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 Kahaluu Neighborhood Board No. 29

 

DRAFT REGULAR MEETING MINUTES

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 10, 2011

KEY PROJECT

 

CALL TO ORDER: Chair David Henkin called the meeting to order at 7:06 p.m. with a quorum of eight (8) members present.  Note – this 15-member Board requires eight (8) members to establish a quorum and to take official Board action.

 

Members Present – Gregory Geboski, David Henkin, Rocky Kaluhiwa (arrived 7:40 p.m.), Ken LeVasseur, Matt Longfellow, Clifford Loo, Amy Luersen (arrived 7:10 p.m.), Art Machado, Yvonne Nelson, Flora Obayashi (appointed at this meeting) and Lucy Salas.

 

Members Absent – Kyrie Yonehiro (resigned), Leatrice (Lee) Gomes.

 

Guests – Jody Solbach (Tradition House Foundation), Gary M. Arguilles (Marcus’s House), Adele Mitchell, Robert Vierra, Lt. John Vines and Capt. Bagan Tsuchida (Honolulu Police Department), Reyn Nylen, Brian Walsh, Bob Tom, Jesse Kestelis, Shelley Muraoka (KAHEA), Anne Miller, David Johnson, Marie and George Samadio, and Gloria J.P. Gaines (Neighborhood Commission Office staff).

 

Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) – A representative or report was not available.

 

Honolulu Police Department (HPD) – Lt. John Vines reported the following:

 

·         July 2011 Statistics – Included 5 assaults, 2 auto/motorcycle thefts, 7 burglaries, 10 thefts, and 4 unauthorized entries to motor vehicles.

·         New Captain – Lt. Vines introduced Capt. Bagan Tsuchida, the newly assigned Captain of the district.

 

At 7:10 p.m. Member Luersen arrived; nine (9) members present.

 

FILL VACANCIES: Chair Henkin announced one vacancy in each of Subdistricts 1, 3, and 5 and described the districts’ boundaries. LeVasseur nominated Flora Obayashi to fill a vacancy in Subdistrict 3. Ms. Obayashi stated she is a former pastor of the Methodist Church, a commissioner of the Aloha Council of Boy Scouts, and is involved with local school programs. There being no other nominations or objections, the Kahalu`u Neighborhood Board No. 29 appointed Flora Obayashi to Subdistrict 3, 9-0-0 (AYES: Geboski, Henkin, LeVasseur, Longfellow, Loo, Luersen, Machado, Nelson, and Salas; NAYS: None; ABSTENTIONS: None).

 

Chair Henkin called a short recess and Neighborhood Assistant Gloria Gaines administered the oath of office to Ms. Obayashi. The meeting resumed with 10 members present.

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

 

·         Next Board Meeting – The next Kahalu‘u Neighborhood Board No. 29 regular meeting is Wednesday, September 14, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. at KEY Project on 47-200 Waihe‘e Road.

 

·         O’ahu 2035 – The O’ahu General Plan Survey is available online through Thursday, September 1, 2011 at http://honoluludpp.org/planning/O`ahuGenPlan.asp. Email Comments to gp2035@hhf.com or Fax to 808-545-2050.

 

·         State Reapportionment Plan – The State’s draft reapportionment plan is open for public comment.  Proposed changes for the State House would move Board Subdistricts 5 and 6 to House District 48, with the rest of the Board area remaining in House District 47.  Changes for the State Senate would move Board Subdistricts 3 and 6 to Senate District 24, with the rest of the Board area remaining in Senate District 23. A public hearing is scheduled for September 6, 2011 at 6:00 p.m. at Aikahi Elementary School Cafeteria.

 

RESIDENTS’/COMMUNITY CONCERNS:

 

·         Hotel in La`ie – Brian Walsh represented Malama ia Ko`olauloa, a group opposing the development of a 223 room hotel in La`ie and the Envision La`ie project. The group is seeking on a meeting with the developer of the hotel to discuss concerns. Residents were encouraged to visit Malama ia Ko`olauloa’s Facebook page for updates.

