Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016

A guided Centennial Hike: Into the Volcano takes place Saturday. Photo from NPS
KA`U’S STATE LAWMAKERS are back to work on issues important to their constituents. The 2016 session of the 28th State Legislature began yesterday. Ka`u residents can follow its progress at capitol.hawaii.gov.
Sen. Josh Green
Sen. Russell Ruderman
      Sen. Josh Green currently serves as Majority Floor Leader and Majority Whip. He is a member of the Committees on Housing, Human Services, and Tourism & International Affairs.
      Call Green at 808-586-9385, or email sengreen@capitol.hawaii.gov.
      Sen. Russell Ruderman is on four committees: Commerce, Consumer Protection & Health; Economic Development, Environment & Technology; Human Services; and Water, Land & Agriculture. Call Ruderman at 808-586-6890, or email senruderman@capitol.hawaii.gov.
Rep. Richard Creagan
Rep. Richard Onishi
      Rep. Richard Creagan serves on Health, Consumer Protection & Commerce, Housing, Human Services and Judiciary Committees. Call Creagan at 808-586-9605, or email repcreagan@capitol.hawaii.gov.
      Rep. Richard Onishi participates on Agriculture; Economic Development & Business; Finance; Tourism; Veterans, Military & International Affairs; and Culture & the Arts Committees. Call Onishi at 808-586-6120, or email reponishi@capitol.hawaii.gov.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I COUNTY PLANNING DEPARTMENT has recently launched new communication tools for the General Plan, the blueprint that guides long-term development of Hawai`i Island. A revised website, a Facebook page and email updates are all designed to help people participate in the General Plan Comprehensive Review.
      The Hawai`i County General Plan is reviewed every ten years. The county’s existing General Plan was adopted in 2005, and a lot has happened on Hawai`i Island since then. Everything that has transpired, including population growth, natural disasters, technological advancements and sustainability efforts, is being considered in the plan. The Planning Director is responsible for leading the review process and recommending amendments to the plan.
      To receive regular updates about the progress of the county’s review of the General Plan, like the Facebook page and/or sign up for email updates.
      The Facebook page is facebook.com/cohgeneralplan, and the eNews sign-up is cohplanningdept.com/general-plan/connect/. The eNews is not a discussion forum, and traffic will be light. Participants may unsubscribe at any time.
      “We anticipate sharing important updates soon, so hurry and sign up!” the Planning Department suggested.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Sen. Gil Kahele Photo by Julia Neal
STATE SEN. GIL KAHELE, who represented Ka`u before redistricting, missed yesterday’s opening of the state Legislature. Kahele checked into Queen’s Medical Center on Monday to address medical issues and have tests run.
      His son, Kai Kahele, told Kirsten Johnson, of Hawai`i Tribune-Herald, “If he had his way, he’d be back tomorrow. We’re hoping he’ll be back by next week, but it’s too early to tell.
      “He wanted to be there, trust me. Stubborn is putting it mildly. But we’ve got to help him take care of himself so he can return to work at his full capacity.”
      Kai Kahele told Johnson the senator appreciates Big Island residents’ prayers and support.
      Originally from Miloli`i, Kahele has worked for improved housing, coastal and near-shore preservation and native Hawaiian education.
      See hawaiitribune-herald.com.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I ISLAND POLICE ARE WARNING the public about scams involving Award Claim Notification letters being sent to Hawai`i residents.
      The letters come with claim numbers and authentic-looking checks paid to the order of the recipient in amounts of thousands of dollars. The letters include a phone number with instructions to call a claims agent in order to claim the total prize winnings, usually totaling more than $10,000.
      Police advise anyone receiving these letters to be cautious, as acting on the instructions may result in the loss of significant amounts of money.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Sen. Mazie Hirono
U.S. SEN. MAZIE HIRONO YESTERDAY voted against H.R. 4038, legislation that would require the Director of National Intelligence, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Secretary of Homeland Security to individually review and approve admission of any refugee from Syria or Iraq. The bill, which needed a 60-vote threshold to move forward, failed 55-43.
      “Keeping Americans safe should always be our first priority. However, this legislation does nothing to improve national security,” Hirono said. “Instead, it uses smoke and mirrors to effectively ban refugees, in many cases families and children, fleeing a deadly civil war. Instead of spending time on political stunts like this one, let’s come together to discuss solutions that will actually improve our nation’s security. For example, let’s close the legal loophole that allows people on terror watch lists to purchase guns and explosives. Or debate ways to increase resources for federal, state and local anti-terror collaboration. Or enhance overseas airport screening procedures and resources. In short, our approach to national security should live up to our values. We should focus on measures that make our communities more secure, not less welcoming to those who may be a different religion or from a particular region – especially if they are fleeing violence in search of peace and a better life.”
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard surfed with Wounded Warriors yesterday.
Photo from Office of Rep. Gabbard
U.S. REP. TULSI GABBARD, A VETERAN and a surfer, yesterday morning volunteered with the Hawai`i nonprofit organization AccesSurf and participated in their Wounded Warrior program. She assisted military personnel with disabilities to have a fun-filled day in the ocean, using specialized surfboards, longboards and flotation devices.
      “The service members who came out today were incredible and inspiring,” Gabbard said. “They have sacrificed so much in the service of our country and came home with wounds seen and unseen. Their determination and perseverance was evident today as we spent time in the ocean, having fun and appreciating its peaceful, healing, and rejuvenating qualities. I'd like to thank the AccesSurf team for everything they do to serve our troops and people with disabilities.”
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

