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Palolo Neighborhood Board Meeting August 2019 Minutes
INITIAL CONVENING MEETING MINUTES
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 11, 2019
PALOLO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CAFETERIA
CALL TO ORDER: Chair Randolph Hack 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: Shane Albritton, Jesus Arriola, Frank Farm , Randolph Hack, Beverly Mau, Rusti Onishi, Earl Shiraki, Richard Skizewski, and Jessica Welch.
Board Members Absent: Joshua Frost and Darlene Nakayama.
Guests: Captain C.K. Lau (Honolulu Fire Department); Sergeant N. Peipman (Honolulu Police Department); Councilmember Ann Kobayashi and Cliff Kaneshiro (Councilmember Ann Koabayshi's Office); Ross Sasamura (Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative); Catherine Colon (Governor David Ige's Representative); House Representative Calvin Say; Senator Les Ihara Jr.; Tim Nelson (Congressman Ed Case's Office); Everly Williams (Olelo); Andrea Chark, Jackson Sayama, Anne Harada, Roland Chong, Sidney Lynell, Dave Watase, and Celeste Roberts (Residents); James Skizewski (Neighborhood Commission Office).
CITY MONTHLY REPORTS
Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) - Fire Fighter Cory Lau reported the following:
• June 2019 Statistics - There was 1 structure fire, 1 activated alarm, 23 medical emergencies, and 2 motor vehicles collisions.
• Safety Tip: Grilling Safety - A list of grilling safety tips was provided.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Kalua Place: Shiraki asked and Fire Fighter Lau responded that the origin of the fire at Kalua Place is unknown at this time. Lau added that the fire progressed quickly so it is difficult to find the cause of the fire. The home did not have smoke detectors.
2. Smoke Alarms: Resident Tsuyama noted that the Red Cross provides free smoke alarms. Fire Fighter Lau added that the HFD has a similar program for the elderly.
3. Fire at Jarret Intermediate School: Resident Lehua asked and Fire Fighter Lau responded that there was a fire in the brush at Jarret School in the area of a homeless encampment.
4. Kalua Place: Resident Chong asked and Fire Fighter Lau responded that the fire is believed to have started near the washer dryer unit but added at this time the origin of the fire is unknown. Fire Fighter Lau added that the a victim of the fire might have been asleep at the time of the fire and could of fallen to smoke inhalation.
Honolulu Police Department (HPD) - Sergeant Anuna reported the following:
• June 2019 Statistics - There were 4 motor vehicle thefts, 6 burglaries, 18 thefts, and 4 unauthorized entries into motor vehicles (UEMV).
• Safety Tip: Pedestrian Safety - A list of pedestrian safety tips was provided.
• Meet the Major - The Meet the Major event is scheduled for Wednesday, August 21, 2019 at 6:00 p.m. at Aina Haina Elementary School.
• Project CLEAN: HPD will be hosting an electronic recycling event on Saturday, September 7, 2019, at Maunalua bay Park from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
• Coffee with a Cop: On Thursday, September 12, 2019, HPD will be hosting a Coffee with a Cop event at the Aina Hina McDonald's beginning at 8:00 a.m.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Officer Shortage: Albritton asked about how a reported shortage of HPD officers reported in the newspaper effects HPD and Sergeant Anuna responded that it makes for an active day. Sergeant Anuna added that HPD is doing its best to address the issue. Chief Ballard is trying to look at ways to expedite training. Albritton noted how teacher shortages makes education difficult. Albritton asked and Sergeant Anuna responded that only support officers were sent to Big Island to provide aide. Sergeant Anuna added that no patrols were affected.
Board of Water Supply - Dominic Dias was not present, Chair Figliuzzi reported:
• Main Breaks - No main breaks in July 2019.
• Summer Water Conservation/ Weather Based Irrigation Control: With the hot summer months upon us, the BWS is reminding all residents to be vigilant and avoid wasting water. One way to save money and to stop over-watering is to purchase an EPA-labeled Weather-Based Irrigation Controller. This smart controller adjusts your watering schedule based on the weather conditions in your local area. A Weather-Based Irrigation Controller automatically adjusts your sprinklers to irrigate when needed allowing you to conserve up to 7,600 gallons of water per year. This device will not only conserve water, but it will save you money and time. It's easy to install and can be purchased online, or at Home Depot, Lowes and the Pacific Pipe Company. Provided was a handout containing general information about the Weather-Based Irrigation Controller and how you can apply for a rebate by purchasing this water conservation device. Find out more at www.boardofwatersupply.com/rebates.
