|Covid vaccines, like this one from Johnson & Johnson, are expected to be available to everyone|
eligible by the end of April or beginning of May. Photo from Johnson & Johnson
COVID VACCINATIONS FOR THOSE 60 AND OLDER will be available throughout Hawai‘i starting this Monday. Hawai‘i state Director of Health Libby Char told Civil Beat "she is optimistic the Aloha State is on track to offer a COVID-19 vaccine to everyone by May, meeting a goal set by President Biden for the nation." See Civilbeat.org.
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Total visitor spending in February 2021 was $385.3 million (-73.6%). This represented an average of $13.8 million per day, compared to $50.3 million per day in February 2020. U.S. West visitors spent $9.4 million per day (-52.2%). U.S. East visitors spent $4.1 million per day (-71.3%). Visitors from Japan spent $86.1 thousand per day (-98.5%). Visitors from Canada spent $80.6 thousand per day (-98.4%). Spending data for visitors from other markets were not available.
For both years, Hawai‘i's totals were more than double the national state averages: $2,664 in fiscal 2020 and $2,717 in fiscal 2019. Connecticut ranked second highest in fiscal 2020, at $5,396; followed by Massachusetts, $4,944; Delaware, $4,587; and New Jersey, $4,246. The five states with the lowest per-capita state tax quotients in fiscal 2020 were Michigan, $984; New Hampshire, $1,116; Nevada, $1,299; Florida, $1,443; and Missouri, $1,452.
"I hope these new findings will cause our state legislators to stop adding new taxes," said Keli'i Akina, institute president and CEO. "Everyone talks about the high cost of living in Hawai‘i and how it forces so many of our friends and family to leave for the mainland. But here we see one of the biggest reasons for that high cost of living: Hawai‘i's sky-high taxes.
"Especially now, in the midst of Hawai‘i's worst economic crisis in decades, we need our legislators to understand that that these high taxes are hurting our state. They are contributing to the state's net population loss and doctor shortage, discouraging investment, and making it impossible for people to thrive, raise families and enjoy living in our state."
In terms of county taxes, Hawai‘i's per-capita county tax quotient ranked 25th in the nation as of fiscal 2018, the most recent year for which data is available.
Hawai‘i's county property tax rates are relatively low by national standards, but the state's high property values ensure that Hawai‘i residents pay close to the national average. In fiscal 2018 the Hawai‘i total was $1,355, slightly below the national average of $1,674.
When state and county tax quotients are combined, Hawai‘i ranked fifth highest, as of fiscal 2018, at $7,319 per capita. No. 1 in 2018 was New York, at $9,822, followed by Connecticut, $8,487; North Dakota, $7,591; and New Jersey, $7,419. Grassroot Institute of Hawai‘i calculations of state and local taxes per capita FY 2018 - 2020," divides the state tax revenues of each state by their respective populations. It does not account for tax shifts due to out-of-state residents such as tourists or military.
HILO, WAIMEA-KOHALA AND KONA AIRPORTS WILL RECEIVE $10 MILLION in funding from Coronavirus Relief & Response Supplemental Appropriations. Congressman Kaialiʻi Kahele said today that the total for Hawaiʻi airports statewide is $26,795,585 from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
"Our airports require maintenance and timely improvements to remain open, safe, and operational for all of our residents and visitors who rely on them for travel, recreation, and access to emergency services," said Kahele, a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. "These funds will help
Here is the funding for the ten ariports in these islands: Waimea-Kohala Airport - $9,000; Hilo International Airport - $3,879,173 and Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport - $6,136,719· Kawaihāpai (Dillingham) Airfield - $9,000; Hana Airport - $9,000; Kalaupapa Airport - $9,000; Molokai Airport - $1,028,288; Lanai Airport - $1,026,894 Lihue Airport - $5,662,781; and Kahului Airport - $9,025,630.
