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  • Palolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 Minutes Posted For LAST MEETING (FEBRUARY 10, 2016) Meeting

With Permission / Courtesy of: City and County of Honolulu Neighborhood Commission Office

Palolo Neighborhood Board No. 6




CALL TO ORDER: Chair Loren Jerlow called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. A quorum was established with 10 members present. Note -- This 13-member board requires seven (7) members to establish a quorum and to take official Board action.

Board Members Present: Ken Aronowitz, Andrew Chung, Randolph Hack, Marvin Heskett, Paul Holtrop, Loren Jerlow, Beverly Mau, Darlene Nakayama, Earl Shiraki, and Michael Weinstein.

Board Members Absent: Gladys Gerlich-Hayes and Stephen Maybir.

Guests: Catherine P. Awakuni Colón (Governor David Ige's Representative/Director, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs); Ross Sasamura (Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative/Director, Department of Facility Maintenance); Councilmember Ann Kobayashi and Cliff Kaneshiro (Councilmember Kobayashi's Office); Dominic Dias (Board of Water Supply); James Nekota; Shinsuke Uehara; Eleanor Tanaka; Carol Azama; Ron Laiker; Janice Laiker; Dennis Wolfe; Teresa Wolfe; Frank Farm; Kyle Kawamoto; Lieutenant Maurice Asato and Sergeant Clifford Ramson (Honolulu Police Department); Firefighter I John Mitsuhashi (Honolulu Fire Department); Emelia Rutkowski; Steve Rutkowski; Robert Farm; Tom Fee; Scott Tamayori; Candy Tamayori; Jenny Welham; Christa Brown-Inglis; Lucille Morelli-Vine; Alex Kendrick; House Speaker Emeritus Calvin Say; Madge Nicolas; Brycen Go; Chris Sayers (City Department of Transportation Services); Robert Kroning (City Department of Design and Constrution); Daniel Alexander; and Risé Doi (Neighborhood Commission Office).


Honolulu Fire Department (HFD): Firefighter I John Mitsuhashi reported the following:

• December 2015 and January 2016 Fire Statistics: In December 2015, there was 1 structure fire, 1 activated alarm, 27 medical emergencies, 2 motor vehicle collisions, 3 mountain rescues, and 1 hazardous material incident. In January 2016, there were no fires, 23 medical emergencies, and 2 mountain rescues.

• Fire Safety Tip: Plug one (1) heat producing appliance into a wall outlet at a time. Major appliances such as refrigerators, dryers, and stoves should be plugged directly into a wall outlet. Ensure that electrical work is performed by a licensed electrician.

Honolulu Police Department (HPD): Lieutenant Maurice Asato reported the following: January 2016 Crime Statistics: There were 5 motor vehicle thefts, 12 burglaries, 20 thefts, and 16 unauthorized entries into motor vehicles. There were 6,902 calls for service in District 7.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Pedestrians: Shiraki expressed support for citing pedestrians using cell phones while in crosswalks. Shiraki and another resident also raised a concern that some pedestrians enter the crosswalk when the countdown on the traffic signal has already started. The resident commented that there needs to be more education for pedestrians crossing during the countdown. Shiraki commented that pedestrian citations should be enforced. Sergeant Clifford Ramson noted that the Community Policing Team (CPT) will be notified.

Board of Water Supply (BWS): Dominic Dias circulated a newsletter and reported the following:

• January 2016 Main Break Report: There were no main breaks.

• Free Seed-of-the-Month Program: BWS and the Friends of Halawa Xeriscape Garden are offering visitors a free xeric (dry) seed or seedling of the month at the Halawa Xeriscape Garden. The garden is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

• Halawa Xeriscape Garden Workshops: BWS and the Friends of Halawa Xeriscape Garden continue to offer Saturday workshops that highlight the concept of xeriscaping. A full listing of the xeriscape workshops is available at

Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Water Main Leak: Shiraki raised a concern about a water main leaking near 2416 Holomua Street.

