Mayor Kim’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 7

On March 4, 2020, Governor David Y. Ige declared a state of emergency in Hawaiʻi in response to the public health threat posed by COVID-19. In response to the state of emergency posed by COVID-19, I issued an Emergency Proclamation, Supplemental Proclamations, and Emergency Rules 1, 2, 3, 4, Amendment to Rule 4, 5, and 6. 

Pursuant to the authority vested in me by Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes Chapter 127A-25 and due to the continued public health concerns related to COVID-19, I hereby find that immediate promulgation of this rule is necessary and do so in order to protect the health, safety and welfare of the people of this County. This rule amends Mayor’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 4 dated May 6, 2020, related to County parks and recreational facilities (Section II.7) and rescinds Amendment to Mayor’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 4 dated May 19, 2020. This rule also extends Mayor’s Covid-19 Emergency Rules 4 and 5 to June 30, 2020.

Section II.7 of Mayor’s Covid-19 Emergency Rule No. 4, dated May 6, 2020 and Amendment to Mayor’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 4 dated May 19, 2020, are hereby rescinded and replaced as follows: 

7. Parks and Recreational Facilities:

a. All County of Hawaiʻi parks and recreational facilities: (1) listed specifically in Hawaiʻi County Code, Chapter 15 Parks & Recreation, Article 3, Section 15-68.1 “parks and recreational facility schedule,” or (2) as defined by Hawaiʻi County Code, Chapter 15, Article 1, Section 15-3 as a “park area” or “recreational area” are OPENED from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. pursuant to the following requirements, unless addressed separately hereinafter:

  • i. Social distancing requirements contained in Governor David Y. Ige’s 8th Supplementary Emergency Proclamation, as amended or superseded, shall be followed;
  • ii. No gathering of more than 10 persons is permitted;
  • iii. No organized sports activities are permitted;
  • iv. No contact sports are permitted
  • v. No camping or use of any grills is permitted;
  • vi. No erection of canopies larger than 10’x10’ is permitted;
  • vii. No use of pavilions or shade structures is permitted;
  • viii. All permits and reservations for use associated with all park sites and recreational facilities are cancelled through June 30, 2020; and
  • ix. Commercial activities may resume, subject to approval of the Director of Parks and Recreation and provided they adhere to applicable industry standards, CDC guidance, and State and County requirements.

b. The following County of Hawaiʻi parks and recreational facilities remain closed to the general public:

  • i. All community centers and senior centers
  • ii. All gymnasiums and covered play court facilities and Waiākea Recreation Center
  • iii. All swimming pools
  • iv. Hakalau Beach Park (previously closed)
  • v. Ho‘olulu Complex; excluding the outdoor tennis courts
  • vi. Kūhiō Kalaniana‘ole Park (construction)
  • vii. Laurence J. Capellas Ballfield (site shared with DOE)
  • viii. Pana‘ewa Rainforest Zoo & Gardens (construction)
  • ix. Shipman Gym (site shared with DOE)
  • x. Waiākea Waena Park (site shared with DOE)

The Director of Parks and Recreation may authorize specific uses of the above-listed facilities for County-operated programs and services.c. The following County of Hawai‘i parks and recreational facilities remain closed to the general public, Mondays through Fridays, for the safe operation of approved childcare programs:

  • i. Greenwell Park & Sgt. Rodney J. T. Yano Memorial Hall
  • ii. Waiākea Uka Park & Stanley Costales Waiākea Uka Gym
  • iii. Waimea Community Center

d. The following County of Hawai‘i parks and recreational facilities may open for specific, limited term uses pursuant to requests for use approved by the Director of Parks & Recreation:

  • i. All rodeo arenas
  • ii. Hilo Drag Strip
  • iii. Hilo Skeet Range

Requests for use of the above-listed facilities requires a comprehensive plan to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of participants and support individuals that includes, but is not limited to: (1) restrictions on gathering; (2) enforcement of social distancing requirements; (3) strategies for disinfecting/sanitization of all common touch surfaces; and (4) preclusion of spectators, and other considerations as may be applicable to the use/venue. 

e. All County cemeteries, including veterans’ cemeteries administered by the County, remains open for visitation during their standard hours of operation. 

f. The Pana‘ewa Equestrian Center remains open only for those persons with valid horse stall rental agreements that are actively boarding a horse or storing authorized equipment/supplies at the facility. 

g. The Hilo Municipal Golf Course remains open with modified rules for play in effect. The golf pro shop concession and restaurant concession may resume modified operations and hours subject to approval of the Director of Parks and Recreation 

h. All other State or County restrictions related to COVID-19 must be followed, including, but not limited to, applicable quarantine restrictions.

This section is subject to specific park closures as designated by the County of Hawaiʻi Department of Parks and Recreation and supersedes any conflicting County of Hawai‘i emergency rule provision.

Pursuant to Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes Section §127A-29, any person violating this Rule shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction, fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

This rule shall take effect June 1, 2020 and shall continue through June 30, 2020 unless extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended by my subsequent order, or as otherwise provided by law. Mayor’s COVID Emergency Rules 4 and 5 shall continue through June 30, 2020 unless extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended by my subsequent order, or as otherwise provided by law.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the County of Hawaiʻi to be affixed. Done this 29th day of May 2020 in Hilo, Hawaiʻi. 

