(BIVN) – A Hawaiʻi County Council committee advanced a measure on Tuesday in an effort to curb illegal activity in the area of James Kealoha Beach Park, aka 4-Mile, in Keaukaha.
Resolution 141-19 authorizes the temporary closure of the one-way outlet from Kealoha Beach Park, which is Keaukaha Road, on a nightly basis to prevent loitering, littering and other illegal activity.
The measure, introduced by councilwoman Sue Lee Loy, would allow for the installation of a gate at the intersection of Keaukaha Street and Kamokuna Street.
According to the language of Resolution 141-19:
WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 24- 153.3, Subsection (b) of the Hawaii County Code 1983 (2016 Edition, as amended), the Council by resolution, in consultation with the Chief of Police and the Director of Public Works, may authorize the temporary closure of a roadway stub-out, dead-end and/ or road terminus, subject to certain conditions; and
WHEREAS, Keaukaha Road is a County road that connects the western end of Kealoha Beach Park with Kamokuna Street in the district of South Hilo, and serves primarily as an outlet for visitors to Kealoha Beach Park, as noted in the attached Exhibit A; and
WHEREAS, as part of an effort to reduce illegal activity, Keaukaha Road was converted to a one-way road in 2018; and
WHEREAS, the closure of Keaukaha Road will not affect the flow of traffic or public access and adjacent landowners have been provided with written notification about the purpose and need for this temporary closure, as noted in the attached Exhibit B, and are in support of it; and
WHEREAS, the Chief of Police and the Director of Public Works support the temporary closure of Keaukaha Road, as noted in the attached Exhibit C; now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE COUNTY OF HAWAII that, pursuant to Section 24- 153. 3, Subsection (b), of the Hawaii County Code 1983 (2016 Edition, as amended), Keaukaha Road is authorized to be closed nightly for the purpose of preventing loitering, littering, and other illegal activity.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Chief of Police, the Director of Public Works, and the Director of Parks and Recreation, or their designated representatives, are requested to determine the appropriate time for evening closure and the appropriate time for morning reopening of Keaukaha Road.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this resolution is not intended to prevent the County from reopening Keaukaha Road for purposes of rerouting traffic or providing public safety services.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Public Works is authorized to establish a gate on Keaukaha Road at its intersection with Katnokuna Street, and to provide all signage necessary to inform the public and to allow for the enforcement of this closure.
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the County Clerk shall transmit a copy of this resolution to the Honorable Harry Kim, Mayor; David Yamamoto, Director of Public Works; Paul Ferreira, Chief of Police; and Roxcie Waltjen, Director of Parks and Recreation.
The measure got a positive recommendation from the Hawaiʻi County Council Committee on Public Works and Mass Transit. It next goes to the full council for a vote.