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Follow Up to the Island Trust Break-In… Bike Patrol to Start in Pahoa

Five days ago I blogged about the Pahoa Branch of Island Trust Real Estate being broken into.

Pahoa Branch of Island Trust Properties

Pahoa Branch of Island Trust Properties

This follows the Christmas Eve burglaries of several Pahoa town businesses.

Two good news items to follow up on this.

I received the following email from the owner of Island Trust:

“…The police finally called me back about the break-in (it took ’em 6 days..)
According to the officer, it seems that there was some event happening at Shaka’s, and a witness saw two “males” kick the door in. The witness called the cops and they showed up and actually arrested one of the guys.
He was a 17-year old juvenile, and he was booked and released. He has to appear in Family Court for it. The total for the damage / repair was almost $800…

I appreciate the follow-up on the incident and it’s good to know that this was a random incident that was not apparently related to the other burglaries.

The other good news.

I attended the Pahoa Main Street Association meeting last night, and it was mentioned that a Bike Patrol would soon be started up using funds from the federal “Weed and Seed” program.

I forgot to ask who would be running the program, but after a follow up email, I learned that the Police Department will be running it.

It was almost three years ago that US Attorney gave Pahoa $175,000 for the weed and seed program.

Another look back at the announcement by US Attorney Ed Kubo can be found here.

I sure hope the Bike Patrol works and that it is good use of the funds.  I know of a bunch of people who would just love to ride around the town at night for probably a third of what the officers will be making. :roll:

I’m not sure when it’s going to be starting up… but don’t be shocked to see police officers riding bikes around 24 hours a day now.


Economy Reduces New UH Hilo Dorm Plans From $200 Million to $74 Million

OUCH!  This hurts UH Hilo big time:

The nation’s financial meltdown has forced the developer of a long-planned student housing and retail complex in Hilo to scale back the project.

Bridgecreek International, based in Huntington Beach, Calif., had planned to build a $200 million complex that would include dormitories for 1,200 University of Hawaii at Hilo students on state land in exchange for rights to also develop a hotel and retail center on the property.

The project, called the U.S.-China Center, has been scaled back to $74 million and will house approximately 800 students, according to John Carlson, Bridgecreek’s president of development.

He said the redesign involves scrapping plans for four multistory dormitories and instead building clusters of two-story walk-up townhouses.

Nineteen Fire Fighters Graduated From 37th Recruiting Class

Eddie Abe, Andrew Penny, Adam Naehu, Kyle Teves, Randy Castro, Marcus Helm, Tay Soares, Helaku Hedlund, Micah Chew-Maarumoto, Kyle Vares, Aaron Mitchell, Jeremy Tekurio, Brysen Heidenfeldt, Yurik Resetnikov, James Kupahu and John Martin.

Members of the Hawaii Fire Department’s 37th Fire Fighter Recruit Class pose for a class photo. From left to right: Eddie Abe, Andrew Penny, Adam Naehu, Kyle Teves, Randy Castro, Marcus Helm, Tay Soares, Helaku Hedlund, Micah Chew-Maarumoto, Kyle Vares, Aaron Mitchell, Jeremy Tekurio, Brysen Heidenfeldt, Yurik Resetnikov, James Kupahu and John Martin.

Media Release

Nineteen fire fighters graduated from 37th recruit class

The Hawaii Fire Department held commencement exercises for its 37th Fire Fighter Recruit Class on Friday, December 19, 2008, at the Nani Mau Gardens in Hilo.

The new Fire Fighters are:  Eddie Abe, Randy Castro, Micah Chew-Marumoto, Helaku Hedlund, Brysen Heidenfeldt, Marcus Helm, James Kupahu, John Martin, Aaron Mitchell, Adam Naehu, Andrew Penny, Yurik Resetnikov, Jeremy Tekurio, Kyle Teves, Tay Soares, and Kyle Vares.

The class underwent 11 months of intensive instruction and fieldwork.  The first 5½ months involved fire and rescue training that included a nationally recognized fire science curriculum, wildland fire training, hazardous materials operations training, rescue operations familiarization, lifeguard certification, and driver training.

The remainder of their training was spent at the Emergency Medical Services Training Center where the fire fighters earned their Emergency Medical Technicians Basic and Intermediate certifications.  During this time, they also spent nine weeks applying their emergency medical technicians skills on clinical rotations through Central, Kawailani, Keaau, Kailua, and Pahoa Fire Stations on the ambulance, as well as at the Emergency Room, Obstetrics, and Intensive Care Units at Hilo Medical Center and the Kona Community Hospital.

At the luncheon ceremonies, Mayor Billy Kenoi congratulated the recruits for completing their extremely vigorous training program that has prepared them to serve the public.  He applauded them for their courage, dedication and commitment to their chosen profession.  He said, “You are one of the few County employees who we ask to make a sacrifice for your family and friends.”  Mayor Kenoi reminded the class to treat everyone with aloha, respect, and compassion as they embark on their careers.

Fire Chief Darryl Oliveira spoke of celebration, sacrifice, and giving thanks.  He told the class that they are here today to celebrate their accomplishments and hard work, as well as the work put forth by their instructors.  But most importantly, he stressed the sacrifice, commitment and support of their families and friends, saying
“that’s the true celebration.”  Chief Oliveira also asked the recruits to be thankful for what they have and to be cognizant of the impact of the economy and challenges they will encounter.  “As you go out, carry your position, and keep in mind the last few words of our mission statement:  dedicated to serve with pride, honor and compassion.”

