Web-Based System to Track Inventory and Sales at Hawaii Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

The Hawaii State Department of Health has contracted with BioTech Medical Software Inc., dba BioTrackTHC for a web-based system that will provide the department 24/7 access to real-time data of medical marijuana inventory, sales, and other information required of dispensary licensees statewide. The negotiated cost of the contract is $239,000 for the first year and $160,000 for each successive year during the five-year agreement. BioTrackTHC was selected through the State of Hawaii Request for Proposals process.

biotrack-logo“This is another major step forward to implement the medical marijuana dispensary program to ensure access for registered patients and their caregivers,” said Keith Ridley, chief of the Office of Health Care Assurance. “After researching various options, we determined a web-based software system would be the most effective and user-friendly way for licensees and state employees to collect and report seed-to-sale tracking information.”

Ridley’s office, which performs all state licensing activities on healthcare facilities, agencies and organizations in Hawaii, is tasked with implementing Act 241, which was signed into law by Gov. David Ige in July 2015.

Detailed Inventory and Sales Information

The seed-to-sale tracking system will be used to collect detailed inventory and sales information such as:

  • The total amount of marijuana at each dispensary production center, in the form of seeds or plants, including all plants that are derived from cuttings or cloning, until the marijuana products are sold or destroyed
  • The total amount of marijuana product inventory at a retail dispensing location
  • The total amount of marijuana products purchased by a qualifying patient and primary caregiver from all retail dispensing locations in any 15-day period
  • The amount of waste produced during the cultivation, harvest, and manufacturing processes.

“BioTrackTHC is an experienced company that has successfully developed and implemented a seed-to-sale tracking system in other states,” said Ridley. “We expect their experience and expertise will help to implement an effective system for Hawaii and we are glad to have them as partners in our effort to ensure patient safety, product safety, and public safety. However, we also realize it will take several weeks of training and then testing to get the system operating smoothly.”

Background

Eight medical marijuana dispensary licenses were issued earlier this year under Act 241 Hawaii Revised Statutes Chapter 329D. Three licenses were issued for the City and County of Honolulu, two dispensary licenses each for the County of Hawaii and the County of Maui, and one dispensary license for the County of Kauai. Each dispensary licensee will be allowed to operate up to two production centers and two retail sites for a total of 16 production centers and 16 retail dispensary locations statewide. Each production center can grow up to 3,000 marijuana plants.

For more information on the Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program go to http://health.hawaii.gov/medicalmarijuanadispensary/

County of Hawaii Inaugural Ceremonies Information

County of Hawaiʻi Executive and Legislative Inaugural Ceremonies for the newly elected Mayor, Prosecuting Attorney, and Council Members will be held at the Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium, 323 Manono Street, Hilo, at 12 Noon on Monday, December 5, 2016.  The public is invited to attend.

2012 Hawaii County Inauguration.

2012 Hawaii County Inauguration.

The program will begin with a prelude of selections by Bandmaster Paul Arceo and the Hawaiʻi County Band.  The procession will be accompanied by the Hawaiʻi County Band.  The Administration of Oath will be administered by the Honorable Ronald Ibarra, Judge, Third Circuit Court.

J.E. Orozco will serve as master of ceremonies.  Address will be given by the Honorable Harry Kim, Mayor; the Honorable Mitch Roth, Prosecuting Attorney and the Honorable Valerie T. Poindexter, Chairperson, Hawaiʻi County Council.

There will be a Presentation of Colors by Hilo High School JROTC Color Guards, and Waiakea High School students will perform musical renderings.  The National and State Anthems will be sung by Alexandra Roth accompanied by the Hawaiʻi County Band.  Senior Pastor Sheldon Lacsina of New Hope – Hilo will provide the Invocation, and the Benediction will be provided by Kahu Charles Kama, of Hale Pule Ke Ola Hou.

Na Leo O Hawaiʻi will televise the inauguration live on Channel 55.

Hawaii First CEO Receives National Honor for Community Development

Laura Aguirre, president and CEO of Hawaii First Federal Credit Union, received the 2016 Annie Vamper Helping Hands Award during the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions’ Annual Conference in Dallas, Texas. This award is the highest honor given by the Federation to community development credit union staff and volunteers.

