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Commander Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet and USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park Unveil New Submarine Exhibit

Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, Rear Adm. Frederick “Fritz” J. Roegge, in partnership with Chuck Merkel, executive director of the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park, unveiled a new submarine exhibit in honor of the 75th commemoration of the attack on Pearl Harbor at the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park, Dec. 6.

Rear Adm. Fredrick "Fritz" Roegge, commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, addresses guests during an unveiling of a new submarine exhibit at the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park. Dec. 7, 2016, marks the 75th anniversary of the attacks on Pearl Harbor and Oahu. The U.S. military and the State of Hawaii are hosting a series of remembrance events throughout the week to honor the courage and sacrifices of those who served Dec. 7, 1941, and throughout the Pacific theater. As a Pacific nation, the U.S. is committed to continue its responsibility of protecting the Pacific sea-lanes, advancing international ideals and relationships, well as delivering security, influence and responsiveness in the region. (Navy Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael H. Lee/Released)

Rear Adm. Fredrick “Fritz” Roegge, commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, addresses guests during an unveiling of a new submarine exhibit at the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park. Dec. 7, 2016, marks the 75th anniversary of the attacks on Pearl Harbor and Oahu. The U.S. military and the State of Hawaii are hosting a series of remembrance events throughout the week to honor the courage and sacrifices of those who served Dec. 7, 1941, and throughout the Pacific theater. As a Pacific nation, the U.S. is committed to continue its responsibility of protecting the Pacific sea-lanes, advancing international ideals and relationships, well as delivering security, influence and responsiveness in the region. (Navy Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael H. Lee/Released)

Roegge spoke to more than 150 guests, military and civilian, about the importance of the submarine force during World War II.

“Within hours of the attack, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Harold Stark ordered, ‘Execute against Japan unrestricted air and submarine warfare.’ Our submarines were the only forces able to immediately begin war patrols. They carried the battle across the Pacific and into Imperial Japanese home waters while the fleet was repaired.”

He explained that while the submarine forces made up only two percent of our entire Navy, they sank 30% of all Japanese warships, and 55% of all Japanese merchant ships sunk during the war.

“Submariners also paid the heavy price of the greatest casualty rate of any American branch of service in the war,” Roegge said. “Submariners are well-aware that the challenges of World War II produced some of our greatest successes, our greatest heroes, and our greatest sacrifices.”

In 2011 I got to tour the Submarine USS Cheyenne.

In 2011 I got to tour the Submarine USS Cheyenne.

Roegge explained the intention behind the exhibit by noting that, “It’s hard to find that important story within the existing narrative on display across the many museums and memorials that fill the horizon, and failing to highlight those details reflects a missed opportunity – not only to honor our heroes, but to share our story here at Hawaii’s most popular tourist and historical destination until today.”

Today, we begin to share that story – honoring our heroes – with a new display located in front of the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park, free and accessible to anyone visiting Pearl Harbor’s iconic landmarks.

Hawaii Department of Health Clears Marine Agrifuture to Resume Sales of Ogo and Sea Asparagus

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has lifted its Cease and Desist Order against Marine Agrifuture LLC (Olakai Farm). This morning, the company was notified it may resume the sale and distribution of Kahuku Ogo, Robusta Ogo and Sea Asparagus food products harvested at the Kahuku farm.

marine-agrifutureLaboratory test results from samples taken on Nov. 29 indicated that Marine Agrifuture’s processing areas and products were negative for Salmonella. The wells, all inlets to production ponds, and the growing and rinse tanks were also free from Salmonella and levels of indicator organisms (Enterococci and Clostridium perfringens) that would signal possible environmental contamination.

“Based on lab test results and visual confirmation by health inspectors of the thorough cleaning and improvements made to several critical components of the farm’s physical infrastructure, the department is satisfied that all reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the safety of Marine Agrifuture’a food products,” said Peter Oshiro, Food Safety Program manager. “The department will continue to work with the farm on measures to prevent any future contamination of products.”

The department has recommended the farm continue to sample and test their wells, inlets to the production areas and growing ponds, and rinse/grow tanks to insure corrective measures remain effective and sufficient. The farm is urged to share test results with DOH for compliance assistance and consultation. All components of Marine Agrifuture’s farm, piping, wells, source/rinse water, production areas, equipment and food products are subject to further periodic and unannounced testing by health inspectors. In addition, the farm is not allowed to grow or harvest any products from streams, or other areas not approved by DOH.