·         Marcus House – Gary Arguilles from Marcus House expressed concerns about flood damage experienced by neighbors and offered to help clean the Waiahole Stream. It was suggested that he contact the Waiahole-Waikane Community Association. Member Salas will assist the resident.

·         `Iu`iu Street Trees – Member Machado thanked State Civil Defense and Representative Jessica Wooley for progress addressing hazards on Genshiro Kawamoto’s property that threaten neighbors on `Iu`iu Street.  Using Act 76, State Civil Defense will trim trees and remove boulders and bill Mr. Kawamoto.

·         Hui `Iwa Loop Letter – This item was deferred until the report from the Mayor’s Representative.

 

BOARD OF WATER SUPPLY (BWS) – Barry Usugawa reported the following:

 

·         Main Break – No main breaks reported for July 2011. O`ahu potable production for the week ending July 30, 2011 was 140.5 million gallons per day (mgd), which is 20 mgd less than the five year average.  Rainfall in May and June was 200% of normal, but lower than average rainfall is predicted for the rest of the year.

·         Water Rate Increase – BWS is proposing to raise water rates to fund the operation, maintenance, and replacement of O`ahu’s aging water infrastructure. A water rate increase of 9.65 percent each year over the next five years (beginning January 1, 2012) is being proposed. A public hearing will be held on Monday, August 22, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. in the BWS board room at 630 South Beretania Street. Public comments can be submitted in writing for those unable to attend the public hearing, or delivered in person during the public hearing. For more information, visit www.boardofwatersupply.com or call the BWS Communications Office at 748-5041.

·         Water Conservation – BWS reminded the public to continue conservation efforts – use what you need, but don’t waste it. Never water lawn every day. Most lawns need to be watered two or three times a week. Water during the cool of day. Set irrigation sprinklers to activate before 9:00 a.m. or after 5:00 p.m. Consider drip irrigation. For more conservation tips, visit BWS website.

·         Ko`olaupoko Watershed Management Plan – Chair Henkin stated the final draft version of the plan will be available and considered for an agenda item with a presentation at next month’s Board meeting. Members may request a copy of the plan on CD-ROM through Chair Henkin.

 

At 7:40 p.m. Member Kaluhiwa arrived; 11 members present.

 

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

 

  1. Decoupling – Member Luersen inquired whether BWS will consider decoupling billing from water usage so BWS would not depend on consumers using water to cover its costs.  HECO is moving toward decoupling to encourage energy conservation.  B. Usugawa responded that BWS expects usage to decrease as the price increases; BWS does a rate study every five years.
  2. Fire Hydrant – Member LeVasseur raised concerns about water mains breaking when firefighters open or shut the fire hydrant valves too quickly, leaving surrounding residents with no water service, and inquired if there are procedures for HFD to open hydrants to avoid problems.  B. Usugawa responded that hydrants are small valves compared to water mains, so there usually is no problem.  Residents should alert BWS if such situations occur.
  3. Water in Hydrants Potable – Most hydrants use potable water.
  4. Rate Increase – Member Longfellow questioned why BWS needed to increase its capital program so much (from $40-$45 million per year to $80 million per year) in only five years.  B. Usugawa responded that BWS currently can afford to replace only 5 miles of pipes per year out of 200 miles in the system.  If replacement stayed at that level, main breaks will increase.  There should have been a rate increase in the 1990’s, but wasn’t.  BWS is spreading the increase over five years to minimize the impact.
  5. Developers – Large-scale developments are required to build their own infrastructure to BWS standards and then dedicate it to BWS to maintain.  Smaller developments pay a one-time “impact” fee to expand the BWS system.
  6. Rate Approval – The approval body is not the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), but BWS. Under the City Charter, BWS’ seven member board sets the rates and approves the budget.
  7. He`eia Harbor – The State pays for the water used at He`eia Harbor. Using desalinized water would be very expensive.
  8. Private Water – The BWS has no authority over private wells, which are regulated by the PUC if they serve more than 25 people.  In the future, the Commission on Water Resources Management, which has authority over all water use, may impose a fee on everyone who extracts water to protect watersheds.

