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Big Island of Hawaii News, 12 July 2012 through 13 July 2012

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“Big Island of Hawaii News” is covering these Hawaii Island stories through Friday, 13 July 2012:

1.  Mayor signs aerial hunting ban.

2.  Tour company criticized for death of New York state boy.

3.  Bon Appetite on Mars.

4.  Board of Ethics lacks quorum to hear complaints about two Hawaii County Councilmen.

5.  Ocean view man charged with attempted murder.

Those are the headlines.  Here are the details with sources cited:

1.  AERIAL HUNTING BAN APPROVED

(Hawaii Tribune-Herald).  It was mainly symbolic, but the mayor signed it anyway.  On Wednesday, Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi signed into law a measure that prohibits “any person to engage in the eradication of any animal for any reason while being transported by helicotper, airplane, or any similar means.”  According to reporter Peter Sur, the bill was aimed at the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, which uses the shooting of feral goats and sheep by helicopter on state lands as a form of animal control.  In June, County Council members unanimously approved the bill, calling DLNR’s efforts as “barbaric and wasteful.”   DLNR Chairman William Aila said his department conducts aerial shooting of sheep and goats under a stipulated federal court order, adding the “county has no authority to override the federal court order,which is based on federal law, to ban or interfer with the state of Hawaii in performing those duties.  The department will continue to execise its duties to protect threatened and endangered species, watersheds, and natural resources as needed to address national, state, and county interests.”  Hawaii County maintains it reserves the right to pass the ban, regardless of whether it can be enforced, on the principle of home rule.

2.  TOUR COMPANY CRITICIZED FOR DEATH OF A NEW YORK STATE BOY

(Stephens Media).  On Wednesday, Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairman William Aila told reporter Chelsea Jensen that a local tour company that led youth to Kealakekua Bay’s Kaawaloa shoreline did not have a permit to be in the area where large waves swept a 15-year-old New York state boy into the ocean last week.  Tyler Madoff is still missing.  Aila said that neither Hawaii Pack and Paddle nor any other commercial kayak or tour group holds permits to be in the Kaawaloa lighthouse area.  Only the public is allowed access in the area.  Aila said “the exhibits (in the permit application) tell where they can access and where they can’t…it’s straightforward.”  Aila noted that he was limited on the information he could release on the disappearance of Tyler Madoff because the investigation into the incident remains ongoing.

3.  FOOD FOR MARS

(Hawaii Tribune-Herald).  Hawaii Island and some of its familiar cuisine may pave the way to Mars in the future.  Six men and women, selected from a field of 700 applicants, will help answer what kinds of food will be taken to the Red Planet when they live in a confined module upon a Hawaii Island lava field next year.  The effort is part of HI-SEAS, or Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation, a joint NASA study between the University of Hawaii and Cornell University that will simulate a mission to Mars.  According to reporter Colin Stewart, the mission’s core will focus on how to best feed astronauts taasty and nutritious meals during long periods in space.  As Stewart states, “NASA’s come to Hawaii looking for some zero-gravity grinds.” During the project’s life span, the crew will live and work inside a habitat consisting of a 30-foot geodesic dome.  Kim Binstead, a UH associate professor of information and computer sciences says the dome is being built in Colorado and will eventually be located on a lava field somewhere on the Mauna Loa side of the Saddle Road.

4.  LACK OF QUORUM STYMIES THOSE TESTIFYING BEFORE THE BOARD OF ETHICS

(Hawaii Tribune-Herald).  Wednesday’s meeting of the Hawaii County Ethics Board failed to produce any resolution to a complaint about council members missing their meetings.  In June, Keaukaha resident Terri Napeahi filed a complaint with the board because council members Donald Ikeda and Dennis Onishi were often missing from council meetings.  Napeahi, the vice president of the Pele Defense Fund, which opposes the development of geothermal energy resources, cited attendance figures compiled by County Council Chairman Dominic Yagong that show Onishi missed about 30 percent fo the 1,557 votes taken between 06 December 2010 and 18 April 2012, Ikeda missed about 23 percent of the votes during the same time period.  Resolution of the attendance issue was delayed because only three of the five Ethics Board members attended the meeting, and two of them declared conflicts of interest.  Without a voting quorum, there weren’t enough members to discuss Napeahi’s complaint.  Napeahi told reporter Hunter Bishop that “I’m really discouraged…who can I complain to at the next level?  We’re here because the environment is important to our lives?”  Napeahi urged the board to “come up with a process…change the structure.”

5.  ATTEMPTED MURDER CHARGES

(Hawaii Tribune-Herald/Hawaii Police Department).  Hawaii police have charged a 61-year-old Ocean View man with attempted murder in connection with a shooting incident Sunday afternoon at his home.  On Tuesday, police charged John O’Leary with attempted murder, second-degree assault, and eight firearms charges.  His bail was set at $68,000.  O’Leary had been arrested for the shooting of a 66-year-old Ocean View man, a longtime acquaintance.  Police have not given a motive for the shooting, but they say one of the bullets from the .22 caliber revolver hit the victim in his right upper thigh.  A struggle ensued, and the victim was able to escape with the gun to his home, where he called 911.

HAWAII ISLAND FORECAST THROUGH FRIDAY,  13 July 2012:

Hilo and vicinity–Partly cloudy with a few showers.  Some rain at night.

Kailua-Kona and vicinity–Partly sunny with a few early morning and late evening showers.

Highs near 81.  Lows near 68.  Sunrise Friday–5:50 a.m.  Sunset Friday–7:03 p.m.  Total hours of daylight Friday–13 hours, 13 minutes, and 07 seconds.  Winds shifting to the east northeast, 7-14 mph, by Friday.

HAWAII ISLAND TIDES FOR FRIDAY, 13 July 2012:

Hilo High Tide–12:37 p.m./10:47 p.m.  Hilo Low Tide–4:46 a.m./7:24 p.m.

Kailua-Kona High Tide–1:15 p.m./11:25 p.m.  Kailua-Kona Low Tide–5:23 a.m./8:01 p.m.

HAWAII ISLAND SURF FORECAST THROUGH FRIDAY,  13 July 2012:

A High Surf Advisory remains in effect for east-facing shores.

Hapuna Beach breaks–flat.  Kona and Banyans–flat to 1 foot.  Ka’u and Pohoiki–3 to 4 feet.  Hamakua–3 to 4 feet.  Hilo and Honolii–2 to 3 feet.

For a complete summary of state news, visit the right hand sidebar under “Hawaii News Now.”

A readers’ poll can also be found in the right hand sidebar.

OTHER HAWAII NEWS BLOGS WORTH READING:

Big Island Now, Hawaii 24/7, and Big Island Video News.

For the latest in community events, sports updates, and entertainment news, visit kbigfm.com, nativefm.com, kaparadio.com, and espnhawaii.com.

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Have an excellent day and thanks for joining us!

Russ Roberts, administrator, PRG HAWAII NEWS WITH RUSS ROBERTS

Laupahoehoe, Hawaii–along the beautiful Hamakua Coast.

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