Using eminent domain would have saved millions

Missionaries came to Hawaii in 1820. By l893, they were powerful enough to overthrow the Hawaiian monarchy. By then, two-thirds of all the land in Hawaii was in foreign hands.

Pioneer Mill started operations in l862. It had very little land at its beginning, but ended up owning thousands of acres of land when it ceased operation in l999. How did it acquire this land? Hawaiians leased their lands to the mill. When those leases expired, the mill continued to pay a dollar an acre in tax. After the requisite number of years had passed, the mill went to court and claimed the land through adverse possession.

The County Council was loath to assert eminent domain in the Launiupoko land dispute even though it could have saved county taxpayers millions of dollars. Why?

Tom Hansen