Q: I've been following the proceedings on the Old Wailuku Post Office with interest. Now that the site is being used for parking, who gets to park there and how were those people chosen?
A: The parking lot is being used for county employees to help alleviate the strain on limited parking available on Wailuku side streets and in the municipal lot near Market Street. The employees were granted parking based on their position at the top of the very long wait list for employee parking stalls. Many of those who received a permit had waited about 10 years to get a parking stall.
Q: I have called the Maui Humane Society on numerous occasions concerning unleashed dogs in my Kahului neighborhood to no avail. Animals can be unpredictable, and the dogs have been pooping in the yards of neighbors. As I'm writing this at 6 a.m., one dog is on the loose waiting for an accident to happen. The dogs can also be seen on the loose after 5 p.m. after business hours. In the past when I called the Humane Society to report the problem, a field officer came out while the dogs were loose in her presence. After she left, the dogs were still loose. The situation is beyond my control. What can be done to resolve this kind of neglect and nuisance?
A: It could be that the animal control officer was not able to determine which dogs lived at which residence, and that the officer tried but was unable to catch the dogs. I asked Jocelyn Bouchard of the Humane Society about your situation, and she said that it's important to determine which home(s) the dog(s) belong to, so the owner(s) can be warned and/or cited for a leash law violation. She also indicated that neighbors can take photos, even with a cellphone, to provide evidence of the dogs running loose off-property. This evidence is grounds for a citation even if the dogs were not personally witnessed off-property by the responding officer. The county now offers dog owners a dog park in Central Maui at Keopuolani Park, so that dogs can enjoy running free and socializing in a controlled environment. We are working on an Upcountry dog park and will continue to provide new areas for responsible dog owners to enjoy their pets without endangering and inconveniencing others.
Q: We were at Ka'a Point Beach Park recently, and while my young son swam in the designated swim area (fishpond) some kitesurfers approached the pond at high rates of speed very close to my son. My wife called the state Department of Land and Natural Resources enforcement number as we were instructed to by the lifeguards as well as by various county/state agencies. She was only able to leave a message. The area in question is a "designated swim-only zone," so I need to know if this law going to be enforced? Please let me know whether my child will be able to swim safely in the designated swim zone at Ka'a Point. Mr. Mayor, please don't let a serious injury to an unsuspecting swimmer be the catalyst to have the signage installed. It is only a matter of time before a serious injury occurs to other beach users.
A: I have received several inquiries about the dangers presented when both swimmers and kiters are in the water at Ka'a Point. According to the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, Ka'a Point is designated as swimming-only at the pond. County ocean safety officials have been working in conjunction with state officials to address this situation. Some background: The county's jurisdiction is from the high-water mark and up. Jurisdiction from the high-water mark to the low mean water mark is DLNR-Land Division and from the low mean water mark to three miles out to sea is DLNR-Boating Division. DLNR's Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) officers are tasked with enforcement. DLNR is planning signage for the area so that existing rules can be properly enforced. Rule amendments are not being proposed at this time. Members of the public who would like to request or propose a rule change may write to DLNR Chairman William Aila, P.O. Box 621, Honolulu 96809 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The amendment process, which is lengthy, would require a public hearing and approval by the land board. For more information on DOCARE, go to the website dlnr.hawaii.gov/docare/. To report a violation, call 643-3567.
Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your Maui County related questions to Mayor Alan Arakawa by email at email@example.com, 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.