Commentary – Saving The Ala Kahakai “Kings” Trail

We are asking for everyones support on this issue and make aware of what is happening here.

The Ala Kahakai “Kings” trail starts from the Puna district to the northern end of Kohala.  Part of this trail is the Ala Loa trail, meaning “long trail”.  The Ala Loa  trail was added to the National Register of Historic places as number 87001127 in 1987 and then to the State Registry of Historic places as site 10-10-11, 334 on January 14, 1989.

Ala Kahakai trail

This trail runs from Kiholo Bay to Kalahuipaua near Puako.  And Puako has already been bought out by the wealthy and non-Hawaiians.  The Kings trail continues further north by Upolu point near Mo’okini Heaiu, which my ancestors were the caretakers.

A section of  “Ala Loa” will be destroyed if we don’t say or do something.  Built by our King and our ancestors, this trail was made so that we may have access to our natural resources.  However, if we don’t do anything, we will have to ask permission from the developers to have access. It is currently our right to access this trail anytime.

Please take the time to read and understand why this has significant cultural concerns (including burial sites) and value regarding the Ala Loa trail on the moku of Hawai’i. This transaction by the County Council was deviant, intentionally hiding, not following the appropriate process, no community input and cultural archeological research conducted (locally).  When will it end?  Until we have nothing left?

There is a County Council meeting regarding Res. 140-13 on December 17, 2013 and would like your support to oppose the passage of this resolution.  The time for the hearing will be available on Thursday 12/12/13.  If you cannot attend, please submit your testimony at  counciltestimony@co.hawaii.hi.us

Mahalo nui loa no ka mea a pau

L. Lahilahi DeSoto-McCollough

Resolution 140-13: Kohala Kai LLC threatens public and traditional ala loa use and should stay in Committee until the issues are addressed and resolved.  

FACT: The ala loa trail provides public access along West Hawaii’s shoreline and is a traditional, native Hawaiian resource.

THREAT:  If the County Council passes Resolution 140-13, a dangerous precedent in favor of exclusive, private coastal development will be set as Kohala Kai LLC is approved to destroy a segment of the ala loa trail. Your rejection of Resolution 140-13 must be voiced before  the Next  County Council meeting 12/17/13, send in testimony or testify in person at any satellite office

EFFORTS:  Representatives from the North Kohala Community Access Group, the NKCDP Action Committee, neighboring Kailapa homestead, and E Mau Na Ala Hele have all requested that public coastal access easements be located on the historic ala loa trail. Public testimonies before the Finance Committee on December 3rd unanimously disapproved of Resolution 140-13.

ISSUES:

The Planning Department failed to identify the jeep road at Kohala Kai as the ala loa.

Kohala Kai LLC and the Planning Department apparently ignored the North Kohala Community Development Plan which calls for the ala loa and traditional trails for shoreline access.

Kohala Kai LLC’s public parking, supposedly “in close proximity to the mauka-makai trail,” is provided 100yds away from the trail and requires a 160ft walk along the highway.

Kohala Kai LLC constructed a shoreline trail away from the ala loa prior to a Public Access Plan and Planning Department review and approval, in violation of the SMA. Location of the trail lacked any public review.

The Planning Department allowed Kohala Kai LLC a private golf cart path over the known ala loa as well as a recreational center and canoe “hale” for exclusive residential uses, even though they are not included in Kohala Kai LLC’s permit applications. The proposed hale site is a known significant archeological site.

Trail maintenance responsibility was shifted from Kohala Kai LLC and its successors to the County and the size from “a minimum 6-foot wide walking area with a graded earthen surface” to “a cleared or constructed earthen surface.

No easements preserve reasonable access to cultural, historic and burial sites.

ACTIONS REQUIRED BEFORE EASEMENT CAN BE APPROVED:

Survey of ala loa trail/jeep road alignment and registration with Historic Sites Preservation Division and incorporated into the Ala Kahakai  National Historic trail

Revision of Public Access Plan and subdivision plat maps for all three subdivisions to show the ala loa as the public access.

Revision of Public Access Plan to meet recommendations of the SMA permits and to include native tenant rights and traditional and customary practices, including ocean access at the canoe landing.

