tue. and Wed., Feb. 4 and 5 BIIF @ Kealakehe
Thu. thru Sat., Feb. 13-15 HHSAA on Oʻahu

Wed. thru Sat., Feb. 5-8 Girls HHSAA on Oʻahu
Sat., Feb. 1 and 8 Boys BIIF
Thu. thru Sat., Feb. 13-15 Boys HHSAA on Oʻahu

Sat., Feb. 1 @Hilo
Sat., Feb. 8 BIIF @Konawaena
Fri. and Sat., Feb. 21 and 22 HHSAA

Fri., Jan. 31 and Sat., Feb. 1 BIIF @Kamehameha
Fri. and Sat., Feb. 14 and 15 on Maui

Cultural Understanding Through Art & the Environment: Kapa Aloha ʻĀina, the fabric of Hawaiʻi with Puakea Forester, Monday, Jan. 27 – fourth Monday, monthly – 2:30-4:30p.m.Volcano Art Center. Pre-registration required; class size limited. $10 per person supply fee. 967-8222, volcanoartcenter.org

After Dark in the Park – Seismicity of the 2018 Kīlauea Volcano Eruption, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 7-8p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium. HVO seismologist Brian Shiro recounts the 2018 earthquake story, including how HVO adapted its techniques to monitor the events, and describes current levels of seismicity and HVO’s ongoing efforts to improve seismic monitoring. Free; Park entrance fees apply. 985-6101, nps.gov/havo

H.O.V.E. Road Maintenance Corp. Board Mtg., Tuesday, Jan. 28 – last Tuesday, monthly – 10a.m., H.O.V.E. RMC office, 92-8979 Lehua Lane, Ocean View. 929-9910, hoveroad.com

Ka‘ū Food Pantry, Tuesday, Jan. 28 – last Tuesday, monthly – 11:30a.m.-1p.m., St. Jude's Episcopal Church in Ocean View. Volunteers welcome. Dave Breskin, 319-8333

Public Information Mtg. by County of Hawai‘i Department of Environmental Management's Solid Waste Division, Wednesday, Jan. 29 at Nā‘ālehu Clubhouse, 95-5635 Māmalahoa Hwy, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The public is encouraged to attend and give input. The Solid Waste Division will be discussing the facilities' operating days and the possibility of modifying the current schedule for transfer stations. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call the Solid Waste Division Office at 961-8270 for more.

Lava Tubes of Ocean View, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center. Presented by Peter and Annie Bosted, it will include presentation of images of the underground in the Ocean View area – especially an extensive system in the Kahuku Unit of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, which abuts HOVE – and Hawaiian lava tubes in general. Those who want to know more about what's going on under their feet, and those curious about lava tubes are invited to the free presentation, along with family and friends, said the Bosteds.

Ka‘ū Food Basket, Thursday, Jan. 30 – last Thursday, monthly – 11a.m.-noonPāhala Community Center. 928-3102

The Next Mauna Loa Eruption and the 2018 Kīlauea Eruption talk, Thursday, Jan. 30, 6p.m.Ocean View Community Center, 92-8924 Leilani Circle. To close out 11th annual Volcano Awareness month, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge Tina Neal and Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Administrator Talmadge Magno will talk about the current status of Mauna Loa, hazards of future eruptions, experiences from Kīlauea 2018 eruption, preparing for next Mauna Loa eruption, and how communities can stay informed. The meeting is free and open to public. More info at "HVO News" at volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo/, (808) 967-8844, or askHVO@usgs.gov.

Volcano Friends Feeding Friends, Thursday, Jan. 30 – last Thursday, monthly – 4-6p.m.Cooper CenterVolcano Village. Free community dinner for all. Additional packaged goods to take home for those in need. Donations and volunteers encouraged. 967-7800, thecoopercenter.org

Kahuku Coffee Talk – Makahiki: A Celebrated Season, Friday, Jan. 31 – last Friday, monthly – 9:30-11a.m., Kahuku Unit Visitor Contact Station. Free. nps.gov/havo


Stewardship at the Summit, Saturday, Feb. 1 and 15 and Friday, Feb. 7, 21, and 28. Meet project leaders Paul and Jane Field at Kīlauea Visitor Center at 8:45 a.m. Volunteer to help remove invasive, non-native plant species that prevent native plants from growing in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, a World Heritage Site. Wear sturdy hiking shoes and long pants. Bring a hat, rain gear, day pack, snacks and water. Gloves and tools are provided. Under 18? Parental or guardian accompaniment or written consent is required. Free; Park entrance fees apply. nps.gov/havo

Indigo Fundamentals Workshop, Saturday, Feb. 1 at 12:30p.m. Indigo dyeing with Wai‘ala Ahn and Justin Tripp. volcanoartcenter.org

Forest Work Day and Plant Identification Training with Tim Tunison, Saturday, Feb. 1, 1-3p.m. Learn some native plants, help restore a beautiful rainforest, and get some exercise. volcanoartcenter.org

Super Bowl Party, Sunday, Feb. 2, Lava Lounge at Kīlauea Military Camp. Doors open at 11 a.m. with kick-off at 1:30 p.m., 'til pau. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. Located in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, KMC is open to all authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. For more information call 967-8365 after 4 p.m.

Apply for Mosaics of Science by Monday, Feb. 3. Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park's 12-week paid summer internship position is designed to engage university students and recent graduates with on-the-ground work experience in the National Park Service. A $4,800 stipend, and all travel costs are covered, including a week-long career workshop in WashingtonD.C. to meet with NPS managers.
     The internship is open to U.S. citizens and permanent legal residents ages 18-30, and to military veterans up to age 35. Funding is provided under a cooperative agreement for youth conservation activities as part of the Public Lands Corps program, which mandates that these age ranges are followed. 
     The selected intern will assist with the development of education curriculum for Kīpukapuaulu and Pu‘u Loa trails in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.
     For more information, contact Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Education Specialist Jody Anastasio by email at jody_anastasio@nps.gov. To apply go to go.nps.gov/mosaics or mosaicsinscience.org.

T-Ball and Coach Pitch Baseball League: Ocean View Team - Mondays and Wednesdays, Kahuku Park. Nā‘ālehu Team - Tuesdays and Thursdays, Nā‘ālehu Park. Pāhala Team (seeking coaches) - attend Nā‘ālehu practice. T-Ball, 3:30-4:30pm, ages 5-6. Coach Pitch, 4:30-6p.m., ages 7-8. Programs take place through April 16. Wear cleats or tennis shoes, bring a glove if possible. Extras gloves available for use. All skills and genders welcome. $35 per teammate. See Ka‘ū Youth Baseball on Facebook. Josh or Elizabeth Crook, 345-0511

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 808-938-1088.

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