Harry Kim
Mayor 
County of Hawaiʻi 

CONCURRENCE:
Governor David Y. IgeView the signed Mayorʻs COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 7

Service Restrictions at Solid Waste Transfer Stations Continue

Due to COVID-19 concerns, the Solid Waste Division continues to suspend the following programs and services:

Electronic Device Recycling Collection

Greenwaste Collection is suspended at Keaʻau and Volcano Transfer Stations, but continues to be offered at:

East Hawaiʻi Organics Facility, 7:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. daily (7 days a week)
West Hawai‘i Organics Facility, 7:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Monday through Saturday
Kealakehe, Waimea, and Pāhoa Transfer Stations:  8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sunday, Wednesday, and Saturday
Keʻei Transfer Station: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sunday, Tuesday, and Friday

Scrap Metal and White Goods Collection is suspended at all county transfer stations. 

Please visit https://www.hawaiizerowaste.org/recycle/scrap-metal/ for a list of other metal recyclers.  

Residents are encouraged to use the other service providers or hold onto their items until collection at transfer stations resume. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and understanding as we tackle the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Please visit our www.hawaiizerowaste.org website for locations and future closure information.

County of Hawaii Announces Summer Fun Program

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation announces its 2020 Summer Fun program will begin Monday, June 15 for a minimum of five weeks, tentatively ending on Friday, July 17.  

The program will run from 8 a.m. to noon Monday to Friday and include a snack and take home-lunch. Enrollment is open to children who have completed 3rd, 4th, 5th or 6th grade this past school year. The program will be hosted at 13 park facilities around the Island.  There is NO CHARGE for this program.

Enrollment will begin on Wednesday, June 3 at 7:45 a.m. and close on Thursday, June 4 at 4:30 p.m. Enrollment will be accepted from parents/guardians via electronic submission at www.hawaiicounty.gov/summer-fun or by calling the Recreation Division at 961-8740 (During business hours only: 7:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Note: information left on voicemail will not be accepted.) 

Online enrollment is strongly encouraged as staff availability to take phone calls and process enrollments is limited. No walk-in enrollment applications will be accepted, participants are limited to enrolling at one site and each enrollment application allows for up to 4 children from the same household.

Participants at each site will be chosen via a random selection method as space is limited. Selected participants will be contacted by Recreation staff by Wednesday, June 10, at which time an appointment for submitting completed registration forms will be arranged.  All other enrollees will be placed on a waitlist should a program site determine it is able to expand or if prior selected participants exit the program.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s Summer Fun program will be significantly modified to address the health and safety of program participants and staff.  The program will adhere to all federal, state and county level rules and standard for safe operation, as appropriate. along with various applicable industries and organizations. 

This includes screening each morning prior to entry, a mandatory face mask/cover policy, physical distancing during program activities and enhanced sanitization procedures.  The State of Hawai‘i Department of Health’s “Guidelines for Child Care Facilities to Reopen or Continue Care” will be incorporated, as appropriate.

The Summer Fun program may be extended up to an additional 2 weeks, through July 31, at some or all the sites should resources become available.  Participants will be notified when a determination is made for their specific program site.

The following is a list of this year’s proposed Summer Fun program sites:

• Andrews Gym/Waiākea Waena Park
• Pana‘ewa Covered Courts / Pana‘ewa Park
• Kawananakoa Center / Hualani Park
• Pi‘ihonua Gym / Gilbert Carvalho Park
• Pāpa‘ikou Gym / Frank M. Santos Park
• Honoka‘a Gym / Honoka‘a Park
• Waimea District Park
• Ikuo Hisaoka Gym / Kamehameha Park
• Kekuaokalani Gym / Kailua Park
• Nā‘ālehu Community Center / Nā‘ālehu Park
• Rep. Robert N. Herkes Gymnasium & Shelter (Ka‘ū District Gym)
• Pāhoa Neighborhood Facility / Pāhoa District Park
• Herbert Shipman Park / Kea‘au Armory

For more information contact the Recreation Division at 961-8740 or via email at recreation@hawaiicounty.gov 

SURVEY: Most Hawaii Residents Recognize COVID-19 as Serious Concern & Adhere to Social Distancing

According to a statewide survey recently commissioned by the Hawai‘i Department of Health (DOH), the majority of Hawai‘i residents (93%) consider COVID-19 to be a “very serious” or “somewhat serious” health concern, and three quarters (75%) believe it poses a real danger or threat to themselves or others living in their household. However, only 44% of respondents say they are practicing social distancing guidelines suggested by government officials and healthcare professionals “all of the time.”

The 25% of respondents who say they do not feel threatened by COVID-19 cited reasons for their belief: They are following CDC guidelines, believe they are healthy and unlikely to get sick, do not venture outside their home much, or do not trust reports about the severity of the disease.

Click to view summary

There were notable differences in perceptions between the neighbor islands and O‘ahu, with 81% of neighbor islanders saying they consider COVID-19 to be a “very serious” concern, versus 69% of O‘ahu residents surveyed.

