Urgent Advisories & Town Meeting Schedule 2017

2017 WCA TOWN MEETING SCHEDULE: 5:15-7 p.m., First Thursdays - usually in Waimea School Cafeteria (unless notified):

•Thurs., Jan. 4, 2018 – 2018 Legislative Preview (including possible purchase of vacant lot adjacent to post office and school), and exploring sustainable agriculture, food security and self-reliance.

•Thurs., Feb. 1, 2018 – Hawaiian Ethos – the licensed medical marijuana producers/distributors here in Lalamilo Farmlots

Waimea Cmty Assn July 7, 2016 Candidate Forum Draws Large Voter Turnout To Meet, Discuss Community Concerns & Priorities with Candidates In Critical August 13 Primary Election

A huge warm MAHALO to everyone who participated in and contributed to WCA’s Non-Partisan Primary Election Candidate Forum at HPA’s Taylor Commons.  More than 160 attended – including Waimea residents along with friends from North Kohala, Waikoloa and Hamakua – and participated in thoughtful discourse with candidates about the future of our community, our families, our island, state and world. It was up close and personal, fair and even-handed – and reinforced how fortunate we are to live here in Waimea/North Hawai’i/Moku o Keawe…thank you to our candidates, our forum partners and facilitators, Sherry Bracken, HPA and mostly to our community for really caring deeply about this special place and being willing to do the “heavy lifting” required to exercise our right and privilege as voters!

Mahalo to professional photographer Jonathan Rawle who volunteered to take pictures of the forum!

WCA 2016 Candidate Forum - Candidate Lineup - JR

WCA 2016 Candidate Forum - Engaged Voters - JR-2

WCA 2016 Candidate Forum - Thoughtful Discourse - JR-1

WCA 2016 Candidate Forum - Sherry Bracken Moderating-1  WCA 2016 Candidate Forum - Engaged Voters - JR-5

Big Island Video News feature about WCA’s July 7, 2016 Candidate Form – click here: http://www.bigislandvideonews.com/2016/07/09/video-political-candidate-speed-dating-in-waimea/st_refDomain=www.facebook.com&st_refQuery=/l.php?u=https://shar.es/1lxk4O&h=dAQGx-yzs&enc=AZPn48zsl3b_edr9WdGSRH2WQhEjPqKEi_t_pIRxQFD0IY51BpRQk3LxT8tS8BBKX0-HXcErcrQ35hpCB_DJd6QhKQOOHbZ0cS8S_4qz8Gnh-AzW4_PrKYbcZex0y0cUJCXyNLVqKnamJ1iXh0vWPoRhg4KPIfgPSk2tl8TuhVE2vmjD50rnu1fdn26eysY3pvm_9QYN_3Am2i0e2gt9nu_S&s=1

PURPOSE of WCA’s NON-PARTISAN PRIMARY ELECTION CANDIDATE FORUM: To educate voters and encourage voting in the all-important August 13, 2016 Primary Election when many Hawai’i Island races are expected to be effectively decided.  Candidates in spotlighted races included:

  • Hawai’i County mayoral race with invited candidates Pete Hoffmann, Harry Kim, Wally Lau and Shannon McCandless;
  • Hawai’i County Council District 1 with invited candidate Valerie Poindexter, who is running unopposed;
  • Hawai’i County Council District 9 with invited candidates Tim Richards and Margaret Wille;
  • State House District 7 with invited candidates Jeffery Coakley, Cindy Evans and David Tarnas.

The forum was facilitated by newswoman Sherry Bracken, who began the program with candidates introducing themselves and sharing their reasons for seeking public office and their top three priorities for the North Hawai’i district and island.  Then, candidates participated in “speed dating” that involved candidates meeting with small groups of voters to discuss issues and answer questions, and then moved on to the next small group.  A volunteer monitor at each table assisted each group in this portion of the program.

Co-hosting the forum with WCA were North Hawai’i Rotary, Hawai’i Preparatory Academy, Waimea Middle School, Friends of the Future/Baby Steps For Stronger Big Island Families, Mala’ai School Garden, Habitat for Humanity – West Hawai’i, Canada-France-Hawai’i Telescope and Hawai’i Wildfire Management Organization.

Healthy snacks were provided by co-hosting organizations and the Blue Zones Project – North Hawai’i, along with hot coffee by Starbucks and herbal iced tea by Mala’ai School Garden

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WCA GENERAL ELECTION FORUM: 5:15 p.m., Thurs., Oct. 6. Waimea School Cafeteria.  (Races to be spotlighted to be determined after the Primary Election.)