Hearing no objections, Chair Jerlow moved the agenda to item 7F, Community Recognition award.

Community Recognition Award: The Pālolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 recognized Brycen Go for his exemplary service to the community as a CPR instructor. Chair Jerlow noted that Go has taught CPR to over 10,000 people of all ages, from ages 3 to 83. Go is one of the youngest certified American Heart Association instructors in the state.

Chair Jerlow returned the agenda to item 3, Filling of Vacant Board Seat.

FILLING OF VACANT BOARD SEAT: There were no nominations to fill the vacant board seat in Subdistrict 1. This item was deferred to the next meeting.


Councilmember Ann Kobayashi -- Councilmember Kobayashi provided a newsletter and reported the following:

• Budget Committee Meeting: There was a budget committee meeting today regarding revising the class A residential property tax. The bill will be moving onto a second reading.

• Pālolo Playground: The new playground equipment was installed, but there is still more space for equipment. Send suggestions to Councilmember Kobayashi's office.

• Moped Bill: Councilmember Kobayashi noted that moped noise is problematic in many neighborhoods, and announced there will be a hearing on a moped noise bill tomorrow, Thursday, February 11, 2016.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

1. Mahalo: Aronowitz thanked Councilmember Kobayashi for the Pālolo playground equipment. Shiraki thanked Councilmember Kobayashi for not wanting to raise the property tax.

2. Potholes: Shiraki noted there are potholes on Mananui Place.

3. Food Pantry: Chair Jerlow raised a concern that there is evidence of squatting at the Food Pantry and it has become a dump site. A resident reported that she had written to the Catholic diocese, St. Patrick's Church, and to Sacred Hearts to resolve the issue, but there has been no response. The resident noted that the owner of the property should be fined.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative: Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM) Director Ross Sasamura reported the following: Kilihune Place: There was a previous concern regarding drivers having difficulty seeing oncoming traffic on Pālolo Avenue from Kilihune Place. The City Department of Transportation Services (DTS) had conducted an investigation and site inspection that did not reveal any unusual conditions which indicate that motorists are experiencing difficulties exiting Kilihune Place onto Pālolo Avenue. However, there resident at 1754 Pālolo Avenue had overgrown plants obstructing the intersection, and HPD has been asked to notify the resident to comply with the provisions of the traffic code.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

1. Violation: Holtrop asked and Sasamura clarified that the resident was in violation of the Revised Ordinances of Honolulu, Section 15-24.6(a), Obstruction of Intersection, due to existing plant growth.

2. Traffic Light: Shiraki noted that the traffic light on 10th Avenue and Waialae Avenue is working well.

3. Food Pantry: Chair Jerlow showed Sasamura pictures of the poor condition of the Food Pantry property site.

4. Road Resurfacing: Resident Frank Farm commented that near 1701 9th Avenue there is a trench patch that is substandard.

5. Neighborhood Watch Signs: Resident Madge Nicolas asked about getting replacement "Neighborhood Watch" signs that wrap around the utility poles. Sasamura will follow up on an installation date for the signs. Nicolas asked and Sasamura answered that there are multiple owners of utility poles, including the Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO), cable companies, and the City. Sasamura noted that the rules of posting sings on the pole are set by the pole owner.

6. Community Policing Team: Sasamura advised the Board to contact the HPD Community Policing Team (CPT) in District 7 to work with the community on graffiti clean-up at the Food Pantry property.

7. Traffic Study: Resident Scott Tamayori asked for the results of the DTS investigation at Kilihune Place. Tamayori asked and Chair Jerlow answered that although the traffic study at Kilihune Place had already been completed, the Board could still write a letter in support of the study.

Governor David Ige's Representative: Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Director Catherine P. Awakuni Colón circulated a newsletter and reported the following:

• Governor's Newsletter: Colón noted that there were excerpts of the State of the State address in the newsletter.

• Preschool Open Doors Enrollment: Preschool Open Doors Enrollment will be held from Monday, February 1, 2016 to Thursday, March 31, 2016. Visit or call 791-2130 or toll-free at 1-800-746-5620 for more information.

