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Ka‘ū News Briefs, Thursday, May 7, 2020

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Jeff Hoffeinbein was one of the Ocean View partners with Habitat for Humanity. Using his sweat equity, he became
a homeowner with a mortgage, assisted by Habitat, which reopens its ReStores May 12. The stores sell upcycled
building materials, and furnishings, to help fund the non-profit. Photo from Habitat for Humanity

KAʻŪ HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION IS SET FOR FRIDAY, MAY 22 at 1 p.m., with the drive-thru in the parking lot of Kaʻū District Gym. Graduating seniors will be escorted by family members to a stopping point, where the student will step out of the vehicle wearing cap and gown, receive their diploma from Principal Sharon Beck,
and stand with her for a photo. The vehicle will move along to pick up a bushel basket from Uhane, the nonprofit group of Kumu Hula Debbie and Kawehi Ryder, who give hula and other Hawaiian cultural training at the school. The basket will include some of the fixings for a graduation celebration including luau pig, head cabbage, and sweet potatoes, along with a letter from Mayor Harry Kim.

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 HAWAIʻI STATE LEGISLATURE WILL RECONVENE MONDAY, May 11, for six to ten days. Lawmakers will meet in person, following social distancing rules. House and Senate
Sen. Russell Ruderman
chambers will be deep-cleaned after each gathering. Those representing Kaʻū - Senators Dru Kanuha and Russell Ruderman and House of Representatives members Richard Creagan and Richard Onishi - will fly to Oʻahu. As essential workers, they are exempt from the 14-day quarantine. Only legislators and staff are allowed into the Capitol. Everyone entering the building is screened for COVID-19.

     During a press conference today, Senate President Ronald Kouchi and House Speaker Scott Saiki said legislators will remake the state budget, in light of an expected shortfall of $1.6 billion, given the
Sen. Dru Kanuha
drastic drop in state sales, Transient Accommodations, and income tax revenues. Also contributing are extra expenses from state coffers during the pandemic.
     In question is whether an across-the-board 20 percent pay cut for state workers will be enacted, along with furloughing some, to help reduce the shortfall. Extra expenses not already in the budget are also expected, such as those to control COVID-19 in the future, with more staff at the airport to screen visitors and more contact tracing employees for the state Department of Health.
Rep. Richard Creagan 
     The possible reduction of teacher pay drew resistance from the public and teachers. The teachers union asked Gov. David Ige and the legislature to protect their income. Union leader Corey Roselee said that a pay cut would detract teachers from staying in Hawaiʻi and could result in too few fill-in instructors to meet classroom requirements. Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Chirstina Kishimoto, said some money has been saved during distance learning with schools closed.
Rep. Richard Onishi
     The House and Senate leaders said that to avoid pay cuts, the state may be able to borrow money from emergency funds and other sources, at very low interest rates, with authorization from the legislature.  Federal assistance could also be used, they said.

     Kouchi, a Senator from Kauaʻi, said reconvening next week takes advantage of this time of few new COVID-19 cases in Hawaiʻi. "If we have a surge again, we may not be able to get back" in June, for the next scheduled session.
     To catch up on bills being considered during the 2020 Hawaiʻi Legislature, go to hawaii.capitol.gov and search by subject of choice, names of legislators. Submit written testimony at capitol.hawaii.gov/login/login.aspx. Watch hearings online at capitol.hawaii.gov/broadcasts.aspx.


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.

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY'S ReSTORES REOPEN TUESDAY, MAY 12. Habitat has helped Kaʻū residents, particularly in Ocean View, become homeowners through family sweat equity, skilled volunteers, and assistance with mortgages. Building materials and furnishings are core items upcycled through the ReStores to raise money for Habitat.
Skilled volunteers and the families who will own the home join with
Habitat for Humanity to help people become homeowners.
Photo from Habitat for Humanity
     New hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at  Hilo and Waimea ReStores. The Kona ReStore will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. All three ReStores will accept drop off donations.
     Patrick Hurney, Executive Director for Habitat for Humanity Hawaiʻi Island, said, "Our ReStores are an integral component of our organization. Not only does it provide an affordable shopping alternative for Hawaiʻi Island residents it also reduces the amount of reusable waste to our landfills and helps support our mission to build affordable homes for families in need on Hawaiʻi Island."
     He said that health and safety are the priority. All shoppers are to wear a mask while in the store or dropping off donations. Social distancing will be implemented, too.
     For more information on donation drop off at a ReStore, call: Hilo Restore at 808-935-6677, Kona Restore at 808-331-8010, or Waimea Restore at 808-885-9091.
     Habitat for Humanity Hawaiʻi Island is an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, a global, non-profit housing ministry. Habitat for Humanity Hawaiʻi Island works with families in need to build a safe and affordable place that they can call home. Habitat Hawaiʻi Island is volunteer-driven, and relies on donations to help partner families. To make a monetary donation, visit habitathawaiiisland.org.

