Senator Josh Green, and Representatives Denny Coffman and Cindy Evans knew they had to respond to the public outcry over the closure of the public access road along the coast that leads to the Kohanaiki Beach area.
Little did they know the extent of the publics unrest. Thousands of signatures were gathered in a matter of weeks, and hundreds showed up in person to let their representatives know, that either NELHA opens the gate, or the people would open it themselves.
Some of the people wanted to go down that night and open it, others suggested the next day, everybody agreed that if it was not open in a 30 day period, it would be time to act.
Ron Baird, the CEO of NELHA, has given a number of reasons for closing the gate, but none of them really seem to hold water, adn none of them seem to justify the manner in how it was done.
Giving just two weeks notice, Baird ordered that the gate be locked for good.
It is the general sentiment that he should not onlly open the gate, but resign.
Needless to say the public is upset, and unruly to say the least. 30 days seems like the longest people will wait for NELHA to respnd.
A lot of credit most be given to Josh Green for holding this informal meeting to gather information. The Senator and two Representatives took a lot of heat from the public, who sometimes blamed them for the gate being locked. The truth of the matter, is that they were there to gather information to find a remedy.
That remedy appears to be to open the gate, restore access, and replace Baird with someone who has more respect for the residents that call Kohanaiki their second home.
Big Island Live broadcast the whole meeting live, and is playing reruns periodically. This is a short edited version of a two and a half hour public outcry.
Filed under: Announcements, Big Island, Community, County Council, Environment, Hawaii, Hawaiian, Kona, Legal, Rumors, State Affairs | Tagged: Angel Pilago, Big Island, Cindy Evans, Denny Coffman, Hawaii, Josh Green, Kohanaiki, NELHA, OTEC, Pine Trees, Ron Baird, Shoreline Access | 2 Comments »