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Palolo Neighborhood Board Meeting February 2019 Minutes
REGULAR MEETING MINUTES
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 13, 2019
PALOLO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CAFETERIA
CALL TO ORDER: Vice-Chair Beverly Mau called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Quorum WAS ESTABLISHED with nine (9) members present. Note - This 13-member board requires seven (7) members to establish a quorum and to take official Board action.
Board Members Present: Barbara Armentrout, Will Caron, Frank Farm, Josh Frost, Paul Holtrop, Rusti Onishi, Beverly Mau, Earl Shiraki, and Darlene Nakayama.
Board Members Absent: Randolph Hack, Bradley Rentz, and Jaime Rincon.
Guests: Lieutenant Gary Sunada (Honolulu Police Department); Dominic Diaz (Board of Water Supply); Director Ross Sasamura (Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative/Department of Facility Maintenance); Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Director Catherine P. Awakuni-Colón; Cliff Kaneshiro (Councilmember Ann Kobayashi's Office); House Representative Calvin Say; District Director Jacqueline "Jackie" Conant ( Office of Congressman Ed Case); State Senator Les Ihara; (Residents) Dave Watase, Malie Beach-Smith, James Nekota, Mary Mitsuda, Jesse Christensen, Janet Hsiao, David Pursel, Valerie Pursel, Jackie Carroll, Pritty Borthakur, Dulal Borthakur, Sharon Young Nakaule, Laurie Chivers, Sidney Lynan, Julie Iezzi, Jonalee Ayres, Geroge Moniz, Adam Wong, Jordan Wong, Evan Tector, Richard Sears, Jennifer Woney, Ted Strand, David Youtz, Wilma Youtz, Nona Holmes, Steve Holmes, Avan Low, Rebecca Goldschmidt, Pete Arnold, Carollee Amdel, George Lee, Howard Caires, Tracy Caires, Godron Smith, Sean Seanlan.
CITY MONTHLY REPORTS
Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) - No representative was present; no report was given.
Honolulu Police Department (HPD) - Lieutenant Gary Sunada reported the following:
January 2019 Statistics: There were 4 motor vehicle theft, 14 burglaries, 19 thefts, 18 unauthorized entries into motor vehicles and 6057 calls for service.
Safety Tip - Driving in the Rain: Lieutenant Sunada provided the following safety tips:
o If possible, avoid driving in the rain.
o The road is most dangerous and slick when it is only a little wet, as the oil from vehicles will be more present along the surface.
o In the case of heavy rains, beware of hydroplaning. Monitor speeds and check the maneuverability of your vehicle.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Appreciation: Shiraki expressed appreciation for HPD's commitment to patrolling the community.
Board of Water Supply (BWS): Dominic Diaz reported the following:
Main Breaks - January 2019: Diaz reported one (1) main break fronting 2284 Waiomao Road, which was later repaired.
Detect a Leak Week: Detect A Leak Week: Preserving and protecting our most essential resource, our water, is everyone's responsibility. BWS encourages all residents to check for property leaks and to fix them promptly during Detect-A-Leak Week which is being observed from Monday, March 18, 2109 to Sunday, March 24, 2019. Checking for and repairing property leaks helps save water, lowers your water bill, and prevents potential damage to your home. During Detect-A-Leak Week free toilet leak detection dye tablets will be available to the public during that week at the BWS Public Service Building at 630 South Beretania Street, at all Satellite City Halls, and City Mill locations. For more leak detection information visit www.boardofwatersupply.com or call 748-5041.
Reminders: Deadline for the Water Conservation Week Poster and Poetry contests is Thursday, February 28, 2019. Students' grade kindergarten through 12 are invited to participate and submit a poster or poem expressing the contest theme, "Do Your Part Be Water Smart." For more information, visit www.boardofwatersunply.com/wcwcontests. Last year, after an extensive public outreach program, the BWS Board of Directors approved a new water rate schedule which will help BWS to gradually ramp up pipeline replacement and aims to significantly reduce main breaks. The rate increase will take effect on Monday, July 1, 2019. Full details on the new rate schedule is available atwww.boardofwatersupply.com/waterrates.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Dye Tablets at City Mill: Caron asked and Diaz responded that the dye tablets at City Mall are free as well during the week of March 18, 2019 through March 24, 2019.
