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| Hawai‘i owes the feds $700M. Businesses may have to pay the tab.
Hawai‘i’s recession-stricken businesses are on the hook for a massive loan the state took out to pay unemployment benefits to people who lost their jobs during the pandemic. Now lawmakers wonder how those businesses can possibly be expected to pay that money back. Civil Beat.
Vaccinated travelers could be exempt from quarantine, testing by spring
Lt. Gov. Josh Green said a final decision will depend on a CDC study that is investigating whether people who are vaccinated can still spread the disease. Hawaii News Now.
The battered state budget will dominate the next state Legislature
With money tight, lawmakers are looking to the Biden administration and Congress to help shore up a huge deficit as the 2021 session opens this week. Civil Beat.
UH and DOE brace for budget cuts
Millions of dollars in budget cuts to the state Department of Education and University of Hawai‘i system are expected to be finalized Thursday during separate board meetings for both departments. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
Lawmakers still hope to pass climate legislation in 2021
Last year’s legislative session was largely derailed, but climate advocates want this year to be different. They’re planning to introduce bills related to electric vehicles, energy-efficient buildings, and shoreline erosion. Hawai‘i Public Radio.
What the new federal COVID-19 relief bill means for Hawaiʻi employers
The $900 billion pandemic aid bill passed by Congress at the end of 2020 aims to drive more money to small and minority-owned businesses, which makes it particularly relevant for Hawai‘i. Hawaii Business Magazine.
Beloved ASL interpreter for state dies from COVID-19 complications
Patty Sakal, a veteran sign language interpreter and inspiring leader for the hearing-impaired community, died during a trip to California. KHON2. Hawaii News Now.
Community health centers awarded $1.3M grant for telehealth services
The Freeman Foundation and Hawaiʻi Community Foundation awarded $1.3 million in grants to 14 federally qualified health centers across the state, according to a news release. Maui Now.
|HAWAII BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Register today for 2021 Small Business Summit
The first ever Small Business Summit has been created to help Hawaiʻi's small businesses address the challenges we are all facing as we begin to emerge from the pandemic and turn toward recovery. If you own or manage a small business, you will want to hear from our local and national speakers on topics including governmental response to the crisis, how to use big data for success and more. Click here to register today!
| Hundreds get immunized at O‘ahu’s first mass vaccination site
The soggy weather didn’t deter kupuna from filing into the cruise ship terminal at Pier 2 Monday morning for their COVID-19 vaccine. But health officials are worried there isn’t enough vaccine to sustain demand. Nearly all of the 12,800 appointments are full through Jan 27. Hawaii News Now. Honolulu Star-Advertiser. KHON2.
Bar owners appeal to leaders to lift restrictions
Bill Comerford and John Harrison have each owned and operated bars in Honolulu for decades. They say that if COVID-19 restrictions aren't lifted soon, they will lose their businesses. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
|HAWAII BUSINESS MAGAZINE
2 Local Surveys About 3 TopicsSurveys of business leaders and the general public ask about your future actions, diversity at your workplace and who uses which social medium. Respondents in recent surveys were asked how their future behavior would be affected once a vaccine for COVID-19 has become widely available... read more.
| Why aren't more kids back in school?
Despite relatively low infection rates on the Big Island, some schools have opted to continue distance learning this quarter while others are working to bring students back to campus. Administrators say they face numerous hurdles in making plans. Tribune-Herald.
Big Isle pediatricians to DOE: "Open our schools"
In a letter to Superintendent Christina Kishimoto and local complex area superintendents, six East Hawai‘i pediatricians recommended students return to full-time, in-person learning without delay. Tribune-Herald.
Information Technology Companies of 2021
These trusted technology firms help local companies reach consumers, market their products and keep their business thriving... read more.
| New rules requested by Mayor Mike Victorino take effect today
Among the measures, stores must limit capacity to 30%. Travelers to Maui need a negative result from a COVID-19 test and must download the AlohaSafe Alert app to help with contract tracing. KHON2.
Entrance, parking fees to Wai‘ānapanapa State Park will start in February
Commercial vehicles and individual tourists will have to register and pay before visiting the remote Hana park. Maui News. Maui Now.
|Funding for road resurfacing projects has plummeted
The county estimates it will receive about $10.625 million in general excise tax revenue this fiscal year, down about $7.46 million from the year before. Garden Island.
Hearing on home exemptions is set for Feb. 8
The county Department of Finance has planned the public hearing to discuss proposed amendments to home exemption rules. Garden Island.
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