Molokai and Hawaii – Island Politics

Ho’olehua Veterans Center Stirs Controversy

Friday, November 30th, 2018

Ho’olehua Veterans Center Stirs Controversy

A proposed, controversial $4 million veterans center in Ho’olehua is moving forward, amid high emotions among veterans and confusion about the project’s origins. The proposed 7,000 square foot building to be located behind Lanikeha Community Center will house Veterans Affairs services, as well as a meeting room, classroom and office spaces, a kitchen and covered outdoor gathering area and serve as a joint facility with the Dept. of Hawaiian Homelands.

Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) board members say they sought $400,000 in funding a few years ago to complete the Kaunakakai Center parking lot and other remaining projects. The 3,000-square-foot structure on Wharf Road was finally completed in 2015 after a long struggle through permitting hoops and funding woes.…

Primary Election Results

Thursday, August 16th, 2018


Molokai voters joined residents around the state last Saturday in casting their ballot in the Primary Election. Some also voted early through walk-in voting or mailed ballots. Results largely favored incumbents, or those currently holding the seat.

Statewide, incumbent governor David Ige won the Democratic race with 50.2 percent of the votes over challenger Colleen Hanabusa with 43.4 percent. Ige will be facing Republican Primary winner Andrea Tupola, who received 53.0 percent of her party’s vote, in the General Election. Democratic Lieutenant Governor candidate Josh Green earned a spot on the November ballot with 30.2 percent of his party’s votes.…

Standing for `Olelo Hawaii

Thursday, February 1st, 2018

Standing for `Olelo Hawaii


University of Hawaii professor Samuel Kaleikoa Ka`eo was issued a warrant for his arrest last week after he spoke only Hawaiian in court on Maui. Ka`eo appeared in connection to protesting construction of a Haleakala telescope, and when Judge Blaine Kobayashi asked Ka`eo to identify himself as present in the Wailuku District Court Wednesday,  Ka`eo did so in Hawaiian. The judge didn’t recognize his presence and asked three more times for Ka`eo to give his name, to which he responded each time in Hawaiian.

“The court is unable to get a definitive determination for the record that the defendant seated in court is Mr.…

Women’s March Encourages Voting

Thursday, January 25th, 2018

Women’s March Encourages Voting


About 150 residents took to Kaunakakai’s main street last Saturday to join in the international Women’s March movement, marking one year since the march first took place around the world in 2017 following President Trump’s inauguration. Gathering at the library and marching to the ball park, participants held signs supporting causes like equality, environmental protection, women’s rights and making references to the recent false missile alert.

“Our mission was to get the young women aware of our movement and to get them to the polls, and not just once a year but all the local voting,” said one of the Molokai organizers, Christi Feeter.…

Running for County Council

Friday, January 19th, 2018

Keani Rawlins-Fernandez Campaign News Release

Keani Rawlins-Fernandez officially announced her intention to run again for the Maui County Council – Molokai race on Jan. 11. After a tight race for the same seat in 2016, missing it by just eight percent, her supporters strongly encouraged her to run again.

Keani has a strong educational and professional background, having graduated from both the William S. Richardson School of Law with certificates in Native Hawaiian Law and Environmental Law; and the Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. Her experience at the Hawaii State Legislature, including an internship as Legislative Aid for Representative Jarrett Keohokalole, has equipped her to collaborate with State officials regarding County specific issues.…

False Missile Alert Causes Panic

Thursday, January 18th, 2018

False Missile Alert Causes Panic

An accidental alert warning of a ballistic missile attack sent to Hawaii cell phones last Saturday morning left residents in shock and panic. The message, sent in error by the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency at 8:05 a.m., read, “BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.”

Officials said the message was sent out as a result of human error — an employee “pushing the wrong button.”

Vern Miyagi, administrator for the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, said a state emergency management employee clicked the wrong message during a routine drill that happens three times a day during shift changes.…

Sen. Schatz Addressed Residents

Friday, August 25th, 2017

Sen. Schatz Addressed Residents

U.S. Senator Brian Schatz visited with Molokai residents last Tuesday during a town hall event at Kualapu`u Center, sharing news on national policy and answering questions. From North Korea to natural resource protection, the Democrat from Hawaii engaged on a wide range of topics and talked about being in politics during “an incredibly tumultuous time.” He also encouraged community members to reach out to his Hawaii staff anytime and promised they would be heard and responded to.

“I have an obligation to take care of the needs of the people across Hawaii,” said Schatz. “So even as I’m being critical of the President, or fighting climate change or working on improving our healthcare system… I also know that in the end, my job is to bring home resources for needs that we have back home… and also in the age of Trump, to stand up for what is right.”

With North Korea is ramping up their missile capabilities and their proximity of Hawaii is on the minds of many, he suggested two-fold action to pursue diplomacy while also beefing up our defense systems.…

Town Hall with Tulsi Gabbard

Friday, April 7th, 2017

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard News Release

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard will be holding a statewide Town Hall Tour in April, including a visit to Molokai.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to represent the people of Hawaii in Congress,” said Rep. Gabbard, who represents the people of Congressional District 2. “Our district is spread out, includes every island in the state, and is a long way from Washington, so my staff and I focus on outreach in a variety of ways to serve Hawaii’s people and keep them updated on what’s happening in our nation’s capital. At my upcoming statewide Town Hall Tour, I look forward to meeting with folks on every island, sharing a congressional update, discussing local and national issues, and answering questions.”

The Molokai Town Hall meeting will be held on Monday, April 17 from 4:30 to 6 p.m.…

Molokai’s Women’s March

Thursday, January 26th, 2017

Molokai’s Women’s March

Nearly 100 Molokai residents joined more than two million worldwide in the Women’s March movement that took place last Saturday.

Inspired by an initial initiative to march on Washington, D.C. corresponding to Donald Trump’s first full day as President, hundreds of thousands of people around the world rallied, voicing a variety of sentiments. Some marched for women’s rights, others made a statement against Trump, and still others championed equal rights for all. Though officially called the Women’s March, the event featured participants of all ages and genders. In more than 700 cities, towns and villages — in locations that included the near Arctic Circle, the Congo, France, Iceland, Israel, Mexico, Serbia, the U.K., and across Hawaii — residents joined to make a powerful statement.…

Local Election Results

Thursday, November 17th, 2016


This year’s General Election brought results that shook the nation, with Republican Donald Trump becoming the President elect over Hillary Clinton. Maui County’s results largely favored incumbents but saw some changes in the County Council. Molokai’s Lynn DeCoite won the District 13 State Representative race over challenger Nick Nikhilananda. For federal representation, Brian Schatz held his seat as U.S. Senator and Tulsi Gabbard remains the District II U.S. Representative. Stacy Helm Crivello remains Molokai’s County Council member, winning the election over Keani Rawlins-Fernandez. Upsets in the county council include Alika Atay sweeping incumbent Dain Kane, and Kelly King topping incumbent Don Couch.…