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POSTED: Tuesday, July 14, 2009

TriWest is awarded defense contract

TriWest Healthcare Alliance has been awarded a $16 billion contract to continue providing military families with health care as well as to manage the 21-state TRICARE West Region for the Department of Defense.

TriWest will continue to serve 2.7 million active-duty personnel as well as their families and retirees.

The contract includes a transition period, plus five one-year option periods for health care delivery beginning April 1.

Go! restores lower Hilo-Honolulu fare

Interisland carrier go! has dropped its Hilo-Honolulu fare to $43 from $63 after rivals Hawaiian Airlines and Mokulele Airlines failed to match the increase that go! implemented Friday.

Go! raised its fare after the state Department of Transportation imposed a 371 percent increase for the use of the Hilo Airport waiting lounge. The state DOT, citing airport activity and revenue and expenditure forecasts, boosted the holdroom rate it charges airlines at Hilo to $18.43 a passenger from $3.91. It is 100 times higher than the holdroom rate of 18 cents a passenger at Kona Airport.

The DOT, which instituted the higher fee on July 1, has since reached out to the affected carriers and is now re-evaluating the rates.

Aqua to manage the Waikiki Pearl

Aqua Hotels & Resorts has taken over management of the Honolulu Prince Hotel—following its $5 million renovation—and renamed it the Aqua Waikiki Pearl. The Honolulu Prince Hotel had no connection to the Hawaii Prince Hotel Waikiki, a Prince Resorts Hawaii property.

The Pearl, located at 415 Nahua St., is “;an excellent addition to the Aqua brand,”; said Elizabeth Churchill, Aqua's vice president of sales and marketing.

“;The changes and improvements were all-encompassing and totally renovated the hotel,”; Churchill said.

To celebrate the changes, Aqua Waikiki Pearl is offering “;Pearls of Summer”; specials that are available until Sept. 30, she said. For more information, go to www.aquaresorts.com or call 943-9291.

2 are convicted in insurance fraud

The state Insurance Division recently prosecuted two cases of insurance fraud that resulted in two individuals being assessed penalties.

On June 23 a Circuit Court judge sentenced Amy Waikiki Fernandez of Wailuku to 180 days in prison and five years of probation, and ordered her to perform 200 hours of community service and to pay restitution to Majestic Insurance Agency, plus court fees. Fernandez was accused of embezzling $28,000 in insurance premiums from Majestic from January 2006 to January 2007, leaving at least 10 individuals and businesses without automobile, liability and or/health insurance.

On June 30, Ricson Bunghanoy of Kailua-Kona was ordered to pay a fine of $1,000, plus court fees, for attempting to dupe a local insurance company into paying $14,500 for a previous motorcycle claim.

On the move

» Starwood Hotels and Resorts Waikiki has hired Serena Humay as public relations manager. She was previously a senior Japanese marketing services coordinator at Starwood Vacation Ownership as well as an advertising account executive at PacRim Marketing Group.

» Goodwill Industries International has honored Douglas Smith as the 2009 Elsine Katz Volunteer Leader of the Year. He is a partner in the law firm of Damon Key Leong Kupchak Hastert and has served in several critical volunteer roles at Goodwill Industries of Hawaii.