Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2015

Although Tropical Storm Jimena is well north of Hawai`i, the storm will pull moist air up from the south, creating hot and humid conditions this week. Map from NOAA
MORE HAWAI`I PUBLIC HIGH SCHOOL graduates in the Class of 2015 hit college-ready benchmarks in all four areas of the ACT college entrance exam — English, Math, Reading and Science — than in the year before.
Deputy Superintendent Stephen Schatz
Photo from Hawai`i DOE
      The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2015 report released by ACT notes a two percentage point overall improvement in college readiness across all subjects for Hawai`i’s Class of 2015, which included 11,957 Hawai`i high school public and private students — a record, with an estimated 93 percent of the state’s graduating class taking the ACT exam.
      Public school graduates saw a one percentage point increase in meeting all four college-ready benchmarks. Hawai`i’s public school system tests all of its juniors in ACT. Per subject, public school students improved in all areas: plus three percentage points in English and Reading, plus one percentage point in Math and plus two percentage points in Science. Each percentage point represents 103 seniors.
      “The improvements affirm our focus on supporting all students for success after high school,” Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi said. “A sustained focus on college and career readiness is showing results for our students. We’re very pleased to see steady progress.”
      The composite score (the average score for all four exams) for Hawai`i public school graduates in 2015 showed a modest increase to 17.5 from 17.3. It’s lower than the national composite score of 21.0, but the national rate remained flat from 2014 to 2015, while Hawai`i showed growth.
      “Affording all Hawai`i’s public high school students the opportunity to take the ACT provides useful information for charting individual college plans,” Deputy Superintendent Stephen Schatz said. “We are always looking at ways to improve how we teach our students. In taking a national exam of this magnitude, we can measure college preparedness and improvements to our college and career programs in our schools.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

TROPICAL STORM JIMENA IS PASSING far north of Hawai`i, but forecasters say its swirling winds will pull tropical moisture into the state from the south, making for more hot and humid weather through the week. At 11 a.m., Jimena was 545 north-northeast of South Point.
      “After it gets west or northwest of us is when the potential for heavy rainfall will increase,” National Weather Service meteorologist Tom Burchard told Craig Gima, of Honolulu Star-Advertiser. “There’s a bit of a tail of convergence that will extend from Jimena to the southeast with lots of moisture.”
      Unusually warm ocean temperatures surrounding Hawai`i will cause hot and humid weather through the end of October, Burchard said.
      See staradvertiser.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Sen./Dr. Josh Green
FAST SERVICE IS THE CRITERIA doctors should uses when choosing a company to transport patients from Hawai`i Island to O`ahu for emergency care, Ka`u’s state Sen. and Dr. Josh Green said. “I never favor one over the other based on costs,” he said in an Associated Press story in Hawai`i Tribune-Herald. “I have to make sure the patient doesn’t have a tragic outcome.”
      The high cost of emergency air transport from islands with limited health care services to O`ahu is the focus of the story. Two companies provide air transport on Hawai`i Island. According to the story, the price on AMR Air Hawai`i would be about $20,000, with a base rate of $14,000 per flight and $25 per mile. The story reported that a Hawai`i Life Flight bill from Hilo to O`ahu in December 2013 came to almost $71,000. Its base rate was about $16,000, and mileage, about $54,000.
      Hawai`i Life Flight’s rates skyrocketed after merging with AirMed Hawai`i in 2010, AMR’s general manager Speedy Bailey said.
      A spokesperson at the Association of Air Medical Services, based in Virginia, said high rates make up for low reimbursement rates from most patients.
      See hawaiitribune-herald.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