2. Inaccurate Reports: Resident Laurie Chivers expressed her concerns with inaccurate water and sewer line break reporting for Waiomao Road and Kuahea Street at Neighborhood Board meetings. Diaz reported that in December there were two (2) reported breaks, commenting that he was familiar with the process of how breaks are recorded into the BWS operation systems database and would take the concern back. Resident Chivers reported that the minutes of the September 2018 and the November 2018 meetings reflect no breaks on Kuahea Street when there were two (2) and three (3) main breaks, respectively. She added that, during the December 2018 meeting, the BWS reported one (1) main break on Kuahea Street when there were actually nine (9) main breaks.
3. Roosters/Chickens: Resident Sharon Young Nakaue expressed noise concerns with audible roosters/ chickens from 3:30 a.m. through the day. She added that their presence in the neighborhood attracts insects such as flies, and other pests, that act as health hazards. (Intended as Residents/Community Concern).
4. Inaccurate Reports (continued): Resident Jullie Iezzi echoed the concerns of Resident Chivers.
5. Monster Homes: Shiraki asked if the BWS would be able to supply water with the influx of monster houses in the community and Diaz responded that the BWS is able to. Diaz commented that he cannot speak to the BWS position on monster houses and deferred similar permitting questions to the Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP).
6. Red Hill: Shiraki expressed his appreciation for the BWS stance on the Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage Tanks.
7. Sewer Replacement on 9th Avenue: Resident James Nekota inquired about the project on 9th Avenue and Diaz responded that there is an ongoing sewer replacement project along 9th Avenue.
Vacancies: Residents inquired about the streets within sub-district 4. No residents volunteered to fill sub-district 4.
Councilmember Ann Kobayashi: Cliff Kaneshiro of Councilmember Anne Kobayashi's Office distributed and summarized their newsletter, which included Council and Committee dates, legislative updates, expanded City service for Drivers License and State ID renewal, and the honoring of two (2) local educators.
Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative: Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM) Director Ross Sasamura reported the following:
Neighborhood Elections: Director Sasamura reported that the deadline to register as a candidate and to vote in the Neighborhood Board elections is Friday, February 15, 2019. Any O‘ahu resident who is 18 years of age can become a candidate. The Neighborhood Board Election will be held online from April 26, 2019 through May 17, 2019. Director Sasamura added that those interested in mobile alerts related to the elections can test "GoNCO" to 95577. For more information, call the Neighborhood Commission Office (NCO) at (808) 768-3705.
??? 70th Mayor's Memorial Day 2019 Poster Contest: Mayor's Memorial Day Poster Contest started on January 8, 2019 and ends on February 26, 2019
o Open to all students, statewide, in grades kindergarten -12th grade;
o Open to all students enrolled in public, private, or charter school, or home-schooled;
o Three age categories - K-4th; 5th-8th, and 9th-12th;
o 1st, 2nd, 3rd place winners will be chosen in each category and winning artwork will be made into posters to encourage the donation of flower lei to be placed on each gravesite at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific ("Punchbowl")
Waiomao Road Blend Line: In response to a repainting request for the line from Makai bound Waiomao Road to 10th Avenue, DFM reported the following: Staff field checked the pavement markings at Waiomao Road and 10th Avenue and confirmed the guide line striping from Waiomao Road onto 10th Avenue is faded. DFM is working with DTS regarding the appropriate color and type of striping (solid or dashed) that should be installed and anticipate completion of the striping work by the end of March 2019.
Striping on Waialae Avenue: In response to a request to revise the striping on Waialae Avenue for the bike lane between 10th Avenue and 11th Avenue to make it clearer to motorists that they may cross over the bike lane when approaching 11th Avenue, The Department of Transportation Services (DTS) reported the following: DTS has completed their investigation. In accordance with the Revised Ordinances of Honolulu, it is legal to cross the bike lane when changing lanes to get into the right turn lane onto 11th Avenue and no changes to the striping are recommended.