The Department of Health’s Sanitation Branch is a statewide program responsible for the inspection of food establishments, issuance of permits and enforcement of food safety regulations. The Branch does not conduct routine inspections or issue permits for Raw Agricultural Commodities such as fresh fruit, vegetables, and other food crops grown on farms. Educational classes on food protection and safety are provided to the public, food industry and other agencies through the branch’s Food Handlers Education Program.

Coast Guard Medevacs Ailing Crewman From Container Ship Off Oahu

The Coast Guard medevaced a 31-year-old crewman from the 902-foot container ship Kachidoki Bridge 35 miles off Oahu, Sunday.  The man, reportedly suffering from severe abdominal pain, was safely delivered to Queens Medical Center for further care.
Kachidochi Bridge

Kachidoki Bridge

“Our hoist capable helicopters and well trained crews make it possible to get mariners like this man to a higher level of medical care as quickly as possible,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Les Elliott, operations unit controller with Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center Honolulu. “The safety and well being of mariners at seas is one of our top priorities.”
Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center Honolulu originally received the request for a medevac from the crew of the vessel at 8:30 p.m. Friday. The vessel was 983 miles north of Oahu at the time. A Coast Guard flight surgeon was consulted and did not recommend an immediate medevac but did recommend the vessel make best course and speed toward Oahu and to keep the crewman comfortable as they closed the distance to Oahu.
An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point launched at 10 a.m. Sunday and rendezvoused with the vessel to transport the man. They successfully lowered the Coast Guard rescue swimmer to assess the man and prepare him for transport. During that time the helicopter suffered a malfunction and the crew was forced to conduct an emergency landing at Dillingham Airfield on the North Shore of Oahu where it will be assessed and any necessary repairs will be made. A second Dolphin and crew were launched from the air station and successfully completed the medevac.
Weather conditions at the time of the medevac were reportedly east winds at 29 mph gusting to 31 mph, with seas to 11 feet and showers. A small craft advisory is in effect through Monday afternoon.The Portuguese-flagged container vessel was en route to Los Angeles.

Rubbernecking Online – Dashcam Video of Yesterday’s 7-Car-Crash

Here is dashcam video of yesterday’s 7-car pile up on the highway over on Oahu.

car-pile-upThis could have been a lot worse then it was!

Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor Offers Special Programs for Youth to Gain a Better Understanding of the Attack on Pearl Harbor

In preparation for this year’s 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor has created three specialized programs, each designed to provide Hawaii’s youth with a better understanding and appreciation for what took place at Pearl Harbor 75 years ago.

pearl-harbor-youth-dayStudents, teachers and families are encouraged to participate in the following:

December 6, 2016 – Blackened Canteen Youth Symposium, 10 – 11:30 am, Pacific Aviation Museum Theater. For the last 21 years, WWII veterans from the United States and Japan have joined in silent prayer, pouring whiskey from a blackened canteen into the hallowed waters from the USS Arizona Memorial in observation of Dec 7. The annual Blackened Canteen ceremony, hosted by Pacific Aviation Museum, commemorates the friendship, honor, and reconciliation borne out of the horror of WWII. The canteen used in the ceremony was recovered from a B-29 bomber that was destroyed after colliding with another B-29 bomber over Shizuoka, Japan, in 1945.

Following the ceremony, a youth symposium will be held in the Pacific Aviation Museum Theater, from 10 – 11:30 am. The symposium will highlight the story and lessons of the Blackened

Canteen Ceremony, commemorating the friendship, honor and reconciliation borne out of the horror of WWII.

Students from Nagaoka, Japan and Kamehameha Schools in Honolulu will participate in the program, along with Dr. Hiroya Sugano and Jerry Yellin, WWII pilot and author of The Blackened Canteen. Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng will serve as moderator.

This event is free and open to the public. Teachers at public, private, or charter schools who register their classes for the Youth Symposium will receive The Blackened Canteen classroom curriculum and an autographed copy of the book. Additionally, the cost of bus transportation to the event will be provided for registered school groups. Curriculum materials and a video of the symposium will also be available at PacificAviationMuseum.org.  Seating is very limited.

For more information or to register for this event, please visit www.PacificAviationMuseum.org/Events/75YouthSymposium

or call Lynda Davis at 808-445-9137.

