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CITY TRANSFERS KAWAINUI MARSH TO STATE  OPENING THE DOOR TO RESTORATION   

 

Mayor Mufi Hannemann announced today that the City & County of Honolulu has successfully transferred Kailua’s Kawainui Marsh to the state.

“After years of negotiation, I’m pleased to see the transfer of Kawainui Marsh finalized,” said Mayor Hannemann.  “This is the day we’ve been waiting for especially since I took office in 2005.   We were determined to bring the parties together to resolve this long standing dispute.    This agreement will allow the community to make the marsh the wonderful natural treasure it can be.”

 The deed recorded today at the Bureau of Conveyances transferred 693 acres of the marsh  from the City to the state, and was the culmination of a series of agreements between the City and State, beginning in 2007, over responsibility for various aspects of the Marsh.

“Now that the state has ownership of Kawainui Marsh, it can proceed with its long anticipated restoration project with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  $4 million dollars set aside by U.S. Senator Dan Inouye for the restoration project was in jeopardy had we not successfully concluded today’s transfer,” Mayor Hannemann said. 

“I personally would like to thank Mitch D’Olier of Kaneohe Ranch and Terry George, executive director of the  Harold K.L. Castle Foundation for persevering through the sometimes difficult negotiations to bring this agreement to its conclusion for the good of Kawainui Marsh and all the people who care so deeply about it,  and Senators Jill Tokuda and David Ige for their commitment and support.” Hannemann added.

Kawainui Marsh is the largest remaining wetland in Hawaii and provides habitat for four of Hawaii's endangered and endemic water birds: the Hawaiian stilt, Hawaiian moorhen, Hawaiian coot and Hawaiian duck. The marsh is in a caldera of the former Koolau shield volcano considered sacred to native Hawaiians.

It has been named a "Wetland of International Importance" by the Ramsar Convention, a designation that could help garner grant monies. 

 

Contact: Bill Brennan   527-6928

 

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

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