Curbing at Waialae Avenue: In response to an installation request for curbing and/or delineators to create a more distinctive way to identify the bump out on Ewa bound Waialae Avenue at the intersection with Koko Head Avenue fronting the Goodwill Store, DTS reported the following: The DTS previously conducted an investigation into the Board's request and issued a work order (reference Paint & Sign Work Order No. 133078) to DFM for the installation of delineators at the Waialae/Koko Head Avenues intersection. Director Sasamura concluded that the work will be in progress.
??? Sewer Capacity Plans: In response to a resident's information request for plans to upgrade sewer capacity serving a residence which would allow her to receive approval of an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) application, the Department of Environmental Services (ENV) reported the following: The City has an on-going sewer construction project, the "Palolo Sewer Relief 9th and 10th Avenue" project, to be completed by the consent decree deadline of June 30, 2020, which addresses high priority sewer rehabilitation needs in this area. Although this project provides a significant improvement for those sewers, the sewer line in the easement between 2460 Lamaka Place and 10th Avenue has an additional capacity limitation which prevents approval of ADU's upstream, affecting 2460 Lamaku Place. This sewer will need additional evaluation work, and we do not have a set schedule at this time for addressing this issue. We also note that the sewer easement is in a known slide area, which will likely impact the available options.
Monster Home Law: In response to requests for an update on the monster house law, DPP reported the following: On Sunday, March 13, 2018, Ordinance 18-6 was signed into law in order to place a moratorium on the issuance of building permits for large detached dwellings (LDDs), popularly referred to as "monster homes". Pursuant to Section 3.D. of Ordinance 18-6, the ordinance does not affect the application for, or issuance of, a building permit for:
o Any development for which a building permit has been lawfully issued by any government agency, and is in effect on the effective date (March 13, 2018) of the ordinance;
o Any development for which a building permit application has been submitted to and accepted as complete by any government agency for processing as of the effective date of the Ordinance; and
o Any development that is not located within a residential zoning district.
Therefore, it may be the case that some of the LDDs currently being constructed were approved prior to the effective date of Ordinance 18-6. All building permit applications for LDDs accepted after March 13, 2018 and subsequent building permits issued for those applications have complied with the regulations of Ordinance 18-6.
Parking at 10th Avenue Preschool: In response to a request for enforcement of parked cars fronting a preschool on 10th avenue during student drop-off time, HPD reported the following: On Tuesday, February 12, 2019, one (1) citation was issued. Officers are aware of the problem and will continue to make checks. Enforcement action will be taken when violations are observed.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Striping on Waialae Avenue: Shiraki clarified Sasamura's report related to the bike lane before 11th Avenue for the residents.
2. Waiomao Road Concerns: Resident Cory Kot requested an updated related to the bump on Waiomao Road, expressing concerns with similar issues Kuahea Street. He echoed Resident Chivers concerns with the inaccurate BWS reports of water main breaks on both streets, adding that night repairs of the mains are disruptive to neighbors.
3. Waiomao Road - DDC Emergency Contract: Director Sasamura responded to the concerns regarding the bump on Waiomao, reporting that the DDC had an emergency contract to blend and transition the bump to allow for easier travel. He reiterated that there will be no excavation of the bump. Resident Kot responded that the work was not effective and that the road and sidewalks are failing. Director Sasamura responded that he would advise the DDC to inspect the quality of the contractor's work.
4. Waiomao Road Concerns (continued): Resident Borthakur expressed her concerns with an approximately four (4) foot hole by the electricity pole on Waiomao Road. She added that the City and County of Honolulu has not been responsive. She reiterated concerns with the condition of the roads and sidewalks on Waiomao Road, and the lack of effective work. She requested a timeline for evaluation and/or repair of the road. Resident Valerie Pursel echoed concerns with the sidewalks on Waiomao Road, adding that water underneath the properties will continue to erode the area. She concluded that closing the road could put residents at risk, especially with the difficulty for emergency vehicles to reach residents along the road. Resident Dulal Borthakur echoed concerns with Waiomao Road, the lack of response from the City and County of Honolulu, the threat of erosion on the area households, and requested a plan and timeline from the City to address the problem.
