Update 6/21/21: Makaha Bridge, Free Wi-Fi


In response to community concerns, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) plans to apply for a RAISE grant for the Makaha Surfing Beach highway realignment project, which would move the highway further mauka behind the canoe halau and bathroom. DOT estimates that the realignment will cost approximately $75m. They will hopefully know if the grant is approved by around the end of the year.

HDOT Deputy Director-Highways Division Ed Sniffen clarified that the realignment of the highway and the bridge construction are mutually exclusive, and pursuing one will not prohibit the other. In fact, repairing the existing wooden bridges, which are anticipated to last only another two years, will be needed even if the highway is realigned. This is because the existing highway would likely be transitioned into a county beach road if the highway is realigned mauka behind the comfort station.

As the community requested, there will be no temporary bypass during the construction of the bridge, which they anticipate to start in September and complete in around 9 months. HDOT will just close one lane at a time during construction rather than construct a temporary bypass. HDOT will install a steel bridge rather than use concrete, thus the cost of the project should be reduced to around $15m rather than $25m, and the life span of the bridge should be around 30 years.

HDOT is working with Waianae High School students on a project based learning project focused on Makaha Surfing Beach. Components of the students’ project include the bridges, highway realignment, sand replenishment, muliwai, and other issues. To provide further information about the Makaha Bridge project, HDOT is holding a virtual public meeting on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 to discuss planned adjustments to the replacement of Makaha Bridge No. 3 and 3A on Farrington Highway.

The virtual public meeting will be held using Microsoft Teams. Meeting information is as follows:

  • Meeting starts Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at 6:30 p.m.
  • Click here for meeting link: https://hidot.hawaii.gov/…/virtual-public-meeting-on…/Or join by calling 1-808-829-4853 and entering Conference ID: 160 376 080#
  • If you need an auxiliary aid/service or other accommodation due to a disability, contact makahabridges@qr-se.com as soon as possible. Requests made as early as possible will allow adequate time to fulfill your request.

Upon request, this notice is available in alternate formats such as large print, Braille, or electronic copy.

Written comments may be submitted to makahabridges@qr-se.com through June 25.

Planned adjustments to the design are:

  • Use of a pre-fabricated steel bridge instead of a concrete bridge. The change in structure will allow for reduced construction time and better reflects future plans to realign the highway.
  • Elimination of the temporary bypass road. This minimizes the private land acquisitions needed for construction access.

The existing bridges were built in 1937 and are currently ranked as the top two priority bridges in need of upgrade or repair on the State Highways system. Replacement of the bridges does not preclude future realignment of Farrington Highway. Rather, it ensures that residents west of the bridge sites will have continued, safe, access to the highway.


If we’ve learned anything in the pandemic, it’s that access to broadband — that digital superhighway — affects everyone. So how do we help people work or learn from home? One answer already in the works is a pilot project from the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation (HDOT) to help more people connect to the internet, even if they don’t have their own service provider. HDOT Deputy Director for Highways Ed Sniffen is preparing a state-managed WiFi system especially to help rural communities. The project will focus on eight areas: Kalihi, Kapa‘a, Wai‘anae, Nanakuli, Waimānalo, Kau, Puna and Hana. “We’re using the backbone of our state highways and county roadways to extend wireless into underserved neighborhoods,” explained Sniffen. “From my perspective, Wi-Fi is like electricity now. You can’t live without it; you have to have it.”

Access to broadband will be a key part of growing the state’s tech industry. The pilot project, to get under way around this summer, will provide WiFi access to two people per household, devices if needed, and a staffed help desk. Improved wireless mesh connectivity will also be used to increase the efficiency and safety of the state’s highway system and lay the foundation for Hawai‘i to become a test site for connected autonomous vehicles. “The pandemic, when so many people had to operate virtually, made this a huge priority for the state and the federal side as well,” said Sniffen. “Everybody’s aligned to make sure broadband is front and center. We want to make sure we make the most of this opportunity because it’s the key to our next industry for the future.” Federal transportation and broadband funding will be leveraged to pay for the construction and operation of the pilot system.

For more information, visit: hidot.hawaii.gov

SA/AP (5/12/21): Emergency program to give people $50 off internet bill

By Star-Advertiser/Associated Press, 5 May 2021

Americans can begin applying for $50 off their monthly internet bill today as part of an emergency government program to keep people connected during the pandemic.