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THE SIXTH ANNUAL PRINCE KUHIO DAY Ho'olaule'a on Friday will be an opportunity to show support and love for Kaʻū. The virtual event starts at 9 a.m., featuring Hawaiian music, hula, history and cultural demonstrations. Organizer Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū, is revitalizing efforts of a decades-long dream to build a Hawaiian cultural center for the people of Kaʻū and future generations; the hoʻolaule'a is meant to be a small-scale version of the larger vision.
Though usually in-person and live, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū decided to share a sampling of the hoʻolauleʻa experience virtually this year, showing videos of practitioners and entertainers with a lifelong connection to Kaʻū.
Ka'ū Keiki will open the program with E Ala E, while the Ka'ū Hawaiian Civic Club will educate viewers about Prince Kūhiō. Learn about building waʻa with Captain Kiko Johnston Kitazawa, wood carving with Uncle Bernard Waltjen, and coconut weaving with Kupuna Larry Loque, all while learning a little about their history and background. Get some insight into the arduous process of making an imu or follow along with Tiare-Lee Shibuya as she demonstrates how to make a tī leaf lei.
Relax with music from Kaʻū natives Ben Mejia and Bula and Gene Akamu, who will sing songs of Ka'ū and other favorites melodies. Lori Leiʻs Hula Studio, which served Kaʻū for decades, performs songs such as Ka Nani A'o Kaʻū, Ke Ala A Ke Jeep, Aloha Punaluʻu, Piano Ahiahi and more.
The event link will be posted at 8:30 a.m. at https://hanalaulimalahuiokau.org/prince-kuhio-day-event. "Check it out for a little or stay until the end, but please,stop by to share your support and love for Kaʻū," said Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū President Terry-Lee Shibuya. "The event may last as long as an hour or more, so be sure to stop by early."
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 required.
BUY LOCAL GIFTS ONLINE, IN-PERSON
VOLCANO SCHOOL OF ARTS & SCIENCES CALENDARS, t-shirts, and sweatshirts sales raise money for the school. Review the calendar at rb.gy/tmxzva. Order the Calendar using this form: rb.gy/ytekoz. Send payment or donations to VSAS PayPal, paypal.com/paypalme/VolcanoSchool. To buy t-shirts and sweatshirts, order from here: rb.gy/2a4cim. Send in order forms and payment to the main office: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785. For a printed copy of the order form to be mailed, contact Kaye at 985-9800, firstname.lastname@example.org. Contact Kanani at email@example.com for more information and assistance with ordering.
VOLCANO ART CENTER ONLINE, in person. Shop at Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gallery in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, open Wednesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Virtual Shopping Appointments offered via Skype or FaceTime. Book at volcanoartcenter.org/shop for $5. Shop online gallery 24/7. Orders shipped or free local pickup available. See the VAC Virtual Classroom, which features over 90 videos. See volcanoartcenter.org/events, call 967-8222.
PUNALUʻU BAKESHOP online at bakeshophawaii.com and in-person 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week in Nāʻālehu.
ALIʻI HAWAIʻI HULA HANDS COFFEE. Order by calling 928-0608 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
AIKANE PLANTATION COFFEE COMPANY. Order online at aikaneplantation.com. Call 808-927-2252
MIRANDA'S FARMS KAʻŪ COFFEE. Order online at mirandafarms.com or, in person at 73-7136 Mamalahoa Hwy, Nāʻālehu.
KUAHIWI RANCH STORE, in person. Shop weekdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, 11 am to 3 p.m. at 95-5520 Hwy 11. Locally processed grass-fed beef, live meat chickens, and feed for cattle, goats, sheep, chickens, horses, dogs, and pigs. Call 929-7333 of 938-1625, email email@example.com.
OCEAN VIEW EVANGELICAL COMMUNITY CHURCH holds services on Sundays beginning with Sing-Along on the Square at 10:15 a.m., followed by Sunday Morning Service at 11 a.m. In-person services following CDC Guidelines and Hawaii mandates by using hand sanitizer, wearing face masks and practicing social distancing.
