Navy Invites Public in Hawaii, San Diego to Open-House Meetings on Draft EIS

The U.S. Navy encourages the public to attend open-house public meetings in Hawaii June 12-15 and on June 20 in San Diego to learn about and comment on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Overseas Environmental Impact Statement (EIS/OEIS) for Navy training and testing activities in the Hawaii-Southern California Study Area.

The HSTT Draft EIS/OEIS takes a comprehensive look at the effects of Navy training and testing on the ocean environment in Hawaii and Southern California, incorporating the latest science. Four open house public meetings will be held in Hawaii and one in San Diego, Calif., to inform the public about the Navy’s Proposed Action and to obtain comments on the Proposed Action and alternatives, and the accuracy and adequacy of the Draft EIS/OEIS analysis. The public may arrive at any time during the open house public meetings.

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There will not be a formal presentation; however, Navy representatives will be available to provide information and answer questions about the Proposed Action and Draft EIS/OEIS. The open house public meetings will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. at:

Date: Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Location: Wilcox Elementary School Cafeteria
4319 Hardy St.
Lihue, HI 96766

Date: Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Location: Maui Waena Intermediate School Cafeteria
795 Onehee Ave.
Kahului, HI 96732

Date: Thursday, June 14, 2012
Location: East Hawaii Cultural Center
141 Kalakaua St. Hilo, HI 96720

Date: Friday, June 15, 2012
Location: McKinley High School Cafeteria
1039 S. King St.
Honolulu, HI 96814

Date: Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Location: Marina Village Conference Center Starboard Room
1936 Quivira Way
San Diego, CA 92109

The Navy proposes to conduct training and testing activities primarily within existing range complexes and operating areas located in the waters around the Hawaiian Islands and off the coast of Southern California, Navy pierside locations in both areas and a transit corridor connecting the Hawaii and Southern California range complexes. The Proposed Action includes the use of active sonar and explosives. The HSTT Draft EIS/OEIS updates the science and analyses needed to continue critical Navy training and testing in the Study Area. The Draft EIS/OEIS combines multiple previous studies into one, thereby incorporating expanded areas and new science, platforms and activities.

Copies of the Draft EIS/OEIS are available to the public at www.HSTTEIS.com and at the following information repositories:

HAWAII

. Lihue Public Library, 4344 Hardy St., Lihue, HI 96766
. Kailua-Kona Public Library, 75-138 Hualalai Road, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
. Wailuku Public Library, 251 High St., Wailuku, HI 96793
. Hilo Public Library, 300 Waianuenue Ave., Hilo, HI 96720
. Hawaii State Library, Hawaii and Pacific Section, 478 S. King St., Honolulu, HI 96813

CALIFORNIA

. San Diego Central Library, 820 E. St., San Diego, CA 92101
. Long Beach Main Library, 101 Pacific Ave., Long Beach, CA 90822

The Navy is accepting comments throughout the 60-day public comment period, from May 11, 2012, to July 10, 2012. All comments must be postmarked or received online by July 10, 2012, for consideration in the Final EIS/OEIS.

Written comments may be submitted via the project website at www.HSTTEIS.com, in person at the public meetings or by mail to:

Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest
Attention: HSTT EIS/OEIS Project Manager – EV21.CS
1220 Pacific Highway, Building 1, Floor 3
San Diego, CA 92132-5190

Visit the project website at www.HSTTEIS.com to learn more about the project.

Big Island Police Searching for 14-Year-Old Waimea Girl Missing Since Tuesday

Big Island police are searching for a 14-year-old Waimea girl who has been missing since Tuesday (June 5).

Kaya Kuumomikai Au

Kaya Kuumomikai Au is described as 5-foot-9, about 130 pounds with long brown hair and brown eyes.

Police ask that anyone with information on her whereabouts call Officer Justin Hooser at 887-3082 or the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Renovated & Improved Waiākea Uka Park & Stanley Costales Gymnasium Rededicated

A renovated and expanded Waiākea Uka Park and Stanley Costales Gymnasium was rededicated during a public ceremony held Thursday morning in Hilo.

Parks & Recreation Director Bob Fitzgerald, Waiākea Uka Athletic Association President Jeff Cabral, and Mayor Billy Kenoi at the re-dedication ceremony.

Mayor Billy Kenoi, Hilo Councilman J Yoshimoto, Parks Director Bob Fitzgerald, and Housing & Community Development Director Steve Arnett joined the Costales family, members of the Waiākea Uka community, and about 100 children attending the first day of the County’s Summer Fun program for the ceremony, held in the newly renovated gymnasium.