• Legislative Session: Colón encouraged the public to participate in the legislative process and policy making.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Superferry: Shiraki expressed support to bring back the Superferry.

State House Speaker Emeritus Calvin Say -- Speaker Emeritus Say circulated a newsletter and reported the following:

• House Bill (HB) 1753: HB 1753 relating to regulation of mopeds is moving through the Judiciary Committee.

• Road Resurfacing: Road resurfacing in Palolo is about 75 percent complete.

• Speed Signs: Speed signs were installed on Waiamao Road.

• Adopting a Park: Speaker Emeritus Say left fliers regarding information for community members interested in adopting a City & County of Honolulu park.

• Financial Fraud Seminar: There will be a financial fraud seminar held on Wednesday, March 2, 2016 at Ala Moana Hotel Hibiscus Ballroom from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

1. Introduction: Sasamura introduced Director of the City Department of Design and Construction (DDC), Robert Kroning. Speaker Emeritus Say asked about repaving private roads.

2. Street Cleaning: Nicolas asked if there could be street cleaning after the roads are repaved.

3. Manhole Cover: A resident noted that there is a manhole cover at the base of Lai Road.

4. Road Repaving: Kroning noted that the road repaving is an ongoing project and 9th Avenue has not been accepted yet. Holtrop noted that 9th Avenue was one of the first roads to be repaved and most of the street is in good condition. Holtrop asked that debris from the repaving be pushed to the curb. Holtrop also noted that Ahe Street needs to be repaved. Kroning noted that Ahe Street is on the list of roads to be repaved. Speaker Emeritus Say commended the City on the road repaving.

5. Gutters: A resident raised a concern that flooding occurs when gutters are removed on Kalua Place.

6. Albizia Trees: A resident raised a concern that the City Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) was cutting the grass, but not the albizia trees on Waiamao Road. The resident noted that albizia trees are a safety hazard.

7. University of Hawaii (UH) Tuition: Shiraki asked why Speaker Emeritus Say was against raising the tuition at UH. Speaker Emeritus Say answered that he believes that the Board of Regents should be in charge of the operations of the UH system, not the State Legislature. Speaker Emeritus Say also noted that UH had asked for the state constitutional amendment regarding autonomy of UH 14 years ago, citing accreditation as the reason.

8. Bulky Items: Resident Lieve Wheeler raised a concern regarding bulky item pickup and trash remaining on the sidewalks and streets. Wheeler suggested having extra trash cans. Speaker Emeritus Say noted that bulky item pickup is once a month, and commented that bulky items and illegal dumping have been issues in the community for years. Chair Jerlow asked and Wheeler noted that bulky items have been noticeable on Pālolo Avenue in front of the Laundromat. Sasamura noted that trash cans are assigned to each household and extra trash cans may be provided upon request. Another resident noted that several homeowners on the 1900 block of 10th Avenue should be fined for leaving bulky items out. Sasamura advised residents to call the City Department of Environmental Services (ENV) refuse division if there are concerns regarding trash and public safety.

9. Recycling: Nicolas asked if there could be recycling bins placed at the bottom of Lai Road. Sasamura explained that many residents in Pālolo Valley have automated collection, but some residents still have manual collection. Sasamura noted that residents with manual collection do not have the same bins as those with automated collection. Sasamura explained that recycling bins without ownership can be a problem, and recommended that residents with manual collection use recycling centers.

Senator Les Ihara, Jr.: No representative was present; no report was provided.

RESIDENTS'/COMMUNITY CONCERNS: Trees to Seas: Wheeler announced there will be a Pālolo Valley cleanup organized by Trees to Seas held on Sunday, February 28, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at 3398 Kalua Road.

