Maui Discussion

Ask the Mayor: Red Light Malfunctions; Ho’okipa Parking

July 14, 2013, 12:00 AM HST
* Updated July 15, 11:23 AM
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Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.

Dear Mayor,

File photo by Wendy Osher.

File photo by Wendy Osher.

Q: During the past two weeks, the traffic light at Haleakala Hwy and N. Firebreak Road has malfunctioned. I have had eight red lights while traveling on Haleakala Highway when there has been no traffic on N. Firebreak Road to trigger the change in light. Who is responsible for this and when will it be fixed?

A:  The reality is that because some roadways are maintained by the state and some by the county, it’s often hard to know who to call. For traffic signals and other problems along state roads or highways, such as Haleakala, Mokulele, Piilani and Honoapiilani, you should call the state DOT Highways division at 873-3535. To report problems on county roads, or if you’re not sure whether the road is county or state, call the county’s traffic signal office at 270-7910 between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. during the week. After-hours and on weekends, please call the Maui Police Department’s non-emergency line at 244-6400 to report a malfunctioning traffic signal.

Dear Mayor,

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Q:  I wanted to share a few concerns that I have. Recently there have been a lot of permanent “No Parking” signs posted at Ho‘okipa, which is one of Maui’s most heavily-used parks. Watch when the surf gets good this coming winter! There will be people having to park out by the highway and that could create greater dangers for motorists and pedestrians, as well as a liability for the County and State. I also requested through the Police department that more speed bumps and “Go slow” signs be posted along the one-way drive through Ho‘okipa. Thank you for your time. I’m a 43-year resident and feel these issues are very important and that it would be in everyone’s best interest if these needs were addressed quickly.

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A:  Thank you for sharing your concerns. According to the Department of Parks and Recreation, the permanent “No Parking” signs were installed at Ho‘okipa because emergency vehicle access was regularly being blocked by parked vehicles; these signs were replacements of ones that over the years had been broken, removed and vandalized but never replaced. The signs are designed to restrict parking near the Fire Lane, to ensure that emergency vehicles can access the park. Last week, staff were able to reconfigure a few of the “No Parking” signs to allow for additional parallel parking spaces while maintaining the Fire Lane access. A new parking area at Ho‘okipa is also being discussed; however, none of the potential parking sites are currently owned by the county. It will take time for the planning, funding and construction phases, as well as time for the public and County Council to weigh in on their vision for this important north shore destination. On another note, Parks is in the process of securing a contractor for the re-painting of parking lines; funds were not available in the FY13 budget, but Parks officials say the repainting should be completed this fiscal year. Parks, police and other departments including Public Works have been working together to address all of these important safety issues at Ho‘okipa, including a recent request for speed bumps.

Dear Mayor,

Q:  Are there are any plans to bring back Sundays at the rubbish dump? Especially for homeowners who work six days a week, Monday through Saturday, and can only work on their yards on Sundays.

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A:  The Central Maui Landfill is open Monday through Saturday, from 6 a.m. – 3 p.m. Several years ago, Sunday landfill service was discontinued and the County Council permanently deleted positions that had previously been used to staff the Sunday hours. We currently do not have the funding or manpower to open on Sundays again, as it is significantly more expensive to keep the landfill open on the weekends than it is during the week, when commercial tipping fees help offset operations costs. If you feel this is an important funding priority, please let me know by sending me an email at [email protected].

Want to Ask the Mayor?

Submit your questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa via email: [email protected], phone: 270-7855 or mail: 200 S. High Street, 9th Floor, Wailuku, Hawaii 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the “Ask the Mayor” column.

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