Two Killed in Mountain View Accident – HFD Report

Mt view accident

Principals and Politicians to Meet About HAAS Bus Situation

The recent cessation of bus transport affecting 60 Hawai’i Academy of Arts and Sciences (HAAS) Charter School children in Pahoa, has prompted action from the community, County and State of Hawai‘i.

HAAS Principal Steve Hirakami talks to the community about the situation

HAAS Principal Steve Hirakami talks to the community about the situation

On Friday August 9, at 4 p.m., Council Member Greggor Ilagan will facilitate a meeting to discuss possible solutions to this transportation issue. Senator Russell Ruderman, Representative Faye Hanohano, HAAS Principal Steve Hirakami and Pahoa High School Principal Darlene Bee are all confirmed to attend.


Big Island Police to Hold Community Meeting in Waimea

The Hawaiʻi Police Department will hold a community meeting on Tuesday, August 20, from noon to 2 p.m. at the Hawaiian Homes hall in Waimea.

HPDBadgeThe purpose of the meeting is to allow the public to meet the Police Department’s command staff and to discuss concerns with the police chief and commanders who oversee police operations in the South Kohala District.

This South Kohala event continues the district community meetings, which are rotated throughout the eight police districts on the Big Island. To aid police commanders in focusing on specific concerns, it is requested that participation be limited to persons who live or work in the South Kohala District.

Those interested in participating but unable to attend may call Captain Randall Medeiros at 887-3080, stop by the South Kohala police station in Waimea, or e-mail their concerns or comments to


Auto Body Hawaii and Ka’analike Donating Three Cars to Families of Need

Auto Body Hawaii, in association with Ka’analike, is gearing up to donate three reconditioned vehicles to families of need. On Friday August 23rd at 6pm Auto Body Hawaii, during their 40th anniversary celebration, will be providing three vehicles to families preselected by Officer Nalani Freitas.

Auto Body Hawaii

Auto Body Hawaii recognizes this as a great way of giving back to the local community that supports us. We are excited to be able to provide valuable transportation to a family in need; we can put this car, and future cars, back safely on the road and into the hands of those who can really use them. Auto Body Hawaii is providing the vehicles in commemoration of their 40th year in business. In August 1973 Auto Body Hawaii opened for business in a small space in a warehouse on Luhia Street. Forty years and thousands

of satisfied customers later Auto Body Hawaii has grown with the West Hawaii community.

Starting with a single employee, over the years Auto Body Hawaii is proud to have since provided employment to hundreds of Hawaii residents. Dale Matsumoto, current president, claims the longevity of the business is due to company values; “we strive to provide excellent quality with exceptional customer service. Honesty is what people expect & that we provide.” Call Tiffiny Taylor, 329-2544;, for more information

Department of Education Tackling Inefficiencies as Part of Education Transformation

As public schools begin a new year, the Hawaii State Department of Education (DOE) will keep part of its focus on investigating inefficiencies to enhance operations statewide. Today, the DOE revealed a new analysis aimed at improving development of school facilities.
DOE Release

A review of the DOE’s Facilities Development Branch (FDB) was presented before the Hawaii State Board of Education (BOE) Audit Committee. The analysis is based on the DOE/BOE strategic plan to locate and correct inefficiencies as directed by Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

The review on FDB analyzed processes and controls related to specific construction, repair and maintenance activities against leading industry practices. It noted a number of findings and made recommendations for improvement.

“There is always an on-going need for improving or building additional facilities to support our students, and we need to make the best use of our capital improvement dollars. That’s why we commissioned a thorough review to help us better manage projects as we go forward,” stated Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “The findings of this review clearly indicate that outdated policies and procedures are prolonging many projects. Our department will work with all interested stakeholders to correct long-term challenges and address the recommendations.”

According to the report, “Inefficiencies in capital planning, construction building, and construction management limit FDB’s ability to maximize use of its biennium budget to repair, maintain, and construct new school facilities throughout the state.”

