A Message from Kelly King
Springtime is a time of rebirth and regeneration, and there is a sense of renewed public empowerment in the air. More Mauians are paying attention to County government; I’m hearing almost every week from local folks that they are watching council meetings on AKAKU and appreciating the pointed questions. I have much appreciation for those who are participating in the community budget hearings – we need to know your priorities. As we enter the next election cycle, it will be important for residents to get involved in the process, ask candidates tough questions and demand real answers, and then VOTE! Saturday, August 11 is the primary , so add that date to your calendar now.

To address the growing workload in our council office, we have added a new team member. Kate Griffiths is our new Legislative Research Analyst, and, with her great experience, she has hit the ground running since her January start date. (If you recognize her name, you may know Kate as the publisher of The Mauimama, a local magazine.)

As we head into our second budget season, the office of Kelly King is focused and ready for whatever comes our way!

Key Legislative Initiatives this Quarter
  • Introduction of the Community Heart & Soul Project to the Maui Alliance of Community Associations: This project brings the community plan review process to the grassroots level, so that communities can start the process of seeking input for updates to their plans even before their review comes up for official department action.

  • Passage of Resolution 18-50 supporting Peace, Disarmament, and Diplomacy in our Community and around the world: Working with Maui Peace Action, Kelly King proposed a resolution calling for peace talks with North Korea and also referenced support for the students movement demanding stricter gun control laws. The resolution passed unanimously by the County Council and was presented the following day at the March for Our Lives event. After a short speech at the rally, Councilmember King invited our Spring break student intern, Zofia Kayian, on stage to read the resolution.

  • Creation of a Community Advisory Committee to discuss the $1.5 million funding designated for Ka Hale A Ke Ola - the Kihei Homeless Resource Center: Councilmember King organized a group trip to Oahu to visit several homeless/low income housing projects. The group joining Kelly included the director of the county Department of Housing and Human Concerns, Executive Director and staff of Ka Hale A Ke Ola, President of The Kihei Community Association, Co-chair of Faith Action for Community Equity and a Kihei Community member who volunteers his own time and resources to help our unsheltered.
Kelly with Zofia (our Spring break student intern) reading out the Peace Resolution at the rally for the March for Our Lives.
Kelly organized a Maui group trip to Oahu to research homeless/low income housing projects to find solutions for South Maui.
Kihei Updates

  • Affordable Housing Projects:
  • The Kaiwahine affordable housing project was approved by the council’s Land Use Committee on March 9, and passed the first reading by the full council on April 6. 
  • Kalama Kai is still currently under construction.
  • Affordable housing has been approved for inclusion within the Wailea 670 project. It will be the developer’s choice to build the 250 affordable housing units instead at the original site of the now disapproved Piilani Promenade, which would also entail the development of a park.

  • Beach Access: The acquisition of property at the north end of Waipuilani Park was approved by the County Council, using county Open Space funds. The area will soon be cleared for beach access, providing much needed parking space and easier public access to that end of the beach.

  • Bike Paths: A continuation of the bike path at Welakahao is in design.

  • Drainage Basin and Outlet Repair: The February storms made it even more evident that the Hau'oli Street retention pond in Ma'ale'a is in dire need of repair. After being contacted by the Ma'ale'a Village Association, our office was able to facilitate getting the issue before the county council's Infrastructure and Environmental Committee, and a budget for the repair project has been proposed for FY2019. We are also happy to report that the $1.9 million Waiakoa Drainageway Repair Project was completed on schedule at the end of February.

  • North-South Collector Road: This project is under design with two bridges still needing environmental review. Area residents are requested to send in testimony to the Maui Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) to keep it on the list for federal funding.

  • Short-term Rentals: A bill for the ordinance amending section 19.65.030 Maui County Code to establish durational requirements for short-term rental home permit applications was passed. Homeowners are now required to own their residence for 5 years before they can apply for a short-term rental permit. Reports that short-term rentals are driving up the cost of housing in Hawaii drove this effort which will be followed by stricter enforcement actions by the Planning Department. Click here to see recent report.

