Monday, April 27, 2015         

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For articles before August 3, 2011, see the Free Archives »

Question: I am one of thousands who drive the H-1 freeway to work and back every day. Is there a specific time the ZipperLane should be opened?

Q: Why don't we have any effort to educate bicycle riders and pedestrians out at night to please wear reflective materials and obey the law by having lights and reflectors on their bicycles?

Q: Could you find out why our city and county workers do not have to follow any safety or environmental laws when doing work on our roads? Are they being fined?

Question: One lane on Ala Moana Boulevard, from the Ala Moana Center bus stop to Piikoi Street and up Piikoi to the first light, is coned off and closed all day, used as parking for builders of condos and stores in the shopping center.

Question: I wonder, are we getting the actual amount of gasoline that we are paying for at service stations?

Question: What are the current driver's license renewal requirements for elderly drivers in Hawaii? It seems as though I am reading about more and more incidents of people crashing through storefronts, almost always (if not always) an elderly driver.

Q: Is it considered distracted driving in Hawaii for a driver to be drinking a soda or eating a cookie while driving? Is it against the law to use a hand-held GPS (Global Positioning System) device while driving? What about the new Apple Watch? Is it going to be an issue here?

Question: I live in Alii Shores in Kaneohe. At 2:15 a.m. Monday, March 23, the city brought in a truck and took a large tree down on Nahiku Street. The tree was on land owned by the city.

Question: I watched the (Honolulu) Fire Department helicopter make many water drops on the brush fire behind the University of Hawaii and up to Waahila Ridge recently. I am curious: Where did they refill their water bucket each time? How fortunate we are to have our Fire Department!

Question: Why is the Board of Water Supply going around my neighborhood in Aiea -- and in front of my property -- spraying with bright blue paint "no BWS" and all these arrows, about 6 inches high?

Question: Who runs the parking lot at Hanauma Bay? I recently took friends visiting from the mainland there, and after settling in on the beach, we realized the kids had forgotten some things at home. I live close by, so I left to get them.

QUESTION: A friend who lives in Palolo Valley has noticed huge amounts of dirt being thrown over a ledge on Maunalani Heights beginning last month. This seems to be in the area between a private home and Maunalani Nursing Center.

Q: Many of us are wondering: whatever happened to our beloved Hee Hing restaurant? We all celebrated special occasions there each year and when they closed for renovations, we waited eagerly for its reopening. They were slated to reopen last fall and to this date, we have no idea what's going on.

Question: I mailed two federal tax returns separately to Ogden, Utah, each via Certified Mail.

Question: Is inheritance taxable? How would you report it? What is an inheritance tax?

Question: Is there a timeline or schedule as to when the rail construction will be finished in the Wai­pahu/ Pearl City area? I travel between Ewa and Pearl City during the course of my workday, and I'm at the screaming stage due to the construction, lane closures and traffic delays.

Q: What are they building in the McKinley High School athletic field and adjoining empty lot at Pensacola and Kapiolani? • Mahalo to a Manoa resident

Q: Is it really critical and essential that the three trees beside St. Louis Drive be cut down now? Why is it important to leave a bare and bleak hillside with rocks now tumbling into the stream and dirt eroding with no trees whatsoever? • Community Partnership • Mahalo to couple

Question: I plan to store my motorcycle and not drive on public roads. It is currently registered (2015 year) with the city. How do I surrender my single license plate?

Question: Recently a policeman stopped my granddaughter's boyfriend, saying he couldn't ride his moped on Kalanianaole Highway in East Honolulu next to the sidewalk, inside the white line. I thought the white line indicated it was a bicycle lane.

Question: I no longer am able to sew. I have a lot of high-quality material I would like to donate to a group that could make good use of it. Are there such groups in Hawaii?

Carpenter bees bore a hole in a roof beam, and as soon as that hole is "cemented" closed by us or an exterminator service, the bees bore another hole. At this moment the bees are winning this war! Can anyone help us? • Isn't the Honolulu Zoo in an area in danger of tsunami and storms? • Mahalo to an unknown gentleman

Please alert senior citizens applying for a replacement Social Security card or renewing their passport online to be sure to scroll down to official government websites and not on fraudulent sites listed first. • Reporting Fraud • Mahalo to two good Samaritans

Question: Since the city repaved Kalalea Street in January, drivers have had a problem with the signal at the intersection of Kalalea and Hawaii Kai Drive.

