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NUUANU/PUNCHBOWL NEIGHBORHOOD BOARD
MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2005
BOOTH DISTRICT PARK
CALL TO ORDER: With a quorum present, Chair Canopin called the meeting to order at 7:22 p.m.
MEMBERS PRESENT: James Bannan, Al Canopin, Jr., Remy Luria, Mason Aiona, Wendy Young Ogawa, Sylvia Young, Patt Spencer, Dean Asahina, Audrey Hidano, Paula Kurashige, Philip Nerney.
MEMBERS ABSENT: Rae Gee and Richard Carreira.
GUESTS: Barry Usagawa, Glenn Oyama, Greg Shiu, Su Shin, and Iris Oda (Board of Water Supply), Mike and Aileen Tang, Sgt. Gordon Costa and Officer Jeff Simmons (Honolulu Police Department, District 5, Kalihi), Lt. C. Loui, Sgt. C. Lai, and Officer R. Dagan (Honolulu Police Department, District 1, Honolulu), Eric Hirano (Department of Land and Natural Resources), Captain David Yamada Honolulu Fire Department, Nu'uanu Station), Senator Suzanne Chun Oakland, Dennis Kamimura (Division of Motor Vehicles), and Nola Frank (Neighborhood Commission Office Staff).
VACANCIES: (1) Subdistrict 1 – There were no interested persons to fill the vacancy. Subdistrict 2 – There were no interested persons to fill the vacancy.
FIRE AND POLICE:
HONOLULU FIRE DEPARMENT - Captain Yamada reported the following:
Ø Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the United States.
Ø After a party, check for smoldering cigarettes.
Ø Use caution with holiday decorations and whenever possible, choose those made with flame-resistant, flame-retardant, or non-combustible materials.
Ø Purchase only lights and electrical decorations bearing the name of an independent testing lab, and follow the manufacturer's instructions for installation and maintenance.
Ø Do not overload extension cords.
Ø Try to keep trees as moist as possible by giving them plenty of water daily.
Ø When purchasing an artificial tree, be sure it is labeled as fire-retardant.
Questions, concerns and comments: (1) Spencer thanked Captain Yamada and the Nu'uanu Fire Station for responding to an emergency call at her residence although she was not at home. (2) Kurashige reported 15 to 19 floods in Nu'uanu on October 1, 2005. Several homeowners with severe damage did not call 911. Captain Yamada and the Nu'uanu Fire Station were commended for going to the Nu'uanu Valley Park to assist without calls made to 911. She noted that half of a piece of property on Country Club Road was destroyed. (3) Aiona also thanked the Nu'uanu Fire Department for assisting him with Booth District Park and in the Pauoa area.
Captain Yamada was thanked for attending the meeting.
Ogawa arrived during the above portion of the meeting (9 members present)
HONOLULU POLICE DEPARTMENT:
District 1, Honolulu – Officer Dagon reported the following: statistics for the month of October compared with the previous month included robbery 2/0, burglary 2/0, UEMV (unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle) 9/4, auto theft 21/7, aggravated assault 0/1, simple assault 0/4, sex assault 0/1, family offense 3/5, drug offenses 1/1, and graffiti 0/0.
Questions, concerns and comments: (1) Spencer reported that at the first hairpin turn on Pacific Heights Road an accident occurred when someone hit an SUV parked in front of a fire hydrant. She mentioned that about thirty years ago she started a campaign was started to prohibit cars from parking in front of fire hydrants. The response was that violations are taken seriously, with cars towed away. If the fire hydrant is not completely obstructed, the vehicle is given a citation.
Officer Dagan, Sgt. Lai, and Lt. Loui were thanked for attending the meeting.
Luria and Young arrived during the above portion of the meeting (11 members present).
District 5, Kalihi – Sgt. Costa reported the following: (1) Statistics for Beats 572 and 573: Sex offense 0, robbery 1, burglary 7, theft 1, UEMV (unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle) 22, motor vehicle theft 5, assault 2, property damage 0, drugs/narcotics 0, family offenses 3, DUI 3, MVC (motor vehicle collision) 29, and arguments 21. (b) Sgt. Costa also reported there was an increase in UEMV's mostly at the Pali Lookout. The security camera at the lookout, operated by AKAL, a security company, is functioning. An officer is posted there on his down time.
Sgt. Costa and Sgt. Iwane were thanked for attending the meeting.
Chair Canopin called a ten-minute recess. At 7:47 the agenda resumed.
Agenda item 4, Approval of The Regular Meeting Minutes of October 18, 2005 and Agenda item 5, Secretary/Treasurer's Report were deferred.
