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Governor Abercrombie Appoints Heather Haunani Giugni to the State House of Representatives

Governor Neil Abercrombie today announced the appointment of Heather Haunani Giugni to the state House of Representatives for District 33, which includes ‘Aiea, ‘Aiea Heights, Halawa Heights, Halawa Valley and Red Hill.

Heather Haunani Giugni

Ms. Giugni fills the seat left vacant by former Representative Tom Okamura who stepped down recently due to health reasons.

“Heather and her family have been part of the democratic story for generations,” said Governor Abercrombie. “The lessons she’s learned firsthand from Hawai’i’s leaders have helped define her strong commitment to uplifting young people and building a better future for this state. In addition, her skills and appreciation of modern technology and communication will be valuable assets to the legislature.”

With over 25 years of film and video experience, Ms. Giugni is the owner of Juniroa Productions and a founding member of ‘Ulu’ulu: The Henry K. Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawai’i. She has worked on numerous documentaries that have highlighted history, culture and traditions of Hawai’i. Ms. Giugni has been a producer for the live broadcasts of the Kamehameha Schools Song Contest and the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival. She is a producer and mentor for Hiki No, a PBS Hawai’i show produced by Hawai’i high school students.

“I look forward to serving the community and following in the footsteps of those leaders who represented this special district,” said Ms. Giugni.

Ms. Giugni is a resident of ‘Aiea. Her swearing in ceremony will take place Tuesday, February 21, when the House of Representatives convenes.

Congressional Candidate Bob Marx Fights For Equal Representation Of Neighbor Island Candidates

East Hawaii attorney and Democratic Congressional candidate, Bob Marx, calls for fair representation of neighbor island candidates in statewide media.

In response to the February 14 poll in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Bob Marx says that the poll explicitly privleges O’ahu candidates over neighbor island candidates. This, he states, is part of a broader trend in which the social and political concerns of neighbor islands are neglected by statewide media entities.

“Over 60 percent of voters in Hawai’i’s second congressional district reside on a neighbor island. It is a great disservice to the neighbor island communities, whom I seek to represent in Congress, that the Honolulu Star Advertiser has framed this critical second district race as a “two candidate race” between two Honolulu-based candidates.” He continued by stating, “It is exactly this exclusion, or indifference to the concerns of rural Hawai’i, that I will fight against in Congress.”

Hawai’i’s Second Congressional District includes rural O’ahu from Waimanalo to Waianae, as well as Hawai’i Island, Maui County, and Kaua’i County. Because sixty percent of voters in this district reside on a neighbor island, there has been marked public outcry to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s exclusion of neighbor island candidate and community advocate Bob Marx.

The polling methodology used by the Star Advertiser for the 2nd District Congressional Race has been drawn into question by several rural Hawai’i residents. Big Island professional Joy Hudson-San Buenaventura has stated, “Only 29% of Hawaii resident who were polled are actually from neighbor islands, and yet they represent over 60% of the district. That is a disparity. It’s no coincidence that the only two 2nd District candidates mentioned in the poll are from Honolulu. Rural residents and neighbor island people are always underrepresented in polls and we will vote.”

The way rural Hawai’i residents vote, however, is inextricably shaped by the media.

Bob Marx declared, “I have spent my career in Hawai’i advocating for senior citizens, single parents, and the underemployed in rural areas when they need it the most. Hawai’i needs someone who can effectively represent the neighbor islands and it’s undemocratic to see the race being defined as a two-person contest so early by the media.”

“Families are hurting and communities are stretched thin. I have been there. This election comes down to what best serves the family. My family and my community doesn’t need more of the same; it needs new and effective leadership. I know your struggles and I am excited to meet with you on the campaign trail. Our roads and schools are crumbling and our small farms lack infrastructure to raise their productivity. Voters deserve to know who are their options for candidates in the 2nd Congressional District, beyond those portrayed by Honolulu.”