“The findings provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of our efforts to educate our community about the disease. This is especially important as we begin to reopen parks, businesses and other places where people congregate,” said Bruce Anderson, Director of Health. “For our state to fully reopen and start the road to economic recovery, all of our residents must recognize the seriousness of the pandemic and be willing to make necessary lifestyle changes to prevent a second wave of increased cases.”

The survey results validate that the DOH is reaching a majority —or 95%—of Hawai‘i residents with its messages related to COVID-19 mitigation practices. Respondents who were able to recall DOH’s public health messaging are more likely to adhere to social distancing guidelines “all of the time.” Those who remembered a public service announcement featuring Frank De Lima—part of the DOH’s “Stay Healthy, Stay at Home” campaign—are more likely to recognize COVID-19 as a threat to their households and to correctly identify symptoms associated with the virus.

Statewide, nearly half (44%) of those polled believe they are following social distancing guidelines “all of the time,” while slightly more than half (51%) say they do so “most of the time.” Still, when presented with a list of suggested actions, 26% of those polled say they are not standing six feet or farther apart “all of the time.” Among those who are not routinely following social distancing guidelines, 21% do not recall DOH messages.

“These findings underscore the importance of outreach and education, especially now during this time of uncertainty and changing recommendations,” Anderson said. “We will continue to invest in public health education and assess the effectiveness of our efforts as we head into the state’s recovery and reopening phase.”

DOH’s COVID-19 campaigns include public service announcements on television, radio, digital and print that promote everyday prevention, physical activity, connectedness, mental health, and family strengthening. Additional efforts are underway focusing on younger audiences and other groups with lower levels of awareness and compliance with social distancing guidelines. Public service announcements can be viewed at HawaiiCOVID19.com/Resources.

DOH commissioned Anthology Research to conduct a quantitative study of Hawai‘i residents using both phone interviews and online surveys. A total of 545 surveys were conducted from April 17 to 23, 2020. Respondents were screened to ensure they were at least 18 years of age and a full-time Hawai‘i resident. The margin of error for a sample of this size is +/- 4.20 percentage points with a 95% confidence level. View the Executive Summary here.

Honolulu to Receive Nearly $6 Million to Improve Public Transit System With New Zero-Emission Buses

Today, U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D- Hawai‘i) announced that the City and County of Honolulu is set to receive $5,940,005 in new federal funding to acquire six zero-emission buses and necessary on-road charging facilities. These new buses will run 24 hours daily on Route 40 between Makaha and Downtown Honolulu, helping people get to work and visit local businesses.

“Improving our public transit system with electric buses means that we can provide affordable transportation while reducing our carbon footprint,” said Sen. Schatz, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “This new federal funding will make it easier for workers to commute and customers to visit local businesses while making our roads cleaner and quieter in the process.”

“Honolulu’s public transportation is one of the best in the nation, with some of the most professional and dedicated drivers for both TheBus and TheHandi-Van. Even under the most difficult of circumstances our drivers drive with aloha, and always show aloha to their riders. This federal grant will help build Honolulu’s public transportation toward a greener, brighter and safer operations fleet; moving the people of Honolulu to where they need to be,” said Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell.

These funds will be used by the City and County of Honolulu Department of Transportation Services to purchase or lease six 40-foot electric buses and support facilities at the Alapa‘i Transit Center. This is the first phase of Honolulu’s plan to make Route 40 entirely electric and transition to a zero-emission fleet within the next 15 years, which will ensure that workers have a greener, more affordable commute.

Honolulu received this grant from the Federal Transit Administration’s Low or No Emission program following an intensive application process, with the city competing against other municipalities and localities across the country.

Hilo Municipal Golf Course Announces Changes in Policies

Effective Monday, June 1, the County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation will implement the following changes to the interim rules governing the play of golf at the Hilo Municipal Golf Course. These changes are the result of continued high demand at the course and the high level of adherence to the rules by those golfers who have been playing the course since it reopened on May 11.

Daily tee time reservations will be available beginning at 7 a.m. through 4:30 p.m., seven days a week at 8-minute intervals. Groups will continue to be limited to a maximum of 4 players. 

Additionally, tee time reservations for players desiring to play 9-holes will be available on the back-nine beginning at 7 a.m. through 8:30 a.m. at 8-minute intervals.

Reservations will be accepted by phone only (no walk-ins) and may be made up to seven days in advance. Only one tee time reservation may be made per phone call and calls will be taken between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. daily.

The wearing of face masks/covers at the facility, except during play, is still required as are adherence to social distancing policies and hand sanitizing procedures. Persons exhibiting COVID-19 related symptoms or are otherwise sick are instructed to stay home to prevent exposure to fellow golfers and course staff.

On the course, raised cups continue to be implemented, flagsticks are not allowed to be removed and benches, water fountains and ball washing stations remain out of service. All golfers are advised to bring drinking water with them on the course.

Resumption of club play, as well as the availability of making reservations through the end of the 2020 calendar year, are anticipated to commence in July, barring any unfavorable developments.  

