Ask the Mayor

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

Q: I read a news article about a guy who started a new portable bar business where he brings his cocktail-making skills to private parties. Since there has been much discussion about the nonprofits being required to provide documentation for the alcohol permits for their fundraisers, I started to wonder whether this guy also needs a liquor license for this type of business. Since he’s getting paid to bring and serve alcohol, is it different than a host simply pouring drinks for their party guests?

A: Yes, it is different. While further research would be required to determine this particular business’ status, it’s safe to say that if the mobile bar is providing the liquor for the event, and if the business owner is charging a fee to provide the liquor stock for the party, a liquor license would be required.

Q: If I need to have my rubbish cart replaced due to damage from the automated rubbish truck, will I have to pay for a new one?

A: No. If the damage was caused by the county residential refuse collection truck, you do not have to pay for a new cart. However, when folks damage the cart themselves, the charge for a replacement is $105. Please call our solid waste office in the Department of Environmental Management at 270-7720 for more information.

The following is a correction to a response that ran in last week’s column. While the Maui Veterans Highway itself is under the jurisdiction of the state Department of Transportation, the renaming of it was facilitated by the 2017 state Legislature. The state Transportation Department supported the intent of the name change but opposed the process. SB283 was introduced by Sens. Roz Baker, Lorraine Inouye, Gil Keith-Agaran, Karl Rhoads, Stanley Chang, Josh Green, Breene Harimoto and Clarence Nishihara. Companion bill HB545 was introduced by Reps. Angus McKelvey and Joe Souki.

* 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., ninth 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