 

Marine Corps Base Hawai`i (MCBH) – Sgt. Scott Whittington reported the following:

 

·         Hours of Operation – Mondays through Thursdays from 7:00 a.m. to midnight; Fridays from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.; and Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Closed Sundays and holidays

·         Airborne Tactical Advantage Company (ATAC) – ATAC will be flying 24-hour operations from 11:00 p.m. Sunday, August 7th through 10:00 p.m. August 12th. They will be flying at 4,000 feet over MCBH at 7,000 to 9,000 feet over land.

·         August/September 2011Events         

o        August 13th – Keiki Tradewind Triathlon, 6:30 a.m.

o        August 14th – Tradewind Triathlon, 6:30 a.m. http://www.mccshawaii.com/cgfit.shtml for more info.

o        September 1st – MCB Hawai`i hosting the Greatest Generation WWII Veterans group aboard the base for a historical tour.

o        September 9th – 9/11Remembrance Ceremony at the base flagpole.

·         Deployments – Deployed are 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment; 1st Battalion, 12th Marine Regiment; and Helicopter Squadron 463 in Afghanistan; plus other detachments and individuals augmentees.

·         Noise Complaints – Please call the Public Affairs Office at 257-8832 with date and time of incident.

·         Announcements

o        HMH-463 expects to receive the first four CH-53E helicopters to replace their CH-53Ds in early September

o        For more information about career opportunities at MCB Hawaii, please visit the MCCS website, www.mecshawan.com, or call 254-7632. Now taking applications for child care workers at the new child care center opening in September.

o        Kaneohe Bay Air Show planned for September 29, 2011 and will include the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels.

 

Kane`ohe Bay Regional Council (KBRC) – Member Machado reported that rules for Ahu `O Laka will be discussed at KBRC’s September meeting. He thinks existing rules should be enforced, rather than adopt more rules that will not be enforced, and suggested HPD should enforce rules on intoxication at He`eia Kea Pier.

 

TREASURER’S REPORT:  A treasurer’s report was not available because the Board has not yet had a budget assigned.

 

PRESENTATION:

 

Tradition House Foundation – Jody Solbach is the owner of the Tradition House Foundation’s Clean and Sober House at 47-211 ‘Iu’iu Street in Kahalu`u, which has been operating for about five years. The State Department of Health used to regulate the House, but now the City Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP) does.  DPP requires a Conditional Use Permit to house a maximum of 12 individuals. The program is a halfway house for individuals from prison or undergoing treatment. Residents work with State agencies, physicians, police and hospitals. Each person is responsible for chores, personal hygiene, and etiquette. The program’s purpose is to house and feed residents and also train them in landscaping, with most residents working for Mr. Solbach’s landscaping company.  All residents are male, and female visitors are not allowed. Alcohol and drug use is prohibited.  Most residents do not have cars, and there is plenty of parking for those who do.

 

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

 

1.       Comment by Neighbor – Member Machado lives on ‘Iu’iu Street and reported that Mr. Solbach runs a good program giving people second chance; he expressed his support of the program. There have been no complaints from the neighbors.

2.       Questions from Members – There are four bedrooms in the house. Parking is for staff vehicles because most residents do not own vehicles.

3.       Health Issues – Drug tests are done frequently. There may a few individuals that may be mentally or physically handicapped. Those that take psychiatric medications also have a case manager.
All medication is recorded.

4.       Change in Status – Mr. Solbach stated the change from a for-profit status to a 5013C non-profit status will give him the capability to attract more funding.

 

Proposed Monk Seal Critical Habitat – Shelly Muraoka stated KAHEA is the Hawaiian-Environmental Alliance working with other groups to help protect the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, home of the endangered Hawaiian monk seal. KAHEA is also working to expand the monk’s seals designated critical habitat designation to the main Hawaiian Islands, which will help the species to survive sea level rise from climate change. Critical habitat ensures that federal actions will not destroy habitat needed for the monk seal’s recovery, but will not affect subsistence or commercial activities under the State’s jurisdiction.  A map indicated areas for critical habitat was available to residents.  All of Kane’ohe Bay, as well as MCB Hawai`i, is excluded from the proposed designation.  A public hearing is scheduled on Thursday August 11, 2011 at McCoy Pavilion from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Written comments are due by Wednesday, August 31, 2011.