Laura Aguirre, president and CEO of Hawaii First Federal Credit Union, received the 2016 Annie Vamper Helping Hands Award.

Laura Aguirre, president and CEO of Hawaii First Federal Credit Union, received the 2016 Annie Vamper Helping Hands Award.

Under Aguirre’s Leadership, Hawaii First has received five Community Development Financial Institution awards totaling $3.3 million. These federal dollars allow Hawaii First to provide financial services in low-income communities and to those who lack access to financing.

The credit union also operates two Hawaii First Community Resource Centers and has provided 3,600 East and West Hawaii residents with financial counseling, career resources, tax preparation and more.

“Laura is one of the most caring people dedicated to helping the underserved that I know. It has been an honor to be a part of her team,” said Diane Guidry, Hawaii First board chairperson. “We are always looking for better ways to help our community. Laura shares with her staff so that they all can make a difference, one person at a time, to be the best they can be and achieve their dreams.”

Today, Hawaii First has assets of $42 million. From 2012 to 2016, the credit union’s assets and loans have grown 21% and 23%, respectively, and provided more than $60 million in loans to members.

The Federation is a certified CDFI intermediary representing community development credit unions. The Helping Hands Award was created in 1993 in honor of Annie Vamper, a national advocate for consumer education and cooperation among low-income people until her death in 1990.

Hawaii First’s previous honors with the Federation include the 2009 Dora Maxwell Award for Social Responsibility, the Circle of Honor Leadership Award from the Opportunity Finance Network in 2014, and the 2016 National Louise Herring Award for Philosophy in Action.

Hawaii Electric Light Company to Conduct Aerial Line Inspections Next Week

To improve system reliability, Hawaii Electric Light Company will conduct aerial line inspections of its major overhead transmission lines from Monday, Nov. 28, to Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016.

helicopter-line-inspectionThe islandwide inspections are scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. However, exact times and routes will depend on weather conditions. Inspections will be conducted in a Manuiwa Airways helicopter and require the aircraft to fly low and slow which may cause some noise disturbances.

Hawaii Electric Light apologizes for any disruptions this may cause and sincerely thanks the community for their cooperation and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please call 969-6666.

Hawaiian Electric Companies Offer Improved Online Calculator to Help Customers Decide on Buying an Electric Vehicle

Are you thinking about buying a plug-in electric vehicle, but having trouble figuring out whether you will save money and help the environment compared to a gasoline vehicle? Help is now just a click away, thanks to a new tool from the Hawaiian Electric Companies.

watt-planWattPlan for Electric Vehicles is an interactive, online calculator you can use via desktop, laptop, tablet or smart phone to compare any make and model of plug-in electric vehicle with any internal combustion engine vehicle. It is accessible at: www.hawaiianelectric.com/wattplanforEV.

Using your personal monthly electric bill and current gasoline prices, the tool will help you decide whether an electric vehicle is right for you and your family. The calculator will show that when you charge your electric vehicle can affect your overall energy cost. With new, voluntary time-of-use rates available for residential customers of all three Hawaiian Electric companies, it is less expensive to use electricity during the day, when abundant solar power is being sent to the grid.

“We encourage prospective electric vehicle owners to consider their entire home energy bill – electricity plus gasoline – when making this decision,” said Alan Oshima, Hawaiian Electric president and CEO. “While adding an electric vehicle may slightly increase your monthly electric bill, that will likely be more than offset by buying little or no gasoline. That is my experience as a new electric vehicle owner.”

For those concerned about climate change and the global environment, the WattPlan for Electric Vehicles tool will show the environmental benefits of driving an EV compared to a gasoline car.

“Electric vehicles don’t just result in reduced use of imported oil, exhaust fumes and greenhouse gas emissions,” said Oshima. “Using more electricity during the day will allow us to use more solar power, an important step to help us get to Hawaii’s goal of 100 percent renewable energy.”

The WattPlan for Electric Vehicles was developed for Hawaiian Electric in conjunction with Clean Power Research® (www.cleanpower.com), an award-winning innovation company that delivers software products to enable customers to optimize financing, operation and integration of solar resources, engage consumers with personalized energy evaluations, and streamline business processes.

