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4th of July at Waikoloa Beach Resort

Waikoloa Beach Resort invites the community to celebrate the pursuit of happiness, and their freedom to have fun, with ten free mini concerts on two stages, carnival food and games, the annual Rubber Duckie Race and musical sounds of the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific, capped off with spectacular fireworks over the Waikoloa Bowl.

Waikoloa FireworksNon-stop family entertainment starts at 11 a.m. with live music at Kings’ Shops, followed by the ever-popular Merriman’s Market Café Watermelon Eating contest and the Rubber Duckie Race to benefit United Cerebral Palsy Association of Hawaii (UCPAH) at 3 p.m. Thousands of the bright yellow ducks take a “quack” at crossing the finish line first, with great prizes for winning waterfowl and 100% of the proceeds going to UCPAH. To adopt a duck, call Kings’ Shops office, at 886-8811.

At 12:30 p.m., Salsa Latinos fire up the music at Queens’ MarketPlace Coronation Pavilion, followed by the rocking rhythm of Girls Night Out, cruising into Tomi Isobe Blues Band, toe-tapping Friends of Bluegrass and Mystik Rhythmz, building up momentum for the big show in Waikoloa Bowl. Meanwhile, families from near and far enjoy free cotton candy, popcorn and more from 1-5 p.m. Throughout the shopping center, Balloon Sculpting, Photo Booth ($1), colorful Zoo Choo Train rides ($2) and carnival games (50 cents) treat the keiki to extra fun, in support of UCPAH.

Just after dark, a fireworks extravaganza lights up the sky at Waikoloa Bowl, and families are encouraged to come early to enjoy pre-show country music by the Michael Strand Band, and the full sound of the U.S. Air Force Band of the Pacific, with contemporary Hits and patriotic music leading into the rockets’ red glare. Gates open at 5 p.m., admission is free. Beach mats or chairs are welcome for open lawn seating (smoking, coolers and alcoholic beverages are not permitted). This is a non-smoking event.

Waikoloa Beach Resort would like to thank the Hawaii County Fire Department for co-sponsoring the community fireworks display. For more information visit www.WaikoloaBeachResort.com or call Queens’ MarketPlace office at 886-8822.

July 4 Schedule of Events

Kings’ Shops

  • 11 a.m. Kahikina’s Nahenahe Ohana, traditional Hawaiian sounds
  • 12 p.m. Kris Fuchigami, contemporary Hawaiian, high energy ukulele
  • 1 p.m. Merriman’s Mediterranean Cafe, Watermelon Eating Contest
  • 1:30 p.m. Music by Laulima
  • 3 p.m. Rubber Duckie Race
  • 3:30 p.m. Dam Str8, contemporary Hawaiian, pop, rock classics and originals
  • 5 p.m. Duck Calling and Waddling Contests
  • 5:30 p.m. Award Ceremony

Queens’ MarketPlace, Coronation Pavilion

  • 12:30 p.m. Music by Salsa Latinos, name says it all
  • 1-5 p.m. Zoo Choo train rides, balloon sculpting, carnival games, photo booth, popcorn, and cotton candy. (Small fee for carnival games, photo booth and Zoo Choo rides to benefit United Cerebral Palsy Association of Hawaii)
  • 2 p.m. Girls Nite Out, rock, blues, disco, pop, R&B, Hawaiian, country
  • 3 p.m. Tomi Isobe Blues Band, blues to cruise by
  • 4 p.m. Friends of Bluegrass, Waikoloa’s best bluegrass
  • 5 p.m. Mystik Rhythmz, rock, reggae and blues
  • 8:30 p.m. Full Circle at the Coronation Pavilion, pop, rock and jazz to wind down the night

Waikoloa Bowl

  • 5 p.m. Gates open to Waikoloa Bowl
  • 5:30 p.m. The Michael Strand Band, country sounds to light up the night
  • 7 p.m. The U. S. Air Force Band of the Pacific, pop, rock & roll and patriotic music8 p.m. FIREWORKS SHOW

For more information visit www.QueensMarketPlace.net or call 886-8822.

Health Department Issues Notice of Violation and Order Against Genesis Today and OfficeMax

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has issued a Notice of Violation and Order against Genesis Today and OfficeMax, Inc. for late payments and reports required of beverage distributors by the state’s Deposit Beverage Container (DBC) Program law, also known as the HI-5 program. Both organizations were delinquent for the semi-annual reporting period from July 1 to Dec. 31, 2013.

Department of Health
Hawaii 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 for the previous month. Both organizations received multiple warning letters to remind them of the reporting requirements prior to being assessed a penalty.

DOH has assessed a $400 administrative penalty against Genesis Today and an $800 administrative penalty against OfficeMax for failing to comply with DBC requirements. Both organizations may request a hearing to contest the alleged facts and penalty.

Since its inception in January 2005, the HI-5 program has recycled more than five billion containers. Each year, more than 900 million beverage containers are sold in Hawaii. The program was designed to encourage Hawaii consumers to recycle their beverage containers to prevent these containers from ending up in the waste stream or as litter.

As an incentive, the Hawaii Deposit Beverage Container Program places a 5 cent redeemable deposit on each beverage container. Consumers receive their 5 cents back when they return their containers to a redemption center. The fees are assessed to distributors such as Genesis Today and OfficeMax based on the reported number of beverages sold to consumers.

For more information on the state’s Deposit Beverage Container Program, visit www.hi5deposit.com.

Police Department to Hold Community Meeting In Kea’au

The Hawaiʻi Police Department will hold a community meeting on Tuesday, July 15, from noon to 2 p.m. at the Keaʻau Community Center, located at 16-192 Pili Mua Street (off Old Volcano Highway).

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 Puna District.

This Puna 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 Puna District.

Those interested in participating but unable to attend may call Captain Samuel Jelsma at 965-2716, stop by the Pāhoa police station, or e-mail their concerns or comments to copsysop@hawaiipolice.com.

Ohana Shoreline Fishing Tournament August 15-17

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation invites anglers to enter the 18th annual ‘Ohana Shoreline Fishing Tournament to be held August 15 through August 17.

Pictured are some of last year’s tournament awards Photo Credit: Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation

Pictured are some of last year’s tournament awards
Photo Credit: Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation

Again this year will be separate divisions for keiki 5 to 12 years old, teens, men, women, kupuna 55 years and older, and ‘ohana. Entry fees are $20 per person for the keiki and senior divisions, $25 per person for the men’s and women’s divisions, and $20 per team for the ‘Ohana Division open to one adult and at least one keiki family member.

Entry forms must be turned in or postmarked by Friday, July 18. Forms are available at Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation swimming pools, gymnasiums and other facilities island-wide. They also can be picked up at S. Tokunaga Store in Hilo and J. Hara Store in Kurtistown.