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.

HAWAIʻI REGISTERED FEWER UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMS THAN 22 OTHER STATES during the pandemic, according to a WalletHub study released today. Hawaiʻi ranks 23rd in states most affected since theCOVID-19 crisis began, March 16. The most affected, according to WalletHub, are Georgia, New Hampshire, KentuckyLouisiana, and Florida. The least affected are Connecticut, Oregon, Alaska, Wyoming, and Wisconsin.
     In Hawaiʻi, unemployment claims for April climbed to 782.85 percent over January. Idaho registered 143.29 percent, the smallest increase. Florida measured the largest increase, at 3650.35 percent.

The number of Hawaiʻi unemployment claims ranks 23rd in the country,
according to WalletHub. Image from state Department of Labor
     Unemployment claims in Hawaiʻi increased by 2597.86 percent between March 16 and May 3. Georgia recorded the highest increase, with 4,995.9 percent. Connecticut recorded the lowest, with 1148.07 percent.

     The U.S.saw the most unemployment claims during the week of March 23-29, with 6.9 million claims. Since March 16, the unemployed filed 33.5 million claims. The entire Great Recession – December 2007 to June 2009 – destroyed 8.8 million jobs. Since then, until the pandemic, a bustling economy created 22.7 million jobs, but 10.8 million have been lost since March 16 due to COVID-19 stay-at-home regulations.

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.

Papayas that may otherwise be dumped as markets shrink, will be fed to pigs, which are cut off from receiving
food waste from most restaurants and schools. Photo from CTAHR
PAPAYAS TO PIGS is one solution to the overabundance and potential loss of papayas grown in Puna. An article in University of Hawaiʻi News says its College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources Cooperative Extension Service is bringing pig farmers and papaya growers together.
     UH News reports that pig farmers faced a shortage in feed, since 75 percent comes from food waste generated by schools and restaurants, a source much reduced during the pandemic. They "quickly switched to purchasing mainland grain," creating an extra cost and causing a shortage of pig pellets at local feed stores.
     Papaya growers faced a shortage in markets as U.S. mainland distributors purchased far less papaya, as consumers stockpiled canned and other non-perishable items. Local papaya growers were in danger of going under. Approximately 50 families, independent growers, and members of the non-profit Hawaiʻi Papaya Industry Association, "are in desperate need of immediate assistance. They have no other income than selling papayas, and their market has crashed, yet they do not qualify for unemployment," reports UH News.

University of Hawaiʻi Agricultural Extension Service is working with papaya growers and shippers to
provide the fruit to pig farmers during the pandemic. Photo from CTHAR
     CTAHR extension livestock agent Mike DuPonte, a member of the Hawaiʻi Island Pork Association, coordinated with HIPA President Eric Weinert of the Hilo papaya packing plant, and exporter Calavo Growers. Together, they created a short-term means to protect both industries and a sector of Hawaiʻi's local food supply.
     UH News reported that "Pigs readily eat papaya, and there are plenty to be had." The Extension Agent provides an estimate of papaya needed by pig farmers. Farmers pick the papayas to be used as feed. Weinert opens the packing plant as a marshaling yard to receive and distribute the papaya to livestock producers. HIPA provides forklifts, scales, and recordkeeping.

     "While this is not a complete solution, this locally grown partnership is keeping both industries afloat while they explore other solutions, ensuring that essential elements of our Islands' food sufficiency can survive,"reports UH News.
     Papaya does not provide all the nutrients that pigs need over the long term, and swine producers cannot afford to pay the prices that papaya farmers usually command from human consumers. CTAHR agents also help members of both organizations apply for financial funding and other emergency aid from the federal government, and large corporations such as Land O' Lakes, which runs a feed and shipping program, and will work with farmers to subsidize them.

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.