The Department thanks the golfing community for its understanding, patience and respectful play at the course under the continually evolving COVID-19 policies, rules and conditions.

The golf pro shop and driving range facilities will continue to operate under modified procedures implemented by the concessionaire. The restaurant facility is anticipated to reopen for business in the near future under modified procedures.

For more information contact the Hilo Municipal starters’ office at (808) 959-7711.

Department of Public Safety Inmate Population Report

There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the prisons or jails. 

PSD Population Report

From March 2 to May 29 there has been a substantial reduction in the jail population across the state. These reductions are due to the huge, up-front diversion efforts made by county police departments, PSD’s Intake Services Center Division and the State Judiciary.

More recent, additional reductions are due to the collaborative efforts of the state public defender’s office, county prosecutors, the Hawai‘i Supreme Court and the Supreme Court appointed Special Master, Judge Dan Foley. As the focus has shifted to the sentenced prison population, reports now include the prisons.

Note: The jail population decreases reflected for the time period in the graph above are inclusive of all reasons for release ordered by the courts. The prison population decreases reflected for the time period in the graph above include a combination of normal releases for time served, cases reviewed for parole approval in the normal course of business by the Hawaii Paroling Authority (HPA), and cases reviewed by HPA earlier than normal in consideration of the pandemic situation.

Inmate Testing 

The latest Inmate Testing Report is at: PSD COVID-19 information and resources webpage.

Department of Environmental Management Administration Offices Suspend In-Person Services Through June 30

The Department of Environmental Management administration offices extends the suspension of all in-person services through Tuesday, June 30, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

This includes the Department’s administration, Solid Waste Division administration, the Abandoned/Derelict Vehicles Section (345 Kekūanāoʻa Street, Suite 41, Hilo) and the Wastewater Division administration and Engineering Section (108 Railroad Avenue, Hilo). This does not affect the transfer stations, West Hawaiʻi Sanitary Landfill (aka Puʻuanahulu), Hilo Sort Station, and wastewater treatment plants, which remain in operation as usual.  

Payments for Solid Waste and Wastewater services are accepted by phone, mail, or at drop box locations (checks only). Notary service and engineering services will be by appointment only. All other customer service inquiries will be handled by phone or email. 

Mail payments to 345 Kekūanāoʻa Street, Suite 41, Hilo, Hawaiʻi 96720 (attention: Solid Waste Division or Wastewater Division).  

Drop Boxes (for checks only) are available at the Department of Water Supply, 345 Kekūanāoʻa Street (in the front circular driveway), or on the exterior wall of the Motor Vehicle Registration Office at the Aupuni Center, 101 Pauahi Street, Suite 5, Hilo (by the U.S. Postal Service blue mailbox).  

For payments by phone, or if you have a question or want to schedule an appointment, call:

Administration:  808-961-8083
Solid Waste Customer Service:  808-961-8339
Wastewater Customer Service:   808-961-8338
Wastewater Engineering:  808-961-8615

These “social distancing” measures are intended to help protect customers, our employees, and our Island community from COVID-19 infection. Please notify our office if you scheduled an appointment but are feeling ill, and we will gladly reschedule it.    

The public’s understanding is very much appreciated during this challenging time.  

Longroad Energy Selected to Develop 160 MW of Solar with 640 MWh of Battery Storage in Hawai’i

Longroad Energy was selected by Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) to begin developing two utility-scale solar and battery storage projects for completion in 2023. The proposed projects include the 120 MWac/480 MWh Mahi Solar in Kunia, O’ahu, which would be the state’s largest solar project to date, and the 40 MWac/160 MWh Pulehu Solar in Pulehu, Maui.  

“We have a track record in Hawai’i of working with local residents to design good projects that communities support,” said Paul Gaynor, CEO of Longroad Energy.  “We are grateful for the opportunity to develop these new projects that help the state make strides towards its ambitious 100% renewable energy goal.”

In the coming months, Longroad plans to gather community input, negotiate power purchase agreements with HECO, begin the permitting process and hold virtual public meetings. The Mahi Solar project plans to work with the Hawaii Farm Bureau on O’ahu to find new agricultural uses for the land under and around the solar panels, and the Pulehu Solar project plans to support the educational efforts of the Maui Economic Development Board to teach students about clean energy. For further information, visit www.longroadenergy.com/mahi and www.longroadenergy.com/pulehu

The Hawai’i team at Longroad (previously as First Wind) developed seven of the state’s largest clean energy projects including 150 MW of wind and 110 MW of solar, all of which are operating today.

Governor Ige Approves Emergency Rules for Counties of Hawaii & Kauai

Gov. David Ige today approved requests from Mayor Harry Kim and Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami to safely re-open more businesses and operations under guidelines that will ensure the health, safety and welfare of the people in Hawaiʻi and Kauaʻi counties.

