Men Get Lost Trying to View Lava – Fire Department Helicopter Saves the Day

Two male newcomers to the Big Island got lost in a heavily forested area of the Big Island in what appears to be an attempt to see the lava flow.

Hawaii Fire Department reports that the party was lost on their way coming out of the “pristine rainforest” Thursday, January 29, 2015.  On the way out of the forest they couldn’t find the trail they came in and called a friend on their cell phones to report that they were lost.

They stayed overnight in the forest and Hawaii County Fire Department’s Chopper One assisted in rescuing them this morning.

Here is the Fire Departments incident report:

Stupid Lava Hikers

Big Island Police Release Picture of Officer Arrested Today

The Hawaii Police Department has released a mugshot of  Sergeant Marvin Kelly Troutman involved in today’s incident:

Kelly Troutman

Marvin Kelly Troutman

A Hawaiʻi Police Department sergeant has been arrested and charged with four offenses in connection with an early morning incident in Kapaʻau.

In response to a 1:50 a.m. call, officers responded to a home on Kynnersley Road, where it was reported that 62-year-old Marvin Kelly Troutman had pulled the hair of a 55-year-old woman and then threatened her and an 18-year-old man.

When police responded, Troutman reportedly threatened a 44-year-old police officer.

He was arrested and taken to the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Juvenile Aid Section, which is responsible for domestic abuse cases, continued the investigation.

At 3:35 p.m. Thursday (January 29), Troutman was charged with abuse of a family/household member and three counts of terroristic threatening. His bail was set at $4,000.

In addition to the criminal investigation, police have initiated an internal administrative investigation into the incident. Troutman, a sergeant in charge of the Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit, has been placed on administrative leave.

New USGS Pictures Shows Puna Lava Flow Still Active

The leading tip of the June 27th flow has not advanced significantly over the past week, and remains roughly 500 meters (550 yards) upslope of Highway 130, west of the fire and police station.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Breakouts persist upslope, however, and these areas of activity can be spotted in this photograph by small smoke plumes where the lava is burning vegetation on the flow margins.

This comparison of a normal photograph and a thermal image shows the position of active breakouts relative to the inactive flow tip. The white box shows the rough extent of the thermal image on the right.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

In the thermal image, active breakouts are visible as white and yellow areas. Although active breakouts are absent at the inactive tip of the flow, breakouts are present just a short distance behind the tip, and are also scattered further upslope.

This photograph looks downslope, and shows the proximity of the flow front to the highway.  Click to enlarge

This photograph looks downslope, and shows the proximity of the flow front to the highway. Click to enlarge

A small breakout from the lava tube is burning forest just left of the center of the photograph. In the upper left, thick fume is emitted from Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Near the top of the photograph, the snow-covered peak of Mauna Loa can be seen.

This photograph looks upslope along the ground crack system of Kīlauea's East Rift Zone.  Click to enlarge

This photograph looks upslope along the ground crack system of Kīlauea’s East Rift Zone. Click to enlarge

Big Island Police Sergeant Charged with Abuse and Terroristic Threatening

 

A Hawaiʻi Police Department sergeant has been arrested and charged with four offenses in connection with an early morning incident in Kapaʻau.

Kelly Troutman
In response to a 1:50 a.m. call, officers responded to a home on Kynnersley Road, where it was reported that 62-year-old Marvin Kelly Troutman had pulled the hair of a 55-year-old woman and then threatened her and an 18-year-old man.

When police responded, Troutman reportedly threatened a 44-year-old police officer.

He was arrested and taken to the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Juvenile Aid Section, which is responsible for domestic abuse cases, continued the investigation.

At 3:35 p.m. Thursday (January 29), Troutman was charged with abuse of a family/household member and three counts of terroristic threatening. His bail was set at $4,000.

In addition to the criminal investigation, police have initiated an internal administrative investigation into the incident. Troutman, a sergeant in charge of the Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit, has been placed on administrative leave.

The Hilo Drug Company: A Pharmacy in the Midst of Changing Federal Legislation

In a 2013 program at the Lyman Museum, Mimi Pezzuto of UH-Hilo’s College of Pharmacy addressed the question: “What can we learn about the life of a community by looking at lists of names, dates, and pharmaceutical ingredients?”

