Time to reinvent

LIHU‘E — Mallory Roe was doing a thriving business as a wedding destination photographer before the appearance of COVID-19 in Hawai‘i.

Try Eat Hawai‘i now open

LIHU‘E — The Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau, in collaboration with Matthew Oliver of the Makai and Mauka Sushi, introduced a web-based computer program to buy and sell Kaua‘i-grown produce.

Wedding, Wiki permits on hold

HONOLULU – The Wiki Permits online system is the permitting service for authorized applicants to reserve and purchase permits for commercial activity (beach weddings, etc.) on unencumbered State lands, specifically on state public beaches.

Lawmakers might simply follow the herd

It seems like every year we have a legislature, we have dozens of legislative tax proposals to wade through. Some would lessen the burden on the beleaguered consumer, but most would do the reverse.

Kukui Grove does social distancing

LIHU‘E — Effective Wednesday, Kukui Grove Center changed its operation hours to be in compliance with social-distancing guidelines established by health officials, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and state and local guidelines.

Retailers rearrange businesses

PUHI — Box stores across the country are adjusting hours or closing their doors temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic including a temporary closure of the Macy’s and a slight hours of operation adjustment at the Walmart in Lihu‘e.

Bars closed, restaurants dine-out only

LIHUE — Governor David Ige closed churches, clubs, theaters and bars statewide on Tuesday, limited restaurants to drive-through, take-out, pick-up or delivery only and limited social gatherings to 10 people or less to follow Centers for Disease Control guidelines to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Gas prices dropping

LIHU‘E — Prices at the pump in Hawai‘i are lowering, though not at the rate of the national average, which has reached a 2020 low due to recent volatility in the global oil market.

Hunkered down in Hanalei

HANALEI — Residents hunkered down on north side of the Hanalei River on Monday, as heavy rains closed down Kuhio Highway for most of the day, and though that triggered a slower sales day for many, business owners say they’re starting to see impacts from COVID-19.

Call ahead, take out

LIHU‘E – Restaurateurs on Kaua‘i are removing chairs from their dining rooms and relying heavily on delivery and takeout options as health officials continue to stress social distancing as the primary way to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

Green fees – but not the golfing kind

Senate Bill 2696, which the Senate has just given to the House for consideration, is a bill “Relating to Green Fees.” These green fees have nothing to do with playing golf, however; they are per visitor, per stay charges the money from which goes to protect and preserve the environment. Some national governments already charge them, including the Republic of Palau, New Zealand, and the Maldives. So, SB 2696 is calling for a feasibility study and implementation plan, assuming that the fee will be charged beginning in 2022.

Hawai‘iUSA supports reading

LIHU‘E — The Hawai‘iUSA Community Outreach office opened for business, Tuesday morning at the Kukui Grove Center — just in time for the Department of Education Spring Break.

Just a few ‘technical amendments’ in Legislature

Some of the bills making their way through our Legislature are sponsored by executive departments. One such department, the Department of Taxation, is behind a few of them. One of them worth mentioning, introduced as SB2922 and HB2366, proposes to change some criminal penalties in our transient accommodations tax (TAT) law to civil fines … and “to make various technical amendments,” as the bill summary states.

Proposed state improvement surcharge

In the past few legislative sessions, there always had been one or two proposals to raise taxes in a big way. Some of them got pretty far along the road to becoming law, and some of them actually became law.

Cash flow woes

Joan Porter, the co-founder of the Anaina Hou Community Park in Kilauea, has penned an open letter to the community warning that the multimillion-dollar philanthropy from her and her late husband, Bill Porter, which built the park in 2009 and has kept it open ever since, is coming to an end. She asks the community to respond financially to ensure the facility will survive.

Do you buy fuel? Then be very afraid!

We have occasionally written about a “carbon tax,” something environmentalists appear to be supporting enthusiastically. The basic idea behind one is that a tax is placed upon the purchase of all fuels that result in carbon emissions when the fuel is burned to release energy. The amount of the tax is based on the type of fuel and is priced to be a certain dollar amount per metric ton of carbon emitted into our atmosphere.

Kauai Island Brewery donates to autism group

PORT ALLEN — Autism awareness received a boost on Kaua‘i thanks to a $1,250 donation from the staff at Kaua‘i Island Brewing Company, who have been stashing cash in a lucky-cat statue that sits at the brewery entrance in Port Allen.

Company fined for ocean pollution

HONOLULU — A federal judge in Hawaii has ordered a Singapore-based shipping company to pay $1.75 million in fines for allegedly dumping bilge waste directly into the ocean.