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Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Wednesday, June 3, 2020

The yellow tang is about 85 percent depleted and not bred in captivity. Hawaiʻi is one of the most popular
places to catch it to sell to aquarium fish dealers. See story below. Photo from Waikiki Aquarium

HAWAIʻI'S FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER PETER WOLFF signed on to a statement released today concerning the death of George Floyd and calling for equal justice. Federal public and community defenders from around the country signed it:
     "The moral arc of the universe, as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr said, bends towards justice. And yet we all saw that arc snap again under a police officer's white knee on George Floyd's Black neck for eight minutes and forty-six seconds. That knee as been placed on too many Black necks before, and too often, without repercussions.
Hawaiʻi's Federal Public Defender
Peter Wolff joins colleagues in speaking
out on racism and fair treatment of
defendants in the courts.
     "This time must be different. While we can kneel in solidarity with Mr. Floyd, we also must stand up and demand that racism, overt and implicit, be acknowledged and confronted.
     "As federal public and community defenders, we represent the overwhelming majority of those charged with crimes in federal court - most of whom are minorities, of all colors and orientations. We have witnessed 'wars' on drugs and crime become dog whistles for hate and racism. Intentions to make communities safe are hijacked by other insidious agents. The war on crime is a new Jim Crow that permeates our criminal justice system. Daily, we see charges that are too harsh, sentences that are too long, and a system that turns a blind eye to oppressive structural racism because it seems to fear 'to much justice.'
     "George Floyd died face down, gasping and begging to breathe. It is well beyond time for us to say, 'Enough.'
     "We are better than this; we can be just and empathetic. We can do what is right and what is moral. We can keep communities safe by holding out our hand to help, aware of our own failings and biases.
     "And in this crucible of anger, we take a breath, and begin to repair the moral arc and bend it back towards justice.
     "As federal defenders, we stand with many like George Floyd who have been held down and denied their humanity. It is our job, our calling. It is our privilege. For George Floyd and all of our clients, we renew our longstanding commitment to fight daily for equal justice."
Reef fish collecting for aquariums is against the law in Hawaiʻi Island
waters, while proposals remain before the Board of Land &
Natural Resources. Photo from Japan Times
     In Minneapolis where Floyd was killed, three officers are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder. The charge against the officer who held down Floyd has been increase from third to second degree murder. He is also charged with second-degree manslaughter.
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A FINE OF $200 FOR ILLEGAL AQUARIUM FISH COLLECTING drew disappointment yesterday from the state Division of Aquatic Resources and the organization For the Fishes.
     The fine was levied against Wayne Newman, of Kailua-Kona. Tyron T. Terazono, of Kealakekua, faced a later court date. The pair and another man were caught with a small fish net, other aquarium fish collecting gear, and 550 various species of fish that sell to aquarium stores. Officers from the state Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement cited two of the fishermen and seized the Force 24 motorboat and its trailer, along with aquarium fish-catching gear. The $200 fine came from an environmental court judge yesterday, June 2.
     The three men associated with the boat also face fines from the Board of Land & Natural Resources, which oversees the Division of Aquatic Resources. 
     The Division of Aquatic Resources responded, saying it "is disappointed that the violation of multiple State Fisheries Laws resulted in a no-contest plea and a $200 fine. We estimate the retail market value of the illegal catch is in excess of $37,000 for this single incident. The $200 Court sentence doesn't adequately match the seriousness of the crime or discourage illegal activity in the future. Unfortunately, because this was a first offense, the maximum penalty is a $100 fine for each violation. The DLNR is looking at additional penalties through a civil enforcement action.
     "Our natural resources hold incredible ecological, cultural, and economic value. The maximum fine amount, as reflected in today's court decision, does not reflect the value of the natural resources that can be lost when these laws are violated."
     For the Fishes, a group which protects coral and fish, responded: "What's the value of our reef wildlife? In the eyes of state courts, apparently less than 40 cents per animal. A $200 fine, plus court fees, was the sole penalty issued today by the South Kohala Court against one of two defendants charged with poaching 550 reef fish for the aquarium pet trade. The initial charges included collection of prohibited species, illegal gear (fine mesh net), in addition to failure to hold required licenses and permits. All but two of these charges were dropped through negotiations between the County Prosecuting Attorney and the defendant, who pleaded no contest and who represented himself in court today. The defendant could have faced petty misdemeanor charges which carry penalties upwards of $1,000 per count and up to 30 days in jail."
     Hawaiian cultural practitioner Mike Nakachi, said, "Today's outcome for the one defendant who showed up was far from just, far from effective prosecution, and flew in the face of the native Hawaiian community, who, with help from others, have provided dozens of tips and observations of illegal aquarium collection and related activities."
     For the Fishes states that "All three defendants, one, who for unknown reasons, wasn't charged criminally, contested their administrative case before the BLNR on May 22nd and face fines exceeding $550,000 and revocation of their Commercial Marine Licenses."