2016 Elections Schedule

Voter Registration Deadlines

  • Primary Election: July 14, 2016
  • General Election: October 10, 2016

Mailed Absentee Ballot Request Deadlines

  • Primary Election: August 6, 2016
  • General Election: Nov. 1, 2016

Absentee Walk-In Voting

  • Primary Election: August 1-11, 2016
  • General Election: Oct. 25 – Nov. 5, 2016

WALK-IN VOTING IN WAIMEA:  Waimea Community Center (65-1260 Kawaihae Road) – Monday thru Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon.


Primary Election Day

  • August 13, 2016 (Saturday): Walk-In Voting – 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

General Election Day

  • November 8, 2016 (Tuesday): (same hours)

If you are not registered to vote, or have moved or changed your name, click here to register or update your registration:  http://elections.hawaii.gov/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/VR-Form-English.pdf


Past WCA Town Meetings:

June 2 Town Meeting: How Did the 2016 State Legislature Impact/Benefit Waimea/North Hawai’i? 

The 2016 Legislature came to a close in early May – how did our community do?  What benefits received?  What issues addressed?  What challenges outstanding?  State Sen. Lorraine Inouye and Rep. Cindy Evans will review legislative outcomes including Capitol Improvement Project (CIP) and Grant In Aid (GIA) funding received during  Waimea Community Association’s June 2, 2016 Town Meeting in Waimea School Cafeteria.

Also, Hawai’i County’s newly appointed Interim Director of Civil Defense Ed Teixeira, a long time resident of Waimea and experienced leader in emergency preparedness, will provide an overview of CD issues and priorities as he takes over the reigns from former CD Director Darryl Oliveira.

The agenda also will include:

  • A Wildfire Prevention Briefing by Pablo Beimler with Hawai’i Wildfire Management Organization — which is very timely given the ongoing drought;
  • An update on Hawai’i County Council business by Council Members Val Poindexter and Margaret Wille;
  • The latest on The Kohala Center’s community-driven initiative to support Coqui Free Waimea; and
  • An invitation from a consortium of Waimea groups to assist with rebuilding the historic rock wall fronting Minuke’ole Park led by members of the Royal Order of Kamehameha Moku O Kohala, Waimea Preservation Association, AYSO, Waimea Hawaiian Civic Club and others.

Everyone is invited to WCA  Town Meetings and there is no charge though membership is urged in the not-for-profit community organization.

                                          * * * * *

May 5 Town Meeting:  Rapid ‘Ohi’a Death (ROD) Threatens Hawai’i’s Native Forests; What Our Community Must Do To Become “Protectors of the Kohala Forest”

ROD is a truly devastating disease threatening Hawai’i Island’s native forests and watershed.  Dr. Flint Hughes, Research Ecologist with the US Forest Service, shared the latest research, policy decisions and recommendations to control spread of the disease at the WCA May 5 Town Meeting. To learn more about becoming “protectors of the Kohala forest” which, to date, does not appear to have been infected, go to: www.rapidohiadeath.org 

Or “like”  www.facebook.com/rapidohiadeath

If you suspect ROD in your area, contact: 

Dr. Flint Hughes, USDA Forest Service: fhughes@fs.fed.us or call: 808-854-2617 or email Corie Yanger: cmyanger@hawaii.edu

Dr. Hughes, Corie and others are available for community briefings too.

April 7 Town Meeting: How An Electric Utility         Co-op Might Reduce Hawai’i Island’s Costly Electricity Rates – And The Kohala Center’s New ‘Ainahoi Program’ To Return Land To Pre-Contact Productivity

Even with the cost of oil down to under $50 a barrel from over $100, Hawai’i Island electric utility customers continue to pay one of the highest per kilowatt hour rates in the nation for electricity.  How to change this strangling scenario for residents, schools, hospitals, farms, ranches and businesses and also perhaps shift away from dependency on fossil fuel by creating a locally owned cooperative similar to the one in operation on Kaua’i, will be one of two top agenda items at the Waimea Community Association Town Meeting, 5:15-7 p.m., Thurs., April 7, 2016 at Waimea School cafeteria. 