The morning began with a blessing by Pastor Sheldon Lacsina of nearby New Hope Christian Fellowship. Councilman Yoshimoto presented Mrs. Roberta Costales, the widow of Stanley Costales, with a framed copy of a 2002 Hawai‘i County ordinance officially naming the gymnasium after the standout athlete who in 1951 signed a professional baseball contract to play shortstop for the Cleveland Indians. Stanley Costales also worked for Department of Parks and Recreation from 1969 to 1987.

“Stanley was a great athlete because of this gym,” Mrs. Costales said.

The gym and park have undergone a $1 million renovation that included adding aluminum bleachers inside the gym and at both ball fields, all of which are now connected by paved walkways meeting federal accessibility requirements. Also, a new roof was installed atop both the gym and annex building, the gym’s bathrooms were renovated and made to meet accessibly standards, the parking lot was paved, and a new parking area added to accommodate more park users.

GW Construction performed the work under a $1,032,376 contract financed with a combination of county bond proceeds and a federal community block grant. Construction started in January.

Much of the work exceeded contractual requirements, Mayor Kenoi said in publicly thanking the contractor. For example, instead of refurbishing the existing gymnasium roof, GW Construction replaced it for the cost of materials, while donating the labor.

GW Construction also joined Mayor Kenoi’s office and Councilman Yoshimoto’s office in providing refreshments for the re-dedication ceremony. “That’s from growing up in the area,” he said of owners Gerald and Wendy Yamada’s generosity.

Mayor Kenoi also praised the Parks Department’s recreational staff, community members and others who worked tirelessly to complete the improvements. “I’m just here to say thank you. Thank you to all the people who came together to make it happen,” he said.

Mayor Billy Kenoi joined the keiki of Waiākea Uka Park’s Summer Fun program for a photo on their first day of the program.

Mayor Kenoi also shared with the children in attendance the secrets to success.  “Don’t forget now guys,” the Mayor told them, “dream big, work hard, never give up, and treat everyone with aloha.”

 

Kamehameha Schools 125 Years – On Oceanic Cable, The Web and Instagram

Kamehameha Schools is 125 years old, and for the past few months, we’ve been sharing stories about KS people, programs, services, collaborators, and stewardship of the lands of our founder, Bernice Pauahi Bishop.

We’d love to have you join in the celebration by literally putting yourself in the picture … via your photos! Using the smartphone app Instagram, snap and upload a picture that you feel captures Kamehameha’s mission in action or depicts events taking place during the anniversary.

And be sure to include the #ks125 hashtag in your caption so your photo will be added to the 125th anniversary collection. And go to www.facebook.com/KamehamehaSchools for a link to the #ks125 Instagram photo gallery.

For example, you could include photos of you and your friends participating in King Kamehameha Day festivities, Alumni Week, or any of the various and many wonderful Kamehameha Schools activities happening now and through Founder’s Day, December 19. Happy photo sharing!

Be sure to check out our 125th anniversary story, told through television and radio commercials, print ads and videos! It’s all posted on Oceanic Time Warner Cable digital channel 918 and at www.ksbe.edu/125, a special-edition anniversary website.

Me ka mahalo nui, and enjoy the celebration!

 

Highly Contagious Honey Bee Virus Transmitted by Mites

Researchers in Hawaii and the UK report that the parasitic ‘Varroa’ mite has caused the Deformed Wing Virus (DWV) to proliferate in honey bee colonies. This association is now thought to contribute to the world-wide spread and probable death of millions of honey bee colonies. The current monetary value of honey bees as commercial pollinators in the United States alone is estimated at about $15-$20 billion annually.

Bees with varroa mite

The research conducted in Hawaii by researchers at Sheffield University, the Marine Biological Association, FERA and University of Hawaii, and reported in the journal Science (8 June 2012), showed how Varroa caused DWV – a known viral pathogen – to increase its frequency among honey bee colonies from 10% to 100%. This change was accompanied by a million-fold increase in the number of virus particles infecting each honey bee and a massive reduction in viral strain diversity leading to the emergence of a single ‘virulent’ DWV strain. As the mite and new virulent strain of virus becomes established across the Hawaiian islands the new emerging viral landscape will mirror that found across the rest of the world where Varroa is now established.