December 8-9 – Discover Pearl Harbor Youth Program, 7:30 am on 12/8 to 4 pm on 12/9. Two-day program for teens that combines engaging, aviation-related STEM activities within the historically significant context of the Pearl Harbor sites. Open to students ages 12-15, program participants will spend two days at Pacific Aviation Museum and one night onboard the USS Missouri Battleship Memorial. The program will build upon the anticipated national and international youth participation in the 75th commemoration of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Discover Pearl Harbor provides youth with a greater appreciation for the sacrifices that brought peace, and ultimately, friendship, between two nations previously at war. The cry, “Remember Pearl Harbor,” will once again serve as a vital theme, as it is now a call to action for youth to learn these stories of courage, resiliency, and innovation, and to use the lessons of WWII to create a more peaceful world. Discover Pearl Harbor offers a cross-cultural opportunity for teens to gain greater understanding about the history of WWII while also learning about the impact of scientific and technological advancements that were introduced during that era.

Students will begin the program at the WWII Valor in the Pacific National Monument where history will come to life. They will hear stories of courage and sacrifice that transformed the entire world, and will visit the USS Arizona Memorial to gain a greater appreciation for the peace and friendship that has been forged between former enemies. Their experience continues at Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor, where skilled instructors and costumed interpreters will share the legacy of Pearl Harbor through guided tours, hands-on activities, and team assignments.

In the evening, students will stay onboard the Missouri Battleship Memorial, engaging in activities that emphasize the historical precedent for peacemaking that emerged from WWII.

Day Two brings the students to the 21st century with an array of learning challenges that spotlight the role of technology in the increasingly global culture, and emphasize the need for collaboration and critical thinking. The program ends with a closing ceremony of remembrance and honor in historic Hangar 79.

Cost is $225 per student, $202.50 for museum members and includes meals, snacks, overnight accommodations and program on the USS Missouri Battleship, program materials and souvenir T-shirt.

Registration is limited to 50 youth.

December 10, 2016 – Pearl Harbor Youth day, 9 am – 3:30 pm. Families and visitors of all ages can explore the lessons and legacy of WWII through special presentations, exhibits, and hands-on activities. Event will engage and educate youth about the history of Pearl Harbor and its impact on young people in Hawaii and throughout the Pacific.

Featured activities include:

  • Special screening of “Under the Blood Red Sun,” followed by a presentation and Q & A session with author Graham Salisbury.
  • Historical exhibits designed and created by local high school students.
  • Thematic tours of the Museum
  • Costumed interpreters and historical demonstrations

Event is free to students 18 years and younger, free with museum admission, and free to museum members. Registration required for teachers and youth organizations that are interested in bringing large groups and wish to apply for funding assistance for bus transportation.

For more information or to register for these events, please visit www.PacificAviationMuseum.org/Events/75YouthDay or call Lynda Davis at 808-445-9137.

Public Hearing Nov. 17 for the North Shore Watershed Management Plan

The State Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM) will hold a public hearing to receive public testimony on the North Shore Watershed Management Plan, on Thursday, November 17, 2016.

north-shore-watershedThe watershed management plan was developed to guide the long-range development and conservation of resources in the North Shore district and includes strategies to protect and enhance the health of the regional watersheds.

It  is one of eight regional plans that together will comprise the updated water use and development plan for the City and County of Honolulu, which is a component of the Hawai‘i Water Plan.

The hearing will be held at 6 p.m. on Thursday, November 17, 2016 at Waialua Elementary School, 67-020 Waialua Beach Road, Waialua, Hawaii 96791.

The plan was prepared by the Honolulu Board of Water Supply in collaboration with the City and County of Honolulu Department of Planning and Permitting,

“This plan will provide valuable guidance to the Water Commission as it strives to balance the water needs of people and the environment, while seeking to ensure the sustainability of natural resources,” said Deputy Director Jeff Pearson.

A public review draft of the North Shore Watershed Management Plan is available online at the CWRM website: http://www.hawaii.gov/dlnr/cwrm/  The public review draft may also be reviewed at the CWRM office at the Kalanimoku building, Room 227, 1151 Punchbowl Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813.

All interested persons are urged to attend the hearing and submit comments, orally or in writing.  The CWRM will continue to accept written testimony until December 1, 2016.  Testimony should be mailed to the Commission on Water Resource Management, State Department of Land and Natural Resources, P.O. Box 621, Honolulu, Hawaii 96809, or may be submitted via email at dlnr.cwrm@hawaii.gov.

Disabled individuals planning to attend the public hearing are asked to contact the CWRM (at the above address or phone 808-587-0214) at least three days in advance of the public hearing to indicate if they have special needs that require accommodation.