Also on the agenda will be an update by The Kohala Center’s new President & CEODr.KamanaBeamer_2013-14SyDr. Kamana Beamer of Waimea about the organization’s recent $8M land “gift” from private donors that is enabling them to launch the Ainahoi Program, which will go beyond protecting the land to returning it to the crops and practices that might have been found on this Kohala Mountain Road property hundreds of years ago.

The entire community is invited and there is no charge to attend town meetings though annual membership is urged.

Jan TenBruggencate 2016Briefing the community on what an electric co-op might mean for Hawai’i island will be               Jan TenBruggencate of Kaua’i.  TenBruggencate, a long time now retired journalist with The Honolulu Advertiser, operates the communications consulting firm Island Strategy LLC on Kaua`i.  He is in his seventh year as a member of the board of the Kaua`i Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC), and in his second year as board chairman. He was raised in the pineapple fields of Moloka’i and is the author of more than a dozen books, including recent histories of the Lihue Plantation sugar mill and the 150-year history of Grove Farm Co., one of Kaua`i’s oldest companies.

He will share a brief historical review about how KIUC bought the investor-owned Kauai Electric and began running the Garden Island’s electric utility in 2002. After 14 years, the cooperative has paid off more than a quarter of the debt from buying the utility. It has also built the island from 8 percent renewable generation to 40 percent, with more coming. KIUC has received national recognition for its aggressive development of solar power.

KIUC’s experience is particularly relevant to Hawai’i Island in part because a group of community and business leaders here recently established Hawai’i Island Energy Cooperative, a Hawaii-registered 421C non-profit cooperative association, to explore and promote a comprehensive approach to develop an integrated, renewable and sustainable energy strategy for the Big Island.  Potential merits of such a community-based, cooperative ownership structure for electric utility service on the island include:

  • Local, democratic control over the island’s energy infrastructure, providing greater benefits and retaining any excess over the cost of operations for island residents;
  • Potentially lower electric costs through tax exempt status, lower cost of capital and no shareholder profits, and; and
  • Developing and emphasizing island-produced fuels to provide an energy source for both electric generation and transportation sectors.

The meeting agenda also will include an update on County Council business by Waimea Council Members Valerie Poindexter (District 1) and Margaret Wille (District 9).

As always, attendees at WCA monthly meetings 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.

For more information, call Patti Cook (937-2833) or go to www.Facebook.com/WaimeaCommunityAssociation.

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WCA Membership: Annual dues are $15/Individual; $25/Family – for January-December, so membership renewal is suggested.  WCA is a 501(c)3 non profit so dues are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.  Dues pay for WCA’s modest expenses – hosting this website, paying for Constant Contact eblasts, printing agendas, lei for guests and the occasional special event such as the recent Mahalo Potluck for First Responders though most everything served was provided by generous members and community businesses.  For more information, call President Patti Cook (808-937-2833) or email: cookshi@aol.com.  Mahalo!  

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First Responders 2-4-16_Cropped More

A Very Warm Mahalo to everyone who attended the Feb. 4 WCA Town Meeting to thank our First Responders for their dedication to protecting our well-being 24/7!  Special thanks to the responders able to attend and to everyone who contributed to a lovely dinner!

This letter was read to the First Responders to let them know WHY we so value their service to our community:

Feb. 4, 2016


I would like to send a very special Mahalo to all of the Hawaii County Fire Fighters, Volunteer fire fighters, and all of the first responders who protected Kawaihae Village during the last 2 brush fires. My family and I have lived in the village for over 40 years and have never had a brush fire come within 32 feet from our home before. We could not believe our eyes when we saw the height and speed of those flames. The quick response, hard work and countless hours put into saving our homes by all of you is greatly appreciated. When we came to the various fire stations and police stations with a small token to say thank you, you all humbly said, “This is our job.” Well, to you we say, “You saved our home and our village, no lives or homes were lost and we thank you very much!”

The Bell ‘Ohana

Leighton, Rhonda, Deighton and Neighton

First Responders Mahalo Cake from KTA SuperStores 2-4-16

Special thanks for kokua with dinner to our WCA Board of Directors, KTA Super Stores, Tropical Dreams Ice Cream, Guy & Joeliene Schutte, John & Carol Buck, SODEXO and Parker Ranch!  We also thank all of our WCA members and community friends who contributed!

PS:  Warm mahalo too to everyone who contributed at the February Town Meeting to the Annunciation Food Pantry – your generosity enabled us to give $505 to the pantry!



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