2014 RIMPAC Exercises Begin – Bloggers Invited Previously

Well the ships are coming in for the 2014 RIMPAC Exercises.  I don’t have a sponsorship with Go!Airlines anymore, so if I do get selected to go on some embarks… I’ll have to be selective about the ones I get chosen for as I know I’ll be paying my own flights this time!

Here are some of the previous embarks and adventures I have gone on in the past.

I always try to get something to remember my embarks from!

I always try to get something to remember my embarks from!

Commentary – League of Women Voters on Passage of Same-Day Voter Registration Bill

The League of Women Voters-Hawaii applauds the passage of HB 2590, Relating to Elections, known as the same-day voter registration bill, which was signed into law by Governor Neil Abercrombie today.

HB2590HB 2590 permits voter registration at absentee walk-in voting centers in 2016, and voter registration on Election Day at local precinct polling sites in 2018. These changes will make it more convenient to register to vote in Hawaii.

“Governor Abercrombie and the 2014 Legislature are to be congratulated for making voting in Hawaii more accessible to our citizens. By this action, voters in Hawaii will be able to go to the polls in increasing numbers, thus changing the pattern of low voter turnout of recent years,” stated League President Ann Shaver. “Experience has shown that same-day voter registration is also effective in getting younger voters to the polls.”

The League of Women Voters Hawaii has spent more than a decade fighting to improve voter turnout through same-day voter registration. Members have testified, lobbied legislators, and worked to educate the public about the importance of same-day voter registration in increasing voter turnout. The League worked for successful passage of HB 2590 in close collaboration with other civic groups, such as Common Cause Hawaii, and the bill’s primary sponsor, Representative Kaniela Ing.

“Representative Ing’s leadership on this issue was key to the bill’s passage, and we are pleased that we had such a strong ally in the struggle to make voter registration more accessible in our state,” said Shaver.

Several states already permit same-day voter registration, including Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, Wisconsin and Wyoming, as well as the District of Columbia.

Mokulele Airlines Announces Grand Opening Celebration For Kalaeloa Airport – Adds Flights

Mokulele Airlines has announced that it will host a grand opening celebration on July 1 at the airline’s newest service location, Kalaeloa Airport on west Oahu, marking the successful conclusion of a year of preparations. Kalaeloa is located at the former Barber’s Point Naval Air Base John Rogers Field, and the grand opening and inaugural flight will take place 15 years to the day that the former base was closed and turned over to the State of Hawaii.

mokulelejet

The celebration, which is open to the public, will begin with a facility tour and entertainment by Kainani & Friends. Jenn Boneza, TV personality for Oceanic Cable 16 and Hawaii Five-0 actress will serve as the Mistress of Ceremonies.  Ron Hansen, president & CEO of Mokulele Airlines will welcome guests and special guest speakers will include Evelyn Souza, Chairperson of Neighborhood Board #24; Senator Mike Gabbard, Representative Karen Awana, Ross Higashi Deputy Director Airports Hawaii DOT,  and Shan S. Tsutsui, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Hawaii. Dignitaries from the Hawaii Department of Transportation will also be in attendance and Kahu Daniel “Kaniela” Akaka, Jr. will offer a traditional Hawaiian blessing of the airport and the plane that will make the inaugural flight.

July 1 will mark the beginning of Mokulele’s daily nonstop service to Kahului, Maui from Kalaeloa, with six scheduled daily flights, three each way. The inaugural flight to Kahului will depart at 1:00 pm. After the plane departs, closing remarks will be offered by Mokulele’s executive vice president and COO Dave Berry and a reception will follow with entertainment by award-winning slack key master Kawika Kahiapo and refreshments provided by Chef Paul Onishi, of the Culinary Art Academy and Young Life Oahu High School Students.

Kalaeloa will be the ninth airport Mokulele serves. As with most of the other airports Mokulele operates from, parking is hassle-free and TSA screenings are not required. Travelers will also save time by eliminating the need to drive to and from Honolulu on the H1. Mokulele is offering a special introductory webfare of $99 roundtrip including taxes and fees for the new Kalaeloa-Kahului route for reservations booked through July 31th for travel through August 30.

Mokulele Airlines said it has announced the expansion of its service between Kamuela-Waimea on the Big Island and Kahului, Maui by adding a third daily roundtrip flight to meet growing demand.

Mokulele began offering service form Kamuela in September 2013 after being awarded the Essential Air Service (EAS) contract from the Hawaii Department of Transportation. EAS is a government program designed to help ensure that smaller communities have access to commercial air service.

Mokulele will now offer 42 weekly flights between the two destinations, only 24 of which are subsidized by the EAS program.

More information is available at www.mokuleleairlines.com.

Hazmat Company Responds to Foamy White Substance Near Coconut Island

The Hawaii County Fire Department responded to patches of a foamy white substance on the shoreline and in the water fronting Coconut Island today on the Big Island.

Coconut Island

Coconut Island

Samples of white substance and air, in the area, tests by Hazmat Company 4 resulted with negative results of any type hazardous material in the area.

Per Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) personnel, the white substance is Algae bloom. No actions need to be taken.

Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament Seeking Volunteers

The Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is looking for volunteers to help with the running of the 55th Annual tournament. A variety of tournament support is needed, including Kailua pier operations, HIBT retail boutique, headquarter administration, security and a whole lot more. Positions will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Each volunteer will receive a HIBT t-shirt and discounted parking for shift volunteers in return for their time.

Miss Billfish 2013

Miss Billfish 2013

“We are excited to meet new volunteers and welcome back those who help us each summer. Volunteers play an important role in the HIBT and help us provide great service to the anglers, crews and visitors that come from around the world to this prestigious fishing tournament,” said HIBT Founder Peter Fithian. “Each year we all work hard, have a good time, at the end of the five days of tournament fishing, bid a fond aloha to all those who travel here to Kona to fish these famous waters.”

Fishing Club of Australia at last years HIBT.

Fishing Club of Australia at last years HIBT.

HIBT event headquarters, retail and tournament control will once again be anchored at Courtyard Marriott King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, located adjacent to Kailua Pier. Tournament volunteers are needed starting Monday, July 21 and through Sunday, August 3, 2014.

To volunteer please email hibt@hawaii.rr.com

The Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament is underwritten by the generosity of the County of Hawaii Department of Research and Development.  For more tournament information, log onto  www.hibtfishing.com

Big Island Police Investigating Stun Guns Recovered From Maku’u Farmers Market

Hawaiʻi Island police recovered two electronic stun devices from a vendor at the Makuʻu Farmers Market on Sunday morning (June 29) and have initiated a criminal investigation into violations of laws specific to electric guns, possession and sale.

HPDBadgeDevices that were recovered had the appearance of a cellular phone. Police received additional information that other devices previously displayed had the appearance of a Maglight type flashlight.

Police remind the public that the possession, sale, gift or delivery of electric guns/devices is illegal under section 134-16 of the Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes and is a misdemeanor offense. The definition of an “electric gun” means any portable device that is electrically operated to project a missile or electromotive force. Persons who may have purchased such a device are advised to destroy the item or turn it in to the nearest police station for recovery and destruction.

Use of an electronic gun on another person (by anyone other than a law enforcement officer in the lawful course of duties) would fall under the assault section of the Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes.

Police ask anyone with information about other vendors selling similar devices to report this to the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Proportion of People Living In Poverty in Hawaii Declines

One in four U.S. residents live in “poverty areas,” according to American Community Survey data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau from 2008 to 2012, up from less than one in five in 2000. These areas of concentrated poverty refer to any census tract with a poverty rate of 20 percent of more. The number of people living in poverty areas increased from 49.5 million (18.0 percent) in 2000 to 77.4 million (25.7 percent) in 2008-2012. The 2012 American Community Survey five-year estimates show a U.S. poverty rate of 14.9 percent.

