Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015

The state has imposed a quarantine on intrastate movement of `ohi`a material to prevent the spread of `ohi`a wilt, which causes rapid browning of affected tree crowns and death. Photos from UH-CTAHR
KA`U COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PLAN Steering Committee discussed development at Discovery Harbour at their meeting yesterday. The committee preliminarily agreed to, on the CDP land use policy map, change the Land Use Pattern Allocation Guide map category from Rural to Low Density Urban for the subdivision, except the golf course. The LDU category is defined to include residential, with ancillary community and public uses, and neighborhood and convenience-type commercial uses. Overall residential density may be up to six units per acre.
Discovery Harbour's classification would change from Rural to Low Density
Urban under a proposed CDP policy. Map from Ka`u CDP
      CDP Project Manager Ron Whitmore explained that the LUPAG map in the County General Plan is a broad, flexible design intended to guide the direction and quality of future developments in a coordinated and rational manner. It indicates the general location of various land uses in relation to each other.
      Discovery Harbour’s 824 house lots, many of them built on years ago, are classified Ag by the state and zoned for one-acre ag lots by the county. However, the lots are much smaller than one-acre ag zoning allows. Each is 15,000 square feet, an exception made years ago.
      “This CDP policy would not change zoning (Ag-1a for the house lots and Open for the ‘gateway’ lots), the state land use district (Agriculture), or the General Plan (Rural) in Discovery Harbour,” Whitmore said. “Uses that are not permitted in the SLU Ag district would still require either a Special Permit or a rezone. The change proposed last night would indicate community support for uses that are consistent with the LDU category – residential, community/public uses and neighborhood-scale commercial. County zones and their permitted uses that are consistent with the LDU category include single-family residential and low density, multi-family residential or residential-commercial mixed use.”
      The committee meets again this Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Na`alehu Community Center to discuss economic development in Ka`u. The public is invited and welcome to provide testimony.
      More information about the Ka`u CDP is available at kaucdp.info.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Ignacio could reach Ka`u late Monday as a hurricane. Map from NOAA
KA`U IS NOW IN TROPICAL STORM IGNACIO’S cone of uncertainty, according to the National Hurricane Center. The path could change and move to the north or south, forecasters said. The current track shows Ignacio becoming a hurricane within 24 hours and reaching Hawai`i late Monday.  
      The storm continues to strengthen with plenty of tightly curved bands around the center and an impressive outflow pattern. The environment appears favorable for further intensification with light-to-moderate shear and warm waters for the next several days.
       To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH ACTION in Volcano has lead to an arrest, Hawai`i County Police Department reported. 
      A 39-year-old man has been charged with trespassing and several drug offenses following action by a Neighborhood Watch member and other area residents who observed suspicious activity.
      At about 12:45 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 23, a resident observed an unknown man enter her property for the third time in several days and look into her house. The same man had been observed by several neighbors to be suspiciously walking onto other properties, and his photo had been circulated in the neighborhood.
      Upon learning of this latest incident, neighbors contacted their Neighborhood Watch representative, banded together, searched for the suspicious man and located him. After confronting him as a group, they called the police, who arrived 10 minutes later.
Kehaulaniokekai Ching 
      Police obtained consent to search a five-gallon bucket the residents had seen the man carrying when they confronted him. The bucket contained a clear plastic bag with meth residue, a cut straw with meth residue, 2.6 grams of dried marijuana and two unspent bullets.
      Kehaulaniokekai Ching, who has no permanent address, was arrested and taken to the Hilo police cellblock, where he was charged Monday with trespassing, promoting a dangerous drug, promoting a detrimental drug and possessing drug paraphernalia and ammunition. His bail was set at $5,500. He remained at the cellblock pending his initial court appearance yesterday.
      Police encourage members of the public to become involved in Neighborhood Watch groups and immediately report suspicious activity.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