JOIN COFFEE BERRY BORER WEBINARS by preregistering for each CBB Zoom session by clicking on the link https://bit.ly/3frPPQD.
     Today, May 7th's webinar was with Peter Follett, of USDA, entitled Multiplying Predators. Others include May 14 with Paul Bayman (UPR) – Coffee Fruit Rot and its Relation to CBB and Beauveria bassiana; May 21 Roxana Myers (USDA-ARS) – Management of Plant-parasitic Nematodes; May 28 Melanie Bondera (HDOA) – Farmers Managing CBB: Update from HDOA Subsidy Program Surveys.
     Agricultural Extension Service agent Andrea Kawabata explains that following registration, a Zoom link will appear onscreen and be sent to the participant's email. Click on the URL to join the CBB webinar. The email includes a phone number for those who want to join by phone.
     Kawabata said she welcomes all those "who have joined us for past CBB webinars," and who have an interest in coffee and learning about coffee berry borer research and extension projects, "to join us for these short presentations with Q&A."
     Evaluation surveys can be found at hawaiicoffeeed.com/cbbwebinars.html.

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.

SPECIALTY COFFEE ASSOCIATION WEBINARS are recommended by Agricultural Extension Agent Andrea Kawabata. She said they are focused on coffee, and on mental health and stress, online sales, business, communication, delivery, and grocery. She said they "could have a broader reach with other farmers and agricultural industries. You might find a suggestion or idea helpful to you and your business."
     Here are topics of the webinars found at sca.coffee/covid19: Mental health and stress;
SCA survey results and key learnings (mills, cooperative, and producer responses @ 13:00 of presentation); Pivoting to online sales; Walk-up and takeaway business in the time of COVID-19;
The importance of communication during business interruptions; Coffee delivery: How does it work?; and Getting into grocery.

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.

A SHORT SURVEY FOR FARMERS AND THEIR FAMILIES on the Covid-19 virus pandemic in Hawaiʻi, is available online. It seeks to understand multiple impacts on people and their families within the farming and agriculture networks in Hawaiʻi, some more significantly affected than others.
     Michael Cheang Lynn Yamashita, Associate Professor Lecturer of Human Development & Family Studies at UH-CTAHR, said, "Please tell us how this pandemic has affected you and your families. Your participation will help us identify where help is needed, and how we can best assist individuals and families in the community with which the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources works or partners."
     The survey takes about 15 minutes to complete: surveymonkey.com/r/ZZH2H53. The survey will close on Friday, May 15 at noon. Contact Yamashita at cheang@hawaii.edu or (808) 956-2252 with questions.

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.

FARMERS WITH AN OVERSUPPLY OF PRODUCE are urged to contact Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture, to join as suppliers for a new farm-to-state initiative. Contact Nicole Pfeffer at nicole.y.pfeffer@hawaii.gov or 808-973-9573 to provide information, including type of produce, quantity, grade, price, and frequency of availability.

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.

A WEBINAR ON DOING BUSINESS ONLINE is available on Tuesday, May 12 from to . E-Commerce Made Simple: How To Successfully Take Your Business Online is presented by Chamber of Commerce Hawaiʻi. Learn about best practices and web platforms available for e-commerce in this webinar led by Meli James, co-founder of Mana Up. The cost to attend for non-members is $35. Register online by Monday, May 11 at Contact Tricia Fetui at tfetui@cochawaii.org with questions. 

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.

NO DIRECT FLIGHTS WITH PASSENGERS ARRIVED TO HAWAIʻI ISLAND YESTERDAY according to a report from Hawai‘i Tourism Authority. The state received 669 passengers, with 233 visitors, 189 residents, and 55 intended new residents on Oʻahu, Maui, and Kauaʻi.

     Today marks six weeks since the Hawaiʻi's mandatory 14-day self-quarantine started for all passengers arriving in Hawai‘i from out of state. The rule also applies to interisland travel, except for essential workers and those with medical appointments.
     Interisland travel saw KonaInternationalAirport receive 161 passengers from Oʻahu and five from Kahului, Maui. Hilosaw 71 arrivals, all from Oʻahu. 


