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Saturday, October 09, 2021

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021

Kahuku Coastal is a 3,128 acre preserve owned by the county that could benefit from Two Percent stewardship
funds as provided by a County Charter Amendment that passed last year. Photo from PONC

WILL TWO PERCENT LAND FUND CHARTER AMENDMENTS BE IMPLEMENTED SOON? That is the question from Debbie Hecht, who coordinated the campaign to use  part of the Two Percent money to hire a county employee to work on conserving more land with the Two Percent Land Fund and to help fund non-profits to take care of the county's preserved properties. The lands were bought, in part, with two percent of Hawai'i County's property tax income. Much of the acreage purchased to date is in Kaʻū, including Kāwā, Kahuku Coastal, Kahua Olohu and Waikapuna.
    Hecht has been Campaign Coordinator of the Save our Lands Citizens' Committee since 2006 and released this opinion piece this week:
    "Does your vote really count? Ten months ago, on November 3, 2021, you voted for President of the United States, a new Mayor, and several new County Council members. You also voted for two charter amendments to change the 2% Open Space Land Fund Program. It was our goal to get the County to hire someone to work on the 2% Land Fund Program and to streamline the Maintenance Fund Stewardship grants to empower the volunteers who care for the 2% Lands. I have asked the Mayor and Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources (PONC) staff several times to implement these changes. 
The county preserve at Kāwā protects brackish waters that are nurseries for
 fish and other aquatic life. County Two Percent funding helps volunteers
to steward Kāwā. Photo from Na Mamo O 
    "Nothing has happened to make the changes that you voted for!"Our group of thoughtful, committed volunteers proposed these changes to the existing charter because we believe that the money in the Land Fund should be used more responsibly to protect places deemed of high value by the respected PONC process of prioritizing. Both the Kim and Kenoi administrations have had staff work only part time on PONC issues since 2006, while our island's treasured places that have been chosen and proposed for acquisition, come up for sale, were purchased by private parties and lost for community use. 
    "The same policy continues in the Roth administration. The 2% Land Fund Program has never reached it's full potential! Ten months after you voted for these changes nothing has been done. We were told by staff it could take two years to fill this important new position and streamline the Stewardship grant process. 
    "Why? There is $21,465,389 sitting in the Land Fund and no properties have been purchased in 2021. Only two properties were purchased in 2020. There were 16 properties recommended by the Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources commission for acquisition for 2020. There are 17 properties on the list for 2021, which will be included in the 2021 Report to the mayor. To see this list of properties go to: https://debbiehecht.com/2021/09/18/the-great-success-of-the-2-land-fund/
    "There is more than $3 million sitting in the Maintenance Fund, and only some of the non-profit volunteer groups who care for these lands have just received grant money they applied for in 2019. No funds have been issued since then. Stewardship grants are two years behind! This means that volunteers are using their own money to care for these lands.
Waikapuna is also conserved, in part, with Two Percent money, which makes it eligible for
stewardship funds, under the County Charter. Photo from DLNR

   "Voters voiced their strong support for the 2% Land Fund repeatedly in 2006, 2010, 2012 and yet again in 2020. When will our elected officials see how much benefit citizens get out of having open space and parklands for healthy recreation? The land is what makes our island one of the most beautiful places in the world and attracts tourists. Once acquired, these lands can be enjoyed forever by our keiki and grandchildren. These lands are our legacy as a caring community!
    "Make your vote count! Please send an email to the Mayor and Council members and ask them to make these changes to the 2% Land Fund program as we voted 10 months ago and as they are now required by law in the Hawai'i County Charter. Help save Hawai'i County's treasured lands! Send emails tro aaron.chung@hawaiicounty.govheather.kimball@hawaiicounty.govsue.leeloy@hawaiicounty.govashley.kierkiewicz@hawaiicounty.govmatt.kanealiikleinfelder@hawaiicounty.govMaile.David@hawaiicounty.govrebecca.villegas@hawaiicounty.govtim.richards@hawaiicounty.govmitch.roth@hawaiicounty.gov."
    For more information on the Two Percent Land Fund go to: https://debbiehecht.com/2021/09/18/the-great-success-of-the-2-land-fund/

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see www.facebook.com/kaucalendar/. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

