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Ask The Mayor

Mayor Michael Victorino answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.

Q: Could you please clarify whether or not the new rental car facility at Kahului Airport actually added any additional rental cars that weren’t already available at separate rental car facilities? I see a lot of comments from people who believe there are hundreds, if not thousands, more rental cars on Maui now that they’ve opened the combined facility, and I’m very curious what is factual. Mahalo!

A: Thank you for this question because I know there have been many rumors and incorrect information that have spread about our new consolidated rental car (CONRAC) building.

My staff contacted Maui District Airports Manager Marvin Moniz, who confirmed that there has been no increase in the number of rental cars on our island. The only change rental car companies have made was moving their cars from seven sites surrounding Kahului Airport into the new building.

There is still one large lot that is holding inventory for all the rental car companies, and at certain times of the year cars may be brought in from off-island to cover holidays based on advanced bookings. However, these cars are also shipped back after the holidays.

Another fact I’d like to point out is that this facility was completely funded by our tourists, who paid for rental cars during their visit to Maui County. The CONRAC funding came from the state’s Customer Facility Charge, a daily $4.50 applied to customers who rent a car. No taxpayer dollars were used to construct the building.

Our airport generates the most funds in all of Hawaii and is the second busiest when it comes to passenger volume. It is vital our visitors pay for the impacts they are having on our island, and I believe this project moves us in that direction by funding a facility that reduces energy costs and minimizes our carbon footprint.

Q: When will the steel plate be removed and road repaired on Hololani Street in Pukalani? It’s been there since December.

A: We do not have any engineering contracts scheduled for Hololani Street at this time, but I can tell you that the steel plate will be removed this week by our Department of Water Supply.

Q: Is it possible for the County of Maui’s News Flash webpage to briefly identify where mile markers are located such as “near Olowalu General Store?” I do not think too many people are familiar where all the mile markers are posted. Mahalo!

A: Mahalo for your question and I know exactly what you mean about how us local people give directions and use landmarks rather than street names (much less mile markers). The issue, however, is that many times there are road closures in remote areas where there are no nearby landmarks. The Maui Police Department told my staff that the notices will often include a general location, such as the pali, which would give motorists a good indication of where not to drive.

We’ll continue to work on improving our public notification systems, and I would encourage you to subscribe to our Road Closure Notifications and Emergency Road Closure Notifications services by visiting www.mauicounty.gov/643/Road-Closure-Notifications, which will send you alerts via email and text messaging. These services are managed by MPD in cooperation with the County of Maui ITS Division to provide the general public, media and our visitor industry with the most up-to-the-minute information on road closures or hazards.

* Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your Maui County related questions to Mayor Michael Victorino by email at askthemayor@mauicounty.gov, 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 mayors.office@mauicounty.gov.