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Ka`u News Briefs Friday, May 1, 2015

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Visitors and local residents explored the old plantation water system during two days of hikes sponsored by Ka`u Coffee Mill as part of then days of activities during the Ka`u Coffee Festival. Repairs to the water systems between Kapapala Ranch and Wai`ohinu are in the planning by Ka`u Agricultural Water Cooperative District. Photos by Jesse Tunison
HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK’S draft general management plan, wilderness study and environmental impact statement is now available for public review.
Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park seeks public input
on a draft document.
      General management plans are intended to be long-term documents that establish and articulate a management philosophy and framework for decision making and problem solving in national parks. In the 548-page document, three alternatives for Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park are presented. Each alternative offers a different approach to protecting and managing park resources, using facilities and providing a range of access and visitor experiences to meet the needs of local residents, off-island visitors and students of all ages. These alternatives were developed with the intent to include and celebrate Native Hawaiian values such as malama `aina (nourishing and taking care of the land) and kuleana (responsibility).
       These alternatives are the result of five years of public scoping and comment, interdisciplinary research, field assessments, stakeholder discussions and Native Hawaiian consultation and are based upon the park’s purpose and significance, issues that need to be addressed, legal mandates and public comments provided on the preliminary alternatives.


      “We encourage everyone to give these alternatives serious consideration, take the time to comment and continue to stay involved to help your national park determine how this national and international treasure will be protected and managed over the next 20 years,” said Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando.
      To review the DGMP/WS/EIS and provide comments online, see http://parkplanning.nps.gov/havogmp.
      The park will host a talk story session at Kilauea Visitor Center on June 10 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. to answer questions and take comments. In addition, a formal wilderness hearing will be held during this meeting to receive comments specific to the wilderness study.
      Comments can also be mailed to Superintendent, Attn: DGMP/WS/EIS, PO Box 52, Hawaii National Park, HI 96718-0052. The public comment period will remain open through June 30.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Hikers follow recently laid pipe next to the old flume
system on the Ka`u Mountain Water System Hikes.
THE 2015 KA`U MOUNTAIN WATER SYSTEMS HIKE was extended an extra day this year to accommodate those interested in joining the hike after all 35 spots for Wednesday’s event were filled. 
      Participants met with guides at Ka`u Coffee Mill on Wednesday and Thursday morning to be shuttled to the trailhead.
      The guided hike over moderate terrain wanders through the Hawaiian rainforest of `ohi`a, uluhe, hapu`u and many other native plant species. Hikers were serenaded by endemic birds like `apapane, `amakihi and `i`iwi. The path follows that of historic flume systems from the sugarcane era that have recently been repaired and are now being reused for agricultural purposes in the Wood Valley area. Eventually these flumes will help generate enough electricity to power Ka`u Coffee Mill and other agricultural endeavors, such as mechanically hulling macadamia nuts. Those on the walk saw development of the hydroelectric power project.
      Hikers were welcomed to take a further journey to the natural water source, a tunnel that contains a naturally forming pool of fresh water filtered by the native rainforest.
      Participants were invited to sit and appreciate the natural beauty of their surroundings, refreshments, pre-packed lunches and talk story about their journey. This official Ka`u Coffee Festival event was designed and offered by Ka`u Coffee Mill, a subsidiary of Edmund C. Olson Trust II.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.
 
