Kaua‘i restructuring tier system for less restrictions

LIHU‘E — The county is working on restructuring the tier system again, Mayor Derek Kawakami said Monday, and vaccination rate may soon become a trigger for a not-yet-established Tier 5.

“Tier 4 is the least restrictive of the Kaua‘i County COVID tiers, but we are working with our state partners on restructuring our Tier Chart to allow for a Tier 5, with even less restrictions,” Kawakami said.

A county spokesperson said changes could come to activities that currently have a max capacity or group limit.

In the past, Kawakami has noted that the tier system, which was originally proposed in October and updated earlier this month, is outdated.

The Department of Health reported that 47% of Kaua‘i residents are fully vaccinated, and 56% of the population have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Over 80% of kupuna are vaccinated, Kaua‘i District Health Officer Dr. Janet Berreman said Monday.

“We continue discussions with (Gov. David Ige) and the state on this proposal and we expect to have more details available later this week, so stay tuned,” Kawakami said.

The county shifted back to Tier 4 on Monday after a spike in cases at the end of April and early May, which forced the island to Tier 3, with restrictions on social gatherings (five indoors and 25 outdoors) and additional restrictions on restaurants and bar capacity.

On Tier 4, up to 10 people can gather indoors and 25 outdoors in a social setting. The maximum group size indoors at a restaurant can be up to 10, or 25 outdoors here.

No new COVID-19 infections were reported Monday by the DOH.

“We are not likely to go back to the days when we had full weeks with no new cases, but this spike showed us that Kaua‘i can do a good job of getting COVID under control,” Berreman said.

Berreman said that the state’s mask mandate may soon be changing, too, to be in line with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which recommended vaccinated individuals do not need to wear a mask in most settings.

“The Governor’s statewide mask mandate remains in place, and applies to everyone, whether vaccinated or not,” Berreman said. “The Governor works closely with the Department of Health, and I’m sure the mandate will be adapted in the coming weeks.”

16 Comments
  1. RGLadder37 May 25, 2021 12:26 am Reply

    I got the ninja black face mask. I bought it from Targets stores. It looks really neat. Like I am a fighting Ninja. It has 2 layers of protective clothing to it. I use it every where I go. It looks so cool. It only cost me $2.50 dollars and 50 cents. By all means, do continue to wear it if you are still skeptical about this whole thing. Better safe than sorry.


    1. Stop May 25, 2021 11:10 am Reply

      You’re culturally appropriating Asian
      Heritage. Stop the hate. Asians are already so discriminated against here. The chief of police makes fun of them, they make up the majority of residents, mostly employees of highly sought after county and state jobs. The are subjected to nepotism on their behalf. Wearing a ninja mask highlights these injustices


      1. RGLadder37 May 26, 2021 5:30 pm Reply

        I like reading about Ethnic Studies too. Asians account for the world’s most populated race. So if you are an Asian, Japanese, Chinese, Pakistani, or anyone of those Asians, it is good to know that they share a common trait. For example, I come from the line of a Pakistani. But was from Kaua’i. So I am a negro like skin color only a tadd lighter than the negro. Pakistani. I am into model Airplanes that fly, and just about any electronics around. The one common trait about asians from the Asian continents is that the physical traits or intellectual traits are similar. So if you are a Japanese, certain similar traits exist. I’m from Honolulu. I have been born in Hawai’i. Imagine that, a Pakistani asian born in Hawai’i.


  2. alien May 25, 2021 8:34 am Reply

    We are no longer in a “emergency” so your rules are pretty much those of a Dicktator.


  3. Tear 5 May 25, 2021 8:43 am Reply

    So tier 5 which doesn’t exist yet. But you’re gonna create something else with restrictions but less that 4. How about just drop the mayoral dictations already. We are sick of you derek kawakami.


    1. Glenn May 25, 2021 11:31 pm Reply

      Dear “Tear 5” and “alien”,
      I venture to say that the MAJORITY of us are NOT sick of Mayor Kawakami. He’s doing his JOB.
      And I venture to say that nearly all of us did NOT get sick with COVID-19 because he has (for the most part) done the right thing under the developing circumstances:
      1. keeping us well,
      2. isolating those who caught the disease, and
      3. protecting us from diseased outsiders.


      1. alien May 26, 2021 9:03 am Reply

        Glen, kept myself safe by following the science. Not all of us look to lying politicians who are motivated by control and money to guide ourselves. Traveled multiple times and tested after I returned even though it was not required, before I interacted with my friends/ family. Lost most of my work due to the politics that King Covidiot applied to his rules. Politicians =suffering turn off the news and open your eyes.


  4. It’s over May 25, 2021 3:24 pm Reply

    It is time to return to normal as far as making rules. I want to know what the decision point is for ending the emergency proclamation! It has never been published. I understood it initially, but now it smells of simply a desire to hold onto power. What decisions can’t be made via our council and mayor, using normal procedures now?


  5. MamaTree May 25, 2021 4:10 pm Reply

    “Of all manifestations of power, restraint impresses men the most.” Thucydides
    Kawakami, your constituents are unimpressed, to say the least.


  6. CommonSenseish May 25, 2021 4:32 pm Reply

    I took a mini vacation to another island this past week. I was greeted at the airport on Maui and easily scanned my QR code with a airport worker, gave my license and I was on my way.

    RETURNING TO KAUAI… I got off the plane feeling like a criminal. National Guard, KPD, Airport Police AND THE FIRE DEPARTMENT were verbally pushing us down the line with NO ALOHA. I am a returning resident and I am embarrassed by the way we were treated and for anyone else that comes here. IDK why anyone would want to vacation here. It’s beyond me.


  7. Kalaheo Resident May 25, 2021 6:11 pm Reply

    Actually Mayor Kawakami,

    I know many people, myself included, who appreciate the science and metrics-based approach that you and your team have been taking. Restrictions are easing, commensurate with infection rates and vaccination levels.

    As for those of you chiming in complaining about your freedoms and dictatorship: why don’t you get off the couch, stop complaining, and get back to work. You’re the ones the rest of us are tired of.


    1. alien May 26, 2021 8:47 am Reply

      You assume a lot. How do you know if I am working? It is obvious the brainwashing is complete when you believe in politicians.


    2. frequent visitor May 26, 2021 4:27 pm Reply

      What science? Masks do not protect. Cheap medicines work but are suppressed. Look at Texas and Florida. Your politicians have killed people with the lock-downs.All to keep power.


    3. RGLadder37 May 28, 2021 7:10 pm Reply

      He doesn’t have a team. Because the guy is dumb. I’m a Pakistani and is considered dumb for our standards. Building stuffs. Science is rich. I never did play sports or surf. 1977. High school grad. I just worked. I now work somewhere else. STEM. I am a believer in STEM. Useless advertisement for the few. I hope they don’t use Kauai to fund UH or their athletics. Ridiculous! Money is the issue. Collect for it the right way. Not place us in sports. Kapaa high school. Grads.


  8. MICHAEL WALSH May 26, 2021 10:54 am Reply

    I am from Florida where we have the best Governor in the Country. I hope you all understand that every Covid restriction that you have in place is unconstitutional.


    1. CommonSenseish May 27, 2021 7:15 am Reply

      Thank you Captain Obvious. We live in a very dem state and people here like to complain about why don’t things change, but they keep voting for the same people…. so we brought this upon ourselves. Guess that means you won’t be visiting our island and tying up our roads 🙂 Thanks!


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