Parker Ranch and Paniolo Power will update Waimea Community Association at 5:15 p.m. on Thursday, April 2, 2015 Town Meeting on their efforts to pursue renewable energy and lower electricity rates for the immediate community of Waimea, North Hawai’i and perhaps all of Hawai’i Island.
Dutch Kuyper and Jose Dizon will present the most current results of the Siemens team to develop alternative plans. They also will explain the status of things with the Public Utilities Commission in its review of the HECO and HELCO plans as well as the proposed merger between NextEra and HECO.
As always, everyone is invited and there is no charge to attend WCA Town Meetings, though donations to the nearly 60-year-old community organization are welcome. WCA recently became an IRS-approved non-profit, so that donations to support the organization’s activities are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. WCA’s operating expenses are modest as it is entirely volunteer run.
Attendees at WCA Town Meetings also are urged to contribute to the Waimea food pantry with cash or check, though non-perishable, not-expired food items are also welcome. Checks may be payable directly to the food pantry so the donation is tax deductible. Attendees at town meetings also enjoy free Starbucks hot coffee, though a small donation is suggested for the food pantry.
For information, call Patti Cook (937-2833) or go to www.Facebook.com/WaimeaCommunityAssociation.
Waimea Middle School’s new Interim Principal Amy Kendziorski has been an outrigger canoe paddler ever since her first teaching assignment in Waianae 25 years ago. Today, she’s a regular with Waikoloa Canoe Club and was part of the 40s Women crew that completed the 18-mile Lili’uokalani Long Distance Race from Kailua-Kona to Pu’uhonua O Honaunau last Labor Day weekend. So, “paddling together” is really second nature for her.
As she now becomes Interim Principal for Waimea Middle School for the remainder of the current year and the 2015-’16 school year, she is asking students, families, faculty, staff and community partners to “paddle together to achieve our school’s mission of empowering all students with the skills, values and cultural understanding to successfully navigate high school and beyond.”
Ms. K, as she is often called by students, has served as WMS’ Vice Principal for the past two years and worked closely with teachers and staff, including former Principal Matt Horne, and the all-volunteer Local Advisory Panel and WMS’ Local School Board, Ho’okako’o Corp., to successfully secure 6-year Accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
“Ever since my first teaching job in Waianae almost 25 years ago, I knew I wanted to return to Hawai’i Island to help all children succeed in school to prepare them to have real choices in life,” said Ms. Kendziorski. “All children deserve high quality education. We must not allow any excuses such as poverty, disability, language barriers or gender bias to get in their way.”
“Our Accreditation plan mandates all of us — our teachers, staff, families, Local School Board and community — to continually improve programs and services to ensure all students progress academically. I am excited about working with everyone to continue the progress we have made.”
An experienced school administrator who grew up in Wisconsin and who has 25 years’ experience in public education, Ms. Kendziorski began her teaching career at Waianae High School in 1990, where, in addition to teaching, she coached track and cross country and chaperoned three student trips to Kaho’olawe.
She has a Bachelor’s degree in Special Education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from San Diego State University. Career highlights include 13 years in Colorado’s Durango School District 9R, where she oversaw special education, alternative education, health, safety and discipline for the 4,500-student district that included two high schools, a juvenile detention facility school, two middle schools and seven elementary schools.
Prior to that, she was Principal at Durango’s Escalante Middle School for five years. While there, she facilitated the school’s successful inclusion practices so that all students were learning and growing together.
Ms. Kendziorski is taking over school leadership for Principal Matt Horne, who said: “I hope every WMS student knows how much I have enjoyed working with them and on their behalf over the past three years, watching them grow personally and, most especially, academically, as they prepare for high school and beyond. I am so proud of their hard work and progress, and am grateful to our teachers, staff and our generous school partners for supporting each and every student.”
“We thank Ms. Kendziorski for helping WMS move forward,” said Ho’okako’o Corp. Board Chair Ann Botticelli. For more information, go to www.WaimeaMiddleSchool.org or www.Hookakoo.org.