Fire Commissioner Wil Okabe congratulated the recruits for surviving their training and also applauded the parents and friends for their support of these young men.  He reminded the class that their mission is to save lives.  “Each time you meet a person in stress or distress, you will be faced with people who want your help.  You are the privileged individuals who are able to help them.”  In closing, Commissioner Okabe thanked the recruits for their service and welcomed them to the Hawaii Fire Department ohana.

Mr. James Gray, who was the instructor for the Emergency Medical Technician segment of the class, encouraged the recruits to keep up their studies and maintain their skills.  He said, “Always have compassion and empathy for your patients.  Never forget where you came from.”

Captain Gerald Kosaki of the Fire Department’s Training Bureau stressed to the class the importance of maintaining a positive attitude throughout their careers and remembering the teamwork concept.  He urged them to give it their best for the next 25 years.

The 37th Fire Fighter Class message was delivered by Kyle Vares, who told the audience that it’s been a year of challenges, but more importantly, a year of accomplishment.  On behalf of his class, he thanked their families for their understanding and support, as they have been the key for the class standing here today.  “As we begin our careers, we look forward to the privilege of serving our communities.”

Having successfully met all the criteria of their recruit training, the 37th Fire Fighter Class was presented to Fire Chief Darryl Oliveira and Deputy Fire Chief Glen Honda, who issued them their badges.  As is customary in fire service, the fire fighters then chose a family member or friend to pin their badge on their uniform.

The new fire fighters will soon receive their first station assignments.

Wagner Removes Himself as Candidate for UH Hilo Athletic Director

I blogged yesterday that former UH Football coach Bob Wagner was in contention for UH Hilo’s Athletic Director position, well he has pulled out of the race.

Hat tip to Dave Reardons Sports Extra:

I have been honored to be a finalist for the University at Hilo Athletic director position, but I have removed myself as a candidate…

More Here

Konichiwa Nihon Sun

As everyone knows… I’m always looking for different blogs from the islands to put on my ‘Roll.

For the first time ever, I’m adding something that most wouldn’t expect on my blog, and that is an RSS feed from the Blog/Paper “Nihon Sun“.  So check it out on the bottom left when you get the chance.


Japan is often portrayed as simply a destination for sightseeing but there is a lot more to this county than temples, shrines, sumo and sushi. While there are, without a doubt, beautiful and breathtaking sights to behold, the centuries of history and the culture that they are built upon runs much deeper than any snapshot can portray.

The Nihon Sun will delve into this unique culture and present some of the country’s great travel destinations and local events all while striving to provide you with additional information that will enrich your experience of Japan, whether you are visiting in person, virtually, or whether you make the county your home.

Rep. Gene Ward Calls for Solar Power on EVERY Roof… The Video


From his office at the State of Hawaii Capitol, Representative Gene Ward discusses the necessity of solar energy.”


New Playground Blessing at Keaau’s Shipman Park Monday

Media Release

New playground blessing at Keaau’s Shipman Park

New playground equipment at Herbert C. Shipman Park in Keaau will be blessed in a ceremony on Monday, Jan. 12, 2009.

The public is invited to take part in the ceremony beginning at 10 a.m. The blessing will be performed by the Rev. Earl Ikeda of Puna Hongwanji Mission.

Hawaii County Council Chairman J Yoshimoto, who represents the Third Council District where the park is located, is coordinating the event. Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi also will attend the ceremony and make brief remarks.

Free refreshments will be provided by W.H. Shipman, Ltd., and Puna Fresh Foods.

Site Engineering, Inc., was the contractor for the $258,400 playground. The project includes improvements to various walkways in the area, required by the federal Americans With Disabilities Act, at an additional cost of $32,412.

The project was designed and prepared by the Department of Parks and Recreation’s Planning Section staff and consists of four major components: a set of toddlers’ (2-5 years old) play equipment, a set of children’s (5-12 years old) play equipment, a climbing wall, and a swing set with two swings. The entire playground has a recycled rubber safety surfacing system that meets current standards of playground safety.

Council Chairman Yoshimoto initiated the project and supported its construction with a funding in the amount of $50,000.  The balance was provided by the county Parks and Recreation Department’s Capital Improvement funds for playgrounds and disabled accessibility projects.

Aubrey Summers, County Park Projects Manager, was primarily responsible for the project, designing the playground, bidding the project and overseeing its construction.

Ohana Fun Day Tomorrow at Kurtistown Park


On Saturday, January 10th, the following participating agencies and groups will hold the “Ohana Fun Day” at Kurtistown Ballpark:

Puna Community Action Team Members, County of Hawaii Community Policing, County of Hawaii Police Activities League, Hawaiian Beaches Action Team, County of Hawaii Parks and Recreation Department, The Salvation Army – Family Intervention Services, Neighborhood Place of Puna, Puna Congressional Church, Liz Salfen, Kea’au High School Athletics, Fred Blas of the Hawaiian Beaches Action Team, Queen Liliuokalani Children’s Center and other community members.

The event is free and as you can see from above, definetely an event to bring your kids too.