PHILIP ONG OF HAWAI'I TRACKER REPORTED on Friday that high sulfur dioxide and particulate matter levels reportedly forced students and staff at Kaʻū High School & Pāhala Elementary to shelter in place for several hours in the morning, when air quality peaked at purple on State of Hawai'i's Air Quality Index. Purple is "Very Unhealthy" and the peak came around 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. before improving by 11. a.m. to orange, which is "Unhealthy For Sensitive Groups," reported Ong.
    The bad air came back in the afternoon and another shelter in place was called on the campus, according to teachers and staff there.
    Ong wrote on Hawai'i Tracker that "Students and staff are safe indoors, guided by the action plan established by the state departments of Health and Education, school representatives, and nursing professionals."
    Ong, himself a geologist, software developer and volcano tour guide known for his educational excursions and his partnership with Ikaika Marzo in reporting on the 2018 lava flows in Puna, gave an explanation for the high vog level in Pāhala on Friday:
    "Strong winds are blowing the eruption plume from Kīlauea's Halemaʻumaʻu crater, about 20 miles northeast, concentrating volcanic emissions near the ground in the very localized area around the state's second oldest public school. According to the same sensor network, the nearby town of Naʻalehu has been unaffected thus far today, though farther uphill the community of Ocean View continues to border on “Moderate” levels (yellow) as it has throughout the eruption, with a similar impact noted along the island's Kona coast...."
    Ong reported on Hawai'i Tracker: "Since the eruption's lava is wholly contained with the summit crater, its primary hazard is high levels of volcanic gas,. He pointed to the USGS hazard analysis, which daily has
been reminding people that the volcanic gas “creates the potential for airborne health hazards to residents and visitors, damages agricultural crops and other plants, and affects livestock."
    Ong noted that "Sulfur dioxide emissions from the volcano remained at high levels of about 4,700
Philip Ong, known for his reporting and educational
 sessions on volcanoes on this island, focused on a
 school campus in Kaʻū on Friday where air quality due
 to volcanic emissions reached very unhealthy levels.
tonnes per day on Thursday, but have been on the decline, down from 7,000 tonnes per day on Wednesday, and from 85,000 tonnes per day at the start of the eruption. For comparison, the highest emission factories in the United States in 2018 averaged just over 200 tonnes of sulfur dioxide output per day."
    Ong also noted that "The Hawaiʻi Interagency Vog Dashboard offers many resources and answers to common questions, and includes both action plans for sulfur dioxide and particulate matter at https://vog.ivhhn.org , while the map is available at https://air.doh.hawaii.gov/home/map . While the temporary shelter-in-place is not of major concern, it is important to note the human impact of eruptions due to volcanic gas rather than lava, as this more common hazard affects communities in Kaʻū and Kona with every eruption."
       See Hawai'i Tracker at www.hawaiitracker.com.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see www.facebook.com/kaucalendar/. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Jobs with the Facilities Management team opened today at Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park.
To apply see https://go.nps.gov/HAVOjobs. NPS photo

JOBS HAVE OPENED IN HAWAI'I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK. The Park posted today: "Want to work in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park? Three temporary full-time positions are currently open for WG4 maintenance workers ($20.55/hour) with the park’s Facilities Management team."
    To find out more, visit the park website: https://go.nps.gov/HAVOjobs. The jobs posted today, Oct. 9 and close Oct. 23.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see www.facebook.com/kaucalendar/. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Read the entire Kaʻū Calendar and back issues at 
www.kaucalendar.com. Find it in the mail from Volcano
through PāhalaNāʻālehu, Ocean View to Miloli'i.
Pick it up from newsstands.

KAʻŪ COFFEE MILL & VISITOR CENTER. Buy online at kaucoffeemill.com and in person at 96-2694 Wood Valley Road, daily, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

PUNALUʻU BAKESHOP online at bakeshophawaii.com and in-person 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week in x.

ALIʻI HAWAIʻI HULA HANDS COFFEE. Order by calling 928-0608 or emailing alihhhcoffee@yahoo.com.

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.  See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com..

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 kaohi@kuahiwiranch.com.

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.

