East Hawaii News

Emergency Declaration Extended for Puna

December 4, 2014, 12:05 PM HST
* Updated December 4, 12:25 PM
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Hawai’i County Mayor Billy Kenoi has extended the state of emergency declaration, originally put into effect on Sept. 4, for the District of Puna.

According to the updated proclamation document, posted on the Hawai’i County Civil Defense website, the extension of the declaration is necessary due to “a state of emergency continuing to exist due to the threat of imminent disaster on Hawai’i Island, District of Puna.”

The emergency declaration of Sept. 4, along with the supplementary proclamation of Oct. 16, will remain in full force and in effect for 60 more days from Dec. 3, or until further update from the Mayor’s Office.

Under the proclamation, certain laws are suspended as needed for emergency purposes. Some laws also have advanced repercussions, such a robberies, and are punishable to a greater extent.

The Major Disaster Fund also becomes activated while in a state of emergency. The fund is set aside by the state Legislature for disaster relief, which would help facilitate access to emergency resources at both the state and federal levels.

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Currently the June 27 lava flow front is about 2.5 miles from the intersection of Pahoa Village Road and Highway 130, near the Pahoa Marketplace. Advancement of the flow has remained consistent since Monday.

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Civil Defense, along with Hawaiian Volcano Observatory personnel continue to maintain close observation of the flow, to watch for changes in advancement and conditions, as well as to maintain public safety.

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