Hawaiʻi County

Gov. Ige signed Mayor Kim’s Emergency Rule #6 which allows the following businesses, operations or activities, which must follow applicable CDC, industry and regulatory guidelines related to COVID-19 prior to opening:

  • May 30, 2020
    • Places of worship
  • June 1, 2020
    • Other indoor gathering places (including bowling alleys, billiards halls, but NOT arcades or gaming places)
    • Indoor exercise facilities (includes fitness centers and indoor pools and facilities that offer group exercises with no physical contact)
    • Museums and theaters
    • Outdoor spaces (includes ocean tours, outside pools and summer camps)
    • Other personal services (includes tattoo operators and acupuncturists)
    • Other real estate services (including open houses, property viewing, inspections, surveys, appraisals with restrictions)
    • Other retail and repair (including rental of recreational and sports equipment)
    • Certain county park sites and recreational facilities will re-open with some exceptions. County swimming pools, gymnasiums and community centers will remain closed at this time.

Kauaʻi County:

Gov. Ige has also approved Mayor Kawakami’s Emergency Rule #11 to re-open with modifications, businesses, operations or activities starting Monday, June 1. They include:

  • Indoor exercise and recreation facilities (including gyms, fitness centers, recreation facilities)
  • Outdoor spaces (including playgrounds, skateparks, pavilions, parks, organized outdoor team sports)
  • Personal services (including spas)
  • Restaurants (including dine-in)

Mayor Kim Reopens Churches on May 30, Most Other Venues June 1

Expanding on Governor Ige’s 8th Supplementary Proclamation concerning businesses and establishments that may reopen, Hawai‘i County Mayor Harry Kim on Thursday issued an Emergency Rule that reopens places of worship on Saturday, May 30, and most businesses June 1, 2020. 

This means all businesses may open with the following exceptions:

• Transient accommodations (bed and breakfast, short-term rentals and time-shares) may not open except where workers of essential businesses or operations are renting or staying. Current occupants who have pre-booked at transient accommodations may stay until the end of the pre-booked period. These restrictions are in place until the travel quarantine restrictions are lifted;
• Bars, nightclubs, arcades and other public gathering venues where social distancing measures are difficult to implement;
• Contact sports;
• Events and other gatherings greater than 10 persons until allowed by Governor’s Proclamation.

The Mayor’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 6 declares that the following medium-risk operations are subject to all restrictions and social distancing requirements found within the 8th Supplementary Proclamation, State Department of Health Reopening Safe Practices, and CDC guidelines.  These operations must follow applicable CDC, industry and regulatory guidelines related to COVID-19 prior to opening:

1. Places of worship.

Faith Based Worship in accordance with the CDC Interim Guidance for Administrators and Leaders of Community and Faith Based Organizations to Plan, Prepare, and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 or any updated CDC guidance. Effective May 30, 2020. This amends the reopening of houses of worship, which were initially scheduled in the Mayor’s Emergency rule 5 to reopen on June 1, 2020.

The following venues will reopen on June 1, 2020:

2. Other indoor gathering places.

• Including, but not limited to, billiards halls, bowling alleys, but not arcades or gaming places.

3. Indoor exercise facilities.

• Includes gyms and fitness centers and indoor pools.
• Includes facilities that are not “gyms” or “fitness centers” but offer classes or group exercises such as yoga, aerobics, Zumba, dance, Pilates, weight lifting, athletics clubs, and martial arts clubs, but there shall be no physical contact.

4. Museums and theaters.

5. Outdoor spaces.

• Includes ocean tours, outside pools and summer camps.

6. Other personal services.

• Includes tattoo operators and acupuncturists.

7. Other real estate services. 

• Including open houses for general public viewing, real estate agent caravans and broker open houses.
• Property viewing, inspections, surveys, and appraisals may be conducted by appointment only with social distancing requirements maintained at all times.  

8. Other retail and repair.

• Including the rental of recreational and sports equipment.


When reopening, businesses must follow:

• Safe practices set forth in Proclamation 8 as may be supplemented and Rule 4, including:
o Use of face masks;
o Hand hygiene—hand washing or hand sanitizers made available, especially upon entry;
o Surface cleaning—regular cleaning/disinfection of surfaces and objects touched by the public and employees
o Physical distancing—internal controls to maintain 6’ distancing; limits on number of persons allowed in the establishment based on the size of the establishment in order to maintain the physical distancing requirements;
o Protection of high-risk populations—separate hours or other accommodations to protect the senior and other vulnerable population;
o Stay home if sick directives;
o Signage informing customers and employees of the safe practices requirements.
• Higher levels of safety precautions specified by Governor’s proclamations, State rules, County proclamations or rules, CDC, OSHA, NIOSH, and/or industry-specific guidance.

Individuals at higher risk should continue to minimize time and contacts outside the household.

Rule 6 rule shall continue through June 30, 2020, or until extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended by my subsequent order, or as otherwise provided by law.

Additionally, Mayor Kim is submitting to the Governor an Amendment to his Rule 4, which will reopen certain County park sites and recreational facilities on June 1, with some exceptions.  Swimming pools, gymnasiums, and community centers will remain closed at this time.

To request no cost assistance in providing a safe and healthy business for employees and customers, contact the COVID Task Force on Education and Prevention at 935-0031. 

Grab-and-Go School Meal Program Extended at Select Sites

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) Grab-and-Go school meals program will be extended at select meal sites for an extra four days beyond the end of the school year on May 28 and transition to the summer meal program which runs through July 17. The schools below will provide meals to children 18 years or younger, free of charge, regardless of eligibility for free or reduced price meals.