ALTERNATING LANE CLOSURES at Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park’s entrance station begin today. A project to replace window frames in both entrance station booths result in closures for the next two weeks.
      The project is tentatively scheduled for completion on Thursday, Sept. 3. Motorists, cyclists and pedestrians entering the park should anticipate delays between noon and 10:30 p.m. for the duration of the project.
      Dates and times are subject to change, and the public will be notified if changes are necessary.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I BOARD OF AGRICULTURE approved an interim rule that imposes a quarantine on intrastate movement of `ohi`a plants and plant parts, including flowers, leaves, seeds, stems, twigs, cuttings, untreated wood, logs, mulch, greenwaste and frass (sawdust from boring beetles) from Hawai`i Island. Transport of such items may be only conducted with a permit issued by the Hawai`i Department of Agriculture. The interim rule will be in force for one year.
      The reason for the emergency quarantine measure is `ohi`a wilt, also known as rapid `ohi`a death, a deadly fungus that is attacking `ohi`a trees in East Hawai`i. `Ohi`a wilt was first noticed in 2010 in Puna. In 2014, the fungus was identified as Ceratocystis fimbriata by researchers at the U.S Department of Agriculture’s Daniel K. Inouye Agricultural Research Service. In 2014, it was estimated that the disease covered approximately 6,000 acres from Kalapana to Hilo and exhibited tree mortality rates of more than 50 percent. Currently, it is estimated to infest about 15,000 acres. So far, the disease has not been found on other islands. It is not known how the disease entered the state or where it came from.
Cross-section of an infected `ohi`a shows characteristic dark staining
of sapwood caused by Ceratocystis.
      “We don’t have all the answers about how the disease is transmitted,” said Scott Enright, Chair of Hawai`i Board of Agriculture. “However, the urgency to stop its spread is very clear. `Ohi`a makes up 50 percent of our native forests and watershed – resources that we just cannot risk losing.”
      It is suspected that the fungus enters plants through wounds. It causes the crowns of the `ohi`a to turn yellow and brown within days to weeks followed by death of the tree. The fungus also causes dark, nearly black, staining in the sapwood along the outer margins of the trunks.
      The interim rule will also restrict movement of soil from Hawai`i Island beginning in January 2016. Island nurseries were concerned that a restriction on soil from Hawai`i Island would hurt agricultural businesses. Although spores of the disease were found in soil, the delay was imposed to further research whether soil is able to transmit the disease and to develop testing protocols and treatment options for soil.
      Any person who violates the rule may be charged with a misdemeanor and fined not less than $100. The maximum fine is $10,000. For a second offense committed within five years of a prior conviction under this rule, the person or organization shall be fined not less than $500 and not more than $25,000.
      Interim rules are valid for only one year and are meant to address emergency situations, which gives the department time to develop more permanent rules.
      More information on `ohi`a wilt may be found at http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/blog/main/reportingohiawilt/ and http://www2.ctahr.hawaii.edu/forestry/disease/ohia_wilt.html.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAROLD BRACKEEN III WILL JOIN Hawai`i’s homeless programs office on Sept. 1. He will assist with administration of state and federal grants for shelters, outreach and other program activities. Brackeen is currently a program specialist with the Department of Human Services, Social Services Division. Prior to joining DHS, he was a housing director at Alternative Structures International and also served as a program coordinator with Hale Kipa, a program serving Hawai`i’s youth.
      The governor welcomed Scott Morishige, MSW, who officially moved into the governor’s office and began his duties as the governor’s coordinator on homelessness on Monday, Aug. 24.
Kaipo AhChong teaches lei making Friday.
Photo from VAC

      “The only way to solve homelessness in Hawai`i is to invest in our team and build the state’s capacity in targeted ways,” Gov. David Ige said. “Both of these men bring solid skills and experience to the task, and they will work with our partners to help meet the challenges our communities face.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

ALOHA FRIDAY PRESENTS lei making with Kaipo AhChong from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free; park entrance fees apply.

VA CENTER FOR VETERANS is open tomorrow and every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center. For more information, call David (last name not provided) at 329-0574.


BUSINESS SPACE IS AVAILABLE for rent at the open location where Kama`aina Kuts and Styles by Elise are located in Na`alehu. Call Corrine at 937-1840 for more information.
See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_August2015.pdf.

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

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