Click to read full report

Click to read full report

While for most areas the percent of people living in poverty areas increased, some parts of the country moved in the opposite direction of the nation’s 7.6 percentage points increase. In Louisiana (-3.6 percentage points), West Virginia (-2.3), Alaska (-0.4), Hawaii (-1.0) and the District of Columbia (-6.7), the proportion of people living in poverty areas declined over the period. On the other hand, Arkansas (15.7 percentage points), North Carolina (17.9), Oregon (16.0) and Tennessee (16.0) had among the largest percentage point increases in the proportion of people living in poverty areas.

By state, according to the 2008-2012 figures, the percentage of people living in a poverty area ranged from 6.8 percent in New Hampshire to 48.5 percent in Mississippi.

Page 3 of report

Page 3 of report

The report, Changes in Areas with Concentrated Poverty: 2000 to 2010, uses data from the 2000 Census and the American Community Survey to analyze changes in the spatial distribution and socio-economic characteristics of people living in such areas. More than half of people living in poverty lived in a poverty area, and about 30 percent of people living in poverty areas had incomes below the poverty level.

“Researchers have found that living in poor neighborhoods adds burdens to low-income families, such as poor housing conditions and fewer job opportunities,” said the report’s author, Alemayehu Bishaw of the Census Bureau’s Poverty Statistics Branch. “Many federal and local government agencies use the Census Bureau’s definition of poverty areas to provide much-needed resources to communities with a large concentration of people in poverty.”

Other highlights:

  • In the 2008-2012 period, in 14 states and the District of Columbia, 30 percent or more of the population lived in poverty areas. In 2000, this was true of four states and the District of Columbia.
  • Of the people living in poverty areas in the 2008-2012 period, 51.1 percent lived in central cities of metro areas, 28.6 percent in suburbs and 20.4 percent outside metro areas. (In the report, the term “suburbs” refers to areas that are inside metropolitan statistical areas but outside the central or principal cities.)
  • Many of the counties with 80 percent or more of the population living in poverty areas were clustered in and around American Indian reservations (in New Mexico, Arizona, South Dakota and North Dakota) or in the Mississippi delta region (which includes portions of Mississippi, Louisiana and Arkansas).
  • About 38 percent of all families headed by a female householder with no husband present lived in a poverty area, the largest proportion among all family types.
  • Blacks, American Indians and Alaska Natives, and those in the “some other race” category were the race groups most likely to live in poverty areas, at 50.4 percent, 47.8 percent and 48.3 percent, respectively. Whites, however, experienced the largest percentage point increase in the proportion living in poverty areas over the 2000 to 2008-2012 period. The percent of whites living in poverty areas increased from 11.3 percent in 2000 to 20.3 percent in 2008-2012.
  • Employed people saw a larger increase in the percentage of people living in poverty areas than the unemployed over this period — 8.0 percentage points versus 3.4 percentage points.

About the American Community Survey

The American Community Survey provides a wide range of important statistics about all communities in the country. The American Community Survey gives communities the current information they need to plan investments and services. Retailers, homebuilders, police departments, and town and city planners are among the many private- and public-sector decision makers who count on these annual results.

Ever since Thomas Jefferson directed the first census in 1790, the census has collected detailed characteristics about our nation’s people. Questions about jobs and the economy were added 20 years later under James Madison, who said such information would allow Congress to “adapt the public measures to the particular circumstances of the community,” and over the decades allow America “an opportunity of marking the progress of the society.”

Statement By Admiral Harry Harris Jr., On Opening of RIMPAC

Aloha! Welcome everyone to the Rim of the Pacific exercise. It’s a great day to look across Pearl Harbor and see so many international ships berthed here for RIMPAC 2014. I want to personally welcome every Sailor, Marine, Airman, Soldier and Coastguardsman from all 22 participating nations and from the six observer nations – not only here in Hawaii, but also to the joint forces operating together in Southern California. You may not realize this, but the Southern California RIMPAC phase includes more than 1,000 personnel and seven ships from nine countries.

RIMPAC Line Up

As the world’s largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps our armed forces increase transparency and foster the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring security on the world’s oceans. Everyone standing here with me today recognizes how valuable a cooperative approach can be to sharing the workload and leveraging unique national capabilities.

Today, maritime cooperation is more vital than ever before. For centuries, the world’s oceans kept us apart, but in this increasingly globalized world, they are the pathways that bring us together.

Freedom of the seas is the minimum condition necessary for global prosperity and trade to flourish. This applies to the United States, a maritime nation and a Pacific nation, and it applies to each of the countries participating in RIMPAC.

As the world’s economic center of gravity shifts rapidly toward the Indo-Asia-Pacific, we also note the increasing risks in the region – some man-made, some natural – but all capable of disrupting stability and impacting our collective prosperity. We can all appreciate that conflict and crisis are bad for business. I think it’s important to note that by simply attending RIMPAC, every nation here is making the bold statement that we must improve multinational military cooperation despite disagreements. We can agree to disagree without being disagreeable.

Capable maritime forces enhance stability, security, prosperity and peace around the world, especially in an ocean as vast as the Pacific. The 22 nations who sent forces to RIMPAC have interests in the Pacific, and they know that this exercise will help them improve their capability to operate with each other and contribute to multilateral efforts when needed.

Mutual trust and open lines of communication are critical, but are very challenging to build. That’s why multilateral exercises like RIMPAC are so important. It helps us work together effectively in real world events like the recent search for Malaysia Airliner MH370, or in responding to the devastating typhoon that hit our friends in the Philippines last November. Friends help friends, and often, the fastest response to crisis comes from the sea.

Capable maritime forces matter to all nations.

And they matter to the United States, which is conducting a whole-of-government strategic rebalance to the Pacific. The rebalance is based on a strategy of cooperation and collaboration, and that’s why it is imperative that we work together to build trust and confidence to solve our collective maritime challenges. When great nations work together, we can accomplish great things.

Collaboration and cooperation, that’s why we are here to learn together, operate together and sail together.

There are three great ships that sail on the high seas – friendship, partnership and leadership – all three are exemplified at RIMPAC. Great leadership is also something I get every day from our U.S. Third Fleet commander, Vice Adm. Kenny Floyd, who will serve as the Combined Task Force commander during this exercise.

Adm. Harris is commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet.

Kailua Village 4th of July – Natural Vibrations, Parade and Fireworks

Kona Concert

Big Island Police Investigating Puna Shooting

Hawaiʻi Island police are investigating a reported shooting over the weekend in the Puna District.
Eden RocAt about 11:07 a.m. Saturday (June 28), police received a call of an in-progress threat incident in the Eden Roc subdivision in Mountain View involving a man brandishing a machete.

Responding officers arriving on 6th Street discovered the 30-year-old male victim with apparent gunshot wounds after he stopped his tow truck to inform police what happened. The victim was taken to Hilo Medical Center in serious condition and has since been released. He was subsequently arrested for unrelated warrants and remains in the police cellblock.

Detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section are continuing the investigation, which is classified as a second-degree attempted murder.

Detectives do not have a suspect in custody but are looking for a local male known as “Dennis,” who is described as between 40 and 50 years old, with short salt-and-pepper hair and a mustache. He was last seen wearing jeans shorts.

Police ask that anyone with information about this incident or anyone who may have witnessed it contact Detective Dean Uyetake at 961-2379 or deuyetake@co.hawaii.hi.us or Detective John Rodrigues Jr. at 961-8222 or jrodrigues@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Big Island Police Searching for Missing Pepe’ekeo Man

Hawaiʻi Island police are asking for the public’s help in locating a 24-year-old Pepeʻekeo man reported missing Sunday (June 29).

Leigh Alafanso aka (Jason Rich)

Leigh Alafanso aka (Jason Rich)

Leigh Alafanso also goes by the name Jason Rich. He is described as 5-foot-6, 150 pounds with brown eyes, long black hair and a mustache.

He is also wanted on a bench warrant for contempt of court.