 

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

 

  1. Exemption – Kane`ohe Bay area is excluded from the proposal due to poor water quality. Chair Henkin added that critical habitat areas are identified based on whether they are essential to survival and recovery of the endangered Hawaiian monk seal.
  2. Other Seals – Member Kaluhiwa raised a concern about seals from elsewhere being brought to the Main Hawaiian Islands because beach access is restricted when seals haul out. 
  3. Suggestion – Member Luersen stated that Ahu `o Laka and the beach by Moli`i Fishpond should be considered for designation as critical habitat.
  4. Aggressive – Member Kaluhiwa also raised the concern that Hawaiian Monk Seals are aggressive towards humans.
  5. Chair’s Comments – It is the monk seal’s critically endangered status that requires that beach areas be roped off when seals haul up, not critical habitat.  Whether critical habitat is designated or not would not change that. The Hawaiian monk seal population is only about 1,100 in the world and is declining quickly, so the species needs help.  In areas where critical habitat is designated, Federal agencies would not be able to destroy the habitat, which would help protect local beaches and near shore fisheries for the benefit of local residents, as well as the seals.

 

REPORTS BY PUBLIC OFFICIALS:

 

Mayor’s Representative – Forrest Frizzell reported the following:

 

·         Illegal Activity – HPD investigated residents’ reports that people are hanging out under the banyan tree near the Hygienic Store, consuming alcohol beverages and dealing illegal drugs. Consumption of alcoholic beverages is occurring on private property with approval from the Hygienic Store’s owners and management. Officers did not observe any illegal drug violations.  They will do periodic checks for violations.

·         Coral Kingdom Crosswalk – The recent pedestrian fatality on Kamehameha Highway near Coral Kingdom raised a pedestrian safety concern near the bus stop where the accident occurred. Residents would like to know if the City could install an illuminated crosswalk, pedestrian crossing signs, and a flashing light triggered when a pedestrian wants to cross the highway. Kamehameha Highway near Coral Kingdom is under the jurisdiction of the State of Hawai`i Department of Transportation (HDOT).   The City Department of Transportation Services (DTS) will forward the pedestrian crossing concern to HDOT for their investigation and direct reply to the Board.

·         Overgrown Trees – Member Gomes had stated the trees along ‘Ahuimanu Road near Melekula Road are overgrown and requested the City to trim the trees. ‘Ahuimanu Road, from Pakai Place to the dead end, including the intersection of Melekula Road, is privately owned.  Therefore, maintenance of the trees is the responsibility of the private property owner. The Division of Urban Forestry (DUF) of the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) is responsible for maintenance of recognized City trees along City sidewalk areas, parks, and various traffic medians. There are no trees along the City owned portion of ‘Ahuimanu Road, from Kahekili Highway to Pakai Place that are under the maintenance jurisdiction of DUF. For overgrowth at City road sides, maintenance is the responsibility of the Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM).

·         Waiahole Beach Park – A Waiahole resident requested the park grounds of Waiahole Beach Park be maintained as before. The lack of maintenance has attracted many homeless residents that are now living along the stream and fishing the bay with illegal gill nets. Stolen vehicles were also noticed. DPR/District 4 cuts the grass twice per month.  Before, the Waiahole-Waikane Community Association cleared and maintained the area. HPD has assisted DPR to remove the homeless living along the stream, but they return after several months. Homelessness is not a violation, and camping without a permit is a violation. Officers did not observe any camping violations or stolen vehicles. The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) is responsible for illegal fishing activities. Lieutenant Vines e-mailed a copy of this complaint to DLNR on July 28, 2011.

·         Waipaipai Stream – During the heavy rains, Waipaipai Stream flooded and damaged Mr. Tom’s wall and property. DFM and the Department of Design and Construction (DCC) are currently investigating.