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Patti Cook (937-2833)
Waimea Middle School
March 28, 2015
DEDICATION OF LAND FROM PARKER RANCH FOR WAIMEA DISTRICT PARK
To : Chair Valerie Poindexter & Committee MembersAs you know, a commitment was made by Parker Ranch in 2002 to dedicate landsto the County of Hawai’i for public park and recreational purposes. This was partof a rezoning ordinance that recognized a serious shortage of public recreational facilities in the Waimea area that predated 2002 by many years. These lands that were set aside have been used for the Waimea Trails and Greenways project, as well as the proposed Waimea Regional District Park.
The Waimea community has, in the ensuing years, dedicated a tremendousamount of time to working with both the Ranch and County Parks and Rec staff toplan and design a long dreamed of District Park, and more recently, worked with the County Administration, Council, State Legislature and the Governor to secure authorization and release of matching funds for a master plan, and now construction of Phase 1. We sincerely thank everyone who has had a hand in keeping this moving forward, most notably community volunteers with Waimea Park Builders, which is led by Mel Macy.
The dedication of land by Parker Ranch and its trustees as addressed in Resolution No. 121 15 is a critical step to keep this project moving forward. We thank the Ranch for this contribution to our community’s wellbeing, and we urge quick action by this Committee and Council to accept this dedication.
5:00 – 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, April 14
HPA Village Campus Dining Hall
All are invited to this open house, one of 13 statewide, to introduce Hawaii residents to NextEra, the Florida-based company that has agreed to purchase HEI for $4.7 billion. The open house will offer an opportunity to provide input to company officials.
“Learn first hand why NextEra is the right partner,” says HEI President Alan Oshima.
Hot topics that are among the 2015 Legislative priorities for Waimea and North Hawai’i will top the agenda of Waimea Community Association’s 5:15 p.m. Thursday, January 8, 2015 Town Meeting in Waimea School cafeteria. As always, all are invited to town meetings, and there is no charge, though donations to support WCA’s educational activities are now tax-deductible.
Joining the community for the 2015 legislative discussion will be Sen. Lorraine Inouye and Rep. Cindy Evans, both of whom will also share insights about the coming session, which officially begins Wednesday, January 21.
A series of presentations will spotlight both new and ongoing community issues, priorities and opportunities including:
- Parker Ranch’s Paniolo Power initiative to lower the cost of electricity;
- Re-prioritizing the long-awaited Kawaihae Bypass, which was removed by the State Department of Transportation this past year from the STIP priority list;
- Supporting completion of Phase 1 and pursuing funding to begin planning for Phase 2 of the Palamanui higher education campus in West Hawai’i, which is expected to open for classes in Fall 2015,
- Getting repairs underway at the potable water reservoir located in the pu’u above town; the reservoir was damaged in the 2006 earthquake and has been sitting empty ever since,
- Exploring the status of public charter schools, which are of particular interest to the district and island because there are four in North Hawai’I and a majority of the state’s public charters are on Hawai’i Island,
- Status of planning and design for Waimea District Park, including whether additional funding will be required,
- Introducing a new STEM education initiative that targets middle and high school students from both public and private Waimea schools to teach coding and hands-on, project-based innovative design, and
- Enhancing youth educational programming at Kahilu Theatre.
Also on the January 8 Town Meeting Agenda will be a briefing on County Council business by Council Members Margaret Wille (Dist. 9) and Valerie Poindexter (Dist. 1).
As always at WCA Town Meetings, attendees are urged to contribute to Annunciation’s Waimea food pantry with cash or check, though non-perishable, not-expired food items are also welcome. Checks may be payable directly to the food pantry. Donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.
Attendees and community members also are urged to contribute to WCA to help fulfill its mission:
- To preserve, maintain, enhance and protect community values by embracing our diversity and sense of place;
- To gather and present information and facilitate communication and discussion of issues affecting Waimea;
- To promote open participation in the development of policies and legislation affecting Waimea;
- To inform community members about how and where to make their voices heard, individually or collectively; and
- To encourage new generations of leaders to continue Waimea’s tradition of community building and community service.