Tournament weigh-ins will be held from noon until 1:30 p.m. Sunday, August 17, at Honoka‘a Gymnasium. An awards ceremony will follow, with valuable prizes for at least the 10 heaviest fish in each of the six divisions. Entrants must be present to receive prizes. No alcohol allowed on premises.

For more information, please call Jayme Carvalho at 962-2103 or 936-4285.

Governor’s Chief Advisor for Technology and Cybersecurity Wins National ‘Government Innovator of the Year’ Award

Gov. Neil Abercrombie today commended Sanjeev “Sonny” Bhagowalia, his chief advisor for technology and cybersecurity, for earning the 2014 Government Technology Research Alliance (GTRA) “Government Innovator of the Year” award. Bhagowalia received the award for facilitating Hawaii’s business and technology transformation, launched in 2011 under the Abercrombie Administration.

Sonny

“This prestigious award recognizes the finest leaders and innovators in government,” Gov. Abercrombie said. “Under Sonny’s innovative leadership, Hawaii has developed an ambitious business and technology plan, established a stable technology foundation, launched key programs to transform delivery of online services, and significantly improved transparency and accountability. Our state government is now being recognized as a leader in the nation for our steady and incremental transformation gains.”

Bhagowalia received the honor amid a field of nominees from federal, state, local and tribal governments. Hawaii was the sole state recipient in the “Government Innovator of the Year” category, beating out two federal finalists from the U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The award was one of 24 handed out at this week’s GTRA GOVTek Executive Government Technology Awards Gala, which celebrates and recognizes government and industry information technology (IT) leaders whose vision, innovation and remarkable accomplishments have improved efficiency, the delivery of government services, citizen engagement, information sharing, and national security.

Bhagowalia was nominated for his accomplishments as the first leader of state Office of Information Management Technology (OIMT) and his achievements over the past year in transforming business and technology in the state through the innovative use of enterprise architectures, strategic planning, program management, transparency and personal transformation.

After being appointed by Gov. Abercrombie as the State of Hawaii’s first chief information officer (CIO) and serving in that capacity for three years, Bhagowalia was promoted to Governor’s chief advisor for technology and cybersecurity in February 2014. The new executive leadership position was created to establish Hawaii as a premier technology and cybersecurity hub in the Asia-Pacific region, and to strengthen ties between Hawaii and Washington, D.C. in support of the state’s business and technology transformation.

Bhagowalia is working with the new state CIO, Keone Kali, and other stakeholders to publish a cybersecurity report on Hawaii’s next steps to align with the National Cybersecurity Framework and establish itself as a world-class cybersecurity center of excellence for the emerging 21st Century Asia-Pacific region.

“Hawaii is on track and being recognized at the national level for making steady progress in modernizing and securing our technology infrastructure and reengineering the way government does business – online versus waiting in line,” Bhagowalia said. “A cybersecurity framework of cooperation and investment will be required by government, industry and academia with local, national and international representation to help Hawaii realize its promise as a crossroads of the Pacific in the Information Age.”

For more information on the GTRA Awards, visit: http://june2014.gtra.org/awards/

“ROAST & ROOTS” – Mark Yamanaka and Raiatea Helm to Perform at Festival of Hawai‘i Flavors

Capping off a festive celebration of Hawaii’s most ‘ono foods and coffees, Grammy nominee and twice Female Vocalist of the Year, Raiatea Helm is the icing on the cake. The first-ever “Roast & Roots” food event on Saturday, July 19, 2014, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay’s Convention Center, serves up a family-friendly festival with arts and food booths, cooking demos, competitions and all-day entertainment, wrapped up with an intimate concert in the afternoon.

Roast & Roots

Hosted by Hawai‘i Coffee Association (HCA) in alignment with their 19th annual conference, Roast & Roots is a collaborative project between HCA, Kamehameha Schools and Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture. Events of the day include a “Buy Local” MarketPlace, Coffee Corridor, exciting People’s Choice Cupping Contest, a “mystery box” demo by Chef Sam Choy, and an exciting Chef-Student Culinary Competition. Abundant entertainment throughout the day includes music by Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award-winner Mark Yamanaka, Kaleo Perry and Dennis Garcia, leading up to Raiatea Helm in concert at 2 p.m.

Mark Yamanaka

Mark Yamanaka at the 2011 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards

Known for her soaring lyrics and intricate musicianship, Raiatea Mokihana Maile Helm is winner of eight Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards and a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation fellowship in music. Beginning her musical career in high school, Helm has captured hearts in Hawai‘i and across the continent and the Pacific, playing to packed houses in Tahiti, Japan and China. Adding her Hawaiian musical flavor to the event seasons it with everything Hawai‘i Island loves: great food, music and family fun.

In the hours leading up to Helm’s performance, families and friends will have numerous opportunities to taste and purchase local food products and peruse the works of Island artisans, including those in the Kona Coffee community in the Coffee Corridor. Additionally, food booths presented by the host hotel and participating chefs and restaurants offer a delicious sampling of dishes from regional ingredients on land and sea.

Raiatea Mokihana Maile Helm

Raiatea Mokihana Maile Helm

Highlighting the Culinary Competition, Roast & Roots pairs up six local chefs with six culinary students from Hawaiʻi Community College at the University of Hawai‘i Center, West Hawaiʻi and Konawaena, Kealakehe and Waiakea High Schools. Teams will use local Hawai‘i Island proteins such as grassfed beef from Hawaii Beef Producers, local pork from Kulana Foods and farm-raised lamb from Waiakea Uka Ranch and a fresh bounty of local Hawai‘i Island produce, to put their best plates forward.

Emcee for the culinary portion, Chef Sam Choy will share his mana‘o with the audience, and has offered to do a “live mystery box” demo, where he will prepare a dish on the spot, using ingredients that are secret to him until the box is opened onstage. Chef Scott Hiraishi will serve as the Lead Judge and Co-chair for the event. Student and chef pairings will be announced early in July.

Mayor Kenoi talks with Sam Choy outside the Sam Choy Poke Contest.

Mayor Kenoi talks with Sam Choy outside the Sam Choy Poke Contest.

Part of the Hawai‘i Coffee Association’s three-day annual conference, Roast & Roots invites the general public to experience some of HCA’s exciting and educational activities, as well as the expertise of Hawaii’s statewide coffee industry growers, processors, roasters, wholesalers and retailers. The annual conference includes workshops and seminars covering coffee cupping packaging, certification, legislative and industry updates, including reports from UH College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), the Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center (PBARC).

