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Ka`u News Briefs Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014

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Aikane Plantation Coffee from Ka`u is now the namesake of a coffee shop and dinner house in Osaka, Japan.
Photos from Aikane Plantation
NEW WASTEWATER SYSTEM RULES for residences and businesses could raise the price of homes and commercial entities that currently use cesspools in Ka`u. The proposed state Department of Health regulations are aimed at further protecting drinking water sources and the environment.
Effects of new wastewater rules on Ka`u homes connected to gang cesspools
are still to be determined. Photo by Julia Neal
      One proposed new rule would not only prohibit the use of new cesspools but also require an upgrade to a septic system or connection to a sewer system within 180 days of the sale of any property with a cesspool. Whether this would affect property owners in such places as Na`alehu and Pahala where many homes are on gang cesspools left over from the plantation days but waiting for new sewage treatment plants to be built is still to be determined.
      Those selling or buying homes with existing cesspools would be told to install septic systems and within a few years could again have to pay to hook up to new community sewer lines.
      Ka`u’s County Council member-elect Maile Medeiros David said yesterday that she hopes Ka`u residents will weigh in with public comment. Written comments will be accepted through Thursday, Oct. 2, when a statewide public hearing will be held with videoconferencing at the Hawai`i District Health Office conference room at 1582 Kamehameha Ave. in Hilo. Doors opening at 10 a.m., and the hearing starts at 10:30 a.m.
      Among the many proposed wastewater regulations covered by the hearing are:
  • Prohibiting individual wastewater systems for developments with greater than 15 subdivided lots even when each home is on a lot that is an acre or larger; 
  • Restrictions to prevent direct discharge of effluent from an aerobic treatment unit into groundwater; 
  • Clarifying when a building modification would trigger an upgrade from a cesspool or other treatment system; 
  • Revising the flow per capita requirements for restaurants, barber shops and beauty salons; and 
  • Revising spill reporting requirements.
      To send comments by email and read the proposal, see health.hawaii.gov/wastewater/home/public_notice. Written comments can be sent to Wastewater Branch, Environmental Management Division, State Department of Health, 919 Ala Moana Blvd, Room 309, Honolulu, HI 96814-4920.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Bilingual sign shows offerings at
new business in Osaka, Japan.
AIKANE PLANTATION, one of Ka`u’s original coffee companies, its history dating back into the 1800s, headlines a new coffee shop and dinner house in Osaka, Japan. Partner Phil Becker said, “On opening day, customers had to wait two and a half to three hours to get in. We served Huli Huli chicken to get their attention.
      “It’s not your normal coffee shop you see in Japan. We offer a variety of food and have several tables for customers to sit down and relax.”
      Aikane Plantation Coffee farm is located between Pahala and Na`alehu on the old sugar cane haul route called Ka`alaiki Road.
      Aikane has represented Ka`u for the last decade at the Made in Hawai`i show in Honolulu each year and served up more than 4,800 sample cups of coffee over the three-day event this August. Customers came from as far away as New York and New Jersey, Becker said.
      See www.aikaneplantation.com. Call 808-927-2252.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

LAVA FROM KILAUEA VOLCANO was .3 miles from Kaohe Homesteads and headed that way this morning, according to a report from Hawai`i County Civil Defense, which launched door-to-door visits to Kaohe homes today. The county started work today on an alternate road for residents to reach communities that could be cut off by the lava flow should it cross Hwy 130 near or within Pahoa. The road will include Railroad Avenue and Government Beach Road, as well as the Hawaiian Beaches and Hawaiian Paradise Park communities. For films of the lava flow, maps and frequent updates, see www.bigislandvideonews.com. Also see daily updates at http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/activity/kilaueastatus.php.
   To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.  

