UH News: ‘Native Hawaiian and African American smokers have high risk of lung cancer’ (2/6/19)

by Nana Ohkawa
University of Hawaiʻi News
6 Feb. 2019

University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center studies show Native Hawaiian and African American smokers have a higher risk of acquiring lung cancer than smokers of other ethnic/racial groups.

The study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that for the same amount of smoking, Native Hawaiians and African Americans have twice the risk of getting lung cancer than Japanese Americans and Latinos, with the risk of Caucasian smokers being intermediate. This new analysis of almost 5,000 cases in the Multi-ethnic Cohort Study shows major differences in the risk of lung cancer among smokers from various ethnic/racial groups.

The findings also suggest that the higher risk of lung cancer for African American smokers and lower risk for Japanese American smokers are due to differences in smoking intensity (the amount of nicotine and tobacco carcinogens inhaled from each cigarette). However, the increased risk for Native Hawaiian smokers remains unexplained.

“It is still not clear why these striking ethnic disparities exist in the risk of lung cancer,” said Loïc Le Marchand, principal investigator and UH Cancer Center epidemiologist. “By better understanding differences in the way people smoke and the biological changes that lead to lung cancer, we hope to help reduce ethnic/racial disparities in the occurrence of this deadly disease.”

Native Hawaiians have the highest rate of lung cancer in Hawaiʻi

In Hawaiʻi, Native Hawaiians have the highest rate of lung cancer compared to other ethnic groups. In 2016, Hawaiʻi State Department of Health statistics reported an overall smoking rate in Hawaiʻi of 14 percent; however, 27 percent of Native Hawaiians were smokers.

“Native Hawaiians should particularly be advised to not start smoking or to quit if they are still smoking. We know that smoking is a major cause of lung cancer in all populations and that avoiding smoking lowers one’s risk of lung cancer substantially. Smoking causes 90 percent of all lung cancers and increases the risk of many other types of cancer and chronic conditions,” said Le Marchand.

In order to understand the ethnic/racial disparities linked to lung cancer, UH Cancer Center researchers have initiated a new study and seek to recruit 300 volunteers of Japanese, Caucasian or Hawaiian ancestry who are current cigarette smokers. The objectives are to identify biomarkers in blood and urine that are associated with lung cancer risk and to improve understanding of the mechanisms underlying the risk.

HPR: ‘Legislature Seeks to Reform OHA Elections’

By Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi, HPR Reporter
Hawaii Public Radio, 2/6/19

State lawmakers are seeking to change the way Hawaiʻi votes for trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. HPR Reporter Kuʻuwehi Hiraishi has more.

[Listen to the 2:34 voice recording at HPR]

Hawaiʻi state legislators have taken the first step toward overhauling the elections process for Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustees. The Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee started with campaign funding and the way candidatesʻ names are listed on the ballots.

“Right now, all OHA candidates can get is $1,500 in public funding for a statewide race, which you know candidates have felt is very unfair,” says Waiʻanae Senator Maile Shimabukuro, who chairs the committee. “When you look at the Lieutenant Governor who gets, I think it’s like $100,000 each race, it’s a dramatic difference.”

Senate Bill 728 seeks to increase the amount of public funding available to OHA candidates. It’s a measure supported by current OHA Trustee Keliʻi Akina.

“Each trustee, unlike a legislator, actually has to campaign on each and every island,” says Akina, “Therefore it would only be fair that they are able to raise an amount of money that allows them to do that.”

The bill passed out of committee with amendments that increase the amount to $42,000 per election year but only after candidates raise a minimum of $5,000.

Another bill proposed to place the names on a ballot in a random order, rather than alphabetical order. Something OHA beneficiary Kauʻi Pratt-Aquino hopes will allow candidates to move beyond name recognition.

“Itʻs no secret that a candidate with their last name starting with the letter A has an advantage over every other candidate in the race. And that has not have to do with merit at all,” says Pratt-Aquino, “What these bills try to do is put candidates on equal footing.”

Former OHA candidate Sam Wilder King II sees it as an opportunity to combat low voter participation in OHA races.

“The point is that when you randomize it there’s going to be a bunch of people who are still going to vote for the first name on the ballot even if it starts with Z,” says King, “They’re still gonna vote for the first name on the ballot. It’s just that now everybody will get the same number of apathy votes and then the actual active votes will decide the election.”

That issue is covered by Senate Bill 729 – which passed out of committee as is. Shimabukuro says it has a good chance of becoming law because it doesnʻt require any funding to implement. Former OHA candidate Esther Kiaʻāina testified in support of the legislature’s efforts.