CHEVRON GAS STATION PROPERTY (Nu'uanu Avenue/Pauoa Road) – Michael Tang, a Hawaii Kai resident, was seeking Board support for a zone change from R-3.5 to B.1 (business) for the property he just acquired located at the intersection of Nu'uanu Avenue and Pauoa Road. According to the Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP) one of the requirements is to come before the Neighborhood Board. The reason for the zone change is to correct the records from a residential zoning to a business zone. However, the property will continue to be leased to Chevron, which occupies the site. Letters have been sent to the four surrounding neighbors of the property regarding tonight's proposal.
Questions, answers and comments: (1) The reason for the zone change is to correct the records with the City and County of Honolulu regarding usage. (2) Tang recently purchased the property from the Gilbert Trust. (3) Other businesses eligible with a B-1 zoning are a shopette with a gas station or a coffee shop. (4) Relative to other requirements with the application, after attending a Board meeting the next step would be to meet with DPP. (3) The address of the property is 1901 Nu'uanu Avenue. However, a resident said that the address is 1909 Nu'uanu Avenue. Tang responded that across the road of property are two homes, Hawaii Baptist Academy across the street, Foster Family Planning on the other and Kawananakoa Middle School on the south side. (5) The zone change would not be refused as long as the property is leased to Chevron.
Hidano moved, seconded by Bannan that the Nu'uanu/Punchbowl Neighborhood Board No. 12 supports the zone change for the property located at 1901 Nu'uanu Avenue.
Discussion followed: Young disclosed that Mr. Tang is related to her late husband. The motion was unanimously adopted, 11-0-0.
Michael and Aileen Tang were thanked for attending the meeting.
NU'UANU RESERVOIR DAM (Maintenance & Deteriorating Condition):
STATE DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES – Eric Hirano, Chief Engineer of the State Department of Land and Natural Resources Engineering Division, reported the following: The Department of Land and Natural Resources Engineering Division administers the Hawaii Dam Safety Program. Only dams of a certain size (height and volume) criteria are regulated under the Hawaii program. Generally, regulated dams have a dam height over 25 feet and impound more than 5 million gallons of water (some exceptions apply). The general duties of the DLNR Dam Safety Program are: (1) Establish policies and guidelines; (2) Conduct investigations; (3) Review Plans and Issue Permits; (4) Emergency Action Planning; (5) National Inventory of Dams; (6) Training and Awareness; (7) Enforcement.
Due to a newspaper article dated October 23, 2005, his office received several calls and inquiries relative to classification of dams, high hazards from dam safety regulations such as loss of life and property damage below the dam structure. However, the stability of the Nu'uanu Reservoir was not addressed.
An assessment report found vegetation overgrowth, which must be removed or maintained. DLNR is working with the Board of Water Supply regarding this matter.
The dam serves as an important control feature, but there are no guarantees.
Questions, concerns and comments: (1) In response to a question asked by Luria regarding who in DLNR has experience in damming, Hirano replied that Edwin Matsuda is the dam engineer. (2) Relative to the question asked if more engineers in the State are needed to monitor dams. Hirano answered that there is a Flood Control Safety Program. The head of that program has retired, but is currently working on a part-time basis. Hirono stated that he works half time with dam safety and the other half on other projects due to budget cuts. DLNR will be submitting new budget requests and Hirano asked for support. (3) In response to Nerney, the inundated area is half a foot to three feet. (4) Bannan asked if the dam is basically a catchment area. The reply was that the reservoir (dam) was built for BWS purposes, but is now used for flood control. (5) Hidano mentioned that about eight or ten years ago she did a site visit and that the reservoir was leaking and continues to leak today, and asked what the BWS has done to fix the problem. (6) Kurashige asked the following: (a) eight to ten inches of rain in Nu'uanu caused flooding. (b) how much water is being released from the reservoir during heavy rains, because people are losing properties. She said that soon there would be more development (Nu'uanu Valley), which will cause more flooding to the people living in the lower areas.
Eric Hirano was thanked for attending the meeting.
BOARD OF WATER SUPPLY (BWS) – Barry Usagawa, of BWS Water Resources Division, introduced Greg Shiu, and Su Shin. He presented the following:
Glenn Oyama, Geologist for the BWS, presented the following – Water is discharged from the Nu'uanu Reservoir from a twenty-four foot outlet, with an average daily discharge of below 27.5 million gallons daily. Monitoring is done weekly and the reservoir's height water level recorded. According to records the average discharge for 300,000 gallons of water per day is below 27.5 feet. Some diameter wells located up stream are used for measuring water levels within the wells. The water level of wells on the mauka side is the same as the reservoir, but water levels are lower on the makai side.