Honolulu City Council Approves $1 Million Dollar Settlement – Woman Struck by City Garbage Truck

Attorney Michael Cruise of Honolulu personal injury law firm Leavitt, Yamane & Soldner recently obtained a $1 million settlement for the estate and surviving sons of 70-year-old Barbara N. Kato, a Honolulu woman who was struck and killed by a garbage truck while crossing the street at a crosswalk.

north-kingAccording to court documents, the accident occurred in the early morning hours of February 27, 2014 as she crossed North King Street at Gulick Avenue. The driver of the truck, Denise A. Kekumu, had been attempting to turn left onto Gulick when she struck the pedestrian. Ms. Kato died three hours later.

Kekumu had a history of eight prior avoidable accidents while driving a garbage truck, including hitting walls and parked cars. Because a driver’s violations are expunged after two years under a union contract, Kekumu’s driving skills never got the attention they needed. According to Cruise, the city “end[s] up with at least some drivers that have pretty bad driving histories and they’re not getting retrained … it’s a public safety issue.”

The Honolulu City Council unanimously approved the settlement on November 2, 2016, calling the accident a “clear case of negligence.” Mr. Cruise, the attorney for Ms. Kato’s estate and her sons, Keith and Kevin, said that he hopes that the city will take action to prevent another accident like this from occurring in the future. He pointed out that this accident was the third within 12 months involving a pedestrian struck by a city refuse truck.

Kekumu has been disciplined as a result of the incident.

Native Plant Enthusiasts Invited to Annual Oahu Arbor Day Plant Sale Tomorrow

The public is invited to the annual Arbor Day plant sale on Friday, November 4 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife O‘ahu plant nursery at 2135 Makiki Heights Dr., in Honolulu.

hayden-arbor-dayNative plant fans can find 4 in. – 1 gallon standard pot sized white hibiscus, ‘a‘ali‘i, red ‘ohi‘a, ukiuki, native grasses and sedges, as well as red ti.

Some of the plants available are larger (3 ft. – 5 ft.) yellow ‘ohi‘a, koa, koaia (dryland koa), and hibiscus clayi. Cash or checks are accepted, no credit cards.

People are advised to park along the lower roadway and parking area since parking at the forestry office and nursery is tight.  For more information call 973-9778.

Hawaii National Guard Receives Three New Blackhawk Helicopters

The Hawaii Army National Guard’s newest unit has received three HH-60M Blackhawk helicopters. The Blackhawks were offloaded from a C-17 transport at the Kalaeloa Airfield today. They will be assembled on-site and operate out of Wheeler Army Air Field until a new facility at Kalaeloa is completed.

new-helisDetachment 1, Company G, 1st Battalion, 189th Aviation Regiment is a new aeromedical evacuation unit and is in the process of filling its ranks. The detachment’s mission is to provide MEDEVAC support to military entities. The unit will have about 30 soldiers, most of whom will be drill status, or part-time forces.  The unit will not provide full-time support to civil authorities, but when fully staffed, it may provide supplemental support.

This unit is one of the most requested types of units to deploy, with its specialty of MEDEVAC being in high demand.

new-helis2

The new Blackhawk models have a couple of features that differentiate them from the HIARNG’s current UH-60M Blackhawks. These HH-60M have an external hoist, a Forward Looking Infrared Radar (FLIR) and the capability to carry six litter patients or six ambulatory (or three of each patients) within its MEDEVAC cabin configuration. The four-person crew is made up of two pilots, one crew chief and one flight medic.

It will initially operate from Wheeler Army Airfield, Army Aviation Support Facility #1, until administrative requirements are completed. The new unit will then operate from the nearly completed Army Aviation Support Facility located at Kalaeloa. The Kalaeloa AASF cost $32.6 million and is being built by Watts Constructors, LLC. The estimated completion date is November 2016. The Kalaeloa AASF will encompass almost 67,000 square feet and will have a large hangar to support aircraft as well as an administrative area for classrooms, restrooms, conference rooms and offices.

Hawaii Supreme Court Holds Oral Argument at McKinley High School

As part of the Judiciary’s Courts in the Community outreach program, the Hawaii Supreme Court heard oral argument today at McKinley High School.

mckinleyAbout 470 students from McKinley High School, St. Andrew’s Priory, Saint Francis School, Kamehameha Schools – Kapālama, Damien Memorial School, Hālau Kū Māna Charter School, University Laboratory School, and Farrington High School, as well as Mid-Pacific Institute, had the opportunity to learn more about the Judiciary’s role in government and its function in resolving disputes in a democratic society.

