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Agenda Item

HLU-2(1) Direct Referral HOUSING PROJECTS UNDER CHAPTER 2.97, MAUI COUNTY CODE: RESOLUTIONS 23-78, 23-79, AND 23-80, RELATING TO THE HALE MAHAOLU KE KAHUA RENTAL HOUSING PROJECT (WAILUKU) (HLU-2(1))

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    Guest User 12 months ago

    Dear Housing and Land Use Committee, I am opposed to this development for multiple reasons. The land has been in a Hawaiian family's care for generations. The county should take care not to oppress an indigenous family's rights, much like the United States did in the past with the Native Americans. It is an ugly stain on the country's history and this will be a stain on the county if this project is approved.

    I support Councilmember Keani Rawlins-Fernandez's resolution 23-42 to swap the 11.5 acres of this land for 23 acres of land in Puunene as the right solution because there is infrastructure in place, roads that will not be clogged for hours during peak traffic times, a location that is central to employment centers.

    The subject site parcel lacks everything that makes this development smart: the EA pointed out the deficiencies of the water and sewer lines that cannot handle additional capacity, it goes again the Maui Island Plan and the Wailuku-Kahului Community plans by spreading urban sprawl; can one even delineate where Kahului and Wailuku separate in “town.” If one is not from Maui, and asked to figure this out on their own, it would be difficult to pinpoint a section or area that delineates these two towns. Why do the same thing from town to Waiehu? Keep spreading sprawl when it would be in the county’s interest to improve what is currently in place that is being unused, is an eye sore with multiple unused commercial spaces that are being further degraded by addicted homeless and out-of-state new coming homeless to continue to live in our streets. This is an opportunity on many levels for our county to be recognized as a hero for revitalizing these unused and dilapidated structures, increase economic activity in our core center of the island and provide much needed housing in walkable areas where there are sidewalks, gutters, storm drains, cross walks, street lights, schools in close proximity, employment opportunities, police and fire protection, retail food stores and medical facilities all nearby.

    And who will these units be for? The homeless that have been shipped to Hawaii? Or will it be for our true local families that are living in multi-generational households in cramped quarters? What guarantees are there that these units will be for local people and not the billions of people around the globe who just “want” to live here? The county has to develop housing for its own people, not the world.

    I will provide some excerpts from the Maui Island plan and Wailuku-Kahului plans below in support of my request for the council to deny this development in such a rural location below. Mahalo for your consideration and your work for the county.

    Sincerely,
    Kathren Rosales
    kathrenbade@gmail.com

    From the Maui Island Plan
    7.1.1.c Discourage developing or subdividing productive agricultural lands for residential uses in
    which the residents would be the primary use and any agricultural activities would be
    secondary uses.
    7.1.1.e Focus urban growth, to the extent practicable, away from productive and important
    agricultural lands.
    7.1.1.f Strongly discourage the conversion of productive and important agricultural lands (such
    as sugar, pineapple, and other produce lands) to rural or urban use, unless justified during
    the General Plan update, or when other overriding factors are present.
    7.1.1.g Further develop the requirements for agricultural assessments found under Section
    19.510, MCC.
    7.1.1.h Provide incentives for landowners to preserve and protect agricultural lands from
    development through the use of TDR/PDR, tax credits, easement programs, or similar
    means.
    7.1.1.i Promote the use of U.S.D.A. Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program grants to fund
    the acquisition of conservation easements on eligible agricultural lands.
    7.1.1.j Require all major developments adjacent to agricultural lands to provide an appropriate
    and site-specific agricultural protection buffer as part of a required site plan.
    7.1.1.k Support and promote the viability of Maui's agricultural businesses through property tax
    incentives and other programs and subsidies.
    7.1.1.l Encourage future community plan efforts to identify lands within the County Agricultural
    zoning district that are primarily being used for large-lot residential or rural use and
    b. consider such lands for reclassification to an appropriate County Rural zone.

    Regarding bullet points 7.1.1.e and 7.1.1f, the county council most recently last week had the opportunity to land swap this prime agricultural land for a more prudent, centrally zoned parcel in Kahului, with appropriate infrastructure in place and within closer proximity to the islands employment centers. Yet the council voted AGAINST this in direct opposition to the two plans for our island and subject communities.

    From the Wailuku-Kahului Community Plan:
    • preservation of scenic vistas and shoreline resources and the expansion of public recreational opportunities is also emphasized in the Wailuku-Kahului Community Plan.
    The protection and recognition of historic, archaeological and cultural resources in the region is another intended effect of the plan. And, the protection of agricultural lands is an inherent part of the plan.
    Finally, public facility and infrastructure improvements should not lag behind development in the region. Upon adoption of this plan, it shall be required that adequate facilities and infrastructure will be concurrent with future development. The land use designations on the community plan land use map are not an assertion that infrastructure will be provided to these areas, but merely that it would be appropriate to develop these areas as designated on the maps--if the necessary infrastructure and
    services are available.