On May 29, some distribution sites will stop serving meals during the summer break. Kauai school sites will stop serving on May 29 and restart on Jun. 8. Sponsor sites at public agencies, churches and nonprofit organizations will begin serving meals to children at additional locations in communities to support keiki.

Parents are urged to check the revised lists below, as the Grab-and-Go sites they currently visit may be closing. Meal distribution will continue to provide grab-and-go servings in walk-up and drive-thru lines. Dine-in options will not be available. Children do not have to be enrolled at the school distribution site and do not have to be public school students.

For special diet accommodations, email specialdiets@k12.hi.us.

Student meals may be picked up without children present but parents and guardians must provide one of the following verification documents:

• Official letter or email from school listing child(ren) enrolled • Recent student report card(s)
• Attendance record(s) from parent portals of school websites

• Birth certificate(s) of child(ren)Student ID card(s)
• Driver’s permit/license(s) for high school students • State-issued ID of the student

Largest Nursery-Grown Coral Planted to Reef Near Honolulu Airport

In the world of nursery raised corals, a one-meter coral is considered big. Yesterday, a team of biologists and technicians from the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) planted what is believed to be the largest coral to be grown in a land-based nursery.

David Gulko, a coral biologist in charge of the Anuenue Coral Restoration Nursery on Sand Island said, “This one-meter (39 inches) coral is the first one that’s ever been done. It’s critically important because as we put out really large size corals, they provide a tremendous number of ecological services and functions and those places where they go. Much greater than if we put out a bunch of small coral.”

The large coral was split into four different pieces before loading onto a work boat. They were then placed into a tub that was gently lowered into the arms of waiting divers. In addition to the one-meter coral, the team out-planted an additional dozen, smaller coral modules in the same area.

The coral reef off of the “reef runway” at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport was dramatically altered a decade ago when a U.S. Navy vessel, the USS Port Royal, grounded there. Gulko explains that it’s been very difficult to restore what represents one of the best, remaining, coral reefs on O‘ahu.

This week’s effort is the first out-planting of nursery-grown coral at this location. Over the next two years they hope to place another 200 plus modules in close proximity to one another at this site. While the team grows corals really fast in the nursery, in the waters around Hawai‘i when they go into the ocean, that growth rate slows tremendously. Gulko explains, “In Hawai‘i our corals naturally grow out in the wild less than one inch each year. We grew the one-meter coral in one year. But as soon as we put them back into their natural environment, they experience the slowest coral growth rates on the planet. Most places outside Hawai‘i experience coral growth between six and nine inches annually.”

Coral ecosystems are considered the foundations of the ocean. “Over time, as different species of fish and invertebrates settle into their coral homes, you’ll start to see the complexity of the biodiversity come back in areas that have been restored,” said Gulko. “But from an ecological perspective, in terms of services and functions, as soon as we put them out, we’re gaining the shelter, the food sources, the protection from predators, etc., that these coral modules provide.”

“Healthy coral reefs also provide shoreline armoring and protection from storm surges. The better shape they are in, the better they can resist and recover from the frequent coral bleaching episodes we’ve experienced, caused by global warming,” said DAR Administrator Brian Neilson.

1,129 People Arrived in Hawaii Yesterday

Today marked nine weeks since the state’s mandatory 14-day self-quarantine started for all passengers arriving in Hawaii from out of state.

Yesterday, 1,129 people arrived in Hawaii. During this same time last year, nearly 30,000 passengers arrived in Hawaii daily, including residents and visitors. The quarantine order was expanded on April 1st to include interisland travelers.

This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday and does not include interisland travel. This data was collected from the Hawaii Department of Transportation’s (DOT) new Mandatory Travel Declaration Form.

The following table shows what the Oahu visitors indicated as the purpose of their trip, and they can choose more than one. This data was collected from the DOT’s new Mandatory Travel Declaration Form.

The DOT’s new Mandatory Travel Declaration Form does not include a question about the type of accommodation.

Māmalahoa Highway Reduced to One Lane of Travel May 31-June 5

As part of the ongoing road improvements to Māmalahoa Highway in Waimea, the County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works Engineering Division announces that traffic will be reduced to one alternating lane of travel at the intersection of Māmalahoa Highway and Hohola Drive starting at 6 p.m. Sunday May 31, through 6 p.m. Friday June 5, weather and construction conditions permitting. The one lane of alternating travel will be in effect 24 hours a day. Work will consist of removal of the existing road, excavation, installation of new road subbase and base, paving, and temporary striping. 

There will be a total of three traffic control flag personnel directing traffic 24 hours a day starting at 6 p.m. on Sunday through Friday, June 5. One flagger will be stationed on Hohola Drive controlling that intersection in unison with two flaggers on the highway. 

Half the Hohola intersection will be rebuilt at a time allowing Hohola Drive residents access to the Highway. Starting Sunday night the Hilo-bound lane of Māmalahoa Highway will be closed and traffic will flow via one lane of alternating travel. The Waimea half of the Hohola Drive intersection will also be closed at this time. Motorists traveling inbound/outbound from Hohola Drive to Māmalahoa Highway will also have one lane of alternating traffic. 