Under the program, the Hawaii Supreme Court convenes in schools to hear oral argument in cases pending before the court. This is the eighth argument in the program, which began in 2012.  To prepare, the participating juniors and seniors from each school studied a curriculum developed by the Kamehameha V Judiciary History Center and the Students for Public Outreach and Civic Education of the University of Hawaii’s William S. Richardson School of Law.

mckinley-closeupsAttorneys from the Hawaii State Bar Association also volunteered their time and facilitated a moot court activity in the participating classrooms, where the students had the opportunity to argue the case themselves before attending the Courts in the Community event.

mckinley1“Our Courts in the Community program is about hands-on civics education and providing students with a chance to go beyond the textbooks by observing a real Supreme Court oral argument in person. Through this experience, we hope that the students realize it is a process with integrity, one that’s designed to get the truth. That understanding is vital to the future of our democracy,” said Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald. “I would like to extend a special mahalo to the teachers, the Hawaii State Bar Association, and the dozens of volunteer attorneys who helped make this happen. These invaluable partnerships are what make the program a success.”

mckinley2The Hawaii State Bar Association (HSBA) and the Hawaii State Bar Foundation generously provided the students with lunches and transportation to and from their schools on Oahu.

“I’d like to thank our attorneys who enthusiastically volunteered to visit participating classrooms for pre-event discussions and preparations,” said Jodi Lei Kimura Yi, HSBA President. “It was exciting to see the students intently following the arguments and asking very probing questions after the official court proceedings.”

mckinley-vipThe court heard oral argument in the case of State v. Trinque. Oral argument was followed by two separate question-and-answer sessions for the students; one with the attorneys and another with the five justices.

Public Input Sought on Draft Management Plan for Pahole Natural Area Reserve

A draft management plan to help in the restoration and recovery of many rare plants and animals in the Pahole Natural Area Reserve (NAR) of O‘ahu’s Waianae mountain range is now available for public review and comment.  The plan, prepared by the Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW), outlines the planned management activities in the reserve over the next 15 years. It is part of a series of site-specific plans to be prepared by DOFAW for natural area reserves throughout the state.

paholePahole Natural Area Reserve is situated on the northeastern face of the Wai‘anae Mountain Range in the district of Waialua on the island of O‘ahu. The 658 acre reserve was created to protect lowland native dry to moist forests, including rare and endangered plants and animals. These forests are noted for their species diversity and richness, and are becoming increasingly uncommon. The overall goal of the management plan is to protect, maintain, and enhance the reserve’s unique natural, cultural, and geological resources.

“Drier Hawaiian forest types are particularly susceptible to disturbance. Despite being an actively managed natural area reserve for 35 years, species have declined and habitat has been lost due to threats including invasive species. This plan will focus our efforts to effectively preserve the native resources that remain for future generations,” said Marigold Zoll, DOFAW O‘ahu branch manager.

Management of Pahole NAR, as proposed in the draft plan, will help the restoration and recovery of many rare plants and animals. One of the rarest endemic plant species found in the Reserve, Cyanea superba subsp. superba, had not been seen in the Waianae Mountains for decades before being found in Pahole in 1971. By 1978, there were only 36 plants remaining and by 2002, the plant was extinct in the wild.  Fortunately, this rare plant was successfully propagated off-site and over 1,400 plants have since been restored to the wild at protected and managed sites in Pahole NAR and elsewhere in the Wai‘anae Mountains.

The Natural Area Reserves System was created in 1971 by the Hawai‘i State Legislature to preserve in perpetuity specific land and water areas which support communities, as relatively unmodified as possible, of the natural flora and fauna, as well as geological sites, of Hawai‘i. The system presently consists of 21 reserves on five islands, encompassing more than 123,000 acres of the State’s most unique ecosystems. These diverse areas range from marine and coastal environments to alpine desert and from fresh lava flows to ancient wet forests. These reserves often serve as habitat for rare native plants and animals, many of which are on the verge of extinction.

The management plan approval process includes review by DOFAW branch and administrative staff, partner agency and public consultation, approval by the administrator of DOFAW, and finally approval by the Board of Land and Natural Resources.

The draft management plan is available on the DOFAW website at the following link: https://dlnr.hawaii.gov/ecosystems/files/2016/10/PaholeDraftManagementPlan.pdf

Please submit written comments via email or letter by November 18, 2016 to:

Tanya Rubenstein, Natural Area Reserves Project Coordinator
Tanya.Rubenstein@hawaii.gov
Division of Forestry and Wildlife
1151 Punchbowl Street, Room 325
Honolulu, HI 96813

Enterprise Truck Rental Opens First Hawaii Location

Enterprise Truck Rental opened its first location in Hawaii this month. The new branch – located at 3250 Ualena Street in Honolulu – is close to the city’s main airport and cruise port, providing convenience and accessibility for truck rental customers. Enterprise Truck Rental is a service of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, which has delivered local transportation solutions in Hawaii for nearly 25 years.

truck-rentals“As our car rental business in Hawaii has grown, we’ve also experienced increased customer demand for other transportation options, including light- and medium-duty truck rentals,” said Andrew Shults, Enterprise Group Truck Manager in Hawaii.

