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Commentary – Former Councilman Airlifted to Oahu, Cardiac Care Unit Wanted at Kona Hospital

Former Council member Dominic Yagong is the latest high profile community member to be airlifted for heart or stroke problems to Maui Memorial or Queen’s on Oahu. Please ask your Hawaii State Senator and Council members to include a Cardiac Care unit in the state budget. It would be $2 million to remodel the ER at Kona Community Hospital and money for a stipend for two cardiologists.

Yagong posted the following on his Facebook page:
“Medivac to Queens hospital tomorrow morning. Spending the night in Waimea ER after experiencing severe chest pains at Basketball game in Honokaa. Sorry girls for missing announcing your game. I’ll be fine,,,,got my lucky Green Bay cap with me! Thanks Kahea for calling EMT. No worries…thumbs up!”

THE PROBLEM: There is a 2- hour window when patients need to be treated in order to expect a full recovery. Think about where you live on the Big Island. From my home it would take 45 minutes to get to Kona Community Hospital Emergency Room, then the time to be diagnosed and then get the helicopter and then the 45 minute + time to Oahu, getting checked in and a cardiologist hopefully is at the hospital and you need to be seen, an Operating Room hopefully is available. Get the picture? Other important island residents to be airlifted are Mayor Kim, Council Chair Pete Hoffmann and OHA Representative Bob Lindsey.

I talked to an architect who specializes in building hospitals and a medical planner at NBBJ Architects. There is currently no facility or any cardiologists to staff a dedicated cardiac care unit for West Hawaii. We agreed that Kona Community Hospital (KCH) was the best location for a Cardiac Care unit. Kona Community Hospital has one cardiologist, Dr. Michael Dang who travels from Honolulu. Dr. Larry Derbes is an interventional cardiologist in private practice in Kona, who agrees that a Catheterization Lab to do stents and ablations and to treat strokes, would save lives and result in better outcomes and quality of life for cardiac patients. He is eager to help. I talked to Jay Kreuzer, is the CEO of KCH, and has also been a cardiac patient. He pointed out that staffing the Catheterization Lab is the biggest challenge because we lose doctors, because the Medicare reimbursement rate of only 93% of the actual cost is compounded by Hawaii Medical Services Association (Hawaii’s biggest healthcare insurer), which compensates at only 110% of the Medicare Reimbursement. He told me that there is an airlift almost every day from KCH to either Queens in Honolulu or Maui Memorial and they are usually for heart or stroke patients.
I also met with Dr. Frank Sayre, Chair of the Board for the West Hawaii Regional Hospital Board of Directors, which oversees Kona Community Hospital and the North Kohala Community Hospital. He agreed with Jay Kreuzer. He told me that he had discussed setting up a “funded chair” for specialists (similar to academic chairs) as a stipend to keep doctors on the island.
SOLUTIONS:
1. A HYBRID CATHETERIZATION LAB/ OPERATING ROOM FOR KONA COMMUNITY HOSPITAL was recommended by architect and planner. The recent flooding of the Operating Room at KCH presents an opportunity to remodel the Operating Room and accommodate Cath Lab equipment.
2. STAFFING: An annuity with the Hawaii Community Foundation or the Kona Community Hospital Foundation to generate a yearly stipend for two cardiologists to establish a “chair position.
Please get in touch with your State Representatives and State Senators to include these items as allocation in their Budget Legislation for the coming year.
There has been some discussion about building a new hospital sometime, but even if that were started tomorrow, it would still take about 6 years to be built, with land acquisition, EIS, plans, hiring a contractor and building. We need a Cardiac Care unit NOW to save our friends and family and allow heart attack and stroke patients to recover fully and at home on our island. Please ask your Hawaii State Senator and Council members to include a Cardiac Care unit in the state budget. It would be $2 million to remodel the ER at Kona Community Hospital and money for a stipend for two cardiologists. Healthy people are happy people.

