POSTED: Monday, June 01, 2009

UH regents OK 2 new degrees

The University of Hawaii Board of Regents approved two new degrees—one at UH-Manoa and the other at Maui Community College—at its meeting Friday in Hilo.

Starting this fall, students at UH-Manoa can complete course work towards a Bachelor of Arts in creative media.

The new degree program will be administered by the Academy of Creative Media and will prepare students to become directors, producers and designers. The academy was established in 2004 and now has 120 active majors.

Students in the program previously graduated with an interdisciplinary studies/creative media major.

The regents also approved a second four-year degree at Maui Community College: the Bachelor of Applied Science in engineering technology.

Maui Community College will begin accepting students in the program in the fall.


Lingle will discuss budget plans on television today

Gov. Linda Lingle will address the public at 1 p.m. today on her plans to balance the state budget in light of grim projections last week from the Council on Revenues.

Her 30-minute speech, which will also “;outline the state's path to economic recovery,”; will air live on television stations KHON and KHNL. KITV and KGMB will stream it live on their Web sites, and KGMB will rebroadcast the speech at 6:30 p.m.

“;The Council on Revenues' latest reduced revenue projections show that the state budget shortfall is much more severe than earlier projected,”; Lingle said in a statement, noting that she will be meeting throughout the weekend with staff to identify options to close the projected $185.6 million shortfall between now and June 30, as well as a projected $500 million shortfall in the fiscal 2010-11 budget period, which begins July 1.


Emergency siren test scheduled this morning

State Civil Defense will test its emergency sirens at 11:45 a.m. today.

The 45-second tone is part of a system to alert the public to emergencies that can pose a threat to life and property.

When it is sounded for real, residents are advised to tune in to local radio or television stations for more information.

Today also marks the beginning of hurricane season. Officials predict a near- to below-normal season, with three to five tropical storm systems in the Central Pacific. But there is a 20 percent chance of an above-normal season, they said. Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.


New farmers' market opens at Blaisdell Wednesday

The Honolulu Farm Bureau is opening a new Honolulu Farmers' Market at the Neal Blaisdell Center, which will showcase locally grown fruits, vegetables, flowers and plants.

The grand opening, which will take place 4-7 p.m. Wednesday, is incorporating the City and County of Honolulu's third annual “;Ag in the City”; event, which will allow both the general public and policymakers to learn about the local agriculture industry and meet the organizations and individuals that supply stores and restaurants with locally grown and produced products.

Blaisdell Center will serve as the continuing location for the Honolulu Farmers' Market every Wednesday.

Parking will be available at the Neal Blaisdell Center for a reduced rate of $3. For more information, contact Eleanor Nakama-Mitsunaga at 848-2074 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Mayor, residents dedicate Sunset Beach rec center

Mayor Mufi Hannemann and North Shore residents dedicated the new Sunset Beach Recreation Center yesterday.

The center is at 59-540 Kamehameha Highway, at the corner of Kahae Road and Kamehameha Highway, not far from the Sunset Fire Station and Sunset Beach Elementary School.



Subdivisions' sewage fouls tide pools

Sewage from two subdivisions in the Kapoho community of the Big Island is slowly destroying the Wai Opae tide pools, which offer some of the best snorkeling in Hawaii.

A nearly completed study details ways to deal with the sewage from 509 lots in the Kapoho Beach Lots and the Kapoho Vacationland Estates subdivisions. About half of the lots are developed.

A combined 60,000 gallons of waste water a day is produced by residents of the homes, which now use cesspools.

Solutions range from individual septic systems costing up to $32,000 each to a $7.8 million low-pressure sewer system.

Studies have found high levels of fecal bacteria in the nearshore ocean waters off the subdivisions. Researchers believe the pollution is coming from the cesspools.