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Big Island News, 30 July 2009


New principals will be running several Hawaii Island schools in the coming academic year. According to the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald”, Keaau Middle School Principal Jamil Ahmadia will retire on July 31st and will be replaced by Mountain View Vice Principal Ken Watanabe. Patti Andrade-Spencer will assume the top position at Hilo Intermediate. Ray Mizuba will take over operations at Kaumana Elementary School after serving as principal of the Hilo Community School for Adults.

An analysis of county council voting records by the Stevens Media Group reveals some interesting statistics. The media report shows that Hamakua Councilman Dominic Yagong missed 27.9 percent of 340 votes during the 16 council meetings that have been held since 2008. Yagong said his job as Food Pantry district manager for Maui and the Big Island has kept him on the road. Meanwhile, Hilo Councilman Guy Enriques, who only missed 3.2 percent of council votes will be unavailable for 43 days as he works as a coach at a volleyball camp in Washington State.

A preliminary study completed by the U.S. Army earlier this month finds no threat to the public from depleted uranium rounds at the Pohakuloa Training Area. Sierra Club member Cory Harden remains skeptical, tellsing “West Hawaii Today” that she’d like to see the military experts in a forum with scientists who may disput the study’s findings. Harden says the Army is not prepared to support its claims in a public forum.

The Board of Directors of the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority has decided not to close the facility early on weekdays and fully on weekends. NELHA operations manager Jan War tells “West Hawaii Today” that there is no way the facility would stop the 30-year tradition of public beach access. DBEDT Director Ted Liu says the full budget has been restored, including security arrangements for public access.

A council bill authored by Mayor Billy Kenoi’s administration would require moped owners to produce a valid safety inspection certificate when they register their machines. Vehicle and Registration Division manager Lee Lord tells the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” the bill is aimed at distinguishing motorcycles disguised as mopeds.