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Wednesday, December 01, 2021

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021

Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū will host a Christmas event in Nāʻālehu, with leader Terry-Lee
Shibiuya, right, organizing many sponsors. See more below. Photo from Hana Laulima

COUNTY OF HAWAI'I IS SEEKING SUPPORT FOR THE NEW PAHALA WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT. The state Department of Health could give a variance to the County of Hawai'i to help it gain timely approvals to build it. The county's Director of Environmental Management, Ramzi Mansour, said he hopes the community will support the plan and that he and staff plan to visit Pāhala to interact with the residents early next year. "If we get everyone on the same page, it is easier to move the project forward."
    The county's Department of Environmental Management, under the past administration, planned to build a treatment plant with the kind of capacity calculated for neighborhoods within the City & County of Honolulu, said Mansour. He said that a more recent assessment shows that the amount of effluent in Pāhala is about half that used in the standard calculation for O'ahu wastewater treatment plants. With less effluent in Pāhala, a smaller treatment plant that would make a smaller and shallower footprint on the land would be possible.
Honoka'a's  wastewater treatment plant is similar to the one planned earlier for Pāhala, with
 excavations that, in Pāhala, could have damaged lava tubes, according to Hawai'i County officials.
 Photo from Goodfellowbros.com
    He said the county is working on a new plan that would also be better for the environment, disturbing only two of the 14.9 acres set aside for the project. He said that treated effluent would be used to irrigate macadamia trees, which had been slated for removal in the earlier plan to make way for lagoons for sewage treatment.
    Mansour said that lagoons would have been excavated as deep as 18 feet and that recent geotechnical investigation showed lava tubes underground, from two to six feet in diameter, which could have been damaged by the excavation. He also said that the unknown extent of the lava tubes on the property could have made the lagoons unstable.
    In addition, said Mansour, the realization that Pāhala would have less effluent, led the county to realize that it could have to add water to keep the lagoons functional.
    With the new planning taking into consideration five years of actual water flow data, the county has asked the state Department of Health for a variance to "initially construct reduced Waste Water Treatment Plant capacity to correspond closer to anticipated flows resulting from LCC closure."
    The LLC closure refers to Large Capacity Cesspools in Pāhala, which were inherited by the county from the old sugar plantation sewage system and have long been illegal across the U.S. The EPA has
Ramzi Mansour, Director of Dept.
 of  Environmental Management
already fined the county for not moving faster on replacing the old system and the county wants to move quickly to solve the problem, said Mansour. He said the sewer system will focus on the area of Pāhala that was served by the old plantation system and would not be designed to service future expansion of the town. He said that capacity could be added over time, if there becomes a need for it.
    With the new sewage system, the old plantation pipes that travel through private yards, across streets to the gang cesspool below the residential area of the town, would be abandoned. The new system would include piping through public right of ways, including streets.
    The earlier plan would have cost government some $250,000 per home, business or other facility. "The new system should be less expensive, with less environmental impact, said Mansour. "The county seeks public support for getting this variance approved."
    A public comment period on the variance is open through Dec. 30. Comments can be mailed to State of Hawai'i Wastewater Branch, 2827 Waimano Home Road, #207, Pearl City, HI 96782 or emailed to Mark Tomomitsu at mark.tomomitsu@doh.hawaii.gov.
    Sandra Demoruelle, of Nāʻālehu Theatre, has long been an advocate of community involvement in the planning of sewage treatment solutions for Nāʻālehu and Pāhala and sent out notices about the county's request for the variance. She said she was concerned about the estimate of the effluent produced in Pāhala being lower than in the original proposal and also encouraged the public to send in comments to the state Department of Health.