Admission at the door is $5 per person, free for anyone under 17—includes Culinary Demonstration, Marketplace and Raiatea Helm Concert. No advance ticket sales. For more information, please contact Event Coordinator Tracey Apoliona, mkc01@hawaii.rr.com, (808) 960-3094 or visit www.Facebook.com/RoastandRoots.

County of Hawai‘i Law Raising the Age of Sale to 21 Years for All Tobacco Products – Takes Effect July 1, 2014

Last year the Hawai’i County Council unanimously approved a bill to raise the age of sale of tobacco products to 21. That measure, Hawai‘i County Ordinance 13-124, takes effect on Tuesday, July 1, 2014.

Signs Required at the Point of Sale:  The law requires that signs are to be posted at the point of sale. Signs where sent out to all registered tobacco retailers in May 2014. Signs are available at the Mayors Offices in East and West Hawaii or by contacting the East Hawaii Tobacco-Free Coalition Coordinator via email at

Signs Required at the Point of Sale: The law requires that signs are to be posted at the point of sale. Signs where sent out to all registered tobacco retailers in May 2014. Signs are available at the Mayors Offices in East and West Hawaii or by contacting the East Hawaii Tobacco-Free Coalition Coordinator via email at

The law prohibits the distribution of tobacco products, including electronic smoking devices, to underage customers born after June 30, 1996. Retailers need to be aware that anyone who is born after June 30, 1996 is prohibited from purchasing tobacco products or electronic smoking devices until they are 21 years of age.

There is an exemption in the new ordinance for people who reach the age of 18 before July 1, 2014. Those who reach the age of 18 before July 1, 2014 are allowed to continue to purchase tobacco. The purpose of the exemption is to ease the transition for people who already use tobacco, and for the retailers.

The Coalition For A Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i (CTFH) and staff from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids worked closely with West Hawai‘i Councilmember Dru Mamo Kanuha and his staff to pass this bill. Hawai‘i County Council unanimously passed Bill 135 on November 20, and Mayor Kenoi signed the legislation into law in December 2013.

The Coalition For A Tobacco-Free Hawaii applauds Hawai‘i County for standing strong on tobacco control. According to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (www.tobaccofreekids.org), “National data show that 95 percent of adult smokers begin smoking before they turn 21.” The ages of 18 to 21 are a critical period when many smokers move from experimental smoking to regular, daily use. Increasing the tobacco sale age to 21 will help prevent young people from ever starting to smoke.

Hawai‘i County joins New York City and Needham and Canton, Massachusetts, in raising the age of sale on tobacco products to 21.  Four states—Utah, New Jersey, Alaska and Alabama—require tobacco buyers to be 19.  Several other counties and states, including Texas, are considering similar measures.

It is important for retailers and potential buyers to know these key points for the new law:

  • Any person who sells or distributes tobacco products, including electronic smoking devices, to an underage customer will be subject to a fine of up to $2,000.
  • Persons, retailers, and employees that sell or distribute tobacco products must verify proof of age of the recipient/purchaser.
  • Sale is prohibited to persons born after June 30, 1996.
  • Valid identification includes: state driver’s license, state identification card, military ID, or passport.
  • Signs are required to be posted at every point of sale.
  • From July 1, 2014 – July 30, 2017, persons who sell or display tobacco products shall post signs clearly and keep them posted at the place of business at each point of sale.
  • Failure to post this sign shall be subject to a fine of up to $500.

Signs were sent to all registered tobacco retailers in May 2014. Additional signs are available at the Mayor’s Offices in East and West Hawai‘i or by contacting the East Hawai‘i Tobacco-Free Coalition Coordinator via email at sally@tobaccofreehawaii.org.

For more information please visit the Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i website at: http://www.tobaccofreehawaii.org/community-coalitions/tobacco-free-big-island/hawaii-county-new-law-raising-the-age-of-purchase-for-tobacco-products-to-21/

Wordless Wednesday – Skiing on a Hawaii Wave: Willy Bogner Film

Snow Skiing on a Hawaii wave?

Skiing in Hawaii

“Skiing Hawaii” a short film by Willy Bogner:

[youtube=http://youtu.be/ya9sDipOb8o]

Hawaii Residents Can Spot the International Space Station Tonight

Hawaii residents can spot the International Space Station tonight (depending on clouds). It will be visible beginning tonight, Wednesday June 25th at 8:22 PM.

Spot the International Space Station tonight.

Spot the International Space Station tonight.

It will be visible for approximately 3 minutes.  Maximum Height: 60 degrees, and it will appear in the North Northwest part of the sky and disappear to the East.

Census Bureau Hiring Hilo Field Representative

The US Census Bureau is currently recruiting a Part-Time Field Representative in the Hilo area of the Big Island.

Testing and Interview Session will be this Friday at 10:00 AM at the Big Island Workplace Connection off Kinoole Street in Hilo.

Space is limited so call 1-800-992-3529 to reserve a space.
Census Hilo Job

Department of Health Fines Hawaiian Commerical and Sugar Company for Over 400 Violations

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) Clean Air Branch has issued a Notice and Finding of Violation and Order (NFVO) to Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company (HC&S) for excess emission and reporting violations that occurred from 2009 to 2013 in Puunene, Maui.

Hawaii Sugar Fine

A penalty of $1,335,000 has been assessed for the alleged violations. HC&S may request a hearing to contest the violations within 20 days of receiving the NFVO.

More than 400 violations were documented by DOH’s extensive records reviews of HC&S’s semi-annual reports, deviation letters and additional information submitted by HC&S. A copy of the NFVO, which includes a complete list of the violations, may be viewed at http://health.hawaii.gov/cab/Issued Formal Notices of Violation and Order

Through the air permit process, the DOH ensures companies comply with state and federal emission standards to minimize air pollution impacts on the public. The DOH Clean Air Branch (CAB) protects the people and environment of Hawaii by monitoring air quality and regulating businesses that release pollutants into the air.

The CAB reviews and approves air permits, evaluates and enforces state and federal air standards, conducts inspections, and investigates reported incidents related to outdoor air quality.

Medical Marijuana Dispensary System Task Force Formed

The Public Policy Center of the University of Hawaii at Manoa is convening the Medical Marijuana Dispensary System Task Force to develop recommendations for the establishment of a regulated statewide dispensary system for medical marijuana to provide safe and legal access to medical marijuana for qualified patients.

Medical Marijuana

The first meeting was held today, Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 9:00 AM in Conference Room 325 of the State Capitol Building.

The task force will submit a report of its findings and recommendations, including any proposed legislation, to the Legislature no later than 20 days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2015.