He was last seen wearing a white baseball cap, a white t-shirt, yellow basketball shorts and black slippers.

Police ask anyone with information on his whereabouts to call Officer Keith Simeona at 961-2213 or the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Complete List of Society of Professional Journalists Hawaii Chapter Awards

Here is the full list of the 2013 winners and finalists of the Hawaii Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists that were recognized Friday evening at the Manoa Grand Ballroom of the Japanese Culture Center over on Oahu.

Hawaii SPJ

The ceremony and banquet was emceed by Keoki Kerr and Robbie Dingeman.  The Colorado Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists judged the 2013 contest.

Every entrant had to pay $25.00 per category to have their entry judged.

ALL MEDIA

Column Writing or Blog/News

First Place – “Board Talk,” Teresa Dawson, Environment Hawai’i

Comments: “Exhaustive reporting clearly presented. sometimes excessive length, but comprehensive. Good public service reporting/writing.”

Finalists

“Patti Epler columns,” Patti Epler, Civil Beat

Comments: “Ms. Epler de-mystifies journalism for readers, writes about important topics like access to open records and strong shield laws. ”

“The State of Aloha,” Ben Lowenthal, Maui News

Comments: “Nice use of historical perspective. Clear writing style.”

Column Writing or Blog/Features or Sports— First Place:

“Sharing Mana’o,” Kathy Collins, Maui News

Finalists:

“Afterthoughts,” Michael Keany, Honolulu Magazine

“My Job: Greens Coordinator for Films, Jewelry Takes Her Underwater, ‘Eyes and Ears’ of the Store, Caring for Kahoolawe, Family Tradition of Feather Work,” Stacy Yuen, Catherine Toth, Paula Rath, Lehia Apana, Lee Ann Bowman – Hawaii Business

Overall comment: “This category has a broad variety of entries. I think the “”Modern Cowboys”” video might fit better in another place. Very strong column-writing entries. It was tough to decide between No. 1 and No. 2!”

Government Reporting

First Place -“Hawaii Prison Problems,” Keoki Kerr, Hawaii News Now

Comments: “Terrific series of reports, eye openers.”

Finalists

“The Agribusiness Development Corporation,” Teresa Dawson, Environment Hawai’i

Comments: “Impressive continuing coverage of a government body wielding a lot of money but with little oversight and media scrutiny. Great job.”

“Hawaii’s Public Records,” Nathan Eagle, Nick Grube – Civil Beat

Comments: “Great stuff. Journalists need to explain in laymen’s terms to readers about public records, and this package does a terrific and compelling job.”

Breaking News Reporting

First Place – “Tropical Storm Flossie,” Melissa Tanji, Eileen Chao, Chris Sugidono, Lila Fujimoto – Maui News

Comments: “Comprehensive deadline coverage of a storm, its impact on services, infrastructure, personal stories and emergency preparedness information for readers. Well done.”

Finalists

“Plane makes emergency landing,” Chris Sugidono, Brian Perry, Lee Imada – Maui News

Comments: “Excellent footwork in getting to the crash site, sticking with pursuit of survivors and capturing the aircraft’s final plunge into the ocean.”

“Shark attack,” Chris Sugidono, Melissa Tanji – Maui News

Comments: “Diligent pursuit of a rare rash of shark attacks and in getting firsthand accounts from a tourist’s rescuers.”

Health Reporting

First Place – “The Doctor Is Out, June 2013,” David Thompson, Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “A comprehensive and highly readable story about an issue with high public impact. The author explains well the reasons for critical doctor shortages, potential solutions and programs in play.”

Finalists

“Dis Enabled,” Rylan Suehisa, Hawaii Business

“Transformation at Rehab Hospital,” Stacy Yuen, Hawaii Business

Sports Reporting

First Place – “Go Bows–Will We Ever Win Again? September 2013,” David Thompson, Lance Tominaga, Dave Choo – Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “This was a great read, a thorough look at the athletic director’s efforts to improve a struggling program. The example of the replacement of the light bulbs was classic.”

Finalists

“Camacho conquers Kaiwi Channel,” J.R. De Groote, West Hawaii Today

Comments: Hats off to the writer for an in-depth look at the swimmer’s accomplishment — especially after very painful jellyfish stings.

“Farmers facing shortfall,” Robert Collias, Maui News

Comments: “The school sports teams on these islands face unique travel problems, and the writer did a great job telling us about them. ”

Arts/Entertainment Writing

First Place – “Na Kumu,” Maureen O’Connell, HAWAI‘I Magazine

Comments: “Wonderful work, fine tributes to artisans who deserve the media coverage. Great photos too. Elegant piece!”

Finalists

“Hula Lives: Fifty Years of Renaissance and Revival through the Merrie Monarch Festival,” Jade Eckardt, Ke‘opulaulani Reelitz – Mana Magazine

Comments: “Page design and photos strengthen this submission, which starts with solid writing.”

“The Extra, May 2013,” David Thompson, Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “Very nice story about one man’s dreams and his willingness to wait for his big break.”

Editorial Opinion

First Place – “After tough start, Rosenthal enters golden chapter of his life,” Walter Chihara, Lahaina News

Comments: “A simple but compelling account, plainly and powerfully expressed.”

Finalist

“History Repeated,” Ke‘oplaulani Reelitz, Mana Magazine

Editorial Cartoon/Illustration

First Place – “Favorite Perks,” Jon Murakami, Hawaii Business

Comments: “An amusing presentation that enlivens a familiar business ranking. Lots of content in a compact space.”

Finalists

“He Mana Ko Ka Leo,” Jessica Kamaka‘aina Siepp, Mana Magazine

Comments: “Haunting and well executed, complemented by clever page layout.”

“I Feel So Much Safer Now,” John Pritchett, Civil Beat

Informational Graphic

First Place – “Quality of Life”,” Kristin Lipman, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Pie charts, bar graphs, graphic tid-bits and color visuals that impart a lot of information.Graphics blend with the stories nicely to complete incredibly comprehensive package.”

Finalists

“Balancing Act,” Jen Tadaki Catanzariti, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Clean way to present a lot of info in an easy-to-digest fashion.”

“The Poop Scoop: What happens after you flush,” Vincent Meadows, Molokai Dispatch

Comments: “Colorful ‘Flow’ chart tells the story visually.”

News Photography/Videography

First Place – “Heavy rains ran like rivers,” Matthew Thayer, Maui News

Comments: “Life and death in the balance. It doesn’t get more newsworthy than this well-composed, dramatic photograph.”

Finalists

“10 years in fatal crash,” John Burnett, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Human tragedy and remorse compel viewers to lock onto this excellent photograph of a sentencing and to read the story behind it.”

“Same Sex Marriage Special Session – Jubilation,” PF Bentley, Civil Beat

Comments: “Foreground and background merge into one powerful photograph capturing one powerful issue in the news.”

Feature Photography/Videography

First Place – “One Last Look: Volcano,” Grant Kaye, HAWAI‘I Magazine

Comments: “Everything works in this photo of the continuing creation of the Earth: beauty, disfigurement, power, light and dark, detail, shape, form, tones, and ultimately, transformation.”

Finalists

“Hawaiian Language Immersion Program – Student with Book,” PF Bentley, Civil Beat

Comments: “The composition and great use of depth of field bring this simple photo into powerful three-dimensional life and visual immersion.”

“Fleetwood And Company,” Matthew Thayer, Maui News

Comments: “Lighting, composition, mood, depth of field and low noise make this a concert photo deserving of special recognition.”

Sports Photography/Videography

First Place – “Va’a Va’a Va’a Voom!” Kunio Hayashi, Sonny Ganaden, Elyse Butler, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee, Hana Hou!

Comments: “A striking composition with all the elements of a first-rate sports photo: action, people, dramatic lighting and rich warm tones.”

Finalists

“Lawai‘a,” Sterling Kaya, Mana Magazine

Comments: “A compelling photo in terms of angle, composition, tones and detail.”