5. Waiomao Road - City Response: Director Sasamura responded that the City is continuing its ongoing assessment of appropriate improvement projects to address the impact of natural earth movement issues in the area and on the City's infrastructure. Director Sasamura recommended any residents seeking detailed information should inquire with the Department of Corporation Counsel (COR) at 768-5222, as information related to Waiomao Road may be limited due ongoing litigation. Resident Kot asked and Director Sasamura responded that the creation of a timeline may not begin until the City completes the assessment of the situation.
6. Waiomao Road/ Kuahea Street - Geolabs Report: Resident Philip Tom commented that a Geolabs report related to the situation at Waiomao Road/Kuahea Street may be available. He requested publication of the recommendations from the report for the residents of Waiomao Road/Kuahea Street. Director Sasamura responded that residents interested in reports or similar documentation can file a request under the Uniform Information Practices Act to the City and County of Honolulu. Resident Jay Chivers commented that the most recent available report from the City and County of Honolulu is from 2015, adding that later reports are not available to residents filing through the Freedom of Information Act. Resident Chivers asked how they might access this information, as Geolabs may only send information to their client, the City and County of Honolulu. Director Sasamura commented that the Freedom of Information Act is a federal article, clarifying that the process that applies to the City is the similar Uniform Information Practices Act. He commented that the 2015 report is the most recent information available to the public. Director Sasamura commented that he would provide the information to residents to enable them to make the information request to the City, clarifying that he cannot guarantee that any new documentation would become available.
7. Kuahea Street - Retaining Wall: Resident Teren Young of Kuahea Street reported the retaining wall for the City owned parcel above his lot blew out and debris is leaning on the guy wires for the utility pole. He requested that the wall be inspected and repaired to prevent further damage to the utility pole guy wire. Director Sasamura responded that he would follow up with Resident Young to address the concerns. He added that any concerns with power and power interruption ought to be brought to the attention of Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) to address power related concerns.
8. Kuahea Place - Retaining Wall: Resident Ashley Noji expressed concerns with a crumbling retaining wall for Kuahea Place in a property condemned and owned by the State. She commented that this damaged retaining wall caused severe damage to the nearby road and sidewalks. She reported that the impacted sidewalks led to a senior resident breaking their ankle while trying to navigate the surface, while other residents have been seen climbing up the sidewalk. She requested an update for the repair/ stabilization of the retaining wall and repairs to the road. Director Sasamura responded that the DDC began an assessment of that retaining wall on Wednesday, February 13, 2019.
9. Waiomao Road ??? Bump: Shiraki requested immediate work be done to smooth out or remove the bump on Waiomao Road to the satisfaction of the affected residents. Director Sasamura responded that the City has limited capabilities to directly address the issues surrounding Waiomao Road/ Kuahea Street/ Kuahea Place, as they are private roads. He clarified that the City can only conduct surface level work.
Governor David Ige's Representative - Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Director Catherine P. Awakuni-Colón gave highlights from the February 2019 Capitol Connections:
State of the State Address: Director Awakuni-Colón highlighted topics from the Governor's State of the State Address, including Public Preschool Education, Affordable Lease Hold Condominiums on State lands, and adjustments to the Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT).
Legislative Session: Director Awakuni-Colón reminded the community that the Legislative Session began in January 2019 and will continue into May 2019. She encouraged residents to participate, follow, and provide comments and testimonies to the various bills moving through the Legislature.
House Representative Calvin Say - Representative Say distributed a newsletter and reported the following:
Geolabs Report - Waiomao Road and Kuahea Street: Representative Say reported that the issues of Waiomao Road, Kuahea Street, Kuahea Place, and Hilo Place have been known for two (2) to three (3) years. Representative Say commented that the last public Geolabs report is dated from September 9, 2015, and distributed a copy of the Geolabs report to the members of the Board.
