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Restrictions may return as COVID-19 cases rise

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Top Story:  State officials fear residents are too relaxed as coronavirus cases continue to spread.

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Today's Hawaii News - Hawaii Business Magazine
08.04.2020
RESTARTING HAWAIʻI
Construction Helps Drive the Local Economy in Tourism’s Absence
Construction is now the strongest major sector in Hawai‘i’s hobbled economy. For hundreds of small suppliers and contractors, business remains lively, despite the pandemic. Also dirving the local industry are big construction, architectural and engineering companies, and big local spenders like the U.S. Department of Defense, the state government and the City and County of Honolulu. Hawaii Business Magazine

Video: Experts in Real Estate Discuss Hawaiʻi’s Economic Recovery Part 1
Hawaii Business Magazine wanted the inside story on changes in the local real estate industry. So we invited six experts to a virtual discussion. Here is an edited and condensed highlight video of the recording of that discussion. Hawaii Business Magazine

TOP STORIES
State fears residents are too relaxed as COVID becomes ‘entrenched’ in community
State officials are mulling over reimposing restrictions and delaying the reopening of tourism as Hawaiʻi continues to see alarming spikes in new COVID-19 cases, triggering concerns that residents are letting down their guard at the wrong time. “It’s clear that many across the state have relaxed their commitment in fighting against this COVID-19 infection,” Gov. David Ige said Monday afternoon. An eye-opening 207 new cases were reported by the state Department of Health earlier in the day. Hawaii News Now. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Tribune-Herald. Civil Beat. Maui Now. KHON2.
Large weekend gatherings cause concern. KITV4.
Officials threaten to close more state parks if people continue large gatherings. Hawaii News Now.

Quarantine loopholes continue as more visitors, residents enter the state
Despite the state’s ongoing mandatory quarantine, there was a big jump in visitor numbers over the weekend. According to the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority, 1,701 visitors arrived in the state over the weekend. The group Hawaiʻi Quarantine Kapu Breakers said they are getting reports of people violating quarantine on an hourly basis, and they want to help state and county officials fix the loopholes. KHON2.

COVID-19 hospitalizations increasing across Oʻahu
After multiple days of COVID-19 numbers in the hundreds, major hospitals in Oʻahu like Queen’s Health Systems, Hawaii Pacific Health and Kaiser Permanente Hawaii all say they have seen a rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations over the past few weeks. KHON2.

Critics say state needs additional contact tracers
As Hawaiʻi’s COVID-19 counts surge frustrations are mounting that the state doesn’t have enough contact tracers to prevent officials from reverting to lockdowns to contain the spread. State Department of Health director Bruce Anderson said Monday that the state has about 105 active contact tracers, a number he said was sufficient and could increase if needed. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

State COVID-19 committee seeks info from DOH for public
On Monday members of the State House of Representatives COVID-19 team stated publicly that they want the Department of Health to release more information about where and how people are getting sick with the coronavirus in Hawai’i. The idea is if the public were to constantly hear where cases are and how they are spreading, they would likely change the way they approach daily situations. KITV4.

Gov. Ige questioned on pandemic restrictions
Representatives of various Hawaiʻi business associations on Monday had the chance to directly question Governor David Ige on some of the State’s COVID-19 policies. Big Island Video News.

30,000 isle workers may have opted out of job market in July
With COVID-19 cases surging and Hawaii’s economy struggling, as many as 30,000 workers could have taken themselves out of the state’s labor market last month. Carl Bonham, executive director of the UH Economic Research Organization, said it’s difficult to make an estimate. He said the numbers are certain to increase in the coming months as employees on the verge of retirement also pull the plug on full-time employment when faced with the possibility of furloughs and further shutdowns. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Hawaiian Airlines possible layoffs revealed
Employees could be laid off as early as October from Daniel k. Inouye, Hilo, Kahului, Kailua-Kona and Līhuʻe airports along with employees from the corporate headquarters in Honolulu. The layoffs may include 677 flight attendants, 198 customer service agents, about 177 ramp agents and 211 contact serviceman. KITV4.