“Safe Under The Tag,” Matthew Thayer        , Maui News

Comments: “Exactly what a good baseball photo should be: dramatic and human.”

Photo/Video Essay

First Place – “Women of the Water,” Johann Meya, Janelle Kalawe, Mary Alice Ka‘iulani Milham – Mana Magazine

Comments: “A great story told exceptionally well in high quality, compelling images.”

Finalists

“Hele on to Hamakua,” David Croxford, HAWAI’I Magazine

Comments: “A large variety of excellent images tell the story of an entire region.”

“Hooverball hits Hawaii,” Christine Cabalo, Hawaii Marine

Comments: “The slides deftly edited into a video and the accompanying narration bring visual life and interest to an unusual but entertaining topic.”

Headlines

First Place – “Va’a Va’a Va’a Voom!” Kunio Hayashi, Sonny Ganaden, Elyse Butler, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee—Hana Hou!

Comments: “Excellent play on Va’a, canoe, and the topic: Speed.”

Finalists

“I Want Candy”/“The Daytrippers”/“Get Baked”/“Big Shrimpin”/“Dry Idea,” Derek Paiva, HAWAI’I Magazine

Comments: “The Daytrippers”: Perfect headline for a travel story written for locals and visitors with only hours to spare.”

“Prime Example; A Spoonful of Noni; Lost in Translation; Morning Board Meeting; Hawaiian Enough,” Ke‘opulaulani Reelitz, Janelle Kalawe, Malia Ka‘aihue, Mana Magazine

Comments: “ ‘Lost in Translation’: Captures the controversy over a language immersion program, the goals behind testing, and the students themselves.”

Best Reporting Using Social Media

First Place – “Lucky We Live Hawaii: What Hawaii Can Teach Us About Seizing The Day,” Chloe Fox, HuffPost Hawaii

Comments: “Enjoyable way to cover the beauty of Hawaii, though I was left wondering: why only six photos?”

Special Section

First Place – “Quality of Life,” Steve Petranik, Stacy Yuen, Beverly Creamer, Kristin Lipman—Hawaii Business

Comments: “Stunning use of graphics, photos and well reported stories to create an outstanding public service package.”

Finalists

“Merrie Monarch Festival 50th anniversary,” Staff, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Wow. This package is very well designed and obviously comprehensive. While outsiders might not fully understand, they would after reading this special section. It’s the ‘spirit and the culture of the Hawaiian people.’”

“Accountable for Results,” Dennis Hollier, Stacy Yuen, Beverly Creamer—Hawaii Business

Comments: “The writing is descriptive: ‘bloated, inefficient and sometimes corrupt …’ Incredibly comprehensive report. Well-researched and clearly written.”

Investigative Reporting

First Place – “Living Hawaii: Why Is the Price of Paradise So High?” Kery Murakami, Nathan Eagle, Adrienne LaFrance— Civil Beat

Comments: “Amazing series. Good mix of facts, history/context and storytelling. Bonus points for the bar charts on the first story as a way of presenting big data points in a digestible format.”

Finalists

“State Hospital Investigation,” Keoki Kerr, Hawaii News Now

Comments: “Fine journalism!”

“GMO Hawaii: A war is waging in the islands,” Tom Callis, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Wide-ranging stories give a very good overview of GMO in the state, with perspective from both sides.”

Public Service Reporting

First Place – “In the Name of the Law,” Nick Grube, Patti Epler—Civil Beat

Comments: “A clear winner in a very competitive category. The depth and breadth of this series was impressive … an extraordinary and chilling investigation into law enforcement misconduct and its ability to operate beyond public scrutiny.”

Finalists

“GMOs and the Hawaiian Community,” Britt Yap, Ke‘opulaulani Reelitz—Mana Magazine

“Hawaiian Education in the DOE,” Kathryn Wagner, Alyssa Navares, Mary Alice Ka‘iulani Milham, Ke‘opulaulani Reelitz, Janelle Kalawe—Mana Magazine

DAILY NEWSPAPERS

Spot News Reporting

First Place – “10 years in fatal crash,” John Burnett, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Compelling narrative spot reporting of a painful sentencing hearing that deftly includes key elements of a tragic accident.”

Finalists

“Flossie strikes,” Eileen Chao, Melissa Tanji, Lila Fujimoto, Chris Sugidono—Maui News

Comments: “A comprehensive account of a storm and the damage it inflicted that provides nearly everything a citizen should know — all done in difficult conditions.”

“Priest-Crash kills health director,” Chris Sugidono, Maui News

Comments: “Excellent spot reporting on deadline that overcame logistical challenges while taking care to insist that the health director’s death had yet to be completely confirmed.”

General News/Enterprise Reporting

First Place – “Pop Warner embezzlement,” John Burnett, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Finalists

“Food thrown out,”    Nancy Cook Lauer, West Hawaii Today

“Isle mortgage broker facing court hearing on bankruptcy,” Melissa Tanji, Nanea Kalani—Maui News

Feature Writing/Short Form

First Place – “Making it official,”    Colin Stewart, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Well written story on an issue of high interest.”

Finalists

“Fixing pools gone amuck,” Carolyn Lucas-Zenk, West Hawaii Today

Comments: “Story brings light to an environmental issue in a community in a compelling manner.”

“Ocean swim part of an active life,” Rich Van Scoy, Maui News

Comments: “Good human interest story on changing senior adult lifestyles.”

Feature Writing/Long Form

First Place – “’I was supposed to die’” Lila Fujimoto, Maui News

Finalist

“15 years later, man’s slaying still unsolved,” Brian Perry, Maui News

Feature Page Design

First Place – “Got rocks?” Brenda Jensen, West Hawaii Today

Finalists

“Google: Peering into social mindset,”           Nathan Christophel     , Hawaii Tribune-Herald

“GMO Hawaii: A war is waging in the islands,” Meg Scarbrough, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

INTERNET

Online News Reporting

First Place – “Diane Lee’s Reporting on the Same-Sex-Marriage Special Session,” Diane Lee, Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “I like the presentation as a package, sort of a non-linear way to tell the story. I wish the layout on the landing page had better use of headline font sizes so they’d stand out more. And in the “”man on the street”” interviews, I wish they could have been done in video instead of text, just to underscore this is online journalism. But those are quibbles. Great job done in a different way, on a big news story.”

Finalists

“Fo Teach Pidgin o Not Fo Teach Pidgin ? Das Da Question,” Alia Wong, Civil Beat

Comments: “Fascinating topic, though for an outsider, a little long of a package to absorb. But fascinating… and important. Also like the video support materials with the reporter’s voiceover, too.”

“Learning Hilo,” Alia Wong, PF Bentley—Civil Beat

Comments: “Nice writing, strong individual stories.”

Online Feature Reporting

First Place – “Waikiki’s Venetian Nightmare: Natural Disasters in Paradise?” Sophie Cocke, Civil Beat

Comments: “Like her Ala Wai Canal package, this is written with crisp prose, solid reporting and obvious depth of knowledge of the topic. She owns this beat. ”

Finalists

“Making Waves: Tommy Russo Is ‘Fighting for Change’ on Maui,” Nathan Eagle, Civil Beat

Comments: “Always good to read about a butt-kicking journalist who loves his community.”

“Bones in Purgatory: 660 Skeletal Remains Languish in Church Basement,” Sophie Cocke, Civil Beat

Comments: “Compelling story. Only nit is wish there could have been a photo of the bones in the basement, though I can guess the church turned it down.”

Category comments: “Some fine work! Sort of wish Civil Beat wasn’t so dominant, but the quality is there….”

Best Multimedia Presentation

First Place – “Ala Wai Canal: Hawaii’s Biggest Mistake?” Sophie Cocke, Joe Rubin, PF Bentley—Civil Beat

Comments: “Wow, comprehensive and incredibly well-done. Tackles a difficult, dense subject in digestible chunks and organizes the issues well. Also like that you’re including links to ‘Ongoing Coverage.’”