Question: In cleaning out my garage, I found several sets of license plates that date back at least 20 years. Do I need to return them to the city, can I throw them away or can I sell them at the swap meet?

Question: I live in Hawaii Kai and constantly see full-size ladder firetrucks going along on ambulance calls.

Q: Why can't we use up the bags that we bought under the current rules, showing that we bought them prior to the rules change? I have a small business that will be out a couple thousand dollars just on bags.

Q: Would you please find out why and when did the City and County of Honolulu start to charge/include an additional fee called a "beautification fee" of $7 to register our cars?

Question: I was at the Manoa post office recently to mail a small packet to Canada that required a customs form, which I had filled out.

Question: Last year, Mayor Kirk Caldwell approved Bill 52, regarding the removal of hazardous property. What do residents need to do to have one of their neighbors cited in relation to this bill?

Question: I was eating dinner as a helicopter nearby flew over the Stairway to Heaven searching for a missing hiker, and I got to thinking: The military has a number of heat-seeking devices, which might be useful in such search and rescue missions.

Q: Many of us now recycle plastic bags from the markets for trash disposal. Will the ban on plastic bags in July mean these bags can't be used for trash also? • Q: In case of an accident and I render aid to the victim and the victim dies, will I be held responsible and sued?

Q: Out of the many branch libraries in the Hawaii State Public Library System, which one is the busiest in terms of books and other items loaned out? (P.S. The personnel at all the branches I visit are all very pleasant and helpful.)

Question: How and where may I obtain a death certificate of a person to whom I wasn't married, was not of blood relationship, but was lovingly dedicated to, including buying a condo jointly. My partner died in 2013.

Question: Why are the kiawe trees dying along the Leeward Coast? Several weeks ago I noticed the branches/leaves on the trees on the ocean side of Farrington Highway appeared to be drying up/dying and now have spread to cover entire trees.

The Kailua post office recently changed the “will call” mail pickup to only 15 minutes a day from 8:45 to 9 a.m. during the week and one hour on Sun- day.

Q: Is it possible for HECO to send text alerts during outages to customers with cellphones so we are not literally kept in the dark about what is going on?

Q: I am a regular commuter along the Pearl Harbor bike path. Although signs clearly say, "no motorized vehicles," mopeds run up and down the path. Can anyone please take the initiative to clean up this pathway and make it a pleasant biking/walking/jogging trail for families?

Question: Why is it taking so long to upgrade and refurbish Kanewai Community Park and playground? It's been approximately two years since they closed the park.

Question: Can you give us more information about the "Obama phones" -- free cellphones given out by cellphone companies? I filled out an application from Bluebird Wireless, emailed it in two months ago and got no reply. Are there companies in Hawaii where I can walk in and get a phone?

Question: In 2011 I remember reading about a dispute over the front gate of Duane "Dog" Chapman's estate in Portlock as to the height and signage on the gate.

Q: I have heard there are labyrinths in Hawaii, including at the University of Hawaii-Manoa. Can you tell me where they are and why they were built? A: The Labyrinth Society lists 22 in Hawaii, including "portable" ones.

Q: We have not noticed any roadwork going on, no resurfacing, repaving or repairs on Beretania Street, from University Avenue to South Street. Nothing has been done and the road is awful. What about finishing Beretania -- or even starting work on it?

Question: Who did Neil Abercrombie pardon before leaving as governor? Answer: During his four-year term, the former governor issued pardons to 83 people, most of them in his last year in office.

Question: In early February someone spilled what seemed to be at least five gallons of white paint on Manoa Road just before the tip of Triangle Park.

Question: Can you find out why the Makapuu Trail parking lot gate was closed and locked two out of the three days over the Presidents Day holiday weekend? Only on Presidents Day, Monday, was the parking accessible.

QUESTION: I'm a senior. I don't have a computer. I don't have the instruction book for the 1040A or Schedule A and B that I need to begin my income taxes. I can't find any place on this island that has the booklets or forms for us to use.

Question: I am a retired serviceman who is rated 100 percent disabled by the Veterans Administration. I had to go to the federal building, but found there are no disabled parking stalls assigned there. Why?

Question: When is the completion date for the new airport rental car building? What is the total cost to taxpayers for the work going on at Honolulu Airport?

Question: Are there any rules/ordinances regarding boats and cars parked on streets, especially in residential areas? We live in Mililani, and both sides of the street are full of cars and boats. It's hard to drive in and out of a two-lane road.

