Update on the Hawaii County Elections – Absentee Ballots Being Counted


104,323 Hawaii County residents are registered to vote in the 2012 General Election. This is the official voter registration count for the 2012 General Election and is not subject to change for this election.


On October 15th 22,200 absentee mail ballots were sent to Hawaii County voters. Between October 15th and October 24th roughly 460 new requests for absentee mail ballots were received by Hawaii County.  The new requests are processed and absentee mail ballots are sent to Hawaii County voters on a daily basis.

As of October 24th, Hawaii County has received 8,341 voted absentee mail ballots.


On October 23rd, Hawaii County opened absentee/early walk-in voting precincts in Hilo, Waimea and in Kona.  Absentee/early walk-in voting is open to all registered voters at any early walk-in voting precinct on the island, regardless of district or residency assignment.  Absentee/early walk-in voting will continue until November 3, 2012.

As of October 24th, 1,703 Hawaii County voters have voted absentee/early walk-in voting in Hawaii County.

According to Lehua Iopa, Hawaii County Acting Elections Program Administrator, “We want to thank all Hawaii County residents who have registered to vote and who are voting in the General Election.  Absentee voting by mail and by early walk-in voting is going smoothly.  We encourage all Hawaii County voters to consider all of their voting choices and to vote by mail, walk-in early voting at any precinct location on the island in Hilo, Waimea and in Kona, or on Election Day, November 6, 2012 at their designated polling place.”

For more information please contact Lehua Iopa, Acting Elections Program Administrator, Hawaii County Elections Division (808) 961-8277 or by electronic mail to eiopa@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Hawaii County Elections 2012 Kids Art & Essay Contest Now Open for Submissions

The Hawaii County Elections Division is seeking kids’ art and essays – lots of it!

We hope to encourage students and educators to learn about and get interested in elections.  Art and essays may be turned into legislative branch offices in Hilo , Waimea, Kona and Pahoa.  Essays may also be e-mailed to our offices to jbennett@co.hawaii.hi.us.

The Art contest is for kids ages 8-10.  Design the voting machine of the future!  Artwork should be about the voting machine that can be used to cast votes in the election of the future.   We are looking for drawings, paintings, sculpture, collage, mixed media, all formats are welcome.  An overall winner will be chosen from all of the entries.  Deadline for submission is November 5, 2012 at 4:30 p.m.  Winners will be announced on November 11, 2012.

The Essay contest is for kids ages 11-13.  In 800 words or less, each student should use their imagination and write about what they would accomplish if they were a candidate for the Hawaii County Council and elected to a two-year term to the Hawaii County Council on November 6, 2012 (General Election).  An overall winner will be chosen from all of the entries.  Deadline for submission is November 5, 2012 at 4:30 p.m.  Winners will be announced on November 11, 2012.

All submissions must be submitted with the name and age of the participant and the parent/legal guardian’s name, mailing address, electronic mail address and telephone number.

For more information please contact Judy Bennett, Temporary Elections Clerk, Hawaii County Elections Division (808) 961-8277 or by electronic mail to jbennett@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Pahoa Holiday Parade Scheduled for Saturday December 1st

The 22nd Annual Pahoa Holiday Parade will begin at 9:30 am on Saturday, December 1, 2012 in downtown Pahoa.  Santa will be handing out goodie bags for all of the children who are here to enjoy parade beside the mile long route.

Santa at the 2011 Pahoa Parade

The Holiday Parade begins outside of downtown and ends at Pahoa High and Intermediate School for a “Ho’olaulea” featuring food and more entertainment.

Entries will be accepted up to Wednesday, November 28th and applications are available from Shawn Heard at Puna Style, 965-7592 or Madie Greene at Puna Buy and Sell, 965-7296.

Don’t miss all of the fun – join us in Pahoa at 9:30 am on Saturday, Dec. 1st.

Contact Person: Shawn Heard @ Puna Style 965-7592  (Mon – Thurs)

Big Island Police Arrest Hilo Woman For Driving Stolen Vehicle

Police have charged a 28-year-old Hilo woman for allegedly driving a stolen vehicle.

Sasha Leinani Shelly Soares

Sasha Leinani Shelly Soares was arrested in Nanawale Estates in Puna on Sunday (October 21) after she was seen operating a Jeep Wrangler that was reported stolen during a burglary in Kailua-Kona on October 17.

After conferring with prosecutors, detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section charged Soares at 4:35 p.m. Tuesday with one count of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle. Her bail was set at $10,000.

EPA Reaches Agreement With the County of Maui for Air Pollution Issues at Landfill

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that the County of Maui has agreed to a settlement to resolve alleged violations of air pollution laws at Central Maui Landfill in Puunene.

The settlement requires the County to implement enhanced gas monitoring to help reduce the threat of underground fires at the landfill and to follow fire response procedures in the event of a fire. Additionally, the County will be building a renewable energy wind farm to reduce fossil fuel power plant emissions near the landfill. The County will also pay a civil penalty of $380,000.

“Today’s settlement is good news for the families living in Kahului,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “Achieving compliance with the Clean Air Act and reducing emissions at a landfill and the power plant, while supporting renewable energy, is a win-win.”

The County estimates that it has spent about $4.5 million to design and construct a gas collection and control system required by the Clean Air Act at the landfill. Federal law requires large landfills to install and operate systems to collect gases generated by decomposing refuse, such as air toxics, organic compounds, and methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Effective gas controls at the landfill reduces the release of these gases, preventing them from escaping into the atmosphere.

