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Thursday, November 11, 2021

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Thursday, Nov. 11, 2021

Veterans Day flags at OKK's Na`alehu Market on Wednesday in preparation for today, Thursday's federal holiday.
Photo from OKK

VETERANS DAY CAME EARLY AT THE O KA`U KAKOU MARKET in Nāʻālehu on Wednesday. Veterans received cash vouchers good for anything in the market and entered prize drawings held throughout the day. Shootz band provided musical entertainment. Sonny Ramos recited a patriotic veterans poem. Joy Santiago offered free face painting for children and adults alike.

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IN HONOR OF VETERANS DAY, U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono, Member of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, issued the following statement this morning:
Veterans on the ground at Na`alehu Market
for a Veterans Day celebration. Photo from OKK
    “Veterans, servicemembers, and their families have dedicated their lives to defending our freedoms, and today, we come together to honor their bravery, sacrifice, and commitment to our nation.
    “I remain committed to fighting for veterans and servicemembers in Hawai'i and across the country, and will continue to work with my colleagues on the Committees on Veterans’ Affairs and Armed Services to keep our promises to them, like making sure they can access affordable health care—including mental health services—housing, education, and more. I will also continue working with the Department of Veterans Affairs to make sure programs and services are accommodating and available to every veteran, no matter their race, ethnicity, gender identity, or sexual orientation.”

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

SEN. BRIAN SCHATZ TWEETED ON VETERANS DAY: The impact our veterans have had in the security of our nation and the strength of our Hawai‘i communities will endure for generations. We owe
Sen. Brian Schatz bringing a lei to Punchbowl
for Veterans Day. 
them and their families nothing less than the commitment they’ve shown us. That includes making sure they get the health care and benefits they’ve earned, helping them find good-paying jobs when returning home from duty, and correcting the military records of all who honorably served, regardless of sexual orientation. And though we recognize our veterans and their families today, we’re grateful for all you’ve done every day. Thank you for your service."

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CONGRESSMAN KAI KAHELE'S VETERANS DAY MESSAGE says: "As we observe Veterans Day today, I’m thinking of my peers who served in America’s longest war. To all our servicemembers past and present, mahalo nui loa for your courage. Our nation is stronger and safer thanks to your bravery and service."

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

The band Schootz playing for Veterans Day at the OKK Market.
Photo from OKK
DELAYS IN BUILDING A NEW WASTEWATER SYSTEM IN PAHALA HAVE NETTED AN EPA FINE of $28,500 for Hawai'i County. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced on Wednesday that the fine is for "failure to meet the milestone requiring complete design of the Pāhala Wastewater Treatment Facility."
    The plan under the Mayor Harry Kim administration was for a lagoon type system to replace old sugar camp cesspools in Pāhala and Nāʻālehu. The new administration has been planning a smaller, less expensive wastewater treatment system and also considered one larger sewage treatment plant that could accommodate Na`alehu, Punalu'u and Pāhala.
    Amy Miller, EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Director of the Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Division, said, “EPA expects the County to expeditiously construct the Pāhala Wastewater Treatment Facility to protect drinking water and coastal resources on the Big Island.”
    In the 2017 Order, the County agreed to close the old sugar plantation's five large capacity cesspools (LCCs) that serve the Pāhala and Nāʻālehu communities and replace them with wastewater treatment facilities approved by the Hawai‘i Department of Health. The County of Hawai‘i was required to complete the Pāhala Wastewater Treatment Plant design and have it approved by the Department of Health by July 24, 2021."
    The EPA statement says, "Under the agreement, approximately 272 properties served by the LCCs in the Pāhala and Nāʻālehu communities will be connected to the new County wastewater treatment facilities. An additional 95 properties not currently served by the LCCs in the Pāhala and Nāʻālehu communities will receive access to the new wastewater treatment facilities."
   The EPA statement explains: "An LCC is a cesspool serving multi-unit residential homes, a non-residential facility with the capacity to serve 20 or more people per day, or a home business. LCCs were banned under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act in April 2005. Since the 2005 LCC ban, more than 3,600 LCCs in Hawai'i have been closed; however, hundreds remain in operation.  "Cesspools collect and discharge untreated raw sewage into the ground, where disease-causing pathogens and harmful chemicals can contaminate groundwater, streams, and the ocean. Groundwater provides 95 percent of all domestic water in Hawai'i," notes the EPA statement.
    For more information on this specific agreement visit: https://www.epa.gov/uic/hawaii-cesspool-administrative-orders. For more information on the LCC ban, visit: https://www.epa.gov/uic/cesspools-hawaii. Learn more about EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region. Connect with us on FacebookEXIT and on TwitterEXIT.
A Joy Santiago face painting at OKK market Wednesday.
Photo from OKK

    News stories on the Pāhala and Nāʻālehu cesspool situation are being carried by the Hawai'i Tribune Herald, West Hawai'i Today, as well as other local news outlets, and Associated Press, which has distributed it nationwide, where it has been picked up by U.S. News, yahoo news and newspapers across the country as far away as North Carolina.
     The Tribune Herald story reported that county "Environmental Management Director Ramzi Mansour told the county’s Environmental Management Commission in January he was meeting with consultants for the $130 million project (for both Nāʻālehu and Pahala) and was looking for a less expensive solution that would satisfy EPA and DOH requirements.
    Tibune Herald reported that "Mansour said he thinks only one sewage treatment plant is needed to serve Pahala and Nāʻālehu, not two as had been planned." 
    This statement comes at a time when owners of the Punalu'i development are seeking solutions for their own sewage treatment plant that serves condominiums, houses and Punalu'u Beach Park, and could serve future development on the resort and residential property, but has fallen into disrepair.
    Tribune Herald also reported that "Mansour also told the commission he’s investigating an alternative that would use modular units that can be assembled on site and added to or subtracted from as community needs change. Mansour said the project currently on the books also would require about $400,000 per home to connect to the sewer system," said the Tribune Herald story.
    To clarify, the "$400,000" expense spread across the number of homes initially served would be for construction of the sewage plants, pipes and hookup, and would be funded by the county, not each homeowner. The estimate of the cost of the original planned sewer plants that the county is attempting to revise would have been about $250,000 per house in Pāhala and $470,000 per household in Nāʻālehu, according to county officials.

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

A FREE THANKSGIVING MEAL WILL BE OFFERED BY ST. JUDE'S Episcopal Church in Ocean View on Saturday, Nov. 20. The food is take-out only and masks are required to be worn. Thanksgiving meals will be provided from 10 a.m. to noon or until the food runs out.

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

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.

KAʻŪ 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 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.