IN SPORTS, KA`U HIGH TROJANS boys basketball teams hosted Hilo yesterday.
      Junior Varsity scored more points than their opponents in the fourth quarter but lost with a final score of 28-48. Zachary Kai was high-scorer with 14 points.
      Varsity got off to a low-scoring start with eight points in the first quarter but rebounded. They scored more points than Hilo in the third quarter, but also lost 44-71. As high-scorer, Jacob Flores contributed 11 points, one-quarter of the total.
      The teams travel to Hilo Civic tomorrow to play St. Joseph. The JV game begins at 6:30 p.m., and Varsity follows.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

LEGAL AID IS AVAILABLE tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center. Call 800-499-4302 for more information.

KEIKI WILL ONCE AGAIN CAST their lines at Punalu`u Beach Park on Saturday. Check-in for `O Ka`u Kakou's eighth annual Keiki Fishing Tournament begins at 8 a.m. Fishing takes place from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., followed by free lunch and shaved ice. Every participant takes home a prize, catch or no catch.
      For more information, call Wayne Kawachi at 937-4773 or Guy Enriques at 217-2253.

`Ohi`a lehua plays a vital role in native Hawaiian forests.
Photo from NPS
HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK offers guided hikes Saturday. At the Kahuku Unit from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., participants learn about the vital role of `ohi`a lehua in native Hawaiian forests, the many forms of the `ohi`a tree and the lehua flower. Visitors will be able to identify the many differences of the most prominent native tree in Kahuku during this program, which is an easy, one-mile (or less) walk. Enter the Kahuku Unit on the mauka side of Hwy 11 near mile marker 70.5, and meet near the parking area. Sturdy footwear, water, raingear, sun protection and a snack are recommended.
      Centennial Hike Into the Volcano takes place at the park's Kilauea summit area from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Park Ranger Dean Gallagher describes explosive evidence of Kilauea volcano’s not-so-distant past on this moderately difficult 2.7-mile roundtrip hike to the floor of Kilauea Caldera. Meet at Kilauea Visitor Center. Free; park entrance fees apply.

ALASKA DAYS IN HAWAI`I PICNIC is coming up on Saturday, Feb. 20 from noon to 5 p.m. at Honu`apo and Whittington Beach Park. The potluck is sponsored by families who live in both Ka`u and Alaska. Salmon and other Alaska foods are encouraged. Bring instrument to join the entertainment.
      For more information, call Tim Childs at 907-388-8546.


See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_January2016.pdf.
See kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.swf
and kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.pdf.

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