WCA is entirely volunteer-run, so annual expenses are modest. Tax-deductible donations payable to Waimea Community Association may be brought to town meetings or mailed to 66-1250 Lalamilo Farm Road, Kamuela, HI 96743.
For more information, call WCA Vice President Patti Cook (937-2833) or go to www.WaimeaTown.org.
A Critical Meeting of
The Commission on Water Resource Management
Regarding the Designation of the
DATE: December 10, 2014
TIME: 9:00 am
PLACE: West Hawaii Civic Center
Council Building A, Council Chambers
74-5044 Ane Keohokalole Highway
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii 96740
A hearing to accept public testimony will be held by the Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM), which will make a decision on the petition filed by the National Parks Service to designate the Keauhou Aquifer as a Ground Water Management Area, a decision that will significant consequences that reach far beyond Keauhou Aquifer watershed, including:
- On 7/10/14, DWS provided a letter stating that if the Keauhou aquifer (Hokulia to Makalawena) is designated, they will stop issuing water meters in North Kona. Their concern is that their priority is to their existing customers. If designation occurs, they will need to re-apply to CWRM for their twelve existing wells that serve their customers. It is likely that CWRM will cut back on the amount of water that DWS will be allowed to pump from the aquifer. NPS will likely intervene on every re-application. On Maui (Iao Aquifer), the re-approval process has continued from 2003 till now (and it’s still not done). So, in an abundance of caution, they will not issue a water meter to a new customer, unless they are assured they will have enough water for their existing customers. This may take from now (2015) till 2026 (based on the Iao/Maui timeline)
- On Oahu/Maui, when similar designations occurred, water was pumped in from adjacent areas (windward Oahu and on Maui; Waiehu, Waihee, Wailuku, Waikapu). On Hawaii Island, it is not feasible to pump in water from the adjacent aquifers of South Kona (Honaunau) or Waikoloa.
- So, if designated, many Government projects are at risk of not having water available. This includes:
- Kona Airport expansion including the proposed Life Flight hanger (air ambulance)
- NELHA expansion (NELHA is a high water user to replenish water that has evaporated in their ponds)
- Kona Judiciary (DAGS is very active in opposing this NPS petition)
- Kamakana Villages (Forest City’s affordable housing project on HHFDC lands)
- DHHL/Laiopua Village 4: under construction right now
- County Kona Regional Park (on the former Kealakehe golf course site)
Click this link to see the meeting agenda.
Click this link to read statements and positions opposing the National Park Service’s petition for a State Water Management Area Designation for the Keauhou Aquifer.
Click this link to read a comprehensive response from the Hawaii County Department of Water Supply opposing designation.
Click this link to read a statement opposing designation from the State of Hawaii Department of Accounting and General Services.
Click this link to read a Petition Requesting a Contested Case Hearing before the Commission on Water Resource Management, filed by the Water Board of the County of Hawaii.
Click this link to download a template for a letter of testimony to the Commission on Water Resource Management and instruction for its submission.
THE BIG ISLAND GIVING TREE (BIGT), started by Waimea community volunteers several years back to support those in need during the holidays, has transformed into a source of hope for those facing difficult times year-round and also now provides donors with the benefit of making a tax deduction. BIGT will again serve our North Hawai’i seniors during the coming holiday season and they also step up to help families in crisis due to fires, illness and unexpected tragedies. Donations payable to BIGT can be mailed to Box 2786, Kamuela 96743. Questions or to help in other ways, call Rhonda Bell (880-1984). Several major Waimea events during December will focus attention on BIGT beginning with the tree lighting at Parker Ranch historic homes Dec. 4, the 54th Annual Christmas Twilight Parade Dec. 6, which is led off by a “bucket brigade” of volunteers, and more – see coming events.