Withdraw approvals for golf cart path and private clubhouse.

Per original agreement, Kohala Kai LLC be responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the vertical and lateral public access areas.

Planning Dept. and County Council to work with the CDPs.

CONTACT YOUR COUNCIL:   counciltestimony@co.hawaii.hi.us

District 1: Valerie Poindexter  (808) 961-8018vpoindexter@co.hawaii.hi.us District 6: Brenda Ford (808) 323-4277bford@co.hawaii.hi.us
District 2: J Yoshimoto (808) 961-8272jyoshimoto@co.hawaii.hi.us District 7: Dru Mamo Kanuha (808) 323-4267dkanuha@co.hawaii.hi.us
District 3: Dennis Onishi (808) 961-8396donishi@co.hawaii.hi.us District 8: Karen Eoff (808) 323-4280 keoff@co.hawaii.hi.us
District 4: Greggor Ilagan (808) 965-2712gilagan@co.hawaii.hi.us District 9: Margaret Wille (808) 887-2069 mwille@co.hawaii.hi.us
District 5: Zendo Kern (808) 961-8263zkern@co.hawaii.hi.us

Jason Scott Lee Featured in Effort to Save the Palila, a Highly Endangered Hawaiian Bird

Jason Scott Lee, star of 25 motion pictures and raised in Hawai‘i, has lent his voice to a new public service announcement aimed at helping to save the highly endangered Palila (Loxioides bailleui). This bird is found only in a small patch of mamane forest on Mauna Kea volcano on Hawai‘i Island.

[youtube=http://youtu.be/UkWdixe-8oU]

The Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resource’s Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) and American Bird Conservancy (ABC) have initiated a new outreach campaign that features the PSA which began airing statewide this week, and which will also be available soon for viewing at: RestoreMaunaKea.org. Lee is the voice of the Palila in this brief overview describing the causes for the bird’s declining population and management efforts to help save it.

“Not many people are familiar with what a Palila is and why they are worth saving. That’s because they live in remote and rugged terrain that few people ever visit,” said Robert Stephens, Coordinator for DOFAW’s Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project.

The Palila is a gorgeous, unique Hawaiian treasure, but unfortunately not enough people are aware of its precarious situation. We believe educating people about the importance of this species and the threats we are managing today, will build local and national support for the actions necessary to preserve this bird for future generations. --  Chris Farmer, American Bird Conservancy’s Science Coordinator for Hawai‘i.  Photo by R. Kohley.

The Palila is a gorgeous, unique Hawaiian treasure, but unfortunately not enough people are aware of its precarious situation. We believe educating people about the importance of this species and the threats we are managing today, will build local and national support for the actions necessary to preserve this bird for future generations. — Chris Farmer, American Bird Conservancy’s Science Coordinator for Hawai‘i. Photo by R. Kohley.

“What makes Palila special is that they are a classic example of the spectacular evolutionary process that occurred in the remoteness of the Hawaiian Islands. They survived in the dry forests for thousands of years by adapting to a food source, mamane pods, that is toxic to other wildlife. Palila belong here and are one of the things that makes Hawai‘i one of the most amazing places on the planet.”

In January 2014, a 9 x 12-foot mural featuring Palila and mamane will be completed for display on a prominent building in downtown Hilo, the county seat and largest city on the island.

The Palila has been loved by Hawaiians since ancient times and, along with other native species, they formed the environment that influenced the formation of a unique culture. Queen Emma visited Mauna Kea in the early 1880s, and a series of mele (chants) commemorate the event, including one describing the memorable song of Palila (from Nogelmeier 2001, He Lei no Emalani: Chants for Queen Emma Kaleleonalani).

“E aha ana lâ ‘Emalani – “What is Emmalani doing there?
I ka wai kapu a Lilinoe  – At the sacred water of Lilinoe?
E nanea, e walea a‘e ana – She is relaxing and she is enjoying
I ka hone mai a ka palila – The soothing song of the palila,
Oia manu noho Kuahiwi” – Those birds that dwell upon the Mountain.”

The population of the Palila, a Hawaiian honeycreeper, has declined 66 percent in the past decade, with fewer than 2,200 birds currently left. The Palila’s downward population slide is a result of habitat degradation, predation, and severe drought conditions that are causing reductions in food supply.

