About Town 1-11-14


McDaniel recognized by committee

The Kona Crime Prevention Committee recognized Officer Nicholas McDaniel as “Officer of the Month” for January during a luncheon ceremony Wednesday at Huggo’s restaurant in Kailua-Kona.

McDan-iel was honored for leading the Kona District in the number of arrests of impaired drivers in 2013. In nomination papers, Sergeant Grad Elarionoff said McDaniel made 10 percent of the DUI arrests for the Kona District, with his C Watch responsible for half of them. He credited McDaniel with motivating the co-workers on his watch.

Elarionoff noted that McDaniel didn’t limit his observations to drivers under the influence of alcohol. In September, while working a DUI roadblock, McDaniel observed methamphetamine in two separate vehicles, resulting in the arrests of three individuals and the recovery of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, a shotgun and ammunition. Elarionoff pointed out that islandwide fatalities were down significantly in 2013, as were fatalities involving drugs, alcohol or both. While he acknowledged there is no way to directly link the improved statistics to Officer McDaniel’s efforts, he said “we all can agree that without enforcement, these lowered statistical numbers would increase.”

As “Officer of the Month,” McDaniel is eligible to become “Officer of the Year.”

The Kona Crime Prevention Committee is an organization that encourages community involvement in aiding and supporting police in West Hawaii.

Vegetarians meeting Tuesday

Kona Vegetarian Society will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Chabad of the Big Island, No. 323 in Pottery Terrace, 75-5995 Kuakini Highway, Kailua-Kona. Attendees will discuss “facts doctors will not tell you about cancer, diabetes and heart disease.”

For more information, call Martin at 327-0354.

Prostate cancer group meets Wednesday

The Prostate Cancer Information and Support Group meets at noon Wednesday at King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel’s pool bar. Newly diagnosed people, survivors and their caregivers are welcome to attend. There are no fees or dues.

Deadline to enroll in stewardship program extended to Feb. 7

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service has extended the deadline for new enrollments in the Conservation Stewardship Program for fiscal year 2014. Producers interested in participating in the program can submit applications to the service through Feb. 7.

“Extending the enrollment deadline will make it possible for more farmers, ranchers and forest landowners to apply for this important Farm Bill conservation program,” NRCS Chief Jason Weller said. “Through their conservation actions, these good stewards are ensuring that their operations are more productive and sustainable over the long run and CSP can help them take their operations to the next level of natural resource management.”

The program emphasizes conservation performance — producers earn higher payments for higher performance. In the Conservation Stewardship Program, producers install conservation enhancements to make positive changes in soil quality, soil erosion, water quality, water quantity, air quality, plant resources, animal resources and energy use.

Eligible landowners and operators can enroll in the program through Feb. 7 to be eligible during fiscal 2014. While local NRCS offices accept program applications year round, it evaluates applications during announced ranking periods.

A program self-screening checklist is available to help producers determine if the program is suitable for their operation. The checklist highlights basic information about program eligibility requirements, stewardship threshold requirements and payment types.

Learn more about the program by visiting the NRCS website or any local USDA service center.

Tax preparation help available

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is available free to taxpayers with low and moderate income, with special attention to those 60 and older. Through a care of trained volunteers, AARP Tax-Aide has helped low- to moderate-income individuals for more than 40 years. AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is offered in cooperation with the IRS.

West Hawaii has three sites offering service beginning Feb. 4 through April 11. Hale Halawai, located at 75-5600 Alii Drive in Kailua-Kona, is open on a walk-in basis from 8 a.m. to noon Thursdays beginning Feb. 6; Yano Hall, located at 82-6156 Mamalahoa Highway in Captain Cook, is open on a walk-in basis form 9 a.m. to noon Wednesdays beginning Feb. 5; and Catholic Charities, located at 73-5618 Maiau St., Suite B201, Kamuna Center (mauka of Costco), is open from noon to 4 p.m. Tuesdays beginning Feb. 4. For an appointment at the Catholic Charities site call 938-8968.

Iuta graduates from basic training

Air Force Airman Jasmine K. Iuta has graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

Iuta is the daughter of Dannielle and George Iuta of Hilo.

She is a 2013 graduate of Waiakea High School.

Kobayashi completes Guard basic training

Air National Guard Airman 1st Class Lawson J. Kobayashi has graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

Kobayashi is the son of Rose and Lawrence Kobayashi of Hilo.

He is a 2013 graduate of Kamehameha Schools, Honolulu.