Ask the Mayor

Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.

Q: I have information that leads me to believe that work on a major electrical contract in town is being done by a contractor that is not licensed to do work in the state. Where can I find out whether they are licensed, and if not, how can I file a complaint?

A: You can contact the state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs for information on licensed contractors or to complain about an unlicensed contractor. Visit to check on a license or business registration or to file a complaint about a regulated industry, cable television, hearings office, insurance or securities. DCCA also offers consumer protection information, advocacy and education on broadband, investments, real estate and business issues.

Q: Hello from Denmark. When on holiday in your wonderful world of beautiful nature and kind people, we just had to experience the feeling of getting married barefoot on the beach. However, the fantasy did not last for long. Now, 10 years later, we find it just about hopeless to find a way to end the marriage legally. Our marriage ended more than nine years ago, but we would like to get the legal details in order. According to Hawaii law, you can get married in a heartbeat (which is big business), but there is no way you can end the marriage if you are not a resident. Maybe you would consider adding just a little loophole in the law for those non-U.S. residents caught up in this nightmare? Who knows, maybe it could result in even more weddings. I for one would love to do it again someday (if ever possible to get a divorce or annulment). I truly hope you will take some kind of action in this matter.

A: I’m sorry to hear about your marriage; however, local county government does not regulate marriages nor does it issue marriage licenses in Hawaii. Those services come under the state Department of Health. I did have a staff member look into this and while marriages fall under the state, divorces do not. Your best bet is to contact either a Maui divorce attorney or an attorney familiar with international family law, and ask if he or she has experience in these matters. Again, I’m sorry things didn’t work out. Good luck.

Q: East Maui landowners in a subdivision along Hale Pili Way have blocked the Maui County ocean easement to Uaoa Bay with cut trees. This county easement starts on Kamau Road off North Holokai Road. I would be glad to meet with county employees any time about this easement. Thanks so much for your help to keep this easement open. Happy Trails!

A: Thank you for taking the initiative to inquire about this important matter. To request that county staff look into the possibly blocked easement or other county issues, please file a Request for Service at

* Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your Maui County related questions to Mayor Alan Arakawa by email at, by phone at 270-7855 or by mail at 200 S. High St., 9th floor, Wailuku, 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the “Ask the Mayor” column; to request a personal response to a concern, email