LEARN SELF-CARE THROUGH Big Island Substance Abuse Council's Practice Self-Care Series. For additional series that feature refreshing wellness tips, follow the Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group at facebook.com/bhhsurg

WOMEN'S COLLECTIVE OFFERS HEALTH PROGRAMS. Piko focuses on reproductive health; increasing access, respect, cultural competence, education, and choice. Pilina aims to grow membership and establish a culture of collaborative decision-making. Follow @kau_womens_health_collective. Contact rootsmedieshawaii@gmail.com. Call 808-450-0498.

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.

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 mobiletutoring@bgcbi.org or info@bgcbi.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 havo_education@nps.gov.

Public Libraries are 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.

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 par@capitol.hawaii.gov. 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, kmiller@volcanoschool.net. 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

ENROLL CHILDREN, from first through eighth grade, in Kula ʻAmakihi, a program from Volcano School of the Arts & Sciences. It started Aug. 3. Call 808-985- 9800 or visit www.volcanoschool.net.

WALK THROUGH A GUIDED NATURE TRAIL & Sculpture Garden, Mondays, 9:30 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. No reservations for five or fewer – limited to ten people. Free; donations appreciated. Email programs@volcanoartcenter.org. Garden is open to walk through at one's own pace, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. www.volcanoartcenter.org. Call 967-8222.

Pāhala ART GALLERY is open Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. in Nāʻālehu. It features and sells works by local artists and offers other gift items.Vendor applications are being accepted for its Holiday Arts & Crafts Sale on Saturday, Nov. 13. Kaʻū Art Gallery's website has 24/7 access online and is frequently updated to show current inventory items. "We are always looking to collaborate with local artists in our community," said assistant Alexandra Kaupu. Artists with an interest in being featured at Kaʻū Art Gallery and Gift Shop, contact gallery owner and director Corrine Kaupu at kauartgallery@hawaiiantel.biz.

GOLF & MEMBERSHIPS for Discovery Harbour Golf Course and its Clubhouse: The Club offers Social Memberships, with future use of the clubhouse and current use of the pickleball courts as well as walking and running on specified areas of the golf course before 8 a.m. and after 3 p.m. to enjoy the panoramiocean views. Golf memberships range from unlimited play for the avid golfer to casual play options. Membership is required to play and practice golf on the course. All golf memberships include Social Membership amenities. Membership fees are designed to help underwrite programs and improvements to the facilities.Call 808-731-5122 or stop by the Clubhouse during business hours, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily at 94-1581 Kaulua Circle. Email clubatdiscoveryharbour@gmail.com. See The Club at Discovery Harbour Facebook page.

ALOHA FRIDAY MARKETPLACE, hosted by Kaʻū Main Street, is from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., grounds of The Old Shirakawa Estate   in Waiʻohinu.  It features: Made in Hawai'i Products, Organic Produce, Creative Crafts, ARt, Flower and Plants, Food, Ka`u Coffee, Gluen Free Low Carb Goodies, Wellness Services and Products, Clothing, Hand Crafted Treats, Music and more. Vendor and customer inquiries: AlohaFridayMarket@gmail.com.

VOLCANO FARMERS MARKET, Cooper Center, Volcano Village on Sundays. 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with much local produce, baked goods, food to go, island beef and Hawai‘i Coffee. Cooper Center's EBT Machine, used at the Farmer's Market, is out of service until further notice. EBT is used for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps. Call 808-967-7800.

OCEAN VIEW COMMUNITY MARKET, open Saturdays and Thursdays, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the corner of Kona Drive and Highway 11, where Thai Grindz is located. Managed by Mark Council. Masks mandatory. 100-person limit, social distancing required. Gate unlocked for vendors at 5:30 a.m., $15 dollars, no reservations needed. Parking in upper lot only. Vendors must provide own sanitizer. Food vendor permits required. Carpooling encouraged.

O KAʻŪ KĀKOU MARKET, in Nāʻālehu, open Wednesday, and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon. Limit of 50 customers per hour, 20 vendor booths, with 20 feet of space between vendors. Masks and hand sanitizing required, social distancing enforced. Contact Sue Barnett, OKK Market Manager, at 808-345-9374 (voice or text) or kaufarmer@aol.com for more and to apply to vend. See facebook.com/OKauKakouMarket.

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.


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.