It’s estimated that these two work areas will be completed by Tuesday afternoon at which point through traffic will be shifted onto the newly built road and the other half of the highway and Hohola Drive intersection will be closed. Hohola Drive residents should anticipate having to drive across gravel roadways in this phase of the work plan. Paving is estimated to be completed Thursday afternoon with general clean-up and temporary striping expected to be done by Friday afternoon.

All motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians using Māmalahoa Highway at the intersection of Hohola Drive should plan for and expect delays during the alternating lane travel. The County of Hawai‘i 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 the Brandon Adams at Goodfellow Brothers Inc. at (808) 887-6511.

Department of Water Supply Extends Suspension of In-Person Services

The Department of Water Supply (DWS), County of Hawai‘i has extended the suspension of in-person payment collections and customer service inquiries through Tuesday, June 30, 2020.

As a safety precaution in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, DWS is continuing to accept only telephone, online, auto-payment, mail, or non-cash payments left in a secured DWS payment drop box. To pay a water bill online, please visit www.hawaiidws.org, click either the “Pay Your Bill Online” or “Pay Online” tab and follow the self-service portal. Customers wishing to pay by telephone should call toll-free 844-216-1994 anytime. There are no fees for these services.

For more information about no-charge payment options, please call one of the following Customer Service offices during normal operating hours:

Customer Service Contacts:

Hilo: (808) 961-8060
Waimea: (808) 887-3030
Kona: (808) 322-0600 

Email: dws@hawaiidws.org

DWS is committed to providing essential, safe, and reliable water service. This water continues to undergo routine water-quality testing that shows it meets all state and federal drinking water requirements.

DWS thanks customers for their patience and understanding while urging everyone to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please stay healthy and do your part to help prevent the spread of the virus.

Hawaii Drivers are Nation’s Leading ‘Lead-Foots’ During Pandemic

QuoteWizard, a LendingTree company, and one of the nation’s leading online insurance marketplaces released a report analyzing which states have the speediest and most accident-prone drivers to see where roads could be most dangerous during COVID-19 stay-at-home orders. 

Fewer drivers on the road traveling less miles are leading to a drastic drop in car accidents. However, evidence suggests roads are becoming more deadly during the COVID-19 with an increase of 14% in fatalities per mile driven. 

Visit the full report here.

Key Findings: 

  • Hawaii, South Carolina and Delaware are considered to be the most lead-footed drivers in the country.
  • The National Safety Council found that vehicle fatalities per mile driven increased by 14% compared to March 2019. 
  • Consumer Federation of America estimates a 50% drop in insurance claims during stay-at-home orders. 
  • Open roads are leading to an over 50% increase in highway speeding, making roads more lethal during stay-at-home orders. 
  • QuoteWizard data shows Maine, California and South Carolina are the most accident-prone drivers in the country. 

Methodology

To determine the states with the most dangerous roads, we analyzed driver history from insurance quote data to see which states are the most accident-prone and which states are most lead-footed. Rankings determine the top 25 states with the highest rates of car accidents (accident-prone) and highest rates of speeding tickets (lead-footed).

Hawaiian Electric Proposes No Increase in Oahu Rates

Hawaiian Electric today revised its pending rate request and will now seek no increase in its rates on Oahu.

In its August 2019 application to the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), the company had requested a 4.1% increase in revenues, or $77.5 million. The increase was sought to help pay for operating and capital costs, including upgrades to strengthen the grid and integrate more renewable energy.

The zero rate increase is described in a settlement between the company and the state Division of Consumer Advocacy filed with the PUC. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval.

By cutting its rate request to zero even as it continues to invest in and maintain the electric system, the company is committing to reduce costs and work more efficiently to blunt the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on customers and on Hawaii’s economy. With falling oil prices and no change to base rates, lower bills for residential and business customers could aid the state’s economic recovery.

Hawaiian Electric has begun a comprehensive, 3-year cost reduction program that uses technology and resources shared across five islands to work more efficiently while improving service to customers. The company has committed to reduce costs by at least $25 million a year by the end of 2022.

Since 2013, Hawaiian Electric has spent more than $1 billion replacing and upgrading equipment to improve the efficiency and resilience of the Oahu power grid. Even without the rate increase, that work will continue, with many grid improvements aimed at accelerating the switch from fossil fuel generation to a portfolio of renewable energy resources.

“The decision to hold the line on rates doesn’t change the commitment to achieve our renewable energy goals and to build on our strong customer satisfaction levels,” said Scott Seu, president and CEO of Hawaiian Electric. “We’ll live within our means and make it work. This is the right thing to do as communities reopen and business activities pick up.”

The last rate review for Oahu was filed in 2016 and resulted in a decrease to customer rates overall, largely due to the pass-through of savings from federal tax law changes.

DOH Cites Unlicensed Adult Residential Care Homes & Home Care Agency

During this unprecedented time, the Hawai‘i Department of Health’s Office of Health Care Assurance (OHCA) has continued conducting investigations of unlicensed adult residential care homes (ARCHs) and other care services to ensure the health and safety of seniors.