The $3.2 billion program is part of the $900 billion December pandemic-relief package. The government is increasing spending on broadband as the pandemic made stark that millions of Americans did not have access to, and could not afford, broadband at a time when jobs, school and health care was moving online.

It’s unclear how long the money will last but it’s expected to be several months. Tens of millions of people are eligible, although the Federal Communications Commission, which is administering the program, did not specify a number.

For example, your household is eligible if you receive food stamps, have a child in the free or reduced-price school lunch program, use Medicaid, or lost income during the pandemic and made $99,000 for single filers, or $198,000 for joint filers, or less.

There are other eligibility requirements, too — see https://getemergencybroadband.org to find out if you qualify.

Continue reading

SA (5/12/21): Hawaii food support program for women, infants, and children gets boost in benefits

By Nina Wu, Star-Advertiser, 12 May 2021

Hawaii is offering more financial relief to families through a temporary increase in cash value benefits for its Women, Infants, and Children Program this summer.

The federally funded program provides Hawaii residents that are pregnant, breastfeeding, postpartum, or mothers of children under age 5 with access to food, nutrition education and support.

With a boost from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, the cash value benefit for WIC will increase to $35 for first-use dates during the months of June, July, August, and September.

They can be used to purchase fruits and vegetables at authorized vendors. WIC recipients will also continue to receive milk, cereal, juice, whole grains, beans, peanut butter, and baby food as part of their monthly benefits.

“This pandemic has been incredibly hard on Hawaii families,” said Melanie Murakami, DOH’s Branch Chief, WIC Services, in a news release. “The temporary increase of $35 will allow families to maximize WIC benefits and continue to include more fruits and vegetables into their daily meals while helping ease the extra financial stress they had to endure this past year.”

To learn more about the Hawaii WIC Program, visit health.hawaii.gov/wic.

KITV4: Oahu’s vehicle ‘recon’ inspection program close to shutting down

Senator Maile Shimabukuro: Great news, SB57, which I introduced, should be heading to the Governor for approval next week.  Here is it the latest update:

by Brenton Awa, KITV4 News, Wednesday, 21 April 2021, 3:02 PM HST

According to the State Department of Transportation, current crash data indicates reconstructed vehicles do not pose a safety problem on Hawaii’s roads.

Starting next year, more lifted trucks, dropped cars, and other modified vehicles could be back on Oahu’s roads.

Wednesday, Senate and House committee members passed SB57 which would put an end to Honolulu’s Recon inspection program through 2025.

According to the State Department of Transportation (DOT), current crash data indicates reconstructed vehicles do not pose a safety problem on Hawaii’s roads.

The DOT is also facing limited staff who do not have the training needed to properly inspect these types of vehicles.

The measure would also keep the current Street Rod exemption for vehicles older than 1968 which allows those cars to undergo a less stringent safety inspection.

Lawmakers in both the house and senate are expected to follow the committee’s recommendation to send the bill to Governor David Ige to be signed into law.

The repeal would begin next year and run through at least 2025.


View the KITV news video story here: https://www.kitv.com/story/43723221/oahus-vehicle-recon-inspection-program-close-to-shutting-down

Please Support Surfer Lucy Jarrard’s Olympics Dream

Surfer Lucy Jarrard from Nanakuli

From Senator Shimabukuro: Lucy Jarrard – We’re soooo proud of you !!!!
🏄🏽‍♀️Surfer Lucy Jarrard from Nanakuli aspiring to compete in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics 🏆
GoFundMe Link and Website:

From J.J. Reyes & Cathi Uyemura-Reyes:
Dear Senator Shimabukuro,
RE: Lucy Jarrard, a surfer from Nanakuli aspiring to compete in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics
When my husband, JJ Reyes, and I learned about Lucy Jarrard and her focus and determination, we were impressed. The two of us spent 25 years in Hawaii where our two sons grew up. Our younger son, Jeff Uyemura-Reyes teaches Social Studies at Nanakuli High School. Irregardless of where in the world we might be living, we will always be Kamaaina at heart.
Thank you for your time and appreciate any assistance your office maybe able to offer or introduce her to possible sponsors.
Aloha & Mahalo – J.J. Reyes & Cathi Uyemura-Reyes

