Community Development

What is community development? How should community development be governed?

A Field to Call Home

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

A Field to Call Home

Molokai’s softball team lines up by maile lei that was cut as part of the new field’s official blessing. Photo by Catherine Cluett.

The Molokai softball team finally has a place to call their own. For years, the girls and coaches bussed to practices and games at the county’s ball field in Kaunakakai. Meanwhile, they put in hours of labor on weekends the last couple of years to pick rocks and prepare their future field at Molokai High. It all became worth it last Saturday, when the brand new field officially opened with a blessing and the first pitch was thrown on their home diamond.…

Community Plan Update Begins

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

A group of 13 Molokai residents has begun the process of planning for the island’s next 20 years. The Molokai Community Plan acts like a blueprint for development, goals, policies and actions. Normally updated every 10 years, the belated update process got officially underway with the Community Plan Advisory Committee (CPAC)’s first meeting last week.

The first Molokai Community Plan was adopted in 1984 and was updated last in 2001. The community plan guides much of the large-scale decision-making through 2035. It includes complete descriptions of existing conditions on the island and explains land use designations, details on future development, projected effects of that development and infrastructure improvements.…

Proposed Solar Program Changes

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Proposed Solar Program Changes

Molokai has the highest percentage of renewable energy compared to total electric usage of any island at 51 percent, according to Maui Electric Company (MECO). With that high percentage, however, comes challenges for the island’s small electric grid – as well as unfair prices for customers without solar, claims MECO. The company is proposing changes that would temporarily halt the installation of rooftop solar on Molokai – and many customers and local solar companies aren’t happy about it.

In a program called Net Metering Program (NEM), customers with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are paid by the utility company for excess energy the panels generate at retail rate.…

MEO Celebrates 50 Years

Friday, February 20th, 2015

Community Contributed

By Lyn McNeff, CEO, Maui Economic Opportunity, Inc.

This year Maui Economic Opportunity (MEO) celebrates 50 years of service to the people of Molokai and Maui County. MEO began in 1965 as nonprofit grass roots Community Action Agency chartered to fight poverty in Maui County.

For more than two generations MEO has been engaged in this effort through community advocacy and by providing needed services such as transportation, early childhood development, youth services, inmate reintegration back into the community, and micro loans and business development services to low-income entrepreneurs.

Continuing with efforts to expand upon our work in the community, on March 21, MEO will host our 50th anniversary fundraiser dinner “Dancing with Our Stars.” The event is at the King Kamehameha Golf Club and it promises to be an exciting night of fun as local celebrities compete before judges to win the prize of best dancers of the night.…

Vet Center Awaits Final Inspection

Thursday, February 19th, 2015

Vet Center Awaits Final Inspection

Only an inspection and a certificate stand between Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) and the official opening of their brand new, long-awaited center.

The center just needs approval from the Department of Wastewater, the last in a lengthy series of inspections. Members will then wait for the county to process their application for a Certificate of Occupancy, which MVCV officers said could take a few weeks.

MVCV officers stand in their newly certified kitchen. Photo by Colleen Uechi.

After nine years of construction and legal woes, the veterans said it’s the last agonizing step before the center is finished.

“It’s been a lot of hard work.…

Commission Votes No on Apartment Project

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

Under mounting concerns over public safety in Manila Camp, the Molokai Planning Commission recommended a denial for requests for a zoning change and a community plan amendment that would potentially allow a 16-unit apartment complex to be built in the area.

The project, named Chopra Hale and proposed by Dilip Gunawardena of the LDE Group, LLC, outlined a two-story, multi-family apartment building that would cover 1.04 acres at 190 Makaena Place. The units would be available to those eligible under Maui County’s Section 8 program, which provides rental assistance for low-income residents.

LDE Group sought a zoning change from interim district to A-1 Apartment District, which would permit the construction of an apartment complex.…

Ikehu Molokai Energy Update

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

Ikehu Molokai News Release

Aloha and Happy New Year!  We want to express our gratitude to the entire community for welcoming us in the past with great warmth and hospitality, and engaging as partners in planning for the Ikehu Molokai renewable energy project.  Our vision for the project reflects those sentiments and values embraced by residents and expressed at many community meetings for a healthy, sustainable, and energy independent island. Success of the Ikehu Molokai project will only be accomplished as a long term collaboration between community groups, residents, and the Ikehu Molokai planning team.

As you know, the Ikehu Molokai project has been proposed to convert the island’s electricity to renewable energy.  …

Community Center Re-opens

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Community Center Re-opens

Community members visit the Mitchell Pauole Center after renovations. Photo by Catherine Cluett.

After being closed for renovations for almost a year, Kaunakakai’s community facility, the Mitchell Pauole Center, reopened with a blessing last week. The center now features a new 2,826-square-foot covered lanai for performances and gatherings, upgraded kitchen and bathrooms, new flooring, paint and other improvements. The facility was also brought into compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards for accessible design.

“It’s the gathering spot, the artery of Molokai,” said newly appointed County Parks and Recreation Director Kaala Buenconsejo. “This is probably the nicest community center in Maui County right now.”

Buenconsejo said additional work is planned for the Mitchell Pauole Center.…

Grand Re-Opening at Mitchell Pau`ole Center Tuesday

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

County of Maui News Release

A blessing and grand re-opening of the Mitchell Pau`ole Center will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 6 in Kaunakakai, the County Department of Parks and Recreation announced. The event will begin at 10 a.m. at the facility, located at 90 Ainoa Street.

The Mitchell Pau`ole Center was closed for improvements earlier this year, to bring the facility into compliance with the 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act Standards for Accessible design, with changes including ADA parking and access to center, signage, restrooms, drinking fountain, door hardware, counter and accessible sidewalks and seating by bleachers.

The facility also underwent an expansion, building repairs and upgrades, including a new 2,826 sq.…

Community Plan Moving Forward

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Community Plan Moving Forward

County planners and Molokai residents are gearing up to form a blueprint for the island through 2035. After many delays, the Community Plan update process is underway, poised to kick off in full force in the New Year.

The first Molokai Community Plan was adopted in 1984 and was updated last in 2001. The community plan guides much of the large-scale decision-making for the next 20 years. It includes complete descriptions of existing conditions on the island as well as goals, policies and actions, including land use designations, details on future development, projected effects of that development and infrastructure improvements. The plan also outlines implementation actions for those goals.…