“All of these tools cumulatively would be helpful in just providing, one, equity for candidates that run for OHA and better vetting for the electorate,” says Kiaʻāina.

Two bills calling for trustee term limits were deferred by the committee. Shimabukuro called the measure “controversial” but worthy of discussion.

SA: ‘Ancient Hawaiian site in Kalaeloa threatened’

By Andrew Gomes January 30, 2019 Updated January 29, 2019 10:20pm


The future of Kalaeloa Heritage Park remains uncertain. In early January, the Hawaii Community Development Authority board voted unanimously to proceed with terminating a 40-year lease with the park’s curator, the Kalaeloa Heritage and Legacy Foundation. Video by Andrew Gomes / agomes@staradvertiser.com

STAR-ADVERTISER / 2016. The Kalaeloa Heritage Park is home to several cultural structures, remnants of an ancient Hawaiian village including sinkholes that were once filled with drinkable water, and a restored Hawaiian trail. Thomas Cleek walks past a sinkhole that was once filled with drinkable water.

ANDREW GOMES / AGOMES@STARADVERTISER.COM. Dwight Victor, board president of the Kalaeloa Heritage and Legacy Foundation, stands in front of construction debris at Kalaeloa Heritage Park.

On Oahu’s arid Ewa plain, amid a kiawe tree forest, remnants of an ancient Hawaiian settlement are a cultural treasure anchoring a heritage park. Yet something is marring the land and perhaps the park’s future.

Hazardous rubble.

An estimated 2,259 cubic yards of construction debris including dirt, concrete, iron bars, car parts and asbestos pipe — enough to fill about 100 to 150 dump trucks — was illegally deposited on the property soon after Kalaeloa Heritage Park opened eight years ago.

Now, after roughly five years of unfruitful efforts to clean up the mess, the problem has put the park’s nonprofit steward at a contentious crossroads with a state agency that owns the land.

On Jan. 9 the Hawaii Community Development Authority board voted unanimously to proceed with terminating a 40-year lease with the park’s curator, the Kalaeloa Heritage and Legacy Foundation, after the organization was unwilling to surrender its lease in place of a short-term stewardship agreement and the state covered fines and remediation work possibly costing more than $600,000.

Foundation officials said they have invested so much work in the park that they don’t want to be cut out of its future.

“We’re dismayed,” said Dwight Victor, foundation board president. “It is disheartening that (HCDA) would plan to go this route.”

The discord threatens to undo a partnership between community volunteers and the state that created a place where the public can see how Native Hawaiians lived in the area 400 years ago.

The cultural site and surrounding area are believed to have been first settled sometime after the mid-1600s and abandoned shortly before or after Western contact about 100 years later. Oddly, artifacts of this settlement survived because the site was part of a military base for much of the 20th century.

Extraordinary archaeological features include a paved trail marked by upright stones suggesting Tahitian influence; remnants of a coral habitation structure; sinkholes that served as water sources; burial places; agricultural planters; and a heiau, or place of worship.

Some 51 cultural features identified on the 77-acre site avoided destruction by modern development and agriculture because they were in a buffer zone on the 3,700-acre Barbers Point Naval Air Station.

As the military base was closing in 1999, the Hawaiian civic club ‘Ahahui Siwila Hawai‘i o Kapolei worked with federal and state officials to preserve the cultural sites on land the Navy later gave to HCDA.

Civic club members created the foundation in 2011, and under a preliminary access agreement with HCDA, the all-volunteer organization established an initial phase of the park after clearing 4 acres to reveal several artifacts showcased through interpretive tours.

More than 12,000 hours of work by foundation volunteers helped establish the park. That work included re-creating a home, or kauhale, from coral, wood and grass. HCDA helped finance an environmental assessment and other planning work.

About 1,000 people visited the park in each of the last two years, but the foundation has big expansion goals in a 10-year plan that includes building a cultural center projected to attract 62,360 visitors annually. The stockpiled material is not in the area toured by visitors.

Center elements include car and bus parking, a ticketing area, a stage for cultural demonstrations and entertainment, a theater, an art gallery, a kitchen and dining area, meeting and workshop rooms, office space, rest­rooms and a gift shop. A greenhouse, farmers market, maintenance yard and caretaker’s cottage are also part of the $9.5 million conceptual plan.

Problems pile up

During work in 2012 to grade an area slated for the visitors center, the foundation bulldozed some military infrastructure on the property and received donated material from a construction site.