From Cathi Uyemura-Reyes (Senior Adventure 365):
Friday, February 26, 2021
Lucy Jarrard, a Surfer from Nanakuli Aspiring to Compete in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics
Aloha Everyone,
Lucy Jarrard is 19 years old and lives in Nanakuli, Hawaii. She is an amateur surfer and is ranked amongst the top surfers in the United States for her age bracket. Lucy hopes to represent American Samoa in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. This will be the first time that surfing will be included as an Olympic event.
Lucy is trying to raise enough money to compete at the International Surfing Association’s World Surfing Games in El Salvador in May 2021. This is a qualifying event for the Olympics. After qualifying, Lucy hopes to raise enough funds to go to Japan in August 2021 for the Olympics.
Lucy currently attends Leeward community college and strives to earn BA degree to either teach on the Leeward Coast on Oahu or open up her own small business related to surfing. It is encouraging to see a young woman who is so focused and determined. She has a healthy attitude, lifestyle, and life goals.
Jeff, our younger son, is the Social Studies Department Head at Nanakuli High and Intermediate School. Lucy was a student in his class during her junior year. Jeff also knows her parents and her younger sister whom he also had as a student. Jeff, and his wife have made a monetary donation to help Lucy purchase her competitive surfboards. J.J. and I are also contributing to help Lucy advance towards her dream.
Below is a YouTube video that Lucy created:

Aloha — Cathi

From Lucy Jarrard:
My name is Lucy Matatutia-Jarrard, and I am the first Samoan Female Surfer to represent American Samoa Surfing Association. I’m excited to announce that I will be surfing in an Olympic Qualifier this May. This opportunity would only be possible with support. Your support and donations are giving me the best chance at making American Samoa proud.
With promising results, I will have the opportunity to compete in the Tokyo 2021 Olympics. I seek donations for Travel Expense, Food and Lodging, Training/Coaching, and Surf Equipment.
All donations will strictly be used for surfing purposes. Your support would mean the world to me! Fa’afetai, and Thank you so much for your help!

If you are trying to donate from other countries, please donate by using pay pal. Thank you again.
GoFund Me: gf.me/u/zggjvx
PayPal- PayPal.Me/lucyjarrard
If donating by check, please make it out to: Lucille Jarrard
Surf Video- https://youtu.be/4Tw949tuwjo
Website- https://lucyjarrard.com/

KITV4: Lawmakers push to end ‘recon’ inspections of modified vehicles 2/23/21

[Note: The following article, published by KITV4 on 23 Feb. 2021, is about a bill, SB57, introduced by Senator Shimabukuro, to eliminate the Reconstructed car inspection requirement.]

O’ahu’s “Recon” inspection program could be coming to an end.

State senators are pushing to eliminate the special inspection requirement for modified vehicles.

The State Department of Transportation supports the call and testified that current crash data indicate reconstructed vehicles do not pose a safety problem on Hawaii’s roads.

According to the HDOT, its staff also lack the expertise needed to properly inspect these types of vehicles. The measure would keep the current “street rod” exemption for vehicles older than 1968 which allows those vehicles to undergo a less stringent safety inspection.

SB57 also has support from the Honolulu Police Department.

The bill passed its final Senate committee Tuesday.

It’s a full senate vote away from being sent to the House to be voted on by representatives.

PBS Hawai’i Insights: Hawaiian Home Lands 2/18/21

Senator Maile Shimabukuro and the International Hospitality Center 2/3/21

Senator Maile Shimabukuro shares her legislative focus for 2021, with an emphasis on traffic, education, unemployment benefits, a surfing village, etc.

SA: DOT to install speed tables on Farrington Hwy 2/14/21

Department of Transportation moved by pedestrian deaths to install speed tables on Farrington Highway
By Rosemarie Bernardo, Star-Advertiser, 2/14/21 Updated 11:40 pm


The state Department of Transportation completed installation of two new raised crosswalks, including one at the intersection of Farrington Highway and Laumania Avenue. Photo by Craig T. Kojima / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM

Area lawmakers are applauding the state Department of Transportation for installing two new raised crosswalks on Farrington Highway at the entrance of Nanakuli to increase pedestrian safety.

State Sen. Maile Shimabukuro said the community appreciates the efforts DOT has made to the make the community safer. Shimabukuro’s district includes Kalaeloa, Nanakuli, Waianae and Makaha.

Installation of the raised pedestrian crosswalks on the highway between Piliokahi Avenue and Laumania Avenue was completed Jan. 14. The project cost an estimated $50,000 to $60,000.

