Ask the Mayor

Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.

Q: We keep hearing that the Haiku Road repairs (below Fukushima Store) are nearing completion. It seems like this is taking too long. And the opening of a new subdivision entrance at Kauhikoa Road is imminent, which will only serve to exacerbate the already unsafe conditions on Kauhikoa Road. This detour has gone on long enough! When can we expect the roadwork to be completed?

A: I am very pleased to let you know that the Haiku Road Culvert Improvements project is virtually complete, with a final inspection scheduled for later this week. Haiku Road may be opened as soon as Friday if no outstanding issues need to be addressed, and our Public Works Department team is doing its best to get it open before school starts the following week. It was tough to make progress many weeks due to rain, because work could not be done in the drainage-way when water was flowing. But the day of completion has arrived, and I would like to thank the residents for their patience with the numerous weather delays.

Q: When I walked into the Kahului Division of Motor Vehicle and Licensing Service Center last week, I noticed a machine in the lobby area. I asked a staff member about it and was told it was for those who were checking in for appointments they had made online. What kinds of appointments can be made online, and how do I go about doing that? I would love to save more time on my visits to the DMVL.

A: The DMVL’s new online appointment system can indeed help you save time at the Kahului DMVL Service Center at the Maui Mall. Visit to make appointments for your driver’s license or permit, state ID or initial disabled parking placard. You will need to bring ID when you arrive for your appointment and be sure to bring all required documents (click on the link on the website to see the documents required for each type of application). Plan to arrive 15 minutes early to check in at the self-service kiosk so you can be entered into the queue and be seen at your appointed time. DMVL staff has been working hard to install and test this new online system to allow users more efficiency, to save time and to have convenient access to the appointment system through the internet anytime, anywhere. Please try out this new system and let us know how it works for you, as staff will continue to make adjustments as new services and locations are added.

Q: I was born and raised in Kailua, went to Huelo Elementary School and graduated from St. Anthony Girls’ School. I now reside in Kaneohe with my family. We are home now for our family ohana reunion and staying at our family estate in Kailua, the home of our youth. My question to you is: Who is responsible for the roadside cleanup from the airport to Kailua and beyond? The County of Maui or the State of Hawaii? It is noted that the grass and other shrubbery are much overgrown, hindering the view of oncoming traffic, especially at the yielding sites. I’m just reflecting on the days of my youth when the roadsides were kept very well-manicured. Please advise: Is it due to budgetary restraints? Keep Maui and its aina beautiful for us, the Keiki o Ka Aina, and the numerous tourists that travel this route to Hana daily. Mahalo.

A: Welcome home, if even for a brief while to enjoy gathering together with your ohana. Hana Highway is cared for by the state Department of Transportation Highways Division, Maui District. I’m not sure about the reason you noticed overgrowth, but it’s possible that the area received extra rainfall in between mowing cycles. If you have a specific concern, you can find contact information for the Maui DOT Highways office at

* Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your Maui County related questions to Mayor Alan Arakawa by email at, by phone at 270-7855 or by mail at 200 S. High St., ninth 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