Hilo Drug Co., Ltd. near left and American Factors across street. Hawaii State Archives - Date: ca. 1928

Hilo Drug Co., Ltd. near left and American Factors across street. Hawaii State Archives – Date: ca. 1928

Her presentation of the contents of weighty prescription logs from the now-defunct Hilo Drug Company illustrated some of the afflictions suffered by residents of old Hilo town in the years 1894 to 1945, and the substances and practices used to treat them.

On February 23, 2015 once again at the Lyman Museum in Hilo, Mimi is joined by archivist Helen Wong Smith to discuss the differences between Hawai`i and the United States, in the legislation and medical practices of that era, including opium prescriptions and the licensing of kāhuna.

Courtesy of the Lyman Museum

Courtesy of the Lyman Museum

Prescription logs and other local pharmacy ephemera will be available for viewing!

Women’s Legislative Caucus House-Senate Joint Package Focuses on Safety and Well-Being of Women

The Women’s Legislative Caucus, consisting of members from both the state Senate and House, today announced a joint package of measures for the 2015 legislative session.

2015 Women's Legislative Caucus Members

2015 Women’s Legislative Caucus Members

The package of bills cover five areas of concern to women of all ages and economic background, including improving reporting and enforcement of domestic violence and sexual assaults, reducing violence and sexual assaults on college campuses, ensuring women’s access to healthcare, addressing Hawaii’s high cost of living faced by working families, and restoring public trust of Hawaii’s law enforcement community.

“Domestic violence, campus assaults, perceived unsympathetic law enforcement officials—all of these issues remain ongoing concerns for women of all ages from all backgrounds,” said Representative Della Au Belatti (Makiki, Tantalus, Papakolea, McCully, Pawaa, Manoa). “Whenever we think we are making progress, reports like the recent Star Advertiser article on the U.S. Department of Education’s investigation of 55 college campuses across the nation punctures that balloon.”

“It shows we need to continue to press our case for better reporting and enforcement of domestic violence and sexual assault on our schools campuses, for greater transparency and accountability from our law enforcement entities, for better access to health care for women, and for greater support for women who are often more vulnerable to the high cost of living in Hawaii.”

“This year’s caucus package represents the collaborative work of women legislators and the Women’s Coalition, the community counterpart to the Women’s Legislative Caucus,” said Senator Rosalyn Baker (South and West Maui). “These bills address some of the important societal issues facing women and girls – security in home, workplace and community.

“In the package we also highlight our concern for women’s health.  Breast and cervical cancer still goes undetected for too many women in Hawaii.  One of our bills will provide funding to expand screening and treatment services to underserved, at-risk women.  These cancers can be successfully treated and cured, if found early.  This bill’s modest investment will save suffering, healthcare costs and lives.  Together, our package will help to create a safer and healthier environment and contribute to a better quality of life for Hawaii’s women and their families.”

“Our state has the highest cost of living in the nation and we are in dire need of affordable housing,” added Senator Suzanne Chun Oakland (Liliha, Palama, Iwilei, Kalihi, Nuuanu, Pacific Heights, Pauoa, Lower Tantalus, Downtown).  “A 2011 housing study informed the state that we will be 50,000 housing units short by 2016.  This creates a perfect storm for many low-income earners, many of whom are women supporting their families, who are trying to get by paycheck to paycheck and keep a roof over their heads. Amending the income tax credit for low-income renters is one strategic component that will put more money in their pockets to support their families.”

“Different decades of women banding together can make a powerful sisterhood which will make our communities, state and world a safer and better place,” said Representative Cynthia Thielen (Kailua, Kaneohe Bay).

This year’s package is dedicated to the Women’s Coalition in recognition of their commitment and advocacy for women and girls.

The Women’s Coalition, established in 1990 by former State Representative Annelle Amaral, is a coalition of community organizations and volunteers from across the state that raise awareness and advocate for important issues to women and families.  Through its own collaborative processes, the Women’s Coalition assists the Caucus in creating its legislative practice.

The Women’s Legislative Caucus is made up of all the female members of the state House and Senate.  Each year the caucus presents a package of bills relevant to the well-being of women and families and supports the bills throughout the legislative session. Belatti, Baker, Chun Oakland and Thielen serve as co-chairs of the Caucus.

IMPROVING REPORTING & ENFORCEMENT PRACTICES RELATED TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE & SEXUAL ASSAULT

HB446/SB384, relating to the Confidentiality Program, Confidentiality Program Surcharge Fund and Confidentiality Program Grant Fund

Establishes the Address Confidentiality Program to help survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault relocate and keep their addresses confidential.  Creates the Address Confidentiality Program Surcharge Fund.

