(BIVN) – Drinking alcohol at James Kealoha Beach Park in Keaukaha could soon be a thing of the past, legally speaking.
Today the Hawaii County Council Committee on Public Works and Parks and Recreation advanced a bill that would prohibit intoxicating liquors at the popular shoreline area, also known as 4-Miles.
Bill 48, introduced by Hilo councilwoman Sue Lee Loy, puts Kealoha Beach Park on the list of parks and public places where alcohol prohibited. Liquor was previously permitted at 4-Miles between the hours of 10 a.m. and 10 p.m.
“Its just getting out of hand,” Lee Loy said. “Over the years there was a large level of tolerance, but that tolerance is really beginning to erode at this point.”
“We’ve had to respond to a number of calls for police assistance at Kealoha Park,” said Hawaii County Police Captain Gregory Esteban, “and now… its quite evident that the increase in calls for service is taking a toll on our manpower.”
“Alcohol is one of the main factors that drives the calls for service there”, said Community Police Officer Matthew Lewis. “Traffic accidents, fights, major assaults with weapons: bats, knives, people have been stabbed there.”
“This park has a problem, its really dangerous there,” Lewis added. “I wouldn’t take a child to that beach.”
Councilmembers noted the section of the county code could use further revision. For example, in Puna, Harry K. Brown Park and Kaimu Beach Park are listed as parks where intoxicating liquors are allowed between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. Those parks no longer exist. They were claimed by lava decades ago.
Puna Councilwoman Eileen O’Hara also mentioned she might like to ad the Hawaiian Beaches park to the list of places where drinking alcohol is prohibited.