Questions, concerns and comments:
Barry Usagawa and Glenn Oyama were thanked for attending the meeting.
BOARD OF WATER SUPPLY – Iris Oda introduced Su Shin who reported the following: A map of the Nu'uanu Water System on Alika Avenue, Dowsett Avenue, Puiwa and Wood Streets was shown. She explained that the addition of new water mains and additional fire hydrants would be installed. Changes to the plans have been made because the hydrant spacing must be equally spaced at three hundred feet apart. Guidelines followed parking and property line issues. It was considered keeping the fire hydrants equally spaced with the exception of one hydrant at three hundred fifty-one feet from the other. BWS is trying to upgrade the system and is working within the Fire Departments regulations.
Questions, concerns and comments: (1) In response to a question to Chair Canopin and the distance between fire hydrants, it depends on usage. For example for agricultural use the fire hydrants are placed seven hundred fifty feet apart, whereas for single-family communities three hundred fifty feet apart. Guidelines are based on use; it is not a law but a statewide guideline. However, every island is different. (2) Kurashige mentioned that the previous chair had received information relative to the project but it was not passed on to Board members.
Su Shin and Iris Oda were thanked for attending the meeting.
DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES – Director, Dennis Kamimura, reported that statistics as of October 2005 included 634 abandoned vehicle complaints filed, with 324 complaints closed due to the vehicle being attended to, not found at reported location, or located on private property; 57 vehicles were towed, 155 derelict vehicles towed, and 128 turned over by the legal owners.
According to Section 290-1, HRS, and per the courts, the Abandoned Vehicle Division must try to locate the owners of cars unattended and unlawfully parked before issuing a citation for removal. As long as a car is moved, even an inch, it is considered attended and cannot be cited or removed. If citations are removed from the vehicles windshield, it is deemed attended.
Hawaii Revised Statutes 290-8 contains the rulings on derelict cars. To be considered derelict, a vehicle must have major parts missing (removed), or the owner no longer resides at the registered address, the vehicle identification number (VIN) and license plates removed, the car is not registered or no records are found, etc.
Parking restrictions could be enforced if signage is posted.
One of the major problems of concern is that the Motor Vehicles Division does not receive reports of abandoned vehicles cited in a timely manner. If a marked abandoned or derelict vehicle has not been removed after the vehicle has been ticketed, the public should contact the Motor Vehicle Control Section to obtain an update as to the expected removal dates. If the vehicle has been scheduled for removal and not removed immediately action will be taken against the contractor and the suspected vehicle. To report problems contact Abandoned Vehicles at 733-2530 or log on to the City's website at www.honolulu.gov.
Questions, concerns and comments:
Chair Canopin relinquished the gavel to Vice Chair Kurashige.
The Chair resumed the meeting.
Aiona reported that this past Saturday there was a vehicle on the side of Pauoa Road (around the corner from Namilimili Street) with two missing tires and still up on a car jack at a forty-five degree angle. He noted that within three months' time the car had received two citations, which were removed. However, an officer responded, cited the car again, and had the vehicle towed. Aiona wanted to know why the removal took so long because the vehicle was parked in a school zone on a heavily traveled road. The response was that HPD gives citations to cars that are hazardously parked or for a safety issue. The vehicle was towed because of the safety issue.
Mr. Kamimura was thanked for attending the meeting.
Nerney moved, seconded by Bannan to adjourn the meeting. Discussion followed: Luria asked that agenda item 8, Approval for Resolution On Abandoned/derelict Vehicles, be discussed and Board action be taken prior to adjournment. The motion failed 5-6. Aye: Bannan, Young, Aiona, Ogawa, Nerney; Nay: Canopin, Luria, Spencer, Asahina, Hidano, Kurashige. A motion needs eight (8) voted to pass.
The meeting continued.
APPROVAL FOR RESOLUTION ON ABANDONED/DERELICT VEHICLES – Luria reported that he presented last month this resolution requesting information on the removal process, and arrange a county wide audit to determine how long it should take, how long it actually takes for vehicles to be ticketed and removed. Luria moved, seconded by Bannan to vote for the abandoned vehicle resolution and then adjourn the meeting. The motion was adopted unanimously, 11-0-0.
ADJOURNMENT – Chair Canopin adjourned the meeting at 9:45 p.m.
Submitted by Nola Frank, Neighborhood Assistant
Reviewed by Chair Al Canopin, Jr. and Secretary Patt Spencer
Nuuanu/Punchbowl Neighborhood Board
Inventory of Community Concerns
January 17, 2006
|Tuesday, January 17, 2006|