• Water Emergency Preparedness: Natural disasters, power outages, or other unexpected events can affect the Board of Water Supply's (BWS) ability to provide water service to the community. With recent storm activity in the Pacific, as well as September marking the observance of National Preparedness Month, this serves as an important reminder to have an emergency preparedness kit available for your household. one crucial component of your preparedness kit is a safe drinking water supply. Residents should store at least one gallon of water per person per day for at least fourteen days. Also, in the event of an emergency, it is very important to stay tuned to media reports to receive water information bulletins and take any appropriate actions announced by the BWS or other emergency response agencies. More information about water emergency preparedness, including a how-to video demonstrating how best to store drinking water in your home, is available online at www.boardofwatersupply.com/emerpencypreparedness. To receive emergency alerts via email or text message, consider subscribing to the BWS at HNL.info.
REPORTS OF MEMBERS ATTENDANCE AT OTHER CITY MEETINGS: No report.
FILLING OF VACANT BOARD SEATS: Chair Hack petitioned the public for a volunteer to fill the Board vacancy, no volunteers came forth.
Councilmember Ann Kobayashi - Cliff Kaneshiro reported the following:
• Resolution 19-160: Councilmember Kobayashi I introduced this Resolution, along with Councilmember Tommy Waters, recognizing the community's continued concerns regarding discrepancies with the comment period deadline for the Second Environmental Impact Study (EIS) for the Ala Moana Regional Park which proposed a one-acre playground within the park. Additionally, many community stakeholders have raised concerns about the Cultural Impact Assessment included in the Second EIS. Finally, the proposed playground does not conform to Resolution 98-188 Council Draft (CD) 1, which established guidelines for multipurpose parks.
• Sidewalks: Across the district crosswalks have been removed with little or no public input or notice, which concerns me, as our keiki and kupuna who rely on crosswalks are at greater risk for injury. In response to community concerns, the Council adopted Bill 61 (2018), subsequently passed as Ordinance 18-43, requiring the Department of Transportation Services to solicit public input prior to the relocation or removal of a marked crosswalk. I introduced Resolution 19-150 to urge the Department of Transportation Services to reinstall crosswalks on Kapiolani Boulevard at Wiliwili Street and Paani Street. The resolution was deferred by the Transportation Committee, citing changes to the Federal Highway Administration guidelines regarding crosswalks and noting that plans to modify these crosswalks had begun prior to the establishment of Ordinance 18-43.
• Hurricane Season: Season officially began in June 2019 and continues until the end of November 2019. With an increasing number of storms, planning ahead can reduce the chances of injury or major property damage should a hurricane reach Oahu. State emergency managers recommend residents have 14 days' worth of supplies, with an emergency kit that includes: non-perishable food; one gallon of water per person per day; first-aid kit; battery-powered or hand crank radio; tools, duct tape, and plastic sheeting to shelter in place; and personal sanitation items.
• Around the Community: On Wednesday, July 3rd, 2019, the Council was pleased to recognize Director Susan Ochi-Onishi and the Kaimuki Middle School Symphonic Winds on performing at the prestigious Music for All National Festival in Indianapolis, Indiana.
• Ala Wai Watershed Community Meeting: A community meeting will be held on Monday, August 19, 2019, in the Neil Blaisdell Center Maui Meeting Room beginning at 5:30 p.m.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. HPD Support: Farm noted the need for the City Council and the Mayor to support HPD during their officer shortage. Kaneshiro noted he will pass on the sentiment to Councilmember Kobayashi.
2. Short Term Rentals: Onishi expressed concerns with short term rental violation enforcement. Onishi added that the City is facing lawsuits related to enforcement and Kaneshiro responded that the suits are still in litigation but he will pass on his concerns to Councilmember Kobayashi. Shiraki noted his support for fining violators.
3. Monster Homes: Resident Chong noted his concerns with monster homes in the area and asked the City Council for support.
Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative - Ross Sasamura, Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM) Director, reported the following: Kuahea Street: The City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) noted that the next phase of emergency repairs to stabilize the City's property and associated infrastructure along Kuahea Street between Kuahea Place and Helo Place is considering the installation of tieback anchors and not piles. The City is currently in the design phase.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Tie Backs: Resident Annie asked and Director Sasamura responded that while piles are driven into the ground to provide stabling, tie-backs are structurally different as they utilize anchors from the surrounding area to provide stabilization. Onishi asked and Director Sasamura responded that he will look into why tie-backs where chosen and when construction is slated to begin.
2. Waiomao Road: Resident Trusdale a resident of Waiomao Road noted concerns with a growing hump on Waiomao Road and asked for more information on what will be done to address the area. Director Sasamura noted he will request a representative come to the Palolo Neighborhood Board. Shiraki noted his concerns with the condition of Waiomao Road. Director Sasamura added that the City is always looking after the community and has plans in place to address emergencies. Shiraki asked and Director Sasamura responded that the project is related for the further potential of land slides if the hump is addressed. Resident Trusdale asked and Director Sasamura responded that the contractor has already tried to taper the hump but was then criticized by the community for not completely fixing the issue. Director Sasamura assured the community that DDC is monitoring the issue and reminded the community that this issue is over seven (7) decades old. Director Sasamura concluded that public safety and access remains a priority for the City. Senator Ihara Jr. asked and Director Sasamura responded that if a road blockage occurs which creates a safety issues, that matter will be addressed directly by the City.
Governor David Ige's Representative - Catherine Colon, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Director, circulated the Capitol Connection and reported the following:
• Bill Veto Deadline: June 2019 marked the bill veto deadline. Governor Ige notified legislative leaders and key lawmakers that he vetoed 18 of 20 bills on his Intent to Veto list.
• Emergency Planning: Hawaii's Emergency Management Agency HI-EMA urges residents to prepare, stay vigilant during hurricane season.
• Augmented Reality: The new "augmented reality" technology and a website describing "The Washington Place Experience" were developed by UH-West Oahu's creative media students in partnership with the Washington Place staff.
• Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT): Director Colon noted that there is ongoing litigation related to TMT that will delay construction.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. All Mail in Voting: Shiraki noted his concerns with a voting system done completely by mail and noted the need for poll stations. Director Colon responded that his sentiment will be passed on to the Governor.
2. Ala Wai Watershed Project: Resident Lynch asked and Director Colon responded that she will look into the funding source for the Ala Wai Watershed project. Resident Dave Watase noted that the State legislature has not budgeted funds for the project and asked if the Governor will still use State funding for the Ala Wai Watershed project. Resident Watase concluded that the Mayor will be asked the City Council to use State funds for a portion of project funding. Director Colon noted that appropriated monies are usually for a very specific use.
3. HPD Aiding at Mauna Kea: Resident Harada asked and Director Colon noted she will follow up on if HPD was required to aide in the efforts at Mauna Kea. Albritton asked where the funds came from to send HPD to Big Island.
House Speaker Emeritus (HSE) Calvin Say - HSE Say reported the following:
• Waiomao Road: The unsafe rock wall at Kuahea Street and Waiomao Road is being addressed.
• Coqui Frogs: The State Department of Agriculture (DOA) has responded to and is addressing the report of Coqui frogs at the property in Palolo Valley. The area was treated with citric acid.
• Feral Chickens: The Department of Education (DOE) met with concerned community members and HSE Say at Anuenue School to discuss how to address the feral chicken issue.
• Abandoned Vehicles: The timetable to address abandoned vehicles is three (3) to six (6) months due to the capacity of the storage lots.
• Palolo Elementary School: HSE was excited to announce the expansion of the public pre-k programs and noted that Palolo has been identified as a public pre-k site.
• Fires in Palolo: In the past seven (7) months there has been three (3) major fires. HSE Say has contacted HFD to work with the community to provide smoke alarms.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Monster Homes: Onishi asked and HSE Say responded that he is aware of the issue related to the potential monster home along Palolo Avenue. Onishi asked and HSE Say responded that the property and structure was approved for construction by the City.