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

NOMINATIONS FOR THE HAWAI'I ISLAND SEAT ON THE BOARD OF LAND & NATURAL RESOURCES are being sought by Gov. David Ige. A statement from his office says he is recruiting "qualified and dedicated individuals who are interested in serving" on the BLNR. Current Hawai'i Island board member Chris Yuen's term ends on July 1, 2022. The governor also seeks applications from Kaua'i to fill the seat held by Tommy Oi, who will depart after eight years on April 25.
    The statement says, "The governor is seeking applicants with balanced and inclusive perspectives, committed to the conservation and protection and sustainable use of Hawai'i's natural and cultural
resources that are the public trust responsibilities of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. A background in conservation and natural resources and/or real property law and land transactions is particularly helpful."
    DLNR manages public lands under its jurisdiction, including forestry and wildlife, aquatic resources, state parks, boating and ocean recreation, and conservation and coastal lands, as well as commercial properties and unencumbered lands.
    These are volunteer board positions that require preparation for and attendance at BLNR meetings on O'ahu twice a month and more often as needed.
    BLNR members are nominated and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appointed by the governor for a term of four years. At twice monthly meetings, the BLNR reviews and takes action on departmental submittals, including land leases and conservation district use applications.
    Nominees are required to provide publicly viewable financial disclosure information prior to their appointment to the BLNR. For further information about the responsibilities of a BLNR member, refer to Hawai'i Revised Statutes (HRS) Chapter 171-4. For more information and to submit nominations, visit: http://boards.hawaii.gov/.

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

HAWAI'I LEGISLATURE'S GRANT'S-IN-AID APPLICATION forms and instructions for the next fiscal year which runs from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023, are posted on the Legislature’s website: https://capitol.hawaii.gov/GIA/GIA.aspx .
    A link is available under Recent Updates on the Legislature’s homepage, capitol.hawaii.gov.
    Qualified nonprofit and other organizations can apply via the state's GIA online application tool. In
2019, the Legislature awarded $30 million in grants to nonprofits serving public functions in the Hawaiian Islands. For 2020, the Legislature announced: "Because of the novel COVID virus and its devastating effect on State finances, the Legislature did not make any Chapter 42F grants during the 2020 Session." Grants in Aid funding returned in the 2021 session and again for the 2022 session.
    The deadline to submit grant applications is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 17.
    Qualified non-profit and other organizations must be incorporated under Hawai'i law. Applications for state grants are public information and posted online.
    With any questions, contact the state House of Representatives Committee on Finance staff at 808/586-6200 or Senate Committee on Ways & Means staff at 808-586-6800.

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

FREE FOOD, GIFT AND FUN will abound at the Touched By an Angel event on Saturday, Dec. 18, at Nāʻālehu Shopping Center. Local nonprofit Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū is organizing this community 
food and gift distribution, which will begin at 4 p.m. until supplies run out.
    To enjoy this special Christmas in Kaʻū experience, families can turn into the shopping center parking lot off of the highway and drive past decorated booths where elves, angels and Santa's helpers will be handing out gifts, free bentos, hams, bags of rice and a thousand candy canes.
    A blue Santa, represented by a county police officer, will be there to greet keiki, along with 30 backpacks donated by Hawai'i Police Department. Hawaiʻi County Mayor Mitch Roth and State Rep. Sylvia Luke, who is running for Lieutenant Governor, are also expected to attend.

     Among the other curated gifts being given are warm blankets and games that will encourage families to spend time together, said Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū President Terry-Lee Shibuya.
    "Let the Christmas spirit reign!" added Shibuya, who is determined to make the event successful and safe. She shared that volunteers' temperatures will be checked, and they will wear masks. Drive-thru participants are also required to wear a masks and stay in their vehicles during the event.
    Event sponsors along with Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū are Catholic Charities Hawaiʻi, Jonathan Dale Miller Foundation, Punaluʻu Bake Shop and Coldwell Banker Island Properties.
    This event follows two other smaller food distributions Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū executed this Fall funded by the Hawaiʻi Island United Way Emergency Food and Shelter Program. The nonprofit partnered with Patty Fujimoto and Hana Hou Restaurant which prepared 100 family-sized meals while HLLOK volunteers passed them out to those in need.
    Hana Laulima Lāhui O Kaʻū continues to work toward their larger goal of creating a Hawaiian Cultural Center for the Kaʻū community. Last Spring, HHLOK was awarded a grant from the East Hawai'i Fund of the Hawai'i Community Foundation to provide online Hawaiian culture-based education sessions and helped to support a virtual hoʻolauleʻa.

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. "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.