“I am in this congressional race to win. I will continue to fight, unequivocally, for equal representation for the concerns and needs of rural O’ahu, Hawai’i Island, Maui County and Kaua’i County.”

Free Tax Help Offered to Moderate Income and Older Taxpayers

IRS-trained and certified volunteers are ready to help low to moderate income and older taxpayers prepare their returns and claim the EITC they deserve. IRS volunteers believe that preparing an accurate tax return is the most important aspect of providing quality service to taxpayers and have put fundamental steps in place to ensure quality.

Make your appointment today at one of these free tax preparation sites on Hawaii Island :


HFS Federal Credit Union

632 Kinoole Street

ONLY on Saturday March 3rd

10:00 am – 3:00pm (last return accepted at 2:00)


Visit:  www.assetshawaii.org to book an appointment

OR Call:  (808) 961-8085


HOPE Resource Center

116 Kapiolani Street

ONLY on Saturday – March 3rd and 24th

10:00 am – 3:00pm (last return accepted at 2:00)


Visit:  www.assetshawaii.org to book an appointment

OR Call:  (808) 961-8085


North Hawaii Education and Research Center

45-539 Plumeria Street

ONLY on Saturday – March 17

10:00 am – 3:00pm (last return accepted at 2:00)


Visit:  www.assetshawaii.org to book an appointment

OR Call:  (808) 961-8085


Kaloko Housing Community Center

Hina Lani Street, Kona

ONLY on Saturday – March 24

10:00 am – 3:00pm (last return accepted at 2:00)


Visit:  www.assetshawaii.org to book an appointment

OR Call:  (808) 961-8085


Goodwill Industries of Hawaii, Inc.

74-5599 Luhia Street, Suite F-4

Thursdays – 4:00pm – 7:00pm


Call (808) 430-0608

Start:  2/02 – End: 4/07


AARP/IRS Tax Aide Program

Tutu’s House, 64-1032 Mamalahoa Hwy. , Waimea

Monday’s and Fridays – 9:00am – 1:00pm


Call (808) 388-6645

Start:  2/03 – End: 4/16.

For more information or to find a free tax preparation site near you, visit www.hawaiitaxhelp.org, email: info@hawaiitaxhelp.org, or call: 2-1-1 (Aloha United Way Toll Free Helpline).

County of Hawaii Relief Drive for Typhoon Sendong Victims

In December 2011, Typhoon Sendong ravaged Mindanao in the Philippines. The typhoon and flooding left over a thousand residents dead and many more homeless. Recovery efforts are still under way, and our community can help.

Now through March 3rd, bring your donations of new or slightly used children’s clothing, footwear, toiletries, and school supplies to one of our collection sites. The County of Hawai ‘i will send it off to the Philippines to help the children displaced by Typhoon Sendong.

In Hilo , drop off your donations during business hours at Kama`āina Nissan in Keaukaha or Kama`āina Motors on Kāwili Street. In Kona, you can bring them to the Information Desk at the West Hawai`i Civic Center.

For more information, call the Mayor’s Office at 961-8211. Together, we can help our family and friends in the Philippines. Mahalo for your generosity.

HI-PAL Spring Basketball League Beginning in March

The Hawaiʻi Isle Police Activities League (HI-PAL) will hold a Boys and Girls Intermediate School Spring Basketball League from the second week in March through the first week in May.

Officer Joseph Botelho Jr. at the Pahoa HI-Pal Tournament

This league is for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade intermediate school students only.

Teams are formed within the interested students’ intermediate schools from Hāmākua to Puna, and will compete against other participating intermediate schools. Outside organizations may participate by representing the school they attend. Home school students and schools unable to form a team can be combined together as a team.

Games will be played at various Parks and Recreation gyms in East Hawaiʻi. A schedule with the different games, times and locations will be provided prior to the start of this league.

All interested coaches are encouraged to call Officer Joseph Botelho Jr. at 961-2220 or the Community Policing office at 961-8121.

