Questions Answered About New Pahoa Park Plans

The new park that is being built in Pahoa is going up rather quickly and some folks in the community had some questions about the park so I emailed Department of Parks and Recreation Public Information Officer Jason Armstrong some questions and got a reply from him today on these questions.
Pahoa Regional ParkPBR Hawaii is the firm that appears to be handling most of the construction design at the park.  You can learn more about the project on their website here:  Pahoa Park Expansion Master Plan

I took this picture yesterday from the backside of the skate park:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Here are the questions and answers that I received from Armstrong:

How many people will P&R hire to maintain and operate Pahoa District Park?

Three; two park  caretakers (who mostly likely will be existing employees transferred from other sites) and one recreation technician. P&R is now in the recruiting phase for the rec. tech. position. We anticipate filling this position by August 1, 2016.

What will be the park hours?

Operating hours will be set by the Director. Typically, park hours are 6 am – 11 pm daily. The pool, senior center, skate park,  community center and new covered play courts (gym) likely will have different hours, however, based on patron demand and the need to have personnel onsite to operate those facilities.

Will the park have a security gate?

Yes

How many new parking stalls are being added?

373 new stalls, including 21 ADA-compliant stalls

What is the expected opening date?

No specific date has been set; we estimate opening in late August or early September of this year

Is the skate park part of the park?

Yes

If anyone is really interested in looking at all the documents related to this new park you can click here to read the 641 page Environmental Assessment that was put together in 2013 before the June 27th Lava Flow almost took out the whole project all together.

Click to read

Click to read

Hokulea Arrives at Block Island

On Sunday, June 19 at approximately 8:00 p.m. local time (2:00 p.m. HST), Hawaii’s famed voyaging canoe Hokulea arrived at Block Island off the coast of Rhode Island after departing New York City on Sunday.
Block IslandAs part of the Hokulea crew’s protocol for showing respect for the land and its people, crew members sought permission to dock the sailing vessel from the indigenous tribes of the area. They were welcomed by a representative of the Narrangansett Indian Tribe. Hokulea captain and master navigator Kalepa Baybayan offered a kahili (feather standard) on behalf of the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage. 
block island2
Community members are encouraged to visit the canoe from 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 21 at the Block Island Boat Basin Marina for canoe tours and to learn more about the Worldwide Voyage. Hokulea is expected to remain on Block Island until Thursday, June 23, before continuing onto Mystic, Connecticut, with safety and weather conditions dictating any sail plans. 

Highway 11 Wreck Claims 32-Year-Old Pahoa Woman

A 32-year-old Pāhoa woman died Friday (June 17) from injuries she received after being involved in a two-vehicle crash on Route 11 at the 21-mile marker in Glenwood.

The victim was identified as Crystal M. Mercado-Lopez of a Pāhoa address.

A crowdfunding site has been set up to offset her funeral costs.  Click on picture to read more.

A crowdfunding site has been set up to help offset the “Celebration of Life” costs. Click on picture to read more.

Responding to a 5 p.m. call, Puna Patrol officers determined that Mercado-Lopez was operating a 2001 Plymouth four-door sedan and traveling south on Route 11 when she crossed the centerline and sideswiped a 1997 Ford pickup truck traveling north and being operated by a 48-year-old Mountain View man, who was not injured in the crash.

Fire Rescue personnel took Mercado-Lopez and her passenger, an 8-month-old girl, to Hilo Medical Center.

Mercado-Lopez was pronounced dead at 5:56 p.m.

The child was not injured.

Police do not believe that speed, alcohol or drugs were factors in this crash.

Both drivers were wearing their seat belts and the child was in a child restraint seat.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers have initiated a negligent homicide investigation and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Police are looking for a female witness who talked to a fire fighter at the scene.

Anyone with information about this crash is asked to call Officer Erhard Autrata at 961-8118.

This is the 11th traffic fatality on the Big Island this year compared with 12 at this time last year.

Governor Extends Emergency Homeless Proclamation in Hawaii

Gov. David Y. Ige today signed a fifth supplemental proclamation on homelessness, which will remain in effect until August of this year. The supplemental proclamation provides an additional 60 days in which to continue the state’s cross-sector collaboration and coordinated efforts with the counties.