    • Economic activity
    Support the establishment of agricultural parks for truck farming, piggery operations, bee keeping and other diversified agricultural operations within larger unsubdivided agricultural parcels and in locations that are compatible with residential uses.

    • Environment
    1. Preserve agricultural lands as a major element of the open space setting that which borders the various communities within the planning region. The close relationship between open space and developed areas is an important characteristic of community form.
    2. Protect nearshore waters by ensuring that discharges from waste disposal meet water quality standards. Continuous monitoring of existing and future waste disposal systems is necessary to ensure their efficient operation.
    3. Protect shoreline wetland resources and flood plain areas as valuable natural systems and open space resources. These natural systems are important for flood control, as habitat area for wildlife, and for various forms of recreation. Future development actions should emphasize flood prevention and protection of the natural landscape.

    Land Use
    1. Ensure that adequate lands are available to support the region’s present and future agricultural activities.
    2. Identify prime or productive agricultural lands, and develop appropriate regulations for their protection.

    14. Maintain physical separation between traditional towns and villages in the region. Where possible, provide specific design or landscape elements, such as open space buffers or changes in streetscape, to clearly delineate the boundary between Kahului and Wailuku. Maintain open space around traditional
    rural areas, such as Waikapu and Waihe‘e, to provide a sense of community and to prevent envelopment of these areas by urban expansion.
    15. Provide a substantial greenway or greenbelt to serve as a buffer zone, line of demarcation, or definition between Wailuku and Waikapu, and between Waikapu and Ma‘alaea, in order to prevent the continuation of urban sprawl. Changes in streetscapes could include landscaping and agricultural planting materials that reflect the character of each community, and are utilized to delineate a substantial boundary between Kahului and Wailuku.

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    Guest User 12 months ago

    Submitting this article of interest - https://www.civilbeat.org/2023/03/5-tools-to-disarm-the-weaponization-of-affordable-housing/

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    Guest User 12 months ago

    Dear Maui Council,
    This is prime agricultural land, sensitive watershed area with flooding already on the one local road and limited infrastructure in this area to accommodate such a growth.
    I second the suggestion to:
    Dear Council, Please defer this until you can take up the proposal for a land swap offered by Keani Rawlins Fernandez where they can build 5x more affordable units if that is their intention. If you must consider this issue first, please read the EAS for the property. It is inadequate beyond the issues being mentioned and a full EIS should be done. Mahalo.
    Sincerely,
    Dr Stephanie Yan

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    Ann Pitcaithley 12 months ago

    I oppose this project. Please give this land back to the Hawaiian Ohana , who are the rightful owners. There are significant cultural and environmental impacts, contrary to their studies. Flooding, wetlands, iwi kupuna, land right conflicts, horrendous traffic gridlock located on a dangerous highway where it intersects with Waiehu Beach Road, no proximity to local goods and services. Infrastructure should already have been in place prior to this proposed development. Councilmember Keani Rawlins-Fernandez's resolution 23-42 to swap the 11.5 acres of this land for 23 acres of land in Puunene is the right solution if only the parties could consent to it.

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    Guest User 12 months ago

    From: MLONG16@hawaii.rr.com <MLONG16@hawaii.rr.com>
    Sent: Tuesday, March 7, 2023 9:43:21 AM
    To: Keani N. Rawlins <Keani.Rawlins@mauicounty.us>; Tamara A. Paltin <Tamara.Paltin@mauicounty.us>; Shane M. Sinenci <Shane.Sinenci@mauicounty.us>; Gabe Johnson <Gabe.Johnson@mauicounty.us>
    Subject: FW: MEO affordable housing Waiehu Project

    I wondered why MEO was grading Ke Kahua this past Saturday, March 4th? Was it to show no flooding goes on in this area. Why is no one talking about the huge gultch that runs Behind this property. It has deepened over the 40 years that I have lived next to it. It has run heavier then in the past. I have videos to prove it runs and gets blocked at the culvert under Waiehu Beach Road. This project is not appropriate for this parcel of land. You have lack of infrastructure, lack of parking, flooding in this area, and the list goes on. We have a disaster waiting to happen. It would be better to plan in an urban area, close to transportation, stores, etc. Mahalo
    -----------------------------------------
    From: "Rene Long" <808mapuana@gmail.com>
    To: mlong16@hawaii.rr.com
    Cc:
    Sent: Tuesday March 7 2023 9:25:02AM
    Subject: MEO affordable housing Waiehu

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    Guest User 12 months ago

    Dear Council, Please defer this until you can take up the proposal for a land swap offered by Keani Rawlins Fernandez. If you must consider this issue first, please read the EAS for the property. It is inadequate beyond the issues being mentioned and a full EIS should be done.
    Thank you,
    Gail Nagasako
    President of PWAMaui.org