‘LIGHT UP A LIFE’ MEMORIAL TREE ORNAMENTS: Remember your loved ones with an ornament from North Hawai’i Hospice to be hung on the Memorial Tree at Parker Square. Ornaments available for a suggested $5 donation per ornament at North Hawai’i Hospice office starting Dec. 1, and also outside the Waimea General Store on Saturdays and Sundays thru Dec. 14 and at Waimea Town Market at Parker School on Saturdays, Dec. 6 & 13. Info: 885-7547.
WEST HAWAI’I COUNTY BAND MINI-CONCERT: 4 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6. Parker Ranch Center. Then they will scoot over to the park to march in the parade!
ANNUAL PARKER RANCH GIANT COOKE PINE TREE LIGHTING: 5-7 p.m., Thurs. Dec. 4 at Pu’uopelu Historic Homes. Note: There will only be one tree lighting ceremony this year here in Waimea and it’s this one at Parker Ranch. You may have noticed that the top light was turned on Nov. 12 to remember the late Richard Smart’s death anniversary. Yes, Parker School will be lighting their beautiful tall tree but no festivities – we are combining our efforts at Parker Ranch and the event will be the formal kickoff for the Big Island Giving Tree ingathering. Entertainment will include HPA Handbell Choir and other keiki groups, emceed by Darde Gamayo of KAPA FM and Leighton Bell. Parker Ranch will continue their tradition of offering free h9ot chocolate and cookies to everyone. Dinner also will be available of beef stew, rice, baked goods and coffee, with proceeds benefiting the Big Island Giving Tree’s 2014 focus on “Our Kupuna…Our Kuleana.” Contributions welcome to include cash or checks (yes, it’s tax deductible), or gift cards for local stores such as KTA, Foodland, Longs Drugs/CVS or Costco. Free and all invited!
FIRST SATURDAY FLEA MARKET, ARTS & COLLECTIBLES: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6. New Hope Gym. A free indoor market open to community groups and individuals to raise funds and also contribute to the Gymnasium Improvement Fund. Offers antiques, collectibles, crafts, plants, Hawaiiana, clothes, books, food, art, rummage, jewelry, toys, etc. Space available – call Skip (989-4422). Parking behind gym or along Cherry Blossom Park.
CHRISTMAS CLEARANCE & CONTAINER SALE AT WAIMEA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL THRIFT SHOP: 8 a.m. to noon, Sat., Dec. 6. Several generous donors have gifted a tempting array of collectibles, clothing, kitchen appliances, oriental tea cups, holiday decorations, costume jewelry and more, making this a great place to find very reasonable – often new – gifts, household items, clothing and keepsakes! All proceeds benefit Waimea public school children. Located near the back entry to the elementary school campus – park behind the post office and walk in. Look for signage. Regular hours 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays, and 1-3 p.m., Wednesdays.
‘WAIMEA ROCKS!’ – AN UPCOUNTRY CHRISTMAS FAIR WITH ALL-DAY ENTERTAINMENT, GIFTS AND ONO FOODS: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6. KTA’s Waimea Center. Holiday arts, crafts and gifts with 30+ sidewalk sale vendors combined with four hours of award-winning entertainment and food choices, hosted by Waimea’s own Penny Keli’i Vredenburg. Show begins at 10 a.m. with the Beamer-Solomon Halau O Po’ohala, followed at 11 with Nino Ka’ai, Noon with Michael Strand’s upcountry paniolo music, 1 p.m. by Darlene Ahuna and 2 p.m. with Kevin Haleamau and Friends. Also free Keiki-Make-And-Take Crafts with Miss Loretta. No charge and everyone invited and donations to the Big Island Giving Tree are the reason for this celebration. Donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. Info: Rhonda Bell (880-1984) or Nancy Carr Smith (896-2239).
40+ CHRISTMAS CRAFTERS & VISITS WITH SANTA AT PARKER RANCH CENTER: Crafters all day Sat., Dec. 13 & 20. Santa visits and photos from noon to 3 p.m. Photos free but a donation encouraged to Waimea Lions Club and North Hawai’i Hospice. Info: Frank Zablan (960-2548).