Clean Power also developed the WattPlan for Rooftop Solar, a personalized online tool that the Hawaiian Electric Companies make available to help their customers decide whether rooftop solar is right for them, and if so, what size is best and the comparative costs of buying or leasing a system.

Rep. McKelvey Questions Gabbard’s Lack of Support in Condemning Trumps Appointment

Maui lawmaker says Congresswoman should stand with Democrats against racism

Rep. Angus McKelvey last week sent a letter to Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard asking why she has not joined in solidarity with many other Democrats in opposition to President-elect Donald Trump’s appointment of Stephen Brannon as chief strategist to the White House.

Letter attached below

Letter attached below

Brannon is known as a racist xenophobe with support from white nationalist hate groups.

In light of recent national reports that the Congresswoman has met with Trump, McKelvey said Hawaii’s residents have a right to know if Gabbard stands in opposition to Brannon.

McKelvey is perplexed as to why Gabbard would not join our congressional delegation, and other House Democrats, in opposing this disturbing appointment.

“Your refusal to stand with other Democrats in solidarity infers that you not only support Trump’s appointment, but are shifting your political views to fall in line with the incoming administration,” said McKelvey in his Nov. 17 letter.

Click to read the whole letter: Letter from Rep. McKelvey

Rep. Tsuji Remembrance Ceremony at State Capitol Dec. 2

The people of Hawaii are invited to pay their final respects to Hawaii  Island State Representative Clift Tsuji.

clift-tsujiOn Friday, December 2, a memorial service will be held in the House Chamber at the State Capitol.  A short program will begin at 10:30 a.m.  Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and following the memorial ceremony.

A book of condolence will be available for the public to sign at the ceremony.

There will be limited public parking at the State Capitol and motorists are encouraged to carpool or use public transportation.

On Sunday, December 4, a Memorial Service will be held in Hilo at Dodo Mortuary, 199 Wainaku Street in Hilo. Visitation will begin at 2:00 p.m. and the service at 4:00 p.m.

A private family burial will be held December 5.

Hawaii Congresswoman Gabbard Meets With President-Elect Trump

U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard today released the following statement on her meeting with President-elect Donald Trump regarding Syria:

hayden-and-tulsi-kneeling“President-elect Trump asked me to meet with him about our current policies regarding Syria, our fight against terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS, as well as other foreign policy challenges we face. I felt it important to take the opportunity to meet with the President-elect now before the drumbeats of war that neocons have been beating drag us into an escalation of the war to overthrow the Syrian government—a war which has already cost hundreds of thousands of lives and forced millions of refugees to flee their homes in search of safety for themselves and their families.

“While the rules of political expediency would say I should have refused to meet with President-elect Trump, I never have and never will play politics with American and Syrian lives.

“Serving the people of Hawaiʻi and our nation is an honor and responsibility that I do not take lightly.  Representing the aloha spirit and diversity of the people of Hawaiʻi, I will continue to seek common ground to deliver results that best serve all Americans, as I have tried to do during my time in Congress.

“Where I disagree with President-elect Trump on issues, I will not hesitate to express that disagreement.  However, I believe we can disagree, even strongly, but still come together on issues that matter to the American people and affect their daily lives. We cannot allow continued divisiveness to destroy our country.

“President-elect Trump and I had a frank and positive conversation in which we discussed a variety of foreign policy issues in depth. I shared with him my grave concerns that escalating the war in Syria by implementing a so-called no fly/safe zone would be disastrous for the Syrian people, our country, and the world. It would lead to more death and suffering, exacerbate the refugee crisis, strengthen ISIS and al-Qaeda, and bring us into a direct conflict with Russia which could result in a nuclear war. We discussed my bill to end our country’s illegal war to overthrow the Syrian government, and the need to focus our precious resources on rebuilding our own country, and on defeating al-Qaeda, ISIS, and other terrorist groups who pose a threat to the American people.

“For years, the issue of ending interventionist, regime change warfare has been one of my top priorities. This was the major reason I ran for Congress—I saw firsthand the cost of war, and the lives lost due to the interventionist warmongering policies our country has pursued for far too long.

“Let me be clear, I will never allow partisanship to undermine our national security when the lives of countless people lay in the balance.”