For more information, please contact:

Susan M. Chandler, Public Policy Center · 956-4237

Representative Della Au Belatti, House Health Committee Chair · 586-9425

Peter Whiticar, Department of Health · 733-8443

Big Island Police Arrest and Charge Two With Numerous Offenses Following Break-In at Kona Resort

Two men have been arrested and charged with numerous offenses following a break-in at a Kailua-Kona resort.

At 2 a.m. Saturday (June 21) Kona Patrol officers responded to a report of a burglary at a resort off Aliʻi Drive near Walua Road. A 33-year-old California man reported that he returned to the resort and discovered that items, including his rental car key, had been removed from his hotel room. The car was gone from the parking lot.

Police investigation led to the identity of two suspects, both who have no permanent address but frequent the Kailua-Kona area.

Sloan Deleon

Sloan Deleon

At 5:45 p.m. Saturday, police arrested the first suspect, 20-year-old Sloan Kalau Deleon, for contempt of court and on a no-bail warrant for violating probation. They took him to the Kona police cellblock while detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section continued the investigation into the burglary.

Leo Corpuz

Leo Corpuz

At 2 a.m. Sunday, police arrested the second suspect, 27-year-old Leo Isamu Corpuz, who was in possession of the stolen rental car and numerous pieces of mail belonging to other persons. The car’s license plate had been removed and replaced with a stolen license plate. Corpuz was taken to the cellblock while detectives continued the investigation.

At 3 p.m. Monday, Corpuz was charged with burglary, unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, six counts of theft, two counts of theft/forgery of a credit card, eight counts of unauthorized possession of personal information, fraudulent use of a motor vehicle license plate and driving without a license. His bail was set at $143,000.

Around the same time, Deleon was charged with burglary, second-degree theft, promoting a dangerous drug and possessing drug paraphernalia. His bail for those offenses was set at $11,000.

Both men are scheduled to make their initial court appearance Tuesday (June 24).

Police urge the public to take the following steps to protect against theft of mail:

  • Use mailboxes with locks.
  • Be familiar with mail pickup and delivery times.
  • Retrieve mail as soon as possible after it is delivered.
  • Place outgoing mail in the box as close as possible to pickup time.
  • Consider renting a Post Office Box.

Police stress that stolen mail can be used for stealing a person’s identity and using it to commit financial crimes that can be devastating for the victims.

24th Annual Hawaii International Tropical Fruit Conference Coming Up

The 24th Annual Hawaii International Tropical Fruit Conference is September 12-14 at the Kahili Golf Course. All attendees registering before August 1 enjoy a discounted fee of up to $75; visit hawaiitropicalfruitgrowers.org for details.

Geared to farmers, educators, orchard managers and proponents of sustainable agriculture, the weeklong event is presented by the statewide Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers (HTFG) and open to the public.

The conference is titled “It’s All About Production” and offers a variety of breakout sessions, plus visiting researchers and agro experts.

Roger Leakey

Roger Leakey

Professor Roger Leakey, crop physiologist, will give the keynote address, “The Domestication of Tropical Trees as New Fruit and Nut Crops.” Dr. Leakey is the former director of research at the International Center for Research in Agroforestry and professor of agroecology and sustainable development of James Cook University in Australia.

Other speakers include tree-pruning expert Dr. Yoshimi Yonemoto of the Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences, who will offer “Training and Pruning for Production,” He will demonstrate how to keep mangos under 5 feet tall and produce copious amount of fruits, while Dr. John Preece of the USDA and National Clonal Germplasm Repository in California will discuss “Vegetative Propagation of Difficult Woody Plants.”

Considered the world’s leading expert on post-harvest technology, the University of Hawai’i’s Dr. Robert Paull will do a dinner presentation on “Phenology, Productivity and Profits.”

Ken Love of the Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers displays varieties of mangos grown in Hawaii.

Ken Love of the Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers displays varieties of mangos grown in Hawaii.

HTFG Executive Director Ken Love says intimate breakout sessions will cover specific crops, while delving into a wide range of topics like “Selling to Whole Foods” by Steve Carey and “Soil Vitality and On-Farm Mentoring” by Vince Mina. Breakout presenters include Scot Nelson, Gabe Sachter-Smith, Craig Elevitch, Tom Baldwin, Brian Lievens, Leakey, Yonemoto, Preece and Paull. In addition, there will be Sunday roundtable and panel discussion touching on marketing and “Where Do We Go from Here?”

The annual gathering continues September 15-19 with day-long mini sessions in Molokai, Oahu, Kauai, Hilo and Kona. Mini-conferences will include presentations by speakers, plus on-site visits to member’s farms and greenhouses.

Registration forms and fee schedule are available at www.htfg.org or by contacting Love at kenlove@hawaiiantel.net or Mark Suiso at suiso@aloha.net.

Impact of RIMPAC, Balancing the Benefits

Dozens of ships from nearly two dozen countries are arriving in Pearl Harbor this week for the start of RIMPAC – Rim of the Pacific Exercise. RIMPAC 2014 will be held in waters and airspace in and around Hawaii for five weeks beginning June 26.

On Board the USS Ronald Reagan during the 2010 RIMPAC exercises

On Board the USS Ronald Reagan during the 2010 RIMPAC exercises

RIMPAC brings international participants together to foster and sustain cooperative relationships. Training during RIMPAC builds credible, ready maritime forces that help to preserve peace and prevent conflict.

RIMPAC is hosted by U.S. Pacific Fleet, which is headquartered here, and led by U.S. Third Fleet, which is headquartered in San Diego and will have most of its key staff here throughout the exercise. The exercise will be based at Navy Region Hawaii, which includes Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, and the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai. Training will also be held at Marine Corps Base Hawaii and several other locations in the state.

USS Lake Erie (CG 70) fires a Standard Missile-2 during exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012. Twenty-two nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC exercise from Jun. 20 to Aug. 3, in and around the Hawaiian Islands. The world’s largest maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of the sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2012 is the 23rd exercise that began in 1971. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW/EXW) Derek R. Sanchez/RELEASED

USS Lake Erie (CG 70) fires a Standard Missile-2 during exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012. Twenty-two nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC exercise from Jun. 20 to Aug. 3, in and around the Hawaiian Islands. The world’s largest maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of the sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2012 is the 23rd exercise that began in 1971. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW/EXW) Derek R. Sanchez/RELEASED

Hawaii’s operating areas and ranges offer realistic, relevant training opportunities like nowhere else in the world.

Participating service members will focus on land, sea and air training in addition to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, maritime security operations, sea control and complex warfighting procedures.

Submarine surfaces next to the USS Chung-Hoon during the 2010 RIMPAC Exercises

Submarine surfaces next to the USS Chung-Hoon during the 2010 RIMPAC Exercises

Environmental stewardship and protection of marine mammals are always top priorities during naval operations. In the weeks leading up to RIMPAC, crews receive training on sighting marine mammals and required protective measures. Participants follow established and approved procedures to minimize the potential impact on marine life.

