Letters 1-2-2013


Kealakekua Bay

A DLNR indictment

The Department of Land and Natural Resources is by far the laziest and least pro-active department in our state. Why sweep something under the tree when it’s easier to just cut it down?

The problem of illegal kayak vendors is far more than seven years old, it is more like 20. The department is so intimidated by these people that it must quarantine all of us “for a while.”

I’ll tell you by the history of this beautiful bay — there will be no enforcement — there never has been. We have tried DLNR, DOCARE, county ordinances and the police, all to no avail. These vendors can launch from private property, wait until whatever official leaves, or just ignore them, and they know it.

I offered years ago to apply for grants to fund full-time enforcement, but they weren’t interested. The one officer who was assigned there about 10 years ago just stood around talking story with the vendors.

To paraphrase: If kayaks are outlawed, only outlaws will have kayaks.

Louise Winn

Honaunau

Kohanaiki park

Restrictions ahead

As work on the Kohanaiki park is reaching completion, many members of the community who have used the park for decades have shared with me ongoing concerns about what the opening of the park will mean in the real world for them.

When we look at the planned access, placement and number of parking places, golf cart-size access road, it looks like there will be significant restrictions to access for the families who have come there for generations.

If this park was intended to maintain access to this cherished area to the community, what means were used to determine the number of parking places, (not to even begin to discuss the number of campsites, or special events like keiki surf)?

Was a survey of weekend and holiday use patterns ever done? If so what percentage of the current use by the local population will be accommodated by the parking plan?

Are we looking at another Kukio-style limited access situation?

With all the conflicts we have had over the years to maintain local access to this cherished site, I sincerely hope that is not the case.

Are there plans for “overflow” parking?

I raise these concerns in the hope they may be addressed before more conflict arises over access. Site drawings are a little abstract, but as we see the real world manifestation of those drawings, they look like they fall far short of community needs.

I hope all those with the ability to do something will come up with a realistic plan to maintain adequate community access to this special place.

I believe that, as in the past, efforts to restrict access to this area will face serious opposition.

Hopefully, we can successfully plan for continued access for the local population before it’s lost or conflict arises.

Joe Kassel

Holualoa