Friday, February 15, 2013

A Little Extra Aloha at the Capitol

Earlier this week, students, teachers, and families from ‘Halau Lokahi, a Hawaiian immersion charter school, made a visit to the Capitol to celebrate the opening of the Makahiki festivities. Kumu Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu led the school in a procession where they were greeted by Rep. Faye Hanohano (Puna), who joined in their oli (chant) and hoo kupu (gift giving to the ahu).

Kumu Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu has also been working with Rep. Hanohano’s office to put on a series of Hawaiian language classes for lawmakers this session.

“As a Hawaiian and as a lawmaker, it brings me great joy to see the success of Hawaiian immersion schools like ‘Halau Lokahi,” said Rep. Hanohano. “Language is at the heart of culture; the preservation and resurrection of the Hawaiian language ensures the future of our culture.”

Pat McManaman, DHS Director, on the Next Jordan's Journal

On the next episode of Jordan’s Journal, Rep. Jordan is joined by Pat McManaman, Director of the State Department of Human Services. Director McManaman provides an overview of the Department and then delves into the background and significance of a current piece of legislation, HB868.

Last year, Rep. Jordan submitted a resolution that led to the Department conducting a study which focused on developing methods to help families reliant upon public assistance to attain financial independence. The study resulted in the introduction of HB868, which would eliminate the asset limit for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

This episode is an excellent way to learn about the Department of Human Services and serves as a prime example of the Legislature cooperating with a State Department to better serve the people of Hawaii.

The show will air on Channel 54 on Sunday, February 17th at 8:30 p.m. and be rebroadcast on February 18th and 25th at 1:00 p.m. You can also view the episode on Rep. Jordan’s Vimeo channel, which has been embedded below.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Taro Task Force Briefs Lawmakers

The House Committee on Agriculture held an informational briefing to discuss issues of public concern regarding the current and future availability of taro and the protection and availability of taro producing lands. Representatives from the Taro Task Force briefed the Committee on the current state and possible future of taro in Hawaii then fielded questions.

The Task Force was established in 2008 and is composed of 18 members representing all of the major stakeholders regarding taro. Their recommendations included improving access to water in taro growing communities, increased apple snail containment and control, identifying and controlling invasive kalo varieties, and furthering the “board and stone in every home” movement.

Committee on Agriculture Chair Rep. Jessica Wooley scheduled the briefing to better inform committee members of the state of taro in Hawaii, so they will have as much information as possible when considering current legislation relating to Hawaii’s most culturally significant crop.

Mana Ai Daniel Anthony provided lawmakers with a taste of what's at stake

Decision making on HB484and HB734, both dealing with the protection of taro, will take place tomorrow at 8:00 am in Conference Room 325 of the State Capitol.