- Associated Press - Friday, April 13, 2018

HONOLULU (AP) - The Latest on the proposed construction of a giant telescope on Mauna Kea, Hawaii’s tallest mountain (all times local):

10 a.m.

Officials behind an effort to build a $1.4 billion telescope have delayed a decision whether to stick with plans to build it at the preferred site in Hawaii or select the alternate site on Spain’s Canary Islands.

The board of governors for the Thirty Meter Telescope International Observatory says Mauna Kea on the Big Island remains the preferred location.

That effort is being challenged before the Hawaii Supreme Court and in the Hawaii Legislature.

The board said it will delay its decision to let legal and regulatory challenges play out.

Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano and Hawaii’s tallest mountain. Some Native Hawaiians consider the mountain sacred and have protested construction.

4:30 a.m.

The Hawaii Senate has approved a ban on new construction on top of a mountain targeted for the $1.4 billion Thirty Meter Telescope project.

The bill that state lawmakers passed Thursday was reworked last week to include a series of audits and other requirements for the University of Hawaii to complete before the ban on Mauna Kea would be lifted.

House and Senate versions of the bill differ, so the two chambers would need to negotiate the differences in conference committee. But House leaders say they don’t have plans to advance the bill.

Democratic House Speaker Scott Saiki told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that the “bill is dead on arrival in the House.” He says laws concerning the mountain should not be passed while litigation is pending.

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