The 30,000-square-foot Honolulu truck rental facility carries light- and medium-duty vehicles – including cargo vans, pickup trucks, flatbeds and small box trucks – with plans to expand the fleet to include larger box trucks and refrigerated units within the next year. The branch also offers vehicles with hydraulic lift gates and tow-capability. Enterprise will work with local service shops and other area vendors to maintain the vehicles.

“At Enterprise, we are committed to listening to our customers in order to meet their transportation needs,” Shults said. “Whether a customer needs a short-term truck rental to move personal goods or a long-term truck rental for business, we now offer solutions to meet those needs.”

The new Honolulu Enterprise Truck Rental branch is open from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturday. It is closed on Sunday.

Kaiser High Hosts Cultural Exchange With Students From Japan

Kaiser High’s gymnasium was filled anticipation and excitement this morning as the school welcomed more than 300 students from Hokkaido Sapporo Intercultural & Technological High School (HSITHS). The visitors arrived for cultural exchange activities, which included musical performances, speeches and traditional Japanese dance demonstrations.

kaiser-elementary2Before the assembly started sophomore Noah Matsumoto said, “I’m looking forward to meeting the students from Hokkaido. I’m Japanese and have never been to Japan, so it’ll be interesting to have a chance to talk with them and learn about their culture and be able to teach them about ours.”

kaiser-elementary3The group comprised of 13 dignitaries from Hokkaido including Vice Governor Yoshihiro Yamaya who presented a gift to Principal Justin Mew and shared his goal of increasing educational opportunities between Hokkaido and Hawaii.

“Sharing music is a wonderful way to showcase any culture,” said Principal Mew. “We were honored to be able to make our visitors feel welcomed this morning by having our Kaiser High band play the Hokkaido school song to conclude the assembly. It was heartwarming to hear their song and our alma mater played with such pride in front of a packed gym.”

MCLC at Kaiser High.

MCLC at Kaiser High.

Following the assembly, students spread out in small groups throughout the campus to discuss a variety of topics such as Foreign Studies, Science, Engineering, and Global Business. The students also discussed pop culture.

“I was really excited to talk to the students from Hokkaido about fashion,” said sophomore Grailee Caldwell. “This was an incredible opportunity and experience because we were able to meet with them one-on-one and really get to talk about our similarities and differences, like our high school experiences.”

This morning’s cultural exchange was part of ongoing efforts to establish a Sister-State agreement between Hokkaido and Hawaii in 2017. It will be the fifth prefecture in Japan to establish a formal relationship with the State.

The Hokkaido students will be in Hawaii until Oct. 23. Their only school visit was with Kaiser High because of the school’s prestigious International Baccalaureate accreditation.

For more information about Kaiser High School, visit www.kaiserhighschoolhawaii.org. Information about the State of Hawaii’s current Sister-States is available at http://bit.ly/2ed14Sl.

Donations Secured to Replace Kids Stolen Laptops

Senator Donovan M. Dela Cruz  secured donations to help in replacing some of the 27 Chromebooks that were taken in a burglary at Wahiawa Middle School last month. Sen. Dela Cruz and the Leilehua Alumni and Community Association will be launching a fundraising drive to raise additional funds to replace the remaining stolen items.

chromebookThe computers that were stolen are needed for a proper learning environment. Sen. Dela Cruz, who is an alumnus of Wahiawa Middle, wanted to act quickly so students would not be without the computers for a long period.

“As schools move forward with an education based in science, technology, engineering, and math, the right equipment is vital to building their skills,” said Sen. Dela Cruz. “The Leilehua Alumni and Community Association will play a critical role as schools make this transition. Whether it be donating computers or receiving grants for educational programs, the Association exists to assist all schools in the Leilehua complex.”

Additional Chromebooks, along with a MacBook Pro laptop, and an LCD projector are still needed. The Leilehua Alumni and Community Association is asking the community to make a small donation so they can continue to support our students. More information on the fundraising drive is forthcoming.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call the Honolulu Police Department. Police are still seeking leads on the suspects wanted for the burglary.