The elevated crosswalks — also called speed tables — encourage drivers to slow down when approaching the crosswalk.

In addition to the new crosswalks, the Transportation Department reduced the speed limit in the vicinity of Tracks Beach Park and Haleakala Avenue to 30 mph from 35 mph.

The deaths of three pedestrians on the highway within a six-week period in October and November prompted transportation officials to address the issue. State Highways Deputy Director Ed Sniffen said, “During that time, we decided that we had to act and do something immediately, which is why we installed the raised pedestrian crosswalks.”

Farrington Highway is the main thoroughfare on the Leeward Coast and sole access route to the Waianae community. Shimabukuro noted that any longtime resident in the community knows someone who has had a friend or a family member killed in a car crash on the highway or fatally struck by a vehicle.

State Rep. Stacelynn Eli (D, Kalaeloa-Ko Olina-Maili) said, “Our community is close-knit … everybody knows everyone.”

The raised crosswalks are installed in the area where 22-year-old Kaulana Werner was killed by a hit-and-run driver while crossing the highway a block from his home in April 2016.

Police arrested the driver, Myisha Lee Armitage, about a half-mile from the crash site. Her blood alcohol content was 0.13, well over the legal threshold of 0.08.

A judge sentenced Armitage in 2019 to 10 years in prison for negligent homicide in Werner’s death.

His death sparked his family and other community members to increase awareness of pedestrian safety.

Shimabukuro and Eli said that prior to the installation of the raised crosswalks, some residents were apprehensive and concerned whether the speed tables would exacerbate heavy traffic.

Residents are now pleased the area is much safer. “I applaud DOT for what they’ve done,” Shimabukuro said.

The project in Nanakuli comes after the state installed raised crosswalks on the Pali Highway in Nuuanu. Speeding has long been a problem on the Pali Highway, where pedestrian fatalities have occurred over the years. The raised crosswalks are located at the intersections of Ahipuu Street and Upper Dowsett Avenue.

SA: Amendments give HHL 5 years to determine casino future 2/11/21 & 2/12/21

* * * * * * * Feb. 12 version * * * * * * *

Hawaiian Home Lands Commission might have 5 years to rule on gambling
By Dan Nakaso Today [12 Feb. 2021] Updated 12:11 am

The Hawaiian Home Lands Commission would have until Dec. 31, 2026 — more than five years — to figure out whether gambling is the best way to generate badly needed funds to clear the backlog of more than 28,000 Native Hawaiian Home Lands beneficiaries, under a revised bill scheduled to go back before the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee on Tuesday.

Senate staff Thursday were “furiously” amending Senate Bill 1321 to include amendments suggested by state Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz, according to state Sen. Maile Shimabukuro, chairwoman of the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee, which considered the amendments Thursday.

The revised version of SB 1321 is expected to be posted before the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee takes up the bill again Tuesday.

Last week the House Economic Development Committee deferred the House version, all but killing it in the House.

The amendments by Dela Cruz are intended to address several concerns, including in the House, he told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on Thursday.

Instead of the Legislature deciding whether to lift Hawaii’s prohibition on all forms of legal gambling, the Hawaiian Home Lands Commission would exercise “self-determination” on how to proceed, and give commissioners enough time to deliberate a decision, Dela Cruz said.

They would not be limited on whether to allow a single resort casino, as originally envisioned, and could proceed with any form of gambling, including a casino, lottery, bingo and even horse racing, Dela Cruz said.

In December the Hawaiian Home Lands Commission voted 5-4 to endorse the concept of a resort casino and introduce it before the Legislature.

But the new proposal would require a “supermajority” of Home Lands commissioners — or six votes, compared with a simple majority of five votes, Dela Cruz said.

Shimabukuro said the amended version of SB 1321 also would not provide a “green light” for gambling “across the board” in Hawaii.

And it would specifically prohibit Native American Indian tribes from setting up gambling operations in the islands, Shimabukuro said.

She called Dela Cruz’s amendments “brilliant.”

“What he’s doing is giving the powers to the Hawaiians to decide for themselves,” Shimabukuro said.

Tyler Gomes, deputy to Department of Hawaiian Home Lands Chairman William Aila, told the Hawaiian Affairs Committee that “we appreciate the affirmation of self-determination.”

State Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole, vice chairman of the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee, told the Star- Advertiser that there still has been no identified, alternative source to generate millions of dollars of revenue to significantly reduce the backlog of DHHL beneficiaries.

“What are the actual alternatives?” he said. “If nothing is done differently this year, 13,000 beneficiaries over the age of 65 will only get older, or we would lose them. It’s easy to criticize the department for whatever failure you’d like to criticize them for … but we have 28,000 people on the wait list and everyone in Hawaii knows how expensive a home is.”

Gomes said that giving Home Lands commissioners five years to consider the issue would allow “for the department to do due diligence.”

The original version of SB 1321 was opposed by the Honolulu Prosecutor’s Office and Honolulu Police Department, along with a petition signed by 15,600 people that was organized by Hawaiian Affairs Committee member state Sen. Kurt Fevella, the Senate Republican minority leader and minority floor leader.

Fevella remained opposed to the amended bill, which he told the Star- Advertiser would allow gambling to prey “on the poor working man, the people who are already struggling” who think, “Bring it home for daddy, bring it home for mommy.”

“Gaming, gambling in Hawaii will change us forever,” Fevella said. “People come to Hawaii for our beautiful oceans, our beautiful scenery.”

The Hawaiian Affairs Committee on Thursday also considered two new bills: SB 85, which would allow DHHL to pursue “lottery and bingo enterprises,” and SB 86, which would allow DHHL to “engage in the operation of medical cannabis dispensaries.”

Both bills are expected to return to the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee on Tuesday, Shimabukuro said.

* * * * * * * Feb. 11 version * * * * * * *

Amendments give Hawaiian Home Lands 5 years to determine casino future
By Dan Nakaso, Star-Advertiser, 11 Feb. 2021

The issue of whether to make an exception to Hawaii’s ban on all forms of gambling by allowing a casino near Kapolei to help clear the backlog of more than 28,000 Hawaiian Home Lands beneficiaries appears to be heading back to the Hawaiian Home Lands Commission, which would have five years to figure out if a casino resort is the best way to get Native Hawaiians into homes and onto their ancestral lands.

Proposed amendments to Senate Bill 1321 would kick the issue of Hawaii’s first casino back to the Hawaiian Home Lands Commission, which voted 5 to 4 to endorse the concept in December and introduce it before the Legislature.

The Hawaiian Home Lands commission would have until Dec. 31, 2026 to figure out whether it wants to pursue the resort casino concept, under several amendments to SB1321 proposed by Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz, said state Sen. Maile Shimabukuro, chairwoman of the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee today.

One of Dela Cruz’s amendments would require endorsement of the casino concept by “a super majority” of the Hawaiian Home Lands commission, Shimabukuro said.

At Dela Cruz’ suggestion, Shimabukuro said that the amended SB1321 would not provide a “green light” for gambling, but would be limited to only allow the Home Lands commission to decide how to proceed as part of Native Hawaiian “self determination.”

The proposed amended bill would not allow gaming “across the board” and would specifically prohibit Native American Indian tribes from operating casinos in the islands, Shimabukuro said.

Tyler Gomes, deputy to DHHL Chairman William Aila, told the Hawaiian Affairs Committee that “we appreciate the affirmation of self-determination.”

Gomes said the proposed amendments that would give the commission five years to debate a casino would allow “for the department to do due diligence.”

The original version of SB1321 was opposed by the Honolulu Prosecutor’s office and Honolulu Police Department, along with a petition signed by 15,600 people that was organized by Hawaiian Affairs Committee member Sen. Kurt Fevella, the Senate Republican minority leader and minority floor leader.

The House Economic Development Committee last week deferred the original House version of SB1321, stalling it in the House.

The Hawaiian Affairs Committee today also considered two new bills, SB85 — which would allow DHHL to pursue “lottery and bingo enterprises;” and SB86 — which would allow DHHL to “engage in the operation of medical cannabis dispensaries.”

Both bills are expected to return to the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee at an unspecified date, Shimabukuro said.

KHON2: Lawmakers consider gambling to help Native Hawaiians 2/11/21

Boerger: ‘Hawaii Women’s Legislative Caucus outlines 2021 policy priorities’

Emily Boerger, “Hawaii Women’s Legislative Caucus outlines 2021 policy priorities,” State of Reform, 27 Jan. 2021.

