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Hawaii Island News, 13 November 2009


A  Flash Flood Watch remain in effect through this afternoon.  Both lanes of the Hilo Bayfront Highway are closed because of high surf.  High Surf Advisory is in effect for all North facing shores.  A winter weather advisory remains in effect until 6 pm for all summit area.

Wolf Farms has won the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival’s Classic Cupping Competition.  The four-acre coffee farm in Honaunau topped 60 other coffee farms to claim the top prize yesterday.  Mark Wolf owns and operates Wolf Farms with his wife Denise.  He says he’s pleased to win after receiving an honorable mention last year.

The Kona Coffee Cultural Festival, Hawaii’s oldest food festival, wraps up today with the Kona Coffee Council Farm and Mill Tour.  Meet at Hale Halawai at 9 am.  Other events include the Makaeo Cultural Program at the Old Kona Airport Park and the Sugai Talent Nights at 6:30 pm in the Konawaena Elementary School cafeteria in Kealakekua.

(AP).  Hawaii’s budget woes will lead to the layoff of almost 650 state workers by the end of the year.  State Human Resources Department Director Marie Laderta said Thursday that 84 noncivil service worker will lose their jobs today.    She says an additional 386 employees will be laid off a week later.  A third batch of 181 will be laid off by the end of December.

The real estate crunch continues throughout the state.  The Associated Press reports that there were 925 foreclosure filings in Hawaii in October as distressed homeowners deal with layoffs, furloughs, and wage cuts.  On Hawaii Island, there was one foreclosure per 338 households, while Maui had one per 298 households.  Kauai say one filing per 328 households.

The Council of Neighbor Island Advisors for East Hawaii will meet on Thursday, November 19th, at 5:30 pm, in the Aupuni Center Conference Room.  Matthew Kaneshiro, Hawaii Correctional Industries administrator, will present to the Council and the public plans for expanding services to Hawaii Island.

(AP).  A Hawaii Tourism Authority committee has approved using an additional $1.2 million from the marketing opportunity fund.  The HTA says the money would be used for four programs to help stimulate short and long-term travel to Hawaii.  The largest expenditure would be $448,000 for the state to have a booth in the 2010 Shanghai Expo’s U.S. pavilion.