Maui News

Proposal Seeks Preservation of North Shore Parcel, Peʻahi “Jaws”

May 2, 2015, 6:07 AM HST
* Updated May 2, 6:23 AM
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Warning Level Peʻahi Swell of January 2011 / File Photo by Wendy Osher

By Maui Now Staff

A proposal to appropriate $3.2 million in funds for the acquisition of 312 acres on Maui’s North Shore is being considered for inclusion in the Maui County Fiscal Year 2016 budget.

The item was introduced by Council Vice Chair Don Guzman who noted that the Kuiaha parcel, east of Pāʻia is currently owned by A&B Properties. He said it includes the iconic big-wave surf spot of Peʻahi, often referred to as “Jaws,” and called the spot “a landmark with enormous cultural history and significance.”

An estimated 30 people signed up to testify in support of the measure on Friday, with more than 1,000 signing an online petition.  Some of the testifiers reportedly said North Shore beach access is declining because of homes built along the coastline.

“The proposal received overwhelming community support,” said Guzman in a press release announcement. “I want to thank those who made an effort to testify in our committee meeting – in person or via email – urging the council to support this funding.”

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The item is being considered by the council’s Budget and Finance Committee, which is deliberating on the budget document for the county.

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If the item is included in the budget, any negotiation on acquisition would be carried out by the administration and the property owner.

“I urge my colleagues and members of the county administration to recognize the importance of preserving this property, for the sake of our keiki,” Guzman said. “I will do what I can to save this land from development.”

The deadline for the council to pass the budget is June 10, 2015.

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