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3.8.2021
 
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Hawai‘i bankruptcy cases down 32.4% from last year
Bankruptcies in February fell below 100 for the second month in a row, according to new data released by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Hawai‘i. There were only 92 cases last month, compared with 136 in February 2020. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Fewer farmers are growing Hawai‘i’s "miracle food" taro 

Growing, cultivating and cooking the starchy root vegetable, which is used to make poi, is hard work that’s not always profitable. Production has declined in the past decades, in part because of barriers to accessing land, water and infrastructure. Civil Beat.

Lawmakers end efforts to revamp oversight of watchdog agencies
House leaders have decided against pursuing most measures aimed at controlling the state auditor, although investigation into that office continues. Civil Beat.

What’s dead and alive at the Hawai‘i Legislature
As the Legislature heads to a deadline Thursday for all bills to clear their originating chamber, scores of measures have already been killed or failed to gain traction. Of the more than 2,800 bills introduced in January, only about 10% will make it to the governor’s desk by the end of session. Civil Beat.

Hawai‘i missile defense radar is still in limbo
The Missile Defense Agency is back seeking public comment on two possible locations for a powerful ballistic missile defense radar on either the North Shore of O‘ahu or the west side of Kaua‘i — both looking toward North Korea. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

DOE guidelines allow athletic workouts, practices
Student athletic workouts and practices can start as early as today, according to state Department of Education guidelines released on Friday. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now.

Head of Hawai‘i's Roman Catholic Church says J&J vaccine is morally acceptable
Church leaders believe Johnson & Johnson's version is "morally compromised" because it is produced using a cell line derived from an aborted fetus. But an exception was made if neither the Pfizer or Moderna version is available. KITV4.

Low COVID-19 counts are key to restoring tourism
Continued low case counts in Hawai‘i and an accelerated vaccine distribution are expected to play key roles in boosting the tourism sector. Vaccinations for ages 70 to 74 begin today, with younger ages to follow soon. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. KHON2.

 
 
Oswald Stender | Photo courtesy of Jane Marshall Goodsill
 
HAWAII BUSINESS MAGAZINE
The Transformation of Hawai‘i
When Jane Marshall Goodsill set out to collect people’s recollections of her father, what she gathered was so much more. The personal recollections in the book “Voices of Hawai‘i: Life Stories from the Generation that Shaped the Aloha State” take readers inside events that transformed the Island... 
read more.
 
OʻAHU
 
Federal authorities zero in on Kaneshiro campaign donors in next phase of corruption probe
A parade of Keith Kaneshiro’s campaign donors testified last week before the federal grand jury that is hearing evidence against the former city prosecutor. Hawaii News Now.

Rail board believed HART’s former director misled on costs, records show
Dan Grabauskas, who resigned as director in 2016, says the assertions that he misrepresented the numbers are flatly incorrect. Civil Beat.

Honolulu’s housing director has new plans to tackle homelessness
Mayor Rick Blangiardi’s point person on the homeless issue is Office of Housing Director Anton Krucky, who favors moving away from routine police involvement. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

As rising seas invade Waikīkī resorts, the state proposes adding more groins
A draft environmental impact statement is being prepared for a $12 million Waikīkī Beach Improvement and Maintenance Program, which envisions constructing structures makai of the waterline, dredging sand and placing it on the shore. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Residents puzzled that a 150-seat lū‘au is allowed but weddings are limited to 10
The Hilton’s Starlight Lū‘au was moved indoors to a ballroom Friday because of bad weather. While the event followed city rules concerning restaurants and commercial attractions, those rules are stirring confusion. Hawaii News Now.

 
 
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The UH Hilo Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy’s dramatic roof forms and patterned façade blend traditional references to the organic lava flows of Pele with the structured sequencing and geometries of contemporary science and medicine. | Photo: courtesy of WCIT Architecture
 
SPONSORED BY WCIT ARCHITECTURE
Cultivating Authenticity in Design
What makes the places in which we live, work and play here in Hawai‘i hard to replicate anywhere else in the world? WCIT Architecture highlights a few ways you can integrate our islands and culture into your own space... read more.
 
HAWAIʻI ISLAND
 
Roth eases outdoor gathering rule
Mayor Mitch Roth has amended his COVID-19 emergency rule to increase the size of outdoor gatherings from 10 people to 25, subject to approval by Gov. David Ige. Tribune-Herald.

Federal grants prop up county travel budgets
Some county departments plan to dramatically increase their travel budgets for the fiscal year that starts July 1, after an austere period that saw Zoom events replace traditional off-island conventions. West Hawaii Today.

Handling the gun surge: $545,760 grant to help police department process permits
Requests for gun permits and registration on Hawai‘i Island almost doubled in 2020 compared to the previous year. A federal grant approved Wednesday by the County Council will help automate registration and improve record keeping. West Hawaii Today.

Pest alert issued as Ramie moth confirmed on Big Island
The moth, a pest of māmaki plants and their relatives, has made its way to the Big Island’s native forests and neighborhoods, the state Department of Agriculture confirmed last week. It was previously detected on Maui in late 2018. West Hawaii Today.

 
 
Illustration: Getty Images
 
HAWAII BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Buying a Business: More than Just Crunching Numbers

Not wanting to miss out on the potential growth and looking for a fast way to expand, business owners often look at acquisitions as a solution. Buying a business does make sense and can be a great way to expand, but there is a lot more to consider..read more.
 
MAUI COUNTY
 
Growing COVID-19 outbreak at Maui jail has inmates, families worried
Families of people held at the Maui Community Correctional Center are calling for accountability over concerns that the overcrowded jail isn’t taking adequate protection measures. Department of Public Safety data shows that 44 inmates are currently in medical isolation and 211 are in quarantine. Civil Beat.

Real estate is one area of Maui’s pandemic economy that's booming
And it’s not just real estate in Kīhei or West Maui that is selling. All areas of the island have experienced high levels of sales activity this year. Maui Now.
 
KAUAʻI
 
Zuckerberg, Chan to fund relaunch of program that finds jobs for Kaua‘i residents
In 2020, the CARES Act-funded Kaua‘i’s Rise to Work program found jobs for 280 laid-off workers. County officials say the re-start of the program is made possible by support from the Chan Zuckerberg Kaua’i Community Fund of the Hawai’i Community Foundation. Hawaii News Now.

Adolescent center slated for next council agenda
An integrated treatment and healing center was a priority for the late Mayor Bryan Baptiste and then-mayor Carvalho’s administration. Garden Island.

Students march to add menthol to list of banned tobacco flavors
Kaua‘i students joined a statewide anti-tobacco effort with a “March Against Menthol” Sunday on Rice Street. Garden Island.

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MARCH 2021 ISSUE
 
Click here to get your copy of Hawaii Business' March 2021 issue!
Dive into some of our latest features!
20 For the Next 20 Cohort
The Best of Startup Paradise

Construction Industry Still a Bright Spot for Hawaiʻi Economy During Pandemic
How Hawaiʻi’s Light Pollution Affects Wildlife and Humans
 
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