ʻBRIGHT AT TWILIGHTʻ AT PARKER RANCH CENTER! Receive a free Flashing Light Cowboy Hat with any $10 purchase from Center Tenants (while supplies last), beginning at 3 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6.
HAWAI’I-MADE ‘CRAFTY HANDS & GIFTS, TOO!’: 9 a.m.– 4 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6. Thelma Parker Gym. Featuring locally made items by dozens of island artisans. Free and includes plate lunches and other food, plus lucky number drawing throughout the day. Food donations suggested for Annunciation Pantry. Christmas music too. Info: Benita Salazar (960-9944).
WAIMEA OUTDOOR CIRCLE’S ANNUAL WREATH MAKING WORKSHOP: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6. Ulu La’auWaimea Nature Park. $35 for medium sized wreath; $45 for large wreath – includes all materials needed including form. Participants should bring clippers and gloves. WOC members will meet at park at 9 a.m., Fri., Dec. 5 to carpool to upslope Mauna Kea to gather greens with a permit. Volunteers welcome to join them for gathering but necessary to participate in this to come to wreath-making workshop. RSVP strongly recommended for wreath-making by emailing:WOCHawaii@gmail.com.
WAIMEA OUTDOOR CIRCLE FREE TREE SEEDLING GIVEAWAY: Sat., Dec. 6 from 5 p.m. throughout paradeuntil all 250 baby trees are given away on front lanai of Waimea Preservation Association’s “home” in the historic Waimea tax office at the main intersection across from Bank of Hawaii. Just stop by to pick-up a seedling that’s suit to growing well in Waimea. WOC has given away thousands of trees during past Waimea Christmas parades but concerned that many do not seem to make it into the ground to grow…so these volunteers are now asking community who will commit to planting and caring for a tree to stop by to pick one up!
SNEAK PREVIEW OF HISTORIC SPENCER HOUSE’S SOON-TO-OPEN WAIMEA WELCOME CENTER: 3-5 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 6. After a year of hard work, the all-volunteer Friends of Historic Spencer House are ready to open this beautiful 160+-year-old home to the community. A gathering place, the Welcome Center features exhibits that tell Waimea’s stories, past, present and future. These displays are based on original research, including interviewing kupuna, tracking down oral histories, old books, and documents, and visiting the State Archives. Admission is free and everyone is welcome to stop by before the Waimea Christmas Parade. Will open formally later in the month with volunteer docents and small gift shop. For more info on the historic home, use of meeting and event facilities, the Open Office and office space, go to: http://historicspencerhouse.org/, “Like” us on Facebook, or contact Paul Johnston (938-4540) or email: PEJ1000@aol.com.
54th ANNUAL WAIMEA CHRISTMAS TWILIGHT PARADE: Sat., Dec. 6, 2014. Parade from 5:30-6:45 p.m. Expect traffic delays during the parade as only emergency vehicles will be able to pass through town center. Theme: “Our Kupuna…Our Kuleana!” As always, Waimea’s famous Christmas parade (the second oldest in Hawai’i) includes a Santa float, dozens of units representing Waimea keiki to kupuna including churches, schools, youth groups, community organizations, farms, ranches and businesses, plus a huge brigade of festively lighted trucks. As always, Santa has promised to again ride in our parade and afterwards, visit with keiki at Parker Ranch Center’s Fireside Food Court. All invited to participate both in the parade and Big Island Giving Tree donation collection! Info: Parade Co-Chairs Lani Olsen-Chong (936-0670) and Kalae Kawamura (936-4376). More info and for parade applications, rules, etc. go to www.WaimeaTown.org.
- TRAFFIC ADVISORY – Road Closure:5:30-6:45 p.m. Expect delays!
- Public Safety & Respecting the ‘Aina: Please watch keiki and stay on the curb – emergency vehicles may need to pass. Absolutely no candy throwing. Please respect the ‘aina – don’t park on landscaped areas at hospital & shopping centers, pick up rubbish and no tents on private property except for permitted food booths.