Palolo Sewer Project: Representative Say reported that the Palolo Sewer Project from 9th Avenue through Kalua Road to 10th Avenue will impact residents in or using the area for two (2) years.
Kawao Park Homeless: Representative Say reported concerns with homeless individuals dwelling in the abandoned/closed Kawao Park. He commented that State Homeless Coordinator Scott Morishige and City and County of Honolulu Office of Housing (HOU), Executive Director Marc Alexander have been advised.
Homeless at Waialae Avenue - Palolo Avenue: Representative Say reported that, in response to concerns related to a homeless individual located near the intersection of Waialae Avenue and Palolo Avenue, their office contacted the Department of Human Services (DHS), the State Homeless Coordinator, and HOU to address the concern.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Geolabs Report: Armentrout asked and Representative Say advised residents to go to the website to view the Geolabs report. The Neighborhood Assistant responded that he would look into the possibility of posting it on the NCO website with other Palolo Neighborhood Board documents, and would provide a follow up at the next meeting.
2. Noisy Chickens: A resident asked and Representative Say responded that the concerns with noisy chickens near Palolo Avenue have been directed to the Public Housing Authority.
3. Ineffective Response: Resident Chivers expressed frustration with the lack of effective response from the City and the State in assisting the residents of Waiomao Road and Kuahea Street. Resident Chivers requested a copy of the Geolabs report for the residents.
4. Geolabs Report: Resident Noji commented that the earth movement data in the Geolabs report is compiled from solar-powered stakes in the ground, adding that these stakes still collect data. She expressed frustrations with their inability to access current information directly related to severe earth movement that directly impacts the neighborhood due to litigation. Resident Noji commented that she could distribute a .pdf copy of the 2015 report to interested residents.
5. Noise Concern ??? Speed Limit Sign: Resident Jonalee Ayers expressed concerns with the poor placement of a speed limit sign along Waiomao Road leading to collision noise during night road work.
6. Waiomao Road - Kuahea Street: Resident Ayers expressed concerns with the increased likelihood of head-on collisions along Waiomao Road. She explained that the poor and sudden placement of a sign going down Waiomao Road meant to keep residents from driving over the bump causes unfamiliar drivers to turn onto the left lane into oncoming traffic. She requested a line be painted to help guide those drivers. Representative Say recommended the concern be directed to the City and County of Honolulu.
Senator Les Ihara Jr. - No representative was present at this time (see page eight (8) for report).
Congressman Ed Case - District Director Jacqueline "Jackie" Conant of Congressman Case's Office distributed a newsletter and reported the following:
Neighborhood Visits: Director Conant reported that Congressman Case assigned his staff to visit all of the Congressional District (CD) 1 area Neighborhood Boards on a quarterly basis to provide updates and take back community concerns that relate to the federal government.
Congressman Case Appointments: Director Conant discussed the Congressman Case's committee appointments:
o Appropriations: Director Conant reported that Congressman Case was appointed to the Appropriations Committee, which is responsible for funding most functions of the Federal Government. She commented that he will serve on the following sub-committees: Military Construction, Veteran's Affairs, and Related Agencies; Commerce, Science, Justice, and Related Agencies; and Legislative Branch.
o Natural Resources: Director Conant reported that Congressman Case was appointed to the House Natural Resources Committee.
Constituent Concerns: Director Conant commented that the Honolulu Office handles constituent issues. Residents with issues regarding Medicare/Medicaid, Social Security, Veteran's Benefits, or other programs administered by the federal government were advised to call the Honolulu Office.
Congressional Art Competition: Director Conant promoted the Congressional Art Competition for high school students. The winner of the contest will have a paid trip to Washington D.C. and will have their art showcased in Washington D.C.
RESIDENT/ COMMUNITY CONCERNS
Roosters/Chickens: Resident Sharon Young Nakaue expressed noise concerns with audible roosters/ chickens from 3:30 a.m. through the day. She added that their presence in the neighborhood attracts insects such as flies, and other pests, that act as health hazards.