Maui will also benefit by the reduction of power plant emissions as a result of the wind turbine project. The County is responsible for the installation of at least eight wind turbines collectively capable of generating approximately 55,000 kilowatt hours per year which could supply up to 38 percent of the Landfill’s power needs. The wind turbines and installation are estimated to cost at least $250,000. In addition to reducing emissions from power generated by fossil fuels, the project is aligned with sustainability goals of the County and the State of Hawaii.

The settlement resolves allegations that the County violated the Clean Air Act by failing to design, construct and operate a gas collection/control system, apply for a permit from the Hawaii Department of Health, prepare a startup, shutdown and malfunction plan, and operate controls within the gas temperature limit.

The consent decree, lodged in the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii, is subject to a 30-day public comment period and court approval and may be viewed at www.justice.gov/enrd/Consent_Decrees.html.

For more information about CAA landfill regulations, please visit the EPA’s web site at: http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/landfill/landflpg.html#IMP.

Dedication Ceremony Set For Northrop F-5A Freedom Fighter

Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor will dedicate its Northrop F-5A Freedom Fighter on Monday, November 12, 2012.  The 4:00 p.m. dedication ceremony will take place at the Museum on Historic Ford Island. This invitation-only event is open to the media. A reception will follow from 5 to 7:30pm.

The Northrop F-5A was a lightweight, low maintenance, single-seat fighter designed and built by Northrop in the 1950s. Although it never became a fighter aircraft for the U.S., Northrop exported hundreds of F-5As around the world during the 1960s and 1970s to U.S. allies.

The Museum’s F-5A Freedom Fighter was donated by Chuck Thornton, president of Thornton Aircraft Company. It joins the Museum’s growing collection of 35+ historic aircraft. Shipping was provided by Matson. The dedication ceremony is sponsored by Northrop Grumann.

The pilot name on the fuselage of the aircraft will be General Kim Doo Man and the Museum selected the markings for this aircraft to be that of the United States ally, the Republic of Korea Air Force.

Attendees of the ceremony will include Korean War veterans, business and civic leaders, U.S. military leaders, as well as Republic of Korea Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Lt. General Cha Kyu Choi and his wife.

The Museum is located at 391 Lexington Boulevard on Ford Island. Guest access to Ford Island for this event may be obtained by contacting Loretta Fung at 808-441-1008 or Loretta.Fung@PacificAviationMuseum.org by November 6, 2012.

Pacific Aviation Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Its mission is to develop and maintain an internationally recognized aviation museum on historic Ford Island that educates young and old alike, honors aviators and their support personnel who defended freedom in The Pacific Region, and preserves Pacific aviation history.

Community Messages From the Big Island Police Department


The Hawaiʻi Police Department held an information booth on Home Security and Property Inventory, in conjunction with the Waiakea Intermediate School Pumpkin Patch Event On Saturday (October 20).

Officer Bryan Tina speaks to a 2nd grader about home security and safety.

Community members enjoyed the day at Waiakea Intermediate School and spent a few minutes at the booth to learn about how to better secure their homes and how to properly inventory property should they become victims of a crime. This was part of the department’s continuous effort to improve the community’s awareness of burglary prevention strategies.


The Hawaiʻi Police Activities League (HI-PAL), along with Hawaiʻi Island Hoops, will hold monthly clinics for agility, conditioning and skills at the Panaʻewa covered facility beginning Friday (October 26) from 4-6:30 p.m. Registration will begin at 4 p.m.

Additional dates for the clinic will be announced later.

Andy Smith, director of Hawaiʻi Island Hoops and former University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo basketball standout, founded Hawaiʻi Island Hoops in 2004 in an effort to provide local student-athletes with outlets to help them achieve their goals of higher education and playing on the next level.

Hawaiʻi Island Hoops and HI-PAL are helping to build strong communities through sports and education.

For more information, call Officer Joseph Botelho Jr at 961-2220 or Matt Kaʻaihue, a Panaʻewa community volunteer, at 961-6270.


Young children squealed with delight as costume characters mingled among them during a breakfast presentation Wednesday by Community Policing officers at Hilo Union Elementary School.

The “Character Breakfast” was the second in a series planned to both entertain and educate keiki. McGruff the Crime Dog and D.A.R.E. mascot Daren the Lion are the closest some of these kids will get to Disney-style characters, and their presence Wednesday morning attracted more than the typical numbers of students who eat breakfast at the school before the start of classes.

During the presentation, HI-PAL Officer Joseph Botelho Jr. offered tips about Halloween safety. Other Community Policing officers passed out traffic safety stickers.

Elementary schools interested in having a “Character Breakfast” on their campus are encouraged to call School Resource Officer Nelson Acob at 961-8121.

Wordless Wednesday – The End of Time… The Movie

Working at the limits of what can easily be expressed, filmmaker Peter Mettler takes on the elusive subject of time, and once again turns his camera to filming the unfilmmable.

From the particle accelerator in Switzerland, where scientists seek to probe regions of time we cannot see, to lava flows in Hawaii which have overwhelmed all but one home on the south side of Big Island; from the disintegration of inner city Detroit, to a Hindu funeral rite near the place of Buddha’s enlightenment, Mettler explores our perception of time. He dares to dream the movie of the future while also immersing us in the wonder of the everyday.

THE END OF TIME, at once personal, rigorous and visionary, Peter Mettler has crafted a film as compelling and magnificent as its subject.