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Hawaii Business Magazine Newsletters


Top Story:  “Hawaii residents’ view of tourism improves slightly.”

Views expressed in this Hawaii State News summary are those of the reporters and correspondents.

Accessed on 10 February 2023, 0305 UTC.

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Today's Hawaii News
Hawai‘i residents’ view of tourism improves slightly
In the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism’s Fall 2022 Resident Sentiment Survey, released Wednesday, 57% of participating residents rated the question “Tourism has brought more benefits than problems” as at least 6 on a scale of 1 to 10 — up from 54% in Spring 2022. Star-Advertiser. Maui Now.  Hawaii News Now.

‘Pay to play’: Hawai‘i moves to expand the ban on contractor campaign donations
The Legislature is setting its sights on campaign donations from state and county contractors that have been the subject of public corruption cases in recent decades. Civil Beat. Maui News.

Lawmakers eye review of Hawai‘i’s ‘redundant’ process of setting minimum sentences
Hawai‘i is the only state with a two-step process for determining a prisoner’s sentence. But that could soon change.  Hawaii News Now.

Could 2023 be the year recreational marijuana is legalized in Hawaiʻi?
Several bills relating to the cultivation and sale of cannabis have passed their first readings and are awaiting committee hearings. Hawaii Public Radio.

Ahead of Super Bowl, effort to legalize online sports betting fails in state Legislature
A legislative effort to legalize online sports betting using online services like Fan Duel or Draft Kings didn’t pay off Wednesday morning and leaders said that was likely the first and last play for legalized gaming this year. Hawaii News Now.

2 state departments say they are working together on land transfers
The leadership for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources and Department of Agriculture announced that they are working together to move thousands of acres of pasture land between the departments — and suggested that they were against legislation that would mandate the transfer of those lands. Star-Advertiser. Big Island Video News.

Free school bus legislation rolls on
State Rep. Jeanné Kapela introduced House Bill 828 on Jan. 25, seeking free bus transportation for all students that qualify for free or reduced lunch through the National School Lunch Program. Her goal is for the proposal to go into effect on July 1. Garden Island.

Rate increase will bring in $8 million per year to feed Hawaiʻi’s keiki
The U.S. Department of Agriculture this week announced that Hawaiʻi’s reimbursement rates for school lunch and other federal child nutrition programs will be increased by 13%. Maui Now.

Hawai‘i lawmakers consider high taxes for e-cigs
Rep. Scot Matayoshi has been trying to fight e-cigarettes for four years. This year, Matayoshi and other lawmakers have a new approach: tax electronic smoking devices and e-liquid products at a rate of 70%. Civil Beat.

How 5 Hawai‘i Families Built Generational Wealth
Family businesses rarely last for three generations. Here’s how the Ai, Fukunaga, Watumull, Hata and Lau families did it… read more.
Views clash in Legislature over housing on Kaka‘ako peninsula
Two committees in Hawai‘i’s Legislature were inundated Wednesday by divergent views on a bid by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to largely reverse a 2006 state law prohibiting residential development in Kaka‘ako Makai. Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Hirono will lead subcommittee with oversight of Red Hill
The Hawai‘i senator has made defueling the WWII era tanks a priority ever since a 2021 leak sickened thousands on O‘ahu. Civil Beat.

Mayor Blangiardi on finding a new landfill site, improving permitting department
Mayor Rick Blangiardi said Wednesday that he’s looking at a few possible locations on military or agricultural grounds that would not impact Oʻahu’s water table. Hawaii Public Radio.

O‘ahu hotels have deep pockets and now more local food is on their shopping lists
Fresh research reinforces that the majority of tourists to Hawai‘i will pay a premium to experience local fare. That could make food produced here more affordable for residents. Civil Beat. Hawaii Public Radio.

Ex Punahou coach allegedly ‘a prolific and aggressive child predator’
Federal prosecutors said Wednesday Dwayne Yuen, 49,  a former Punahou School girls basketball coach Opens in a new tab should remain jailed until trial to protect the public because he is allegedly “a prolific and aggressive child predator.” Star-Advertiser. Hawaii News Now.

Man, 49, sentenced to 10 years for Waikīkī surfboard rack arson
A circuit judge sentenced a 49-year-old man Tuesday to 10 years in prison after he was convicted of setting fire to surfboard racks in Waikīkī in 2021. Star-Advertiser.

Photo: courtesy of Swinerton

Full-Service Grocery Store Waikiki Market Grand Opening

Situated in the Heart of Waikiki, and designed with the Waikiki community in mind, Waikiki Market by Food Pantry, Ltd. is a brand new two-story, 32,000-square-foot “Super-Supermarket” located on the first and second floor of the all-new Lilia Tower of Waikiki… read more.

Property owners, tenants voice concerns about proposal for downtown Hilo
The Downtown Hilo Business Improvement District is a long-gestating project that would help property owners finance infrastructure upgrades in the hopes of revitalizing the area. Tenants and owners acknowledged that the area is in need of improvements, but said the project will hurt more than it will help. Tribune-Herald.

County looks to lease semi-trucks for cross-island rubbish hauling
Resolution 47-23 authorizes the Department of Environmental Management to spend $25,800 per month, or nearly $1.5 million over the next five years, to lease six semi-trucks to transport rubbish from the East Hawai‘i Regional Sort Station to the West Hawaii Sanitary Landfill in Pu‘uanahulu. West Hawaii Today.

Academic adviser calls menstrual products law a success
Prior to the rollout of free menstrual products, school faculty were buying them out-of-pocket for students, according to Robin Valencia, complex academic adviser for the Hilo-Waiakea area. The law went into effect last July. Tribune-Herald.

Photo: Getty Images, Photo Illustration: Kelsey Ige
Why Hawai‘i’s Small Businesses Lose Out on Lucrative Federal Contracts

While mainland companies are awarded billions of dollars each year, most local ones don’t even apply. Here’s advice on how to more.
Former Maui official is sentenced to 10 years in bribery scheme
The former director of the Maui County Department of Environmental Management who took more than $2 million in bribes in exchange for steering at least 56 sole source contracts to a Honolulu wastewater company was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison Wednesday. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat.  Maui Now.  Hawaii News Now.  KITV4. KHON2.

Lawsuits against MPD claim gender discrimination, retaliation
Alleging gender discrimination and retaliation from the Maui Police Department chief and his former deputy, three female employees — two officers and one police department administrator — recently filed separate lawsuits in 2nd Circuit Court against the department. Maui News.

$195,000 awarded to Maui County for medical outreach for unsheltered homeless
The funding will be used to provide basic medical care to the unsheltered homeless, officials announced. Maui News.

New questions about mysterious Kaua‘i balloon
A Pentagon announcement Wednesday raises new questions about a mysterious balloon that appeared off Kaua‘i last year that prompted U.S. fighter jets to scramble in response and comes as media reports emerge of several other apparent spy balloons making their way through U.S. airspace — including Hawai‘i. Star-Advertiser.

Voting opens for Kaua‘i Food Access Plan targets
Over the course of eight community meetings, more than 200 Kaua‘i food producers, community leaders and concerned citizens identified 27 key ways to fill a larger portion of the plates of the island’s roughly 74,000 residents with locally grown and produced fare. Civil Beat.

Click here to get your copy of Hawaii Business' January/February 2023 issue!
Dive into some of our latest features!
What Happens When Private Equity Is Your Landlord in Hawai‘i
How the Construction Industry Aims to Tackle Hawai‘i’s Biggest Problems
Your Next Hire Should Be a “Hidden Worker”
Hawai‘i Foodbank Has a New Model for Feeding 120,000 People a Month
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