The foundation neglected to get a stockpiling permit, and in late 2013 the city Department of Planning and Permitting cited HCDA as the landowner and soon began assessing $750 daily fines.

Victor said soil testing was done, but a permit wasn’t sought because volunteers weren’t familiar with such a requirement.

Foundation officials committed to curing the stockpile violation, but efforts were beset with engineering requirements, a State Historic Preservation Division review and other requirements.

The state Department of Health followed up with a warning letter in mid-2014 describing the material as an illegal dump and ordered all solid waste be removed from the stockpile.

In mid-2015 the foundation got a city stockpiling permit, which stopped the accrual of fines at $363,000.

At the end of 2015, HCDA signed a 40-year lease with the foundation while holding a right to terminate the lease if the stockpiling violation wasn’t resolved within a year.

The foundation presented HCDA with a report detailing best options in mid-2017. The preferred option was to remove solid waste and donate soil to an interested developer at a projected cost of $103,150 to $210,300.

Because the foundation lacked money, HCDA’s board in late 2017 approved spending up to $200,000 and began the work in March. But right off the bat a contractor uncovered an asbestos pipe that hadn’t been revealed in the soil test, and work stopped. HCDA then had to come up with a hazardous-materials assessment and treatment plan, and the agency’s board voted in August to spend up to $100,000 to address the issue.

Finding a resolution

The foundation told HCDA that it planned to hold a fundraiser and request a grant from the Legislature to help pay for stockpile fees and fines. Instead, HCDA in October offered to pay for site remediation work and the city fine as part of terminating the lease and providing the foundation with a stewardship agreement. Part of the consideration for this move appeared to include questions over other foundation actions, including letting a trucking company store heavy equipment on the site without HCDA permission and intending to sublease part of the park site to a charter school.

The agency explained its move in a Oct. 19 letter telling the foundation that a one-year stewardship agreement could be followed by two more years. The letter also said that if the foundation submitted a sound business plan showing an ability to carry out the park expansion plan, HCDA might reconsider a new long-term lease.

“In short, HCDA staff is proposing that we hit the ‘reset’ button, allowing (the foundation) to continue to provide stewardship for the (park), while relieving the heavy financial burden of having to pay for the cost of remediation for the stockpile,” the letter said.

Victor, in a Oct. 27 letter to HCDA, said the foundation couldn’t respond to the offer because it wanted to seek professional advice and consult with state Sen. Mike Gabbard, state Rep. Sharon Har and City Councilwoman Kymberly Pine. Victor also said the stewardship deal lacked substantive detail, such as whether tours would still be allowed.

An HCDA contractor began the hazardous-materials assessment work last month, and the agency’s board voted Jan. 9 to move ahead with terminating the foundation’s lease, which could be done by the agency’s executive director. Foundation officials hope HCDA reconsiders, and were informed Thursday by the agency that they have 15 days to demonstrate diligent efforts to resolve the violations.

“We want to keep this lease,” said Shad Kane, a longtime park caretaker and former foundation board member. “We’re just afraid it’ll go off in another direction rather than what (it) is meant to be.”

SA ‘Students plant future, restore past at Ka‘ala Farm in Waianae’ 1/20/19

By Mindy Pennybacker
January 20, 2019 Updated January 20, 2019 6:47am
Star-Advertiser link

Students from Nanakuli High School work in kalo fields, cook with ulu and perform other hands-on learning tasks at Ka’ala Farm in Waianae Valley under the supervision of Eric Enos, executive director of the nonprofit Ka’ala Farm. Star-Advertiser video by Dennis Oda / doda@staradvertiser.com

It was a clear, cool, blue-sky morning of breathtaking beauty at Ka‘ala Farm and Cultural Learning Center, a green, 97-acre oasis at the top of dry Waianae Valley, where streams were diverted in the 19th century to irrigate plantations of sugar cane. Starting in 1978, under the leadership of the nonprofit’s executive director, Eric Enos, some of the water flow has been redirected back to Ka‘ala Valley, where ancient kalo loi and auwai (terraced fields and irrigation ditches for growing taro) are being restored and cultivated in the traditional Hawaiian way.

Nanakuli High students work on Ka‘ala Farm as part of a Department of Education program A‘ali‘i, which lets them earn enough credits to graduate. “The kids struggle with attendance, behavioral issues or just their family life,” said teacher Jewelynn Kirkland. Above, students had come in from planting kalo in November. Before eating, everyone joined hands and said a pule.