Music and Sermons are posted to FaceBook.com/OVECC. Also see FaceBook.com/OVECC for more. The church campus for Ocean View Evangelical Community Church is 92-8977 Leilani Circle. firstname.lastname@example.org
HOPE DIA-MEND MINISTRIES holds outdoor services Sundays at 9:45 a.m. at 92-898 Ginger Blossom Lane in Ocean View. Masks and distancing required. For help and/or to donate, call or text Pam and Lance Ako at 808-937-6355, or call the Ministry at 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.
HELP FOR HEALTH & COVID TESTING
KAʻŪ HOSPITAL offers COVID testing referral from the ER, a physician or a Kaʻū Clinic health provider.
FREE DRIVE-THRU COVID Testing, Saturdays at Kea‘au High School in Puna, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays at Konawaena High School from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Civic Auditorium in Hilo from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (enter from Kuawa Street entrance). No co-pay, no insurance necessary, but bring insurance card if have. People do not have to have symptoms in order to be tested. Social distancing must be observed and face coverings must be worn at all times. For more, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.
MICRONESIAN COVID-19 Helpline is supported by We Are Oceania, weareoceania.org, to help with identifying COVID-19 symptoms, testing, quarantine, health insurance, housing, unemployment. Call (808) 913-1364. Watch the video at facebook.com/watch/?v=989579144844697.
DEPRESSED, ANXIOUS, NEED SOMEONE TO TALK TO? Call Department of Health's expanded Hawai‘i C.A.R.E.S. program at 1-800-753-6879 – the same number previously used by Crisis Line of Hawai‘i. Individuals in crisis can also text ALOHA to 741741, available 24/7.
RESOURCES FOR LGBTQ+, Loved Ones, and Allies at Sexual and Gender Minority online resource hub at health.hawaii.gov/camhd/lgbtq-safe-spaces.
TALK STORY on Nā Leo TV series aims to help deliver accurate and current information to Hawaiʻi Island residents. Airs live Thursdays at 10 a.m. on Spectrum Channel 53, streaming on Nā Leo's free mobile app, and on-demand at naleo.tv/covid19.
808b-fit.com, contains videos for kūpuna to play and move along with. There are videos for stretching, tai chi, yoga, dancing, dance fitness, bon dance, hula, chair dancing, and chair yoga.
YOGA WITH EMILY Catey Weiss, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. Advanced registration required; $5 per class. volcanoartcenter.org/events, 967-8222.
CHOOSE ALOHA FOR HOME is available to families, to provide a healthy way to grow together using neuroscience and positive psychology. Program uses a series of self-guided videos, activities, and "dinner table discussion topics." Sign up at chooselovemovement.org/choose-love-home.
PICK UP FOOD WEEKDAYS n the parking lot of ACE Hardware in Ocean View from Hope DIA-mend Ministries TLC at 4:45 p.m. About 300 meals available each day, coordinated by pastors Pam and Lance Ako. For help or to donate, call or text Ako at 808-937-6355, or call 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.
EMERGENCY FOOD BOXES available at Cooper Center Tuesday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Call ahead, 967-7800.
FREE FOOD FOR KEIKI offered at Resilience Hub, Nāʻālehu Hongwanji on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, noon to 4 p.m. The Hub also features drop-in WiFi and laptop access. Location is 95-5695 Hawaiʻi Belt Rd. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927, for more.
Virtual presentation, Sea Turtles in Hawaiʻi. Register to watch at rb.gy/rkd2fd.
Free WiFi Access for Students is available in Pāhala, Nāʻālehu, and Ocean View through Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary. Questions? See khpes.org or call 313-4100.