PRESENTATION: Chris Sayers from the City Department of Transportation Services (DTS) delivered a presentation about the installation of a bike lane on 10th Avenue. Sayers reported that bike lane was part of the Oahu bike plan. Sayers noted that the narrower road lanes will reduce speeding and there will be no removal of parking. Sayers reported that the bike lane is only one-way uphill, and bicyclists going downhill will be with regular traffic. Sayers noted that plans of the bike lane have been presented before the neighborhood board a couple of years before.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed:

1. Opposition: Resident Ivan Hoe expressed that he had opposed the bike lane in beginning and is still unsure if he supports the bike lane. Hoe asked why the bike lane was selected for 10th Avenue and raised concerns about parking. Hoe asked and Sayers noted that everyone needs to be careful when pulling out of driveways, noting that bicyclists will be there regardless of a bike lane. Shiraki expressed opposition, noting that the roads are too narrow.

2. Support: Resident Tom Phee expressed support for the bike lane and was pleased to hear that the narrower road lanes will reduce speeding.

3. Visitors: Resident Frank Farm asked if the bike lane was intended for residents or visitors. Sayers answered that the bike lane is intended mostly for residents and students commuting to UH. Farm asked how many people are bicycling in the community. Sayers did not have a number, but noted that the number of bicyclists will likely increase.

4. Concerns: Farm raised concerns regarding the bike lane causing traffic and drivers parking in the bike lane. Sayers noted that the parking lane is eight (8)-feet wide and oversized vehicles will need to find other parking.

5. Transportation: Resident Daniel Alexander expressed support that the bike lane will give residents another transportation option.

6. Visibility: Resident Carol Azama raised a concern about hitting bicyclists.

7. Notification: Resident Eleanor Tanaka raised a concern that she did not know about the bike lane and that she will not be able to see the bicyclists when getting out of her car. Tanaka noted that money spent on the bike lane could be spent on something else. Kroning noted that the bike lane is part of the Complete Streets plan to make roads safer for everyone. Kroning apologized that the notification about the bike lane was over a year ago, but a reminder was not sent. Kroning reminded residents that roads are for all vehicles, including bikes. Sayers also added that only lines are being added and the width of the road is not changing.

8. Comfort: Nicolas asked and Sayers answered that a bike lane encourages bicycling and provides space and comfort for bicyclists.

9. Mopeds: A resident asked and Kroning answered that mopeds are allowed in bike lanes, but not protected bike lanes or bike paths.

10. Education: Aronowitz asked and Sayers answered that there are several ongoing programs to educate the public about bicyclists.

11. Reflectors: Mau commented that she does not feel safer with narrower lanes. Mau raised a concern regarding the reflector lines on the road, Sayers noted that the reflectors on the road will be removed. Sayers noted that when the final striping goes in, the lanes will not be confusing.

12. Data: Nakayama asked for quantitative data regarding the bike lane. Nakayama noted that she rarely sees bicyclists in Pālolo Valley. Sayers noted that the bike lane is a Priority 1 project, and that people use bikes lanes once installed.

13. Safety: Heskett expressed support for the bike lane and noted that as a bicyclist, a bike lane will help bicyclists feel safer. Resident James Nekota also expressed support for the bike lane.


APPROVAL OF THE WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2015, REGULAR MEETING MINUTES: The regular meeting minutes for Wednesday, December 9, 2015 were ADOPTED UNANIMOUSLY as amended, 10-0-0 (Aye: Aronowitz, Chung, Hack, Heskett, Holtrop, Jerlow, Mau, Nakayama, Shiraki, and Weinstein; No: None; Abstain: None). Amendments included the following:

• Page 3: Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Tree Trimming: Should read "Trimming," and "Chair Jerlow asked about the grass next to the Palolo Valley sign and asked if the grass is maintained by the City. Director Sasamura answered in the affirmative and noted that grass trimming is under the responsibility of the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), Division of Urban Forestry (DUF). Chair Jerlow asked about the timing of the grass trimming so residents can do it themselves on a complementary schedule."

• Page 3: Strike out "Chair Jerlow asked and Director Sasamura answered that the area where the planter exist is under the responsibility of the abutting property owner or the Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM). Director Sasamura added that there is currently a staffing shortage within DFM for groundskeepers to maintain planter areas. Director Sasamura noted that there are city programs such as the Malama O Ka Aina program that allows individuals to adopt a City property to help the city maintain the property."