“Where we are (the farm, as well as an adjacent 1,100 acres of former Ka‘ala Ranch, both leased by the nonprofit from the state) is the best preserved agricultural village system, with three major heiau and the loi still intact, because it was never bulldozed for sugar — too rocky,” Enos said as he and Jewelynn Kirkland, a teacher at Nanakuli High & Intermediate School, supervised 13 students planting dryland kalo. Against the backdrop of the stark cliffs of the Waianae Range and the sea shining far below at the valley mouth, it could have been a scene from ancient Hawaii, except for the young peoples’ T-shirts, slippers, jeans and shorts.   Continue reading

‘Sea Level Rise & Climate Change’ Dec. 2018

Click image to access the full 61-page report.

DPP Releases Key Background Report on Sea Level Rise and Climate Change (PUC DP Update)

From: City and County of Honolulu Department of Planning and Permitting
Date: 16 Jan. 2019

PUC Development Plan Update #5

Spotlight on the Project Background Reports

Hau‘oli Makahiki Hou! As the Primary Urban Center Development Plan update process continues, background papers on broad planning and policy issues affecting the PUC have been prepared. The goal of these papers is to provide updated research since the existing plan’s adoption in 2004, and to explore new trends, changing conditions, and future considerations. There are seven such reports prepared for the PUC DP – the newest addition is a Sea Level Rise and Climate Change paper prepared by UH Sea Grant that represents a new topic of focus to be included in the updated Development Plan. The PUC DP project team is pleased to share this paper with you as it reflects current climate science and projected conditions, as well as discussion, case studies, and potential policy tools as part of the larger conversation on the path forward.

Other background papers available on the project website include: Housing Trends, Economic Development, Natural Resources & Public Open Space, and Infrastructure Trends. Coming soon: Public Health, and Land Use & Urban Form.

Mahalo, and please share with others who may be interested!

Reminder: We are still soliciting public feedback on the draft Guiding Principles for the PUC DP. These were initially presented at the Vision Forum held in November 2017. Please click the link below to take a brief survey to give us feedback on each of the proposed Guiding Principles, and to let us know whether we’ve missed anything. We will be closing this survey at the end of January.

View details and materials from past project engagement activities or other PUC DP documents such as the Neighborhood Fact Sheets.

The Primary Urban Center stretches from Wai‘alae-Kāhala to Pearl City. The PUC DP contains policies relating to growth and development that implement the vision of the General Plan. To find out more about the project and how to get involved, please visit the project website at www.pucdp.com. The website will be updated regularly with background information, upcoming events, interactive questionnaires, and reports prepared for the project.



>>>Did you know you can avoid going in person to the DMV Office for certain things?<<<

Also~Reminder: Wai’anae DMV Office will be Open Saturdays from 8-noon Now Through August 25, 2018. Read below for more info!



You may Renew your license within 6 months of the expiration date. To do so by mail, Send a Letter Requesting to Renew your Hawaiʻi Driver License.

Include Your Name, Social Security Number or Hawaiʻi Driver License Number, Date of Birth, Email address (optional) and Signature.

Mail Request to: Driver License Section, P.O. Box 30340, Honolulu, Hawaiʻi 96820-0340 or fax to 808-768-9096

When we receive your request, we will mail a renewal packet to you. You must complete these forms (included in the packet) and send back with payment:

Medical Report Form – examination must be completed and signed by a licensed physician (MD or DO) within 6 months.

Certificate of Eye Examination – examination must be completed and signed by a licensed physician within 6 months.

Statement of Driver License Possession – must be completed and notarized.

If not previously submitted on or after May 1, 2014, documentary proof of legal name, date of birth, legal presence, social security number and two forms of proof of principal residence. Acceptable documents may be found at: http://www.honolulu.gov/rep/site/csd/onlineforms/csldl248.pdf

Full instructions will be included in the Renewal packet. If there is no compliance requirement pending in any jurisdiction (including this state) that prevents you from getting a license, we will mail you a valid-without-photo license. If your image is found in our driver database, both the photo and the signature will be utilized.



For an exact replacement of a driver license or learner’s (instruction) permit, visit here: https://www1.honolulu.gov/duplicates/ or license.honolulu.gov. Duplicate will be mailed to you, Or you may pick up on the same day by visiting any Driver License Office to apply for the duplicate. The fee for a duplicate is $6.00.