For more information go to this site: https://debbiehecht.com/2016/06/21/a-cardiac-care-unit-for-the-big-island-of-hawaii/

Debbie Hecht
Kailua-Kona

Big Island Chronicle’s Complaint Against County Clerk to Be Held Tomorrow

According to the Honolulu Civil Beat, Big Island Blogger and Journalist, Tiffany Edwards Hunt of The Big Island Chronicle, will be going before the ethics board tomorrow to have her complaint against the Hawaii County Elections Office and in particular Jamae Kawauchi heard by the ethics board.

Council Chairman Dominic Yagong testifies while Edwards-Hunt tends to her child and pecks away on her phone during a recent hearing.

Big Island Video News posted this video that gives a pretty good vibe to what’s going on in the case:

[youtube=http://youtu.be/e3C_LdJ0ANc]

The Civil Beat reports:

“The Hawaii County Ethics Board on Wednesday is scheduled to hear a complaint against Jamae Kawauchi, the Big Island’s embattled clerk, alleging she violated county code in her handling of the island’s elections.

The complaint is another in a series of varied — and mostly unsuccessful — attempts to hold Kawauchi accountable for the ongoing elections saga that many say have jeopardized the democratic process on the Big Island.

But what sets this complaint apart is the person behind it: Big Island reporter Tiffany Edwards Hunt. Journalists don’t usually file complaints about the people they cover.

Kawauchi has stirred quite a fuss among members of the media statewide, many of whom say she’s been less than forthcoming with them about why elections operations went so awry and what she was doing to remedy the problems. Patchy communication has become a major theme in recent conversations about the county clerk. Indeed, stories about the county clerk and the Big Island’s botched primary usually include a line saying she didn’t respond.

In fact, Kawauchi did not return calls from Civil Beat seeking comment for this story…”

You can read the extensive write up done by the Civil Beat here: Big Island Reporter Files Ethics Complaint Against Hawaii County Clerk.

Candidate’s Forum Tonight at Aunty Sally’s Luau Hale

Candidate’s forum tonight, Tuesday July 10th at Aunty Sally’s Luau Hale from 5-9pm. We will have voter registration info, info tables from many different organizations, and light refreshments will be served.

At least 26 candidates have agreed to attend so far, including Wendell Ka’ehu’ae’a, Russell Ruderman, Bob Marx, John Carroll, Lorraine Rodero Inouye, Brittany Smart, Denny Coffman, Harry Kim, Dominic Yagong, Lincoln Ashida, Paul Dolan, Ken Goodenow, James Weatherford, Zendo Kern, Karen Eoff, Chelsea Yagong, and many MORE! Candidates will be making short speeches and will be available for informal talk story sessions. A town hall forum will begin at 7:30. Please bring your questions and a friend! Check this web site for more info http://7wiseideas.org/

Sponsored by Occupy Hilo, Pele Defense Fund, Puna Pono Alliance, Ohana Ho’opakele, Malu Aina, Aloha Uprising, Na Kupuna Moku o Keawe, Heiau o Lono, Na Koa Lohe o Ke Akua, and MKrug

Mayoral Candidates on Radio and Online Shows

Three of the six Hawaii County mayoral candidates will be guests for one-on-one interviews on the Sunday morning radio and online show, Island Issues, with host Sherry Bracken.


The interviews are all on Sunday mornings, at 6:30 a.m. on KKOA 107.7 fm and online, www.koacountry.com, and at 8 a.m. on LAVA 105.3 fm and online, www.lava1053.com.  The interviews are then posted to the news web site, www.bigislandnewscenter.com, they’re posted down on the right along with the most recent Island Issues programs for online listening or downloading.

County Council Chair Dominic Yagong:  Sunday, June 17
Mayor Billy Kenoi:  Sunday, June 24
Former Mayor Harry Kim:  Sunday, July 15

In addition, the Mayor candidates will be at at least three forums around the island.

Thursday evening, July 5, Sangha Hall, 6 p.m.  This is a moderated forum sponsored by Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce, Japanese Chamber of Commerce, Hawaii Contractors Association, Kanoelehua Industrial Area Association, and Hawaii Island Board of Realtors.  Admission by ticket only, call Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce.