Hawaii World Class Wedding Expo This Weekend

Are you a bride looking for ideas for your special day?  Check out the Ko’olau Ballroom and Conference Center’s booth this weekend at the Hawaii World Class Wedding Expo at the Hawaii Convention Center!

wedding-expo

October 21-22, 2016 doors open on Friday, at 6:00pm and on Saturday, the expo runs from 11:00am–5:00pm!

Tickets $10.00 at the door. Fashion show times:

  • Friday, Oct.21st – 8:00pm
  • Saturday, Oct. 22nd – 8:00pm

Hepatitis A Infection in Food Service Worker at McDonald’s of Kahala

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has confirmed an additional case of hepatitis A in an Oahu food service worker. The infected case is an employee at McDonald’s of Kahala, located at 4618 Kilauea Avenue in Honolulu. Affected dates of service are Sept. 20–21, 23–24, 27–29, and Oct. 1, 4–5, 7, and 11, 2016.

kahala-mcdonalds“This case was identified and reported to us later in their illness, but had their symptom onset within the 50-day maximum incubation period from the date the scallops were embargoed,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park. “The department will continue to investigate all reported cases of hepatitis A and remain alert for other late-presenting cases as well as secondary cases.”

The likelihood that patrons of this business will become infected is very low. DOH is providing this information to the public as a precaution to prevent any new cases. To date, 291 cases of hepatitis A have been confirmed as part of the outbreak investigation that began in August. Updated case counts and information are provided at: http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/hepatitis-a-outbreak-2016.

Vaccination provides the best protection from hepatitis A, so any person who consumed food or beverage products prepared or served at this business during the identified periods may want to contact their healthcare providers about receiving a vaccine or immune globulin (IG). This may provide some protection against the disease if administered within two weeks after exposure. A statewide list of vaccinating pharmacies is available at http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/files/2013/07/IMM_Adult_Resource_List.pdf or by calling the Aloha United Way information and referral line at 2-1-1.

Help prevent the spread of hepatitis A by washing your hands often and thoroughly, especially after using the bathroom and before preparing food. For more information on proper handwashing, go to: http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/dib/infectious-disease-surveillance/handwashing.

Hawaii Department of Health Cites Companies for HI-5 Violations

The Hawai‘i State Department of Health (DOH) has issued Notices of Violation and Order against six companies for failure to submit payments and reports required of beverage distributors by the State’s Deposit Beverage Container law.

hi-5The companies were delinquent for the semi-annual reporting period of Jan. 1 to June 30, 2016 and each company was fined an administrative penalty fee of $400 for failure to comply with deposit container requirements. Each company may request a hearing to contest the alleged facts and penalty.

The companies cited were:

  • Arakaki Store, Inc.
  • Hawaiian Fresh Farm dba Culture Brew
  • La Hiki Ola
  • Williams-Sonoma
  • World of Aahs!
  • World Pac, Inc.

Hawai‘i Revised Statutes §342G-105 requires beverage distributors to submit semi-annual distributor reports and payments to DOH no later than the 15th calendar day of the month following the end of the payment period. DOH conducts regular inspections of beverage distributors and certified redemption centers to ensure compliance with Hawai‘i laws. The companies received multiple written notices informing them of reporting requirements prior to the issuance of a penalty.

Hawaii DOE Renames School to Honor Late US Senator Daniel K. Inouye

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) celebrated the renaming of Daniel K. Inouye Elementary School, formerly Hale Kula Elementary, this morning with a special ceremony and unveiling of the school’s multimillion-dollar renovation. The Hawaii State Board of Education approved the renaming earlier this year in honor of the late US Senator and his contributions to public education and military-impacted families and students in Hawaii.

Dignitaries, administrators and students help Sen. Inouye's son, Ken, unveil the new school sign. Photo Credits: Department of Education

Dignitaries, administrators and students help Sen. Inouye’s son, Ken, unveil the new school sign. Photo Credits: Department of Education

“Senator Inouye was a stanch supporter of our public schools, and his commitment to education has resulted in millions of dollars in federal resources for our students,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “It is an honor to name the school after Hawaii’s beloved Senator, and we are proud to be able to carry on his legacy through the work of our administrators, teachers and students.”

Daniel K. Inouye Elementary is located at Schofield Barracks, which was the home the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the unit that Senator Inouye served in during World War II. The school recently underwent a $33.2 million dollar renovation, which was funded largely by the U.S. Department of Defense ($26.6 million) and HIDOE ($6.6 million). The upgrades included a new two-story classroom building, student center, additional classrooms, library-media center, a new covered play court, and facelifts to the administration building and existing classrooms.