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

The burned-out clubhouse and restaurant at
Volcano Golf Course. Photo by Julia Neal
KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOL FILED SUIT AGAINST VOLCANO GOLF COURSE OPERATORS in mid-May, according to a story in  Wednesday's Hawaiʻi Tribune Herald. The story by Michael Brestovansky, quotes the complaint filed in Honolulu's First Circuit Court. It asks for an injunction requiring the operators to return management of the 156 acres to Kamehameha Schools without making any changes to the property. The clubhouse was recently gutted by a fire.
     On-site operators of the property told The Kaʻū Calendar after the fire that the plan was to raze the building and construct a new clubhouse and restaurant with insurance money.
     The property was leased to Volcano Golf & Country Club from 1969 to 2024. In 1999, the lease transferred to a related entity called Hawaiian International Sporting Club. According to the Tribune-Herald story, on April 29, HISC's Shigeyuki Tachibana told Kamehameha Schools that HISC would shut down immediately, four years ahead of the end of the lease, without rebuilding the clubhouse.
     According to the story, the complaint also includes letters from Tachibana, over the years, in which he claimed ownership of the golf course for HISC and threatened to destroy the property should Kamehameha fail to cooperate in negotiations. The complaint asks the court to rule that HISC has breached its duty to operate and maintain the course.
     The Tribune-Herald story quotes a letter to the newspaper from Alapaki Nahaleʻa, the Hawaiʻi Island senior director of Kamehameha's community engagement and resources, saying that Kamehameha wants to take back the golf course for the "health, safety, and well-being of the surrounding community." The complaint asks for HISC to be barred from the property.
Golfers play while Kamehameha Schools goes to
court to retrieve control of Volcano Golf Course.
Photo by Julia Neal
     In the meantime, golfers, walkers, and runners are using the course at no cost.
     See more at Hawaiʻi Tribune-Herald.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

OKK WILL DISTRIBUTE KŪPUNA PACKS from Vibrant Hawaiʻi and Hawaiʻi Rise Foundation. Distribution of the canned goods, noodles, oatmeal, other foods, soap, and toilet paper is for kūpuna only, said ʻO Kaʻū Kākou President Wayne Kawachi. The distribution will be at the Park-n-Ride, across from Mālama Market in Ocean View, at 1 p.m. this Friday.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

EASIER APPROVAL FOR SIGNS along county roads is available. County of Hawaiʻi Department of Public Works Building Division released a statement saying that signs that do not meet Chapter 3, Sign Code, and require a variance, will first be considered by the Director of Public Works for approval, instead of going through the County Council. Download the new Sign Code Variance application, 
     According to the county, changes are intended to reduce costs and time for applicants. If the variance is denied, the Board of Appeals can reconsider. The public will also have an opportunity to provide feedback through a notification prior to review and determination. 
     For questions and concerns contact the Department of Public Works Building Division at 961-8331 or cohbuild@hawaiicounty.gov.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