Monday evening, July 9, Kealakehe High Cafeteria, 6 p.m.  This is a moderated forum sponsored by Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce, Kohala Coast Resort Association, West Hawaii Today, Kealakehe High, and others. County Prosecutor candidates will be part of forum too.  Free admission, no tickets needed, food sales in advance at 5:15 by Kealakehe High Parent Teacher Organization.

Thursday evening, July 12, Waimea Middle School Cafeteria, 5:15.  Each candidate will get opening remarks and then it will be a “speed dating” format where candidates go from table to table.  Also County Prosecutor, State House, State Senate.  Sponsored by Waimea Community Association and 11 other organizations. Free admission, public is invited.  Snacks available.

Hawaii County Mayoral Race… A Poll

Former Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim filed his official nomination papers to run for Hawaii County Mayor again which really throws an interesting twist into the mayoral race.

Many have speculated that if Kim did enter… it would cause many folks to not vote for Mayor Kenoi.

With the possible split of votes… this could very well open the door for Councilman Dominic Yagong to just slide in there as the elected mayor.

If the elections were held today, who would you vote for?

[polldaddy poll=6287836]

Councilman Yagong’s Daughter Chelsea Files Nomination Papers for District 1 County Council Seat

I just read the following from Chelsea Yagong, the daughter of Hawaii County Councilman Dominic Yagong (who is resigning his seat to run for the Hawaii County Mayor position the following):

Chelsea on the left (Photo from her Facebook album)

It is official…today I filed papers to run for Hawaii County Council, District 1.

This is the perfect time to get involved with government. With all the technological advancements, more and more people are paying attention and holding their elected officials accountable. I would love to be in a position where I can effect positive change for our community.

It is also very important that we, the younger generation, step up to the plate and get involved with government. We need to be part of the process. All the decisions being made today, are effecting our tomorrow. Let’s be proactive, get educated and make a difference.

I would really appreciate your support in this up coming primary election, on August 11, Saturday. REMEMBER you must be a registered voter to participate in the election…I have attached a link to the voter registration forms. Please fill out the form and send it in by JULY 12!! That is the deadline to register to vote in the primary election.

If you have any questions, or would like to support my campaign…please feel free to give me a call at 808-333-0528, or email: chelsyagong@yahoo.com

Thank you!!
Chels

Hamakua Community Project Updates With Council Chairman Yagong at Honokaa People’s Theater

Council Chairman Dominic Yagong invites the public to a meeting to update the community on projects in the Hāmākua Area.  Project updates include the Ahualoa Well Project, Kapulena Well Project, Honoka‘a Sewer Connection Project, Lehua Sidewalk Project, and the leasing of County lands in Pa‘auilo.

Honokaa People's Theater

“So many things are happening in Hāmākua, and we will provide time to discuss other matters as well,” said Chairman Yagong.  Meeting is on Monday, March 19th at the Honokaa Peoples Theater beginning at 6:30pm.  For information, call Yagong at 961-8538.

Hawaii County Councilman Dominic Yagong to Challenge Mayor Kenoi for Big Island Mayor’s Office

Hawaii County Council Chairman Dominic Yagong has announced that he will run for the the Mayor of the Big Island in 2012.

Click to go to the "Team Yagong" Website at http://teamyagong.com

Is Hawaii County Council Opening Pandora’s Box?

I got to love the thought that a few members of our council have opened up the Hawaii County Tip Line.

Unfortunately, I think it’s going to get closed down rather quickly.

They are allowing anonymous folks to call in and report about things with out valid facts behind them.  This Hawaii County Tip Line is paid for with our tax dollars… so therefor anything recorded on that tip line should be available for the general public to hear.

I may ask to hear these recordings in a few days just to see what type of stuff is being said on this tip line.  If I’m denied access to these recordings… I may have to remind them about the Hawaii State Office of Information Practices.

Council Chairman Yagong is going to be the Wizard of Oz and the keeper of the magic box:

…The phone is located in my Chairman’s Office in Hilo, and people can leave their message with a name and number if they want a return call.  However, calls can also be placed anonymously if you so desire…

However, Yagong goes on to state that these phone calls will only be available for review in executive session… What’s up with that?