- Lighted Trucks, Santa & Kupuna Floats: These are “signatures” of our Waimea parade, and this year we honor the memory of two incredibly generous and talented community contributors that we recently lost – Pua Garmon and Gloriann Akau. Their families are entering a unit to celebrate these loved ones. Also, we love our truckers but they can be noisy! If noise is difficult for you or for infants, find a spot near the Church Row or Keck narrator stations; trucks are asked not to blow horns until they pass the hospital. Mahalo to NHCH staff and Brailey Pastorino for our annual Santa float! Mahalo, too, to our parade Grand Marshals who will be a gathering of our community’s beloved kupuna!
- ‘Big IslandGiving Tree’ & Bucket Brigade: All of our Waimea Christmas festivities both welcome the season and encourage community generosity – this year focused on serving the needs of our many kupuna! Suggested contributions include a check (payable to Big Island Giving Tree – fully tax deductible!), a gift card from KTA, Foodland, Longs, Costco, Wal-Mart or local gas stations. Donations are welcome throughout the year now with special focus on the holidays so that no kupuna is forgotten and hundreds may also enjoy a warm Christmas dinner, thanks to BIGT donors and sponsors and with the kokua of dozens of volunteers and Sansei Restaurant. All parade entries asked to contribute and also a brigade of volunteers will walk the parade route for BIGT donations beginning about 5 p.m. Please be generous – our kupuna deserve our aloha and kokua! Absolutely no other organizations are permitted to collect donations along the parade route.
- 8 Narrator Stations: For a third year, the parade will begin on the east (Hamakua) end of historic Church RowPark – not the west end as in the past. A narrator station will be located mid-way on the south (soccer field) side of the highway facing Church Row Park – a great location for enjoying the parade, especially for those who are noise sensitive. As always, there will also be narrator stations fronting Keck, Ace Hardware, Radio Shack, Waimea Community Education, Bank of Hawaii and on Lindsey Road – near the Chevron Station (new location) and Parker School.
- Ono Foods Along Parade Routewill benefit Waimea educational programs and support the Giving Tree! (Prior permission required to have a parade booth and a BIGT donation required. At this time all spaces are booked.) Foods to be offered include:
o HOT SAIMIN & HOT COCOA at Historic Spencer House, served by Kamehameha School’s West Hawai’i Association of Teachers and Parents.
o FRIED BEEF TACOS & WATER at Bank of Hawaii corner, served by Waimea Middle School Leadership Students.
o KANAʻiʻS ONO BOX LUNCHES at the Shell Station corner.
o BURGERS, HOT DOGS, BEVERAGES & TREATS, served by Parker School ‘ohana on front lawn.
- Luas: Portaluas will be placed along the parade route. On parade day, North Hawai’i Community Hospital is unable to provide public restrooms.
- SPONSORS & EVENT PARTNERS: Waimea Community Association, Waimea Center, Puna Plantation Hawai’i, Ltd., KTA SuperStores, Rotary Club of North Hawai’i, Rotary International, Parker Ranch Center, Waimea’s beloved truckers, Around The Clock, North Hawai’i Community Hospital, Big Island Portables, W.M. Keck Observatory, Canada-France-Hawai’i Telescope, Costco-Kona, Waimea Instant Printing, Securitas, Waimea Outdoor Circle, S&R Trucking, Waimea Middle School, Parker School, Parker School Trust Corp. DBA Waimea Community Education, American Savings Bank, New Hope Christian Fellowship, Ace Hardware, Mana Christian ‘Ohana and the County of Hawai’i (Department of Parks & Recreation & South Kohala Community Policing).
WINTER STARGAZING PARTY AFTER WAIMEA CHRISTMAS PARADE: 7-10 p.m., Sat., Dec. 6 at Canada-France-Hawai’i Telescope’s Waimea headquarters. CFHT astronomers and members of the West Hawai’i Astronomy Club to host Open House and “Ask An Astronomer” talks. Free and all invited – includes warm refreshments. Info: Mary Beth Laychak (885-3121).