The Hawaii Women’s Legislative Caucus (WLC) will push for bills to improve women’s health, address violence against women, and support women in the workplace during the 2021 legislative session. The caucus reviewed this year’s legislative package at a virtual breakfast meeting on Wednesday.

The bill package include two bills aimed at preventing violence against women. House Bill 563/Senate Bill 826 would prohibit a convicted sex offender from living within 2,000 feet of a former victim or that victim’s immediate family members. It would require the offender to receive approval from the Attorney General prior to a change in address.

Senator Maile Shimabukuro, who introduced the senate version of the bill, says the bill came by request of one of her constituents. This constituent and her family had endured years of abuse from the father of the children in the family. From prison, the father threatened the family, saying upon his release he would kill them.

“She, in desperation, requested that this bill be introduced,” said Shimabukuro.

She says that as of 2018, six other states have passed similar legislation.

“I really hope that Hawaii can be added to this list to provide much needed protection to victims and their families,” she added.

The other bill, HB 566/SB 829, would add coercive control to the offense of abuse of family or household members as a petty misdemeanor.  Continue reading

Kama’āina (Child of the Land): Award-Winning LGBTQ Short Film about Teenage Homelessness

Synopsis: After suffering abuse from her stepfather, a queer sixteen-year-old must navigate life on the streets, until she eventually finds refuge at the Pu’uhonua o Wai’anae––Hawaiʻi’s largest organized homeless encampment.

Kama’āina (Child of the Land)
Directed by Kimi Howl Lee

“With its picturesque beachy landscapes, the Hawaiian archipelago is at the forefront of many minds as a desired location for a dream vacation. However, with one of the highest homeless rates per capita in the US, as well as one of the highest rates of homeless youth, life for the residents of the islands can be quite different from the one that tourists encounter. In Kama’āina (Child of the Land), writer/director Kimi Howl Lee takes us to Wai’anae, a predominantly native corner of the Oahu island, where influencers rarely venture. Following Mahina, a young woman who had to flee her abusive household, Lee’s thought-provoking and insightful 17-minute film offers a sensitive and authentic approach to chronicling the unfortunate reality and resilience of many LGBTQIA teens.

The motivation for Lee’s film comes from a personal place. As a teenager, spending her summer in Oahu, the director had a fling with a local boy that she came to realize was living out of his car. “Having been romantically involved with someone my age – who was ostensibly homeless – remains one of the most profound, thought-provoking experiences of my life.” she tells us while dwelling on the inspiration behind her film.

Being confronted by this hidden side of the island led her on a journey of self-reflection, sparking a will to shed light on the harsh poverty and homeless crisis, that eventually materialized into the story for Kama’āina. By centering the story around a teenager, the narrative is deepened with a coming-of-age layer. Allowing the situation to be explored with both innocence and understanding, while giving depth to Mahina, the main character, and increasing the audience’s emotional engagement.

Despite how tragic and traumatic the life experience of some of these kids can be, Lee does not use it to serve her narrative by fetishizing poverty. Instead, opting for a realistic process, she cast mostly homeless, first-time actors, including the outstanding and magnetic lead Malia Kamalani – whose life story is the basis for Kamaʻāina. Having permission to shoot in the community adds an extra, essential layer of authenticity to the film and ultimately draws the audience further into her emotive narrative.

Re-enacting her own experiences (to some extent), Malia Kamalani feels like a natural in front of the camera. Portraying a complex, compelling character with a strong personality, she plays the role with perfect subtlety, never pushing for an overly dramatic reaction. Lee captures slight but defining moments from her day to build her character, which Kamalani then injects with a rare sensibility.

The emotional release at the end Kamaʻāina came as somewhat of a surprise, as Lee doesn’t push forcefully on the emotional trigger throughout the film. Cleverly using the contrast between the location and the trauma her character has endured to highlight the unjust situation (both in the film and in real-life), it was the emotional climax of her facing the water, that had me turn on the waterworks.