(Note: If your address has changed then you need to apply for duplicates by mail along with proof of your new address – see below)

By Mail

Send Letter Requesting for a Duplicate of your Hawaiʻi Driver License

Include Your Name, Social Security Number or Hawaiʻi Driver License Number, Date of Birth, Email address (optional), reason for the request, Signature and the fee of $6.00 (certified check or money order payable to City & County of Honolulu).

Mail Request to: Driver License Section, P.O. Box 30340, Honolulu, HI 96820-0340, or fax to 808-768-9096

If your image is found in our driver database, both the photo and the signature will be utilized. If your address has changed, include proof of residence; click here for more info:



Use this link to make an appointment for DMV/ID matters: https://alohaq.honolulu.gov


Renewal by mail requests are limited to applicants who are 80 years of age or older. If an applicant is eighty years of age or older, the renewal may be accomplished by mail, provided that you are not temporarily authorized to be in the U.S. and you had been processed as an in person initial issuance or renewal after January 1, 2013 and had submitted documentary proof of legal name, date of birth, social security number, legal presence and principal residence address.

The following link provides information regarding a listing of acceptable documents for proof of legal name, date of birth, social security number, legal presence and principal residence address: http://www.honolulu.gov/cms-csd-menu/site-csd-sitearticles/6439-state-id-info-and-requirements.html

Obtain an application form at a driver’s license office or complete and print the fillable form online located at: http://www.honolulu.gov/rep/site/csd/onlineforms/csd-stateidapplicationform.pdf

If you are 80 years of age or older and you are qualified to renew by mail, you may mail your application form, payment and documents, if required, to Driver License Section, P.O. Box 30340, Honolulu, HI 96820-0340. We will mail your state identification card and both the file photo and the signature will be utilized on the card. The second renewal by mail will require the applicant to submit updated photo and fingerprints. You may obtain a fingerprint and photo packet from the Kapalama Hale Driver Licensing Center.


The Wai‘anae Driver Licensing Center will begin offering temporary Saturday hours, starting Saturday, July 28 and ending August 25, 8am-noon.

In the FY18 Budget, the City Council approved the funding of permanent Saturday openings. This pilot project is a step forward towards making Saturday service at Wai‘anae permanent, in line with Council’s budget approval. (Operating Budget Bill 4 authorized 4 permanent positions to increase hours at Wai‘anae Satellite City Hall.)

[Councilwoman Pine and her staff] look forward to continue working with the Administration as we begin this new service, and we also seek feedback from the community. Mahalo Senator Maile S.L. Shimabukuro and Rep. Cedric Asuega Gates for your efforts in getting volunteer support!

Location: Waianae Satellite City Hall 85-670 Farrington Hwy. Waianae, Hawaii 96792.

Phone: (808)768-4900

[Source: Councilwoman Pine; See Mayor’s press release in photos below for more details]

Karen Young and WOW! Recognized by HNN 080218

Video: Ian Scheuring, “They sold chili, soap and plants. All to help non-traditional students get to college,” Hawaii News Now, 8/2/18.


They sold chili, soap and plants. All to help non-traditional students get to college
Jim Mendoza
Hawaii News Now, 2 Aug. 2018, 05:29 PM

WAIANAE, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) – The rolled up banner behind Karen Young’s couch comes out whenever the Women of Waianae hold a yard sale.

Over the years, the small non-profit has done all kinds of fundraising.

“We did chili sales. We sold soap. We sold plants,” Young said.

She and a handful of friends started Women of Waianae years ago to raise money to help older people in Waianae go to college.

“We could see that there was poverty and lack of access to good education. Much of it was money, the barrier of not having enough money to go to school,” she said.

In 1990, they presented their first scholarship award to Staci Cheek, a young mom trying to make ends meet.

She dreamed of becoming a nurse.

“It just got me started on a whole new journey. Education just seemed so far away.” she said.

The award was only a few hundred dollars but it helped her with her first year’s tuition. She got other scholarships and eventually graduated with a nursing degree.

Young estimates Women of Waianae has helped about 200 Waianae residents go to college.

She calls them non-traditional students.

“These are people who have children, who missed the first opportunity to go to college because they had other obligations or they weren’t ready or they didn’t have money,” she said.

The non-profit takes applications and awards scholarships based on the person’s need and how determined they are to better their lives.

There are now about 20 women in the non-profit. This year they awarded $26,000 in scholarships to 15 recipients.

“We love our community. We want to help the people who are from here to be able to stay here, to live here, to flourish here,” Young said.

Fundraising is now more sophisticated.

Women of Waianae also gets donations and grants to help people get the education they want but can’t afford.

Copyright 2018 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

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