(BIVN) – Heavy rains were not a deterrence for the roughly fifty people who came to speak out on a Pohakuloa Training Area document in Hilo last night.
The Aupuni Center Conference Room was filled with peace activists and environmentalists, as well as a huge group of students from the Hawai‘i Academy Of Arts and Science, many of whom recently traveled to Kaho’olawe, an island decimated by military training in the past.
Recently, the U.S. Army Garrison Pohakuloa published a draft Integrated Cultural Resources Management Plan. The Army says the plan will provide PTA managers with a guide to ensure compliance with applicable cultural resource management laws and regulations. That includes identification and evaluation of cultural resources, consultation with concerned parties, consideration of impacts, and decisions about how to treat the resources.
Since the U.S. Army environmental assessment anticipates a finding of no significant impact, a public hearing is not required. Wishing to voice their opposition to the military exercises, the people organized their own hearings, instead. In adition to Thursday night’s hearing in Hilo, a second hearing is also planned for Kona, tonight at the West Hawaii Civic Center. Organizers hope to insert the testimonies into the public comment record for the EA. The deadline for comments is Dec. 7, 2017.
In the video above, long time PTA opponent Jim Albertini of the Malu ʻAina Center for Non-Violent Education and Action delivers his testimony.
Big Island Video News will be posting the entire hearing later today.