HB447/SB390, relating to domestic abuse, Department of Human Services and Family Court

Removes certain unnecessary and redundant reporting responsibilities of the family courts and the Department of Human Services in cases where temporary restraining orders are sought for alleged domestic abuse involving a family or household member who is a minor or incapacitated person.

HB448/SB386, relating to domestic violence fatality reviews and Department of Health

Requires the Department of Health to conduct reviews of domestic violence fatalities, near-deaths, and suicides.  Requires the DOH to enter into a memorandum of understanding to develop procedures for obtaining information relating to near-deaths resulting from intimate partner assaults.  Requires reviews to commence within one year following the death, near-death, or suicide.  Requires information and recommendations from the review process to be compiled for system reform efforts.

HB453/SB391, relating to psychologists continuing education, ethics and domestic violence

Amends the continuing education requirement for psychologists to include at least three credit hours of ethics training and at least two credit hours of domestic violence training.

HB452/SB393, relating to statewide sexual assault services, the Attorney General, base budget and appropriations

Appropriates funds to increase the base budget of the Department of the Attorney General for statewide sexual assault services for fiscal biennium 2016-2017 to $2,380,000 per fiscal year. Beginning with the 2017-2018 fiscal year, requires the base budget of the Department of the Attorney General for statewide sexual assault services to be at least $2,380,000 per fiscal year.

REDUCING VIOLENCE & SEXUAL ASSAULTS ON COLLEGE CAMPUSES

HB451/SB387, relating to affirmative consent and the University of Hawaii system

Requires the University of Hawaii system to establish and enforce an affirmative consent standard for all policies and protocols relating to sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking as a condition of receiving state funds for student assistance.

ENSURING ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE

HB455/SB385, relating to the Breast and Cervical Cancer Control Program, the Department of Health and appropriations

Appropriates funds to the Department of Health for the breast and cervical cancer control program.

ADDRESSING HAWAII’S HIGH COST OF LIVING FOR WORKING FAMILIES

HB454/SB392, relating to the income tax credit and low-income household renters

Amends income tax credit for low-income household renters to adjust for inflation.  Applies to taxable years beginning after 12/31/2015.

RESTORING PUBLIC TRUST WITH TRANSPARENCY & ACCOUNTABILITY OVER POLICE POLICIES & PROCEDURES

HB449/SB388, relating to county police departments, domestic violence policies and standards of conduct

Requires each county police department to post its policies relating to domestic violence, officer-involved domestic violence, and standards of conduct on its official website.

HB450/SB389, relating to police commissioners, county police commissions, composition and requirements

Amends the composition of the county police commissions to require that three commissioners on each police commission have backgrounds, including equality for women, civil rights, and law enforcement for the benefit of the public.

The public can participate in legislative discussions and follow the progress of the bills by logging onto the Capitol website at http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/advreports/advreport.aspx?report=package&pkey=12&year=2015&name=Women%27s+Legislative+Caucus

For more information, please contact:

Senate

  • Senator Rosalyn Baker 808-586-6070
  • Senator Suzanne Chun Oakland 808-586-6130

House of Representatives

  • Representative Della Au Belatti 808-586-9425
  • Representative Cynthia Thielen 808-586-6480

 

Hawaii Coast Guard Officer Convicted for Multiple Violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice

A Coast Guard officer was convicted during a general court-martial for multiple violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice at the Coast Guard Courtroom in the Prince Kuhio Federal Building, Tuesday.

Ens. Johnson Knox

Ens. Johnson Knox

Ens. Johnson C. Knox was found guilty of the following charges:

  • Article 112a – Wrongful use, possession and distribution of multiple controlled substances.
  • Article 80 – Attempting to manufacture MDMA (Ecstasy) and attempt to engage in a prohibited relationship.
  • Article 93 – Cruelty and maltreatment toward a subordinate.
  • Article 128 – Assault consummated by battery.
  • Article 134 – Communicating indecent language to a subordinate.
  • Article 86 – Absence without leave
  • Article 92 – Failure to obey an order or regulation and dereliction of duty.

Knox was sentenced to three years confinement in a military brig and received a dismissal from the Coast Guard.

While awaiting court-martial, Knox served at Coast Guard Base Honolulu. He was assigned to the Coast Guard Cutter Kukui at the time of most of the offenses.

