(AP). Hawaii lawmakers are not advancing a proposal that would have allowed Hawaii’s four counties to spend hotel tax money on efforts to eradicate coqui frogs. The House of Representatives sent the bill back to committee yesterday, effectively killing it due to internal legilative deadlines. The coqui frog is beloved in its native Puerto Rico, but Maui and Hawaii Island residents have complained abouts its shrieking calls.
Starting Monday, independent tour operators will not be allowed inside Hilo Harbor unless they have pre-arranged passengers from cruise ships docked at the pier. Michael PHillips, a driver for Fun Tours Hawaii, tells the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that move threatens his livelihood. Interim harbormaster Elton Suganuma says the ban on independents staging within the harbor followed several disruptive incidents that have occurred since the retirement of longtime Hilo harbormaster Ian Birnie in December.
The Hawaii County Council has advanced a non-binding proposal to provide free gravel, cinder, and other materials so residents can fix their rural roads. Hamakua Councilman Dominic Yagong tells the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that forming public-private partnerships is the best way to maintain the Big Island’s 122.6 miles of “roads in limbo”. Yagong says “a lot of these roads will not get attention unless we do something a little different.”
Hawaii County is still wrestling with a proposed 5-year Integrated Resources and Solid Waste Management Plan. Environmental Management Committee chairman Kelly Greenwell tells the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that the document will be thoroughly reviewed before it’s brought to the full council for approval. Kohala Councilman Pete Hoffman praised the initial work on the plan but said the plan won’t go far unless there is the political will to push it forward.
Rescue personnel are resuming their search this morning for 24-year old Ryan Ritzel of Soquel, California, who disappeared while he was swimming at Boiling Pots in Hilo. Fire Department personnel searched the Wailuku River from the shoreline using one of the rescue helicopters.
(AP). Two local bidders and a Texas businessman have submitted offers to buy the “Honolulu Star-Bulletin”. State Senator Sam Slom says he and Malia Zimmerman also put in a bid. A bid came from Big Island entrepreneur Frederick Harris. Publisher Dennis Francis says qualified bidders will be provided additional financial informaiton to possibly amend their bids by April 19th.
Community note: Young Life will hold a Fundraiser this Saturday to help send children to the Wood Leaf Camp in California. Young Life will be selling Lau Lau for the camping trip. Delivery is available in Waimea. If you want to help, call Lezlie at 854-9775.
Community note: Hawaii Community College presents its 22nd Annual Earth Fair on Friday, April 16th, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., on the upper campus Library Lanai, the Campus Center, and other venues. The public should come at noon after the school visits. For details, call Larissa at 974-7710.
The Lyman Museum invites you to experience an artistic tradition unique to Hawaii as it proudly presnets an exhibition of featherwork and demonstrations by Lei Hulu of Hilo from May 1st through May 15th. For details, call Linda at 935-5021.