Hawaii minimum wage to increase in stages

Gov. David Ige signed legislation June 22 raising the minimum wage for Hawaii to $18 per hour by 2028.

The Hawaii minimum wage is set to increase on Oct. 1 from $10.10 to $12.

Other increases and dates are $14, Jan. 1, 2024; $16, Jan. 1, 2026; and $18, Jan. 1, 2028.

Ige also signed a measure giving one-time tax refunds for individuals earning less than $100,000 in 2021, and couples earning less than $200,000 in 2021 – for $300 per taxpayer.


IATA raises voice on issues

The International Air Transport Association is calling for a safe rollout of 5G networks and measures by governments, “to ensure that aviation and incumbent aviation safety systems can safely co-exist with new 5G services.” IATA said on June 21, “We must not repeat the recent experience in the United States, where the rollout of C-band spectrum 5G services created enormous disruption to aviation, owing to the potential risk or interference with radio altimeters that are critical to aircraft landing and safety systems.”

IATA also called for government support to make the transport of lithium batteries safer, by developing and implementing global standards, and long-term goals to “decarbonize aviation.”

The calls came from the annual general meeting and world air transport summit in Doha.


It’s official – Camacho Ada team file candidacies

Former Gov. Felix P. Camacho and Sen. Vicente A.B Ada filed June 23 as candidates for the gubernatorial team for the Republican Party on Guam – as governor and lieutenant governor respectively.

The two have yet to reveal a detailed platform for their campaign.

The Republican filing follows that of the Democratic team of Michael F.Q. San Nicolas, and Sabrina Salas Matanane for governor and lieutenant governor respectively.

The other Democratic team of incumbents Gov. Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero and Lieutenant Gov. Joshua F. Tenorio have still to file, owing to Tenorio contracting COVID-19.

Felix P. Camacho and Sen. V. Anthony Ada filed their candidacies for governor and lieutenant governor on June 23, joined by their family members and supporters. Photo by Victor Consaga

NMI arrivals data, tourism incentives and authority relocating

Visitor arrivals for the Northern Marianas islands of Saipan, Tinian and Rota grew 1,386% in May to 6,939 visitors, compared to 467 visitors in May 2021.

Most May visitors came from South Korea, with five airlines arriving from Seoul and Busan, but the NMI received 37 visitors from Japan, 815 from Guam and 624 from the U.S. mainland.

MVA is finalizing a contract to provide airline incentives for direct flights from Tokyo-Narita three times a week, according to a June 23 release.

The Marianas Visitors Authority is moving offices to the first floor of the Gold Beach Hotel on Beach Road in Garapan and will open there on July 5. The office in Oleai – where MVA has been for decades – will close on June 27.


Yap updates

Pacific Mission Aviation repatriated five people to Yap in the Federated States of Micronesia on June 22.

The next United Airlines repatriation flight from Guam to Yap is set for July 6.

According to the Yap State government, “primary series” vaccinations are at 100% of people aged 45 and up; 83% of 18 to 44 years of age; 81% of 12 to 17 years of age; and 45% of 5 to 11 years of age – as at June 22. mbj