Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Saturday, May 3, 2014

Bolo sings Kaiholena, about the misty mountain of Ka`u, with dancer Kamaluhia, of Volcano, at last night's Ka`u Coffee Festival kickoff event at Pahala Plantation House. Photo by Julia Neal
THE HAWAI`I STATE SENATE HAS ADJOURNED the 2014 legislative session, passing more than 240 bills that align with its initial priorities supporting Hawai`i’s keiki, kupuna, workers and the environment. Many of the notable bills this session focused on prevention and maintaining core services and projects. Lawmakers funded initiatives that address imminent problems (as part of the joint majority package) such as the rise in kupuna population, spread of invasive species and effects of climate control. Lawmakers also remained committed to providing continued support for the people most in need, including Hawai`i’s keiki, kupuna and workers who earn the lowest wages.
Miss Ka`u Coffee 2013 Tiare-Lee Shibuya dances last night at the opening of
the Ka`u Coffee Festival, as Miss Ka`u Peaberry candidates, anticipate
Sunday's pageant. Photo by Julia Neal
      The following bills have been forwarded to Gov. Neil Abercrombie, who has 45 days from the time a bill was received to veto it, sign it into law or allow it to pass into law without his signature.
  • SB2609 increases minimum wage rate to $7.75 per hour beginning on Jan.1, 2015; $8.50 per hour beginning on Jan.1, 2016; $9.25 per hour beginning on Jan. 1, 2017; and $10.10 per hour beginning on Jan. 1, 2018. It also increases the tip credit to 50 cents per hour beginning on Jan. 1, 2015 and 75 cents per hour beginning on Jan. 1, 2016, provided that beginning Jan. 1, 2015, the combined amount the employee receives in wages and tips is at least $7 more than the applicable minimum wage.
  • HB1671 increases the current cap on transient accommodations tax revenues to be distributed to the counties for two fiscal years and establishes a working group to determine future county allocation ceiling amounts and the appropriate division of the provision of public services between the state and counties.
  • HB1713 SD2 and SB2346 SD1 HD2 support Hawai`i’s kupuna through funding of aging, long-term care and investor education programs.
  • HB1714 establishes an interagency sea level rise vulnerability and adaptation committee under the State Department of Land and Natural Resources.
  • HB1716 appropriates $5 million to the Hawai`i Invasive Species Council for invasive species prevention, control, outreach, research, and planning, passed out of committee earlier this month.
  • HB2590 allows and appropriates funds for voter registration at absentee polling places beginning in 2016 and late voter registration, including on Election Day, beginning in 2018.
      See more regarding bill highlights in future Ka`u News Briefs.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

THE KANA`IOLOWALU ROLL OF NATIVE HAWAIIANS now lists 125,631 people, reports Susan Essoyan, of Honolulu Star-Advertiser. About 10,000 signed up after registration reopened March 17. The last day to sign up was Friday.
      Clyde Namuo, executive director of the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission, told Essoyan there are another 5,000 names to be certified, which would bring the total of signers to about 130,000.
Halau Hula O Leonalani opens up Ka`u Coffee Festival 2014, under the direction of
Kumu Hula Debbie Ryder, last night at Pahala Plantation House. Photo by Julia Neal
      The names form a base for the election of delegates to a constitutional convention, or Governance `Aha, where Hawaiians will consider different options for self-determination, including state, federal and international recognition as a nation.
      The registry, which was launched July 20, 2012, has signed up about 40,000 new registrants, including those still to be processed, Namuo said. Other names on the list came from previous registries such as Kau Inoa, Operation `Ohana and the Hawaiian Registry.
      A state law recognizing Native Hawaiians as the only indigenous people of the islands was passed in 2012. The law also called for creation of the commission to identify them.
      Fewer than 500 people contacted the commission to have their names removed from Kana`iolowalu Roll, Namuo said.
      See staradvertiser.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

