Lona Ridge would have to charge a lot

On Oct. 25, the Maui Planning Commission decided to allow Leona Wilson’s request for commercial activities to occur at her residence above Wailuku Heights. For financial reasons, Ms. Wilson wanted 48 events per year with 100 guests. The MPC reduced this to 15 commercial events per year with a maximum of 65 guests. At least one MPC commissioner was misguided by the fact that many pro-Lona Ridge supporters stood to make lots and lots of money from Lona Ridge (e.g., shuttle driver, wedding planner, architect, photographer, etc.).

For Ms. Wilson, the special use permit approval is a hollow victory. Using a guesstimate of 2 to 3 grand to rent her house and property at 48 times a year, would mean 96 to 144 grand. Now, with paid events limited to 15, Lona Ridge could only get 30-45 grand. If the Lona Ridge goal is to make 100 grand, divide that by 15 events, and it means that the rental now has to be over 6 grand instead of 2-3 grand.

Lona Ridge will not be a place for most locals to use, and likely will only be for the 1-percenters or the 0.1-percenters.

Gary Wong