Maui News

HTA Publishes Community-Based Tourism Management Plan for Kaua‘i; Maui Plan Being Finalized

February 5, 2021, 10:01 AM HST
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PC: Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority.

The Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority has published the 2021-2023 Kauaʻi Destination Management Action Plan. The HTA says the plan is part of its strategic vision and continuing efforts to manage tourism in a responsible and regenerative manner.

HTA is also working to finalize a Maui Nui (Maui, Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi) Destination Management Action Plan; and is in the process of developing a Hawaiʻi Island DMAP with plans to start the process on Oʻahu in March.

Developed by the residents of Kauaʻi, and in partnership with the County of Kauaʻi and Kauaʻi Visitors Bureau, the DMAP serves as a guide to rebuild, redefine and reset the direction of tourism on the Garden Island. It identifies areas of need as well as solutions for enhancing the residents’ quality of life and improving the visitor experience.

The community-based plan focuses on key actions that the community, visitor industry and other sectors deem necessary over a three-year period. The actions are organized by the four interacting pillars of HTA’s Strategic Plan – Natural Resources, Hawaiian Culture, Community and Brand Marketing:

Respect for Natural and Cultural Resources

  • Focus policy efforts on appropriate behavior that will instill value in both visitors and residents for natural and cultural resources (malama aina).
  • Collaborate with the State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources to develop and implement policies to increase monitoring and enforcement efforts.
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Hawaiian Culture

  • Invest in Hawaiian cultural programs and identify funding sources that enhance the visitor experience and connect both tourism and communities.
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Community

  • Focus policies that address overtourism by managing people while on Kauaʻi.
  • Encourage low-impact green rides to improve the visitor experience, reduce island traffic, increase small business opportunities, and meet climate action goals.
  • Increase communication, engagement and outreach efforts with the community, visitor industry, and other sectors.

Brand Marketing

  • Develop educational materials for visitors and new residents to have respect for local cultural values.
  • Promote “Shop Local” to visitors and residents.
  • Support diversification of other sectors.

These actions were developed by the Kauaʻi steering committee, comprised of Kauaʻi residents representing the communities they live in, as well as the visitor industry, different business sectors, and nonprofit organizations. Representatives from the County of Kauaʻi, HTA, and the Kauaʻi Visitors Bureau also provided input throughout the process.

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“I wish to thank the many community members and organizations that have provided input on the revival of our visitor industry and continued forward progress. I applaud the collaborative effort and dedication to create a visitor industry that cares for and supports our island home, our residents and our visitors,” said Kauaʻi County Mayor Derek Kawakami.

“This DMAP is a reflection of the love and concerns that Kauaʻi’s people have for their home and island. As such, every idea and actionable item is intended to malama Kauaʻi – meaning to care for, to protect and to nurture. As a Hawaiian cultural value, ‘malama’ is a verb and it requires all of us to be mindful in taking responsible action to ensure that the future of Kauaʻi is sustainable, as we collectively seek to envision and design a new model of tourism,” said John De Fries, HTA’s president and CEO.

The Kauaʻi DMAP process started in July 2020 and continued with a series of virtual steering committee meetings, as well as two virtual community meetings in October.

The foundation of the Kauaʻi DMAP is based on HTA’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan and the 2018-2021 Kauaʻi Tourism Strategic Plan.

“I’m proud of Kauaʻi County’s residents. They have worked hard through the DMAP and other plans to evaluate the frustrations voiced by our community, and amidst many differences, they keep coming back to the table to try to make things better for all involved. Mahalo to the Hawaii Tourism Authority for allowing our community to provide feedback and recommendations from the front line,” said Nalani Brun, director of Kauaʻi County’s Office of Economic Development.

The members of the Kauaʻi steering committee are:

  • Fred Atkins (HTA Board Member – Kauaʻi Kilohana Partners)
  • Jim Braman (General Manager – The Cliffs at Princeville)
  • Stacie Chiba-Miguel (Senior Property Manager – Alexander and Baldwin)
  • Warren Doi (Business Innovation Coordinator – North Shore community member)
  • Chris Gampon (General Manager – Outrigger Kiahuna Plantation Resort & South Kauaʻi community member)
  • Joel Guy (Executive Director – The Hanalei Initiative/North Shore Shuttle)
  • Rick Haviland (Owner – Outfitters Kauaʻi)
  • Kirsten Hermstad (Executive Director – Hui Makaainana o Makana)
  • Maka Herrod (Executive Director – Malie Foundation)
  • Francyne “Frannie” Johnson (East Kauaʻi community member)
  • Leanora Kaiaokamalie (Long Range Planner – County of Kauaʻi Planning Department)
  • Sue Kanoho (Executive Director – Kauaʻi Visitors Bureau)
  • John Kaohelaulii (President – Kauaʻi Native Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce)
  • Sabra Kauka (Kumu)
  • Will Lydgate (Owner – Lydgate Farms)
  • Thomas Nizo (Festival Director – Historic Waimea Theater and Cultural Arts Center)
  • Mark Perriello (President and CEO – Kauaʻi Chamber of Commerce)
  • Ben Sullivan (Sustainability Manager – County of Kauaʻi Office of Economic Development)
  • Candace Tabuchi (Assistant Professor – Kauaʻi Community College, Hospitality and Tourism)
  • Buffy Trujillo (Regional Director – Kamehameha Schools)
  • Denise Wardlow (General Manager – Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas)
  • Marie Williams (Long Range Planner – County of Kauaʻi Planning Department)

To follow the progress of the other island DMAPs visit the HTA online.

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