With critical support from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is replacing the fence that encircles the majority of Palila critical habitat on Mauna Kea to prevent sheep and goats on adjacent lands from entering protected areas, while also removing the non-native ungulates from within the fence that destroy the native forests. Photo by Robert Stephens, Coordinator for DOFAW’s Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project

With critical support from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is replacing the fence that encircles the majority of Palila critical habitat on Mauna Kea to prevent sheep and goats on adjacent lands from entering protected areas, while also removing the non-native ungulates from within the fence that destroy the native forests. Photo by Robert Stephens, Coordinator for DOFAW’s Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project

The native mamane and naio forests upon which the Palila depends have been degraded by non-native feral sheep, goats, cattle, and hybrid mouflon sheep over the past 200 years. The Palila once lived across most of the Island of Hawai‘i, but its range has shrunk to roughly 5 percent of its historical size. Other threats include long-term drought influenced by climate change, non-native, feral cats and mongooses that prey on adults and nestlings, fire, and invasive non-native plants. In a series of court orders beginning in 1979, the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawai‘i ruled that to prevent the bird’s extinction, the Department of Land and Natural Resources must permanently remove non-native ungulates (grazing mammals) from the Palila’s designated Critical Habitat on Mauna Kea through all necessary means, including fencing and aerial hunts.

“The Department of Land and Natural Resources is committed to protecting and conserving Hawai‘i’s unique natural, cultural and historic resources which are held in public trust for current and future generations of the people of Hawai‘i nei. We hope our children’s children will be able to know the soothing song of the Palila,” said William Aila, DLNR Chairperson.

DOFAW, with critical support from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is replacing the fence that encircles the majority of Palila critical habitat on Mauna Kea to prevent sheep and goats on adjacent lands from entering protected areas, while also removing the non-native ungulates from within the fence that destroy the native forests. In addition, DOFAW, the Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project, ABC, and hundreds of local volunteers are restoring and replanting Mauna Kea’s mamane forest, which Palila depend upon for about 90% of their diet.

“The Palila is a gorgeous, unique Hawaiian treasure, but unfortunately not enough people are aware of its precarious situation,” said Chris Farmer, American Bird Conservancy’s Science Coordinator for Hawai‘i. “We believe educating people about the importance of this species and the threats we are managing today, will build local and national support for the actions necessary to preserve this bird for future generations.”

40 Students Get Food Poisoning at Oahu Elementary School

The Hawaii State Departments of Education (DOE) and Health (DOH) are conducting an investigation to determine what caused several Waipahu Elementary students to become ill today shortly after lunch.

DOE Release

About 40 students were identified as being sick with symptoms that may indicate food poisoning starting at about 1:15 p.m. Affected students were treated on campus by Emergency Medical Services personnel and transported to area hospitals for further evaluation.

The DOE will be providing temperature logs and a sample lunch to DOH officials for analysis. Officials will also investigate outside factors such as any food students and staff may have brought to the campus, or whether anyone came to school sick. Nearly 1,150 students attend Waipahu Elementary.

Meals served at Hawaii’s public schools adhere to strict state and federal food safety guidelines.

“The safety and wellbeing of our students are paramount,” said School Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “Our food services branch is collaborating with state health officials to pinpoint the source of today’s outbreak. We thank parents for their patience and we wish all students a speedy recovery.”

Parents who observe their child showing symptoms of being sick are asked to contact his or her doctor and notify the school.

 

Big Island Police Looking for Man that Ran Over His Girlfriend With Car in Domestic Dispute

Hawaiʻi Island police are investigating a domestic violence incident that was reported Monday night (December 9).

Justin Lee

Justin Lee

A 41-year-old Hilo woman reported that between 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Monday, she was involved in an argument with her boyfriend, 35-year-old Justin Lee, at their Hilo home. As the argument escalated, he reportedly ran over her with a car and then fled on foot.

The victim was taken by private vehicle to Hilo Medical Center with serious injuries and then transferred to a Honolulu hospital for further treatment. Her condition remains unchanged.