Two Children Die in Big Island House Fire

Hawaiʻi Island detectives are at the scene of a fatal fire in Hōlualoa.

At 1:56 a.m. Thursday (January 29), Kona Patrol officers responded to a residential fire on the 76-5200 block of Old Māmalahoa Highway.

When they arrived, the one-story house was fully engulfed in flames. Fire Department personnel extinguished the fire.

Two adults and two children were able to exit the house. Two other children, tentatively identified as an 11-year-old boy and a 6-year-old boy, died in the fire. Their identity is being withheld pending positive identification.
12915structure fire
Police and Fire Department personnel are jointly investigating the cause of the fire.

Police do no suspect foul play. An autopsy will be scheduled to determine the exact cause of death.

UPDATE:
Hawaiʻi Island police have identified the two boys killed in a residential fire in Hōlualoa early Thursday.

They were identified as 6-year-old Kaeden Matsuyama and 11-year-old Dexen Matsuyama.

Results of an autopsy conducted Thursday (January 29) have been deferred pending lab tests.

Department of Parks and Recreation Receives $50,000 State Grant to Control Little Fire Ants

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation has received a $50,000 grant from the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority to control little fire ants at specific park sites.

Little Fire Ant – Queen and worker ant

Little Fire Ant – Queen and worker ant

The Department of Parks and Recreation is one of four Hawai‘i Island organizations selected by the HTA for a grant award under its 2015 Natural Resources Program. Funding will be used to pay the Department’s three-person team of little fire ant control technicians, purchase bait and subsidize other expenses related to the ongoing treatment program.

To meet the grant terms of improving both the visitor experience and resident enjoyment of Hawai‘i’s natural resources, treatment efforts will be conducted at Richardson Ocean Park, Lili‘uokalani Gardens and the Pana‘ewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens through December 2015. The free sites are popular with visitors and residents.

Little fire ants are considered to be one of the world’s worst invasive species. They inflict painful stings that can cause welts in humans and blind animals.

The Department of Parks and Recreation thanks the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, which administers the grant program, for supporting its efforts to control little fire ants in the public’s parks. Treatment efforts are ongoing at 28 County recreational sites and facilities found to have the highest concentrations of little fire ants.

Hawaii Chief Justice Delivers State of the Judiciary Address

Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald delivered the State of the Judiciary address today at a joint session of the State Senate and House.

Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald

Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald

The mission of the Judiciary is to deliver justice for all.  We do that in many different ways, both in the courtroom and in the community. We ensure that people are treated fairly, whatever their background. We uphold the rights and protections of the constitution, even when doing so may be unpopular.  We provide a place where people can peacefully resolve their disputes, as well as opportunities for them to move forward from the circumstances that brought them before the courts,” said CJ Recktenwald.

One key focus of the State of the Judiciary address was “Access to Justice,” and the Judiciary’s efforts to provide equal justice to all.  CJ Recktenwald thanked the Access to Justice Commission for achieving “amazing results with extremely limited resources,” and the many attorneys who volunteer their time towards this mission.

He highlighted the opening of self-help centers in courthouses across the state.  Since the first center opened in 2011, more than 7,600 people have been assisted, at almost no cost to the public.  The Judiciary is also using technology to expand its reach and accessibility. In partnership with the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii and the Hawaii State Public Library System, interactive software to help litigants fill out court forms, is now available on the Judiciary’s website and libraries statewide.

Additional Judiciary initiatives highlighted in the address include:

  • Expansion of the Veterans Treatment Court to the Big Island
  • First Circuit Family Court’s Zero-to-Three Court, which is designed to meet the needs of infants and toddlers whose parents are suspected of abuse or neglect
  • Permanency Court, which focuses on the needs of kids who are “aging out” of the foster care system
  • Courts in the Community Outreach Program, which gives high school students the opportunity to go beyond textbooks and experience an actual Supreme Court oral argument.

CJ Recktenwald also discussed several new initiatives, including: a HOPE Pretrial Pilot Project, designed to apply the same HOPE strategies to defendants who have been charged with crimes and released on conditions prior to their trials; the Girls Court program, which will be expanding to Kauai next month; and confirmed plans for an environmental court to be implemented as scheduled by July 1, 2015.

CJ Recktenwald also addressed the challenges of the future.  One of the challenges he discussed was the need to improve infrastructure and to provide a new courthouse to meet the needs of the growing West Hawaii community.