There is one reported case of COVID-19 in Kaʻū. White is zero 
cases. Yellow is one to five cases. Light orange is six to ten cases.
Dark orange (not pictured) is 11 to 20 cases. Red is 21 to 50 cases.
Hawaiʻi Department of Health map
NO NEW COVID-19 CASES ON HAWAIʻI ISLAND. One new case was reported on Oʻahu. All 81 cases on-island since the pandemic began are recovered.
     Since the pandemic began, Oʻhua has reported 423 cases, Kauaʻi 20 cases, and Maui County 119 cases (one case was removed today due to updated testing info). Statewide, 653 people have been confirmed positive for the virus since the pandemic began. Seventeen people have died – none on this island, where there was only one overnight hospitalization.
     The daily message from Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Director Talmadge Magno says, "On today's report of COVID-19, the number of active cases for Hawaii Island stands at zero. An active case is defined as an individual who has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and is being monitored by the Department of Health."
     He thanked Aloha Kona Urgent Care for providing free drive-thru COVID-19 testing in at St. Jude's in Kaʻū today, as well as Hawaiʻi National Guard and the County Task Force for helping."
     Magno said, "The Island and State have done very well in minimizing the spread of Coronavirus. This has allowed Hawaiʻi to go forward and has been identified by the Johns Hopkins University as tied with Montana for the lowest per capita infection rate in the Nation. Ongoing forward, know that the virus threat remains and we need to continue to follow the prevention policies of face coverings, distancing, and gatherings. A grateful thank you to the community of Hawaiʻi for doing your part to keep Hawaiʻi safe and together. Thank you for listening. Have a safe day in beautiful Hawaiʻi. This is your Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Agency."
     In the United States, more than 1.89 million cases have been confirmed. The death toll is over 109,000. Worldwide, more than 6.29 million have contracted COVID-19. The death toll is over 380,000.

directory for farms, ranches, takeout. Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is 
free, with 7,500 distributed on stands and to all postal addresses throughout 
Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano throughout the district. Read online at 
kaucalendar.com and facebook.com/kaucalendar. To advertise your 
business or your social cause, contact kaucalendarads@gmail.com.
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Free COVID-19 Screenings are at Bay Clinic during business hours, with appointment. Call 333-3600.
     The next drive-thru screening at Nāʻālehu Community Center will be held Wednesday, June 10 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Screening will be carried out by Aliʻi Health, with support from County of Hawai‘i COVID-19 Task Force, Premier Medical Group and Pathways Telehealth.
     A testing team from Aloha Critical Care in Kona will provide testing at St. Jude's every other Wednesday. The next date is June 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
     Wearing masks is required for everyone. Those visiting screening clinics will be asked to show photo ID, and any health insurance cards – though health insurance is not required to be tested. They are also asked to bring their own pen to fill in forms.
     To bypass the screening queue at community test sites, patients can call ahead to Pathways Telehealth, option 5 at 808-747-8321. The free clinic will also offer on-site screening to meet testing criteria. Physicians qualify those for testing, under the guidance of Center for Disease Control & Prevention and Hawaiʻi's COVID-19 Response Task Force.
     For further information, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.

Ocean View Swap Meet is open at Ocean View makai shopping center, near Mālama Market. Hours for patrons are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Vendor set-up time is 5 a.m. Masks are required for all vendors and patrons.

ʻO Kaʻū Kākou Market in Nāʻālehu is open three days per week – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday – from 8 a.m. to noon. The goal is no more than 50 customers on the grounds at a time. Vendor booths per day are limited to 25, with 30 feet of space between vendors. Masks and hand sanitizing are required to attend the market. Social distancing will be enforced.
     A wide selection of fresh vegetables and fruits, prepared take away foods, assorted added value foods, breads and baked goods, honey, cheese, grass-fed beef, fish, vegetable plants, masks, handmade soaps, coffee, and more are offered on various days. Contact Sue Barnett, OKK Market Manager, at 808-345-9374, for more and to apply to vend.

Volcano Farmers Market at Cooper Center on Wright Road, off of Old Volcano Highway, is open on Sundays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with much local produce, island beef, and prepared foods. Call 808-967-7800.

Free Breakfast and Lunch for Anyone 18 and Under is available at Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary and at Nāʻālehu Elementary on weekdays (no holidays) through Friday, July 17. Each youth must be present to receive a meal. Service is drive-up or walk-up, and social distancing rules (at least six feet away) are observed. Breakfast is served from 7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m., lunch from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Food is being delivered on Wednesdays to students in Green Sands, Discovery Harbour, and Ocean View.

