Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015

Visitors admire the newly restored Herb Kane mural, A Pantheon of Volcano Spirits, in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park's Jaggar Museum. See story below. NPS Photo by Stephen Geiger
REGENERATIVE AND DIVERSE AGRICULTURE in Hawai`i received the attention of all four U.S. legislators from Hawai`i when Hawai`i Farmers Union United recently went to Washington, D.C. The organization’s president Vince Mina reported that elected officials are excited about the “quality and quantity of nutrient rich food being available” for the Hawai`i community.
Vince Mina and his daughter Kahaulani
Photo by Julia Neal
      While in D.C., Mina chaired the National Regenerative Agriculture Local Food Committee meeting, hosting USDA and National Resources Conservation Services senior advisors to the director of agriculture. He also met with Elanor Starmer, USDA’s “Know Your Food, Know Your Farmer” initiative coordinator. Bianca Moebius Clune, of the newly formed Soil Health Division of NRCS, “gave inspired and enlightening reports on this growing trend in agriculture that has captured the imagination of millennials who are choosing agriculture as a career choice while also supporting us elder agriculturists with honing our skills in advocating for what will serve the best and highest interest of our farms and community,” Mina reported.
      Mina said, “Hawai`i is taking the lead in raising the awareness on a national level for future support of programs on a local level in alignment to our mission and goals.”
      HFUU presents its first annual Natural Farming Syposium Oct. 1 – 3 at UH-Manoa’s Komohana Research & Extension Center in Hilo.
      Email easthawaii@hfuuhi.org to register.
      For more on the local chapter of Hawai`i Farmers Union United, call Pres. Greg Smith, of Earth Matters Farm, at 939-7510. See the statewide website at http://hfuuhi.org.
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A COLORFUL WALL MURAL of Hawaiian deities painted by Herb Kawainui Kane has been restored at Jaggar Museum in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.
      Thanks to an $8,000 grant by Tourism Cares, a $1,600 donation and 32 hours of service by the nonprofit Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, the artwork titled A Pantheon of Volcano Spirits is once again bright and colorful. The mural depicts volcano goddess Pelehonuamea, her brother and shark god Kamohoali`i, rival demigod Kamapua`a and other Hawaiian deities affiliated with volcanoes.
      The mural captivates millions of park visitors who visit Jaggar Museum.
      The mission of Tourism Cares is to preserve and enhance the travel experience for future generations. FHVNP’s mission is to support the park in the protection, preservation and interpretation of the natural and cultural resources for the enjoyment of current and future generations.
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A grant will provide solar power and a potable water system
for Native Hawaiian residents of Miloli`i.
Photo by Kaiali`i Kahele
NATIVE HAWAIIAN RESIDENTS of Miloli`i will soon have solar power for electricity, refrigeration and cooking and a solar distillation kit to procure safe drinking water. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack last week awarded one of nine High Energy Cost grants to help reduce energy costs for residents in remote rural areas where the cost of producing electricity is extremely high. 
      The nonprofit Heritage Ranch, Inc. received $896,450 to provide equipment and technical assistance for a solar energy network that will serve 255 native Hawaiians in Miloli`i. The community has no utility-provided electricity and no potable water. Residents pay high rates to have fuel and water delivered.
      “The High Energy Cost Grant Program is one more approach USDA is taking to deliver cleaner, more cost-effective energy sources across the country,” Vilsack said. “Energy conservation programs like this help improve the environment by reducing carbon emissions and the use of fossil fuels. In addition, when businesses and families spend less on fuel and electricity, they have more money to invest in local businesses. The grants we are announcing today will help create jobs and benefit entire rural communities.”
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Ope`ape`a migrated from North America to Hawai`i.
Photo from Forest and Kim Starr
BATS MIGRATED TO HAWAI`I from North America at least twice in the last 10,000 years. While isolated in the archipelago, the flying mammal became the Hawaiian hoary bat, the ope`ape`a. These are among the findings that researchers Kristina Montoya-Aiona and Corinna Pinzari are presenting on the endangered species and newly anointed official land mammal for the state. 
      The presentation takes place at 7 p.m. at Lyman Museum in Hilo next Monday.
      According to the researchers, recent studies in bat genetics are opening the doors to better understand the Hawaiian bat.
      Montoya-Aiona will introduce the basics of bat biology, ecology and behavior across the islands. Pinzari will share the latest findings. Both work with the Hawai`i Cooperative Studies Unit/USGS Kilauea Field Station.
      Lyman Museum is at 276 Haili St. and open 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday - Saturday. For information, call 935-5021 or see www.lymanmuseum.org.
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THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS has awarded $2,118,174 in two grants under the Supportive Services for Veteran Families program to help curb veterans’ homelessness in Hawai`i. 
      “Today, far too many veterans are living on the streets while struggling to find affordable housing,” Sen. Brian Schatz said. “Our commitment to those brave men and women in uniform does not end when they separate from the military. We have to continue to fight on their behalf so that when they come home, they come home to a roof over their heads. These funds will help those homeless veterans find a path toward stable housing.”
       Sen. Mazie Hirono said, “As we address the serious issue of homelessness, it is imperative that we keep our commitment to helping our service members and families in need. Partnerships between the federal government and nonprofit organizations, including the SSVF grant program, are critical to addressing the challenges that veterans and their families face in finding a stable home. SSVF is one of our greatest tools in the effort to end veteran homelessness.”
       The grants are awarded under the SSVF program, which supports outreach, case management and other flexible assistance to prevent Veteran homelessness or rapidly re-house Veterans who become homeless. The grants awarded to Hawai`i were a part of a $300 million renewal of crucial services throughout the country.
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TODAY IS NATIONAL VOTER Registration Day. Ka`u residents can register online at https://olvr.hawaii.gov, by mailing a completed Wikiwiki Voter Registration to the County Clerk’s office or in person at the County Clerk’s office. 
      “Voter participation in Hawai`i has been declining since 1959, and in the last few elections, our voter participation rates have been among the lowest in the country, with just half of registered voters actually turning out to vote,” U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said. “Our nation is founded on the principles of an active, engaged democracy, and we are at our best when the diverse voices of our nation are heard through our citizens exercising their right to vote.