·         Long Bridge – Concerns were expressed about the color chosen for the paint on the He`eia long bridge. DTS issued a work order to restripe and paint the long bridge on Kamehameha Highway.

·         Kailua Boat Ramp – The Kailua boat ramp is being rebuilt and will be out of commission until Sunday, August 14, 2011.

·         Smoke Testing – There will be smoke testing of the sewer pipes in the Punawai area, near He`eia. A map was available for residents to review.

·         Flood Task Force – Mr. Frizzell met with Councilmember Martin, who is supporting efforts to form a flood task force. He also met with DPP, DFM, DCC, and the Mayor’s office, and all agreed to become part of the task force.

·         Software – Mr. Frizzell secured a grant for the City from Code for America, a non-profit group that will meet with stakeholders to gather information on how to use technology to solve problems like transparency and transportation. Work on the project will begin January 2012.

·         Bond Rating – The City’s bond rating rose to AA+, the second highest possible rating. Last month the City sold $312 million in bonds, of which $9 million were sold locally.

 

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

 

  1. Waiahole Beach Park – Member Salas explained the tall grass in question is not cut and still remains after the City does their grass cutting. The tall grass provides a barrier for squatters in the area across the Waiahole Stream. There is a continuing problem of human fecal waste and discarded toilet paper and other trash is visible along the shore and on the grounds of the beach park. Member Salas would like City departments to join her on a site visit to identify the areas of concern.
  2. He`eia Kea LandsMember Kaluhiwa has witnessed people trespassing, cutting trees and gathering scrap metal on the City-owned property opposite He`eia Kea Harbor. She asked what can be done about this.  Mr. Frizzell recommended the community form a neighborhood security watch group.
  3. Flood Task Force – Residents affected by floods expressed their support of the flood task force.
  4. Waipaipai Stream – Per City Corporation Counsel, Mr. Frizzell was unable to comment at this time. Resident affected by the Waipaipai Stream flood stated he tried to get help from the City to repair his wall but the City denied because it is his wall.
  5. Hui `Iwa LoopMember LeVasseur received a resident’s concern about speeding and suggested speed bumps and crosswalks in portions of the Hui `Iwa Street loop behind the Temple Valley Shopping Center.  Member Geboski said residents were concerned about losing parking spaces if crosswalks were installed.  Member Longfellow said there is no need for crosswalks and that speeding is not a big problem.

 

U.S. Representative Mazie Hirono – A representative or report was not available.

 

Council Chair Ernie Martin – Mike Sakata provided members with a report and highlighted the following:

 

·         Flood Task Force – Senator Clayton Hee and Representative Wooley were interested in the task force. HDOT was also interested but will defer to DLNR, which has more authority over streams.

·         Pulama Bypass – DTS is working with its consultant on the planning of the Pulama Bypass Capital Improvement Project, which includes determining the City right-of-way limits for the streets along the bypass routes, and most importantly, determining if it is feasible to acquire the private potions of Pulama Road and upgrade them to adequately serve as a bypass route. By the end of August 2011, DTS will inform the board of the status of their findings.

·         Kahalu`u Flood Control Basin – The City currently lacks funds to clear and dredge the basin. It will be studied as part of a previously initiated capital improvement project titled “The Dredging of Streams from Kahalu`u to Waialua.” The study is anticipated to be completed by the end of the year at which point we can find out how much funding is needed to proceed with the design phase of the dredging project.

·         Status of the Landslide at Lulani Street – Currently the homeowner is still in litigation with the contractor.

 

Questions, comments and concerns followed:

 

  1. Hio Place Retention Basin – Member LeVasseur reported that this flood control basin was scheduled for repairs next year, but is on hold due to storm damage.
  2. Kahalu`u Lagoon – Member LeVasseur stated that rubbish can be manually removed from the lagoon because it is visible above the water level.
  3. 47-210 Kamehameha Hwy. – It was reported that a mango tree is overhanging Kamehameha Hwy at Hunaahi Street and needs to be trimmed.

 

Senator Clayton Hee – A representative or report was not available.