“Currently in West Hawai‘i, court proceedings are being held in three different locations, in buildings that were not designed as courthouses, which in turn has led to severe security, logistical, and operational problems,” described CJ Recktenwald.  “To address these concerns, we have proposed building a centralized courthouse in Kona,” he added.

The Judiciary launched a new website this week dedicated to the Kona Judiciary Complex Project.  This website displays the preliminary design plans, provides project updates, and welcomes feedback from the public.

CJ Recktenwald concluded the address by thanking the more than 1,800 justices, judges, and judiciary staff “who put their hearts and souls” into making equal justice for all a reality each and every day.  He also thanked all the volunteers and partners in the community and other branches of government who work side-by-side with the Judiciary towards fulfilling the mission of providing justice for all in Hawaii.

HI-PAL Basketball Results – Hoop Dreams Claim Title

More than 70 youths from 10 teams participated in the HI-PAL “Click It or Ticket” 12-and-under basketball championships this past weekend at Carvalho Park.

My son doing his best to block out against the big boys!

My son doing his best to block out against the big boys!

Hoop Dreams raced past Stray-Kats 49-19 to claim the tournament title. Kaukahi Alameda scored 14 points and Kiaʻi Apele, added 12 to spark the champions. Jamichael Labuanan scored eight to lead the runners-up.

Hoop Dreams

Hoop Dreams

Members of the championship Hoop Dreams squad included Alameda, Apele, Kilohana Hassenritter, Shesley Martinez, Guyson Ogata, Dominique Pacheco, Keegan Scanlan and Kaupena Yasso.

In the Third Place contest, Waiākea Titans edged Kamehameha Warriors 26-14. Johnacy Mackwelung led the Titans with 14 points. The Warriors were led by Micah Low’s six points.

Others teams participating in the event were the Andrews Hawks, B-Elite, Kaʻu Champs, Keaʻau Chargers Red, Keaʻau Chargers Black and Rise Above.

“Click It or Ticket” is a national education and enforcement campaign to increase seat belt usage and decrease traffic fatalities and injuries. The Hawaʻii Police Department encourages all youth, teens and adults to use their seat belts.

6th Suspect Caught in Crime Spree, Charged with 40 Offenses – Police Investigating Others

The 6th suspect in a crime spree spanning four months has been charged with 40 offenses.

Stephen Kaleo Graham

Stephen Kaleo Graham

Stephen Kaleo Graham, 26, of Captain Cook was arrested Saturday (January 24) at OTEC Beach in Kailua-Kona on a bench warrant for contempt of court. He was taken to the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section continued investigating numerous other offenses.

At 11 a.m. Monday, Graham was charged with four counts of burglary, seven counts of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, five counts of unauthorized entry of a motor vehicle, eight counts of theft, three counts of terroristic threatening, three counts of theft/forgery of a credit card, three counts of fraudulent use of a credit card, two counts of unauthorized possession of personal confidential information, two counts of resisting an order to stop and one count each of criminal property damage, reckless endangering and speeding.

His bail was set at $384,250. He remained in the cellblock until his initial court appearance on Tuesday (January 27).

The crime spree from South Kohala to Kaʻū between October 7 and January 16 included commercial burglaries, auto thefts, car break-ins and the theft and fraudulent use of credit cards.

Five other persons were previously arrested and charged with offenses in connection with this series of crimes. They are:

30-year-old Douglas Daniel Kaimiola of Captain Cook
23-year-old Joshua White of Kailua-Kona
19-year-old Dyllan Kaiehu Paulo-Leslie of Captain Cook
30-year-old Keoni Fujio Yamada of Kailua-Kona
25-year-old Logan Kahele-Bishop of Nāʻālehu

Detectives are continuing to investigate additional suspects.

Pāhoa Lava Viewing Area Closing

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation will stop operating the Pāhoa Lava Viewing Area at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 31.

The June 27 Lava flow nearly took out the transfer station.

The June 27 Lava flow nearly took out the transfer station.

Located at the Pāhoa Transfer Station, the free viewing area is being shut down so the facility can be converted back to its original use as a public trash-collection site.

Pahoa Transfer Station

It also is closed today, January 27, and will be closed again on Thursday, January 29, so schoolchildren displaced by recent lava activity may take field trips to the viewing area and see the stalled front.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 961-8311 or jarmstrong@hawaiicounty.gov.