12th Annual Great Waikoloa ‘Ukulele Festival

Waikoloa Beach Resort presents the 12th Annual Great Waikoloa ‘Ukulele Festival, Saturday March 3, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. at Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa, Kings’ Shops and Queens’ MarketPlace.

With Hawaii’s “Ambassador of Aloha” Danny Kaleikini as Master of Ceremonies, the ‘Ukulele Festival spotlights ten performances on two stages, a free workshop with Roy Sakuma and chance to win one of nine top-of-the-line ‘ukulele from Kala ‘Ukulele, KoAloha, Kamaka ‘Ukulele, Kanile‘a ‘Ukulele, MGM ‘Ukulele, Ko‘olau Pono Guitar and ‘Ukulele Company, theUkuleleSite.com, and the ‘Ukulele Festival-Hawaii.  Lei-making, ‘umeke making (decorated gourd bowl), ‘ukulele making demonstrations and lessons will be offered throughout the afternoon.

Roy and wife Kathy created the first annual ‘Ukulele Festival in 1971, while Roy was a maintenance worker for the City and County of Honolulu.  Today, their efforts have grown into a series of events on four islands, with over 20,000 participants.  The original ‘Ukulele Festival at Kapi‘olani Bandstand in Waikiki, hosts a performance by an 800-member ‘ukulele orchestra every July.  Their 501 (c)(3) nonprofit, ‘Ukulele Festival Hawaii, was established in 2004, “To bring laughter, love and hope to children and adults throughout Hawaii and the world through the music of the ‘ukulele.”

Appearing with Roy at the Waikoloa ‘Ukulele Festival will be his mentor for over 50 years, Herb “Ohta-san” Ohta, jazz guitarist Nando Suan, and his protégée Nelly Toyama-Baduria.  Sponsors include Waikoloa Beach Resort, Kings’ Shops, Queens’ MarketPlace, ‘Ukulele Festival Hawaii, ‘ukulele companies Kala ‘Ukulele, KoAloha, Kamaka ‘Ukulele, Kanile‘a ‘Ukulele, MGM ‘Ukulele, Ko‘olau Pono Guitar & ‘Ukulele Company, theUkuleleSite.com, and the ‘Ukulele Festival-Hawaii, in addition to Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa, Roberts Hawaii, and Eddie Aikau Restaurant. For more information, call Queens’ MarketPlace office at 886-8822 or visit www.WaikoloaBeachResort.com.

Waikoloa Beach Resort is a complete destination resort that encompasses two championship golf courses and over 3,000 guest rooms in two upscale hotels, and seven luxury condominiums and vacation home properties.  The Resort also includes award-winning Queens’ MarketPlace and Kings’ Shops, offering a wide variety of shopping opportunities, services and dining experiences, plus free entertainment and cultural programs and large-scale events in the Waikoloa Bowl at Queens’ Gardens.  For more information visit www.WaikoloaBeachResort.com or call 886-8822.


Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa, Ali‘i Ballroom

  • 10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. ‘Ukulele Workshop with Roy and Kathy Sakuma. BYOU (bring your own ‘ukulele).  Free.

Kings’ Shops Stage

  • 1:00 p.m.         Roy Sakuma’s “Super Keiki” with Nelly Toyama-Baduria and Daniel Baduria
  • 2:00 p.m.         Ohta San and Nando Suan
  • 3:00 p.m.         Hawaii Preparatory Academy Students
  • 4:00 p.m.         ‘AHAmele

Queens’ MarketPlace

  • 2:00-5:30 p.m.
  •  ‘Ukulele Making Demonstration with Bob Gleason
  • ‘Ukulele Lessons with Barnette Fischer and Hanae Okumura
  •  Lei-Making with the Ladies of the Ka‘ahumanu Society (while supplies last)
  • ‘Umeke Making with Aunty Donna Jensen