Click to read proclamation

Click to read proclamation

“The state has taken strides forward in creating a truly client-centered system among federal, state, county and community organizations,” said the Governor’s Coordinator on Homelessness Scott Morishige. “We are seeing unprecedented alignment of services and a commitment to the common goal of connecting people to permanent, stable housing as quickly as possible.” Morishige made the statement from the Maui Landlord Summit, where he outlined progress in the state’s unified response to homelessness:

Section 8 Landlords Recruited

The Maui Landlord Summit is the fourth in a series of state-supported events aimed at increasing government-assisted housing inventory. It serves to introduce potential landlords to homeless service providers and government agencies providing landlord support. The summit dispels misperceptions about Section 8 and the Housing First program, and is a collaborative effort between the State of Hawai‘i, County of Maui and Maui’s nonprofit service providers.

100 Homeless Families to be Housed

The Hawai‘i Public Housing Authority (HPHA) board has approved emergency rules to establish a special rental subsidy program, which will make available approximately $600,000 to quickly move at least 100 homeless families statewide into housing. HPHA Executive Director Hakim Ouansafi said, “With partnership with local nonprofits, this program is specifically focused on homeless families, where we expect to have an immediate, noticeable and lasting impact across generations.”

Scott Morishige underscored the importance of the developments: “These are two examples of community partnerships the state is forging to effectively and quickly address homelessness.  We are looking at new and creative ways for the community to pool funds, leverage resources, and work in alignment across all sectors to house and stabilize people experiencing homelessness.”

Over the past week, representatives from the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness and the National Governors Association have been in Hawai‘i as the Governor’s office has convened cross-sector meetings with stakeholders from every county and every sector.

Hawaii Bowhunter Education Certification Now Available Online

In order to expand Bowhunter Education certification options in Hawaii, the Hawaii Hunter Education Program within the Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement, will begin offering Hawaii residents an online Bowhunter Education course, beginning on July 1, 2016.

Hawaii will be available July 1, 2016.

Hawaii will be available July 1, 2016.

This course is approved by the National Bowhunter Education Foundation (NBEF) and meets the requirements to purchase a bowhunting license where required. In addition, it does not require completion of a field day.

Although Hawaii does not require a Bowhunter Education certification to bowhunt, many states are increasingly requiring this additional certification to purchase a bowhunting license.

Currently, the Hawaii Hunter Education Program offers a three-day in-person Bowhunter Education course with field day once a year. Over the past three years, classes have been held on Maui, Oahu, and Hawaii Island.

The Hawaii Hunter Education Program will also continue to schedule one three day in-person bowhunter course per year for those individuals wishing to attend an in-person course.  Please visit: http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/huntered/classes/ for a list of our current classes.

This online course is offered through the NBEF approved Bowhunter-ed.com. The cost for this online course is $30, which is assessed directly from Bowhunter-ed.com after completion of the online course. Students must have completed Basic Hunter Education prior to completing the online Bowhunter Education course.  In addition, students must be at least 10 years old to take this course. This online course is limited to Hawaii residents.

After passing and paying for this course, students will be able to immediately print their Temporary Bowhunter Education Certificate, which is valid to purchase a bowhunting license (where required) so long as it is purchased within the expiration date Students will be mailed their permanent Hawaii Bowhunter Education Certificate from the Hawaii Hunter Education Program within 3-4 weeks. If you complete the online Bowhunter Education course but do not meet the requirements above, you will not be issued a Bowhunter Education certificate from the Hawaii Hunter Education Program.

To take the online Bowhunter Education course after July 1, 2016, simply go to: https://www.bowhunter-ed.com/#select-your-state. Select “Hawaii,” register, and begin the course. The online course includes chapter quizzes and a final exam. For more information, please call the Hawaii Hunter Education Program at: 808-587-0200.

Kahana Drive Bridge Repair Closes Bridge

The Kahana Drive Bridge No. 46-9 located mauka of Highway 19 on Kahana Drive will be closed for repair work starting on Monday, June 27, 2016 beginning at 8:30 a.m. and will reopen on July 1, 2016, weather and constructions conditions permitting.

Kahana Bridge Repair

Motorists will be able to use the Old Māmalahoa Highway and Kalehua Road as alternate routes during the bridge closure period.

The repair work involves the rehabilitation of the existing bridge structure which includes replacing the old timber components with new wood preservative treated components.  The project is estimated to be completed by Friday, July 8, 2016, weather and construction conditions permitting.

Hawai‘i County Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.