POSTED: Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stranded boat will get a tow

A marine salvage company will attempt to tow a 72-foot sailboat off a reef in Waikiki at high tide early this morning, according to the state. The Momentum ran aground at about 2:15 a.m. Monday about 100 yards off the Sheraton Waikiki after its bow severed the anchor line, according to the boat's owner.

The owner and two other people on board swam to shore.

The state said the owner's insurance company has contracted with Cates International marine salvage company to tow the boat off the reef during the high tide at 4 a.m., weather permitting. The boat, stuck at the “;Pops”; surf break, was being fitted with float bags yesterday.

Once freed, the boat could be towed to Keehi Marine Center if it needs repairs, the state said.

The Coast Guard said Monday that there was no immediate danger of pollutants being released.


Libraries get $4.1M for energy projects

Gov. Linda Lingle has released $4,147,000 for improvements to increase energy efficiency at public libraries statewide.

The majority of the funds — $2,570,000 — will cover design and construction costs for energy efficiency projects at various libraries and retrofitting building systems so they operate more effectively. The improvements are expected to be completed by next summer, a release said.

The air-conditioning towers at the main Hawaii State Public Library will be replaced at a cost of $1.5 million. The towers are almost 18 years old (average life expectancy is 15 to 20 years) and are leaking water onto the roof of the library. The project is expected to be completed in September 2011.

About $77,000 is earmarked for the replacement of the air-conditioning units at Kahului Public Library. The estimated cost of the project is $477,000, and it is scheduled to be completed in July.

The improvements are part of the governor's Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, which aims to have 70 percent of Hawaii's energy come from clean sources by the year 2030, including 40 percent from renewable energy and 30 percent through energy efficiency measures.


Funds aid state park conservation effort

Gov. Linda Lingle released $1 million that will allow the Department of Land and Natural Resources to carry out conservation improvements at state parks.

The department will use the funds to design renewable energy sources to power park facilities such as water system pumps, sewer system pumps, trail lighting and rental cabins. The funds will also allow the department to install water-efficient fixtures and energy conservation measures.

In fiscal year 2009 the state parks spent more than $300,000 for electricity costs and nearly $460,000 for water and sewer costs. In a news release, Laura Thielen, director of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, said the shift to renewable energy sources and energy efficiency measures will help in cost savings that are needed to fund park operations and ongoing maintenance.


Class covers caring for Parkinson's victims

A free public class providing assistance to family caregivers on how to care for a loved one diagnosed with Parkinson's disease will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. today at Attention Plus Care, 1580 Makaloa St., Suite 1060.

Sarah Murphy, a licensed registered nurse, will lead the class.

To make a reservation or inquire about upcoming “;Aging in Hawaii”; classes, call 440-9372.



County buildings renovated

Hawaii County government administrators are moving back into the county building in Hilo this week after completion of a $25 million renovation project, according to a news release.

The mayor's office, the County Council, the county clerk and six departments will be back in the building at 25 Aupuni St. by Monday, the release said.

Work to refurbish the 43-year-old building began in 2006.

Offices in the renovated building will be open on a staggered basis as they move back in, according to the release.

Telephone numbers for all departments will remain the same except for Fire Administration, 932-2900, and the Fire Prevention Bureau, 932-2912.

The county legislative auditor will not be moving into the building, but will instead remain at the Ironworks Building, the release said.