First Life After Prison (LAP) Transitional Program - Executive Director Matthew Taufetee of FirstLAP gave a presentation and reported the following:
The Program: Executive Director Taufetee reported that FirstLAP Transitional Program has been housing and mentoring men coming out of prison for 17 years to help reconnect them to their family, become responsible, and avoid recidivism.
Correctional Justice Task Force: Executive Director Taufetee reported that the Governor selected him to sit on a Correctional Justice Task Force to explore alternative methods to incarceration. He distributed the report to the Board, commenting that FirstLAP has been a model for the task force.
Peace Maker: Executive Director Taufetee commented that he leads a program called Peace Maker which brings volunteers to schools to teach kids about the dangers of alcohol, drugs, and gangs.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Previous Visit: Shiraki asked and Executive Director Taufetee responded that this is not the first time he has come before the Board, commenting that he was encouraged to return to the Board and conduct outreach.
2. Seniors: Executive Taufetee added that their Peace Maker program also has volunteers assisting senior citizens.
3. Church Affiliation: A resident asked and Executive Taufetee that their organization associates with three (3) churches in the community.
REPORTS OF MEMBERS ATTENDANCE AT OTHER CITY MEETINGS
No reports were made.
Proposed Conditional Use Permit, Day Care Center and Meeting Facility, Muryangsa Temple Property
Vice Chair Mau reported that this concern was taken up at the previous meeting and moved to the next item.
Special Committee on Monster Houses - Shiraki reported that the committee held a meeting, commenting that the Committee was created to ensure that the community's opposition to Monster Homes is made clear to the City and County of Honolulu.
Proposed Draft Resolution - Ala Wai Canal Project - Resident Dave Watase reported that he introduced the resolution proposing to defer the Ala Wai Project that the Palolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 will consider. He commented that a presentation was delivered at previous meetings of the Board and welcomed testimony and discussion on the proposal. Vice Chair Mau advised that the Board cannot take action until the following meeting, per the "Action Next Meeting" note on the agenda.
Support - Environmental Impact: Resident Richard Sears expressed support for the resolution to defer the project, citing the environmental impact of the project, and proposed restoring the wetlands of the Ala Wai Golf Course. Resident Sears described his background as an Educational Specialist at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM) since 1995 at Lyon Arboretum, adding that his position has allowed him to study ‘Aihualama Stream, Waikeakua Stream, and Waihi Stream, which feed into Manoa Stream. He clarified that these streams have many similarities to the Palolo streams of Pukele and Wai'oma'o, and both areas are proposed sites for retention basins under the existing Ala Wai Canal Project plan. He added that the areas along the stream banks are archeological, cultural, and sacred sites, citing the pre-contact and restored lo'is along as an example, which could be impacted by the construction of retention basins. He encouraged policy makers to instead understand and restore the natural processes of the wetlands. He commented that damming will not work in a tropical forest, adding that falling trees often clog the streams; he clarified that it is not rain, but the clogging of streams by debris that causes the flooding. He expressed concerns with habitat destruction which could severely impact federal endangered species along the streams, including the Hawaii Black Flying Damselfly. He added that the impact on this federally protected species has not been addressed by the project. He added that other native species threatened by the project include the O'o'puna'kea, which relies on a migratory stream to survive. He added that this species has only returned to these streams due to restoration efforts, and that the construction of retention basins will keep them from returning. He proposed restoring the wetlands of the Ala Wai Golf Course, as sea level rise will inundate the Waikiki area. He commented that restoring the natural wetlands of the golf course could be an alternative solution to the plan.
Opposition - Flooding and Environmental Impact: Resident Kimo expressed opposition to the resolution, citing his experience as a resident adjacent to the impacted rivers, flood risks, and impact of debris downstream. He commented that previous projects that impacted the stream prevented serious flooding that could have destroyed his home. He clarified that the retention basin is designed to catch debris, not dam the water. He added that the impacts of this debris can be seen through the Ala Wai Canal. He requested the Board not adopt the resolution, and to support the project to help prevent flooding from accumulated debris. He added that much of the wildlife that used to live downstream is no longer there due to the litter and pollutants among the debris.