10th Annual Building and Design Expo

The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce will hold its 10th annual Building & Design Expo February 6 – 8 at the Keauhou Convention Center at the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa.Building and Design ExpoFriday evening the expo is open to the public from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. and includes a musical performance by Randy Ressler. Saturday expo hours are from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Visit over 40 exhibits featuring home design, construction and remodel ideas including home decorating; fine art; windows and doors; flooring and window treatments; kitchen and baths, home energy products and more. The booths will present products, services and information relating to the building and improvement of homes, apartments and condos. Enter to win giveaways and drawings at vendor booths.

Attendees can also enter to win a grand prize: a 2-night stay at the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa.

For additional information regarding the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce Building & Design Expo, go to www.kona-kohala.com or call the Chamber office at 329-1758.

Facebook and Instagram Goes Down – Social Media Users Panic

So Facebook and Instagram are down right now.  Some are reporting this outage due to the storms on the east coast.

What will the world do without Facebook and Instagram?

Hōkūleʻa Ventures Furthest from the Equator in Her History

Traditional Polynesian voyaging canoe Hōkūle’a achieved a new milestone in her journey around the word. During this leg of the Worldwide Voyage, she successfully completed the roundtrip sail from Wellington to Golden Bay, New Zealand. This marks the furthest into the Southern Hemisphere that Hōkūleʻa has sailed in four decades of voyaging. The crew returned safely to Wellington on Saturday, and Hōkūleʻa is now in route to Napier, New Zealand.

Hokulea equator

This leg of the Worldwide Voyage was an ambitious journey, taking Hōkūle’a far beyond the warm waters of the Pacific in which she has travelled extensively over the past four decades. The harsh sea and weather conditions along New Zealand’s South Island and beyond will continue to push the boundaries of contemporary Polynesian voyaging as Hōkūleʻa sails around the world.

hokulea equator3

“On March 8th, 1975, Hōkūle’a was launched with the vision of one voyage to Tahiti and back,” said Bruce Blankenfeld, Pwo (master) navigator with the Polynesian Voyaging Society. “She has been restored and reenergized through the aloha and good mana of our large voyaging community, young and old, from near and far. In 2015, 40 years later, she continues to afford us the opportunity to explore new horizons.”

While on South Island on January 21, 2015, crew had the opportunity to visit and honor the place where a 600-year-old voyaging canoe was recently rediscovered.

hokulea equator 2

Making this connection between Hōkūle’a and her ancient predecessor honors Polynesians’ ability to explore the ocean world, proving the strength and vitality of these voyaging vessels. This ancient Polynesian double-hulled canoe “is the reason why Hōkūleʻa sailed to Mohua Bay,” said the captain for this leg of the voyage, Kālepa Baybayan. “It is to pay homage, to recognize the importance of this artifact.”

“This is the farthest south we have ever gone to a part of the ocean that is notoriously rough,” said Nainoa Thompson, Pwo navigator and president of the Polynesian Voyaging Society. “It was accomplished because of unprecedented collaborations and support, and Kālepa Baybayan’s good leadership. This leg of the Worldwide Voyage was extensive, exceptional, and honored our traditions. It was foundational to our ability to do well as we prepare to depart Polynesia.”

The Hawaiian name for this journey, Mālama Honua, means “to care for our Island Earth” and is taking Hōkūleʻa and her sister canoe Hikianalia across Earth’s oceans to grow a global movement toward a more sustainable world. The Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage, sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines, will cover 47,000 nautical miles, 85 ports, 26 nations, including 12 of UNESCO’s Marine World Heritage sites, through June 2017.

Big Island Man Arrested and Charged with 21 Offenses

A Captain Cook man wanted for questioning in connection with several vehicle break-ins has been arrested and charged with 21 offenses.

The cars, which were parked along Queen Kaʻahumanu Highway near the 81-mile marker, were broken into on January 16.

Dyllan Kaiehu Paulo-Leslie

Dyllan Kaiehu Paulo-Leslie

On Friday (January 23), Kona Patrol officers made a traffic stop on 19-year-old Dyllan Kaiehu Paulo-Leslie in Captain Cook and arrested him on suspicion of driving without a license and driving without insurance. He was taken to the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section investigated additional offenses.