Finalist

“In the Name of the Law,” Staff, Civil Beat

Comments: “Solid reporting, interesting look at how law enforcement is working (or not working). Wish there were more ways to incorporate video, but the infographic is good, and the searchable database is very nice to have.”

Best Overall News Site

First Place – Honolulu Civil Beat, Staff, Civil Beat

Comments: “It’s hard to deny CB. Such great deep reporting nicely presented…”

Finalists

“HuffPost Hawaii” Chloe Fox, Gabriela Aoun, Carla Herreria—HuffPost Hawaii

Comments: General Interest Site. Good reporting though w/o bylines these read a bit anonymous…

“All Hawaii News – Top Hawaii government and political news from all the islands,” Nancy Cook Lauer, All Hawaii News

Best 1-Person Online News Site/1-Person News Blog

“All Hawaii News- Top Hawaii government and political news from all the islands,” Nancy Cook Lauer , All Hawaii News

Comments: “This site glows with the passion of its creator. The writing isn’t elegant, it’s straight-on journalism and unvarnished commentary, and it’s alive with the moment and depth of knowledge and love for the state. Awesome, and an example of one future for journalism.”

Best 1-Person Online Features Site/1-Person Features Blog

First Place – “Martin Luther King, Jr. Wearing a Lei in Selma, Alabama (and Other Blogs),” Ray Tsuchiyama, Pacific Visions and Memories

Comments: “Very strong, evocative writing steeped in history. As a reader, I get drawn in and taken to the past in each piece submitted. One nit is not a criticism of the writer, but of the site that publishes him: The photos are dreadfully presented. And in the case of “”Hawaiian Eye,”” someone — if not the writer, then a producer or even an editor at the paper, should have embedded the TV show’s theme, which is easily available on YouTube.”

Finalists

“Sugar + Shake: Sweets, Savories, Sips & More,” Dawn Sakamoto Paiva, Sugar + Shake

Comments: “Nice, very good foodie blog with a strong local base.”

“Social Encore,” Jermel-Lynn Quillopo, www.honolulupulse.com

Comments: “Her writing can be a little rough, but her passion and love for her home state is obvious. Like the photos too.”

MAGAZINES

Business Reporting

First Place – “Twins?” Dennis Hollier, Hawaii Business

Comments: “This crammed an easy-to-understand semester’s worth of information about how banks invest and make money into one story. Comparing the practices of these two banks was a public service.”

Finalists

“Million Dollar Microbes,” Dennis Hollier, Hawaii Business

Comments: “A terrific examination and clear explanation of how much a research center can mean to a college or university. Plus, the story provided many meaningful examples of how this all works.”

“Parking In Paradise,” Michael Keany, Matt Kain—Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “My kingdom for a parking space … a well-done examination of what’s behind the high prices and aggravation, plus interesting side notes, such as the Hall of Shame. ”

Category comments: “This was a tough category to judge. All six entries stood out: interesting topics, strong research and most of all, these subjects affect readers.”

Industry or Trade Reporting

First Place – “The Everything Guide to Ahi,” Martha Cheng, Mari Taketa, Tiffany Hill, Katrina Valcourt—Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “A lively, detailed, colorful biography of an iconic fish, bolstered by dazzling art and design. The best of a highly competitive category.”

Finalists

“Biofuel Industry on the Big Island,” Patricia Tummons, Environment Hawai’i

Comments: “Tales about things going wrong are hard to tell, but can be compelling when relayed with as much intelligence and detail as this entry.”

“GMOs and the Hawaiian Community,” Britt Yap, Mana Magazine

Comments: “An insightful examination of an important issue.”

Profile

First Place – “Flight Instructor,” Kunio Hayashi, Sonny Ganaden, Greg Vaughn, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee–Hana Hou!

Comments: “Great writing, pictures and layout! Love it!”

Finalists

“The Fighter,” Kunio Hayashi, Aaron Kandell, Dana Edmunds, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee—Hana Hou!

Comments: “Tightly written. Very nice package.”

“Can Ben Jay Save UH Sports?” David Thompson, Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “Very strong package. It was hard to choose between this and the other winners.”

Category comments: “Very impressive entries in this category. I’d like to give an honorable mention to CEO of the Year: Stanley Kuriyama. Lots of hard work went into that piece”

Feature Writing/Short Form

First Place – “Ode to Red Cinder Road,” Derek Paiva, HAWAI‘I Magazine

Finalists

“Into The Black,” Kunio Hayashi, Hunter Haskins, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee—Hana Hou!

“Field Notes: God Wants You to Be a Millionaire,” David Thompson, Honolulu Magazine

Feature Writing/Long Form

First Place – “From Souvenirs to Saks: The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of the International Marketplace,” David Thompson, Honolulu Magazine

Comments: “Comprehensive, well researched, interesting sources and well written. A worthy tribute an icon of the past.”

Finalists

“Go Fish!” Kunio Hayashi, Michael Shapiro, Monte Costa, Leigh Morrison, Samuel Lee—Hana Hou!

Comments: “Intriguing slice of life in a remote and romantic place with unusual characters well described. Conveys sense of place and lostness.”

“Georgia & Ansel in Hawai‘i” Maureen O’Connell, HAWAI’I Magazine

Comments: “Elegant story benefits from tight focus and generous display of artwork, deep research, as well as local connection.”

Page Design

First Place – “75 Places to Eat Like A Local,” Cody Kawamoto, HAWAI‘I Magazine

Comments: “Clean, professional, clear. Something I’d want to keep on hand for reference. Nice use of complementary fonts and colors.”

Finalists

“Eddie Went,” Janelle Kalawe, Mana Magazine

Comments: “Very clever design. Good mix of design elements yet the package maintains a cohesive feel.”

“Boom!” Mary Pigao, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Layout really grabs the reader’s attention. Nice use of white space.”

Category comments: “Some excellent entries in this category.”

Magazine Cover

First Place – “HONOLULU Magazine, April 2013,” Erik Ries, Honolulu Magazine

Finalists

“Kaho‘olawe: Kanaloa Rising” Janelle Kalawe, Olivier Koning, Ke‘opulaulani Reelitz—Mana Magazine

“Huakai: Fall 2013” Cody Kawamoto, HAWAI’I Magazine

NEWSPAPERS

Business Reporting

First Place – “Isle mortgage broker facing court hearing on bankruptcy,” Nanea Kalani, Melissa Tanji—Maui News

Comments: “Nanea Kalani does a service by shedding light on the shady dealings of mortgage brokers.”

Finalists

“Out of its shell,” Colin Stewart, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “A clearly-told look at a budding industry.”

“Kona Village laying off last workers,” Erin Miller, West Hawaii Today

News Page Design

First Place – “Design: Snow and Ironman preview,” Joseph Mountain, West Hawaii Today

Comments: “Nice use of photo with banner. Good headline with color splash ‘m’ in middle.”

Finalists

“Ka Molokai Makahiki 2013,” Laura Pilz, Molokai Dispatch

Comments: “Colorful page with a lot going on, but not too busy to confuse reader. Liked the text flow on top of photo cutout.”

“GMO Hawaii: A war is waging in the islands,” Meg Scarbrough, Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Comments: “Good blend of stories graphics and pictures. Layout pretty conventional, but effective.”

NONDAILY NEWSPAPERS

General News/Enterprise Reporting

First Place – “Energy on Molokai,” Catherine Cluett, Molokai Dispatch

Comments: “Nice job balancing the different perspectives on this story. Lots of potential impact on the local community.”

Finalist

“K-Bay Marine linguist named best in DoD,” Christine Cabalo, Hawaii Marine

Comments: “Many people may not know about this award; it is good to let locals know one of their own received it.”

Feature Writing

First Place -“K-Bay Marines reap benefits from acupuncture in pinpoint solution,” Christine Cabalo, Hawaii Marine

Comments: “Intriguing story on use of alternative medicine for soldiers.”

