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State roundup for June 14

Group receives farmworker aid

HONOLULU (AP) — A Maui organization is getting more than $300,000 in federal money to help migrant and seasonal farmworkers.

The U.S. Department of Labor on Wednesday announced $9 million in grants to seven organizations through the National Farmworkers Jobs Program.

Maui Economic Opportunity Inc. is one of the organizations expected to use the money to help farmworkers upgrade their agricultural job skills or learn new skills in industries that offer higher wages and more stable employment.

Department of Labor Acting Secretary Seth Harris says the grants will open up new opportunities for seasonal or temporary workers to find long-term jobs.

Hawaiian petrel study published

HONOLULU (AP) — Researchers say they’ve documented changes in the foraging habits of Hawaiian petrels.

A study recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences examined the bone chemistry of modern Hawaiian petrels and sub fossils as old as 4,000 years.

The bones indicated older birds ate a diet of relatively large prey high on the food chain. Birds less than a century old ate smaller fish, squid, and other prey lower on the food chain.

American Bird Conservancy Vice President George Wallace said in a statement Wednesday the study highlights the need for more research on what the shift means for the Hawaiian petrel, other seabirds and marine food webs.

The study was conducted by researchers from Michigan State University, the Smithsonian Institution and eight other organizations.

Microsoft opens first isle store

HONOLULU (AP) — Hundreds gathered inside Honolulu’s Ala Moana Center for Thursday’s 11 a.m. grand opening of Hawaii’s first Microsoft store.

Some showed up as early as Wednesday at 10 p.m.

Microsoft had promised the first 2,500 people in line free tickets to an evening concert at Kakaako Waterfront park.

The first 200 will get wristbands to a meet-and-greet with music group Neon Trees, which will be performing at the show with Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.


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