Question: In regards to news that the Makapuu Trail will be closed for repair: It will take up to six months (probably longer). Repaving, adding seating areas, better lookout areas, etc., are all good. But why can't there be any money put aside to add some basic needs, like portable toilets, or some way to have some water available for people to have?

Q: Can you identify and stop who in the state Department of Public Safety is abusing the Nixle emergency system by sending out announcements like the one on Feb. 4, "Man arrested by state sheriffs for stealing restaurant tip jar?"

Q: I have an egg allergy that prevents me from getting the normal flu vaccine, which is grown in eggs. A new vaccine that doesn't use eggs, called Flublok, has been available for over a year, but I can't find anyone who offers it?

Question: Sunset Memorial Cemetery in Pearl City is in deplorable condition. Grass is so high it's difficult to locate graves. Who is responsible for the upkeep of that cemetery? We need to know! (Two complaints received.)

Question: I filed my Real Property Tax Exemption Claim for Alternative Energy Improvements (my photovoltaic system) last month.

Question: Some neighbors and I would like to petition for a four-way stop at Kainalu Drive and Mookua Street in Kailua. It is the only through street from Kalaheo Avenue to Maluniu Street, therefore is very busy.

Q: I saw an ABC news report that said law enforcement officers in Los Angeles and across the nation were clamping down on people illegally using disabled parking placards with fines of hundreds or thousands of dollars. What is Honolulu doing to enforce this law?

Q: I was called for jury duty and a number of people did not show up. The judge said something about issuing a bench warrant. What is this and what is the penalty for not reporting for jury duty? Is it different for state and federal courts?

Question: If the city is collecting trash in gray bins to burn at HPOWER, which saves money, why are we putting newspapers and cardboard into the blue recycle bins, when recycled refuse costs the taxpayers money to ship off island?

Question: I frequently paddle my one-person canoe from Magic Island to the Diamond Head buoy and back.

Question: Visitors from the mainland keep asking me why the bridge in Nanakuli is blocked off. They say it is such a nice bridge and it's a shame not to let the local people use it.

Question: The restrooms at Kaiaka Bay Beach Park have been boarded up for months. Any clue as to when they will reopen?

Q: I am usually asked to renew the registration of my alarm about October each year. What has happened to the alarm registration process and procedures? Do I need to do anything? • Q: Where can we drop off old telephone books this year to be recycled?

Question: I'm a cancer physician. In my last practice in California, I was accustomed to filling out paperwork for appropriate patients to acquire medical cannabis. I wished to continue that practice here.

Question: How is the University of Hawaii Manoa's College Hill, the large house near the Manoa campus that was previously used as the UH president's residence, used now? I don't think it's been used as the president's residence since 2009.

Question: How is it that a TSA agent at the airport can take your personal property and keep it forever?

Question: Would you explain to the many drivers who use Waialae Avenue in Kaimuki every day, why after months and months of repaving work and completion dates extended multiple times, when the road was finally repaved and a delight to drive on again, why it is now being torn up again by Hawaii Gas?

Q: What can a homeowner/resident legally do to address mess-making animals on your property? Is it legal to trap or poison? How about random audio bursts that scare off the birds? • Q: How should a widow be addressed: Ms. or Mrs.?

Question: The traffic signal at University Avenue and Coyne Street in Moiliili is still not operating. Will it be turned on soon? In October, after installation of the lights was completed months earlier, you said the city was awaiting Hawaiian Electric Co. to complete its work. No target date was given other than before the cycle track was completed, by November or December.

Question: Are the "Live Aloha" bumper stickers still available? If so, can you tell me how I can get them?

Question: State law prohibits sales and consumption of liquor on public streets, but the city allows it during lots of block parties in Chinatown.

Last year signs were posted on property line walls of Wilhelmina Rise stating "Private Parking" for the strip of land between the street and walls. The city's Code Enforcement Branch, the inspector said the city cannot enforce whether an owner displays such a sign. Is this true?

Q: Is it true that both the items in the blue bin and the trash bin at Honolulu Airport all end up at the landfill? Isn't that a little deceiving? Many folks assume they are doing a good thing by separating their recyclables from the trash. • Going Green events for January • Mahalo for regular cleanup

Question: While turning left on King Street into the driveway of a business, I paid extra special attention to watching my rearview mirror for any bicyclists in the new dedicated bike lane.

Question: I drive on the H-2 freeway a lot and sometimes see vehicles with U.S. government license plates driving recklessly or speeding. Whom do I call to report them? I know whom to call for state or city vehicles but not for federal vehicles.

