Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Hilo Civil Air Patrol cadets post and retire the colors at Kilauea Military Camp Memorial Day ceremony yesterday.
  Photos by Elene Rizzo-Kuhn/KMC
MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONIES AT KILAUEA MILITARY CAMP yesterday drew stories of honor and remembrance. Guest Speaker TSgt Rita Miller, of the 291st Combat Communications Squadron in Hilo, talked about her cousin who lost his life from small arms enemy fire while serving with the Army, First Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment deployed to Iraq in 2007. She said her own visit to Arlington National Cemetery and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier near Washington, D.C. helped her to feel very emotional in the presence of men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice.
TSgt Rita Miller, of the 291st Combat
 Communications Squadron, Hilo.
LCDR Shawn Dweese, Commanding
Officer, Coast Guard Cutter KISKA, Hilo
    Keynote Speaker LCDR Shawn Deweese, Commanding Officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter KISKA in Hilo, talked about his travels throughout the islands and afar, which helped him to understand the importance of standing up for one's beliefs. He commended those who attended the ceremonies yesterday for taking action to honor those who lost their lives in support of their country.
     Ray Gandy performed Taps on trumpet. Raymond Dustin performed Amazing Grace on bagpipes. Hilo Civil Air Patrol cadets, under the direction of Major Ruth Statler, posted and retired the colors.
     The ceremony is usually held on the parade field at KMC but was brought indoors for shelter from rain. About 140 people attended the ceremony. A special Memorial Day dinner followed the ceremony.