Queens MarketPlace Coronation Pavilion

  • 2:00 p.m.         Kona Pacific Public Charter School
  • 2:45 p.m.         ‘AHAmele
  • 3:30 p.m.         Waikoloa School
  • 4:00 p.m.         Ohta San and Nando Suan
  • 5:00 p.m.         Roy Sakuma’s “Super Keiki” with Nelly Toyama-Baduria and Daniel Baduria
  • 6:00 p.m.         The Kupuka‘as

“Kona Coffee – 100% Gourmet” 2012 Kona Coffee Cultural Festival Theme Call to Artists

The Kona Coffee Cultural Festival, the organization responsible for preserving, perpetuating and promoting Kona’s 184-years of unique coffee heritage, unveiled the 2012 theme of the 42nd Annual Kona Coffee Cultural Festival. This year’s theme “Kona Coffee-100% Gourmet” highlights the distinctive history and culture of Kona coffee pioneers, farmers and artisans that celebrate Kona’s hand-picked, gourmet coffee.

As an important component of each year’s Festival artists are invited to submit their work, inspired by the 2012 theme, for the opportunity to be the featured artwork of the 42nd Annual Festival. The winning artwork will be the feature on the 2012 Festival’s button, poster, t-shirt, website, magazine and other promotional materials, giving the winning artist great exposure among the thousands of festival-goers.

The Festival is looking for paintings that clearly express the theme of this year’s Kona Coffee Cultural Festival “Kona Coffee-100% Gourmet.” The winning artist will receive a complimentary booth to show their artwork at several events during the Festival’s 10-days and a feature article in the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival magazine.

Submission details:

  • Deadline for submissions is Monday, April 9, 2012. The winning artist will be notified in writing.
  • The Kona Coffee Cultural Festival has full image usage rights in perpetuity for the 2012 Festival winning artwork and for any future Festival needs.
  • Submissions may be original artwork or a digital file of art. The winning artist may be asked to work with the Festival to prepare a final image.
  • If submitting artwork electronically, file should be at 300 dpi, approximately 8″ in its longest dimension. Winning art if submitted digitally may require a higher resolution file for print collateral.
  • Most Festival promotional collateral is either vertical or square.
  • No typography should be in the artwork.
  • Please include a short artist bio with each submission. A description of the submission is optional but not required.

Submissions should be delivered on or before Monday, April 9, 2012 to Malia Bolton, Kona Coffee & Tea Company, 74-5035 Queen Kaahumanu Highway, Kailua Kona or electronically at maliabolton@gmail.com, with subject line “festival submission.”

For more information or to request a copy of the artwork rules and guidelines, contact Malia Bolton at 808-896-7907.

Blackhawk Helicopter View of Mauna Kea

I found this video of a Blackhawk Crew Chief 15T lifting off from Pohakuloa Training Area on Mauna Kea pretty unique because we don’t normally get a view of this part of Mauna Kea because it’s restricted from tour helicopters.


The caption on the clip that was uploaded last month stated:

Flight from PTA on the big island of Hawaii headed back to Oahu.

Kona Man Sets Himself on Fire and Attempts to Set Ex-Girlfriend on Fire Too

A South Kona man is in police custody after setting himself on fire and attempting to do the same to his ex-girlfriend.

Police initially received a 1:21 a.m. report Tuesday (February 14) that a man was walking on Tobacco Road in Hōnaunau with a knife. En route, Kona patrol officers received updates that a house at that location was on fire.

Upon arrival, the officers determined that the suspect, 27-year-old Robert York of Hōnaunau, had reportedly gone to the home of his ex-girlfriend, poured a flammable liquid on the front porch and lit it on fire.

After the 26-year-old victim escaped from the house by climbing out a window, the suspect reportedly restrained her and poured the flammable liquid onto both her and himself.

The victim’s relatives, who live in another house on the same property, heard the commotion, exited their house and pulled the suspect away from the victim. As one of the relatives was fighting the flames on the porch with a garden hose, the suspect set himself on fire.

The relatives helped the suspect [corrected party] extinguish the flames. The suspect [corrected party] then fled from the property on foot.

