Rebate on solar water heater cut to $750
The rebate available to homeowners for installing solar water heaters has been cut to $750 from $1,000 because high demand is depleting the amount in the ratepayer-funded program, officials said yesterday.
The change was effective Monday.
Lowering the rebate will allow officials to extend the life of the program and reach more homeowners, said Ray Starling, manager for Hawaii Energy, the energy conservation program administered by Science Applications International Corp.
The $750 rebate applies to qualifying hot water systems installed by solar contractors that participate in the Hawaii Energy solar program.
Hawaii Energy, formerly operated by Hawaiian Electric Co., is now administered by SAIC under contract with the state Public Utilities Commission.
CHALLENGE ISSUED ON HAITI DONATIONS
Hawai'i-based Referentia Systems is challenging local businesses to contribute to the Haiti earthquake relief efforts by matching dollar-for-dollar donations to the Kokua Haiti Relief Fund up to $25,000.
The effort is inspired by the Austin Ventures and Entrepreneurs Foundation of Central Texas match program which will match all donations 1:1, potentially doubling Hawai'i's contribution up to $100,000.
The Entrepreneurs Foundation of Hawai'i is serving as the administrator of the Kokua Haiti Relief Fund. Tax-exempt donations can be made online at www.KokuaHaiti.org.
Referentia is challenging local businesses to encourage their staffs through their own 1:1 match that will then be matched by the Kokua Haiti Relief Fund.
Referentia Systems Inc. is software developer of cyber security and network enterprise solutions for the Department of Defense.
HAWAI'I PACIFIC HEALTH RENEWS QUEST PACT
Hawai'i Pacific Health said it has renewed its contract to provide service to the aged, blind, disabled and other patients who receive care under the state's Quest Expanded Access program.
Hawai'i Pacific said it renewed participation with the two health plans that administer QeXA claims, Evercare and 'Ohana Health, despite low pay rates that result in financial losses.
Hawai'i Pacific said it felt it was important to remain in the QeXA program as part of its effort to provide health care access in the state. Its contract covers Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women and Children, a facility at Pali Momi, Straub Clinic and Hospital, Wilcox Memorial Hospital and the Kaua'i Medical Clinic.
FEWER VEHICLES IN STATE, REPORT SHOWS
The number of gasoline-powered vehicles in Ha-wai'i has dropped by 2.3 percent over the past year, according to the state's latest Energy Trend Data report.
It said there were 912,671 registered taxable gasoline-powered passenger vehicles at the end of January, or lower than the total at the end of January 2009.
The report also said there was a 0.5 percent decline in taxable diesel freight vehicles to 21,577. The number of registered taxable electric vehicles was 179, or 2.3 percent more than a year earlier.
UH NEEDS JUDGES FOR ANNUAL CONTEST
The University of Hawai'i is seeking volunteers to coach and judge its annual business plan competition.
Coaches are needed to advise teams that become semi-finalists on March 1.
Judges are needed to review and score business plans starting Feb. 19. The competition wraps up in late April.
To sign up, visit www.shidler.hawaii.edu/pace.
EXCISE TAX DUE DATE EARLIER THAN BEFORE
The state Department of Taxation is reminding taxpayers who make general excise tax payments that the deadline has changed to earlier in the month.
Under a law enacted last year, the deadline for monthly, quarterly and semiannual returns has changed to the 20th day of the month following the close of the tax period.
Previously, taxpayers could wait until the end of the following month to get the payments in.
The Tax Department said it had postponed implementation of the new deadlines until 2010 to allow people more time to prepare for the transition.
MANUFACTURING JOBS DECLINED LAST YEAR
The number of manufacturing jobs in Hawai'i declined by 754, or 3 percent, last year, according to a Manufacturers' News report.
The report said there were 1,196 manufacturers in Hawai'i at the end of 2009 that employed 24,157 workers. Most of these, or 9,252, were employed by food product companies.