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No furloughs planned this year

Governor Ige says some “labor savings” must be made to reduce operating costs.

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Ige: No furloughs necessary this year after all
Gov. David Ige said Wednesday that it won’t be necessary to impose twice-per-month furloughs on state workers on July 1. But he also said he still needs to achieve some “labor savings” to reduce operating costs and offset the sharp decline in state tax collections. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i lawmakers want their “gifts of aloha” back
Several bills this session attempt to shirk the state Ethics Commission’s new rules banning the gifts. Civil Beat.

State senators advance confirmation of acting labor director
Despite ongoing problems with the state’s unemployment system, Anne Perreira-Estaquio got a vote of confidence from members of the state Senate. Hawaii News Now.

Green leads Caldwell in campaign donations for next governor’s race
Lt. Gov. Josh Green’s campaign brought in a total of $385,047 in 2020, while former Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell received $217,394 in donations, according to new campaign finance reports.The two are likely competitors in the 2022 contest. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i Proud Boy Nick Ochs charged with criminal conspiracy
A new indictment unsealed Wednesday by the U.S. Justice Department accuses Ochs of several new crimes that carry hefty penalties, including conspiracy, destruction of government property and theft for his part in the attack at the U.S. Capitol. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now.

Annual police misconduct reports are released with officer names for the first time
Reports from all the counties have been submitted to the state Legislature. Lawmakers say the change will bring accountability. KHON2.

FCC awards $24M to Hawaiian Telecom for rural broadband deployment
The award from the Federal Communications Commission’s Rural Digital Opportunity Fund will help bring fiber broadband service to unserved and underserved areas in Hawai‘i. Maui Now.

With COVID precautions in place, influenza cases in Hawai‘i are near zero
The state has so far dodged what health experts feared could be a “twindemic” of COVID-19 cases combined with the flu. Instead, flu cases have virtually disappeared since last summer. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Building a Team Among Remote Workers
I manage a team of remotely based employees. We use a lot of Slack and email to get the job done, but I’m wondering if there are any creative ways to do team-building with a crew like this? Yes, start by stealing a page from Hawaii’s business culture… read more.
Police chief says HPD is still investigating COVID-19 overtime violations
So far, four police officers have been removed from duty and dozens of others are under investigation. Chief Susan Ballard told the Honolulu Police Commission yesterday that a public report would be issued when the investigation is complete. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

“Significant” disparity in use of force questioned by Honolulu Police Commission
Commissioners say they are concerned over the Honolulu Police Department’s treatment of Pacific Islanders, Native Hawaiians and Black people when it comes to use of force and even arrest rates. Civil Beat.

Judge sends former cop who flipped on the Kealohas to prison
Niall Silva was sentenced to nine months behind bars, while in a related case, a former Big Island firefighter who admitted to having an affair with Katherine Kealoha received a much more lenient sentence. Civil Beat. Hawaii News Now. KHON2. KITV4.

Teen suspect in a nationwide cell phone hacking scheme was arrested in ‘Āina Haina
A 16-year-old high school junior was arrested yesterday for a con called a SIM swap. He now faces three felony charges. Hawaii News Now.

Creating Dynamic Business Strategies

The pandemic has evolved how we do business, especially for small local businesses. Hear from our experts on choosing the best strategic options for your company on marketing, cash-flow planning, diversification vs. consolidation, and more… read more.

Council votes 5-4 to confirm new planning director
Zendo Kern was confirmed Wednesday as county planning director after Hāmākua Councilwoman Heather Kimball switched her vote and decided to support him. West Hawaii Today.

COVID-19 test surplus could help reopen Big Island high schools
Approximately 800,000 test kits, originally procured by the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency, were found in a state bunker. With their expiration dates fast approaching, Dr. Scott Miscovich has proposed twice-a-week testing at Hawai‘i Island’s nine public high schools. Big Island Now.

Council approves funding for Kalaniana‘ole improvement project
The bill allocates $10 million to improve a deteriorating 1-mile stretch of Kalaniana‘ole Ave. in Hilo, although Finance Director Deanna Sako clarified earlier that those funds will not increase the project’s $18.5 million price tag. Tribune-Herald.

Community opposition grows in Kohala over proposed development near Pololū Valley lookout
The proposal would improve access to the area’s popular hiking trail, but it could also open the door to residential development on the valley ridgeline. Hawai‘i Public Radio.

Nonprofit Improves Native Hawaiian Education

InPeace was founded in 1994, long enough ago to have seen lasting results from its early childhood program. They now have seen three graduating classes; in the first class, 100 percent graduated from high school, and they all went on to college..read more.
Maui County to receive $40M in federal funds for rent, utilities assistance 
Maui Mayor Mike Victorino announced on Tuesday that the county is set to receive the money in the next round of COVID-19 relief funding. The funds will assist local households that earn 80% or less of the area median income and are at risk of homelessness. KHON2.

Father, son recount frightening shark attack off Maui
Experts say the bite mark on their kayak is consistent with a white shark. Maui Now. KHON2.

Amendments made to Westside beach driving bill
The state Senate’s Committee on Land and Water removed Kekaha Beach Park-specific portions of a bill that would require permits to drive on the beach. Garden Island.

Wailua Golf Course is short $250K
Keeping rates low at the county-owned golf course comes at a high price. For this fiscal year, the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation estimates the golf fund will fall short by about $250,000. Garden Island.

Monk seals found dead in Kaua‘i likely drowned in fishing nets
Two endangered Hawaiian monk seals initially thought to have been shot or beaten last year likely drowned after getting trapped in fishing nets, officials said Wednesday. Civil Beat. Big Island Now. Kauai Now. Hawaii News Now. KHON2.

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