Kamaʻāina was an official selection at Outfest Fusion and won Best LGBTQ+ Short at the Palm Springs ShortFest ahead of its online release under the Nowness flagship. Kimi Howl Lee was selected for Film Independent’s 2019 Episodic Lab, she is currently a story editor on Netflix’s Locke & Key and was recently staffed on Amazon’s upcoming and (very much) awaited The Expatriates.’ – S/W Curator, Céline Roustan

Cast & Crew:

Malia Kamalani Soon – Mahina
Aria Alexander – Cashier
Twinkle Borge – Twinkle
Nainoa Brown-Kahananui – Nainoa
Sabina Friedman-Seitz – Shayla
Alex Suvusa – Alex

Scott Ray – Cinematographer
Evita Yup Zhoe – Editor
Austin Lau – Gaffer
Elliana Moore – 1s AC
Aubrey Woodiwiss – Colorist
Briana Brackett – Assistant Colorist
Colin Lee – Location Manager
Michael Alemania – Composer
Miya Colleen Lee – 1st AD
Kiki Matsu – Prop Master
Nick Hallbisback – Sound Recordist
Aidan Reynolds – Sound Mixer
Alex Vazelakis – Music Supervisor
Keila Roberts – Graphic Designer

Special Thanks:
Justyn Ah Chong
Mac Arvee Lopez Blue
Walea L. Constantinau
Richard Hamasaki
Jennifer Dang
Annie Li
Adam Luafalemana-Fuiava
Queenie Marcello-Filo
James Pakele
Loretta Soon
Sight and Sound Studios
Erin Uchida
City and Country of Honolulu

Music in this video
Learn more
Song: Lost My Mind
Artist: Lil Wop
Album: Wopavelli 2
Licensed to YouTube by: EMPIRE, Create Music Group, Inc. (on behalf of Bases Loaded Records); LatinAutorPerf, Abramus Digital, BMI – Broadcast Music Inc., Create Music Publishing, LatinAutor, and 3 Music Rights Societies
Song: Phenomenon
Artist: Odie
Album: Analogue
Licensed to YouTube by: EMPIRE (on behalf of Unité Recordings / EMPIRE); ASCAP, Sony ATV Publishing, and 6 Music Rights Societies

SA: Raised Crosswalks on Farrington Hwy in Nanakuli

Raised crosswalks to be installed on Farrington Highway in Nanakuli, speed limit reduced to 30 mph
By Star-Advertiser Staff, 7 Jan. 2021

A raised crosswalk on Kalihi Street. Photo courtesy of State Dept. of Transportation

State transportation officials said today that two new, raised pedestrian crossings — also known as speed tables — will be installed on Farrington Highway in Nanakuli in response to two recent, deadly collisions there.

The raised pedestrian crossings, which are intended to make pedestrians more visible and slow drivers down, will be installed at the T-intersection before Piliokahi Avenue and at the highway’s intersection with Laumania Avenue.

Work will begin nightly between 9 p.m. and 4 a.m. this Monday, and continue through Thursday of next week.

Lanes on the highway will be closed in each direction between Piliokahi Avenue and Laumania Avenue to allow for the installation of the raised crosswalk across the roadway. One lane in each direction will remain open at all times.

Both raised crosswalks are expected to be completed by Friday morning, weather permitting.

Additional closures will be needed for permanent striping of the crosswalks, which must be done afterwards so paint will adhere properly to new asphalt.

The raised crosswalks to promote pedestrian safety by improving the visibility of pedestrians and providing drivers a physical reminder to reduce their speeds as they enter a residential area, according to the Hawaii Department of Transportation.

Officials said at the same time, the speed limit on Farrington Highway between the vicinity of Tracks Beach Park after the Kahe Power Station and Haleakala Avenue will be reduced from 35 mph to 30 mph, while advisory speeds over the raised crosswalks will be 25 mph.

The state previously installed raised crosswalks on Farrington Highway at Ala Walua Street, the Waianae High School exit, Alawa Place, and Maiuu Road, as well as on Pali Highway in the Nuuanu area.

HDOT will collect speed data at the sites to determine how effective the speed tables are at slowing drivers in the area.

Additional information:
HNN: Ben Gutierrez, “New raised crosswalk slows down traffic in Kalihi and more are on the way,” 21 May 2020.

Kana Walsh: High Schooler Works Toward Changing the World

By Leslie Cranford (“TTU K-12 High Schooler Works Toward Changing the World, Part 2 of 2,” Texas Tech U Newsletter, 11 Nov. 2020).

In the September issue of “Wherever You Are” TTU K‑12 introduced you to Kana Walsh. Here’s the rest of her story, but we’re certain she’ll be doing and creating more exciting things in the future!

Kana Walsh spends much of her time involved in projects to make the world a better place. One of them is advocating for the Day of the Girl, recognized globally each year on Oct. 11. The other is taking part in Model United Nations competitions in the U.S. and in Geneva, Switzerland.