This ability of a mite to permanently alter the honey bee viral landscape may by a key factor in the recent colony collapse disorder (CCD) and over-wintering colony losses (OCL) as the virulent pathogen strain remains even after the mites are removed.

Honey bee populations can experience spectacular crashes. The most recent being the well publicized colony collapse disorder (CCD), but its cause remains a mystery.

Varroa is a large mite (~1.5mm x1mm) that lives on the surface of honeybees, feeding off their blood and reproducing on their developing brood.

The arrival and spread of Varroa across the Hawaiian Islands offered a unique opportunity during 2009 and 2010 to track the evolutionary change in the honey bee virus landscape.

The mite facilitates the spread of viruses by acting as a viral reservoir and incubator, although four bee viruses often associated with CCD (Kashmir bee, Slow paralysis, Acute bee paralysis and Israeli acute paralysis virus) were not influenced by Varroa in Hawaii.

One bee virus, the Deformed Wing Virus (DWV), has been implicated in colony losses, for example over wintering colony losses (OCL), as it appears to become ubiquitous wherever Varroa occurs.

DWV is naturally transmitted between bees via feeding or during mating. However, the mites introduce DWV directly into the bee’s blood while feeding so creating a new viral transmission route that bypasses many of the bees’ natural defensive barriers.

DWV is a tiny virus similar in structure to polio or foot and mouth virus and has only 9 genes.

DWV infected bees may display the classic wing deformity, but the vast majority of infected bees do not show any morphological signs of infection.

The dominant strain found on Oahu and now Big Island is identical to that found in other areas of the world indicating that the situation on Hawaii is a mirror to what has happened right across the globe.

Based on comparisons between the 2009 and 2010 the changes in viral diversity associated with Varroa appear stable and persist even after the parasite levels are reduced via mite treatments.

 

Big Island Student Finalist in “America the Beautiful” National Essay Contest

After receiving nearly 12,000 essays from 7th through 12th graders across the country, Rand McNally has announced the ten finalists in its “America the Beautiful” short essay contest. The ten finalists have been notified and will arrive in Washington, D.C. for a June 15 ceremony at which two Grand Prize winners will be named.

The ten finalists are:

  • Celina Aguilar, V. Sue Cleveland High School, Rio Rancho, NM
  • Sarah Dean, Hudsonville High School, Hudsonville, MI
  • Amy Deeb, Charles S. Rushe Middle School, Land O’Lakes, FL
  • Hannah Harley, Indiana Area Senior High School, Indiana, PA
  • Alexa Morales, South Miami Senior High School, Miami, FL
  • Kristen Mucha, Belleville High School, Belleville, NJ
  • Caitlin Shelby, North Forsyth Middle School, Cumming, GA
  • Justin Tso, Challenger School – Berryessa Campus, San Jose, CA
  • Will White, Hawaii Preparatory Academy, Kamuela, HI
  • Melanie Wilhelm, Linganore High School, Frederick, MD

The ten finalists and a parent or guest will travel to Washington, D.C. next week compliments of WorldStrides, the global leader in accredited educational travel programs. The finalists and the teachers who submitted the essays on the students’ behalf will receive a NOOK Tablet from NOOK by Barnes & Noble, one of the primary sponsors of the contest.

The ten finalists were selected from a group of 100 semi-finalists; the semi-finalists and their teachers also will each receive an award-winning Barnes & Noble NOOK Tablet(TM), and will have their essays published in the free e-book, “America the Beautiful” available exclusively on NOOK.com.

Launched in March, “America the Beautiful” asked this simple essay question: What’s the one place in the U.S. that truly inspires you? It could have been captured in a hometown or the special memories about a place visited, or even a meaningful landmark.

Essay contest entrants wrote about places ranging from Waimea, Hawaii to Chincoteague, Virginia, and thousands of points in between.

From the ten finalists, two Grand Prize winners will be selected and announced at the June 15 ceremony at the Air Force Memorial in Arlington, Virginia. The Grand Prize winners (one from 7-9th grade and one from 10-12th grade) will receive a $10,000 College 529 Savings Plan. The schools of the Grand Prize winners will receive $5,000 of classroom products from Rand McNally.

