General News

Melissa Chang via AP

Leaders in Hawaii's tourism industry are waiting for a definitive date on when they can reopen. They're also preparing to reopen safely and giving a lot of thought to what the future of the industry might look like.

AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy

Updated: 6/12/2020, 5:18 p.m. The state reported a sharp spike in cases of COVID-19 today, with 15 new infections, according to the Hawaii Department of Health. Gov. David Ige said the increase was expected as the state reopens businesses and activities in phases.

Kevin Schneider from Pixabay

Updated 6/22/20, 11 a.m.

International students studying in Hawaiʻi are having a rough time with the coronavirus shutting down travel, and the lack of job opportunities to help them pay their expenses. But financial aid programs available to American students, may not be open to those from other countries.

AP Photo/Dita Alangkara

Updated: 6/11/2020, 12:33 p.m.

Where we stand

Seven new cases of COVID-19 have been reported today by the state health department. All of the cases have been reported on Oahu.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

WASHINGTON — Army Gen. Mark Milley, the nation's top military officer, said Thursday he was wrong to accompany President Donald Trump on a walk through Lafayette Square that ended in a photo op at a church. He said his presence "created a perception of the military involved in domestic politics."

Nick Yee
Nick Yee

As unemployment and the demand for food remain high in the islands, there are some who are falling through the cracks when it comes to getting help. Even before the crisis, college students from abroad were having a tough time making ends meet. Now, some are hanging on by a thread.

Rexburg Police Department via AP

Updated 6/10/20, 4:30 p.m.

BOISE, Idaho — The bodies of two children uncovered in rural Idaho are a boy and his big sister who have been missing since September, relatives said Wednesday, bringing a grim end to a search that captivated people worldwide but no fewer questions about a case that has put their mother and her husband behind bars.

Ku'uwehi Hiraishi

Food shortages in communities statewide because of the COVID-19 pandemic helped higlight the vulnerability of Hawaiʻi’s food supply. We currently import nearly 90 percent of the food we eat. The issue has sparked discussions on strengthening food security in the islands.

daveiam/Flickr / CC 2.0 license

Updated: 6/10/2020, 1:11 p.m.

Where we stand

Four new cases of COVID-19 have been reported today by the state health department. All of the cases have been reported on Oahu. 

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children via AP

Updated 6/9/20, 3:35 p.m.

BOISE, Idaho — Authorities said they uncovered human remains at an Idaho man's home Tuesday as they investigated the disappearance of his new wife's two children — a case that's drawn global attention for its ties to two other mysterious deaths and the couple's doomsday beliefs.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced his nominations for two vacancies on the Honolulu Police Commission on Monday. Michael Broderick, the current president and CEO of the YMCA of Honolulu, and Doug Chin, former Hawaii attorney general, were nominated for the panel.


Updated  6/10/20 5:10 p.m.

The Hawaii Department of Human Services updated its classroom capacity guidelines Tuesday back to pre-pandemic ratios which are:

  • For three-year-olds, 12 children to one teacher
  • For four-year-olds, 16 children to one teacher
  • For five-and-over, 20 children to one teacher

Many child care providers are now reopening as more parents return to work. However, the added restrictions for social distancing have limited the number of children they can accept back. 


Maui County’s unemployment rose to 35% in April, the highest rate in the state due largely to the massive impact of the coronavirus on the tourism industry.

The Honolulu Police Department headquarters
Casey Harlow/HPR

The Honolulu Police Department is reviewing its policies in light of the nationwide call for police reforms.

Police Chief Susan Ballard said yesterday that an HPD committee began re-evaluating the department’s use of force policies in the last week. She says it has been five years since there was a complete review of that policy.

American Review of Reviews / Unviesity of Toronto Robarts Library

Despite decades of effort, state and local government in Hawaii have had little success in fostering diversification of the islands' tourism-centric economy. The COVID-19 pandemic recession has once again generated calls for standing up new industries and expanding existing ones that do not include tourism.

This series explores what some of those industries of the future might be and what local leaders can do to bringa about their growth.

PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

KAILUA-KONA — A Hawaii ocean shipping firm requesting federal coronavirus relief funding will continue operations under a reduced schedule and move its barge service to Mondays, officials said.

Casey Harlow / HPR

WAILUKU — The Maui County Council has approved an $822.6 million budget for the next fiscal year that includes $66.6 million in federal coronavirus relief funds.

Pixabay / Pixabay License

Updated: 6/8/20, 1:02 p.m.

When bars are allowed to open on Oahu next week, the question on a lot of minds is how will social distancing be enforced when patrons get intoxicated?

Rudy and Peter Skitterians/Pixabay / Pixabay license

The daily stream of COVID-19 news is unending. In its rigid grip, we can easily miss the Hawaii stories of struggle and quiet heroism that are playing out in our backyard. Here is a compilation of voices we've heard. And we look forward to hearing yours. Call our talkback line at 808-792-8217 or e-mail us at

DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement

A judge has imposed a $260 fine on one of three fisherman in Hawaii who was accused of violating the state's ban on aquarium fishing and recovered an illegal catch worth more than $37,000 in February, court officials said.

Ashley Mizuo/HPR

Updated: 6/7/2020, 12:15 p.m.

Hawaii recorded two new coronavirus cases today, both on Oahu.

The state health department now reports the number of cases stands at 675; deaths remain at 17.

The case count for Oahu is at 441, Maui County at 120, Hawaii Island at 81 and Kauai at 21. There are 12 cases diagnosed out of state. Some 617 people have been released from isolation. 

AP Photo/Seth Wenig

Updated: 6/7/2020, 4:57 p.m.

Police around the U.S. took a less aggressive stance and even sometimes joined protesters demanding a reckoning with institutional racism, as leaders in the city at the center of the latest call for police reforms pushed Sunday to dismantle its department.

AP Photo/Leo Correa

BARCELONA, Spain — The confirmed global death toll from the COVID-19 virus reached at least 400,000 fatalities on Sunday, a day after the government of Brazil broke with standard public health protocols by ceasing to publish updates of the number of deaths and infections in the hard-hit South American country.


Members of an Kailua community have expressed opposition to plans to build a rental apartment complex with primarily low-income units.

pixabay/Creative Commons
pixabay/Creative Commons

Updated: 6/7/2020, 1:02 p.m.

Hawaii recorded another nine new coronavirus cases Saturday, eight on Oahu and one diagnosed out of state. The nine are being investigated, the state health department said.

AP Photo/Julio Cortez

WASHINGTON — Scott Nichols, a balloon artist, was riding home on his scooter from the protests engulfing Minneapolis last weekend when he was struck by a rubber bullet fired from a cluster of police officers in riot gear.

wendy julianto from Pixabay

As Hawaii reopens, business owners and leaders are yearning for a single voice they can turn to for guidelines.

Cory Lum / Civil Beat

The state Department of Education recently released guidelines on reopening public schools. However, several members of the state Board of Education and the state teachers union took issue with some of the procedures on Thursday.

Alfred Derks from Pixabay

Updated: 6/5/2020, 7:53 p.m.

Where we stand

Hawaii recorded nine new coronavirus cases today, but three were older cases after discrepancies in lab reporting were corrected. Still, the net six cases are the largest number the state has reported in recent weeks. The last time the state had six new cases was on April 22. The state says they won't know the cause until the cases are fully investigated.

Parks Hotels & Resorts

As businesses reopen on Hawaiʻi Island, unemployed hotel workers are waiting for their chance to get back to work. Several hotels are already taking reservations beginning July 1, and that has some in the industry cautiously optimistic.