St. Jude's Episcopal Church Soup Kitchen is open, with a modified menu and increased health & safety standards, every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Hot showers, the computer lab, and in-person services and bible studies are suspended. Services are posted online on Sundays at stjudeshawaii.org.

The Food Basket's ʻOhana Food Drop is available once a month at four Kaʻū and Volcano locations. People can receive a multi-day supply of shelf-stable and fresh food, depending on supply. Call The Food Basket at 933-6030 for Pāhala and Volcano or at 322-1418 for Nāʻālehu or Ocean View. Food can be picked up from 10 a.m. until pau – supplies run out – at:
     Nāʻālehu's Sacred Heart Church at 95-558 Mamālahoa Hwy was June 1; the July date will be announced later.
     Ocean View's Kahuku Park on Tuesday, June 8.
     Volcano's Cooper Center at 19-4030 Wright Road on  Wednesday, June 24.
     Pāhala's Kaʻū District Gym at 96-1149 Kamani Street on Tuesday, June 30.

On-Call Emergency Box Food Pantry is open at Cooper Center Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to noon. Call 967-7800 to confirm.

Enroll in Kua O Ka Lā's Hīpuʻu Virtual Academy for school year 2020-2021, grades four through eight. The Hawaiian Focused Charter School teaches with an emphasis on Hawaiian language and culture. The blended curriculum is offered through online instruction and community-based projects, with opportunities for face-to-face gatherings (with precautions), in an "Education with Aloha" environment.
     Kua O Ka Lā offers a specialized program that provides students with core curriculum, content area, and electives in-keeping with State of Hawaiʻi requirements. Combined with Native Hawaiian values, culture, and a place-based approach to education, from the early morning wehena – ceremonial school opening – Kua O Ka Lā students are encouraged to walk Ke Ala Pono – the right and balanced path.
     The school's website says Kua O Ka Lā has adopted Ke Ala Pono "to describe our goal of nurturing and developing our youth. We believe that every individual has a unique potential and that it is our responsibility to help our students learn to work together within the local community to create a future that is
pono – right." The school aims to provide students with "the knowledge and skills, through Hawaiian values and place-based educational opportunities, that prepare receptive, responsive, and self-sustaining individuals that live 'ke ala pono.'"
     See kuaokala.org to apply and to learn more about the school. Call 808-981-5866 or 808-825-8811, or email info@kuaokala.org for more.

Pāhala and Nāʻālehu Public Libraries are Open for Pick-Up Services Only. Nāʻālehu is open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to noon and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Pāhala is open Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Library patrons schedule Library Take Out appointment times to pick up their hold item(s) at their favorite libraries by going to HSPLS Library Catalog and placing a hold on any item(s) they want to borrow, or they may call their favorite library branch to place a hold with the library staff. After receiving a notice that item(s) are ready for pick up, patrons schedule a Library Take Out time at picktime.com/hspls. For patrons who placed holds during the closure, their item(s) are ready for pickup after the patron schedules a Library Take Out appointment. For more information, visit librarieshawaii.org.

Free Book Exchanges at the laundromats in Ocean View and Nāʻālehu are provided by Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries. Everyone is invited to take books they want to read. They may keep the books, pass them on to other readers, or return them to the Book Exchange to make them available to others in the community. The selection of books is replenished weekly at both sites.

Make Reservations for Father's Day at Crater Rim Café in Kīlauea Military Camp for Sunday, June 21 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Seating limited due to social distancing. Dinner also available to go. The main course is Prime Rib and Vegetable Alfredo Pasta Bake, with side dishes and dessert, for $27.95 per person. Call 967-8356 for dine-in reservations, to-go orders, and current event information. KMC is open to all authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply.

Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium Closed for Renovation through June 30. The Park is closed until further notice due to COVID-19 spread mitigation. A popular seven-and-a-half minute 2018 eruption video will be shown on a television in the exhibits area, once the Park and center reopen, and is available online for free download.

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