While in Washington, D.C. the ten finalists will experience an exclusive WorldStrides DiscoverNow! program. WorldStrides is the nation’s largest educational travel organization. Finalists will spend three days and two nights exploring the nation’s capital with the guidance of a WorldStrides-certified course leader. Highlights of the experience will include:

  • Witnessing the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns
  • Reciting Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and visiting the newly dedicated Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial
  • Experiencing life in the first “white house”, George Washington’s beloved Mt. Vernon
  • Seeing the government in action through a visit to the Supreme Court and the U.S. Capitol Building
  • Attending an official ceremony at the Air Force Memorial where the two Grand Prize winners of the contest will be announced.

More detailed information and complete contest rules for “America the Beautiful” are available at bestoftheroad.com/education. In addition to contest guidelines, the site also features lesson plans for educators, activity guides to assist student writers, and correlations to the Common Core State Standards. Check back at bestoftheroad.com/education for details on future programs.

“Nerds” vs. “Cheerleaders” – Saturday, June 23rd

Pull out your pocket protectors and grab your pompoms, it’s time to get fired up for the Paradise Roller Girls’ season opener and annual themed bout, “Nerds vs. Cheerleaders,” Saturday, June 23, at the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium in Hilo. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the action kicks off at 6:45 p.m. Don’t miss this chance to catch your favorite roller girls on the Big Island duke it out in the first bout of the year.

Tickets are available at www.paradiserollergirls.com or from your favorite derby girl. Other outlets include Mountain View Village Video, CD Wizard, Hilo Town Tavern, Jungle Love Pahoa and Jeff Hunt Surfboards in Pahoa and at the door the day of the event. Pre-sale ticket price is $8, $10 at the door. Selling out is anticipated so get your tickets early! Please, no strollers, coolers or beverage containers; concessions will be available inside.

Paradise Roller Girls is a women’s flat track roller derby league based out of Hilo, Hawaii. PRG membership is island-wide with teams in Kona, Waimea and Hilo. PRG is an Apprentice League of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA) and adheres to the association’s rules as well as has qualified referees in the league.

Sponsors include Surrounded By Blue, Ace Hardware, Coldwell Banker Day-Lum, WillKill Termites & Pests, Curly Pinky Designs and Britten Traughber Photography.

A portion of the proceeds from this event will benefit the Rainbow Friends Animal Sanctuary.

Come out and support your local roller derby, with action-packed entertainment, and family fun. For more information on PRG, recruitment information, or to volunteer, visit www.paradiserollergirls.com.

Public Informational Meeting Scheduled for Saddle Road Extension Project

The state Department of Transportation (DOT) has scheduled a public informational meeting to brief the community on the environmental impact statement (EIS) for the proposed Saddle Road Extension Project. The meeting will be held at the following location and time:

Thursday, June 14, 2012, 6 to 8 p.m., Waikoloa Elementary & Middle School, 68-1730 Ho‘oko Street, Waikoloa, HI 96738

The proposed project will extend Saddle Road from Mamalahoa Highway to Queen Kaahumanu Highway. The extension project will improve efficiency of traffic movement between East and West Hawaii, improve safety, and support the needs of commercial truck and military traffic.

The comment period for the EISPN/EA extends to June 22, 2012. Please send comments to Geometrician Associates, P.O. Box 396, Hilo, HI 96721, Attention: Ron Terry; with copies to the Hawaii Department of Transportation, 869 Punchbowl St., Room 301, Honolulu, HI 96813, Attention: Dean Yanagisawa.

For more information or to request language interpretation, an auxiliary aid or service (i.e., sign language interpreter, accessible parking, or materials in alternative format), please contact Lennie Okano-Kendrick, Okahara and Associates, at (808) 961-5527, three (3) days prior to the meeting date.

Man to Kayak from California to Hawaii

From the Coast of California to the Coast of Hawaii… by kayak.

It sounds impossible, unrealistic and downright dangerous, but one American Adventurer says it can be done. And he plans on proving it.

Wave Vidmar

Wave Vidmar will leave on his Kayak in two weeks for a journey that has only been pulled once before — twenty five years ago.

Wednesday, Vidmar came to Chemainus to pick up his one-of-a-kind kayak made by Vancouver Island’s Seaward Kayaks.   The company is known within the industry for making the toughest and most sophisticated kayaks in the world. Wave’s kayak will be equipped with solar panels that will generate enough power for a computer and camera.

The journey will take Wave roughly 50 days to complete and will see the American travel over 3000 nautical miles.

Many outdoor adventurers say this trip is equivalent to climbing Mount Everest without Oxygen.

[youtube=http://youtu.be/mDopaDI7U3c]

Wave Vidmar leaves from the Monterey Peninsula later this month.