Resilience Hub at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Drop-in wifi and laptop access, free meals for participating keiki. Follows all county, state, and federal COVID-19 guidelines. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927. Register for Boys & Girls Club Mobile Outreach and Tutoring Programs at rb.gy/o1o2hy. For keiki grades 1-6. Contact Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island Administrative Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at (808) 961-5536 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
ʻOhana Help Desk offers online How-To Guides for Chromebooks and iPads at rb.gy/8er9wm. ʻOhana Help Desk also available by phone, weekdays, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sundays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Invite Park Rangers to Virtually Visit Classes, through connecting with teachers and home-schoolers with distance learning programs and virtual huakaʻi (field trips). Contact email@example.com.
Weekly Virtual Town Meetings, hosted by Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary, Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. Discussion topics include attendance, best practices, Grab-n-Go meals, school updates, questions and feedback, and more. Go to KHPES.org for Live WebEx link.
Pāhala and Nāʻālehu Public Libraries, open for WiFi, pick-up, and other services. Nāʻālehu open Monday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pāhala open Tuesday, noon to 7 p.m., Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., limited entry into library with Wiki Visits. Schedule a Library Take Out time at picktime.com/hspls. Open for library card account help and reference assistance from the front door. WiFi available to anyone with a library card, from each library parking lot. See librarieshawaii.org.
Free Book Exchanges, at laundromats in Ocean View and Nāʻālehu, provided by Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries. Open to all. Keep the books, pass them on to other readers, or return them. Selection of books replenished weekly at both sites.
Read Report on Public Input about Disaster Recovery from damage during the 2018 Kīlauea eruption.
View the Civic Engagement and Comment Analysis Report at rb.gy/awu65k.
Watch Hawaiʻi's 28th Annual Filipino Fiesta and 8th Flores de Mayo virtual celebration at rb.gy/b53jgn.
Learn About Hawaiʻi's History & Culture through Papakilo Database, papakilodatabase.com.
Virtual Workshops on Hawaiʻi's Legislative Processes through Public Access Room. Sign up by contacting (808) 587-0478 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Ask questions and discuss all things legislative in a non-partisan environment. Attend Coffee Hour with PAR: Fridays at 3 p.m. on Zoom, meeting ID 990 4865 9652 or click zoom.us/j/99048659652. PAR staff will be available to answer questions and to discuss the legislative process. Anyone wanting to listen in without taking part in discussions is welcome. Learn more at lrb.hawaii.gov/public-access-room.
Online Directory at shopbigisland.com, co-sponsored by County of Hawai‘i, has a signup sheet for local businesses to fill in the blanks. The only requirement is a physical address on this island.
Food Assistance: Apply for The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences COVID-19 Family Relief Funds. Funded by Volcano Community Association, and members of the VSAS Friends and Governing Boards, who have donated, the fund supplies KTA or Dimple Cheek Gift Cards, or gift cards to other locally owned business, to VSAS families in need. Contact Kim Miller at 985-8537, email@example.com. Contributions to the fund can be sent in by check to: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785 – write Relief Fund in the memo. See volcanoschool.net.
Marketing Assistance, for small businesses affected by COVID-19, from University of Hawaiʻi-Hilo faculty and the senior class at bit.ly/2YvFxsl.
Apply for Utility Assistance to pay for electricity, non-government water, or gas. Applicants must be a Hawaiʻi Island resident, at least 18 years old, lost income or work hours due to COVID-19, and not previously received assistance from other COVID-19 federal or state-funded programs. Funded by CARES Act and distributed by Hawaiʻi County Economic Opportunity Council, required documents for application are government-issued identification, income verification documents for all household members, utility statement with address of services, lease/rental agreement or mortgage document, and proof of hardship. Hardship may include, but not limited to, pay stubs documenting pre-COVID-19 income, unemployment approval letter, or layoff letter. Apply at HCEOC.net or call 808-961-2681.