It is my intention to provide a monthly report to council at an executive session for their review.  Names and phone numbers (if provided) will be redacted from the report.   If a caller wishes not to be part of the executive session report, please indicate so on the message and your call will not be included….

So I believe that the newspapers will soon be asking for the contents of these recordings soon enough… I know I’m thinking about filing an OIP request.

What could come out of Hawaii the Hawaii County Pandora Box... LOL

Anonymous Tips Being Accepted by Hawaii County Council… The County Council Tipline

Media Release:

Hawaii Council Chair Dominic Yagong has a special message for those who wish to express their concerns but would like to remain anonymous. Please read on for more information:

808-932-2999 County Council Tipline

“Phone number 932-2999 has been set up as a County Council Tip Line to provide county employees and the general public the opportunity to call anonymously (if they choose) to report any concerns, impropriety or suggestions on how we can improve County operations.   It is my hope that many great ideas can come forward, and if there is a potential problem we can be pro-active and help address issues important to our employees and county.   The phone is located in my Chairman’s Office in Hilo, and people can leave their message with a name and number if they want a return call.  However, calls can also be placed anonymously if you so desire.

It is my intention to provide a monthly report to council at an executive session for their review.  Names and phone numbers (if provided) will be redacted from the report.   If a caller wishes not to be part of the executive session report, please indicate so on the message and your call will not be included.

This service is being implemented at NO ADDITIONAL COST to the taxpayers.  We took one phone line that was assigned to the Chairs staff (former # 961-8017) and replaced with a pre-assigned number provided to the County of Hawai‘i.  No additional phones were purchased and there will be no increase to our County Clerk budget due to this service.
If you have any questions regarding the County Council Tip Line, please do not hesitate to call me at 961-8264.

Warmest Aloha – Council Chair Dominic Yagong”

Councilman Yagong Featured in “The Asian Journal”

I just noticed that Councilman Yagong was featured in “The Asian Journal” today.

yagongfilam

You can view today’s copy of this widely spread paper here under the Column “The Voice of FilAmerica

Or you can link directly to the article here.

Councilman Yagong Answers Viewers Questions Online

Segment of a couple of callers questions to Hawaii County Council Representative Dominic Yagong, from the August 16th 2009 live online broadcast courtesy of  http://www.bigislandlive.com/

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9v33DGdP8w&hl=en&fs=1&]

TODAY: ONLINE Meeting With Hoffman, Pilago and Yagong

ONLINE MEETING With Hoffman, Pilago and Yagong

Big Island residents are invited to call in and be part of the show for this live broadcast via the internet on www.bigislandlive.com. Calls will be taken at (808)-769-0998. This edition of Big Island Live will be hosted by Kristine Kubat. Pete Hoffmann will be first up at 5:30, and he will be talking about the proposed restructuring of the County Council. Joining him will be former council chairman, Angel Pilago. There is a public hearing coming up on September 14th about the restructuring. Callers should limit their questions to this subject.

Next up is Dominic Yagong, and he will be addressing the proposed sale of the Hamakua Sugar lands that the county acquired in 1994 for delinquent taxes from Hamakua Sugar Company. This sale will be addressed in the upcoming council meeting in Kona. Again callers should try to limit their questions to this subject.

*UPDATE* THIS SUNDAY @ 5:30 Call In for Live Internet Interviews With Councilman Dominic Yagong and Pete Hoffman Joined by Angel Pilago – TOWN HALLS ONLINE?

Media Release:

Big Island residents are invited to call in THIS SUNDAY, August 16th  @ 5:30 pm and be part of the show for this live broadcast via the internet on www.bigislandlive.com. Calls will be taken at (808)-769-0998. This edition of Big Island Live will be hosted by Kristine Kubat.

Pete Hoffmann will be first up at 5:30, and he will be talking about the proposed restructuring of the County Council.   Joining him will be former council chairman, Angel Pilago.  There is a public hearing coming up on September 14th about the restructuring. Callers should limit their questions to this subject.