Other findings include:· FDB does not sufficiently leverage technology to streamline the project and construction management process.
· Lack of effective communication within FDB leading to setbacks.
· Insufficient master planning. “Our Strategic Plan has three major components: Student Achievement; Staff Development and Systems of Support improvements,” stated BOE Chairman Don Horner. “This latest audit is part of the overall Plan to make much needed long-term and systemic improvements in how to more effectively and efficiently build and repairs our schools in the future.”

Superintendent Matayoshi directed the DOE’s Internal Audit Office (IA) to assist in the scope to perform a Process and Internal Controls Review of FDB and to administer the procurement of those services. Following a request for proposal, Deloitte & Touche LLP was contracted in June 2011. The company summed up its findings and recommendations before the BOE Audit Committee today.

In February, IA presented its audit of the DOE’s food services program. Its review focused on the design and operating effectiveness of existing control procedures. The DOE has since taken corrective action based on the recommendations of that review.

Independent of all other departments within the DOE, the IA reports directly to the Superintendent and the BOE Audit Committee. IA reports quarterly on the status of audits and recommendations.

Last year, an audit of the DOE student bus transportation services surfaced a number of inefficiencies in contract procedures and fiscal mismanagement. Several changes have been made based on recommendations of that audit. The DOE also began this school year with its Get On Board initiative,a multi-year, multi-faceted commitment to reform its public school student bus transportation system. For more information about Get on Board, please visit

A copy of the DOE’s Construction Process and Internal Controls Review report is available here.

Reports presented before the BOE can also be found at


Alahou Clean & Sober Receives $30,000 Grant-in-Aid from State Legislature

Alahou Clean & Sober, the only long-term housing facility on the Big Island for individuals with a dual diagnosis of addiction combined with mental illness, was honored in Kona for its work with at-risk individuals. The facility is unique in that half of the Board of Directors is comprised of Alahou residents. There is a Residents Council made up of residents who monitor each other for suspected drug or alcohol use. Alahou is an ohana of 60 family members where everyone participates and supports each other.

Alahou Clean & Sober

“When Po’ailani pulled out they left 72 residents, several who were severely mentally ill, who would have become homeless if we had not stepped in.” said Sandi McCoy, Executive Director of Alahou Clean & Sober. “We were left with nothing as Po’ailani took all the toilet paper, soap, cleaning supplies, everything so we literally rose from ashes just like the phoenix which is our symbol. Alahou means New Beginning.”

“Alahou performs a crucial function in the Kona community providing a safe, sober and stable environment for some of our most at-risk individuals.” Said Representative Nicole Lowen (Kailua-Kona, Holualoa, Kalaoa, Honokohau). “Sandi has done a terrific job at Alahou which is more like one big ohana where everyone looks after each other.”

“The grant-in-aid funds from both the State and the County were necessary due to the loss of funds from an annual grant from Shipper’s Wharf and lower funding from United Way.” said Vice Speaker John Mizuno who, along with Rep. Lowen, presented Sandi McCoy with a certificate recognizing her achievements. “It is so important to keep facilities like Alahou open to help individuals who would have no other option than homelessness.”

Flags to Fly at Half-Staff in Honor of Former Rep. Ernest Heen

As a mark of respect for the late former state Rep. Ernest “Juggie” Nalani Heen, Jr., Gov. Neil Abercrombie has ordered that the National Flag and Hawaii State Flag shall be flown at half-staff at all state offices and agencies as well as the Hawaii National Guard on Thursday, Aug. 8, 2013, the day of his memorial service.

Click to read the proclamation

Click to read the proclamation

Heen served in the state Legislature for three terms in the 1960s and was the recipient of the Democratic Party of Hawaii 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award. He died June 30 in Honolulu at age 82.

Upon hearing of his passing, the Governor stated:

“Juggie will be remembered for his tireless efforts to ensure dignity for those facing their final moments. A leader of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, he always exhibited strength of character that was complemented by his ability to see through to the core of the issue. Our state is left better as a result of his influence and legacy.

“Our thoughts are now with the Heen family. It is our hope that, in bidding him aloha, they find in each other the strength and courage he always exhibited. He was the stalwart champion of the values that are the heart of the Democratic Party. We honor him best by renewing our pledge to those values of justice, opportunity and aloha for all.”


Wordless Wednesday – First Day of 4th Grade