Lee is described as a bald local male, 5-foot-8 with a heavy build, brown eyes and a tan complexion. He has a mole on the left side of his chin and numerous tattoos on the back of his head, neck and arms as well as large words tattooed where his eyebrows should be.

In addition, Lee has three outstanding warrants for his arrest, including a no-bail warrant.
Police ask anyone with information about this incident or the suspect’s whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or contact Detective Jefferson Grantz at 961-8810 or jgrantz@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

UPDATE:

Hawaiʻi Island police have arrested 35-year-old Justin Lee, who was wanted in connection with a domestic violence incident Monday night (December 9) in Hilo.

Lee turned himself in at the Hilo police station at 8:15 p.m. Tuesday (December 10).

He was arrested on suspicion of first-degree assault and second-degree reckless endangering and is being held at the Hilo police cellblock while detectives continue the investigation.

He was also arrested and charged with bail jumping, contempt of court and violating terms of release.

Governor Abercrombie Goes To White House – Voices Hawaii’s Priorities on President’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience

Ensuring the State of Hawaii has a strong voice in the national discussion on climate change, Gov. Neil Abercrombie today shared Hawaii’s unique perspective as an island state at the first meeting of President Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience. The meeting was held at the White House’s Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, D.C.

Governor Voices Hawaii’s Priorities on President’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience

Governor Voices Hawaii’s Priorities on President’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience

The President established the task force to advise his administration on how the federal government can respond to the needs of communities nationwide that are currently dealing with or anticipate extreme weather, sea level rise, and other impacts of climate change. This first meeting focused on building climate resilience into efforts to better prepare for and recover from natural disasters. In addition, task force members had the opportunity to share their expertise and experience in implementing climate preparedness measures, and begin to consider recommendations for the President.

Named to the task force last month, Gov. Abercrombie attended along with Deputy Chief of Staff Blake Oshiro and Hawaii State Sustainability Coordinator Jacqueline Kozak Thiel. Gov. Abercrombie’s congressional experience (including serving on the Armed Forces Subcommittee on Air and Land Forces and as a senior member on the Natural Resources Committee) and ability to provide insight into the needs of the Asia-Pacific were cited as factors in his selection.

Obama administration officials participating in the meeting included: Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs David Agnew, Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx (pictured), Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan, and FEMA Associate Administrator David Miller.

 

Big Island Police Renewing Search for Kamuela Man Wanted for Questioning in Connection With Theft Investigation

Hawaiʻi Island police are renewing their request for information about a 24-year-old Kamuela man wanted for questioning in connection with a theft investigation.

HPDBadge
Brandon Kelii Paulino-Pawai is also wanted on a bench warrant for contempt of court.

He is described as 5-foot-10, 190 pounds with brown eyes and black hair, which may have a lighter tint. He has a tattoo on the left side of his neck.

Police ask anyone with information on his whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or contact Detective Levon Stevens at 326-4646, Ext. 275, or lstevens@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Neighborhood Place of Puna Receives $5,811.19 From Ohana Fuels

Ohana Fuels, a TOP TIER brand of Hawaii Petroleum Inc., recently donated $5,811.19 to Neighborhood Place of Puna.

Neighborhood Place of Puna

Ohana Fuels’ generous donation will help Neighborhood Place of Puna provide free weekly home visits to some of the 150 families we serve each year. Neighborhood Place of Puna will work directly with these families, in their homes, to connect them to essential services and resources. We will also teach and model the skills necessary to raise safe and healthy children, simple things like: basic hygiene, money management, effective communication, developmentally appropriate parenting, and the importance of a structured family life, said Paul Normann, Executive Director of Neighborhood Place of Puna.

Ohana Fuels is proud to support Neighborhood Place of Puna, and we know that our donation will be used wisely. Ohana Fuels and Hawaii Petroleum are committed to supporting the communities we serve, and the goal of our Ohana Fuels giving program is to partner with organization that provide services to those in need. We are honored to be able to do this, said Kimo Haynes, President of Hawaii Petroleum Inc.

Ohana Fuels’, a TOP TIER™ brand of Hawaii Petroleum Inc., first priority is “family” and everyone who lives in the neighborhoods they serve. Ohana Fuels is proud to support the organizations and missions important to island families.