2. HPD: Farm requested HSE Say to support HPD during their reported officer shortage and work to get legislative support for HPD. HSE Say discussed a possibility for Boards to request the legislature to give a portion of fines and asset forfeited to county police departments. HSE Say explained that the City and County of Honolulu is not getting their fair share of the transient accommodations tax (TAT). HSE Say urged the Boards to petition legislature. HSE concluded that he has concerns at the amount of taxes are stressing the revenue gained from property.
Senator Les Ihara Jr. - Senator Ihara reported the following:
• Court Judges - The Senate will convene to confirm nominations of circuit court and district court judges.
• Time Capsule: The 50 year time capsule will be replaced at the State Capitol and opened again in half a century.
• Ala Wai Watershed Project: Governor Ige cannot spend funds that was not appropriated by the legislature which was not consistent with Mayor Caldwell's latest message. Senator Ihara Jr. noted that he does not think this project will get canceled. Senator Ihara Jr. encouraged the community to come together as this project did not properly take sea level rise into account. Senator Ihara Jr. concluded that he believes the United States Army Corp of Engineers (ACME) did not follow community engagement requirements as they did not address sea-level rise.
• Waiomao Road: Senator Ihara Jr. encouraged the community to form a permitted interaction group (PIG) to address the issues at Waiomao Road. Chair Hack noted that the issue is being discussed is being considered later on in the agenda.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed: La'i Road: Councilmember Kobayashi noted her concerns with the lack of bulky item pickup on La'i Road.
Hearing no objections, Chair Hack added "Congressman Ed Case's Office" to "Elected Officials" portion of the agenda.
Congressman Ed Case - Tim Nelson of Congressman Case's office circulated a newsletter and reported the following:
• Community Broadcast: Tune in to a regular program on 'Olelo for updates. The "Congressman Case Reports to Hawaii" community broadcasting show has a regular primetime slot on 'Olelo ch.49 every third Sunday at 6:00 p.m. and again the following Tuesday at 10:00 a.m. There is a new show every month on the issues we are facing in DC and back home. Each show is also on my YouTube channel at youtube.com/RepEdCase.
• Programs and Projects Approved for Hawaii:
o House Resolution (H.R.) 2740: The Defense provisions of this nearly $1 trillion bill clearly reflects that the House shares my prioritization of the Asia-pacific region. Hawaii is in a forward position in this area it is home to the United States Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM). Harbors in Hawai'i will receive funding assistance, Native Hawaiian programs in the areas of healthcare and education and the East-West Center on the grounds of the University of Hawaii will all get an assist from this bill
o H.R. 3055: My membership on the key House Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies, and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Science, Justice and Related Agencies, played a key role in delivering federal funding on several items for Hawai'i. This $383 billion measure will address a long-standing need for facilities that provide critical services at various military installations in our island state, especially as our role in the Indo-Pacific region increases to deal with the challenges in this vast area. I was able to secure $60 million for Phase 5 of a new Command and Control Facility at Fort Shatter, which is currently housed in World War II buildings, and another $134 million for additional barracks housing at the Hawai'i Marine Corps Base. The House also approved more than $1 billion for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs telehealth program, which is critical to reaching out to our veterans in rural and isolated populations across our islands in Hawaii and elsewhere in the Pacific. This bill also includes funding boosts for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a critical resource because of the agency's world-class research in all things related to our oceans, and especially now as we rely on NOAA's forecasting expertise as we find ourselves in the midst of hurricane season.
o H.R. 3351: This $25 billion funding measure focuses on securing our democracy, strengthening small business and protecting consumers. The S600 million in this measure will help states and localities to secure their election systems from any and all interference in the 2020 elections. Securing our elections ensure our confidence in the results of those elections.
• Natural Disasters: In June 2019, Congressman Case voted for an emergency supplemental disaster aid bill that was later signed into law by the President with millions slated to help communities in Hawai'i hit hard by natural disasters last year. This bill will provide critical disaster relief for floods and volcanic activity that impacted Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island, including agricultural programs, infrastructure restoration, coastal recovery, and more. The bill also extends the National Flood Insurance program through September 30, 2019.
