Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cultural practitioners and rangers share the art of lauhala weaving tomorrow in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Photo from NPS
WHO WILL BE THE NEXT MISS KA`U COFFEE QUEEN? Four young Ka`u women are hoping to earn the title of Miss Ka`u Coffee on Sunday, April 26 at Pahala Community Center at 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10 each and available from contenders and their families.
Maria Caroline Miranda
Joyce Anne Ibasan
      All candidates are from families deeply embedded in the Ka`u Coffee industry. In alphabetical order:
      Joyce Anne Ibasan was born on Jan. 26, 1994 in Dagupan, the Philippines. She is the daughter of Orlando Ibasan and Jocelyn Tamayo, of Pahala. The 21-year-old is a 2012 graduate of Ka`u High School. Ibasan graduates this spring with an Associate of Arts degree in administration of justice from Hawai`i Community College and plans to transfer to University of Hawai`i in Hilo to major in criminal justice. She works fulltime at Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. She completed two high school Youth Ranger internships with the interpretation and eruption crew/protection division of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park and continues in park internship programs. Ibasan is a fulltime student and fulltime employee.
      Some of her family members recently started a Ka`u Coffee farm above Wood Valley Road. Her talents are singing and dancing.
       Maria Caroline Miranda was born on June 4, 1992 in the California agricultural town of Visalia in the San Joaquin Valley. She is the daughter of award-winning coffee farmers Jose and Berta Miranda, of Discovery Harbour. The 23-year-old graduated from high school through Safe Haven Christian Co-op in 2012. She plans to study nursing at University of Hawai`i in Hilo after completing an Associate of Arts degree at Hawai`i Community College. At HCC, Miranda interned as a laboratory assistant. She is a Ka`u Chamber of Commerce scholarship winner. She volunteers at Ka`u Hospital, visiting residential patients, some with no family. Miranda works in her family Ka`u Coffee business, from picking to processing and marketing. She is developing a Sunday school program for Amazing Grace Baptist Church of South Point. Her talent is playing piano and singing.
Louise Vivien Santos
Jennifer Flores Tabios
       Louise Vivien Santos was born on Dec. 2, 1994 in Ilocos Norte in the Philippines. She is the daughter of Arnel and Amelita Santos, of Pahala, her father a schoolteacher and mother an employee of a macadamia orchard. 
      Her aunt Anabelle Orcino is a Ka`u Coffee farmer, and Santos helps with the business. The 20-year-old graduated from Ka`u High School in 2013. Santos also graduated from high school with honors in the Philippines. She is a Ka`u Chamber of Commerce scholarship winner who studies in the nursing program at University of Hawai`i – Hilo. She aspires to become a nurse at Ka`u Hospital. She was a member of the National Honor Society, Interact Club and Akamai Finance Academy and has interned with the international Longshore & Warehouse Union. She has tutored at Pahala and Na`alehu schools, won statewide awards for science and engineering projects and speaks several languages. Her talent is playing the violin.
      Jennifer Flores Tabios was born Jan. 11, 1997 on the Big Island. She is the daughter of William and Grace Tabios, of Na`alehu. The 18-year-old is a senior at Ka`u High School. She serves as vice president of the student body and is a member of National Honor Society and the Interact Club. She has earned one of the highest grade-point averages in her class. At the 2015 Science and Engineering Fair at `Imiloa, she won best project for astronomy and earned the Galileo Award for her experiment on surface tension. She works with her family’s The Rising Sun Ka`u Coffee, which has taken top awards at the international Specialty Coffee Association of America competition. She also works with the Will & Grace store in Na`alehu. Upon graduation, Tabios hopes to attend UCLA where she plans to study neurology. Her talent is singing and playing `ukulele.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Rep. Richard Creagan
THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON ENERGY and Environmental Protection is scheduled to decide on a resolution regarding Hawaiian Electric Co.’s proposed merger with NextEra Energy today. HR 158 requests that the Public Utilities Commission protect the public interest in reviewing the proposed acquisition to determine whether NextEra is likely to act in the long-term best interests of Hawai`i ratepayers and whether the transaction is in the long-term public interest, including the state’s ability to achieve its renewable energy goals. It also requests that the PUC consider, at a minimum, imposing strict conditions to ensure the bedrock principles of reliability, reasonable rates, competition and customer choice and protecting local jobs and economic benefits to the state. 
      Ka`u’s Rep. Richard Creagan told Chris D’Angelo, of West Hawai`i Today, that public perception is that the merger “is being rushed forward, which is unacceptable given that it will change lives across the state for a long time.” Creagan also said concerns about NextEra are “real, not rumors” and that the company is not a “white knight coming in to save Hawaiians” from high energy bills.
      “They’re not coming in here to lose money. They’re coming in here to make money,” he said.
      Creagan also told D’Angelo that Hawai`i Island should be given a chance to pursue an independent cooperative.
      See westhawaiitoday.com.
     To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

NEXTERA ENERGY, INC., HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC CO. and Hawai`i Electric Light Company yesterday announced that the companies will be hosting open house informational meetings to introduce residents to NextEra Energy and the benefits of the companies’ pending merger as well as to provide members of the public with the opportunity to provide input directly to company officials.
      “Since we announced our merger late last year, we’ve been gratified at the reception we’ve received as well as the high level of interest in this important topic for Hawai`i,” said Eric Gleason, president of NextEra Energy Hawai`i, LLC. “NextEra Energy shares Hawaiian Electric’s vision of increasing renewable energy, modernizing its grid, reducing Hawai`i’s dependence on imported oil, integrating more rooftop solar energy and, importantly, lowering customer bills. We recognize that addressing Hawai`i’s energy challenges requires Hawai`i-specific energy solutions, and that is why we look forward to meeting with and listening to residents across Hawai`i. The meetings will provide us with the opportunity to receive valuable feedback while allowing residents to learn more about NextEra Energy and the significant near- and long-term benefits this merger will deliver to Hawaiian Electric customers and the state of Hawai`i.”
      Alan Oshima, Hawaiian Electric’s president and chief executive officer, said, “In selecting NextEra Energy as our partner, we will join a company that shares our community and environmental values, has a proven track record of lowering electric bills, is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun, and is committed to rooftop solar in Hawai`i. We can’t imagine a better match to help us accelerate the clean energy transformation we all want for Hawai`i. We hope our customers will take the opportunity to meet members of the NextEra Energy team and learn firsthand why NextEra Energy is the right partner to help us achieve a cleaner and more affordable energy future for Hawai`i.” 
      Each open house meeting will be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Meetings are on Monday, April 13 at Hilo and Pahoa High School Cafeterias and Tuesday, April 14 at Kealakehe High School Cafeteria and Hawai`i Preparatory Academy’s Village Campus Dining Hall.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Beekeepers James Severtson and Carol Conner Photo from Aloha Honey Co.
LITTLE LEAGUE REGISTRATION is now open for children from nine to 12 years old. Registration forms and fees of $55 are due by this Friday. All parents or guardians must bring participants’ birth certificates and three documents proving residency or one document supporting school enrollment. Anyone interested can stop by Na`alehu Park in the afternoons or call Jolisa Masters at 640-2135. 

BEEKEEPERS JAMES SEVERTSON AND CAROL CONNER discuss Bees In Hawai`i: Trouble in Paradise? today at After Dark in the Park. The program takes place at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. $2 donations support After Dark programs. Park entrance fees apply.

HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK rangers and cultural practitioners share the art of pandanus weaving and how to prepare leaves tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center lanai. Free; park entrance fees apply.


See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_March2015.pdf.
See kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.pdf and

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