Construction of the state’s largest agricultural park is underway. Last year, Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi offered to dedicate 1,739 acres of land between Honokaa and Waipio Valley as an ag park to help quiet critics of this plan to sell former Hamakua Sugar Company lands to help balance the county budget. Kenoi told the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald” that doing the ag park was the proper course of action. Hamakua Councilman Dominic Yagong agreed, saying “I give the mayor credit for listening to the public and doing the right thing.”
Patrons of Hawaii Island’s public libraries are finding a few changes in the fees charged for replacing library cards and for overdue materials. Under new rules adopted by the Board of Education in May, the Hawaii State Library System is increasing overdue fees paid by children from 15 cents to 25 centes per day. The current maximum fine of $4.50 per item paid by those 17 and younger will increase to $7.50 per item. The cost of replacing an adult library card decreased from $10 to $5.
A draft environmental assessment released on Thursday says construction of a long-promised Kailua-Kona subdivision park could begin by the end of the year. The 1.6 acre park, in the Alii Kai subdivision, was promised to homeowners when the neighborhood was founded more than 40 years ago. According to “West Hawaii Today”, the park will include onsite parking, a comfort station, a pavilion with picnic tables, playground, and other amenities. The assessment says the project will fulfill the commitment by the County of Hawaii for a neighborhood park.
Although Hawaii County doesn’t have enough money to build a new police station near Captain Cook, an environmental assessment sees no significant impact from the facility which could cost between $16 and $17 million. Because of the money squeeze, no date has been set for starting the project. Councilwoman Brenda Ford tells “West Hawaii Today” that the proposed station is extremely important to the fast-growing area between Honalo and Milolii. Ford says she is asking for funding support from the mayor’s office, the state, and the federal government.
The Hawaii Electric Light Company (HELCO) has issued a statement that a power shut-off is scheduled for the North Kohala area for the night of Thursday, August 12th, from 11 p.m. to approximately 5 a.m., Friday, August 13th. The shut-off is necessary to allow HELCO personnel to make repairs to equipment serving the North Kohala area. HELCO recommends that refrigerators and freezers be opened only when absolutely necessary.
The Kona Game Fishing Club-Kusatsu team from Japan won the 51st edition of the Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament off Kailua-Kona. Team captain Teruo Koshikawa attributed his win to the daily ritual of pouring a can of Coors Light beer into the ocean, an act which Koshikawa said was to bless the ocean and show respect for the daily catch.
The County of Hawaii Department of Environmental Management is temporarily closing the White Goods Recycling Area at the Pahoa Transfer Station due to ongoing construction at the site. Residents may take their white goods/appliances to the Hilo Scrap Metal Facility adjacent to the Hilo Transfer Station on Leilani Street. For details, call 961-8270.
Community news: St. Joseph school will hold a benefit rummage sale today from 7 a.m to 2 p.m. in the school cafeteria. All proceeds will help pay for the soccer team’s travel expenses to Oahu.
Community news: The Aloha Club of Hilo is accepting donations for its annual fundraising event today from 7 a.m. to noon. Club members are having a rummage sale, food sale, and plant sale. The club runs a thrift store for those recovering from mental illness. The clubhouse is located at 1045B Kilauea Avenue in Hilo. For details, call Larry at 974-4320.
Notice to motorists: Drivers are advised of the two-day “Bike MS Ride”, a fundraiser for the Multiple Scleroisis Society which takes place today, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m, from Waikoloa to Kapaau and tomorrow (Sunday), 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., from Waikoloa to Kailua-Kona. Major intersection will have police officers directing traffic and assuring that cyclists stay within bike lanes.
Notice to motorists: The state Department of Transportation will begin field investigations or “potholing” to accurately locate existing underground utility lines along the Queen Kaahumanu Highway on Monday, August 9th. The work will start just south of Kealakehe Parkway and continue to the end of the project just north of the Keahole Airport. Lane closures will not be required and the work should result in minimum delay or inconvenience to the traveling public.
Community news: Tickets are now available for the 13th Annual Daniel H. Sayre Memorial Foundation Anniversary Benefit Awards Dinner/Silent Auction, scheduled for Saturday September 4th, at the Fairmont Orchid in the Mauna Lani Resort. The event raises funds to help in the purchase of much needed rescue equipment and training for the Hawaii County Fire Department. For more information, call the Foundation at 329-8067
Community news: Due to the 2nd Annual Don The Beachcomber’s Mai Tai Festival at the Royal Kona Resort, Kahakai Road will be closed in front of the Royal Kona Resort between Huggo’s parking lot and Hale Kona Kai Condominium from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on August 14th. For more information on this road closure, call the Royal Kona Resort at 329-3111.
Notice to motorists: Honokaa area–There will be alternating lane closures on the Hawaii Belt Road in both directions from Pakalana Street to Paauhau Road on Monday, August 9th, through Friday, August 13th, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., for pavement resurfacing. Ka’u area–There will be alternating single lane closures on the Mamalahoa Highway in both directions from Kmaoa Road to Kiolakaa Homestead Road, on Monday, August 9th, through Friday, August 13th, from 7:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., for pavement resurfacing. Kamuela area–There will alternating single lane closures on the Kohala Mountain Road in both directions from Kawaihae Road, near the Waiaka Stream Bridge, to the Kohala Ranch Road, on Monday, August 9th, through Friday, August 13th, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., for pavement resurfacing.
Please submit your community news items at least two weeks before your event. You can send news items by fax at 935-0396 or by e-mail to email@example.com.
Russ Roberts, News Director.