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Newswatch

For Saturday, July 9, 2011

By Star-Advertiser Staff and News Services

POSTED:



Meth use declines in isle work force

A Hawaii drug testing company says crystal methamphetamine use has dropped to its lowest level since it began tracking work-force test statistics in 2004.

Diagnostic Laboratory Services said in a news release Thursday that for the second quarter of the year, crystal meth use dropped to 0.4 percent from 1.1 percent among the workers and job candidates it tests.

Use of synthetic urine in an attempt to mask drug use was essentially the same as last quarter.

Marijuana, cocaine and opiate use also remained essentially the same.

Carl Linden, Diagnostic Laboratory Services' scientific director of toxicology, says the past quarter's work-force drug testing statistics show relatively low drug use across the board. He says the drop in crystal meth is a welcome change from increases in previous years.

APEC helpers sought

Sunday is the deadline for volunteers to apply to help at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference, Nov. 8-13 at the Hawai‘i Convention Center. Volunteers are needed in such areas as information, hospitality, transportation and event setup. Go to www.apec2011hawaii.com/volunteer-opportunities to sign up.

NEIGHBOR ISLANDS

Roadwork set for park

A series of projects to reconstruct roads at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on Hawaii island will begin Monday.

Work will start on Crater Rim Drive at Jaggar Museum and work back to the park entrance at Highway 11. Parking lots at Jaggar Museum, Steam Vents, Kilauea Visitor Center and Volcano House will also be resurfaced.

One lane of traffic will remain open with 15-minute delays expected Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pavement also will be redone on the first two miles of Mauna Loa Road, including roadways within Tree Molds and Kipukapuaulu picnic area.

Grant will aid oha wai plant

KAILUA-KONA » A Big Island coalition is trying to propagate one of the world's rarest plants, which had been deemed extinct until it was discovered last summer.

The Kohala Watershed Partnership received a $7,550 grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Recovery Branch to protect and restore the endangered plant species Clermontia peleana singuliflora, known as oha wai, West Hawaii Today reported Friday.

A Hawaii island representative of the Nature Conservancy rediscovered the plant last summer in a North Kohala upland forest.






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