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Residents should attend important meetings in West Maui

By Staff | Apr 7, 2016

Aloha West Maui community members and Hau’oli Kupulau (Happy Spring) to you all. I hope this season finds you well and enjoying all that West Maui has to offer.

This time of year is a period of new beginnings, and there are a few important planning processes commencing at the moment. I urge you to get involved at their inceptions, so that your valuable input can help shape the community you desire.

Fiscal Year 2017 Budget: The Fiscal Year 2017 Budget session officially began on Wednesday, March 30. The West Maui Budget District Meeting is Wednesday, April 6, at 6 p.m. Please attend and let us know which issues are important to you. I look forward to hearing your comments and, as always, I will do my best to represent our district’s needs to the budget committee.

I have heard from the community that you would like to see the continued funding of the Go Green recycling events, hosted by Malama Maui Nui and the Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunset. These events have been overwhelmingly successful. According to the Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunset, in the first eight months of the program, they’ve recycled over 400 household appliances, including 140 refrigerators and 87 air conditioners; 51,000 pounds of scrap metal; 17,000 pounds of general recyclables; 3,000 batteries and 1,000 pieces of e-waste, like old televisions and computers. This is great news, and I would like to thank all of the volunteers and the West Maui community for helping to divert these recyclables from the landfill.

I am also aware that the community is concerned about pesticide use on our county properties. My office has been working diligently to find a way to make Maui County properties pesticide-free. It is my intention to propose the allocation of necessary funds, which would allow the departments to continue the testing and eventual conversion to an integrated pest management system. Last week, my Infrastructure and Environmental Management Committee met with the Department of Parks and Recreation and the Department of Public Works to begin the discussion of what it will take to achieve this goal. Budget session will last for the next five weeks, and we welcome community testimony in the chambers or via e-mail to budget.committee@mauicounty.us or directly to my office at elle.cochran@mauicounty.us.

Maui Island Water Use & Development Plan Update: The Department of Water Supply is conducting community workshops for the Maui Island Water Use & Development Plan update (WUDP). Public input is requested on water issues and solutions. The WUDP is required by law to ensure the needs of all water users on Maui are met over the next 20 years, while maintaining the sustainability of our water resources. The current WUDP was drafted several years ago and is being rebuilt to include all current water users and water systems, as well as focusing more attention on our surface, ground, and alternative water resources.

The Department of Water Supply will be hosting the West Maui Community Workshop on Saturday, May 7, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Lahaina Civic Center. For a list of other community meetings, or for more information, please contact Pam Townsend of the Water Resources & Planning Staff by phone at 463-3110 or by e-mail at pam.townsend@ co.maui.hi.us.

West Maui Community Plan Update: The West Maui Community Plan update process has begun. The Planning Department has initiated their stakeholder interviews and will soon be asking for input from any and all who have interest in participating. This is a great opportunity for everyone to weigh in and help shape the West Maui community of tomorrow.

The Maui County Planning Department will be holding community workshops beginning in May. I am looking forward to working with the department on this and will keep you all informed as we get closer to the community stakeholder workshop dates.

I look forward to hearing from you during these important planning processes. As always, please feel free to contact my office with any questions or concerns at 270-5504 or by e-mail at: elle.cochran@mauicounty.us.