On Saturday (January 24), detectives charged him with driving without a license, driving without insurance, unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, three counts of unauthorized entry of a motor vehicle, four counts of theft, three counts of fraudulent use of a credit card, two counts of theft/forgery of a credit card and three counts of possession of unauthorized personal information. He was also charged with promoting a dangerous drug, promoting a detrimental drug and possession of drug paraphernalia for items found in his backpack during a previous arrest on January 12. His bail was set at $35,025.

He was held at the cellblock until his initial court appearance on Monday (January 26).

Big Island Workshops on Safe Routes to School

The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) will be holding Safe Routes to School (SRTS) informational workshops on the Big Island at the following dates and locations.

Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015
8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Keaukaha Elementary School
240 Desha Avenue, Hilo, HI 96720
Workshop Flyer
Location Map

Click HERE to Register

Friday, Feb. 27, 2015
8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Kahakai Elementary School
76-147 Royal Poinciana Drive, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
Workshop Flyer
Location Map

Click HERE to Register

Community leaders, school officials, health and transportation professionals, law enforcement officers, parents and neighbors who are interested in the implementation of SRTS strategies at all schools statewide are invited to participate.
safe routes

These workshops are offered free of charge with lunch provided.

To register, go to http://hidot.hawaii.gov/highways/srts/ and click on the link under Upcoming Workshops, or contact Tara Lucas at 808-692-7696, or e-mail saferoutestoschool@hawaii.gov.  Workshop size is limited, so please register early.

Communities around the country are using SRTS programs to make it more safe and appealing for children to walk and bicycle to school.  Federal legislation has recognized the value of SRTS programs and has provided funding for states to establish programs.

SRTS programs grow from community’s concerns about safety, health and traffic.  A combination of engineering, education, encouragement, and enforcement strategies are used to address these concerns and make SRTS a reality.

This workshop provides participants with the knowledge and skills to develop sound SRTS programs based on community needs and conditions, best practices and responsible use of resources.  The day concludes with participants learning how to develop an action plan.

Below is an overview of the workshop agenda.  The materials covered will be similar to SRTS workshops HDOT held previously.

  • Why SRTS matters: safety, health and transportation issues
  • Engineering strategies
  • Education and encouragement strategies
  • Enforcement strategies
  • Field exercise: observation of school campus and surrounding area
  • Perspectives from local stakeholders
  • Pick-up and drop-off area strategies
  • Identifying problems and solutions
  • Creating an action plan for your community
  • SRTS federal program in Hawaii 

For more information on the SRTS federal program in Hawaii, please visit http://hidot.hawaii.gov/highways/srts/.

UH Hilo Students Involved In Free Speech Lawsuit To Speak At Grassroot Event

This Friday, January 30, 2015, a special event sponsored by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii will feature the two UH Hilo students whose lawsuit against the university forced the school to revise their free speech policy.
UH Hilo Moniker
Merritt Burch and Anthony Vizzone are the leaders of the Young Americans for Liberty chapter at UH Hilo, and recently made news this year when they were restricted from passing out the U.S. Constitution on campus.

Merritt Burch

Merritt Burch

Merritt and Anthony sued the school and the university was forced to settle the case.

Anthony Vizzone

Anthony Vizzone

The Grassroot Institute will present Merritt and Anthony with the 2015 Unsung Hero Award for their work in challenging the free speech codes at the University of Hawaii at Hilo.

The head of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), Greg Lukianoff, will also join us via a Skype interview.

The event will take place:

Friday, January 30th
7:30 am to 9:00 am
Pacific Club – 1451 Queen Emma Street, Honolulu, HI 96813

Members of the media interested in attending should contact Mercedes Miller at mmiller@grassrootinstitute.org or 808-591-9193.

Pāhoa Pool Nighttime Swim Program Temporarily Suspended

The new nighttime swim program at the Pāhoa Community Aquatic Center is being temporally suspended so the pool may be upgraded to better meet patrons’ needs.

Pahoa Pool

Until further notice, Monday, January 26, will mark the last of the nighttime open-swim sessions offered at the Pāhoa Community Aquatic Center. Lighting and other safety enhancements are needed before the pilot program will be reinstated.

In response to swimmers’ requests for longer operating hours, the Department of Parks and Recreation earlier this month started keeping the pool open until 8 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights.

Normal operating hours of 9 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. closure on weekends) will resume at the Pāhoa Community Aquatic Center starting Tuesday, January 27.

Information regarding County of Hawai‘i swimming pools is available at www.hawaiicounty.gov/pr-aquatics/.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 961-8311 or jarmstrong@hawaiicounty.gov.