PARKER RANCH CENTER’S ‘BIG ISLAND GIVING TREE’ CELEBRATION: Noon-3 p.m., Sun., Dec. 7. PRC’sFireside Food Court. Emcee Penny Keli’i Vredenburg will welcome community to enjoy entertainment including the HPA Hand Bell Choir, Aulani’s hula halau and Youth Rock North – all delightful youth groups. Throughout the program, donations to the “Giving Tree” will be accepted and pictures with Santa will be taken by the Waimea Lions and North Hawai’i Hospice. Info: Rhonda Bell (880-1984) or Nancy Carr Smith (896-2239). All invited!
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Below are links to a two-part interview regarding the Keauhou Aquifer with Roy Hardy, the ground water program manager for the Commission on Water Resource Management. The National Park Service has filed to have the aquifer designated as a state water management area, a move which will have major consequences for the future of Kona.
Waimea Community Association (WCA) is changing its monthly meeting from the first Thursday in November to the second Thursday – Nov. 13, 2014 – to present a facilitated panel discussion about the National Parks Service (NPS) petition to the Hawai’i State Commission on Water Resource Management regarding the Keauhou aquifer.
While the Keauhou aquifer is not directly connected to the Waimea region, the petition could have significant impact on all of West Hawai’i, so the WCA Board has confirmed NPS’ Kaloko-Honokohau National Historic Park Superintendent Tammy Duchesne as a panel member to discuss the first-ever for Hawaiʻi Island petition to designate an aquifer as a water management area.
Duchesne says NPS “filed a petition in September 2013 because our mission requires us to act, and acting now offers everyone the best opportunity to balance water protection with water use for future economic growth.” The State Water Resource Management Commission is expected to make a determination on the petition this December.
Riley Smith, president of Lanihau Properties, will speak against the petition as the representative of an 80-plus-year kama’aina company with extensive landholdings in the Honokohau region. Smith, an engineer by training, will discuss hydrology studies by the late Steve Bowles and others including the County Department of Water Supply which conclude that there is no evidence that existing pumping of water from the aquifer has adversely affected the resource. Further, he and other North Kona landowners believe a water management designation will have significant adverse economic and social consequences for everyone who lives and works in, or otherwise depends on Kona for goods, services, health care, education and even air transportation.
Duchesne, who has headed up Kaloko-Honokohau NHP since August 2013, has a BA in anthropology, MA degrees in teaching and Micronesian studies, and a graduate certificate in Museum Studies. She began her park service career as Curator and then Chief of Cultural Resources at War in the Pacific National Historical Park on Guam and American Memorial Park in Saipan.
Smith, a lifelong resident of Hawaiʻi, has a Bachelors in civil engineering and a Masters in business administration, and is former Deputy Chief Engineer for the County of Hawaiʻi Department of Public Works and former Hawaiʻi County Water Board Chair. He also served on the Steering Committee for the South Kohala Community Development Plan.
Moderating the panel discussion will be Hawai’i Island news woman Sherry Bracken with Hawai’i Public Radio. She also is Public Affairs Director for Mahalo Broadcasting and host of the Sunday interview show “Island Issues” for LAVA 105.3fm and KKOA 107.7fm.
The panel discussion will provide time for attendees to ask written questions.
Also on the Nov. 13 Town Meeting Agenda will be a briefing on County Council business by Council Members Margaret Wille (Dist. 9) and Valerie Poindexter (Dist. 1), and an update on the 2015 Waimea Ocean Film Festival.
As always at WCA Town Meetings, food pantry donations are suggested. Attendees are urged to either contribute cash or by check, though non-perishable food items are also welcome. Checks may be payable directly to the food pantry so the donation is tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. To support our local Food Pantry, in addition to cash and checks (receipts available), KTA Sav-a-Tape receipts and Foodland Maika’i Rewards, extra produce such as citrus, greens or avocados are welcome. If residents are unable to attend the WCA Town Meeting, donations to the food pantry may be delivered to Annunciation Church office during business hours.
For information, call WCA Vice President Patti Cook (937-2833)