A short time later, the suspect called 911 and was taken by ambulance to Kona Community Hospital for treatment of burns.

Police made contact with York at the hospital. When he was discharged from the hospital at 10:15 a.m. Wednesday, officers arrested him on suspicion of abuse, terroristic threatening and arson. He is being held at the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section continue the investigation.

The victim did not require medical attention for the injuries she received during the struggle with the suspect.


Mokulele Airlines Completes Move to New Ownership

Mokulele Flight Service, flying the skies of Hawai’i since 1994, was recently purchased by TransPac Aviation Holdings in late 2011. Under the new ownership, kama’aina can expect to see a return of many traditions of Mokulele Airlines.

“After the 2010 transition into the go!Mokulele joint venture, many duplicate processes were merged into go! so we’ve had to rebuild our internal systems and procedures,” says President & CEO Ron Hansen, “and with these changes we will can focus on rebranding our core business while maintaining our marketing relationship with Go! It’s also our plan to look at things the Mokulele team did in the past and bring some of the good things back.”

Mokulele's New Logo

Mokulele has introduced a new logo & branding and is taking a hard look at its core business. “We have a great future ahead of us as we work to bring the spirit of aloha back to the skies,” says Hansen, “and focus on our commuter inter-island business.”

Customers will see a newly branded www.mokuleleairlines.com and the return of the easy-to-use online booking engine for public and corporate/travel agents. The system, allows for customers to purchase many items in advance, including overweight luggage, make changes to reservations, and cancel reservations online. Customers can also sign up for e-mail specials with exclusive notice of any fare sales, coupons & new service.

Mokulele Airlines will continue all of its current routes – including flying the only true shuttle between Kailua-Kona and Kahului and between Kahului and Molokai. “We also plan on retiming a few flights to optimize our schedule for our local travelers,” continues Hansen, “so that we can continue being the #1 choice for kama’aina. We are working to get back to our core values of offering a high quality, lower fare product at times people need to fly.”

Mokulele offers over 40 flights a day connecting Maui & Oahu to the Big Island, Lanai, and Molokai using 9 seat turbine powered Cessna Grand Caravan 208 aircraft. The company maintains its headquarters in Kailua-Kona. For reservations & information, visit www.mokuleleairlines.com, www.facebook.com/mokulele, visit your favorite travel agent, or call 888-435-9462.

East Hawaii Community Development District Bill Deferred

Rep. Jerry Chang (South Hilo, Waiakea Kai, Kaumana, Keaukaha), as Chair of the House Water, Land & Ocean Resources Committee, decided to defer House Bill 2366, relating to the establishment of the East Hawaii Community Development District.  Rep Chang cited strong opposition to the bill that he introduced.

“There is no doubt that the Banyan Drive and Kanoelehua industrial area in Hilo are in dire need of renewal, renovation, and improvement,” said Rep. Chang.  “However, House Bill 2366 is not the best vehicle to address the problem. The authority to construct, improve, renovate, and revitalize areas within Hawaii County are already authorized under State and County statutes.”

The current title holder of the land in question, the Department of Land and Natural Resources, stated that it would prefer to develop the land under the Public Land Development Corporation.

“The attention generated through the introduction of this bill sends a strong signal to DLNR that now is the time to take action and to revitalize this area that is so critical to the Hilo economy,” added Rep. Chang.

Big Island Police Still Searching for Man Missing Since 2010

Big Island police are renewing their request for information about a missing 24-year-old Mountain View man.

Adam Yarbro

Adam Yarbro was last contacted by a family member on September 26, 2010. He suffers from a medical condition that requires medication.

Yarbro is described as about 5-foot-11, 170-185 pounds with red hair and hazel eyes. He was last known to have shoulder-length hair and a red goatee. He has a full-sleeve tattoo on his left arm.

Police ask that anyone with information on his whereabouts call Detective Wendall Carter at 961-2378 or the Police Department’s non-emergency number at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.