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Hawaii Island News, 13 February 2010


[polldaddy poll=2695121]Despite recent showers, much of Hawaii Island faces drought conditions.  Water haulers in the Puna District have been very bushy over the past few weeks as the deepening drought has pushed many on catchment systems to seek relief from commercial water hauling services.  According to the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald”, a 4,000 gallon load will cost about $130.  Water hauler William Julian says he and other water deliverers are hard pressed to keep up with demand.

The Hawaii County Charter Commission has advanced a proposal to cut  the 2 percent land fund to a minimum of 1 percent, but giving it the permanency of a charter amendment instead of the current county ordinance.  According to the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald”, the proposed amendment will get one more hearing before it goes to the County Council.  If council members approve the measure, the proposed amendment will be on the November ballot.

(AP).  A Big Island man who stood trial for murder has been convicted of the lesser offense of manslaughter.  Police and and prosecutors say Kevin Metcalfe was guarding his medical marijuana when he shot Larry Kuahuia with a shotgun last May 6th.  The jury decided the shooting was reckless rather than premeditated.

(AP).  The body of a Big Island surfer has been recovered at Anaehonomalu Bay.  Officials say witnesses told firefighters Thursday that the man disappeared after he fell while riding a large wave.  Fragments of the man’s standup paddleboard were recovered.  The man’s body was recovered about 100 yards from shore by a rescue swimmer after it was spotted by a fire.

(AP).  E-waste recycling centers on the Big Island have stopped taking old computers, TVs, microwave ovens, and printers.  Hawaii County’s agreement with a recycling contractor expired December 31st, and government officials are looking for money to fund a new contract extension.  The county spent $320,000 last year subsidizing residential e-waste recycling.

(AP).  Many of Governor Linda Lingle’s proposals have cleared their first hurdles during this year’s lawmaking process.  The State Legislature gave initial approval to bills that aim to create hotel construction jobs through tax credits, start a budget-balancing stabilization fund for use in future economic downturns, and make the school superintendent answerable to the governor.

The top administrator of the Department of Land and Natural Resources tells “West Hawaii Today” that the marine aquarium fishery is not unmanaged.  DLNR Chairwoman Laura Thielen says the state agency is monitoring what tropical fish collectors and dealers are reporting monthly.  It also wants to get a measure passed that would allow Division of Conservation and Resource Enforcement officers to inspect closed containers for prohibited fish.  The statement came in the wake of the discovery of 610 tropical fish dumped in a rubbish bin at the Honokahua Small Boat Harbor.

Notice to motorists:  Single lane closures will be in effect from February 16th through February 19th, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., along the Queen Kaahumanu Highway from Lako Street to Henry Street.  In Ninoole, one lane will be closed on the Kuwaikahi Bridge between Hokumahoe Road and Kihalani Homestead Road, February 16th through February 19th, 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m, for bridge maintenance.  In Ookala, one lane will be closed 24 hours a day through mid-March for construction of roadway approaches to the new Kealakaha Bridge replacement.  Temporary traffic signals will control traffic through this lane closure.