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Commission proposals would change selection process for county boards

The Maui News

The Maui Charter Commission has adopted proposals to change the selection process and requirements for people serving on county boards and commissions.

Proposals adopted at the commission’s meeting on Thursday include:

• Establishing an independent nomination board that would formulate a list of qualified applicants from which the mayor would select his nominees to county boards, commissions and advisory committees.

• Repealing “political party membership” criteria.

• Changing member terms to five full years regardless of their appointment date.

The three proposals align with the commission’s goal of promoting greater representation and diversity among the county’s boards and commissions, according to a news release.

The commission also endorsed a proposal allowing electronic signatures on documents and one to remove the penalty ceiling for violations of charter provisions.

A proposed amendment to limit exemptions related to affordable housing development was deemed not appropriate for the charter and was rejected.

The commission also considered proposals related to the Planning Department. Two similar proposals to create a planning commission for each community plan area were defeated, and a vote on a proposal to establish community boards in Maui County, similar to neighborhood boards on Oahu, was deferred. Community boards and 18 remaining proposals related to planning will be discussed at the commission’s next meeting on Oct. 21.

Since convening in March, the commission has reviewed nearly 70 proposals. The panel meets every 10 years to review the County Charter, the document that guides Maui County governance. Over the next several months, commissioners will hear public testimony on almost 70 proposals related to planning, the police, other departments of the executive branch and a variety of miscellaneous and new provisions.

Proposed charter amendments are later sent to the general election ballot for the public to vote on.

To offer input on proposals being considered by the commission, visit mauichartersurvey.org. Public testimony can also be emailed to charter.commission@mauicounty.gov and should be submitted at least two business days prior to meetings to ensure timely distribution to commissioners.

For agendas, links to meetings and other information, visit mauicounty.gov/CharterCommission.

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