Apply for Expanded Hawaiʻi County Rent and Mortgage Assistance Program. Contact RMAP partners: Hawaiian Community Assets/Hawaiʻi Community Lending, HawaiianCommunity.net, 808-934-0801; HOPE Services Hawaiʻi, hopeserviceshawaii.org/rmap, 808-935- 3050; Hawai‘i First Federal Credit Union, hawaiifirstfcu.com/pathways, 808-933- 6600; Neighborhood Place of Puna, neighborhoodplaceofpuna.org/coronavirus-rent-mortgage-relief, 808-965-5550; Hawai‘i Island Home for Recovery, hihrecovery.org/RMAP, 808-640-4443 or 808- 934-7852; Habitat for Humanity Hawai‘i Island, habitathawaiiisland.org/rmap.html, 808-450-2118.
Apply for Holomua Hawaiʻi Relief Grants for small businesses and nonprofits, up to $10,000, support core operations, safe on-going and reopening costs, personal protective equipment, and training and technical assistance. The business or nonprofit must employ 50 people or fewer. See rb.gy/v2x2vy.
Receive Help Over the Phone with Critical Financial Issues, through Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund Financial Navigators from County of Hawaiʻi, in partnership with Hawaiʻi First Federal Credit Union. Complete webform at hawaiifirstfcu.com/community-resource-center or call 808-933-6600. Contact Sharon Hirota at 808-961-8019 with questions.
CONSERVATION RESERVE PROGRAM enrollment ends Feb. 12. Agricultural producers and private landowners interested in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency Conservation Reserve Program can sign up for the program until Friday, Feb. 12. The competitive program provides annual rental payments for land devoted to conservation.
Contact AskUSDA at (833) ONE-USDA with representatives available 4 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. weekdays. The website, ask.usda.gov is available 24/7 and includes live chat agents available 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays. Inquiries can also be sent via email at any time to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women Farmers can Register with Hawaiʻi Women Farmers Directory, a statewide online directory of women-operated farms, ranches, and agribusinesses. Visit the program website to register, rb.gy/87fn9d.
Program to Sell Produce and Meats on Hawaiʻi Island from commercial farmers and livestock producers on Hawai‘i Island for distribution to families in need. Learn more at rb.gy/exzuk1.
Native Hawaiian Farmers and Ranchers urged to use U.S. Dept. of Ag On-Farm Market Directory. Visit the program website, ams.usda.gov/local-food-directories/onfarm.
Read About Seed Biodiversity for Hawaiʻi's Local Food System in It all Begin and Ends with Seed, where Education by Outreach Coordinator Nancy Redfeather shares her insights. Read the blog at rb.gy/ijai3y.
Find Grants and Loans Offered to Farmers and Ranchers, at oahuaca.org. The website has a new search feature. Find Rangeland Management Resources at globalrangelands.org/state/hawaii.
Learn Basics of Organic Farming, via free modules at rb.gy/4wio2y.
PETS & WILDLIFE
One-Time Emergency Food For Pets is available through KARES. Call David or Barbara Breskin at 319-8333.
Report Humpback Whales in Trouble at NOAA Fisheries 24 hour hotline, 1-888- 256-984. Also report distressed sea turtles, monk seals and dolphins.
hihs.org, Services Tab, Spay and Neuter or Community Vet Care, or email email@example.com. Call 808-217- 0154. All appointments must be scheduled in advance and are open to healthy dogs and cats. Two pets per family will be accommodated, each pet with own appointment. Unavailable to animals other than dogs and cats. Unavailable to strays and those with contagious illnesses.
Wai‘ōhinu Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Recycling services available 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. "White goods" appliance collection services will accept one appliance per resident per day. Customers need to check in with the facility attendant before dropping an appliance off at the facility. No unattended drop-offs allowed. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270.
Ocean View Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection will continue as usual on Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270.
Sign Up for Solid Waste Operations Alerts at rb.gy/iemgrc for site closures, service hours, and more.
|Read the March edition of The Ka`u Calendar at www.kaucalendar.com|