• Tour Helicopters: Congressman Case recently sent Board members outlining his concerns and his reasons for pushing for increased regulation of all aspects of our operations. He also asked all Boards to consider adopting resolutions expressing your concerns and calling on federal, state and local officials to take all steps necessary to address community safety and disruption concerns through substantially increased regulation. These resolutions will show the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and other agencies that the problem with tour helicopters is real and regulations need to be in place in order to prevent another tragedy like the ones in Kailua and Mokule'ia and to keep people safe both in aircraft as well as on the ground, and to also eliminate disruption of whole communities across our state.
• Grant Talk Story: Congressman Case will host a talk story event on federal assistant programs on Saturday, August 17, 2019.
Ala Wai Watershed Project: Dave Watase noted his opposition to the Ala Wai Watershed project and added that he is really concerned with Mayor Caldwell's Council Resolution (CR) 19-182. Watase urged the community to provide testimony on the issue and visit www. https://www.stopalawaiproject.com/ for more information. Seven (7) neighborhood boards have asked the legislature and ACME to halt the project. Watase added that he has spoken with ACME and there is no deadline to sign the public private partnership (P3) agreement. Watase concluded that the Civil Beat article that mentioned the Palolo related portions of the project was removed is untrue.
Olelo: Everly Williams of Olelo noted that they have a substation at Kaimuki High school. Training is available to the public at these stations. There is a public orientation on Tuesday, August 20, 2019, with training beginning on Monday, September 2, 2019. Olelo offers the free recording of any public service announcement.
Hale Naau: Resident Ginger noted issues with homelessness in the Hale Naau area off of Waiomao Road. People are congregating on temple property which is unsafe and should be condemned. This has led to an unsafe living conditions including rats and safety issues. The resident asked for the guidance of the Board, City, State, and community.
Kuahea Place: A requested Director Sasamura look into possibly using Kuahea Place as an alternate route to access Waiomao Road. Resident Chong noted that Kuahea Place stabilization is important to the community and suggested the cracks in Waiomao Road can be filled with a substance that can stop the damage and seal the cracks.
Malama Mentors: Aries Jackson and Jay Jaman presented on the Malama Mentors program which pairs high school students with elementary school students as mentors. This program is aimed to address at-risk youth. The program has been approved by the DOE and schools themselves. Participants have visited the Palolo elderly homes to speak with the senior citizens on their life experiences. Teenagers are trained to inspire and guide youth in the area to strive for bright futures.
9th Avenue Sewer Relief Update: Arjay Franczyk circulated a handout related to the sewer relief and noted that the project will include a road closure at Kalua Road. The traffic plan has been approved and construction should begin in September 2019.
Formation of Permitted Interaction Group (PIG) for Kuahea and Waiomao Road Earth Movements: Chair Hack petitioned the Board on their interest to form a PIG to focus on earth movement at Kuahea and Waiomao Road.
Mau moved and Onishi seconded the motion to form a Permitted Interaction Group (PIG) to investigate the earth movement at Kuahea and Waiomao Road. The motion was adopted by UNANIMOUS CONSENT, 9-0-0; (AYE: Albritton, Arriola, Hack, Mau, Farm, Onishi, Shiraki, Skizewski, and Welch; NAY: None; ABSTAIN: None;).
Hearing no objections, Albritton, Shiraki, Onishi, and Welch were appointed to the PIG on earth movement at Kuahea and Waiomao Road. Chair Hack noted that a PIG can meet and are not subject to sunshine law requirements. Chair Hack appointed Albritton as Chair of the PIG on earth movement at Kuahea and Waiomao Road.
Proposed Letter re: City Violation Citation: Chair Hack noted that the presenter was unable to attend.
Approval of Minutes of the July 2019 Meeting - Mau moved and Shiraki seconded the Motion to approve the July 2019 Minutes as written. The Motion WAS ADOPTED by UNANIMOUS VOTE, 9-0-0; (AYE: Albritton, Arriola, Hack, Mau, Farm, Onishi, Shiraki, Skizewski, and Welch; NAY: None; ABSTAIN: None ;).
Treasurer Report - Welch reported a remaining balance of $372.00.
ADJOURNMENT - The meeting adjourned at 8:36 p.m.
Submitted by: James Skizewski, Community Relations Specialist
Reviewed by: Harry Cho, Public Relations
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