Hawaii Updates: Cases Up 2; Beaches Open With Restrictions, Restaurants Can Open Dine-In June 5

May 16, 2020

Updated: 5/16/2020, 3:11 p.m.

Where we stand

Hawaii recorded two new coronavirus cases yesterday, continuing a run of days with zero or few cases, spurring the moves to reopen the economy.

The state health department reported the number of recorded cases is at 639 after an adjustment and deaths stand at 17. The case count for Oahu is at 415, Maui County at 117, Hawaii Island at 76 and Kauai County at 21. There are 10 cases diagnosed out of state.

Beaches open with restrictions, June 5 set for restaurant dine-in services 

The city and other counties are easing the restrictions on use of the beaches while looking ahead to opening hair salons, barbers and restaurants. 

Beaches and sand bars within the city are open beginning today for activities beyond exercising, the city announced. 

No more than 10 people can gather on the beaches and the group needs to be from the same household. Those not part of the same household will need to abide by social distancing requirements, such as standing six feet apart, although a caregiver can accompany a dependent.

The beaches and sand areas are open from a half hour before sunrise to a half hour after sunset, except for shoreline fishing or for those engaged in permitted outdoor exercise. Their hours of use are as previously announced.

The city gave no expiration for its latest order.

Kauai and Maui have similarly eased restrictions on beaches, but both are doing so under a two-week pilot.

Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami has clarified what is allowed on the beaches, restrictions for which were eased starting today. People are free to lie, sit and sunbathe under an umbrella or pop-up tent, he said. 

Lifting of restrictions on Maui beaches begins today with guidelines similar to those for Kauai and Oahu.

Maui Mayor Michael Victorino urged people to abide by the rules. He said the county will reassess the easing of restrictions around May 25th. Certain parks on Maui will also reopen starting today.

A city spokesman also said by email that Honolulu received approval from the governor to open for restaurant dine-in services with certain restrictions on June 5. Guidelines are being finalized, and an announcement will be made in the coming week.

On Maui, Victorino said hair salons and restaurants can plan to open May 25 and restaurants on June 5. Drive-in religious services can open on May 22.

All will need to operate with safety guidelines in place.

Hawaii's mandatory 14-day quarantine for arriving visitors and returning residents is still in place. The state "safer-at-home" order is also in effect, with resident encouraged to wear masks when they are out and about and to return home when they are done with their business.

Kauai food distribution today

Food boxes will be distributed today at 2 p.m. to Kauai families who need the help at the Hanapēpē Neighborhood Center.

Enter from the south Puolo Road entrance next to Wong’s Restaurant and exit on north Puolo Road. Recipients will not be allowed to line up before noon. 

Families will need to show documentation of need, such as a Med-QUEST or CHIP health insurance card, employer's letter of termination or reduction of hours; letter of eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits or application for benefits; SNAP card or eligibility letter; EBT card or eligibility letter; card or eligibility letter for TANF or WIC; or other proof of need.

Other food distribution days include:

• May 23: Kapa‘a Ballfield (Bryan J. Baptiste Sports Complex)

• May 30: North Shore (site yet to be determined)

TheBus office to open for disability pass renewals, applications

TheBus pass office at the Kalihi Transit Center will reopen starting Wednesday for disability bus pass processing, including renewals due by June 1.

Office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday to Friday, except state holidays. Applicants should be in line by 3 p.m. The line will be shut down at 4 p.m. The office will close on Monday, May 25, for Memorial Day. 

The schedule for applicants by the first letter or letters of their last names are as follows:

• Wednesday, May 20: A to C.

• Thursday, May 21: D to H.

• Friday, May 22: I to L.

• Tuesday, May 26: M to O.

• Wednesday, May 27: P to SK.

• Thursday, May 28: SL to Z.

• Friday, May 29: Open schedule.

Applicants are required to wear masks and practice social distancing while in line.

 

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Editor's note: We’d like to hear how you’re coping with the latest developments in dealing with the spread of the coronavirus. You can call our talkback line at 808-792-8217. Or e-mail us at talkback@hawaiipublicradio.org.