hpr news

State Legislators Unveil Affordable Housing Initiative

12 hours ago
Honolulu Habitat for Humanity

House Bill 2748, dubbed the "Bob Nakata Act," recognizes the former state senator and lobbyist for his many years of advocacy for affordable housing. At a news conference yesterday, legislators said they made good on their resolve to do something bold to address the shortage of affordable rental housing. The $200 million agreement aims to jumpstart construction by reducing building costs.

Flickr

Governor David Ige proclaimed today, April 25, ʻŌhiʻa Lehua Day in Hawaiʻi. Over the past eight years, millions of ʻōhiʻa lehua trees on Hawaiʻi Island died from a fungal disease known as Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death. Not much was known about the disease until now. HPR Reporter Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has this stoy.

Franz Jantzen / Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments yesterday in Hawai’i’s challenge to President Trump’s latest travel ban. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.  

Wayne Yoshioka

A new law was signed today that will drive public electric companies in Hawai’i to consider their customers first. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports. 

Sherry Bracken

Drug issues continue to contribute to crime on all islands, and that includes the Big Island. Contributing reporter Sherry Bracken talked with Hawai'i County’s Police Chief to find out what he sees as the biggest drug issues on Hawai'i Island.

One week after historic rains swamped the north shore of Kauaʻi, communities at the end of the road remain isolated. While geographic isolation raises unique challenges in disaster recovery, it always strengthens this community’s self-reliance. HPR’s Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has this story.

Wayne Yoshioka

A bill to create restricted pesticide-free buffer zones around Hawai’i schools is currently stalled at the legislature. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Schatz Pushes for Debt Free College

Apr 23, 2018
Sakeeb / Flickr

$1.4 trillion. That is how much Americans nationwide owe in student loan debt. All of that debt has some policy makers worried, including Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz. He sponsored the Debt Free College Act of 2018 - with the goal of making public higher education affordable without the need for student loans.

Honolulu Councilmember Goes After Monster Home Violators

Apr 23, 2018
Catherine Cruz

City enforcement of zoning and building laws has been a chronic problem. After one local contractor, Brilliant Construction, continued building after receiving an order to stop. City Councilmember Ikaika Anderson is trying to get tough on violators.

Radio Reading for the Blind

Apr 20, 2018
Catherine Cruz

Throughout the week, The Conversation looked at various volunteer opportunities across the state. To close out the series, The Conversation's Catherine Cruz looked into the Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled; which provides services for only a fraction of the thousands of people across the state who are either born blind, or have lost their vision later in life.

Wayne Yoshioka

The Honolulu City Council is attempting to close loopholes in some of the city’s ordinances. And, they’re targeting sidewalk vendors and golfers. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Financial Relief for Flood Victims

Apr 19, 2018
Catherine Cruz

Promises of additional flood relief are pouring in from the government as well as private donors. Facebook mogul Mark Zuckerberg pledged a million dollars and eBay Founder Pierre Omidyar already donated $200,000 in disaster relief. Residents of East Honolulu and Waimanalo may also be eligible for federal state and county assistance after those communities were declared disaster areas by Governor David Ige yesterday.

Tension High Over Airport Rideshare Pilot Program

Apr 19, 2018
Wayne Yoshioka

Long simmering tensions between the local taxi companies and transportation network companies, Uber and Lyft, erupted again. The spark was a public hearing to discuss a pilot program that allows the ride sharing companies to pick up and drop off passengers at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu. The state quietly extended the program until September, and yesterday was the first time taxi and limousine drivers had a chance to vent before the Small Business Regulatory Review Board.

Flickr

Think human beings are rational thinkers when it comes to money? Think again. An estimated two thirds of Americans have received or anticipate receiving a tax refund this year – and logic has little to do with how we will spend it. HPR Reporter Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has more.

Wayne Yoshioka

Local efforts to mandate more timely upgrades for the Navy’s Red Hill Fuel Storage Facility on O’ahu failed in the Legislature this session. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Hundreds Rescued from Kauai's North Shore

Apr 17, 2018
DVIDS / U.S. Coast Guard

Following the weekend flooding, the Hanalei District - including Wainiha and Haʻena, faced heavy damage. The Hanalei River became swollen, and many neighborhoods and farmlands flooded. Emergency rescue crews evacuated 152 people by helicopter, 121 by bus and others by water. Currently, it is an active search and rescue effort.

Wayne Yoshioka

The State Budget is in a joint conference committee this week to work out Senate and House differences.  One state agency has been on the short end of the appropriations stick for decades.  HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.   

 

 

 

Mark Ramelb
Mark Ramelb

Contact Hawai’i is proving to be Honolulu’s most intellectually and visually stimulating annual art exhibition.  The 2018 show opened with multiple installations in Waikiki and continues at the Honolulu Museum of Art School.  HPR’s Noe Tanigawa reports the jurors’ combined perspectives yielded a show with energy and insight.

TMT Still Committed to Hawaii, For Now

Apr 16, 2018
Thirty Meter Telescope

The board of the legally beleaguered Thirty Meter Telescope deferred on a decision to relocate the project to the Canary Islands. The announcement came last week following the passage of a Mauna Kea construction ban by one house of the state legislature. Bute a move is not off the table.

Kauai Surf Co.

A bill before the State Legislature may make it harder for new landowners in Hawaiʻi to clear title to their piece of paradise. Proponents of the bill say it would help native Hawaiians preserve ancestral lands. HPR Reporter Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has more.

Wikipedia

Haleakalā National Park is one of Maui's most popular visitor draws. But starting this year, park officials vastly reduced the number of tour companies allowed to operate in the park. One business that didn't get a contract had to shut down earlier this month. We get more from contributing reporter Colleen Uechi.

Wikimedia Commons

The board of directors for the Thirty Meter Telescope is meeting this week to decide whether to extend its April deadline. More time would allow legal proceedings to play out but none of that may matter after today’s floor vote in the state Senate. HPR’s Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi reports.

Wayne Yoshioka

The House Health and Human Services Committee is trying to pass a bill to put illegal care homes out of business. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Ku'uwehi Hiraishi

The generations-old tradition of seaweed cultivation in Hawaiʻi is making a comeback. Seaweed or limu is an important part of the traditional Hawaiian diet, but it’s abundance in recent years has been diminishing. HPR’s Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has more.

Wayne Yoshioka

Hundreds of bills at the State Legislature passed critical floor votes in the House and Senate today.  But the work is far from over as lawmakers head into the last 14 days of the 2018 session. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Contact Zone: Waikiki

Apr 6, 2018
Noe Tanigawa
Noe Tanigawa

This year, one of Honolulu’s most important annual art exhibitions is taking its theme of contact and connection right into our tourist capital.  Contact Hawai'i is bringing live art installations and displays to the middle of Waikiki tonight.  HPR’s Noe Tanigawa reports.

Wayne Yoshioka

The “Death with Dignity” legislation was signed into law in Hawai’i today. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Albatross Colony Under Threat from Unlikely Predator

Apr 5, 2018
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A remote atoll within the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is home to an extraordinary collection of seabirds. More than 3 million converging on a tiny space: some 1500 acres. It’s the only nesting ground for two seabird species that face an imminent threat from an unlikely source: invasive house mice that attack and kill nesting Black-footed albatross and Laysan albatross.

Tobacco Restrictions Considered at the Legislature

Apr 5, 2018
ECig Click / Flickr

Lawmakers are taking up two bills today, one making the University of Hawaiʻi a tobacco-free zone and another to restrict access to e-cigs to those under 21. The Hawaii Public Health Institute supports both measures.

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