Kana is an American Red Cross National Outreach Coordinator.

Without a flexible school situation, Kana says she would not have the free time to pursue endeavors that are important to her.  Continue reading

Library of Congress 2021 Junior Fellows Summer Internship – Deadline 11/30/20

Nov. 17, 2020

Press contact: Deanna McCray-James (202) 707-9322, demc@loc.gov
Public contact: Junior Fellows Summer Internship Program, juniorfellows@loc.gov

Library Seeks Applicants for the 2021 Junior Fellows Summer Internship Program

The Library of Congress is seeking applicants for its next Junior Fellows Summer Internship Program, which will run from May 24 – July 30, 2021. This 10-week paid internship is open to undergraduate and graduate students interested in learning and conducting research at the largest library in the world. For the second year in a row, the internship will be conducted virtually.

The deadline to apply is Monday, November 30, 2020. Students can learn more information or apply to the program by visiting loc.gov/item/internships/junior-fellows-program/Continue reading

Season’s Greetings from Maile & Keani

Season’s Greetings from Maile, Keani, and ‘ohana. Photo courtesy of Westside Stories. Click image to enlarge.

Keala Nunuha Named a Complex Area Teacher of the Year 2021

Keala Nunuha, Nānāikapono Elementary, Nānākuli-Waiʻanae Complex Hawaii DOE 2021 State Teacher of the Year

Keala Nunuha: “I want to impact students the same way my elementary teachers impacted me. There is no greater way to show my gratitude for them and their work but to show how much I am #PublicSchoolProud by continuing to educate the children of Nanaikapono Elementary School.”

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) will celebrate its 15 Complex Area Teachers of the Year and the Charter School Teacher of the Year in a virtual ceremony Friday. During the event, one outstanding educator will be named HIDOE’s 2021 Hawaii State Teacher of the Year and will go on to represent Hawai‘i in the National Teacher of the Year Program. The winner will also receive awards by Servco Pacific and Hawaiian Electric Co.

What: 2021 State Teacher of the Year Virtual Award Ceremony
Where: Hawaii State Department of Education Facebook Live
When: Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, at 3 p.m

SA: ‘Affordable rentals for Hawaiians to rise in Moiliili’

By Andrew Gomes, 10/5/20

A 23-story apartment tower is slated to rise on the former Stadium Bowl-O-Drome site in Moiliili, providing affordable rentals for 277 Native Hawaiian households.

The plan was recently selected by the state Department of Hawaiian Homes Lands, which owns the 1.9-acre site at 820 Isenberg St. and last year solicited proposals from private developers to produce what would be the agency’s first high-rise rental housing project serving beneficiaries.

DHHL determined that a partnership between local homebuilder Stanford Carr Development and contractor Hawaiian Dredging Construction Co. offered the best plan over four other competing proposals.  Continue reading

Rent Assistance for Those at Risk of Eviction

Rent Relief & Housing Assistance Program

Are you a renter experiencing a reduction of income and now facing eviction as a result of COVID-19? This program may be for you. For eligible renters:

Monthly rent payments of up to $2,000 per household residing in the City and County of Honolulu, or $1,500 per household residing in the Counties of Hawaii, Maui or Kauai.

Any applicable financial counseling and assistance with rent payment plans or rent negotiation.

Applications for assistance are currently being accepted for rent payments due between August 1 and December 28, 2020.

The Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program will end on December 28, 2020.

Residents in HPHA public housing or Section 8 program are not eligible.

Purpose: The purpose of the State of Hawaii’s Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program is to provide assistance to renters who have experienced or are facing a reduction in income because of the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and are at risk of eviction. The program provides renters with monthly rent, as well as financial counseling. Funded by a portion of the Federal CARES Act, the program is administered by nonprofit partners Catholic Charities Hawaii and Aloha United Way.


RRHAP FAQs 9.8.20 KM – HHFDC Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program FAQs (as of September 4, 2020)

RRHAP news release 9.8.20 KM – Governor Ige Announces Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program

HHFDCflyer-r11 – Has Your Income Been Impacted by COVID-19? You May Be Eligible for Rent Relief

HHFDC_Support Letter Template 9.5.20KM – [MS Word Document] HHFDC Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program Support Letter Template to get the word out (as of September 4, 2020)

Program Overview 9.8.20 KM – Rent Relief and Housing Assistance Program: Overview