Government

Changes to Cesspools and Wastewater Systems

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

DOH News Release

There are changes to rules about cesspools and wastewater systems taking place, and the Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) is soliciting public comments and holding meetings around the state, including Molokai.

Proposed changes include prohibiting the installation of new cesspools and requiring connections or upgrades of existing cesspools to septic systems within 180 days after sale of property.

There are roughly 90,000 cesspools statewide in Hawaii, with nearly 50,000 located on Hawaii Island, almost 14,000 on Kauai, more than 12,000 on Maui, more than 11,000 on Oahu, and more than 1,400 on Molokai. The untreated wastewater from cesspools can contaminate ground water, drinking water sources, streams and oceans with disease-causing pathogens, algae-causing nutrients, and other harmful substances.…

DOH Director Vows Continued Support for Kalaupapa

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

State Department of Health (DOH) Director Dr. Linda Rosen has a soft spot for Kaluapapa, but her term is nearing its end, and she visited the settlement last week to speak with residents there personally.

“I just want to let you know what a privilege it has been to be the director of the Department of Health and to have the privilege to be involved with Kalaupapa,” Rosen said.

Rosen, a political appointee, was appointed by Gov. Neil Abercrombie in February to fill a vacancy created by the death of former director Loretta Fuddy. With a new governor being elected in November, there will be a change in all of the appointed directors.…

Community Center Improvements Nearing Completion

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Kaunakakai’s community facility, the Mitchell Pauole Center, remains closed for renovations but its completion is near.

“The bulk of the work is done,” said Brianne Savage, interim parks director for the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation, which is in charge of the project. “We’re pushing [for reopening] as soon as we can.”

Construction began at the end of March, and was slated to be finished this December. Savage said she hopes the facility will be ready ahead of schedule. No official completion date has yet been set.

The renovations — which include an additional freestanding covered lanai, kitchen and restroom improvements, and wheelchair accessibility upgrades to current Americans with Disabilities (ADA) standards – are budgeted at over $1 million.…

Honoring County Employees

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Honoring County Employees

Harvey Place, center, the winner of this year’s Employee of The Year, stands with Mayor Alan Arakawa, right, and Molokai County Council member Stacy Crivello, left.

Molokai county employees serve island residents every day by working to make sure community needs are met. In recognition of their services and hard work, employees from Maui County’s five departments on island were honored at a luncheon last Thursday.

“Every employee and job is critical to the operation that we have,” said Mayor Alan Arakawa. “We want to make sure that everybody recognizes that we as county employees are here to provide the very best services we can to the community so we can have the highest quality of life.”

County employees are responsible for a variety of tasks that keep the island running smoothly — and many work above and beyond their job description.…

Community Talks County Budget

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Maui County mixed things up at this year’s community budget meetings with a new format that allowed residents, organizations and community leaders more focused opportunities to add input to the proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2015-2016.

The new format rotated community members through tables of staff from each county department. County directors and staff members listened to concerns, addressed budget needs and answered questions about department-specific county-related issues. Attendees were given a form to write down their comments. All concerns were submitted to Budget Director for the Mayor’s Office Sandy Baz at the end of the meeting.

“This new format is being very well received from the community,” Baz said.…

Kalaupapa Munitions Clean-Up Plan Proposed

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Kalaupapa Munitions Clean-Up Plan Proposed

Though Kalaupapa is historically known as a place of exile for Hansen’s disease patients, the peninsula was also used as a bombing range during World War II. As with other Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDs) across the country, ongoing efforts to locate and remove unexploded ordnance — or bombs that never detonated — have begun. After completing a remedial investigation and feasibility study, the Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has proposed a plan to clean up the area.

The former Makanalua Bombing Range, a 937-acre region on the northwest side of the Kalaupapa peninsula, was used by the U.S. Army for military bombing, rockets and gunnery practice from 1941 to 1946.…

Veterans Corner

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Community Contributed

By Jesse Church

Aloha all my fellow veterans and residents of Molokai, old Jesse here with all the veterans news and upcoming events. A few weeks ago, I began thinking about the new service organizations that we have here on Molokai, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) and how they are being run. Last year, after the passing of Commander Larry Helm, Dr. Hafermann took over as commander and he had the organization running great. He started having monthly meetings, we had good turnouts and everyone was informed about everything that was being done. …

Molokai Flood Zone Changes Presented on Monday

Friday, September 5th, 2014

County of Maui News Release

Important information on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA’s) new digital flood insurance rate maps (DFIRMs) will be highlighted at public meetings being held on Molokai Monday, Sept. 8. The meeting is from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Dept. of Hawaiian Homelands, with a presentation at 3 p.m.

For Molokai, the revised DFIRMs reflect the integration of the 2008 statewide hurricane study, which affects properties on the south shore of Molokai, as well as the decertification of the Kaunakakai levee system.

Personnel from FEMA, the County of Maui and the State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) will provide a short presentation and take questions on the new flood maps and insurance ramifications.…

Veterans Corner

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Community Contributed

By Jesse Church

Aloha my fellow veterans and residents of Molokai, old Jesse here with all the veterans news and upcoming events. The 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, is nicknamed “The Walking Dead.” Do you know why? First activated during WW II, the infantry battalion earned its macabre nickname during the Vietnam War. In a 1966 speech former Vietnamese Prime Minister Ho Chi Minh referred to the Marines as “walking dead,” dead but not buried. The unit sustained the highest casualty rate in Marine history during the Vietnam era, according to the battalion’s webpage on Marines. Military deployed for a combat tour lasting 47 months and seven days, another record.…

New Format for Community Budget Meetings

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

Maui County Budget Office News Release

Mayor Alan Arakawa and his administration will host a series of community meetings in September and October to receive comments and suggestions from the public regarding the proposed budget for the Fiscal Year 2015-2016. Citizens with an interest in the county budget are encouraged to attend and offer input, either as individuals or on behalf of an organization. Both written and verbal comments will be accepted.

The Molokai meeting will be held on Thursday, Sept. 25, at the Home Pumehana Center at 3 p.m.

As a new feature this year to the Mayor’s annual community budget meetings, tables will be set up to allow directors and staff from each county department to meet with members of the public, hear budget-related needs, listen to concerns and answer questions about various county-related issues.…