A long morning of slide shows, power points and videos at Hawaii County Council committees
October 6, 2010 – Hilo, Hawaii
Video by David Corrigan | Voice of Tim Bryan
It was a day full of important slide shows and video presentations in the Hilo council chambers on Tuesday.
The day began when the Hawaii County Housing Agency, comprised of the Hawaii County Council members, gave a positive recommendation for numerous code exemptions for the proposed Kamakana Villages at Keahuolū.
The $734 million mixed use project is planned for the slopes of Hualalai in Kona, and will create a 2,330 home community on 272 acres. The project includes plans for new schools, numerous commercial complexes, and the promise of jobs.
While the committee supported the project, some members hesitated to approve of the code requirement exemptions without a better understanding of the details. Dominic Yagong said the list included exemptions from having to pay any permit fees or inspections conducted by the county. An attempt to postpone a vote on the matter was defeated, and the exemptions were given a favorable recommendation heading to the full council.
Later in the day, the committees were given two presentations on unrelated projects geared towards island youth.
The Public Safety and Parks and Recreation Committee watched a special DVD supporting an effort to build a skate park at the Honokaa Sports Complex.
The short film drew a round of applause from the committee. However, some council members said they were a little squeamish about the possible dangers of skate boarding.
While the skate park project seemed to have unanimous support from those in attendance, another presentation made at Human Services and Economic Development committee drew oppositional testimony.
The outrage was directed towards the Hawaii National Guard’s Youth Challenge Academy, set to begin operating at the site of the former Kulani Correctional Facility in January 2011. The state suddenly closed Kulani in 2009 to cut costs, and simultaneously cleared the way for the Youth Challenge Academy to move in. Director Rick Campbell explained the philosophy behind the program at Tuesday’s meeting.
Despite the testimony in opposition, committee members said they supported the Youth Challenge Academy, although some councilmembers had their doubts about the project at first.
There was no vote of any kind on either the skate park or the Youth Challenge Academy. The presentations were purely informational.