Department of Parks and Recreation Director Glenn Correa was "out of the office" Tuesday.
Maui County officials were maintaining that his absence was "a personnel matter" and refusing further comment.
Deputy Parks Director Brianne Savage said all communications about Correa's status were to go through the office of Mayor Alan Arakawa.
The mayor's spokesman, Rod Antone, said that all he could say was that Correa's status was a "personnel matter." He said he could not comment on Correa's status as a county employee, even though he is the director of a county department and an appointee of the mayor.
Savage reiterated the "personnel matters" response to questions about when Correa began being "out of the office" and when he might return.
A county employee with knowledge of the Correa situation said Tuesday that the parks director is on administrative leave with pay. The employee, who would speak to The Maui News only under the condition of anonymity, said that Correa has not been at work for the past two weeks and was not expected to be back this week - which would be a total of three weeks out of the office.
The employee, who once worked in the parks department, has spoken to current employees, who have said that Maui police are investigating operations at the Waiehu Municipal Golf Course involving free rounds of golf and Correa's alleged knowledge of the situation. Correa is under investigation along with the "whole department," the employee said.
Police would neither confirm nor deny that they were investigating an allegation that county employees were golfing at the Waiehu Municipal Golf Course while on county time.
Savage's response to a question about the allegation involving the golf course and a possible connection with Correa was, again, that it was a "personnel matter."
The county employee said that morale at the parks department is "very bad." Much of the concern is over the current management of the department, the official said.
As parks director, Correa earns $114,770 per year, according to Department of Personnel Services Director Lance Hiromoto.
Correa could not be reached for comment Tuesday.
* Staff Writer Rob Collias contributed to the story. Brian Perry can be reached at email@example.com.