Moped Noise Mitigation Bill Resolution: Chung read background information and recommendations relating to reducing moped noise. A copy of the Board's resolution requesting the Honolulu City Council and the Hawaii State Legislature to enact laws that reduce excessive moped noise can be found at the end of this set of minutes.

Holtrop moved and Shiraki seconded to adopt the resolution requesting the Honolulu City Council and the Hawaii State Legislature to enact laws that reduce excessive moped noise. The motion was ADOPTED UNANIMOUSLY as amended, 10-0-0 (Aye: Aronowitz, Chung, Hack, Heskett, Holtrop, Jerlow, Mau, Nakayama, Shiraki, and Weinstein; No: None; Abstain: None).

REPORTS: Treasurer's Report: Hack read the financial statement and reported a remaining balance of $211.78. The report was filed.

ANNOUNCEMENTS: Nicolas reported that there was a meeting at Jarett Middle School two (2) years ago regarding the bike lane and traffic calming measures and there were 15 people in attendance. Madge commented that someone was supposed to present to the Board, and Hack noted that a presenter did deliver a presentation to the Board.

ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 9:12 p.m.

Submitted by: Risé Doi, Public Relations Assistant

Reviewed by: Amanda Ehe, Neighborhood Assistant

Finalized by: Loren Jerlow, Chair


WHEREAS, there are more than 36,000 registered mopeds on Oahu; and

WHEREAS, neighborhood boards across Oahu have reported numerous complaints about excessive moped noise in their communities over the years; and

WHEREAS, excessive moped noise negatively impacts citizens' quality of life, as well as the visitor experience, both essential to our state's economic vitality; and

WHEREAS, the majority of excessive vehicle noise is generated by moped owners modifying their engine and/or muffler due to a lack of sufficient control measures for this vehicle type; and

WHEREAS, it is currently illegal to modify a moped exhaust system that increases its noise above the original manufacturer equipment, but existing fines are negligible and there is no law allowing officers the ability to submit mopeds to inspections when there is reasonable cause to believe there is a violation; and

WHEREAS, mopeds are not required to display clearly identifiable license plates and, consequently, are difficult for concerned citizens to report them on infractions of law; and

WHEREAS, the State Department of Transportation has adopted administrative rules to regulate moped safety inspections, which include within the scope excessive noise from exhaust systems, for counties that make them mandatory; and

WHEREAS, the City and County of Honolulu does not require moped safety inspections, although its City Council has introduced Bill 83 (2015) to require such inspections; now, therefore

BE IT RESOLVED, the Pālolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 requests the Honolulu City Council to adopt Bill 83 (2015), and the state legislature to pass legislation, to require annual safety inspections of mopeds; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the Board requests the state legislature to authorize police departments the ability to require moped owners to submit their vehicle to an inspection if there is reasonable cause to believe it is unsafe or not equipped as required by law, comparable to requirements for other motorized vehicles using public roadways; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the Board requests the state legislature to increase the fines for violations of motor and muffler modifications exceeding the manufacturer limits; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the Board requests the state legislature to statutorily distinguish mopeds from bicycles, such that mopeds shall be required to display a clearly identifiable license plate, similar in size to motorcycles, as part of their registration; and

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that copies of this resolution be forwarded to the Mayor and members of the City Council of the City and County of Honolulu; the Director of the Department of Transportation Services, House members in Districts 17-51; Senators in Districts 9-25, the Director of the State Department of Transportation, and the Chairs of the Neighborhood Boards.


Andrew H.D.T Chung

DATE OF INTRODUCTION: February 10, 2016

This resolution was ADOPTED UNANIMOUSLY at the February 10, 2016 Pālolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 regular meeting, 10-0-0 (Aye: Aronowitz, Chung, Hack, Heskett, Holtrop, Jerlow, Mau, Nakayama, Shiraki, and Weinstein; No: None; Abstain: None).

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