Some Temporary Noise and Crowds

With 25,000 participants coming to Hawaii, noise, crowds and traffic will increase in the last week of June and through the end of July. But with the temporary inconveniences, there are tangible and intangible benefits to the state.

According to the Hawaii State Department of Business and Economic Development and Tourism Research and Economic Analysis Division, the initial economic benefit for RIMPAC 2014 is projected to be $52.5 million, based on the number of exercise participants and their time in port.

By the end of RIMPAC, officially Aug. 1, the overall economic benefit is expected to be tens of millions of dollars higher than $52.5 million after purchases of supplies, fuel and food or the spending by family and friends of participating personnel are calculated.

RIMPAC Line UpAlso, after experiencing the Aloha spirit of the people of Hawaii and seeing the natural beauty of the ʻāina, the visiting spouses, children, extended family members and friends of participants are expected to return home and “talk story” about the islands, extending the benefits for years to come.

Raising Discussion of Garage Door Openers

During RIMPAC some remotely operated garage door openers may be temporarily affected. This can occur if the device is a type (FCC-regulated but unlicensed Part 15) that operates on frequencies reserved for federal government systems.

Remotely controlled garage door openers legally operate at a very low power on an unlicensed basis. Therefore, they can be affected by electromagnetic activity that is generated by navy ships, civilian boaters or other sources.

Such devices may not work properly from time to time, especially if they aren’t pointed directly at the door. If that happens, drivers may have to remove the opener from their sun visor and point it directly at the door. If the opener still doesn’t work right, garage door owners may have to open and close their doors manually or consider other options for a short time.

The Navy is required to test commercial surface search radars in port prior to getting underway and as part of scheduled maintenance. Surface search radars are available commercially, used by civilian boaters and not a safety issue. Exercising safety is a top priority for the Navy.

To be sure their garage door opener will function properly, owners may want to check with their garage door company. At least one company in Hawaii asks their customers to be patient in dealing with the inconvenience, “for a short bit of time, [but] for a lifetime of safety and freedom.”

The LCAC Hovercraft that transported me out to the USS Essex.

The LCAC Hovercraft that transported me out to the USS Essex

To learn more about RIMPAC, please visit http://www.cpf.navy.mil/rimpac/2014/
For questions about RIMPAC, please call the Combined Information Bureau. Media can call 808-472-0240. The general public is invited to call 808-472-0235.

Body of Missing Free Diver Recovered Near Turtle Bay – Identified

The Coast Guard has recovered the body of a missing free diver approximately 10 miles offshore of Turtle Bay.

Nick Spokaeff

Nick Spokaeff

Nicholas Spotkaeff was located by a good Samaritan who was boating offshore.

The good Samaritan contacted local authorities and a Coast Guard 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boat crew was diverted to the scene.

The body was was recovered and transported back to Haleiwa Harbor where local emergency medical personnel were waiting.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family members during this extremely difficult time,” said Capt. Shannon Gilreath, Coast Guard Sector Honolulu commanding officer. “Our gratitude goes out to all those involved in the search who helped bring it to closure.”

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Honolulu received a report from crewmembers at Ocean Safety regarding the missing 56-year-old male free diver who was last seen swimming with his son in the vicinity of Ka’ena Point, Saturday.

The son lost sight of his father when he was on shore and the father was approximately 100 yards north of Ka’ena Point.

An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, the crew of the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Kittiwake, homeported here, a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boat crew from Coast Guard Station Honolulu and crews from Ocean Safety and the Hawaii Fire Department searched for the man.

UH Hilo College of Arts and Science Announces Spring 2014 Dean’s List

The following students in the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo College of Arts and Sciences have been named to the Dean’s List for the spring 2014 semester.

UH Hilo Moniker

They include:

Leilani Maijastina Abaya, Janjake Z. Abedania, Jenna Louise Acia, Nicholas Jack Ackerman, Anthony A. Actouka, Melissa Ellen Adams, Robert Wallace K Adviento, Breanna Teiko Ann Aguiar, Brittany Rachael Ahn, Ka’alalani Wilson Ahu, Jessica Ann Akiona, Alston Alika Albarado, Erica Kathleen Amundson, Tiani Arlana Sachiko Anang-Shimabukuro, Keehinani Mikiala Victoria Andrade, Anshuka Anshuka, Brandi J. Antonio, Krista Natsuko Aoki, Shanley Apele, Brandon Scott Tsuyoshi Arakaki, David James Arakawa, Justin King Shan Tooru Araki-Kwee, Megan Lilinoe Araujo, Jamie L.H. Araujo-Rosa, Kana Asama, Colleen Marie Aubrey, Heather Rae Bailey, Christan Sadao Balicoco, Paul Jacob Barch, William Judson Barden, Sydney Lee Barney, Ashley Alexa Bass, Peter Charles Bennett,

Lars Arthur Bergstrom, Alyssa Ann Berry, Jahnu D. Best, Aaron James Bishop, Kalaiakea Mary Blakemore, Alize Marie Blas, Kyra Lynn Blue, Lindsey Siqian Bohnert, Casey William Bolger, Audrey Claire Bonk, Jocelyn Anne Borek, Zachary Edward Boysen, Sari Anne Breitenfeldt, Anashe Brooks, Chanelle Marie Brooks, Kavan Peter Brown, Benjamin Garrett Browning, Kevin Alexander Bruce, Ashley Dawn Buasriyottiya, Kailah Michelle Buchanan, Sydney Maemi Cabanas, Blythe Sierrah Cabanting, Kacie R.K.K. Cabarloc, Goody Butay Cacal, Joseph Kuali’i Lindsey Camara, Vada Grace Cambio, Sheryl Lyn Ubaldo Cariaga, Imelda Auxiliadora Da Conceicao Carlos, Sean Leo Carlos, Devin Lee Kaikane Carlson, Renee Francis Carlson, Vanessa Lynn Carlson, Christina Noel Cauley, Tani K. Chamberlin, Emily Jane Puamahina Charman, Matt Chen,, Katlin J. Chesney, Marymargaretrose Cheung-fuk, Alexis Yuk Lan Ching, Kealii Andrew Cho, BoRam Choi, Skyler L.H. Chun-Ming, Kobie Lehua Clarke, Jordan Bledsoe Concannon, Nicole C. Conley, Taylor Alexandra Coons, Caitlyn Nicole Corfey, Renee Lynn Corpuz, Elyssa Rae-Ann Correia, Alysha Ann Kehaulani Cosier, Leanne Elizabeth Crain, Trixie Alice Croad, Angel Lee Cruz, Angeline Marie Cruz, Andrea Kae Dacar, Chelsey Mae Dahl,

