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The Conversation: Will Hawaii Adopt Automatic Voter Registration?

Nick Yee / HPR

Common Cause on automatic voter registration; Scott Miscovich on expanding COVID testing nationwide; Reality Check with Civil Beat: School superintendent not renewing contract; State of local businesses from the eyes of Oahu Auctions; Talk story with Sonia Lo of Lanai's Sensei Ag

Common Cause on automatic voter registration

2020 saw changes at the Hawaii Office of Elections, which conducted its first election entirely by mail. Now, another innovation is on the docket - automatic voter registration. Sanday Ma of Common Cause Hawaii spoke to The Conversation's Savannah Harriman-Pote about what "automatic" voter registration actually means. SB 159 passed through the Senate and has made it to the House. If it passes there, Hawaii would join 20 other states that already have AVR.

Sandy Ma, executive director, Common Cause Hawaii

Credit Scott Miscovich

  Dr. Scott Miscovich on expanding COVID testing nationwide

Many people are reflecting on the last year and the impact of COVID-19 on our lives. During the early parts of the pandemic, Dr. Scott Miscovich of Premier Medical Group could be seen at a drive-through testing event at Kakaako Waterfront Park. At the time, he had about 15 employees. Now, he has 1,000 across the country as he has been tapped by major athletic and corporate organizations to run their testing programs.

Dr. Scott Miscovich, Premier Medical Group Hawaii

Reality Check with Civil Beat: School superintendent not renewing contract

Hawaii's Schools Superintendent Christina Kishimoto said Tuesday that the debate over whether to renew her contract when it expires in July has become an "unnecessary distraction" that drove her decision to step down but promised to remain focused on efforts to reopen more schools during the time she has left. Civil Beat reporter Suevon Lee tells us more about the announcement. Click here to read her story at CivilBeat.org.

Civil Beat reporter Suevon Lee

State of local businesses from the eyes of Oahu Auctions

Many businesses are auctioning off their goods as they shut down for good, or downsize. The Plaza Club and Alan Wong's are a just a few of the well known eateries, and Love's Bakery is one of the larger companies closing due to the COVID-19 crisis. And now, the Honolulu Sign Company is downsizing after eight decades in one location. Oahu Auctions is handling the closure of the Kalihi warehouse. We talked to auction owner Alicia Brandt about the business snapshot as companies shut down for good or pare down as they try and stay in business. Click here to see a catalog of items up for auction.

Alicia Brandt, owner, Oahu Auctions & Liquidations

Credit Courtesy Sensei Ag

  Talk story with Sonia Lo of Lanai's Sensei Ag

Last month we chatted with Sonia Lo, the CEO of Sensei Ag, a new Lanai company with the backing of billionaire Larry Ellison. We were struck by her resume. Her parents were diplomats. She was raised living around the world and speaks seven languages. In addition to her business background, she holds professional chef and pastry qualifications form London and City College, and manages to raise two young children while commuting to Lanai from the Bay Area. She says when it comes to food, she is driven by "taste, texture and aroma," thanks to her culinary background. Click herefor more information on Sensei Ag.

Sonia Lo, CEO, Sensei Ag

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Catherine Cruz is the host of The Conversation. Originally from Guam, she spent more than 30 years at KITV, covering beats from government to education. Contact her at ccruz@hawaiipublicradio.org.
Savannah Harriman-Pote is the energy and climate change reporter. She is also the lead producer of HPR's This Is Our Hawaiʻi podcast. Contact her at sharrimanpote@hawaiipublicradio.org.
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