The temporary berm at the Hauoli Street drainage basin will be fixed in FY2019.
Waipuilani Park will now have easier beach access with the county purchase of land.
The Waiakoa Drainageway Repair Project was completed in February.
Ongoing Initiatives
  • County Manager: Many Maui citizens are interested in developing a more efficient county management structure that would be decoupled from the term of the Mayor, making it less political and more focused on strategic goals. Councilmember King has been working with a group of Maui residents, who are continuing the work of a special committee appointed by a previous council, and have drafted a proposal based on the committee's extensive research on various models of county governance. The new proposal has been revised with the previous concerns of the public in mind and the legal counsel of the Office of Council Services, and is now under review by Corporation Counsel. If approved for inclusion on this year's ballot, Maui voters will be able to decide by majority vote on the first major change in county governance in 50 years!

  • Streamlining the Community Plan Process: As mentioned in the last newsletter, the Planning Committee has been discussing ways to streamline the process used to review community plans, in order that they can be updated within the scope of time required by our County Charter. The Planning Department has been working on a proposal to make the process more efficient, and the changes will likely require a Charter Amendment.

  • Molokai Community Plan: The Molokai Community Plan review is nearing committee approval, with the West Maui Community Plan review next. Councilmember King has taken extra consideration to meet with the Molokai community outside of official council meetings with Talk Stories and community workshops, pioneering the way for future processes and data collection for community plan updates.


* While it is not under county jurisdiction, our office periodically receives requests about the timeline for the Kihei High School. State Department of Education officials confirmed during a meeting on March 8, that the Kihei high school is on track to open for the 2021-22 school year.

In Our Community
Kelly attending the Sierra Club annual meeting and receiving the Onipa'a Award for her lifelong work towards getting Hawaii off fossil fuels.
Kelly and the Council holding the S. Maui District FY2019 Budget meeting at the Kihei Community Center.
Zofia Kayian, our spring break student intern, pictured here with our office manager, Susan Foley.
Keeping Up
In 2018 Councilmember King has continued to attend every public meeting of the Kihei Community Association , as well as every quarterly KCA board meeting, and has ongoing communications with the newly created Ma'alae'a Village Association as well as the Maui Meadows Neighborhood Association.
 
She has used her community insight and leadership role to submit testimony during this 2018 State legislative season in support of Front Street Apartments, funds for our highways and victims’ rights. Kelly also took time out to fly to Oahu to support a bill that requires pesticide notification and disclosure, and includes a school buffer zone pilot program, with North Kihei schools and residents especially in mind.

Kelly dedicates her time to actively helping her community with various projects that will benefit Maui constituents. We often receive messages at our office such as this; "Thank you both SO MUCH for arranging to have Kelly meet with Leah Blankenship and her Care House group last Friday! They learned a lot of extremely helpful information and asked me to pass their most heartfelt gratitude on to you both for making that possible. Thank you Kelly for taking time out of your VERY busy schedule to come meet them and discuss the homelessness issue." -Frances Duberstein, Aloha House, Inc.

Councilmember King’s staff is proud to announce in this newsletter that Kelly has filed for re-election and will be running for a second term, to advance her efforts towards pono prosperity and to continue her tireless work towards a sustainable Maui future for all. We also want to take this opportunity to add that on a personal note, Kelly is excited to announce that she is expecting her second grandchild this May.

We wish you the very best and look forward to serving you.

Mahalo nui loa


To learn more about becoming a member of KCA click here
Besides chairing the Council’s Planning Committee, Councilmember King is currently serving on the following state and national organizations:
  • Hawaii Technology Development Corporation
  • Maui Metropolitan Planning Organization
  • Hawaii Energy Policy Forum
  • Share Your Mana Board of Directors
  • National Association of Counties Environment, Energy and Land Use (EELU) Steering Committee
THE TEAM
Susan Foley, Executive Assistant
With almost 40 years of administrative and marketing experience, Susan loves working with people and seeing them succeed in their dreams.
Terra Malia Foti, Executive Assistant
Born and raised on Oʻahu, with careers in both hospitality and real estate, Terra enjoys her role here as it allows her to find her influential voice benefiting generations to come.

Kate Griffiths,
Legislative Research Analyst
With a degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science, Kate has always had a keen interest in how governance shapes our world. With her career in publishing and community advocacy, she continues her mission to support Maui, a place she has called home for over 20 years.
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