DUE TO A BREAKDOWN YESTERDAY, the Ocean View water well has been under emergency repair. At this time, the well is in operation, and water is flowing into the storage tank, reports Department of Water Supply spokesperson Kanani Aton.
      The drinking water spigots will remain open for normal operating hours. While water spigots remain open for general community access, users are asked to limit their consumption to potable needs only. Community cooperation extends current water availability in the reservoir.
      Although spigots are open, the standpipe facility for water haulers is closed until Monday, May 5.
      For more information, call 961-8790.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Keoki Kahumoku & the `Ukulele Kids with friends sang songs of the late DennisKamakahi, one of their teachers during last night's
 party for the Ka`u Coffee Festival that runs through May 11. Photo by Julia Neal
MAY IS ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH. The observance originally began as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week, which was established through a joint U.S. Congressional resolution in 1978. The month of May was chosen due to two important milestones in Asian/Pacific American history: May 7, 1843, when the first Japanese immigrants arrived in the United States, and May 10, 1869, when the first transcontinental railroad was completed with substantial contributions from Chinese immigrant workers.
      “While celebrating my own Pacific Island heritage, I am proud to honor the unique culture and rich tradition of all Asian American and Pacific Islanders,” said Ka`u’s U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. “Throughout our nation’s history, AAPIs have made tremendous contributions to our communities as leaders at every level. Leaders like Hawai`i’s Sen. Daniel Inouye and Sen. Daniel Akaka have broken through barriers, leading the way for generations to follow. Our own Congresswoman Patsy Takemoto Mink was a champion for women and equal treatment throughout her life. Because of these leaders, our communities and our nation are stronger, and our future is brighter.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL KICKOFF PA`INA last night drew a crowd to the free event at Pahala Plantation House for music, food and hula. Ka`u Coffee Growers Cooperative President Gloria Camba welcomed farmers, neighbors and visitors to the ten days of activities that wrap up with the Ho`olaule`a Saturday, May 10 at Pahala Community Center and Ka`u Coffee College on Sunday, May 11. Last night’s performers included some of those performing at the Ho`olaule`a, including Keoki Kahumoku and his `Ukulele Kids, Bolo and hula dancer Kamaluhia, and Halau Hula O Leionalani, with Kumu Debbie Ryder. Among those attending was the cultural ambassador from La Reunion, a volcanic island off Africa in the Indian Ocean governed by France, which has similar agriculture to Ka`u and is developing a sister relationship with the Big Island. Also on hand was state Rep. Richard Creagan.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

TASTING SUCCESS: THIRD ANNUAL KA`U FARMERS’ TABLE is set for today from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Kalaekilohana Inn & Retreat
. The event, which has been sold out every year, features locally sourced fine dining, and premium, live entertainment.
      See kau-hawaii.com or call 939-8052 for more information.

THE PUBLIC IS INVITED TO THE Triple C Recipe Contest tomorrow at noon at Ka`u Coffee Mill. The event includes free coffee and recipe tastings, along with entertainment by Keoki Kahumoku and the `Ukulele Kids.
      Discovering the top original recipes for cookies, candies and cakes infused with a Ka`u Coffee flavor is the goal of the contest.
      Participants earn up to $500 in prizes for the best recipes in adult and student categories.

KA`U COFFEE MILL ALSO HOSTS the Miss Ka`u Coffee and Miss Ka`u Peaberry Pageant tomorrow, with doors opening at 6 p.m. Three young Ka`u ladies are vying for Miss Ka`u Coffee, while five keiki participate in Miss Ka`u Peaberry.

KA`U SCHOOL OF THE ARTS SPONSORS its Spring Fling today until 4 p.m. in the gardens of Punalu`u Bake Shop. The event features art and entertainment by Ka`u residents.
      For more information, call 854-1540.

KA `OHANA O HONU`APO INVITES KA`U RESIDENTS to Sunday in the Park, tomorrow from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. The event features La`au Lapa`au, Hawaiian Healing, with Momi Subiano. For more information, email kaohanaohonuapo@gmail.com.


See kaucalendar.com/Directory2014.swf.

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