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Hawaii Island News, 19-20 September 2009


(AP).  No inmates are left at the Kulani Correctional Facility on the Big Island.  They’ve all been transferred to facilities on Oahu after the state decided to close the Big Island’s only prison to save money.

(AP).  Governor Linda Lingle and Hawaii teachers say they’ve reache an agreement on a new contract.  But members of the Hawaii State Teachers Association must still vote on the pact Tuesday.  The contract is the first to be reached among the four separate negotiations taking place between the state and unions that represent state employees.

A Hilo Grand Jury has indicted Anthony Serges Poulin for assaulting, raping, and drowning his girlfriend’s 5-year old daughter.  Poulin’s case will be moved to Hilo Circuit Court, where he faces charges of second-degree murder, first-degree sexual assault, and abuse of a family member.  Deputy Prosecutor Kanani Laubach told the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that court appointed defense attorney Stanton Oshiro most likely will ask for a dismissal of the indictment because a mental exam is pending.

A Kona Grand Jury has indicted a Kailua-Kona man on child pornography and statutory rape charges.  According to the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald”,  a bench warrant has been issued for the arrest of 22-year old Justin Pasamonte, with bail set for $58,000.  Police Department representative Chris Loos told the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that the alleged assualts occurred in Honokaa.

A contract to build the next section of the Saddle Road has been awarded to Road and Highway Builders of Sparks, Nevada.  The $32.8 million contract will cover a section of the Saddle Road from mile marker 11 to mile marker 19.   Richard Huenting, the president of Road and Highway Builders, told the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that the project will employ local subcontractors, suppliers, and trucking firms.

Hawaii Senator Daniel K. Inouye has announced the release of $6.9 million from the National Science Foundation for an infrared astronomical research project in Hawaii.  Infrared astronomy studies the night sky by scanning for heat rather than light  because many celestial objects are invisible, except for the heat they give off.  Inouye said the grant would ensure that the University of Hawaii stays on the cutting edge of astronomical science.  Senator Inouye also said the grant would generate high tech jobs for Hawaii.

The state Department of Transportation advises Big Island motorists of various construction activities along the Queen Kaahumanu Highway, beginning this Monday, 21 September, through Friday, 25 September, from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm.  Areas affected include single lane closures at the Henry and Malulani Street intersections for electrical work and multiple lance closures between Lako Street and Henry Street for resurfacing work.

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