Isle site up for World Heritage
The U.S. Interior Department is proposing to have the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument nominated as a World Heritage site.
The locations are designated under an international treaty for the preservation of natural and cultural heritage sites of global significance.
Located in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, the monument covers almost 140,000 square miles of ocean wilderness.
The state Department of Land and Natural Resources said last week that Papahanaumokuakea and Mount Vernon, Va., will be proposed as the United States' first nominations for consideration for the World Heritage list since 1994.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island is the only World Heritage site in Hawaii. It was designated in 1987.
1,000 isle families to be in study
A project will recruit 1,000 Hawaii families to participate in a national study to track children from birth to age 21.
"Hawaii's part in the nationwide study could improve our children's health for generations to come," said Dr. Lynnae Sauvage, interim chairwoman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Women's Health in the John A. Burns School of Medicine, who will lead the project locally.
"With this study, we will be able to look at factors affecting our children's development, including the physical environment and our cultural practices," she said in a news release from the school.
California Rep. Doris Matsui, head of the Congressional Children's Study Working Group, said the national study is expected to provide answers "to some of the most perplexing children's health trends we are encountering."
Researchers will follow 100,000 children, seeking information to prevent and treat such health problems as autism, asthma, birth defects, diabetes, heart disease and obesity.
Sauvage will begin recruiting Hawaii participants in January.
Cemetery marks obon season
To commemorate the obon season, next of kin may place potted plants and artificial flowers at grave sites at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, the cemetery announced last week.
Items will be removed on Aug. 18. Permanent plantings, statues, vigil lights, glass objects of any kind, and any other commemorative items are not permitted. Nothing may be attached to headstones or markers, nor may metal hooks be used.
Obon is a Japanese Buddhist tradition of honoring ancestral spirits held during the summer.
Lingle wants transit up for vote
Gov. Linda Lingle signed a petition yesterday calling for a ballot initiative asking voters whether Honolulu should exclude trains from its mass transit options.
Lingle says she isn't advocating for or against the city's current rail plan.
She said she signed the petition to give the people of Oahu the opportunity to make an informed decision about what she says would be the most expensive construction project in state history.
The rail line from Kapolei to Ala Moana is estimated to cost $4 billion to build.
Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann has criticized Lingle for being "wishy-washy" about rail.
The group Stop Rail Now aims to gather over 40,000 signatures to ensure voters are given the chance to weigh in on rail on election day in November.
More parking at Kona airport
An additional 563 public and employee parking spaces will be built at Kona International Airport on the Big Island.
The cost of the project is $7 million.
Gov. Linda Lingle said the addition of new parking will improve efficiency and convenience for the traveling public as well as those who work at the airport.
Upon completion of the project, Kona International will offer 1,813 parking stalls, with 1,279 for public use and 534 reserved for airport and airline employees.
Police, Fire, Courts
Man critically hurt in vehicle crash
A 22-year-old Kapolei man was critically injured after a single-vehicle crash yesterday morning.
Police said that at about 5:45 a.m., a black 2005 Ford Mustang was traveling south on Kamehameha Highway just before Mililani.
As the Mustang approached the Waikalani Drive intersection, it apparently veered off the roadway, up a hill into a dirt embankment and returned to the roadway before rolling over at least twice, police said.
The man sustained head and arm injuries, and was taken to the Queen's Medical Center, where he was reported in critical condition, police said.
Woman arrested in Waikiki attack
Police arrested a 40-year-old woman yesterday who allegedly assaulted a 63-year-old man with a shard of glass in Waikiki.
Shortly after 5 p.m. yesterday, the woman and man argued. Police said she broke a glass cup and cut the man on his finger, using a glass shard.
Officers arrested the woman on suspicion of second-degree assault.