Alric Alvarez Dalere, Angelo Davis, Victoria Gladys Davis, Theodore Joseph Maka’iwi DeRego, Liliana Gene DeSmither, Megan Piilani Noelani Decoito, Axel Junior Defngin, Thomas M. Dela Cruz, Kanoelani Kikue Delatori, Dustin Casey Kuikahi Delima, Kasen Kamuela Delos Reyes, Cassidy James Puuone Dixon, Jesse Marco Dodt, Stacie Emiko Doi, Noah Patterson Dolim, Shaylin K. Domingcil, Ryan S. Domingo, Ryder Pueo Donahue, Jason Heyes Donaldson, Pedro Dos Santos, Katrina Elise Downey,

Mike Dowsett, Kaylie Lynn Drew, Alejandra Evajean Duarte, Julie Padua Duhaylongsod, Sarah Itai Dunaway, Aubrie Elaine Eaton, Jacqueline Frances Economy, Louise Marie Economy, Rachel A. Edwards, Tiffany Marie Epping, Tiffany Grace Erickson, Chelsey Hali’ilaulani Erickson-Vierra, Richard M. Esterle, John Richard Evans, Zachary Chung Everett, Christina Marie Evert, Maria Carla Sampang Felix, Rachel Anne Sampang Felix, Emily Fernandes, Sharrylei Fernandez, Erik Daniel Ferreira,

Chelsea Kahealani Field, Tiffany Danielle Fisk, Doug Walter Fitzpatrick, Hannah Louise Flanery, Carlee Hope Fleck, Kayleigh Elizabeth Flynn, Joseph John Fontana, Amber Rose Fontes, Amanda Kathleen Ford, Amber Marie Forrestal, Cory Aikau French, Joshua Allen Fuentes, Kana Fujihira, Kendra Akemi Fujioka, Keri Reiko Fujiwara, Ashley Ayaka Fukuchi, Ryder Kaleikoa Furukado, Summer Galon-Mizusawa, Geralynn Cadelina Gamayo, Dayna Lynn Pu’unani Ganigan, Jeremy Ramos Ganir, Desha Ann Hiroko Napua Gapusan, Grace Christina Garberson, Jonathan Robert Garnett, Wilfred Tyler Gee,

Zachary Geisterfer, Emma-Lei Ohalani Gerrish, Hattie Le`a Gerrish, Tuan Giai Giang, Rachel Michelle Gorenflo, Kiersten Gabrielle Gormeley, Lauren K.A.H Grace-Finley, Christine Louise Gray, James Cecil Green, Rachel Grace Greenbach, Ava Shruti Kartik Greenwood, Amanda Lee Grelock, Jessica Lynn Griffiths, Kylie Judith Grogg, Kalai Kamalanai Michiko Grothmann, Ole Christian Hagestad, Rebecca Ann Hahn, Brittany Krystal Hale, Ivana Mahealani Hall, Jamaica Ann Hancock,

Kawehiokaiulani Mieko Elizabeth Hanohano, Jenna M. Harburg, Margaret Alyse Harris, Shane Allen Harrison, Alexander Dean Hedglen, Jordan Kekoa Esprecion Heltz, Zachary David Kahue Heltz, Karl Robert Hennen, John Gregory Herman, Alexandria Aspen Herring, Brad Pono Higa, Caitlin Rose Higa, Garret Hayato Ly Hino, Iris Hsing Mei Hirayama, Karlie Marie Hoekstra, Rebecca K. Hogan, Corinna Marie Holfus, Emily Kuho’oki’eki’e Ferreira Holt, Eric Miller Holub, Blake Y. Honda, Brock G. Honda,

Tiana Nanayo Kuuleialoha Honda, Alyssa Michelle Hoshide, Asia Carolynne Howe, Samantha Ai Howell, Christina Huckfeldt, Adrian Takeo Huff, John Mead Hunter, Laura Elizabeth Ibbotson, Zachary Kanoeau Vili Ifo, Kai Aaron Igarashi, Kadi Mie Igawa, Chihiro Inaguma, BeeJay Idian Ines, Kevyn-Bren K. Inouye, Carrie Ga lai Ip, Kelsey Kazuyuki Ito, Linda Gabriela Ixtupe, Rina Mae Vinluan Jabilona, Jessica Jacobs, Erika Rose Jardin, Alyssa Patricia Jasso, Joahnna Javaluyas,

Haley Sue Jerman, Michael Jerry, ShoaAxum Salasse William Johnson, Casey Marshall Jones, Kyle Kepano Jones, Mikayla Jade Jones, Kaycie Chiemi Jyo, Jarin S. Kadooka, ‘I’inimaikalani Keali’ikua’aina Kahakalau, Morrisa Shaye Kahakui, Kawena Kuulei Kahui, Ayaka Kajiura, Kaimipono Shane Kajiyama, Tira Makanamaikalani Kamaka, Cami Chieko Kanahele, Tia Lee Kauiheleole Kanoe, Kawehi Mariko Kanoho-Kalahiki, Noelani Satsuki Kansaku, Evianne Elise Keeney, Marina J. Kelley, Ashley Irene Kennedy, Richard Maxwell Kerr, Ada Kettner, Ara Kim,, Duk Hwan Kim, Hyelim Kim, Macie Yoshiko Kim, Peter Allen Kim, Mary Louise Yasuko Kimura, Satoko Kin, Gavin Cole Kinoshita, Rachel Alana Kishimoto, Christopher Zdenek Kluzak, Amber L. Koker, Eivind Kolaas, Hyesun Kong,

Daniel Jacob Konkler, Nada Kotaishova, Kristen Rachel Krieger, Kealiiahonui Alik Kuikahi, Johann Wei-Xin Kuipers, Luke Andrews Kupcha, Franchael K. Laimana, Meadow Rose Lambert, Amy Gaylene Landers, Brittney M. Lane, Tynan Cody Lazarus, Junbeom Lee, Robert A.F. Lee, Shanda Leilani Lee, Jobe Kekoa Angel Leialoha, Meredith June Lenz, Cynthia Marie Lilleston, Hannah Ida Lipman, Sarah Anne Lips, Elijah C.R. Livingston, Danalynne Ki’ilani Llacuna, Kawehi Marie Kane Lopez, Michael Ryan Lovell, Alyssa Kealohi Loving, Chari-Ann G.. Luis-Calvo, Blaine CM Luiz,

