Tomorrow is the official start of the 2011 Hurricane Season, which runs from June 1 to November 30. This is a good time to go through your emergency kit and rotate out canned foods and other items that may be close to the expiration date.
To help residents prepare for hurricane season, the 5th Annual Maui County Hurricane Expo will be held on June 4th at the Queen Kaahumanu Center in Kahului. Stop by to see old acquaintances and meet new preparedness volunteers this Saturday.
If you cannot attend in person, below are a few resources to help you get prepared.
• Social media tools offered by FEMA and NOAA.
• FEMA lists preparation tips for folks with special health needs and children.
• The Maui County and Hawaii State Civil Defense websites offer information about evacuating, shelters and preparedness.
• The MauiReady site provides additional information on emergency preparedness.
As the mantra of our good friends at Ready.gov says, Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed.
Good luck to all with your preparedness planning.
WAILUKU, Maui, Hawaii – The County of Maui’s Department of Environmental Management, Solid Waste Division announced they missed a route in the Kula service area due to a staff shortage. We apologize for the inconvenience and anticipate picking-up the route tomorrow, Wednesday, June 1, 2011.
AREAS AFFECTED: KULA KAI SUBDIVISION
LOWER AND UPPER KIMO DR
LOWER KULA RD
AND ALL SURROUNDING STREETS
TOKYO >> U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye said Tuesday he expects the fate of a contentious American Marine base in southern Japan will be decided next month.
U.S. and Japanese foreign and defense ministers are to meet in late June to decide what to do with the Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, which is supposed to be moved to a less populated part of Okinawa under a 2006 agreement. Local residents, however, say it should be moved off the island.
Inouye, who is chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, downplayed a letter written by three colleagues earlier this month that called for a reevaluation.
Senators John McCain, Carl Levin and Jim Webb said the Defense Department should rethink its overall plan to restructure American forces in East Asia, calling it “unrealistic, unworkable, and unaffordable.”
The senators said the agreement, aimed at decreasing America’s military footprint in Japan, imposes an enormous financial burden on Tokyo as it recovers from a major earthquake. They offered alternatives they said would save billions of dollars but still keep U.S. military forces in the region.
Inouye said the letter expressed concern about Japan’s ability to “bear their load” amid the disaster.
“We have been assured by the Japanese government that yes they can,” Inouye told reporters in Tokyo. “I think both governments agree that American presence is necessary and desired.”
He said U.S. forces are critical for balancing a rising China, which is bolstering its military might. If Americans left, Japan would have to increase its military strength, he said.
“One can be assured that if this ever happens, nations in the neighborhood will do the same,” he said. “And if there’s an arms race in this area, you can almost conclude, because history has given us this lesson many times over, there will be bloodshed.”
Okinawans have long complained about pollution, noise, crime and other problems associated with U.S. military bases on the island, which hosts more than half the 47,000 U.S. troops in Japan. The previous prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama, was forced to resign last year after promising and failing to get the Marine base off the island altogether.
Under the 2006 agreement, the Futenma base, located in a heavily populated southern part of Okinawa, would be closed and its air operations relocated to Camp Schwab in the north, where a new airfield would be built. Some 8,000 Marines would also be shifted to the U.S. territory of Guam by 2014. Japan would foot much of the multibillion-dollar relocation bill.
Inouye said the plan emerged from “much deliberation and concern.” He said he’s hopeful the ministers can resolve the outstanding issues at the upcoming meeting.
Inouye, 86, is the longest-serving member of the Senate. Born in Hawaii, he is a second-generation Japanese-American who fought in the famed 442nd Regimental Combat Team during World War II. He has dedicated much of his political life to fostering U.S.-Japan ties.
He is visiting Japan this week to meet leaders and tour the disaster-hit northeast coast.
(Report Provided by The Associated Press)
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is awarding $4.3 million to 12 organizations tasked with improving education, health and income of Native Hawaiians.
OHA estimated that 13,000 Native Hawaiians will directly benefit from the programs. Each organization will receive between $150,000 and $725,000 over the next two years.
The funding will go toward programs helping troubled teams, increasing access to early childhood education and providing financial advice on money management, wealth building and credit counseling.
Organizations receiving funding are Hawaii First Federal Credit Union, Aha Punana Leo, Partners in Development Foundation, Waianae Coast Community Mental Health Center Inc., Mana Maoli, Koa Ike, Hawaiian Community Assets, Pacific American Foundation, Maui Economic Opportunity Inc., Hui Malama I Ke Kai Foundation, Family Nurturing Center of Hawaii Inc. and Hale Kipa Inc.
KULA, HI – Surfing Goat Dairy will hold a ground breaking ceremony for their new solar system on June 8, 2011 at 11am.
Surfing Goat Dairy was awarded the Renewable Energy for America Grant by the USDA in November 2011. The grant is intended to enhance business, create jobs, and reduce energy use in rural communities. This was the only grant awarded to an agricultural company. The 43 kilowatt photovoltaic system will be an investment of over $300,000, but is expected to save over $16,100 in annual electric costs.
After working with Haleakala Solar, a local Maui company, for months to design the perfect system that would allow us to utilize our great location for the best use of the sun.
Speakers at the ceremony will include Dairy owner Thomas Kafsack, Congresswoman Mazie Hirano, Govenor Neil Abercromie (or his representative), Mayor Alan Arakawa, and Ed Reinhart of Maui Electric Company. Kahu Alalani Hill will do a blessing before the ground breaking ceremony begins.
The ceremony will be followed by a gourmet lunch, with the best of Surfing Goat Dairy’s products.
This morning at 9:30 at Veteran’s Cemetery in Makawao, veterans, active Duty and Reserve members and the families of the fallen will gather to honor the day.
Events will include introductions of medal winners, an address from U.S. Representative Mazie K. Hirono and a helicopter drop of thousands of red, white and blue carnations. In addition a parade of motorcycles will wind through the cemetery.
The event is free and all are welcome. Veteran’s Cenetery is on Baldwin Avenue Makai of Makawao Town.
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