Support - Inaccurate Modeling: Resident Stuart Scott expressed support of the resolution due to the inaccurate storm models used for the project. He cited his experience both studying climate change and participating in the United Nations (U.N.) annual climate change negotiations. He commented that the flaw with the modeling lies with the "100-Year Flood Event". He commented that at this time, that model is outdated. He explained that what was once considered 100 year flooding events will be seen every five (5) to 10 years and continue to become more frequent, adding that "500-Year Flooding Events" will be seen every 10 or 20 years and become more frequent. He commented that the proposed retention basins will not withstand the flooding that climate scientists now expect. He concluded that if the dams are constructed as designed, they will overflow into the community.
Support - Housing Impact: Resident Evan Tector expressed support of the resolution due to the project's impact on housing and rental properties. He expressed his concerns with the reduction of housing and rental properties due to impact of the project, adding that the original proposal never addressed those concerns. He commented that public comments are still not being taken. He urged the Board to adopt the resolution and help ensure that the community has another opportunity to modify the plan.
??? Support - Ala Wai Golf Course Alternative: Resident George Lee expressed support of the resolution, stating his opposition to retention basins in Palolo Valley and support of exploring flood mitigation at the Ala Wai Golf Course. He cited his experience living along Waiomao Stream for 40 years which has not flooded in that time.
??? Support - Stakeholders/Scale/Maintenance: Resident Sydney Lynch expressed her support of the resolution due to the lack of communication with stakeholders, the size of the project, and the maintenance of the basins. She commented that she is a part of an 11 house association, with one (1) targeted for construction of the project. She commented that their association did not receive official notice of the project, despite being community stakeholders. She added that all houses downstream of the proposed sites should have received notices from the State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). She expressed further concerns with the scope of the project. She commented that just one (1) of the proposed retention basins at five (5) foot wide streem will be 30 feet tall, 75 feet wide, 100 feet long to retain up to two (2) football fields of water. She concluded with her concerns with the maintenance of the basins, commenting that these basins will need to be dredged on a consistent basis.
??? Support - Stakeholders/ Project Expansion/ Alternatives: Resident Hughes expressed support of the resolution due to the lack of communication with stakeholders, the expansion of the plan over three (3) years that will negatively impact more residents, and the need to explore alternatives. She commented that in following the project, she observed more properties being impacted by the current scope project than would have been three (3) years before. She commented that other solutions must be explored.
Support - Construction Impacts: Resident David Pursel expressed support for the resolution due to the negative impact of the construction process. Resident Pursel commented that there is no direct access to the stream for construction. He commented that the methods that would need to be employed to move the heavy equipment and materials to the stream to begin construction would be devastating. He added that heavy equipment might displace large rocks/ boulders that would contribute to the damage of potential flooding.
Follow up: Vice Chair Mau expressed appreciation for the testimony received at the meeting and residents in attendance. She reported that the Board will take action at the next meeting.
Hearing no objection, Vice Chair Mau moved to ELECTED OFFICIALS.