Finalist

“Island Legend: Paniolo Jimmy Duvauchelle,” Catherine Cluett, Molokai Dispatch

Community Reporting

First Place – “Does the state’s new $7 million seawall at Ukumehame work?” Louise Rockett, Lahaina News

Comments: “A terrific investigation into whether an expensive highway project is really working, or whether it’s creating a potential public safety hazard. Good local color and anecdotes.”

Finalists

“The Poop Scoop: What happens after you flush,” Jessica Ahles, Molokai Dispatch

“Ready to launch: Marine aids Kalaheo High School robotics team,” Christine Cabalo, Hawaii Marine

RADIO

General News/Enterprise Reporting

First Place – “’Linsanity’ Details Rise of Asian-American Basketball Star,”          Heidi Chang, Faith Lapidus— Voice of America

Comments: “An important story about the challenges Jeremy Lin has faced, told in a very conversational way.

Finalist

“Special Legislative Session (Marriage Equality)” Wayne Yoshioka, Hawaii Public Radio

Feature Reporting

First Place -“Plugged In on the Streets,” Molly Solomon, Hawaii Public Radio

Comments: “Compelling exploration of homelessness from a unique perspective.”

Finalists

“Growing a New Crop of Young Farmers,” Molly Solomon, Hawaii Public Radio

Comments: “Insightful exploration of evolution in agriculture.”

“’If It Swings’: An Asian-American Jazzman’s Pioneering Career,” Heidi Chang, National Public Radio

Comments: “Well-written story on intercultural jazz movement.”

Student

Student News Reporting in Any Media

First Place – “My Wish is to Create a Business,” Ashley Shaffer, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Strong, nice presentation too.”

Finalist

“Yelp Me,” Ashley Shaffer, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Pretty interesting story on a topic that young people would be interested in.”

Student Feature Reporting in Any Media

First Place – “How I Learned to Love to Weed,” Ava Rose Prince, Environment Hawai‘i

Comments: “Wow, a high school student! Very impressive…”

Finalists

“Startup in a Cup,” Ashley Shaffer, Hawaii Business

Comments: “Cool story, nice writing and layout.”

“Boom!” Ashley Shaffer , Hawaii Business

Comments: “Solid look at the gun issue in Hawai’i. Good photos too.”

TELEVISION

Government Reporting

First Place – “PRISON GUARD SICK DAYS”   Keoki Kerr, Darin Akita—Hawaii News Now

Comments: “An astonishing analysis of the high percentage — nearly 50% — of prison guards calling in sick on Super Bowl Sunday, during March madness and a parade day for a local football player. Great explanation of the impact on coworkers and why it’s so easy to call in sick.”

Finalist

“Empty City Parking Garage,” Keoki Kerr, Hawaii News Now

Business Reporting

First Place – “Business booming on Lanai with new billionaire owner,” Keoki Kerr, George Hurd, Mahealani Kahoano—Hawaii News Now

Comments: “A fine report on the changes that are coming to the traditionally closed, remote island of Lanai.”

Finalist

“HE>I” Marisa Yamane, Travis Nishida—KHON2

General News/Enterprise Reporting

First Place – “Empty New City Parking Garage,” Keoki Kerr, Hawaii News Now

Comments: “This story, about a new parking garage sitting nearly empty while city workers scramble for parking elsewhere, is perfect for television. Very nicely done.”

Feature Reporting

First Place – “Hawaii’s only elevator operator hopes to lift the spirit of others,” Olena Heu, KHON2

Comments: “Interesting human interest feature with vintage slant.”

Finalists

“Modern Cowboys,” Diane Ako, Tracy Arakaki—smalltalk.staradvertiserblogs.com

Comments: “Clever exploration of changing culture.”

“What a catch! Man reels in 759 lb. marlin off Kewalo Basin” Kristine Uyeno, KHON2

Comments: “Creative story on catching the big one.”

Spot News Reporting

First Place – “Haleiwa Fire,” Marisa Yamane, Taires Hiranaka, KHON2

Comments: “Vivid coverage of a wildfire threatening homes, seen through the eyes of worried residents. ”

Finalist

“Palolo Hikers Rescued,” Marisa Yamane, Taires Hiranaka—KHON2

Investigative Reporting

First Place – “State Hospital Investigation,” Keoki Kerr, Darin Akita, Mahealani Kahoano—Hawaii News Now

Comments: “This really is a terrific report.(Previous comments on the series from the other category.)”

Finalists

“Growing tab for UH head-hunts amid budget crunch,” Gina Mangieri, Greg Lau—KHON2

Comments: “Good story. A visual approach might be helpful — even a chart that shows actual revenue numbers instead of just saying the amounts swing wildly.”

“Careless disposal puts personal info at risk,” Gina Mangieri, Greg Lau—KHON2

Comments: “Good deeper research showing the cost of a variety of personnel searches at UH.”

Videography

First Place – “Modern Cowboys,” Tracy Arakaki, Diane Ako—smalltalk.staradvertiserblogs.com

Comments: “Strong, lively video work and narration, good storytelling. This story works better as a video package than text with stills.”

Series Reporting/Documentary/Special News

First Place -“Hokule’a: Her Farthest Journey,” Kathy Muneno, KHON2

Finalist

“Mysterious urn found on the beach,” Reid Shimizu, Tammy Mori, Ron Mizutani, KHON2

THANK YOU TO THE JUDGES OF THE TOP OF THE ROCKIES CONTEST. YOU HELPED MAKE THIS CONTEST POSSIBLE.

Board members:

  • Dave Briscoe
  • Teresa Dawson
  • Nancy Cook Lauer
  • Christy Strobel

Honolulu Star-Advertiser

  • Richard Borreca
  • Nanea Kalani
  • Stirling Morita
  • Curtis Murayama
  • Mary Poole
  • Dave Shapiro
  • Christie Wilson
  • Alan Yonan
  • Lucy Young-Oda

PacificBasin Communications

  • Jen Tadako Catanzariti
  • Dennis Hollier
  • Kristin Lipman
  • Lennie Omalza
  • Steve Petranik
  • Christi Young

3.3 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Volcano Area of Big Island

A 3.3 magnitude earthquake was registered at 5:37 AM this morning in the Volcano area of the Big Island:
3.3 Volcano

VIDEO: NASA’s Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Successfully Launched From Kauai

NASA’s Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) was successfully launched on a helium balloon today at the U.S. Navy’s Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii later the LDSD will be released at 120,000 feet and fire a Star 48B rocket motor to boost it to Mach 4.0 and 180,000 feet.

NASA IFO

This height and speed simulates a spacecraft flying through the Martian atmosphere and is where the air breaking systems will be tested on the LDSD vehicle.
[youtube=http://youtu.be/R0_rhvrdJVU]
LDSD is fitted with what is called SIAD-R, a giant dounaut air bag that will increase the diameter of the vehicle and help slow it down to Mach 2.5 where a supersonic parachute will deploy ahead of a safe landing in the Pacific Ocean for recovery.

UH Hilo College of Hawaiian Language Announces Dean’s List Spring 2014

UH Hilo Moniker

Ke kūkala aku nei ko Ke Kulanui o Hawaiʻi ma Hilo Ka Haka Ula O Keelikōlani i nā inoa o nā haumāna kaha oi no ke kau Kupulau 2014 (<a href="http://hilo.hawaii.edu">University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo</a> Ka HakaUla O Ke`elikōlani College of Hawaiian Language announces its Dean’s List for the Spring 2014 semester):

Jai Ho Choi, Samuel Clubb, Dillon Dominguez, Brandi Dugo, Shari Frias, Philip Gamiao, Alexander Guerrero, Kayla Ing, Linda Ixtupe, Erika Jardin, Kamalani Johnson, Tiphani Kainoa, Kamaleiku`uipo Kalehuawehe-Valentine, Micah Kealaiki, Jacqueline Kinge, Maile Kipapa, Gail Klevens, Dylon Koehn, Ciera Lamb, Hannah Lockwood, Daniel McDonald, Candice Miner-Ching, Lilia Misheva, Samantha Pa, Christopher Ramos, Kapuaonaona Roback, Koa Rodrigues, Ronald Santos, Nelli Semenko, You Jin Shin, Eric Taaca, Gabriel Tebow, Lindsay Terkelsen, Randall Yamaoka, and Cheyne Yonemori.