NEXTERA ENERGY AND HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC CO. have spent millions on consultants, advisors and other third parties working on the companies’ merger, Duane Shimogawa, of Pacific Business News, reported. So far, the total is more than $21 million.
      Amounts spent include $8.1 million to Citibank; $6.65 million to law firm Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, of New York; $1.1 million to communications firm Joele Frank, of New York; $1 million to financial services firm Blackstone Holdings, of New York; $832,000 to law firm Morihara Lau & Fong, of Honolulu; $565,000 to public relations and political consulting firm SKDKnickerbocker, of New York and Washington, D.C.; $513,000 to Concentric Energy Advisors, of Boston; $405,000 to law firm Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel, of Honolulu; $230,000 to public relations firm Bennet Group Strategic Communications, of Honolulu; and $149,000 to auditors Ernst & Young.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Friends of the Ka`u Libraries invite members and prospective members
to their membership meeting Thursday.
FRIENDS OF THE KA`U LIBRARIES’ annual membership meeting will be held this Thursday at 6 p.m. at Pahala Plantation House. Light refreshments will be served.
      Friends of the Ka`u Libraries is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose purpose is to support Pahala Public & School Library and Na`alehu Public Library to help them improve their services and resources.
      “We participate in community events, plan fundraisers for the libraries and assist the libraries with their special educational programs,” President Ann Fontes said. “You are invited to join us and learn more about us. For former members, we are looking forward to your renewals. We hope to recruit new members as well.” 
      Annual membership fees are $5 for adults, $2 for seniors 55 and over and $100 for life members.
      “We hope to see you at this at meeting,” Fontes said. “Invite potential members to come, too.”
      For additional information, call or Fontes at 987-7448 Doris Davis at 928-0919.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

ENTERTAINMENT FOR KA`U COFFEE TRAIL RUN, on Saturday, Sept. 19, has been announced. Taiko Drummers will send off the 5K, 10K and half marathon racers after Kumu Hula Debbie Ryder opens the morning at Ka`u Coffee Mill with a chant. An `ukulele group will perform. Hannah’s Makana `Ohana hula group and Kumu Sammy Fo and her dancers will perform. Emcee is Kamehameha High School volleyball Coach Guy Enriques. A silent auction includes many certificates for dinners, events and gifts, including items made of teak.
Sammi Fo
      Racers and walkers of all ages can sign up at www.race360.com/21357. All races begin and end at Ka`u Coffee Mill, 96-2694 Wood Valley Road. Race courses wind through coffee and macadamia orchards, eucalyptus and ohia tree forests and cattle-grazing pastures. The half marathon climbs to an elevation of 3,100 feet.
      This is the second Ka`u Coffee Trail Run. It is sponsored by `O Ka`u Kakou to raise money for its community endeavors.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

KA`U SCENIC BYWAY COMMITTEE meets Thursday at 5 p.m. at Na`alehu Methodist Church. The public is invited.

KA`U PLANTATION DAYS HOLDS ITS FIRST organizing meeting this Thursday, Sept. 10 at 6:30 p.m. at Pahala Community Center. The meeting scheduled for Aug. 24 had to be cancelled due to Hwy 11 being closed by flooding at Kawa. Everyone interested in helping the Oct. 17 event be successful is invited.
      For more information, call Darlyne Vierra at 640-8740.

OCEAN VIEW RANCHOS SOLAR PROJECT personnel meet with residents this Friday, Sept. 11 at 6 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center. SPI developer Ian Craig and project director Dominic Lopez will answer questions and give a presentation.
      Ka`u’s state Rep. Richard Creagan and County Council member Maile David are expected to attend.
      Organizers are instituting a three-minute time limit for each person who wishes to testify.
      For more information, call 939-7033.

CREATIVE NON-FICTION WRITING is the topic at a workshop this Saturday Sept. 12 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Volcano Art Center’s Niaulani Campus in Volcano Village. Nancee Pace Cline’s workshop helps participants tell their stories as histories of their hearts and hearths. She is the author of Queen Emma’s Church in Kealakekua: Crossroads of Culture.
      Fees are $50 for VAC members and $55 for non-members. Register at 967-8222.


HOME HEALTH AID IS NEEDED for a wheelchair-bound woman in Pahala. Call Cindy at Nurses Pro-Care Hawai`i Mondays through Fridays at 933-9933.

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