State forest reserves on agenda
The state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife will hold a public hearing tonight on two proposed additions to state forest reserves.
DLNR proposes to add 3,716 acres in upper Moanalua Valley to the state's Honolulu watershed forest reserve, increasing its size to 10,983 acres. The land, recently purchased from the Damon Estate using state and federal funds, will be managed for watershed protection and research, native species habitat restoration, endangered species recovery, forest recreation, education and management, and other appropriate forestry purposes, DLNR said in a release.
The agency also proposes to add one-third of an acre near Dillingham airfield to the Mokuleia forest reserve.
The hearing starts at 6 p.m. at the Kalanimoku Building, 1151 Punchbowl St., Room 132. Requests for auxiliary aids such as large-print materials or sign-language interpreters can contact Marigold Zoll at 587-4166 or the Telecommunication Relay Service at 711.
Witnesses can present relevant information and opinions for the DLNR to consider. Written testimony also may be sent until May 22 to Forestry Program Manager, DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife, 1151 Punchbowl St. Room 325, Honolulu, HI 96813.
Architecture school picks leader
The School of Architecture at the University of Hawaii at Manoa has a new leader, the university has announced.
Clark E. Llewellyn, director of the School of Architecture at Montana State University, will be joining UH-Manoa as dean on July 1. Search committee members cited Llewellyn's experience, interest in Asia and fundraising background in making the selection.
"He recognizes the special connection of the university and the School of Architecture to the Hawaii sense of place," said Mary Boland, search advisory committee chairwoman.
Llewellyn replaces Raymond Yeh, who announced last year that he is returning to the faculty.
Llewellyn was hired on a three-year contract starting at $185,016 a year, a university spokesman said.
Technology show to return
The 2007 Technology and Internet Expo, Hawaii's only statewide technology "road show," will return for a fourth year, from noon to 6 p.m. Friday at the Maui Beach Hotel.
The event by Oceanic Time Warner Business Class will feature technologies from wireless and Internet service providers, hardware, software, Web-based technologies and networking systems, biotechnology, telemedicine, distance education and other fields.
Tickets are $2 at the door but free in advance at www.technologyandinternetexpo.com.
Kaneohe principal receives award
» Mitchell Otani
of Kaneohe Elementary School has been selected the Hawaii 2007 National Distinguished Principal.
Otani, a University of Hawaii-Manoa graduate and Kaneohe Elementary's principal since 1991, will travel to Washington, D.C., in October to be recognized for the award.
Otani was nominated by Lea Albert, complex-area superintendent for Castle and Kahuku. The National Association of Elementary School Principals and the U.S. Department of Education gave him the award last month.
» Iolani School senior Joshua Busse has won a $2,000 college scholarship in the Young Epidemiology Scholars Competition in Washington, D.C.
He was among 60 high school students selected out of more than 700 candidates nationally to compete in finals of the prestigious science competition.
His project was titled "HPV and Cervical Cancer Prevention: A comparative generational study quantifying the efficacy of an informational brochure at improving knowledge and an analysis of how this knowledge affects HPV vaccine acceptance."
Utilizing a variety of resources, he was able to put together information that could be disseminated to the public regarding cervical cancer, HPV and the new vaccines, said an Iolani spokesman. "He is an outstanding student all around."
Police, Fire, Courts
2 die after Pearl City car crash
Two people died early yesterday morning after their car spun out of control and crashed into a cement pillar on Kamehameha Highway in Pearl City.
Police said a 47-year-old Waianae woman driving the maroon four-door sedan and her passenger, a 41-year-old Kapolei man, died at the scene.
The car was speeding westbound around 3 a.m. on Kamehameha Highway near Zippy's Restaurant when it veered to the left and spun out of control, police said. It crossed the grass median and hit a street sign and utility pole before slamming into a natural-gas line and cement pillar.
The car landed in the lower parking structure of the Pearl City Business Plaza, across the street from Zippy's. The two were pinned inside the car, police said.
Police officers closed off Kamehameha Highway, and surrounding businesses shut off their gas lines.
It took a while for police and rescue personnel to open the area again because they feared there could be an explosion from the damaged gas line.
"It could have been much more dangerous," said Sharon Mello, who was working at the nearby 76 gas station. "We're very fortunate the gas line didn't explode."
Mello was not allowed to pump gas for customers until 4:25 a.m., she said.
Gifford Chang, property manager for the Pearl City Business Plaza, said all the stores opened by 11 a.m. yesterday.
Yesterday's deaths mark this year's 31st and 32nd traffic fatalities on Oahu, compared with 36 at this time last year, police said.
3 residents escape house fire
A stubborn house fire on Laamia Place in Waialae Iki displaced three people and a dog yesterday, all of whom escaped without injury.
All three residents -- a mother, father and their grown daughter -- were at home when the fire started shortly after 11 a.m.
"They were understandably upset," said Fire Capt. Terry Seelig. "The main thing was that they got out safely and that their house wasn't destroyed. It is damaged but replaceable."
Firefighters took more than 40 minutes to put out the blaze, in part because the three-story, A-shaped house was on a steep slope, said Seelig. They had the blaze extinguished by 12:08 p.m. after arriving there at 11:11 a.m.
"That is a longer time than we normally see," Seelig said.
The fire started from an electrical short in the wall next to an upstairs bedroom, then spread to the attic and wooden roof, he said. The damage estimate is $350,000, including water damage.
Firefighters contacted the American Red Cross to assist the family. However, they have friends who are helping them, Seelig said.
Maui pedestrian dies after struck
A 33-year-old Haiku man died after a car hit him late Saturday night as he was crossing Hana Highway.
Maui police said Keolanalani Fonseca was crossing the westbound lanes of Hana Highway around 10:45 p.m. when a two-door Toyota struck him.
Fonseca was taken to Maui Medical Center, where he later died, police said.
Police have not said whether speed, drugs or alcohol were factors in the crash.
Probation violator sought on Big Isle
Big Island police are asking for the public's help to find Kathy Ann Coles, a 50-year-old Kau woman wanted on a $3,000 warrant for violating probation.
Coles is 5 feet 5 inches tall, weighs about 115 pounds and has blond hair and blue eyes. She was known to live at the Hawaiian Ocean View Estates and might also frequent the Pahoa area, police said.
Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to call police at 935-3311 or CrimeStoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.