Lava Flow Continues to Creep – New Breakout on Northeast Flank

New breakout on the northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō

Elevated pressure within Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone reached a breaking point this morning with magma intruding through the cone and erupting from fissures on the northeast flank of the cone. These new vents fed a vigorous, but still relatively short, channelized flow that had reached about 1.5 km (0.9 miles) northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō by 11 am. This new activity was accompanied by minor sagging of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater floor, due to withdrawal of magma within the cone.

View of the sinuous channelized flow that is moving to the northeast. The flow front this morning was about 1.5 km (0.9 miles) from Puʻu ʻŌʻō.

Left: The advancing front of the channelized flow northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The front this morning was 1.5 km (0.9 miles) from Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Right: Thermal image of the channelized lava flow. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is at the top of the image. The line of slightly lower temperatures down the center of the channel represents more intact (and cooler) crust, which is less disrupted than the lava near the channel margins.

This Quicktime movie shows the swiftly moving lava in the channelized flow.

This Quicktime movie shows a large chunk of lava being pushed by the current in the channel.

This comparison of a normal photograph with a thermal image shows the distribution of activity northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Today’s breakouts originated from several fissures on the upper northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone, sending out flows to the northeast. These partially overlap with the existing Kahaualeʻa 2 flow, which had scattered surface flows this morning.

A closer look at the breakout points of today’s new activity. The lava erupted from several fissures which broke through, and slightly uplifted, older lava on the cone.

Left: A very close view of one of the breakout points, with fresh spatter coating the older lava. Right: Another view of the spatter coating the area around the breakout point.

The withdrawal of magma from within Puʻu ʻŌʻō, to feed the new flows, has caused minor subsidence of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater floor since this morning. This was associated with small collapses at the spatter cones on the crater floor. A partial collapse of this cone revealed a small pond of lava just below the surface.

As noted above, the new flows have caused withdrawal of magma within Puʻu ʻŌʻō and small collapses of the several cones on the crater floor. Dropping lava levels in the northeast lava pond in Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater caused collapses and enlargement of the pond, which has nearly claimed the time-lapse camera (left side of images) observing the lava pond.

Kahaualeʻa 2 flow remained active this morning

Surface flows remained active this morning on the Kahaualeʻa 2 flow, but today’s observations suggest that the new breakouts at Puʻu ʻŌʻō may have interrupted the lava supply to the Kahaualeʻa 2 flow field. Observations over the next few days will be able to determine if the lava supply to the Kahaualeʻa 2 flow has ceased.

Army Invites Public to Comment on Environmental Impacts of Possible Force Reductions

The Department of the Army has completed a Supplemental Programmatic Environmental Assessment (SPEA) for Army 2020 force structure realignment and is making a draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FNSI) available for public comment. All interested members of the public, federally-recognized Indian or Alaska Native tribes, Native Hawaiian groups, federal, state, and local agencies are invited to review and provide comments.

public review and commentComments will be accepted until August 25. Please submit written comments to: U.S. Army Environmental Command, ATTN: SPEA Public Comments, 2450 Connell Road (Building 2264), Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234-7664; or by email to usarmy.jbsa.aec.nepa@mail.mil

The SPEA and draft FNSI may be accessed at: http://aec.army.mil/Services/Support/NEPA/Documents.aspx . Also, approximately one week after publication of the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register by the Army, copies of the SPEA and draft FNSI will be available in some public libraries near the affected installations.

The draft FNSI incorporates the SPEA, which does not identify any significant environmental impacts from the proposed action, with the exception of socioeconomic impacts at most installations. The draft FNSI concludes that preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is not required.

Final decisions as to which installations will be selected for reductions in Soldiers and Army civilians have not yet been made. The SPEA’s analysis of environmental and socioeconomic impacts will help force structure decision-makers as they identify specific units and organizations to be affected by reductions over the 2015-2020 timeframe.

Following the conclusion of the NEPA process, the Army will conduct community listening sessions to receive public input before making any force structure decisions. This information will assist with the military value analysis. The schedule of the community listening sessions will be announced locally, after the conclusion of the SPEA process.

Current budgetary projections require the Army to analyze the reduction of Active Component end strength to a level below that analyzed in the January 2013 Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA). The SPEA builds on the foundation of the 2013 PEA and assesses the impacts of a potential reduction of an additional 70,000 Soldiers and associated reductions in Army civilians, down to an Active Component end-strength of 420,000. These reductions are necessary to achieve the savings required by the Budget Control Act of 2011.

Nearly all Army installations will be affected in some way by additional reductions. The 2013 PEA evaluated 21 Army installations and joint bases where Army stationing changes could lead to Brigade Combat Team (BCT) restructuring, the loss of a BCT through force drawdown, or a combined loss of 1,000 or more Soldiers and Army civilian employees (Army employees) during the fiscal year 2013-2020 timeframe. With the deeper reductions now anticipated, the Army must consider additional installations that have the potential to lose 1,000 or more Army employees. The potential loss of 1,000 Army employees was determined to be the appropriate threshold for inclusion of installations at the programmatic level of analysis. Installations that could experience reductions of 1,000 or more Army employees were specifically analyzed in the SPEA.

In both the 2013 PEA and the SPEA, each document’s respective reduction alternative analyzed potential reductions at Fort Benning, GA; Fort Bliss, TX; Fort Bragg, NC; Fort Campbell, KY; Fort Carson, CO; Fort Drum, NY; Fort Gordon, GA; Fort Hood, TX; Fort Irwin, CA; Fort Knox, KY; Fort Lee, VA; Fort Leonard Wood, MO; Fort Polk, LA; Fort Riley, KS; Fort Sill, OK; Fort Stewart, GA; Fort Wainwright, AK; Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, AK; Joint Base Langley-Eustis, VA; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA; and, United States Army Garrison (USAG) Hawaii – Schofield Barracks, HI. The SPEA also analyzed potential reductions at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD; Fort Belvoir, VA; Fort Huachuca, AZ; Fort Jackson, SC; Fort Leavenworth, KS; Fort Meade, MD; Fort Rucker, AL; Joint Base San Antonio – Fort Sam Houston, TX; and USAG Hawaii – Fort Shafter.

The SPEA provides an assessment of the possible direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental and socioeconomic impacts of the greatest Army employee reductions being considered at each installation. The SPEA does not identify any significant environmental impacts as a result of implementing the proposed action, with the exception of socioeconomic impacts at most installations; consequently, the preparation of an environmental impact statement is not required.

For further information, please contact the U.S. Army Environmental Command Public Affairs Office at (210) 466-1590 or toll-free 855-846-3940, or email at usarmy.jbsa.aec.nepa@mail.mil.

Inaugural State Teacher Fellowship Program to Play Key Role in Public Education

The Hawaii State Department of Education (DOE) is pleased to announce the selection of 17 public school educators to the Hope Street Group’s inaugural Hawaii State Teacher Fellows. Together with the DOE and the Hawaii State Teachers Association (HSTA), the fellows will voice teacher perceptions and potential solutions to issues educators face in implementing the Hawaii Common Core.

DOE ReleaseThe fellows represent a range of outstanding Hawaii teachers chosen from a pool of competitive candidates from across the state. Selected for their strong individual commitments to improving learning outcomes for children, fellows will serve as leaders among their peers for the next 12 months, and have the option of continuing in their leadership capacity for additional school years.