COFFEE BERRY BORER RESEARCHERS are asking for participation from Ka`u Coffee growers. Goals of the research are to better understand Square-necked Grain Beetle (Cathartus quadricollis) ecology and predation and explore ways to increase its role in CBB Integrated Pest Management and suppression of CBB populations in coffee.
Carthartus quadricollis
Photo from BugGuide
      Cathartus quadricollis, a storage grain pest, is established in Hawai`i and has been found to assist in the control of Tropical Nut Borer on macadamia nut. TNB is a very close relative to CBB and is found in the same genus. They look very much alike. However, CBB is found on coffee, and TNB is found on macadamia nut.
      According to the researchers, cathartus has been found in coffee raisins that were infested by CBB. When these beetles were found in coffee raisins, many questions arose. Were they eating CBB, eggs and larvae? Are they found on all coffee farms? Do they feed on CBB in cherry, also?
      One objective for the research project is to determine the geographical distribution of cathartus by surveying for its presence or absence on coffee farms.
      Starting this week, research support staff will begin on-farm sampling of coffee raisins. Staff will be taking appointments via email and making phone calls to set-up farm visits. During these farm visits, staff will take a representative sample of raisins from the farms and take the samples back to the research station in Kainaliu to search for Cathartus in the sample. “Since CBB control techniques highly recommend the removal of all raisins from a coffee farm prior to the next coffee season, our sampling will also help you with raisin removal. We can’t remove raisin from the entire farm, but we can certainly get you started,” said UH-CTAHR assistant extension agent Andrea Kawabata.
      Email cathartusproject@gmail.com to set up an appointment for staff to visit and collect raisins to sample for Cathartus. Include name or name of the on-site farm manager, farm address, directions to the farm, TMK and phone number or best method of contact.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

State Sen. Mike Gabbard
STATE SENATE AND HOUSE LAWMAKERS have scheduled a hearing to get an update from the Hawaiian Electric Company and various solar organizations on the current status of solar interconnection and future plans for distributed generation. 
      Last September, HECO notified its customers of a policy change that would require permission from the company to proceed with the installation of a PV system. Since the policy change, many solar customers have been facing delays in getting their PV systems connected to the grid.
     “There are a lot of moving pieces right now, and we need to bring all stakeholders together to connect the dots,” said Sen. Mike Gabbard, chair of the Energy and Environment Committee. “We have solar companies and customers still very unhappy that they can’t connect to the grid. The bottom line is we want to know more about what has already been done and what’s planned for the future to ensure that solar continues to be an option for our residents.”
    The hearing is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 19 at 1 p.m. in Conference Room 325 of the Hawai`i State Capitol with Senate and House committees on energy and environment, and commerce and consumer protection. It can be viewed live on Olelo Channel 49.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.  

THE PUBLIC IS INVITED TO KA`U SCENIC BYWAY Committee’s meeting today at 5 p.m. at Na`alehu Methodist Church. On the agenda is finishing design of the Na`alehu Park kiosk. This is the last chance for input.
      For more information, email richmorrow@alohabroadband.net.

Friends of the Ka`u Libraries, who participate at Ka`u Plantation Days,
meet this evening at Pahala Plantation House.
FRIENDS OF THE KA`U LIBRARIES MEET TODAY from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Pahala Plantation House. Light refreshments are served for current and new members.
      Call Doris Davis at 928- 0919 or Ann Fontes at 987-7448 for more

IN SPORTS, THE TROJANS’ EIGHT-MAN football team hosts Pahoa tomorrow at 6:30 p.m., Ka`u High girls volleyball teams host Konawaena Saturday at 10 a.m. and bowling teams travel to play Kealakehe in Hilo.

KA`U’S STATE REP. RICHARD CREAGAN holds a public meeting Saturday at 10 a.m. at Ocean View Community Center. To be discussed will be money from the state Legislature that has already been approved. Creagan said he wants input from the community on how to use the funding. He will also take questions on other issues concerning Ka`u.

INTRODUCTION TO NATURAL FARMING is a presentation Saturday at 10 a.m. at Ka Lae Gardens, 92-8395 Mamalahoa Hwy in Ocean View on the makai side of Hwy 11, accessible from Kohala Street. Richard Perea, of Ka`u Natural Farming, said he is soliciting interest in natural farming and aims to make training and certification available to all at an affordable price.
      See Ka`u Natural Farming on Facebook or call 937-3010 for more information.

VOLCANO WINERY’S GRAPE HARVEST FESTIVAL is Sunday from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. All proceeds benefit STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) programs at Volcano School of Arts & Sciences. 
     The event includes music by Keoki Kahumoku and Friends, pupus by Volcano House and other area businesses, wine and a souvenir wine glass.
     Call 967-7772 to purchase $40 tickets. Last year’s event sold out.

SUPPORT OUR SPONSORS AT PAHALAPLANTATIONCOTTAGES.COM AND KAUCOFFEEMILL.COM. KA`U COFFEE MILL IS OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.






See kaucalendar.com/Directory2014.swf.




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