Next up is Dominic Yagong, and he will be addressing the proposed sale of the Hamakua Sugar lands that the county acquired in 1994 for delinquent taxes from Hamakua Sugar Company. This sale will be addressed in the upcoming council meeting in Kona.  Again callers should try to limit their questions to this subject.

Locally produced shows, such as surf footage, music videos and interviews with prominent Hawaiian figures and kupuna will also air after the interviews, and be available for download.

The network will eventually bring to the viewer live news breaking stories as they happen on the Big Island.

If you have an idea for a show,  please contact  Big Island Live at (808)-327-9659

The Big Island Live Broadcasting Network is dedicated to the people of Hawaii, providing an outlet for multimedia coverage of breaking news and live entertainment on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Councilman Yagong Speaks Out

Phaethon Keeney has an interesting interview with Councilman Dominic Yagong where he talks about the recent Count Council reorganization.

Recently there has been a lot of discussion about the reorganization of the County Council, and I thought it would be great to know a firsthand account of what happened. So over the weekend I sat down with my elected Councilmember Dominic Yagong to get a clearer picture of the controversy. Here’s what he had to say…

More Here

What Really Happened to Councilman Yagong

sunshine

Councilman Yoshimoto on Live Streaming… But Wait… Goodenow Says ADA a Problem Still?

I got the following email from Councilman Yoshimoto in reply to the same letter that I sent to Councilman Yagong that I blogged about earlier.

This is Councilman Jon Yoshimoto’s response to Live Streaming:

Thank you for your email.  We are in the process of looking into having live streaming video of our council meetings that could possibly result in considerable savings to the county.

Here lies the problem so Kenneth Goodenow states:

Thanks for taking the time to think of this. Actually, we have looked at free-streaming. Corporation Counsel gave the go ahead, regarding advertising being done on the site, but the problem is ADA requirements for live transcriptions – both Corporation Counsel and HR have advised that it would be dangerous not to provide for live transcriptions as these are official meetings. This would add significantly to the cost and is not part of our current RFP that includes transcription for delayed broadcasts. Earlier this year we determined we would should wait and go out for a new RFP to take into account live transcription (and other matters relating to our new location and the possibility of an automatic camera system, etc.) when our current contract expires 06 /30/10.

But Wait just a minute… Goodenow already said ADA wasn’t the problem in a response to the Big Island Chronicle’s inquiry on March 24th:

“Tiffany:

The previous clerk’s policy was not to respond to postings on blogs. I’m not sure if I want to get into that habit as well. Despite that, since you have requested a response, here is one:

I agree that the ADA doesn’t mandate that live hearings have transcriptions for captioning (though this is not entirely clear – our lawyers tell me is that if the cost burden is weighed and found to be unreasonable, we can forgo the captioning). If, however, the transcripts are to be kept for reviewing as was part of the request for proposals that was conducted by the Purchasing Division of the Finance Department with the specifications as provided last year, then transcripts or captioning are needed (the idea for web-casting first came up as an idea to provide archives via the internet which could be searched by subject matter or bill, resolution or communication number). As we already have a contract that includes transcription for captioning (not instantaneous), we would have to either modify our existing contract with Out of the Sea (if found by the Finance Department not to violate the Procurement Code) or wait for their contract to end and go out for a new RFP. This route was decided as there were other options to consider such as the design of the new council chamber, software designed for legislative bodies going paperless, voice activated cameras, etc. The $12,000 per year figure we received was the lowest bid on the request for proposal sent out by the Purchasing Division.

So I replied back to Goodenow and Yagong the following:

The live streams DO NOT require ADA mandates. The State LEGISLATURE BROADCASTS AND STREAMS LIVE MEETINGS W/OUT THESE MANDATES… WHY SHOULD Hawaii County Council?

Council Meetings are streamed live all across this country on the internet.

Is there something I’m not understanding?

“Using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk service, you can get audio transcribed for less than $1 a minute with a 24-hour or less turnaround” and have that on the site as well!

Damon Tucker

Folks… I really don’t like getting the run around!