OFFICE OF HAWAIIAN AFFAIRS, which originally supported the Thirty Meter Telescope, yesterday rescinded its support following opposition by Native Hawaiians and their supporters and arrests of 31 of them.
      According to a story by Richard Wiens in Civil Beat, Trustee Peter Apo said, “We are back to square one. We want to go back and review the documents.” Apo said the board’s decision was based on new information received since 2009, including several issues raised about the overall management of Mauna Kea.
      “This was an opportunity I think for us to try to hit a reset button and begin to review and take another look at the public trust responsibility that the state has to Hawaiians and walk that trail again,” Apo told Wiens.
      Kealoha Pisciotta, one of those arrested last month, was disappointed that OHA did not decide to oppose the project outright. “If they said they actually oppose it, I think it would have helped because we could have said ‘OHA is not in support of this.’ What are we saying now? What does it really mean?” she asked. 
      Henry Yang, chair of TMT Observatory Board, said, “We are naturally disappointed that the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has changed its position on the Thirty Meter Telescope project. However, we are by no means discouraged. We must now redouble our commitment to respectfully continuing dialogue and engagement with OHA and all other stakeholders.”
      See civilbeat.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Lava that overflowed onto the floor of Halema`uma`u crater is visible at center,
with the vent at right. Photo from USGS/HVO
THE LAVA LAKE WITHIN HALEMA`UMA`U Crater remains at or just below the rim of the Overlook crater, according to Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. The lake did not overflow onto the floor of the crater over the past day. Yesterday afternoon, the lava level was one yard below the crater floor. 
      This morning, the lava level was slightly higher and very close to the rim of the Overlook crater.
      According to HVO, recent overflows have accumulated and built the rim of the Overlook crater up a few yards above the crater floor.
      See updates at hvo.wr.usgs.gov.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I FARM BUREAU FEDERATION and Project Vision Hawai`i are two organizations with a Ka`u presence approved by state House and Senate budget conferees to receive a portion of $28 million in Grants-in-Aid. 
A bridge carried water and hikers across a gulch on the
Ka`u Mountain Water System route.
      The funds go to organizations serving the public and working to improve the state of Hawai`i. Total appropriations amounted to nearly $20 million in capital improvement projects funding and $8 million in operating funds. The funding agreements were made as lawmakers agreed on House Bill 500, relating to the state budget. 
      HFBF, which requested $750,000, would receive $350,000 for its Food Safety Viability for Hawai`i’s Farmers program.
      Project Vision Hawai`i, which brings its van to Ka`u for vision checks, would receive $155, 770, its requested amount, to expand its statewide keiki and adult health screening and vision correction services for poor and medically access-challenged residents.
      Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island, which applied for a $150,000 grant for its Hua Ola Puna & Pahala project, did not receive funding.
      The agreement culminated nearly two weeks of discussions on a wide range of issues such as social services, mass transit, healthcare, education, the environment and support for statewide government services. HB500, CD1 now goes before the full House and Senate for a final vote.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

PARTICIPANTS LEARN ABOUT FORMATION and various uses of Pu`u o Lokuana and enjoy a breathtaking view of lower Ka`u on a moderately difficult 0.4-mile hike to the top of the grassy cinder cone. The guided hike takes place tomorrow from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Kahuku unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.

KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL EVENTS continue through Sunday. Details are at www.kaucoffeefest.com.

John Cross talks story with participants one of two Ka`u Mountain Water System
Hikes, events leading up to tomorrow's Ka`u Coffee Festival Ho`olaule`a.
DURING KA`U STAR GAZING today from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., participants travel to the summit of Makanau to observe the heavens. $35 includes refreshments and shuttle transportation. kaucoffeemill.com or 928-0550.

KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL HO`OLAULE`A tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Pahala Community Center features a free, full day of music, hula, Ka`u Coffee Experience, educational displays and demonstrations, farm tours, vendors and meet the farmers. 
      Emcees Skylark and Debbie Ryder open the  ho`olaule`a at 9 a.m. Halau Hula Kalehuaki`eki`eika`iu performs at 9:15 a.m. followed by Hands of Time at 10 a.m. and Hannah’s Makana `Ohana hula halau at 10:45 a.m. Miss Ka`u Coffee Maria Miranda and the Miss Ka`u Coffee Court will appear at 11:30 a.m., with Miranda playing piano and her court sharing their talents.
Afternoon performances begin with Keaiwa and Demetrius Oliveira at 12:15 p.m., followed by Halau Hula O Leionalani at 1 p.m.; Bolo at 1:45 p.m; South Side Serenaders at 2:30 p.m., Keoki Kahumoku at 3 p.m.; and Kulele at 3:45 p.m. 
      The Buy Local, It Matters drawing for a $1,000 check takes place at 4 p.m. 
      Moses, Makana & Bradley play at 4:15 p.m., and Kookoo Bird & Friends play at 4:45 p.m.
      See kaucoffeefest.com. 

KA`U COFFEE COLLEGE on Sunday at 9 a.m. at Pahala Community Center is a free educational series featuring coffee researchers and industry professionals. Call Chris Manfredi at 929-9550.

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




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




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