“The Hawaii State Teacher Fellows have a critical charge ahead to expand engagement of their peers, by their peers. They stand ready to lead in this role as they lead every day in their respective classrooms,” said Dan Cruce, vice president for education, Hope Street Group.

The 17 teachers selected to be Hawaii’s first State Teacher Fellows are:

  1. Yuuko Arikawa (Leilehua Complex)
  2. Ruth Ballinger (Puunene – Maui District)
  3. Justin Brown (Kealakehe High)
  4. Kristen Brummel (McKinley Complex)
  5. Jaimelynne Cruz (Kamaile Academy)
  6. Elizabeth Marie Fitzpatrick (Keonopoko Elementary)
  7. Michelle June Fujie (Lanai High and Elementary)
  8. Jonathan Gillentine (Windward District)
  9. Tracey Lynn Idica (Aiea High)
  10. Dana Ishiii (Kanoelani Elementary)
  11. Loretta Labrador (Kualapuu Public Charter)
  12. Sharon M. Look (Paia Elementary)
  13. Jonathon Medeiros (Kauai High)
  14. Tracy Monroe (Ilima Intermediate)
  15. Christopher J. Rodriguez (Waipahu Elementary)
  16. Jamie Takamura (Red Hill Elementary)
  17. Leslie Toy (Aiea Intermediate)

Through the partnership, the group will be trained in peer and community engagement, data collection and media strategies – all with the intent of sharing information with the community. Fellows will also collect input from their peers to present to the DOE.

“The development of the Hawaii State Teacher Fellows is a tremendous step toward our shared commitment to engage teachers at every level,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “This collaborative program will reinforce our strategic work toward student and staff success in our schools. We’re grateful to our partners for their commitment and support in this effort.”

By engaging school communities, informing state policy decisions, and participating in professional development and training opportunities, fellows will work toward elevating the teaching profession and providing the DOE with critical feedback on the Hawaii Common Core – a set of consistent learning expectations aimed at preparing all graduates for college and careers.

HSTA Executive Director Al Nagasako supports this work stating, “Engaging teachers in the elevation of their profession is core to our work at the Hawaii State Teachers Association. We look forward to continuing our collaborative partnership with Hope Street Group and the Department of Education as this program provides additional teacher voice at the decision-making table.”

The Hawaii State Teacher Fellows program is supported locally by grants from Harold K. L. Castle Foundation, Hawaii Community Foundation, and by a $200,000 grant from McInerny Foundation.

“This program is heavily focused on supporting the development of teacher leaders in Hawaii, which is why the Castle Foundation chose to support it. We believe it is a step in the right direction in building a profession of teachers in Hawaii who take on added leadership to improve the system,” said Harold K.L. Castle Foundation President and CEO Terrence R. George.

“Ensuring that teachers have a voice in decisions that impact their daily practice is essential,” added Tammi Chun of the Hawaii Community Foundation.

Hope Street Group is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunity and prosperity for all Americans. For more information, see www.hopestreetgroup.org.

Annual Richardson Ocean Park Rough Water Swim Suspended for 2014

Unforeseen circumstances have prompted the Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation to suspend the 2014 Richardson Ocean Park Rough Water Swim that was to be held next month in Hilo.

Waimea's Mo Mathews a Swimming Legend. 82-year old Mo Mathews being helped out of Richardson's by friends Jim Budde (left) and Ed Doherty.

Waimea’s Mo Mathews a Swimming Legend. 82-year old Mo Mathews being helped out of Richardson’s by friends Jim Budde (left) and Ed Doherty.

Planning efforts are already under way to offer a bigger and better rough water swim next summer at Richardson Ocean Park.

The Department of Parks and Recreation apologizes for any inconvenience caused by the cancellation of this year’s swimming competition and thanks the public for its patience and understanding.

For more information, please contact Mason Souza, Recreation Administrator, at 961-8740 or 333-9784.

The Kawainui-Hamakua Complex Master Plan

The Kawainui-Hamakua Complex Master Plan Update represents a vision and call for community action for appropriate resource management. It is not a development plan. These wetlands are on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance.

Click to read the DRAFT

Click to read the DRAFT

This master plan update includes elements supporting wetland restoration and upland reforestation, Hawaiian practices and stewardship, on-site learning activities focused on environmental and cultural subjects, and passive outdoor recreation.

This plan was developed with broad public input over the course of several years and numerous community meetings. Public input is integral to the planning process, as such, opportunities for public input will continue through 2015. The concepts within the plan will guide the natural, educational, and cultural values and management outcomes of Kawainui and Hamakua for current and future generations.

THE FACTS

  • The most important components of this plan are the restoration and management of wetland and upland natural resources with a primary focus on recovery of endangered Hawaiian waterbird species. Upland areas would be re-established as native upland forest. Additionally, managing the Kawainui wetland is critical for maintaining its hydrological functions for flood control. Management is necessary to reverse the on going degradation of these wetlands.
  • Kawainui is the largest remaining freshwater wetland in the State of Hawaii. The Kawainui-Hamakua complex encompasses nearly 1000 acres. It is one of 36 wetlands in the U.S. designated a Ramsar Convention Wetlands of International Importance. It is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places as a significant cultural complex.
  • The planning process for the master plan commenced in 2011 and has included information gathering and site visits; consultations with stake holders, community and Native Hawaiian organizations, and agencies; public informational meetings; and analysis of site constraints and consideration of alternatives. The environmental review process will begin in the fall of 2014, and it will discuss alternatives considered and provide additional opportunities for comment and input.
  • The Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources DLNR) and its divisions of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) and State Parks have jurisdiction over different areas within the complex based on the natural and cultural resources present.
  • The plan is intended to meet DLNR agency mission of restoration and habitat enhancement, integrating Hawaiian cultural practices, providing managed public access, creating educational and stewardship opportunities, and accommodating passive outdoor recreational use.

The following elements of the plan were driven by community interest and guidance as part of the planning process. Improvements would be implemented over time in phases subject to funding availability, phasing priorities, and adaptive management of the resource. DLNR does not intend to open areas unless DLNR is able to manage the area.

  • Community-based Hawaiian cultural organizations have made precedent-setting strides in stewardship and educational programming within the complex. Four areas have been conceptualized by the Hawaiian community to support living culture by non-profit organizations, and are not for commercial use. This will create opportunities for people of all ages to experience the integration of traditional and cultural practices that have informed effective resource management in Hawaii for hundreds of years.
  • Facilities incorporated into the plan are intended to support the uses programmed which consist of (1) areas to support cultural practices; (2) DLNR maintenance and operations; and (3) educational programs, stewardship activities, and public access and outdoor recreation. Support facilities allow for expansion of interpretive and educational opportunities, as well as community involvement in protecting and preserving Kawainui-Hamakua. Facilities would incorporate sustainable elements in their design.
  • The plan currently proposes a 5.7-mile-long perimet er path and a system of foot trails, providing designated access to areas for stewardship activities, nature viewing, and other forms of low-impact recreation.
  • There are three parking areas planned to be open to the public which are (1) at the education center; (2) park site across from Kalaheo High School; and (3) area across from Le Jardin Academy. All other parking area would have restricted access. These would be constructed using permeable materials. Gated entries will control vehicular access within the Kawainui-Hamakua Complex.
  • Groups of 25 or more will require a permit from DLNR. Note that small commercial tours and groups are currently visiting the site. Those activities require permits and will be better managed under the plan to minimize impacts on the site’s cultural and ecological resources.
  • Other improvements to support management of the area being planned include (1) fencing around property boundary; (2) predator fending around wetlands; (3) increasing staff for operations and enforcement; (4) contracting out to security firms and coordinating with non-profit organizations for monitoring activities; and (5) increased signage to facilitate enforcement.

To learn more about the project, opportunities to provide comments, and review the draft plan, please visit the project Web site at http://www.hhf.com/kawainui/index.html