Press Releases

November 10, 2014

SENATOR HIRONO PRAISES AWARDING OF PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM TO HAWAII CONGRESSWOMAN PATSY T. MINK

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono praised today's announcement that President Barack Obama has posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Hawaii Congresswoman Patsy T. Mink. Among Congresswoman Mink's numerous accomplishments during her decades of public service, she is most widely known for being one of the principal authors of Title IX, the federal law that protects students from gender discrimination in federally supported education programs and activities. Signed int… Continue Reading


November 10, 2014

SENATOR HIRONO APPLAUDS ANNOUNCEMENT OF 10-YEAR VISAS BETWEEN THE U.S. AND CHINA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today applauded President Obama's announcement that the U.S. and China have agreed to mutually extend the validity period for travel visas between the two countries. Beginning this November 12, the maximum validity of short-term tourist and business visas will increase from one to ten years, and the maximum validity of student and exchange visas will increase from one to five years. In July 2013, Senator Hirono led a bipartisan letter to urge Secretary… Continue Reading


October 31, 2014

SENATOR HIRONO STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF ROBERT RICHARDS MIDKIFF

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement on the passing of Hawaii business leader and philanthropist, Robert Richards Midkiff. "I am saddened to learn of the passing of my longtime friend, Bob Midkiff. Bob was a true champion for early education in Hawaii. He and I worked together on this key issue because we both recognized that a sound education, starting from preschool, lays the foundation for a child's success in school and in life. "With the passing of Bob Midki… Continue Reading


October 29, 2014

U.S. POSTAL SERVICE UNVEILS PUNA LAVA FLOW CONTINGENCY PLANS

The United States Postal Service issued the following update for Hawaii Island residents affected by the lava flow: The Pahoa Post Office will remain open for business as long as it can operate without jeopardizing the safety or security of our postal employees, our customers and the mail. U.S. Postal Service (USPS) management is in close contact with Hawaii County civil defense authorities and managers of potentially affected Hawaii island Post Offices. Contingency plans are being guided by … Continue Reading


October 22, 2014

SBA OFFERS DISASTER ASSISTANCE TO HAWAII RESIDENTS AND BUSINESSES AFFECTED BY TROPICAL STORM ISELLE

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Low-interest federal disaster loans are available to Hawaii residents and business owners affected by Tropical Storm Iselle that occurred August 7 - 9, 2014, U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet announced today. SBA acted under its own authority to declare a disaster following the October 16 denial of the state's appeal for a major disaster declaration. The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in Hawaii County. "The … Continue Reading


October 17, 2014

HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS: BE AWARE, ALERT AND READY

With Hurricane Ana bearing down on the Hawaiian Islands, I urge everyone to remain alert to the weather conditions and be prepared for potentially severe weather. While Hurricane Ana is expected to remain south of the main Hawaiian Islands, it still is a dangerous tropical storm which will bring heavy rains and possible thunderstorms, strong winds and high surf. Everyone must stay vigilant as we receive regular updates on the storm. Below are safety guidelines from the National Oceanic and At… Continue Reading


October 16, 2014

HIRONO CONVENES SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE HEARING TO STRENGTHEN COLLABORATION BETWEEN CIVILIAN AND MILITARY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SERVICE PROVIDERS

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today chaired a Senate Judiciary Committee field hearing titled, "Accessing Support: How the Violence Against Women Act Serves Hawaii Military Families Experiencing Domestic Violence." The hearing focused on how to best coordinate and utilize resources and services for military families experiencing intimate partner abuse. The hearing coincides with "Domestic Violence Awareness Month" and the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). At the fi… Continue Reading


October 10, 2014

HIRONO ANNOUNCES MORE THAN $3.5 MILLION IN GRANTS TO SUPPORT RESEARCH AT UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today announced more than $3.5 million in grant awards to the University of Hawaii (UH) for the UH Sea Grant College Program and for Asia-Pacific research and scholarships. The UH Sea Grant College Program has received more than $1.6 million in federal support from the U.S. Department of Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for research and programming to understand the effects of climate change on coral reefs and oceans, groundwate… Continue Reading


September 30, 2014

HIRONO, SCHATZ ANNOUNCE OVER $3 MILLION FOR NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS IN HAWAII

HONOLULU - Senators Mazie K. Hirono and Brian Schatz today announced U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) grants totaling $3,110,862 to seven Hawaii organizations to support programs that promote asset building, financial literacy and child care for indigenous communities. "This funding allows non-profit organizations to provide needed services to indigenous families," said Senator Hirono, who shared today's announcement with conferees at the 13th Annual Council for Native Hawaiia… Continue Reading


September 30, 2014

RELEASE: HIRONO, SCHATZ ANNOUNCE $3 MILLION FOR VETERAN HOMELESSNESS RELIEF

HONOLULU - Senators Mazie K. Hirono and Brian Schatz today announced $3 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to help end veteran homelessness in Hawaii. "Safe, affordable housing is a basic necessity. Finding and keeping a job, supporting a family, and living a secure life without a place to call home is a major challenge for too many of our Hawaii veterans. We must do better for our veterans in need," said Senator Hirono, member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Co… Continue Reading


