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Department of Agriculture Developing New Pesticides Use Guidelines

Following Kauai Mayor Bernard P. Carvalho, Jr.’s veto Thursday (Oct. 31) of county Bill 2491 (Relating to Pesticides and Genetically Modified Organisms), the state Department of Agriculture reaffirmed the Mayor’s assessment that complicated legal issues and practical enforcement and implementation details must be taken into consideration to effectively address community’s concerns.

“The Department of Agriculture is in the process of implementing guidelines for companies regarding pesticide disclosure and buffer zones and will be submitting a budget request to the Legislature for additional pesticide inspectors,” said Chairperson Russell S. Kokubun.
HB673
Earlier this year, the Legislature passed House Bill 673, which the Governor in June signed into law as Act 105, requiring the state Department of Agriculture to post certain information regarding restricted use pesticides on its website. The act also requires the Hawaii Legislative Reference Bureau to conduct a study on other states’ reporting requirements for non-restricted use pesticides.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie said: “This administration looks forward to working with the Mayor to determine a reasonable, thoughtful, and balanced course of action to address these issues and to provide the assurances of public health, safety, and protection.”

The state will work with the Legislature to restore positions within and seek additional funding for the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health’s Environmental Health Administration, particularly for the neighbor islands, to address pesticide compliance and conduct inspections regarding pesticide contamination, and ensure that inspections are conducted in a timely manner.

Big Island Police Searching for Kaʻū Woman Again

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for a 40-year-old Kaʻū woman wanted for abuse of a family/household member.

Sharon Hui

Sharon Hui

Sharon Hui is described as 5-foot-3, 130 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.

Police ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line 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.

Big Island Artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker Sues CafePress.Com

CaféPress cost a painter $250,000 by removing his name from an artwork and selling products featuring the art directly to a foreign client, cutting out the creator, the painter claims in court.

Brad "Tiki Shark" Parker gets down at the Body Glove 60th Anniversary Pary

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker gets down at the Body Glove 60th Anniversary Pary

Tiki Shark Art sued California-based CafePress.com, in Federal Court.  Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker owns Tiki Shark Art, which is based in Kailua-Kona on the west side of the Big Island.

My 2014 Tiki Calendar signed by Parker.

My 2014 Tiki Calendar signed by Parker.

Parker says in the lawsuit that he painted “Forbidden Island” in 2007 and owns all rights to it.  He claims Café Press sells “blank” products that can be customized by members with their imprint, then sells and ships them to the public. Café Press gets paid for orders and pays members a commission based on the products sold.

But “Parker and Tiki Shark have never been associated with Cafe Press’ products or endorsed Cafe Press’ products,” according to the complaint.  Parker claims he lost a $257,728 order from a Dubai company after the company found his work on the CafePress website.  He claims the Dubai company order 25,000 towels directly from him, each one to bear his “Forbidden Island” image, then canceled it and bought it through Café Press.

Parker claims Café Press removed his name from the original painting, and has been selling it on towels, flip-flops, mugs and other items without his permission.

Brad "Tiki Shark" Parker signs autographs while Jenna Meistrell from Body Glove meets the public.

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker signs autographs while Jenna Meistrell from Body Glove meets the public.

He seeks damages for copyright and trademark infringement and lost profits.  He is represented by David Smith in Keauhou, Hawaii and Joel Rothman of Schneider Rothman Intellectual Property in Boca Raton, Fla.

(Information from Courthouse News Service:  Can’t Do That, Artist Tells CafePress)

Hawaiian Electric Companies Introduce Ohana Energy Gift Program

The Hawaiian Electric Companies today introduced their new Ohana Energy Gift Program, a thoughtful and practical way for customers to give the gift of energy to their friends and family or to help others in need.

HELCO Logo

The program allows customers of Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light to make payments toward a designated recipient’s electric account. The recipient will receive an acknowledgement letter once the gift amount has been applied to his or her account.

“In Hawaii, we’re blessed to live in a very supportive and generous community. We created this program because over the years we’ve received many requests from our customers for this kind of service,” said Jim Alberts, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president for customer service.

Gift givers will receive a confirmation letter once the designated recipient’s account information has been verified and the gift amount has been applied. Ohana Energy Gifts are not tax deductible donations.

The gifts may be anonymous, or the gift giver may choose to also send a special acknowledgement card with a personalized message.

If a recipient is not designated, the energy gift will be given to individuals and families in need. Application forms may be downloaded from the Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light websites or picked up from any of the companies’ customer service centers.

For more information and downloadable application forms, please visit www.hawaiianelectric.com/gift, www.mauielectric.com/gift, or www.hawaiielectriclight.com/gift.

Rare Sighting of Killer Whales off Kona on the Big Island

Researchers off Hawaii’s Kona coast on Friday documented a rare sighting of killer whales, including at least two that were playing host to hitchhiking remoras.

Killer whale with at least five remoras hitching a ride.  Photo Robin Baird/Cascadia Research Collective

Killer whale with at least five remoras hitching a ride. Photo Robin Baird/Cascadia Research Collective

There were four individuals in the group: a male, an adult female, and two sub-adults. Three of the four were outfitted with satellite tags, and a biopsy sample was collected from one of the cetaceans.

Cascadia Research Collective stated on its Facebook page that this was only its third killer whale encounter in the 14 years the group, which is based in Olympia, Wash., has been conducting studies in Hawaiian waters:

Today off Kona we encountered a group of four killer whales! This individual has a number of remoras on it (photo (c) Robin W. Baird) There were four individuals (one male, one adult female, and two sub-adults), and we were able to deploy satellite tags on three individuals to track their movements, and collected one biopsy sample for genetic studies. This is only our third killer whale encounter in Hawaiian waters in the 14 years we’ve been undertaking research here, and the first time we’ve tagged killer whales in Hawaii. Needless to say it was a good day. We’ll be posting more photos and information on the encounter and other encounters in the last few days at www.cascadiaresearch.org/hawaii/OctNov2013.htm although probably not till tomorrow.

An adult female and a sub-adult. Credit: @Robin Baird/Cascadia Research Collective

An adult female and a sub-adult. Credit: @Robin Baird/Cascadia Research Collective

“These are the first satellite tags we’ve deployed on killer whales in Hawaiian waters, and we think the first tags deployed on this species in the tropical Pacific, so we are excited about learning where these whales spend their time,” Cascadia stated on its website.

The 15-day research project ended Friday, but some of the scientists went back to sea on Sunday and re-located the four killer whales, plus three others, and witnessed a predation event involving a thresher shark.

Cascadia also posted a chart showing the movements of two of the three tagged killer  whales:

Whale Chart

Big Island Police Searching for Hilo Man Who May Be Armed and Dangerous

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for a 35-year-old Hilo man who is wanted on bench warrants for contempt of court and failure to appear.

Jacob W. Umemoto

Jacob W. Umemoto

Jacob W. Umemoto is described as 6-feet tall, 165 pounds with brown eyes and black hair.

Police urge the public not to attempt to approach him, as he is considered armed and dangerous.

Instead, anyone who sees him or knows his whereabouts is asked to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or Sergeant James Correa at 961-2213.

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.