State budget will finance roads, schools, airports

Money for construction of schools, roads and Kahului Airport improvements are among Maui’s big-ticket capital improvement projects in the state’s two-year, 2018-19 budget that lawmakers have sent to Gov. David Ige’s desk for approval.

Another $63 million was budgeted for the new Kihei high school, 11th House South Maui Rep. Kaniela Ing said. That would be on top of $27 million appropriated last year for infrastructure, and the new appropriation would go toward building the campus’s first classrooms and a cafeteria, but not an auditorium and stadium, he said.

The first phase of groundwork and the construction of wells on the high school property have been completed, Ing said.

A breakdown of budgeted capital improvements in fiscal year 2018 for Kahului Airport includes $64 million for construction of lease lots, $29.6 million for design and construction of hold room and gate improvements, $10.5 million for in-bound baggage-handling facilities, $3.1 million for design and construction of improvements to the terminal, commuter terminal, security fencing, electrical systems and other upgrades. In fiscal 2019, there’s another $9.7 million for hold room and gate improvements and $8.4 million for terminal improvements.

State lawmakers appropriated $6 million for repairs, renovations, expansion and upgrades to Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital.

Also, $1.6 million was appropriated for campus renovations and improvements at the University of Hawaii Maui College. Another $1.5 million was set aside for air-conditioning units at Kahului Elementary and Maui Waena Intermediate schools, and $1 million was budgeted for Maui High School expansion and renovation projects, including the school’s gymnasium floor, the band and choir room and the weight training-wrestling building, according to Rep. Justin Woodson (Kahului, Puunene, Old Sand Hills and Maui Lani).

Other appropriations in Woodson’s district include $6.3 million for construction of a new medium-security housing unit and related improvements at Maui Community Correctional Center.

Also in schools funding, $12.3 million was budgeted for plans, land acquisition, design and construction of an administration building at Waihee Elementary School, according to a list of capital improvement projects released by Central Maui Rep. Joe Souki.

Other money set aside for Souki’s 8th House District (Wailuku, Waikapu, Kahakuloa, Waihee, Waiehu, Puuohala) included $3 million for flood damage at the Iao Valley State Monument and $1 million for security-related improvements at Hoapili Hale, the 2nd Circuit Court building in Wailuku.

In the West Maui district represented by Rep. Angus McKelvey, there’s $70 million for an extension of the Lahaina bypass road from North Keawe Street to beyond Puukolii Road, and $18.3 million is budgeted for plans, design and construction of a ferry pier at the Lahaina Boat Harbor.

Along Mokulele Highway in Central Maui, the Pulehunui development received $17.5 million from lawmakers for development of site improvements and a sewage treatment system. The state departments of Land and Natural Resources, Hawaiian Home Lands, Public Safety and Accounting and General Services have a master plan to develop the area’s 939 acres.

In the Upcountry district represented by Rep. Kyle Yamashita, state appropriations include $5 million for an Upcountry agricultural park with matching funds from Maui County, $2 million for Haleakala Highway widening, $2 million for the design and construction of off-site water systems for Hawaiian homestead properties and $1 million for design and construction of phase 2 site improvements for 76 homestead lots in Keokea-Waiohuli.

Grants in aid to Central Maui agencies totaled nearly $3.8 million, including $1 million for the Maui Arts & Cultural Center, $750,000 for Hale Kipa Inc. and $705,000 for Ka Hale A Ke Ola Homeless Resource Centers Inc.

The Ka Hale A Ke Ola funding is for the renovation of an existing building and construction of a new building to increase its capacity for permanent supportive housing.

The 13th House District is set to receive $61.6 million in capital improvement money and $1.4 million in grants in aid, said Rep. Lynn DeCoite (East Maui, Molokai and Lanai).

Schools in the district received more than $2 million, including $1.4 million for plans, design and building renovations and other work at Lanai High and Elementary School, DeCoite said.

The biggest-ticket item for highway projects in the district is $22 million for rockfall mitigation along Hana Highway, she said. Other projects include $4 million for Hana Highway improvements such as upgrading or repairing roadways, bridges, walls, drainage structures and other facilities.

There’s $3.75 million in the budget to design a Paia bypass road, and there’s $3.25 million for development of a Hana Highway bridge preservation plan.

Lawmakers included in the budget $3 million for the design and construction of development of scattered lots improvements on Hawaiian homelands properties at Hoolehua, Molokai.

Airport projects in the 13th District amount to more than $20 million, including $7.25 million for Molokai Airport terminal and utility improvements, $4.5 million for Kalaupapa Airport improvements, $4 million for airport baseyard renovations at Hana and on Lanai, and $1 million for new restroom facilities at Lanai Airport.

And, there’s more than $3.7 million to remove the Hana Pier superstructure.

Also, Ing said lawmakers fixed a problem with a 2-year-old $500,000 appropriation for initial work on a Kaho’olawe Island Reserve Commission project to build an auditorium and cultural center near the Kihei Boat Ramp. The money had been appropriated for Kahoolawe, Hawaii, meaning the state of Hawaii, but state officials needed lawmakers to clarify that the project is in Maui County, not Hawaii County, he said.

KIRC Chairwoman Michele Chouteau McLean confirmed that and said the agency received a little more than $1 million for 15 full-time positions and operations.

And, there’s $1.5 million for plans, design, construction and equipment for native dryland forest restoration, management and maintenance on Kahoolawe, she said.

* Brian Perry can be reached at bperry@mauinews.com.