“As President Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, ‘Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves, and the only way they could do this is by not voting.’”
       For more information on registering and voting in Hawai`i, see www.hawaii.gov/elections or call the Voter Hotline at 1-800-442-VOTE (8683).
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WE THE POWERFUL WORKSHOPS are coming to Ka`u next month. On Oct. 23 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center and from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Pahala Community Center, Keanu Young, assistant coordinator of Hawai`i State Legislature’s Public Access Room, explains how to influence state laws. PAR is the Legislature’s non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau. 
      Topics covered include tips and techniques on effective lobbying, testimony and communicating with legislators. Young explains the legislative process, deadlines and power dynamics. He also describes easy to use tools available on the Legislature’s website, capitol.hawaii.gov.
      For more information and to register (helpful but not required) call 974-4000, ext. 7-0478 or email par@capitol.hawaii.gov.
      Read comments, add your own, and like The Ka`u Calendar News Briefs on Facebook.

`Ohe kapala demostrations take place tomorrow.
Photo from NPS
RANGERS SHARE THE TRADITIONAL ART of `ohe kapala, bamboo stamping, tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Kilauea Visitor Center’s lanai in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free; park entrance fees apply. 
      For more information, call 985-6011.

UHANE POHAKU NA MOKU O HAWAI`I will hold a community meeting on its vision for its work in Ka`u. The meeting is tomorrow at 5 p.m. at Pahala Plantation House.
      The Ka`u leaders of the nonprofit organization are Debbie and Kawehi Ryder, of Pahala. Among the organization’s activities in Ka`u are an annual cultural festival, Ho`okupu Hula No Ka`u, which attracts halau and Hawaiian musicians from around the state and Japan. This year it will be on Friday, Oct. 2 and Saturday, Oct. 3, with a Mark Yamanaka performance and fundraiser Thursday, Oct. 1 to start off the festival.
      Uhane also works with at-risk youth around the state, including growing and processing mamaki tea from Wood Valley.
      For more information, call 315-7032.

KA`U COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PLAN Steering Committee meeting will be held this Thursday, Sept. 24 at 5:30 p.m. at Pahala Community Center. Topics will be shoreline setback policy, the land use policy map and “easy fixes” to the Draft CDP. The meeting is open to the community, and public testimony is welcome.
      Background information prepared to inform and guide the meeting is available at http://www.hawaiicountycdp.info/kau-cdp/steering-committee/steering-commitee-meetings/september-22-2015-steering-committee-meeting-1.
      A meeting originally scheduled for today at Na`alehu Community Center to make final recommendations for CDP revisions and adoption has been moved to Tuesday, Oct. 27.


See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_September2015.pdf

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

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