Senator Les Ihara: Senator Ihara provided a report related to the Ala Wai Canal Project. Status of the Project: Senator Ihara reported that House leadership held a meeting on Tuesday, February 12, 2019 with Governor Ige, DLNR Director Susanne Case, members of the Army Corps of Engineers affiliated with the project, City and County of Honolulu Managing Director Roy Amemiya, Jr., and other agencies. Senator Ihara reported that the Army Corps of Engineers stated that there is no project, clarifying that their side of the project has been completed. He added that the Army Corps of Engineers reported that the project now lies with the State and City, the local partners, to draft a local partner agreement to move forward. Senator Ihara commented that discussion of this project began several years ago when the consensus at the time was the need to address the 100-year flood event. He commented that the design is only 20% to 30% complete, adding that many property owners were not notified. Senator Ihara commented that at the meeting, there were requests made to ensure no homes be condemned, and for the basins to be adjusted to avoid eminent domain. He commented that the engineers behind the project had designed from geological data, and had not considered the properties of residents. Senator Ihara commented that the State and City have control over whether the project moves forward. He commented that there is no active legislation to allow for the $125 million in necessary funding, clarifying that the $125 million introduced by the Governor's Office is a Grant-in-Aid to the City. He commented that as is, the State would pay the bonds for construction, and the City would maintain the basins. He added that the City and County of Honolulu expressed concerns with the cost of maintenance. Senator Ihara commented that President Trump had indicated an intention to fund the border wall by pulling from emergency appropriations funds, which includes the federal funding granted to Hawaii in response to the recent natural disasters. Senator Ihara reported that they are waiting for the State and City to come to an agreement on whether to move ahead and an agreement on who will do what. He commented that the City would likely be the nexus for information related to the project, including adjusting the design and finding alternatives/betterment.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Point of Contact: A resident asked and Senator Ihara responded that any residents interested in getting more information in the time before an agreement is reached should contact Julius Fischer of Ala Wai Collaborative. He added that there are many neighborhood boards affected by this project, and encouraged residents to attend the other impacted boards.
2. Local Partners: Shiraki asked and Senator Ihara responded that the State and City are in support of the project.
3. Information: Resident Watase requested an opportunity to provide Senator Ihara with information related to the project.
4. Palolo Retention Basins: Resident Watase commented that, while design changes may be able to impact less private property owners, retention basins would still be constructed in Palolo. He commented that Palolo does not need retention basins. Senator Ihara commented that the project needs to be put on hold to allow for more opportunities for the community and local partners to understand the cause for the project, the project itself, and how to move forward. Resident Watase clarified that he supports finding a solution that will protect Waikiki. He added that he would only support retention basins in Palolo if it could be demonstrated as the only solution to prevent serious damage to the Palolo community. He concluded that there are better alternatives that will not impact the streams, contribute to sedimentation, or require four (4) concrete walls around the Ala Wai.
5. Army Corps of Engineers: A resident asked and Senator Ihara responded that the Army Corps of Engineers is not present for these community discussions because their end of the project, the initial designs, were completed and passed to the local partners.
Hearing no objections, Vice Chair Mau deferred Proposed Board Resolutions to Wednesday, March 13, 2019.
Approval of Minutes Wednesday, December 12, 2018
The Palolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 adopted the Wednesday, December 12, 2018 Meeting Minutes by UNANIMOUS CONSENT; 9-0-0 (AYE: Armentrout, Caron, Farm, Frost, Holtrop, Mau, Nakayama, Onishi, Shiraki. NAY: None. ABSTAIN: None.)
Treasurer's Report: Shiraki reported a remaining balance of $253.72. The report was filed.
A. The P lolo Neighborhood Board's Next Regular Meeting is Wednesday, March 13, 2019
C. Bulky Trash Pick-Up - Take out no-earlier-than one (1) day before the third Wednesday of every month) to preserve the beauty of the valley. Report via Honolulu 311 Smart Phone Application or https://appsto.re/us/SiStC.i Call 768-3203 for violations.
D. Farmers' Market - Every Wednesday from 6:30 a.m. - 7:20 a.m. at P lolo District Park
E. 'Olelo Broadcast Slots - The P lolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 meetings will tentatively be aired on Channel 49 the first and third Sundays of the month at 12:00 p.m. and the 4th Thursday at 9:00 p.m. or online, anytime at http://www.olelo.org
F. Social Media - Join us informally at the Palolo Neighborhood Board No. 6 or "P lolo Valley Community" page on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com. Also stay connected with P lolo at www.nextdoor.com
G. Designated Board Members to Assist to Close-Up - Thank you to Shiraki for arranging.
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
Submitted by: Thomas Baldwin, Neighborhood Assistant
Reviewed by: Naomi Hanohano, Neighborhood Assistant
Reviewed by: Beverly Mau, Vice Chair
Finalized by: Randolph Hack, Chair
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