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In Brief | Big Island & State | 4-12-14

April 12, 2014 - 6:05am

Gunfire reported in South Kona

No one was injured following a report of gunshots fired Friday morning in Milolii.

Officers responded about 8:30 a.m. to the report of gunshots heard in the area of Lani Avenue off of Milolii Road in South Kona, said Chad Basque, commander of the Area II Criminal Investigations Section.

Officers at the scene said there were no injuries. They also noted that officers were unable to determine if the sounds were gunshots or a person hitting something against wood or a home.

Herb farm settles federal labor charges

HONOLULU — A Hawaii farm has agreed to settle a Department of Labor complaint that charged the farm underpaid its workers by hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Fat Law’s Farm, a Waipahu herb and vegetable farm, will pay workers more than $430,000 in back wages and penalties to settle the federal claim.

The settlement states the farm violated the Fair Labor Standards Act by paying employees no more than $5 per hour, by withholding overtime pay and by neglecting to keep proper employment records.

Kathryn Xian, the founder of the Pacific Alliance to Stop Slavery, said her organization became aware of abuses at the farm more than two years ago when migrant workers at the farm sought help. The Honolulu anti-human trafficking advocacy group then urged federal authorities to investigate.

Hawaii getting funds for work force training

Hawaii will receive nearly $8.7 million in federal funds for job training, including skills assessments, job-search and resume help, long-term job-training programs and apprenticeships, announced U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono.

The state Workforce Development Division operates One-Stop Centers on Oahu, Hawaii Island, Maui and Kauai, using public-private partnerships and collaborations to provide job-training services. These funds are allotted by the U.S. Department of Labor under the Workforce Investment Act.

Hawaii job-seekers can use, attend an upcoming Workforce Development Division job fair or visit Big Island Workplace Connection, a one-stop center located at 74-5565 Luhia St., Building C, Bay 4, in Kailua-Kona and 1990 Kinoole St., Suite 102, in Hilo.

For more information, call Big Island Workplace Connection at 327-4770 or 981-2860.

By local and wire sources

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