West Hawaii Today has this item on the latest regarding GMOs on the Big Island. Excerpt:

Hawaii County won’t have to go it alone in its fight to regulate genetically modified crops on the island.

The County Council, by a 6-3 vote late Wednesday, agreed to allow attorneys from national advocacy groups Earthjustice and the Center for Food Safety to assist in the county’s defense of a lawsuit filed by Hawaii Floriculture and Nursery Association and other agriculture and biotechnology groups.

Puna Councilmen Greggor Ilagan and Danny Paleka joined Hilo Councilman Dennis “Fresh” Onishi on the no votes. Onishi said special counsel isn’t needed because the lawyers can’t bring up any new issues on the appeal that haven’t already been argued by the county Corporation Counsel at the lower court level.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren invalidated the county’s partial GMO ban in a Nov. 27 order, saying state law pre-empts county law on the issue. He said lawmakers intended the state to have broad oversight of agricultural issues in Hawaii.

Paleka likened hiring the attorneys to retaining the National Rifle Association to support a county firearms law. …

In related news, read Civil Beat’s Hawaii House Panel to Take Up Pesticide Buffer Zones.

Taste of Ag papaya gmo

Rainbow papayas have been genetically modified to prevent a deadly virus.

Chad Blair/Civil Beat

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