Mayor Kenoi Supports Withdrawal of Spigot Bill

Councilman Enriques to convene task on free water issues…
From the Mayor’s Office:

Mayor Billy Kenoi is supporting a request to withdraw the administration’s proposal to regulate the use of public County water spigots on Friday’s Hawai‘i County Council agenda.

The administration submitted Bill 189 to prevent abuse of the free water provided by the County at 15 public spigots located around the island.

The County provides the water for personal, non-commercial use. Residents are encouraged to limit their use to 50 gallons per person per day for personal, non-commercial use, but currently no restrictions apply to the intended use or amount of water that an individual may take from the spigots.

The County has received reports of people taking amounts far in excess of 50 gallons and using the free water for agricultural and commercial purposes. The County pays for the water that is provided free at the spigots.

Bill 189 was intended to prevent abuse of the free public water in fairness to all residents of the County. But concerns raised in a January 14, 2010 letter from 6th District Councilman Guy Enriques prompted Mayor Kenoi to support the request that the Bill be postponed for further review.

Councilman Enriques asked Council Chairman J Yoshimoto on January 14, 2010 to postpone discussion of the Bill on the Council’s Friday, January 22 agenda, based on “heavy public response after the presentation at the Finance Committee on January 5,

2010, (which) brought forward many questions about the rights, costs and accessibility of water.”

“Furthermore,” Enriques wrote, “Bill 189 comes at an inappropriate time with the current drought coupled with the economic downturn dramatically increasing the spigot use in every district.”

Kenoi responded to Enriques in a letter delivered today.

“Having heard from your constituents in Council District 6, who are the largest consumers of water from public spigots in the County, I respect your concerns,” Kenoi wrote. Mayor Kenoi concurred with Enriques’ request, “provided that (Enriques) convene a task force involving residents, stakeholders and the Hawai‘i County Civil Defense to explore a fair and equitable management solution for our County spigots.

“I appreciate Councilman Enriques’ understanding of his district’s residents and their concerns and accept his offer to convene a task force to look into the complex issues regarding the spigots before we move forward with this proposal,” Kenoi said.

“We should give our residents a better opportunity to present alternative ideas and solutions with the intent that a new bill will be submitted for the Council’s consideration following further review of the important issues involved.”

Hawaii County Puts Historic Banyan on Chopping Block

Editorial By Sydney Ross Singer:

There was a time, not long ago, when environmentalists protected trees from being cut down by developers. Now, trees need to be protected from environmentalists cutting them down.

A case in point is a beautiful, majestic banyan tree that graces Reed’s Bay Beach Park, in Hilo. This area of Hilo boasts numerous banyan trees, many named after famous people and planted over 70 years ago in their honor. In 1934, Princess Kawananakoa planted a banyan here. In fact, the street these are on is called Banyan Drive.

This particular banyan can be seen as you enter Banyan drive, and is the centerpiece of Reeds Bay Park. This tree should be listed as one of the most beautiful banyan specimens, indeed one of the most beautiful trees of any kind. The size of a three story house, it offers needed shade, its roots keep the shoreline intact, and it creates a magical, almost mystical ambiance that delights residents and tourists. Planted in the 1930’s, it has survived four tsunamis…

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Hawaii Mayors in Washington DC Now

Mayor Kenoi along with Mayors Mufi Hanneman, Bernard P. Carvalho Jr. and Charmaine Tavares are all attending the 78th Winter Meeting of the US Conference of Mayors in Washington DC right now.

The Hawaii Mayors surround US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan

Media Release:

More than 230 of the nation’s mayors, led by U.S. Conference of Mayors President Burnsville, MN, Mayor Elizabeth Kautz, will convene for the 78th Winter Meeting of The U.S. Conference of Mayors on Wednesday, January 20-Friday, January 22, at the Capital Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The nation’s mayors will meet with the Obama Administration and Congress to advocate for a national bipartisan political agenda that confronts the unemployment that still exists on main street America, the need for a federal/city partnership on climate protection and energy with block grants to cities producing green jobs, and a more balanced transportation bill next year that recognizes the necessity to modernize the current transportation system in order to daily move goods, services and people in our metro areas of the nation.

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Soul Surfer Begins Shooting in Hawaii Next Week – The Bethany Hamilton Story

Bethany Hamilton, the surfer on the North Shore of Oahu who lost her arm to a shark bite is about to have a Major Hollywood movie made about her story.

Carrie Underwood, Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt and others are scheduled to be part of the film which begins filming next week on the North Shore of Oahu.

Filmmaker Kevin Sorbo tweeted out the following a few days ago:

  1. i am so happy to be doing this movie. great story of overcoming tragedy. 5:23 AM Jan 16th from web
  2. Check this video out — Bethany Hamilton Tells Her Story…. http://youtu.be/duelon0MF2o i will meet her next week. 5:23 AM Jan 16th from web

  3. name of movie is ‘soul surfer’. touching story. i will be starring with dennis quaid, helen hunt, carrie underwood, anna sophia robb. 5:18 AM Jan 16th from web

  4. i am showing you this video because i will be shooting Bethany’s movie in hawaii. 6 week shoot in hawaii. start shooting jan. 25. 5:16 AM Jan 16th from web

  5. Check this video out — Heart of a Soul Surfer: The Bethany Hamilton Story http://youtu.be/nnrpFWcFFxc 5:15 AM Jan 16th from web

  6. just booked a movie in hawaii…..details to follow! 2:55 PM Jan 15th from web

Today: Public Meeting on Puna Community Development Plan Action Committee

DATE: Thursday, January 21, 2010

TIME: 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

PLACE: Kea‘au Community Center

AGENDA

CALL TO ORDER

ANNOUNCEMENTS/ADDITIONS TO THE AGENDA : (5 min)

PUBLIC TESTIMONY ON AGENDA ITEMS:

Testimony shall be limited to items on the agenda. Persons wishing to provide oral testimony are asked to submit a completed request form to the meeting Recorder prior to the completion of each Public Testimony portion of the meeting. Oral testimony shall be limited to three (3) minutes in length per agenda item during the Public Testimony portion of the meeting or immediately prior to an agenda item, subject to the discretion of the Chair.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: (5 min)

December 18, 2009 meeting

UNFINISHED BUSINESS:

None

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Planning Director BJ Leithead Todd: Meet and welcome the Action Committee. Review the Action Committees roles and responsibilities and the CDP amendment procedure process. (40 min)

2. Action Item 3.1.3.(B) item 4 and 3.2.3 (E): Discuss making a recommendation to the County Council to submit a resolution to the State House and Senate proposing legislation enabling the County to retain lots delinquent in property taxes. (20 min)

3. Sub-Committee Reports: Each sub-committee shall report on how they intend to proceed and ideas for prioritizing action items. (40 min)

4. Action Committee Support Budget: Discussion on requesting funds for FY 2010 – 2011 to provide continued staff support services to the Action Committee. (20 min)

5. Action Committee Workshops: Action Committee to discuss the need for educational workshops, determining level of interest, workshop topics and workshop dates. (10 min)

PUBLIC TESTIMONY ON AGENDA ITEMS:

AGENDA FOR NEXT MEETING AT KEA`AU COMMUNITY CENTER ON FEBRUARY 18, 2010 FROM 3-6 PM.

Identify agenda items for the next meeting.