We can’t continue to ignore need for affordable housing

I recently wrote to our new farm people to say I was happy they were here. I mentioned the need for affordable housing, thinking there may be some land not good for farming that could be devoted to affordable housing. Not having a response is understood.

I have been here over 50 years and what I could not help but notice is that Maui’s advance, while lovely, the growth was done from the top down. The best system of growth is done from the bottom up. An example is we would, for some time now, have had an adequate hospital had we followed the bottom-up plan. Also, we have little or no affordable housing for working people and even for many small-business owners who are paying two rents. Many are crowded two families in one home.

I get it that developers are not interested in low or no profit from low-cost housing. Maui cannot afford having only high-cost housing to rent or buy. We cannot continue to ignore the need for the housing for what are now, or will soon be, the maximum number of residents.

Let’s have our county find a small number of properties that can be used to do something before we have very many on the streets. How about a tiny percentage of money spent by developers be allocated to develop low-cost rentals? It should not take more than average brain power to figure this out.

Pippo Schillaci

Makawao

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