Kaka’ako Land Deal with OHA Backed by Senate Panels

February 17, 2012, 7:29 AM HST · Updated February 17, 9:57 AM
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OHA trustees, file photo by Wendy Osher.

By Wendy Osher

Two state senate committees have since voted in favor of a proposed land deal between the state and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

The proposal calls for the transfer of $200 million worth of land in Kaka‘ako Makai to OHA to help resolve longstanding claims for past-due revenues.

Trustees say they would use the revenues generated by the land to enhance programs for Native Hawaiians such as scholarships, health and education initiatives.

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SB 2783 was introduced by Senate President Shan Tsutsui of Maui, by request of the Governor as part of the Administration’s package. It seeks to resolve all disputes and controversies relating to OHA’s portion of income and proceeds from the public trust lands for the period from November 7, 1978 through June 30, 2012.

The item now goes to the Senate Judiciary committee for further consideration.

In the House, companion bill HB 2521 was recommended for deferral on February 8, by the House committees on Water Land and Ocean Resources, and Hawaiian Affairs.

Community outreach meetings on the plan were held in Hana and Kahului on Maui earlier this week.

Today, OHA trustees travel to Molokai for a 5:30 p.m. meeting at the Kulana Oiwi Complex; on Saturday, they head to Lanai for a morning meeting from 9:30 to 11 a.m. at Lanai High & Intermediate School; and a final meeting will be held on Saturday night, Feb. 18 in Wai’anae on Oʻahu from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Wai‘anae Coast Comprehensive Health Center.

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