Kristy Lynn Lungo, Alayna Rachelle Leilani Machacek, Meghan Bailey Makanani, Ian Tadashi Makida, Kate Manzano Malasig, Ashley Alohilani Alyce Maldonado, Kayla Anne Malott, Amber K. Manini, Kerson Tachedesel Mariur, Keelee Jade Martin, Shae Alexandria Massie, Anna Claire Masuda, Amber Sunshine Masulit, Carle-Ann Kaiulani Mata, Sheena Eulani Mathews, Kelley Kurt Matsumoto, Evan Seki Matsuyama, Mathew Robert Mauldin, Joseph Edward Maxwell, Meghan Renee Meier McGrath, Angelo Alcino Menezes Guterres Aparicio, Chad Ethan Miguel-Harris, Bryce Evan Miles-Leighton, Thane Bryan Milhoan, Francis Blake Miller, Jessica Aurora Miller, Maikai Koonohiokala Miller,

Emily Hannah Minakin, Amanda Joan Minney, Ashley Masae Minobe-Nacua, Norman Zuniga Mogote, Celina Ilikea Monge, Ariel Kahoniahiku Moniz, Sherise-Charity Moani Keala o ka awapuhi Moniz, Hannah Moore, Michael J.M.K. Mulkey, Koran Nichole Munafo, Lindsey Kealohalani Elilai Muranaka, Kenneth Kansuke Nagata, Angela Fumiko Nakamura, Richard Toshi Nakamura, Kerri Mika Nakatsu, Remi Nakaza, Robynn Ailynn Ines Namnama, Cameron Robert Nance, Kirstie Kanoelani Akemi Naone, Byers Hoapili Naope, Allyssa Leilani Nau, Jordan Lyle Keoni Nauka, Kara Marie Nelson,

Anjenette Viernes Nicolas, Jaysen Christopher Niedermeyer, Scott Laurence Nielsen, Nina Kawehi Nihipali, Mikiko Ninomiya, Anela Lani Nishimoto, Lindsey Lani Nishimura, Allen Gail Yvette Niere Nitura, Nicole Chelsea Jean Nonies, Rochelle N. Nowaki, Angelica M. Nuyen, Daniel Bernard O’Halloran, Michelle Rico Odasco, Steven Mitsuaki Ogi, Zechary Palaina Okamoto, Stephanie-Leanne Shigeko Okumura, Helio Miguel Arcanjo Oliveira De Araujo, Jenae Marie Olson, Morgan Olson, Karen Konohikiokalani Ota, Hiroyuki Otsubo, Evan Kauanoe Oue, Jamie Jungeun Ouye, Wesley Dean Owens,

Aimee Lynn Leinaala Pacheco, Cheynielle Minoakalani Pacheco, Ciera Moanilehua Pagud, Basanta Raj Pahari, Fagalima Lenell Paleafei, Bronson Paul Amio Palupe, Isaac Kuuiponohea Pang, Kirsten Leigh Pang, Jannah Gaile Pante, Marian Grace Andrada Paras, Kirsty Zeandra Parker, Kristine Pasek, Kara Lianne Paulachak, Casey Jay Low Pearring, Kristin M. Pedersen, Kori Laine Pedraja, Jessica Marie Penaranda, Elizabeth Mischell Pennock, Kahiau Raymond Tatsumi Peralta, John Henry Albert Pezzuto, Kaylie Renee Pickup, Loaa K Pine, Hye Jin Piper, Robert Frank Piper, Robert Michel Pipes,

Tyler Melvin Vermudez Pitpit, Kyle Robert Pittman, Arwen May Potochney, Zachary Alan Pratt, Stevan Premovic, Ashley Ray Pugh, Kori Gaila Quander, Vernon Kalani Quiocho, Laurel Rain, Micah Rhobelyn Tunac Ramos, Crystal Jenna Rances, Rachel Lily Rechtman, Stacey Elisabeth Reed, Jessica Ramos Regpala, Maricel Masing Reid, Chelsey Kristin Rickert, Adan William Rodrigues, Koa Henry Damien Rodrigues, Analysa G. Rodriguez, Rebecca Marie Rogers, Saul David Rollason, Gerry Abergido Romero, Kainoa Kamakani Rosa, Makoa Rosa, Kevin Lewis Rose, Robin Christian Rudolph,

Alicia Marie Ryan, Ardena M.J. Saarinen, Christa Nicole Sadler, Julie Anne Garo Sagabaen, Michelle Ruiz Sahagun, Sam Saidi,, Karl John Sakai, Francis Elliott Sakai-Kawada, Nalei Kapua’a’ala Sampson, Gabriella Martiza Sanchez, Teresinha Santos Da Costa, Christlynn Mary Sappa, Christian Keakaokalani Saragosa, Chelsea Midori Sato, Sigrid Dingle Shizuko Sato, Michael Al Seizen Sayaboc, Emily Linden Schneider, Jordan Scott Scrivner, Samantha Lee Shaw, Justin Yukio Shiigi, Albert Eugene Shim, Hyungchul Shin, Keani Keiko Kamalani Shirai, Sheldon Mitsuru Shishido,

Stephanie Lee Shor, Rebecca Nicole Short, Desiree Luana Shortt, Bennjamin Paul Siemers, Laurie Simon-Boursier, Michelle Rose Smith, Samuel Cabot Smith, Sheila M. Soledad, Sondre Solstad, Carrie Ann Soo Hoo, Ryder K. Souza, Ashley M. Spencer, Ashlin Hope Stahlberg, Ken Lloyd Stallman, Kristen Emily Stalter, James Stilley, Taylor Stokesbary, Natalie Rose Strauss, Cole M.M.M Stremski-Borero, Andrea Stroescu, Caroline Michele Stromick, Jeremy Martin Suguitan, Michael James Takeshi Suguro,

Gary Loui Sur, Yvonne L. Sylva, Caitlin Symons, Dillon K. Tacdol, Hazel Pontanes Tagalicud, Nako Takaki, Tara Miyoko Takamori, John James Gregorio Taman, Jove Jenn Maalihan Taman, Casey Hiroichi Tamura, Wing Sing Tang, Reuben Blake Tate, Alana K. Tavares, Ashley Carol Terrell, Sarah Rose Theesfeld, Rachel Lorraine Thompson, Natasha Marie Thorell, Tyler Thornhill, Sherise U’ilani Johanna Tiogangco, Zachary Tman, Ashley Anne Toland, Taylor Tomita, Ashley Chanel Nobuko Tomori, Jennifer Leigh Trujillo, Jonathan M. Truslow, Kyle Kenta Tsubota, Peter Aaron Tuck,

