Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Friday, May 29, 2015

Ka`u residents can apply for seats on Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary's advisory board. Map from HIHWNMS
HAWAI`I COUNTY PROSECUTOR MITCH ROTH is dropping trespassing charges against some of the 31 protestors arrested on Mauna Kea. The arrests occurred on April 2 after access was blocked to construction workers who were en route to the summit to begin work on the Thirty Meter Telescope.
Mitch Roth Photo by Chuck Green
      Roth’s action affects about 10 of those arrested. According to Jennifer Sinco Kelleher, of Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the charges may be re-filed based on the Prosecuting Attorney’s continued review of police reports and video taken at the site.
      Kealoha Pisciotta, a leader of the effort to stop construction of telescope, told Sinco Kelleher she’s happy to hear Roth’s decision. “Fundamentally and morally, how can it be trespassing in our house of worship and prayer?” she said.
      See staradvertiser.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HEP-FREE HAWAI`I RECENTLY RE-LAUNCHED the Micronesian Education Liver Wellness Program to raise awareness about hepatitis B among Micronesian communities living in Hawai`i. 
      Hawai`i has the highest rate of liver cancer in the U.S., and the leading cause of liver cancer in Hawai`i is hepatitis B. According to Hawai`i Department of Health, about 40,000 people in Hawai`i may be living with hepatitis B, and most are unaware of their infection. The people most at risk for hepatitis B are those born in Asia and the Pacific, including Republic of Marshall Islands and Federated States of Micronesia. Unfortunately, most of these people, including those in Ka`u’s large Marshallese community, do not get tested or do not get medical care to manage hepatitis B.
      MELWP provides free educational “talk story” sessions for Micronesian community members to increase conversation and reduce stigma around this deadly disease. “We don’t have to let hepatitis take our communities. We can take action,” said Kenson Alik, MELWP Director and a hepatitis B survivor. “We hope that MELWP will empower local Micronesian communities to fight back against hepatitis. As someone who has been through it, I know that this is important for the health of our community!”
      According to Alik, community members can take action against hepatitis B by getting educated about hepatitis B, getting tested, getting vaccinated and getting treated.
      Alik was one of five people from Hawai`i selected for a Caring Ambassadors scholarship to advocate for hepatitis B prevention in Washington, D.C. With the support of Hep-Free Hawai`i, he met with Hawai`i legislators to share the importance of increased hepatitis B services for all Asians and Pacific Islanders, especially communities born in Micronesia.
      “I have experienced many difficulties due to hepatitis B,” stated Alik. “I want to ensure that no one else from my Micronesian community has to deal with liver cancer or liver transplant. Together, we can talk about this disease, and we can prevent it!”
      For more information on how to participate in MELWP, contact Alik at 808-783-9756 or kenalik04@yahoo.com.
      Also see hepfreehawaii.org or follow @hepfreehawaii on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

EXPENDITURES FOR HAWAI`I’S VISITOR INDUSTRY have started to stabilize with a boost in spending in March and April (up three percent and 5.4 percent respectively), Hawai`i Tourism Authority reported. This has helped to bring year-to-date spending on par with last year, reaching nearly $5 billion in total expenditures through April 2015 (+0.2 percent). As a result, Hawai`i’s visitor industry’s contribution in state tax revenue is also comparable to last year, up 0.2 percent to $532 million.
       “Visitor arrivals and spending from the core U.S. West market have continued to increase, and we anticipate that it will remain strong through the first half of the year,” said Ronald Williams, HTA’s Chief Executive Officer. While arrivals from Japan for April 2015 were up slightly, expenditures for the month and year-to-date remain down by double-digits, as the dollar continues to strengthen against the yen. 
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

KA`U RESIDENTS HAVE FOUR MORE DAYS to provide feedback about the draft Ka`u Community Development Plan that was released in March. The deadline is Monday. 
      “Mahalo to the hundreds of people who have attended one of the recent CDP events or sent in written comment!” said planner Ron Whitmore. “Your questions and suggestions are extremely helpful to Steering Committee members and the CDP Planning Team. They will use your feedback to make improvements to the Draft CDP.”
       Comments are accepted:
      Copies of the draft Ka`u CDP are available at local libraries and community centers and online at kaucdp.info.    
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Humpback whale sings in sanctuary waters.
Photo from HIHWNMS
HAWAIIAN ISLANDS HUMPBACK WHALE National Marine Sanctuary is seeking to fill seven alternate and one primary seat on its advisory council. The council ensures public participation in sanctuary matters and provides advice to sanctuary management.
      “The members of our advisory council represent an extremely important element of our community,” said Malia Chow, sanctuary superintendent. “Their input, experience and expertise assist sanctuary managers in making informed and timely decisions on how best to protect and conserve our important cultural and natural resources.” 
      The sanctuary is accepting applications for seats in commercial shipping, Hawai`i County, citizen-at-large, education, tourism and whale watching.
      Candidates are selected based on their expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying, community and professional affiliations and views regarding protection and management of marine resources. Applicants who are chosen as members or alternates should expect to serve a two-year term.
      Applications are due June 30. To receive an application kit or for further information, contact council coordinator Shannon Lyday at Shannon.Lyday@noaa.gov or 808-725-5905 or see hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov/council/council_app_accepting.html.
      Completed applications should be submitted to Inouye Regional Center, ATTN: NOS/HIHWNMS/Shannon Lyday, 1845 Wasp Blvd, Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Emmett Enriques is BIIF Player of the
Year. Photo from Julie Enriques
KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOLS’ EMMETT ENRIQUES, of Punalu`u, is Big Island Interscholastic Federation Division I Volleyball Player of the Year. In his junior and senior years, Enriques led the Warriors to become BIIF Division I champions and state runners-up. The senior, who is also on the division’s first team, has signed to play for Cal Baptist.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

PARTICIPANTS LEARN ABOUT THE VITAL ROLE of `ohi`a lehua in native Hawaiian forests, the many forms of the `ohi`a lehua tree and its flower on an easy one-mile walk Sunday at 9:30 a.m. at Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free.

KA`U RURAL HEALTH COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION, Inc. provides information about its pilot Community Health Worker Program at a meeting Friday, June 12 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at Ka`u Resource & Distance Learning Center in Pahala. Registration is required. Call 928-0101 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

LOCAL PAPER MAKER AND ARTIST Susan O’Malley is offering four sessions of Japanese stab bookbinding. Times are 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 27 and Monday, July 13. All sessions are held at Ocean View Community Center. 
Ka`u residents can learn Japanese stab bookbinding this summer.
Photo from Susan O`Malley
      Participants create a traditional Japanese stab binding book featuring handmade paper. O’Malley teaches basic techniques of bookbinding, including tearing paper by hand, making covers, preparing the text block, working with stitch templates and sewing with waxed linen thread. Each participant leaves with a soft-bound book and skills to create more hand-bound books. The workshop also includes an introduction to the world of handmade books and an opportunity to view and handle a collection of professionally made examples.
      $20 includes kit instructions and all supplies to make one book. Each kit contains two cover sheets, 10 text pages, needle, linen thread, printed directions and three templates of traditional binding stitches.
      Enrollment is limited to six participants each session, and beginners are welcome. Register at ovcahawaii@gmail.com.


See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_May2015.pdf.
See kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.pdf and

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