September 29, 2014

HIRONO ANNOUNCES NEARLY $10 MILLION FOR COMMUNITY COLLEGE CAREER TRAINING

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today announced the U.S. Department of Labor has awarded nearly $10 million in grant funding to seven community colleges in Hawaii as part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAA C3T) initiative. This is the fourth and final installment of the $2 billion initiative aimed at creating and supporting new job training partnerships between community colleges, local businesses, and state workforce training systems. "By the time … Continue Reading


September 25, 2014

HIRONO APPLAUDS PRESIDENT OBAMA’S EXPANSION OF PACIFIC REMOTE ISLAND MARINE NATIONAL MONUMENT

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement applauding President Barack Obama's proclamation to significantly expand the Pacific Remote Island Marine National Monument. The expansion will create the largest marine reserve in the world. The President's directive aims to protect close to 490,000 square miles from overfishing and other unsustainable practices. "President Obama's executive order to protect a greater expanse of the Pacific Remote Island Area illustrates his … Continue Reading


September 24, 2014

HIRONO SUPPORTS BILL TO BOOST RESOURCES FOR COASTAL COMMUNITIES IN HAWAII

Last week, Senator Mazie K. Hirono co-sponsored the Digital Coast Act, which will authorize the next phase in coastal mapping at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Coastal mapping provides current data and training to enable coastal communities to make critical planning decisions and better protect and sustain natural resources. "Protecting Hawaii's coastal areas is critical to our environment and economy," said Hirono. "The Digital Coast Act will allow NOAA to continue… Continue Reading


September 22, 2014

HIRONO APPLAUDS NOMINATION OF ADMIRAL HARRIS TO COMMANDER OF U.S. FORCES IN THE PACIFIC

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement on the nomination of Admiral Harry Harris to the post of Commander of the United States Pacific Command. "Admiral Harris' distinguished career of service to our country and strong leadership displayed in his current role as commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet demonstrates that he will excel in his new role as Pacific Commander. As a member of the Senate Armed Services Co… Continue Reading


September 18, 2014

HIRONO STATEMENT ON AUTHORIZATION TO TRAIN AND EQUIP SYRIANS TO FIGHT ISIL

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today voted in favor of a stopgap spending bill to fund the government through December 11th, which includes authorization for the Obama Administration to train and equip moderate Syrians to fight against ISIL. Hirono issued the following statement: "The President, Secretary Hagel, and Chairman Dempsey have made a strong case regarding the threat ISIL presents to the Middle East, Europe, and our nation. I share many Americans' concerns about ISIL's gro… Continue Reading


September 17, 2014

HIRONO, SCHATZ VOTE TO CONFIRM DEBRA WADA TO DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE LEADERSHIP POSITION

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono and Brian Schatz voted today to confirm Debra Wada's nomination to be Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs at the Department of Defense (DoD). Wada was confirmed unanimously by voice vote. "I look forward to working with someone who is from and understands Hawaii in this role at the Department of Defense," said Hirono. "Debra's extensive national defense background and D.C experience has made her an integral part of the com… Continue Reading


September 15, 2014

SCHATZ, HIRONO, GABBARD ANNOUNCE MORE THAN $1 MILLION FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS IN HAWAII

Washington, DC - Today, U.S. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), and Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) announced more than $1 million in federal funding for programs aimed to incentivize and further generate economic growth, innovation and entrepreneurship. "Investing in programs that spur innovation and boost startup businesses is one of the best ways to create jobs," Senator Schatz said. "These investments will give UH and state agencies the resources to develop b… Continue Reading


September 11, 2014

HIRONO, SCHATZ ANNOUNCE MORE THAN $20 MILLION FOR NATIVE HAWAIIAN EDUCATION

Washington, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono and Brian Schatz today announced grants to programs and institutions of higher education that serve Native Hawaiian communities, from preschool through college and career training. Projects will support vital needs such as kindergarten readiness; Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education; Native Hawaiian culture and language; and college success. "Congratulations to the grantees who are working to prepare Native Hawaiian students a… Continue Reading


September 10, 2014

HIRONO, SCHATZ ANNOUNCE MORE THAN $1 MILLION FOR PUPUKEA MAUKA WATERSHED PROJECT

Washington, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono and Brian Schatz today announced Hawaii will receive more than $1 million for the Pupukea Mauka Watershed and Habitat Protection Project. This funding will help foster partnerships between the state government and private landowners or conservation groups to protect the habitats of threatened wildlife. "The Pupukea Mauka Watershed and Habitat Protection Project is an example of the partnership that is needed to protect the habitat of Hawaii's endanger… Continue Reading


September 04, 2014

HIRONO URGES ELIGIBLE SMALL BUSINESSES HURT BY TROPICAL STORM ISELLE TO APPLY FOR SBA EMERGENCY LOANS

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono is urging eligible small, nonfarm businesses in Hawaii County that suffered significant economic damage due to Tropical Storm Iselle to apply for newly announced federal emergency loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). This SBA support follows today's announcement from U.S. Department of Agriculture that provides access to emergency loans for affected area farmers. "Tropical Storm Iselle caused extensive damage to Hawaii Island companies. Num… Continue Reading

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