 

Representative Jessica Wooley – Chair Henkin stated Representative Wooley could not be here due a family emergency. Member Machado stated he met with Rep. Wooley, and she was able to secure $1 million for cameras, a police trailer or other solutions to the drug problem at the banyan tree near the Hygienic Store. He is forming a committee to make recommendations. Chair Henkin stated that HECO is ready to move utility poles at the intersection of Kamehameha and Kahekili Highways, as soon as the State and the Hygienic Store reach agreement about the required aerial easement.

 

DATES FOR BOARD RECESSES – Chair Henkin mentioned that the Board can recess three times a year. Luersen moved and Obayashi seconded that the Board recess December 2011. It was discussed that members would first check their calendars to see if there are conflicts with the November meeting before voting to recess December 2011. Luersen withdrew the motion. This item will be on next month’s agenda for discussion.

 

AGENDA ITEMS FOR FUTURE BOARD MEETINGS: Chair Henkin reviewed the following potential agenda items:  Pulama Bypass – DTS may be ready by September meeting; Final Draft of Ko`olaupoko Watershed Management Plan; Ohulehule Conservation Reserve in Waikane; Castle Foundation grants; improvements to Kamehameha/Kahekili Highway intersection; Melekula Road Subdivision; Coral Kingdom – Member LeVasseur to report; RAM’s proposal to move to Mapele Road – Member Machado met with RAM and will be ready by September 2011 meeting; Waianu Bridge flooding; Big Wind Project – HECO offered to make a presentation.

 

Chair Henkin recommended that next month’s agenda include the following time-sensitive projects, subject to confirmation that presentations are ready: 1) Final Draft of Ko`olaupoko Watershed Management Plan, 2) RAM’s proposed move, and 3) Pulama Bypass. If these presentations are not ready, the Board may take up the Ohulehule Conservation Reserve and/or the H.S. Castle Foundation grants.

 

APPROVAL OF JULY 13, 2011 REGULAR MEETING MINUTES: There being no objections, Luersen moved and Machado seconded that the Kahalu`u Neighborhood Board No. 29 APPROVED the July 13, 2011 regular meeting minutes as corrected, 8-0-2 (AYES: Geboski, Kaluhiwa, LeVasseur, Longfellow, Loo, Machado, Nelson, and Salas; NAYS: None; ABSTENTIONS: Henkin and Obayashi). The corrections are as follows:

 

·         Page 2, 5th paragraph, delete the word “as” and replace with “his” after “Hee expressed.”

·         Throughout, the word “NAYES” should be corrected to read “NAYS”.

·         Page 6, item 3, second sentence add after DLNR, “…was enhanced by the operation over the weekend.”

 


 

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

 

Water and Environment – There were no updates to report.

 

Transportation and Safety – Member LeVasseur reported a letter was sent to HDOT regarding safety concerns at the intersection of Johnson Road and Kamehameha Highway.  HDOT is evaluating the situation.

 

Parks and Recreation – There were no updates to report.

 

Planning – The following were discussed:

 

·         Widening of Kahekili Highway – Member Luersen reported she participated in a workshop on the widening of Kahekili Highway and encouraged members to track HDOT’s progress on this project. This is also an opportunity to create bikeways and increase transit options. A follow-up meeting will likely occur in October 2011.

·         Variance Application – An application was filed for a zoning variance to retain a third floor at a Lulani Street dwelling. The zoning is R-10 and Preservation. The non-conforming use is in the Preservation zoned area. The hearing is Thursday, August 18, 2011. Concerned residents may testify at that time.

 

Preservation of Hawaiian Heritage – Member Kaluhiwa raised concerns about customers from the boat tours from He`eia Kea Park walking on the reef at Kealohi Point.  She will investigate further.

 

Military/Civilian Affairs Liaison – There were no updates to report.

 

Legislation and School – There were no updates to report.

 

ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned 9:55 p.m.

 

 

Submitted By:   Gloria J.P. Gaines, Neighborhood Assistant

 

Reviewed By:     David Henkin, Chair

 

 

Last Reviewed: Thursday, September 08, 2011