Question: A neighbor continually feeds animals in the morning. I see mongooses and other animals feeding, besides birds. There is a lot of bird poop in the driveway and garage area. Isn't there a law against that?

The tap water in Maunawili has begun to have a strong chemical taste, which it never had before. Is this a temporary issue or the new normal? • Where can I go for a state ID card? Can you provide any information and office times? • Mahalo to honest young man for turning in handbag

Question: How is it that elected state politicians are allowed to practice nepotism in the workplace? Legislators continue to have relatives on their payroll.

Question: I have had to call the unemployment claims office at the state Department of Labor ever since I got laid off. Two numbers are provided -- 586-8970 and 586-8971 -- but it is nearly impossible to speak to someone, despite multiple attempts.

Question: I'm a part-time coin collector, and for quite a while I've noticed there are no quarters, nickles or dimes dated 1964 or earlier. Have they been removed from circulation?

Question: A private waste company picks up our garbage but leaves liquid waste on the street adjacent to a storm drain. This is very evident by the oily, smelly residue on the street.

QUESTION: Nearly every day at approximately 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Moanalua Recreation Center, the Freeway Service Patrol is there with at least two tow trucks. They cone off the entire area beneath the overpass and sit on their lawn chairs.

QUESTION: I found a "no parking" sign fronting the side lawn at my address and other properties throughout Mariners Cove in Hawaii Kai the beginning of November. I called the company "Green Thumb" named on the sign and was told this was for a city project to plant trees.

Question: In August 2013 the Hawaii Kai Marina Community Association contractor dumped a load of dredge material on H-1, closing the westbound freeway for hours.

Question: What is the status of the project to improve the lane markings on the H-1 in the Kaimuki area?

The Hawaii Automobile Dealers Association says "Hawaii's needlessly cumbersome paper processing" system is behind delays in dealers obtaining motor vehicle registrations and metal number plates for new car buyers.

Question: Has anyone asked about a delay in receiving license plates for a new vehicle? I bought mine July 1 and still haven't received my plates. The temporary plate is dated "8-31."

Question: Auwe to the response Oahu Transit Services gave Kokua Line about a bus not arriving as scheduled that "there is no guarantee that any bus will arrive as scheduled.

Question: Could you explain a "Higher Fines Zone"? How much are the tickets?

Question: What gives McDonald's at Waialae and Palolo the right to use Waialae Avenue as a loading lane for drivers waiting to enter its drive-thru and thus block a lane of Ewa-bound moving traffic on Waialae Avenue? This happens at certain times of day, not all day or all night.

Question: The Kaneaki Heiau in Makaha is one of the most interesting and well-restored heiau on Oahu. It had a wonderful carved image of Ku, the god of war. Also a fascinating history.

Question: The sprinkler at a house in our Waikele neighborhood has been running 24/7 for at least 10 days. The owners only spend a few weeks a year here and are currently in Japan. We don't know how the sprinkler went on.

Question: I noted on the screen at the Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre that the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations has donated $10,000 to the Museum Business Council. What is the rationale or connection for the state doing so? Who made the decision? Isn't the state supposed to be hands-off in giving money to private, profit-making entities?

Question: I know that you have published a few articles about the new bike lane on King Street, and I think we are just going to have to see how it works out during the "pilot program" period. However, one of my main concerns now is parking. What parking is allowed on the mauka side of King Street?

Question: What is the speed limit on the rehabilitated stretch of the H-1 freeway, between Punahou Street and Likelike Highway?

Question: About 8:45 a.m. one day, my neighbor began flying his drone over houses and in the park near my house. This continued through our breakfast with a sound that mimics a hundred mosquitos. About 11 a.m., I went into my backyard and found the drone flying above me.

Question: I was exiting Kaiser's Honolulu Clinic onto South King Street recently and looked both ways as we automobile drivers have the sidewalk, green bike lane and at least two more lanes to view before proceeding safely.

Question: In March, we drove to the Waialae Iki V Community Association gated community on Laukahi Street and expected polite clearance to proceed on the public access to Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail, a state Na Ala Hele trail.

Question: Since we elected a new governor, I'd like to know: What are the salaries of the governor and lieutenant governor? Does the governor have a cook and housekeeper?

Question: Every morning I drive down Kai­nalu Avenue in Kai­lua, past the intersection by the fire station/police complex, past Kai­lua Intermediate School and on into Enchanted Lake. Elementary and middle school students I see riding bikes without helmets far outnumber those who wear helmets.

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