(BIVN) – A day-long Community Speak-Out Event was held on Saturday at the Keaʻau High School cafeteria.
Attendees could get the latest information on the Kīlauea eruption recovery effort, and also provide input on priority recovery objectives for Puna.
716 structures were destroyed during the summer 2018 eruption of Kīlauea Volcano on the lower East Rift Zone, including about 200 primary residences, the County says. About 3,000 residents were displaced.
Bob Agres, the manager for Hawaiʻi County’s Disaster Recovery Community Engagement & Collaboration, said today’s event was “one of many efforts to lift up the voice of the community to guide the recovery process.”
“We’ve talked to over a thousand residents, including over 300 students since December,” Agres said. “We’re doing surveys and then this Speak-Out is a lively kind of way to share information about what’s been heard so far, all the technical information that’s been developed so far. Share that with the communities so that they can then tell us what they think, what their manaʻo is about the real challenges and opportunities that they see for recovery.”
“This information will inform the Puna Community Development Plan Action Committee’s kuleana to recommend what are our priority objectives,” Agres said. “What will follow is phase three of the process, which is: what are the specific strategies, actions, and preferred scenarios for recovery and long-term resilience.”
The next Puna CDP meeting will be on August 6, 2019 at the Pāhoa Neighborhood Facility from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
“We’re gonna be cranking, burning the midnight oil, to pull all this information together” in time for the meeting, Agres said.
“All this information that we’ve gotten around goals and objectives could be tweaked,” Agres added, “depending on what the community says about the kinds of specific strategies that emerge from the input from these conversations.”