Guoco’s Stewardship of Dilapidated Property Raises Red Flags
After many trips to the Islands of Hawaii over the last 20 years, my wife and I had the great pleasure of visiting Molokai. What a wonderful place! Beautiful scenery, friendly people, abundant wild life, and most of all, a quiet laid back lifestyle. Unfortunately, there is trouble in paradise. As a person that is not privy to all the facts about the battle between the people of Molokai and Guoco Leisure Limited (GLL), it looks like it could get ugly and do lasting damage to Molokai. At issue is granting MPL the right to sell property to build 200 homes at La`au Point . As evidenced by the numerous signs with the theme "Save La`au" there is virtually no support from locals to approve the MPL proposal.
MPL says they want to sell the land so they can take the money and "fix" the resort at Kaluakoi. My wife and I went to that sad, pathetic property hoping to play golf. Rather than the thriving resort we anticipated, we found terrible roads, boarded up condos – all of which indicate a rotting infrastructure. It will take years to upgrade this area. In my experience, large corporations that answer to stockholders have little regard for the needs or hopes of the local population. It's all about the corporation's bottom line.
MPL's business plan seems to be one of selling off the Ranch one piece at a time – until it's gone. Maintenance can only be deferred for so long. We stayed at the Camp at Kaupoa Beach and although great place and a wonderful staff, it was obvious that there was a lot of concern about the condition and future of the Camp.
I may not know the details but do know what I read and observed on our recent trip. We had the great fortune to hear Anakala Pilipo Solatrio give his last Hawaiian culture presentation at Kaupoa Beach Camp as an employee of The Ranch. It was a wonderful experience and we learned a great deal about Hawaii's culture. The fact that Guoco Leisure Limited (GLL) has eliminated his position makes us think that the shortsighted decisions are being made now will have a lasting negative impact for Molokai. This unfortunate action along with GLL's withdrawal from WWG should raise some red flags for the people of Molokai.
We say Mahalo to the wonderful staff at the Camp at Kaupoa and good luck to the people of Molokai in their struggle to keep their beautiful island and lifestyle intact.
President Salishan Leaseholders
Gleneden Beach, OR