Shanece Kekainani Turner, Lincoln Moses Tyler, Michelle Emiko Uchida, Christine Joy Calabucal Ucol, Stephanie L. Valant, Korie Lihau Maelia Valeho, Keith Joseph Valentis, Sage Trinidad Van Kralingen, Mark J. Vancamp, Rosella Manja Vaughn, Sage Arianna Vecchio, Jasmine Bae Star Venegas, Shelby Ann U’ilani Vickers, Conan-Cordero Laahia Vierra, Lindsay Marie Vik, Robert Benito Villanueva, Anthony Paul Vizzone, Christopher Vito Vizzone, Nelson Vo,, Michael Edward Voight, Maria Karin Walczuk, Emily Grace Wallingford, Laurence K. Walsh, Claire Elvrum Warner, Sondra Michelle Warren, Valerie Kelly Wasser, Hunter Samuel Wilburn, Brittany Nicole Willbrand, Courtney Taylor Williamson, Joshua Aaron Willing, Henry Chico Wilson, Katherine Elizabeth Wilson,

Leah Adele Wilson, Christina Mei Lin Wine, Stacey Marie Witt, Corey George Yamaguchi, Kelli Emi Yamane, Takuhiro Yamashita, Nicholas William Yamauchi, Eddie Iosinto Yeichy, Darcy Kamalani Yogi, Nicole Michiko Yoneishi, Carl Katsumi Yoshida, Bithiah Yuan, Ye Lin Yun, Marikka Chihiro Zavas, Yuri Alexander Zhuraw, James Hugh Ziegler, Jessica Haley-Lauren Zima-Lee, and Anastasia V. Zosim.

At DOI Hearing, Grassroot Institute Disputes Department’s Authority to Recognize a Hawaiian Nation

Grassroot Institute offers comments questioning legality of and support for a Hawaiian government

Today, the Department of the Interior held the first of a series of public meetings intended to solicit comments on a proposed rule that would, “facilitate the reestablishment of a government-to-government relationship with the Native Hawaiian community.”

Hawaiian Sovereignty Sign

The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii was one of several groups to offer comments and testimony on the proposed rule. In its written comments, the organization urges the Department of the Interior not to pursue the proposed rule, pointing out that there is no historical basis for a Native Hawaiian government as envisioned by the rule; that there are serious questions as to the legality of the nation-building process; that there is a distinct lack of support among Native Hawaiians for the creation of a Hawaiian nation; and that the Department does not have the authority to recognize a Hawaiian government.

In commenting on the question of recognizing a Native Hawaiian government, Keli’i Akina, Ph.D., President of the Grassroot Institute, emphasizes that the only such historical relationship was with the Kingdom of Hawaii, a multi-ethnic state that would not qualify as a race-based tribe:

“[T]he Supreme Court has been clear that tribes are political and not racial entities. The procedure for recognizing a tribe does not include the creation of one where no such entity existed.  While the historical circumstances of the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy may be cause for debate, it is undeniable that there has never been an exclusively Native Hawaiian tribe or government either at the time of the overthrow or in the 120 years since.”

In addition, Grassroot pointed out the lack of participation in the Native Hawaiian Roll process as evidence of a general lack of support among Native Hawaiians–especially given the fact that the majority of those enrolled were imported via other lists. Moreover, there remain serious questions about the constitutionality of the race-based Roll process and the concept of a race-based tribe or government in general.

Disputing the authority of the DOI to act in this matter, Dr. Akina commented that:

“The Department of the Interior does not have the authority to recognize a Hawaiian government because the Constitution gives Congress the power to ratify treaties and recognize tribes. Neither the Executive Branch nor the states have the power to create or recognize a tribal government, which thereby makes both the existing nation-building process and any action by the Department of the Interior vulnerable to legal challenge.”

Dr. Akina, who was present at today’s hearing for the purpose of reiterating the Grassroot Institute’s written comments, was optimistic about the outcome of the DOI hearings.

“Though we believe the Department’s proposed rule to be precipitous, unconstitutional, and unwise, there is a silver lining,” he stated. “To date, many of the questions about the formation of a Native Hawaiian government have been ignored. While we may be no closer to getting answers to our concerns, we do have a forum to voice them. The expensive, time-consuming effort to tribalize Native Hawaiians has done little to help the state or the Native Hawaiian community. This is an excellent opportunity for the average citizen to have their voice heard on a critical issue that threatens to divide and reshape our state.”

Grassroot Institute’s written comments on the proposed rule can be read in full here: http://new.grassrootinstitute.org/2014/06/grassroot-institute-comments-on-proposed-doi-rule/

Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia Arrive in Tahiti

Papeʻete, Tahiti: Hōkūle‘a and Hikianalia—the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s voyaging canoes—were greeted in Tahiti with celebrations commemorating the special relationship between Hōkūleʻa and Tahiti that began with her maiden voyage to French Polynesia 38 years ago. President of French Polynesia, Gaston Flosse, and other dignitaries welcomed in the Polynesian Voyaging Society captains and crew.

The Hokule'a reaches landfall.

The Hokule’a reaches landfall.

The canoes made landfall at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 22. Sarah Vaki, sister of Hikianalia crew member Herve Maraetaata, travelled from her home in the Marquesas to Tahiti to continue a tradition of singing an arrival song for the canoes once they are within sight of land. Heremoana Maatuaaihutapu gave the Tahitian greeting for Hōkūleʻa that his father, Maco, gave in 1976.

In a gathering after the crew made landfall, a special declaration of “Mālama Honua” and pledge to care for the oceans was presented to President Gaston Flosse and master navigator Nainoa Thompson. Tahiti’s Mālama Honua declaration brought together a diverse group of organizations in a pledge of support. Thompson will take this declaration to the United Nations conference in Apia, Samoa, as well as all future ports during the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines. “I was here in 1976, and the people of Tahiti gave us a great gift—they told us that we are family and to be proud of who we are as Pacific people,” said Thompson, amid applause. “Tahiti changed Hawaiʻi forever, and 38 years later, you hand me this Mālama Honua declaration to protect the ocean, and give us hope again.”

Media and the public are invited to attend events throughout the Worldwide Voyage’s time in Tahiti:

Monday, June 23, through Thursday, June 26 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.: Global Education Village with booths and displays about navigation and Mālama Honua efforts.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014, 6:00 p.m.: Nainoa Thompson presents on navigation techniques and the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage at the University.

Sunday, June 29, 2014, 2:00 p.m.: Ceremonial renaming of Paofai beach to Hōkūle‘a Beach by Gaston Flosse, President of French Polynesia.

Backpack Drive for Kids Who Can’t Afford to Buy Them

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is proud to participate again in a backpack drive for children who cannot afford to buy them. As in previous years, all police stations around the island will double as drop-off points for persons interested in helping children in need. Backpacks may be dropped off between June 23 and August 30.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks will be distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.

This is the sixth consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry).

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.