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Kapaa woman sentenced in child sexual abuse case

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) - A 33-year-old Kapaa woman has been sentenced to 20 years in prison in a child sexual abuse case.

The Garden Island reports Jean Agonoy Paleracio pleaded no contest to videotaping her sexual acts with a child.

Paleracio, a former worker with the Kauai Economic Opportunity Early Learning Center, was sentenced Wednesday in 5th Circuit Court.

Judge Kathleen Watanabe said Paleracio took "ultimate advantage of a young boy." The victim was 11 years old.

Paleracio pleaded no contest to first-degree sexual assault and first-degree promotion of child abuse, and eight other felony charges were dismissed in December.

Prosecutors say Paleracio engaged in sexual activity with a minor male between May 1, 2009, and Sept. 1, 2010. Prosecutor Lisa Arin says the child is probably scarred for life.

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Downtown Lihue envisioned as bike-friendly campus

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) - Kauai County officials have revealed plans to overhaul the Lihue Civic Center into a campus with less traffic and more offices.

Their goal is to turn the busy downtown area into a transportation and business hub.

The county intends to move bus services from Hardy Street to Eiwa Street and to make Eiwa a one-way street. The Garden Island reported Wednesday that planners say the move will help open the area to pedestrians and cyclists.

The plans also include converting the vacant Big Save supermarket building into offices for several county departments.

County officials say about $300,000 has been set aside for work on Eiwa Street. The county can seek matching federal funds for road work. Construction could begin this summer.

Nominees Sought for 2014 Hawai‘i Waterman Hall of Fame

Nominees Sought for 2014 Hawai‘i Waterman Hall of Fame

The Hawai‘i Waterman Hall of Fame will induct its new class of distinguished waterman legends this summer and the public is invited to nominate worthy candidates for consideration.

The Hall of Fame nomination packet and submittal instructions are available at the Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation’s (ODKF) website, www.DukeFoundation.org. There is no fee required. Nominations are accepted throughout the year, but need to be submitted by May 30 for 2014 consideration.

With support from respected watermen in the community, ODKF established the Hawai‘i Waterman Hall of Fame four years ago to honor the accomplishments of Hawai‘i’s legendary watermen and waterwomen. The criterion for induction is:

American Red Cross Classes for May: Kauai

American Red Cross Classes for May: Kauai

Learn to save a life.

Kauai Fire Department seeks more overtime funds

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) - The Kauai Fire Department is seeking a 22 percent increase in overtime funds for the upcoming fiscal year.

The Garden Island says the fire department spent more than $1.1 million in overtime expenses during the 2013 fiscal year. Department officials are now asking for $1.4 million in overtime expenses for the 2014 fiscal year that begins July 1.

Deputy Fire Chief John Blalock said at a county Cost Control Commission meeting Monday that some of the costs are required for the county to comply with collective-bargaining agreements.

Blalock says increasing overtime costs also may be attributed to a training program for specific employees. The program is designed to increase continuity when leave is taken by ranked personnel.

The fire department is proposing a total budget of $25.5 million.

Nonprofit groups allowed to join Kauai law defense

HONOLULU (AP) - A federal judge is allowing four nonprofit organizations to join Kauai County in defending a new law regulating pesticides and genetically modified crops in court.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren granted a motion to allow Ka Makani Hoopono, the Center for Food Safety, the Pesticide Action Network North America and the Surfrider Foundation to intervene.

Syngenta Seeds, DuPont Pioneer, Agrigenetics Inc., doing business as Dow Agrosciences, and BASF Plant Sciences are seeking a permanent injunction against the law.

Earthjustice attorney Paul Achitoff's clients sought to join the case because they weren't confident the county's defense. They allege the county administration doesn't support the new law.

The Kauai County Council passed the ordinance over the veto of Mayor Bernard Carvalho, who called the measure flawed.

See "Peter Rabbit" Play at Neighbor Island Libraries Apr. 17-May 6

See "Peter Rabbit" Play at Neighbor Island Libraries Apr. 17-May 6

The Honolulu Theatre for Youth will present “Peter Rabbit and the Garden,” a special stage production of the Peter Rabbit story, at five Neighbor Island public libraries from April 17 to May 6.  The Friends of the Library of Hawaii is sponsoring these free programs.

This interactive version is designed specifically for preschoolers and will explore the fine line between curiosity and responsibility.  Peter Rabbit loves eating vegetables more than anything, but can this impulsive rabbit learn some manners before he gets into big trouble?

Catch a performance of “Peter Rabbit and the Garden” at these libraries:

•             April 17, 2 p.m. at Hilo Public Library (ph. 933-8888)

•             April 23, 2 p.m. at Wailuku Public Library (ph. 243-5766)