Ray Grandy played trumpet and Raymond Dutin played bagpipes at yesterday's
Memorial Day ceremony at Kilauea Military Camp.
THE HAWAI`I REPUBLICAN PARTY has outlined its platform. During its statewide convention held earlier this month on O`ahu, the 300 Republican delegates passed eight resolutions, addressing such issues as reform to the Jones Act, taxes and education. Republicans lauded their major candidate for governor, former Lt. Governor Duke Ainoa, who said recently that the "Republican platform is all about trust, respect and balance."
     The Party also elected a new chair, Pat Saiki, who was the first Republican from the state of Hawai`i to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. She also served in the state House of Representatives and Senate. A former Hilo school teacher, she headed the U.S. Small Business Administration under the Presidency of George H.W. Bush.  
     In a statement, Saiki she said that during the convention, Hawai`i Republicans reaffirmed their LLIFE platform "of Liberty, Limited Government, Individual Responsibility, Fiscal Accountability and Equality of Opportunity."
     She and other leaders said the Republicans want to register 25,000 more members before the November General Election.
    One resolution in the new Hawai`i Republican Platform is supported by many Democrats and Republicans. It calls for an adjustment of the Jones Act, which prevents foreign built, owned and managed ships from transporting cargo and passengers between U.S. ports. The Repubican platform calls on congress to exempt Hawai`i, Puerto Rico, Alaska and Guam, allowing them to be served by foreign ships coming from other U.S. ports. Reform could lower the cost of exporting and importing food and other cargo by sea between Hawai`i and the mainland, as well as encourage more cruise ships to come to the islands. It could also lower the cost of energy, by lowering fuel transportation costs. To make the change, the 1920 federal act would have to be amended or repealed by congress. Its original intention was to protect U.S. ship building interests and to preserve a fleet of U.S. owned ships that could be used during emergencies, such as wartime. However, the cost of building ships in the U.S. is much higher than such places as Japan and China, making the cost of domestic ocean transport very expensive.
Hawai`i state's first Republican member to congress, Pat Saiki, was elected recently to chair the Hawai`i Republican Party.
Photo from Hawai`i Republican Party
     As reported today in the Hawai`i Reporter, the new Chair of the Hawai`i Republican Party told Michael Hansen, chair of the Hawai`i Shippers Council, that "Many in politics have expressed their concern over the high cost of living here in Hawai`i. Being the most expensive state in which to live, with goods and services including food costs higher than any other state in the nation, is of real concern to our people. But few in power today have done much to alleviate this situation. Getting an exemption from the Jones Act, as expressed in the Resolution recently passed by our Republican Party is one of the ways by which we can effectively change things for the better. Our Party is committed to finding such solutions to a serious problem and we seek support for our candidates to lead the way," said Saiki.
New Republican Party Chair for Hawai`i, Pat Saiki with Sam Slom, sole Republican
in the state Senate.  Photo from Hawai`i Republican Party
      Candidate Aiona said that “The Jones act is a federal regulation that affects all the people of Hawai`i. It is time for all stakeholders to come together and resolve this issue in a manner that is in the best interests of our state. I am encouraged and excited by the Hawai`i Shipping Council's recent proposal and the Republican Party's resolution relating to the Jones Act. I look forward to providing the leadership needed for this resolution.”
   According to Hawai`i Reporter, U.S. Senatorial candidate Campbell “Cam” Cavasso, a Republican who will likely face either U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz or U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa in November, declared, 'It is time for our Hawai`i to free our people from the bonds of federal regulations which artificially increase the cost of living for every family by multiplied thousands of dollars. It is time to set our people free from extreme, external regulations costing every man, woman, and child in Hawai`i. We can do this now.'"
    Hawai`i Reporter also included remarks by Hawai`i state Rep. Gene Ward, a Republican and minority leader emeritus: "As the cost to feed ourselves escalates and we continue to import over 80 percent of everything we consume, the most sustainable approach to food security in Hawai`i is lowering the cost of living by lowering the cost of shipping. We know we can cut the grocery bills of Hawai`i's struggling families through a minor exemption to the Jones Act-but we have not acted. Now is the time to press for real food security and sustainability by using all the ships in the world to come to our shores, not just a select expensive few under the Jones Act. If only a fraction of the people understood the Jones Act and how it punishes us, Hawai`i would be quick to act for an exemption as we have done with Obama Care to protect our Pre-Paid Healthcare in Hawai`i. National security will not be effected and in their hearts, the naysayers know this is true."
Duke Aiona is the most prominent Republican contender for governor. To his left is
Republican congressional candidate Charles Djou. Photo from Hawai`i Republican Party
    Republican state Senator Sam Slom, minority leader and introducer of a Jones Act reform resolution, told Hawai`i Reporter,"Thanks to the work of the Hawai`i Shippers Council and others, I feel after 20 years of activity, the public has a better understanding of the cost impact of the Jones Act and our options. We welcome support from the Hawai`i Republican Party but reiterate this reform is a non-partisan issue that negatively affects all residents of Hawai`i. We welcome future support from political, social and business organizations. We can win this issue."
    Regarding Memorial Day, Saiki released a statement quoting Ronald Reagan: "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same."

THERE IS NO POSITION ON GMO LABELING for Ka`u Farm Bureau, said Chris Manfredi, former chief of the organization and now president of the statewide Hawai`i Farm Bureau Federation. He was referring to the story in yesterday's Ka`u News Briefs, which stated that the local Farm Bureau opposed labeling. Manfredi said this morning that he has testified on the state level, opposing local GMO labeling laws, saying that labeling should be regulated on a federal level. He said this morning that Ka`u Farm Bureau "has never taken a position on GMO labeling." He said the Farm Bureau supports all kinds of agriculture.
  Testimony given by Manfredi last September to the County Council involved a bill to require GMO farms to register. Manfredi submitted testimony on behalf of the Ka`u Farm Bureau stating that the organization opposed registration of GMO farms. He testified, "There are numerous studies that indicate that transgenic crops are safe" and that farmers who register GMO "could become targets of eco-terrorism and enviro-terrorism." See more of his testimony at http://kaunewsbriefs.blogspot.com/2013/09/kaus-county-council-member-brenda-ford.html
     A bill to require registration of GMO farms was introduced by Ka`u County Council member Brenda Ford. Another version that subsequently passed was introduced by County Council member Margaret Wille. It is now tied up in legal proceedings between the county and GMO advocates.



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