No COVID-19 cases so far in the zip code areas of Volcano, 
Pāhala, and Ocean View. White indicates zero cases, light 
yellow indicates one to five cases. The 96772 area in 
Kaʻū has one case recorded. Map from DOH
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THREE NEW CASES OF COVID-19 were reported in the state today, all on Oʻahu, bringing the total to 629. No new cases were reported for Hawaiʻi Island, which remains at 74. Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense reports 72 of the virus' victims are released from isolation. The remaining two are quarantined at home and monitored by Department of Health. No one is hospitalized and no one died from COVIID-19 on this island.
     In the daily message from Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense, Director Talmadge Magno said, "Know that all the policies of distancing, gatherings, face coverings, cleanliness, and personal health remains in effect. Your help is needed to keep Hawaiʻi Safe. Hawaiʻi Island and State of Hawaiʻiare doing very well in minimizing the spread and the impact of the coronavirus.
Civil Defense Director 
Talmadge Magno.
Photo from Big Island Video News
     "We need to all do our part and get better so we can keep Hawaiʻi safe and stop this virus from affecting the beautiful lifestyle of Hawaiʻi. Thank you very much for listening and thank you for your help. This is your Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense."

     Statewide, the death toll remains at 17. Five hundred sixty-five people are released from isolation.
     In the United States, more than 1.29 million cases have been confirmed, an increase of 25,696 in the last day. Recovery is about 175,000, an increase of about 8,000 since yesterday. The death toll is over 76,537, with over 1,926 new deaths since yesterday.
     Worldwide, more than 3.84 million cases have been confirmed, an increase of about 117,000 since yesterday. Recovery is about 1.28 million, an increase of about 40,000 since yesterday. The death toll is over 269,594, an increase of over 6,500 since yesterday. The USleads the world by more than double the number of deaths of any other country.


Read online at kaucalendar.comSee our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū 
Calendar  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 Www.kaucalendar.com and 
facebook.com/kaucalendarTo 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.

Daily, weekly, and monthly recurring Kaʻū and Volcano Events, Meetings, Entertainment, Exercise, Meditation, and more are listed at kaucalendar.com. However, all non-essential activities are canceled through the end of May.

MOST EVENTS ARE CANCELLED to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus. The state is under a stay-at-home order, with l4 days of quarantine required for anyone coming into the state. Interisland travel is restricted. Those in Hawaiʻi should stay at home unless needing to obtain food or medical care.

ONGOING
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, May 13 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 May 20 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
     Wearing masks is required for everyone.
     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.
     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.
     For further information, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.

Free Breakfast and Lunch for Anyone Eighteen and Under is available at Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary and at Nāʻālehu Elementary weekdays through May. 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 7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m., lunch from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Food is being delivered to 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 Food Pantries Distribution, where families can receive 14 days of food per family:

     The Ocean View location for May is Kahuku Park on Monday, May 11, 10 a.m. to noon. Call The Food Basket, 933-6030.
     The Nāʻālehu location Sacred Heart Church at 95-558 Mamālahoa Hwy, under their Loaves and Fishes program, on Thursday, May 28 from  to  Call 928-8208.

     The Pāhala location is Kaʻū District Gym at 96-1149 Kamani Street, distributed by the ʻO Kaʻū Kākou Pantry, on Tuesday, May 26,  Call The Food Basket, 933-6030.
     The Volcano location is Cooper Center at 19-4030 Wright Road Wednesday, May 27 from 10 a.m. to noon. Call Kehau at 443-4130.


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.

The Next Learning Packet and Student Resource Distribution for Nāʻālehu Elementary School Students will be Monday, May 11. The packets are designed for learning at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, and can be picked up every two weeks. One family member may pick up for several students in the same family. Students need not be present for the learning resources to be retrieved. Please note the grade of each child. Distribution times are organized by the first letter of the student's last name at the site closest to their home. Supplies will be given out simultaneously.
     Everyone is asked to observe social distancing rules, staying 6 feet away from others during pick-up. See the school website, naalehuel.hidoe.us, for more information and updates.
     Distribution at Nāʻālehu Elementary has pick-up from 8 a.m - 8:20 a.m. for A-H;  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.
     Distribution at Discovery Harbour Community Center has pick-up from 8 a.m - 8:20 a.m. for A-H;  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.
     Distribution at Ocean View Mālama Market has pick-up from  for A-H,  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.

     Distribution at Ocean View Community Center has pick-up from  for A-H,  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.
     Those who come to campus to pick up free student breakfasts are encouraged to also pick up their packets at the same time.

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.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.







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