Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kohala Middle School Science Fair Students Visit Capitol

Participants in the Hawaii State Science Fair from Kohala Middle School take time out of their schedule for a tour of the Hawaii State Capitol and talk story with Rep Nakashima over lunch.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Kawailii Stream Bridge

Construction on Kaiwailii Stream Bridge is moving forward and completion is expected at the end of summer.  Replacement of the bridge became necessary after it was damaged in the Kiholo Bay earthquake of October 15, 2006.  The contract was awarded a year ago to Hawaiian Dredging for $4.399 million and will involve historic documentation and demolition of the existing bridge, constructing a replacement concrete bridge with seismic upgrades, making improvements to roadway approaches, installing new guardrails and bike railings, and removing the temporary detour road.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Tanohata Benefit

Recently, the Kohala Community held a benefit for the residents of Tanohata, Japan.  The Tanohata Village was devastated by the tsunami that hit Japan.  According to Mayor Kanji Kamitsukue of Tanohata, as of April 30, 2011, 18 people were dead and 22 were missing, 583 houses were damaged and over 540 people were forced to live as refugees.

Tanohata was selected because it is a small community much like Kohala and has a cost line that very much resembles the lush Kohala coast.

Kohala resident Hana Kuwabara Anderson coordinated the event.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Kohala High School Class of 2011

Commencement ceremonies were held at Hisaoka Gym in Kapa'au for the graduates of Kohala High School on Saturday, May 21, 2011.  Guest Speaker, Ms. Jessica Brown, Language Arts Teacher at Kohala High School spoke of how this class inspired strange unexplained occurrences and surprised the seniors with a "flash mob" rendition of Michael Jackson's Thriller!

Class Flower:  Tiare
Class Colors:  Green and Black
Class Mascot:  Shark

Honoka'a Graduates Class of 2011

Honoka'a High School graduated 148 seniors at commencement exercises held on Saturday,
May 21, 2011 at the Honoka'a High School Gymnasium.

The Class motto"  "Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference."

Class Colors :  Green and Black
Class Flower:  Lous
Class Mascot:  White Tiger
Parents, family and friends gather to congratulate graduates following the end of graduation exercises.

Laupahoehoe Graduation Class of 2011

Laupahoehoe High School Commencement Exercises were held at the school's gymnasium on Friday, May 20, 2011.  Principal James Denight welcomed the parents, staff and guest to the ceremony and graduates listened to words of wisdom from keynote speaker Mayor Billy Kenoi.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Hawai'i Wildlife Center Executive Director Linda Elliott

Linda Elliott is the founder and Executive Director of the Hawai'i Wildlife Center, now under construction in Hala'ula, Kohala, Hawaii.  When the center is complete, it will be a state-of-the-art facility for the rehabilitation of sick, injured and contaminated native wildlife.

Linda is a graduate of Kalaheo High School and holds a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from Arizona State University and is the only oiled wildlife response manager in the region.  Linda's passion and dedication for wildlife began before she was ten years old.  She will tell you that her earliest life defining moment was when she saw the movie, "Born Free,"  From that point forward, Linda has pursued her passion for wildlife and conservation.  It is hoped that with continued financial support, it is hoped that the center will be able to be completed before the end of the year.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Kohala Armory

The Kohala National Guard Alumni contacted my office regarding possible use of the old Kohala National Guard Armory.  The property sits in the middle of Kamehameha Park and the former guardsmen were hoping to use the facility for a meeting place and club house.  This seemed like an easy enough request and a call was placed with the Hawaii Department of Defense (DOD).  This is where the story got a little tricky.
It seems that after the National Guard abandoned the property, a closure report was made and the property was turned over to the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR).  The property was deeded to the Territory of Hawaii by Kohala Sugar Co. for the expressed purpose of housing an armory.  The deed provided for return of the property at the point that the government no longer needed the property for an armory.  Initial discussions with Dole Foods, the successor to Kohala Sugar went unanswered and the issue was dropped.
I am currently working with DLNR, DOD and the Attorney Generals Office to try and determine how to go about resolving this issue.  There is a need to remove some material from the property and the departments are currently at odds on how this will be accomplished.  There may be a need for legislation to direct that this be resolved and that negotiations commenced to remedy the ownership issue.  It is hoped that once the legislation is in place, negotiations can commence to allow for the clean up of the property and allowing the Guardsmen entry to the property for a meeting place and club house.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Honoka'a High School Relay for Life

The Honoka'a High School Leadership Class Relay for Life once again brought together students, community leaders and organizations for a night of fun, fellowship and fundraising to benefit the American Cancer Society.