OHCA has issued two Notices of Violation and Order (NOVOs) for two illegal ARCHs located at 45-1117 Cobb Adams Road in Kāneohe, Hawai‘i, and for an unlicensed home care agency. April M. Mabe, RN, of Cobb-Adams LLC; Dwayne N. Nasu of 565 Halekauwila Street, LLC; Ken Arima; and Linda Fong Arima (aka Linda Sau Khing Fong) have been ordered to immediately cease and desist operations of the unlicensed care homes and home care agency and to pay administrative penalty fees totaling $379,100. The individuals and companies have 20 days to request a hearing to contest the notice and order.

“The safety and wellbeing of our kupuna is our highest priority,” said Keith Ridley, OHCA chief. “If anyone suspects unusual or illegal activity or is uncertain whether a facility is licensed, please reach out to us and report it. We are here to help ensure that our seniors are receiving quality care at licensed facilities and agencies throughout the state.” 

Based on an unannounced visit and investigation conducted in response to complaints, OHCA determined that a complex network of companies and individuals consisting of Cobb-Adams LLC; 565 Halekauwila Street, LLC; April M. Mabe, RN; Dwayne N. Nasu; Ken Arima and Linda Fong Arima (aka Linda Sau Khing Fong); have been illegally operating two ARCHs or Expanded ARCHs (E-ARCHs). It was also determined that the Residence at Cobb Adams LLC (aka Cobb Adams Home Care Services), operated by April M. Mabe, RN, has been illegally operating as an unlicensed home care agency by providing services to residents living at the two unlicensed care homes.

In addition to requiring the individuals and companies to cease operations, they have been ordered to:

  1. Safely transfer the residents from the unlicensed care homes to a licensed adult residential care home or expanded adult residential care home within seven days; 
  2. Notify OHCA in writing within one calendar day after the residents have been safely transferred to a licensed or certified facility and provide the name and address of the licensed or certified facility; 
  3. Pay a fine to the Hawai‘i Department of Health totaling $344,000 for professional services of an unlicensed home care agency (HCA) conducted at an unlicensed adult residential care home (ARCH). This is based on $1,000 for each day of unlicensed operation times 344 days as calculated from the initial date of services provided to each resident at the unlicensed ARCH to the date of the NOVO, inclusive (June 14, 2019 to May 22, 2020);
  4. Pay a fine totaling $35,100 for the unlicensed care home based on a first violation of $100 for each day of unlicensed operations times 351 days as calculated from the date of admission into the unlicensed facility to the date of transfer of all residents, inclusive (June 14, 2019 to May 29, 2020). The transfer date is seven calendar days from the NOVO receipt date. 
  5. Disclose to the Hawai‘i Department of Health whether or not there are any other care home, home care agency, or any health care related entities or services owned or operated by COBB-ADAMS LLC, 565 HALEKAUWILA STREET, LLC, Residence at Cobb Adams LLC (aka Cobb Adams Home Care Services), April M. Mabe, RN, Dwayne N. Nasu, Ken Arima, or Linda Fong Arima (aka Linda Sau Khing Fong), or any other entity, agency, or organization owned, managed, or operated by these same entities or individuals in the same manner as 45-1117 Cobb Adams Road, Kāneohe, Hawai’i 96744 or other unlicensed care homes, home care agencies, or any health care related entities or services.

An ARCH and E-ARCH are defined as any facility that provides 24-hour living accommodations for a fee to adults who require at least minimal assistance in activities of daily living, personal care services, protection, and health care services. These adults do not need the professional health services provided in an intermediate, skilled nursing, or acute care facility, and are unrelated to the family that operates the ARCH or E-ARCH. 

A Home Care Agency (HCA) is defined as a public or proprietary agency, a private, nonprofit organization, or a subdivision of an agency or organization, engaged in providing personal care services or homemaker services to clients in the client’s temporary or permanent place of residence. An HCA does not include organizations that provide only housecleaning services, nor does it apply to an individual, including an individual who is incorporated as a business, or is an unpaid or stipended volunteer. 

The NOVO does not preclude or limit actions by any other public agency or private party. Whenever OHCA surveyors identify potential abuse or neglect, these incidents are immediately reported to Adult Protective Services (APS) for a thorough investigation. APS is part of the Adult Protective and Community Services Branch of the Hawai‘i Department of Human Services. 

Paʻauilo & Waiea Transfer Stations Closed Due to Shortage of Manpower

The Paʻauilo and Waiea Transfer Stations are closed today due to a shortage of manpower. They are scheduled to reopen on Saturday, May 30, 2020.

Household generated waste in the Paʻauilo community can be taken to the Honokaʻa Transfer Station, which is open today until 6 p.m. Household generated waste in the Waiea community can be taken to the Keauhou Transfer Station, which is open today until 6 p.m.

The County of Hawaiʻi Department of Environmental Management is taking these measures to prioritize household trash and to ensure families staying at home during this COVID-19 crisis are able to dispose of their household trash each and every day. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and understanding. 

Please visit their website for future closure information and locations, or call our Department of Environmental Management, Solid Waste Division Office, at (808) 961-8270.