Students create a youth-oriented voter guide
A hui of college and secondary school students known as Ho‘ohuli have created an online voter guide geared toward their generation and the mission embodied in their name, which means to turn, to change or to reform. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

HAWAII BUSINESS
Coconut Wireless 2.0: How New, Agile Networks of People Are Helping Hawai‘i
In the midst of chaos, an alternative form of organization is serving important needs. Networks are forming around common goals, interests and principles. Members of these networks are coming together to help people in need, kick-start the economy and pave the road to a sustainable future… read more.
OʻAHU
Civil Beat/Hawaii News Now polls
Blangiardi holds a double-digit lead in Honolulu mayor’s race. But Hanabusa and Amemiya are tied for second and will likely force a runoff in November. Civil Beat.
Steve Alm is well ahead of his five main competitors for Honolulu prosecutor. Civil Beat.

Andria Tupola, Calvin Say lead city council candidates in campaign spending
Two candidates for Honolulu City Council who have extensive political track records are the ones collecting and spending the most, according to financial reports filed with the state Campaign Spending Commission last week. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Sacred Hearts student positive for COVID-19
Sacred Hearts Academy revealed a student tested positive for COVID-19 on Aug. 2. KHON2.

Some worry there’s no contingency plan for COVID at Hawaiʻi’s public housing
An employee at Mayor Wright Public Housing has tested positive for COVID-19 and some are concerned about how the Hawaii Public Housing Authority is handling the situation. Hawaii News Now.

Ward Village condo sales still rising despite COVID-19
Honolulu’s biggest condominium tower producer is selling more new homes. Howard Hughes Corp. noted in a financial report Monday that sales continue to grow at its master-planned Ward Village community in Kakaʻako, where two towers are under construction and a third is projected to break ground early next year. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

SMALL BUSINESS TOOL KIT

How a Values-Driven Family Business Has Adapted to COVID-19

Uehara Family Cosmetic Dentistry was established more than 30 years ago by Germaine, Garret and Jill Uehara in Honolulu.  Their Hilo practice, Island Ohana Dental, is double the size and capacity of their Honolulu operation, and together, they employ four associate dentists and several hygienists… read more.

HAWAIʻI ISLAND
South Kohala court closes after employee tests positive for COVID-19
The courthouse, located in the Waimea Civic Center complex, will be closed on Tuesday, after the first confirmed case of a Judiciary employee statewide. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now.

Responsible tourism: County lays out five-year plan for visitors, residents
Hawaiʻi County last week released its five-year strategic tourism plan, a guiding document to help ensure responsible tourism that respects the Hawaiʻi Island’s communities and natural and cultural resources. Tribune-Herald.

Site of former homeless camp draws just one bid at auction
A lot in downtown Hilo that was the site of a troublesome homeless camp received only one extremely low bid at auction last month, but that sale will likely be blocked, a county official said. Tribune-Herald.

HAWAII BUSINESS
Yes, We’re Open: Tanaka Ramen & Izakaya

Since graduating from UH Mānoa in 2014, Tina Wang says, she has dreamed of bringing her favorite ramen to Hawaiʻi’s rich noodle scene. The dream first took a detour to the Mainland and then COVID-19 altered it’s realization, but Tanaka Ramen & Izakaya is making the best of it… read more.
MAUI COUNTY
Interview with the mayor
Maui Mayor Michael Victorino continued to express frustrations over large gatherings as the state continues to record new COVID-19 activity. His comments come on the heels of new rules that went into effect in Maui County on Friday that limit indoor and outdoor social gatherings to no more than 10 people, and prohibit the use of large structures that may attract gatherings, such as tents and pavilions at parks and beaches. Maui Now.

Lānaʻi sees boost in census response, greater participation needed in East Maui, Molokaʻi  After census materials delayed by the pandemic finally made it to Lānaʻi residents’ doors, response rates on the island shot up by more than 30 percentage points, according the county. Maui News.

KAUAʻI
Schools Superintendent Paul Zina gets busy with official duties
It’s been a month since Paul Zina started his official duties as the new Kaua‘i Complex Area Superintendent, and he has already given back to the community through various events and faced COVID-19 issues head-on when it came to reopening public schools on Kaua‘i. Garden Island.

Humane society, county negotiating details for fiscal year 2021
Kaua‘i Humane Society is currently operating on a short-term contract with the County of Kaua‘i that is extending the Fiscal Year 2020 services through August, and is providing more time for the two entities to negotiate their contract for the FY 2021. Garden Island.

JULY/AUGUST ISSUE
Dive into some of our latest features!
Stories on Restarting Hawaiʻi
Hawaiʻi’s Top 250 Companies 2020
How New, Agile Networks of People Are Helping Hawai‘i
The Pandemic is Not Gender Neutral
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Russ Roberts

https://hawaiinewsdigest.net

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