State roundup for April 29
Person of interest in custody in woman’s death
KAPAA, Hawaii (AP) — Kauai police say they have taken a woman’s roommate into custody after finding her body at a Kapaa condominium.
In a press release Saturday, police said the investigation is still in its early stages, but detectives have reason to suspect foul play in the death of a 21-year-old woman whose body was found Friday afternoon. They say they wanted to question the roommate about her death.
Assistant Chief of the Investigative Services Bureau Roy Asher said police have a person of interest in custody in the case.
An autopsy is set for Monday. Police haven’t released the identities of the woman or her roommate.
Hawaii unfunded liability bills pass major hurdle
HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii lawmakers are moving forward with proposals to help the state grapple with growing unfunded liabilities for state employee and retiree benefits.
Lawmakers in negotiating committees advanced the measures Friday, which still need to pass the full House and Senate.
One proposal creates a timetable to allow the state to pay down the liabilities entirely by 2018.
Hawaii Finance Director Kalbert Young says if the proposal were to pass, it would be a national landmark bill.
Young opposes the second measure, which creates a captive insurance company to manage risk. He says it would be ineffective.
Earlier this week, lawmakers decided to include more than $217 million over the next two years in their final state budget proposal to help draw down unfunded liabilities.
Ewa Beach group prepares for storms, tsunamis
HONOLULU (AP) — The National Weather Service plans to officially designate Ewa Beach as a community that’s prepared for storms and tsunamis.
The west Oahu community will be recognized as StormReady and TsunamiReady during a ceremony on Saturday.
The weather service’s Honolulu office says a grassroots group spearheaded a campaign to prepare Ewa Beach to respond to these natural hazards.
Communities become StormReady with steps like developing hazardous weather operations plans and holding annual weather safety talks.
They become TsunamiReady by holding emergency exercises and developing a formal tsunami plan.
Members of the Ewa Emergency Preparedness Committee will attend this weekend’s ceremony.
Maj. Gen. Darryll Wong of the Hawaii National Guard will also be there along with state civil defense, Oahu emergency management and National Weather Service officials.
Detainee caught who fled courtroom hallway
HONOLULU (AP) — Department of Public Safety officials say a shackled detainee broke away from custody in District Court in Honolulu and hid in a stairwell before being caught.
Hawaii News Now reports that Elloise Ysaol was with five other female detainees who were being moved into a courtroom on Thursday afternoon. Public Safety officials say the detainees were in a hallway in a secured area between the holding cells and courtrooms when Ysaol bolted into an emergency exit.
Sheriff’s deputies immediately secured the building and the woman was found in a stairwell about a half-hour later. She was in custody after being arrested overnight in connection with a car break-in.
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