“This school has historic ties to Senator Inouye,” Principal Jan Iwase said. “This school was opened in 1959 when Hawaii became a state and Senator Inouye was first elected to Washington. He always cared about education and the military, and this campus is a combination of both.”

Ken Inouye shared that his father would be grateful for the naming of the school adding, “My father would always say that education isn’t just about learning – it’s about transformation.”

The senator’s family donated several items to the school that are featured for students and visitors to see, including Senator Inouye’s Purple Heart, photos and military coins he earned in the military as given while a lawmaker.

Major General Christopher Cavoli praised the renaming of the school stating, “His legacy showed each of us that service is at the heart of a community. I don’t believe there is a more fitting role-model for the students who learn within these walls.”

  Photo #1 The remodeled library is just one part of the multimillion-dollar campus-wide renovation.


Photo #1
The remodeled library is just one part of the multimillion-dollar campus-wide renovation.

The school’s new buildings include state of the art designs that allow for natural lighting, and heat reducing roofing material.

Daniel K. Inouye Elementary School currently services more than 800 students from special education pre-school to fifth grade. For more information about the school, visit http://www.inouye.k12.hi.us/.

Department of Health Workers Doing Door-to-Door Surveys Saturday on Oahu

Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) workers and Medical Reserve Corps volunteers will be canvassing neighborhoods in McCully-Moiliili, Makiki-Lower Punchbowl, and Ala Moana-Kakaako on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon to conduct a Community Health Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER). Participation in the door-to-door survey is confidential and voluntary.

department-of-healthHousehold in these areas can expect to see teams of two volunteers wearing DOH identification badges and carrying clip boards. The purpose of this survey, or CASPER, is to gain a clearer picture of possible public health needs in case of an emergency or disaster. The survey includes general questions about household size, makeup and existing emergency preparations. The information gathered will help DOH and state and county partners better understand how Honolulu communities prepare for public health emergencies to then better shape response and recovery plans.

The pilot project was presented at a McCully/Moiliili neighborhood board and other meetings in the past months to encourage participation and collaboration. Project results will be shared with the respective area neighborhood boards and state and county emergency management agency partners. For more information, contact the Public Health Preparedness Branch at (808) 587-6569.

The Department of Health’s Public Health Preparedness Branch is funded by a Hospital Preparedness Program – Public Health Emergency Preparedness cooperative agreement with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Through the grant, the branch works to prepare for, respond to, and assist in recovery from natural and human-caused public health emergencies and threats.

The Hawaii Medical Reserve Corps has local volunteer members throughout the state and is housed within the Public Health Preparedness Branch. Volunteers are asked to attend quarterly meetings, participate in disaster preparedness exercises, and assist with non-emergency community health activities, such as the Stop Flu at School program, vision screening clinics, and community health fairs.

Hawaii Innocence Project Event Will Test Reliability of Eyewitness Identification

Could you be a reliable eyewitness? Want to test your skills with some expert attorneys?

eyewitnees-identification

On Tuesday, October 4, 2016, in recognition of “International Wrongful Conviction Day,” the Hawai‘i Innocence Project will challenge audience members to see how well they can identify a possible suspect in a mock exercise at the UH Law School.

The program, titled “Eyewitness Identification,” is scheduled from 12 noon to 1:15 p.m. in Classroom 2.  Lunch is available in the courtyard; donations are welcome.  Similar programs are taking place across the nation and around the world.

“Eyewitness Identification” aims to demonstrate pitfalls in the standard technique that has been used in courtrooms for decades. Documentation has begun to show that faulty eyewitness identification accounts for as much as 75 percent of all wrongful convictions, according to Innocence Project data.

The Hawai‘i Innocence Project is run by faculty members at the William S. Richardson School of Law, with assistance from community attorneys. In 2011, using advanced DNA testing technology, the Hawai‘i project succeeded in having Alvin Francis Jardine exonerated after he spent almost 20 years in prison for a rape and burglary he consistently maintained that he did not commit. The national organization has freed several hundred wrongly incarcerated people by using advanced DNA testing.

As part of the national Innocence Project network, Faculty Specialist Kenneth Lawson and Associate Dean Ronette Kawakami head the project and work with other attorneys on cases in Hawai‘i.  Said Law Dean Avi Soifer, “Our faculty and students, along with our cooperating attorneys, deserve great admiration for their passionate, tireless work to free those who have been unjustly imprisoned.”

The October 4 program will help show just how fallible eyewitness testimony can be.