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Aloha and Mahalo for your continued support!

Welcome to my fresh vision for responsive and responsible government! My office is dedicated to listening to and taking action upon the concerns of our district’s residents. We are hopeful that through our website, we will be better able to communicate our progress and the action that I am taking as the Councilmember of the district. Please feel free to contact me at any time with concerns.

National News

September 19, 2014

Biofuels on the VergeI am pleased to know that my Biodeisel Resolution 14-169 (2014) has made national news. We must continue moving forward with efforts towards becoming more sustainable.

“In Hawaii, Honolulu City adopted a resolution last week to develop a biodiesel initiate for the city’s existing mass transit diesel vehicles. The adoption of resolution 14-169 will allow the Department of Transportation and the City to look to further the use of biodiesel in TheBus and TheHandi-Van fleets comprised of more than 650 vehicles.” – Biofuels Digest

Read the full article here:

Moving Forward with Compassionate Disruption

September 17, 2014
Homeless bills press releaseYesterday, Mayor Kirk Caldwell sign Bills 42, 43, and 46 into law:

42 – Sit-lie ban in the Waikiki Special District
43 – Public urination/defecation ban in the Waikiki Special District
46 – Public urination/defecation ban island-wide

For Waikiki Special District businesses, hotels, countless residents, and visitors of Oahu, this moment has been long overdue. As an elected official for the Waikiki area, which by far as the largest homeless population across the island, I am happy to be moving forward with the administration’s plans for Housing First. This is the first step in giving people the encouragement they need to get connected with the resources that are available to them, and move into permanent shelter. Sleeping on sidewalks, and urinating and defecting in public places other than restroom facilities is no way to live.

Additionally, we are happy to announce that the first 24-hour public restroom in Waikiki is now open next to Waikiki’s police sub-station at Kuhio Beach. A day after it’s implementation, Mayor Caldwell reported, “76 people used the restroom between the hours of 10pm and 10am. There was no vandalism and a security camera has been installed right outside of the door to ensure security. There were a mix of people who used it– tourists, homeless, etc.”
Mahalo to Mayor Caldwell, Councilmember Ikaika Anderson, the Waikiki Business Improvement District Association, Waikiki Improvement Association, and the countless other businesses, agencies, and constituents who rallied together to see this through. As Mayor Caldwell mentioned in his press release, none of these polices can singly be the magic answer to the vast homeless crisis we are experiencing that certainly hasn’t happened overnight. But we are hopeful that this is first step in a process that we believe can start to immediately address the crisis.

All Things Recycled

September 16, 2014

The 11th Annual Community Clean-Up (recycling drive) benefiting Kaimuki HS, Moiliili Community Center and Kapahulu Community Center is coming up on Saturday, October 18, from 9:00am-1:00pm, at Kaimuki High School – 2705 Kaimuki Avenue.

Support your community and bring your recyclables down, or call for curbside pick-up – how cool is that?!

Acceptable Items:Kaimuki Clean Up

  • Scrap metal, bicycles, appliances
  • 3 propane tanks, 3 fire extinguishers, per car
  • Computers, printers, scanners, no limit
  • 1 TV per car
  • HI-5 beverage containers
  • Used household cooking oil
  • Cell phones, printer cartridges, PDA’s, etc.
  • Batteries, all kinds
  • Canned goods for Hawaii Food Bank
  • Usable clothing and household items
  • Used eye glasses and hearing aids
  • Incandescent light bulbs exchange for CFLs
  • Prom dresses, accessories
  • Women business suits, accessories
  • Pet food, towels, blankets
  • White socks for Afganistan
  • Free towing of unwanted cars, call 291-6151

Sorry, we cannot accept:

  • Tires, paint, microwave ovens, motor oil, hazardous fluids, cardboard, paper, plastics, wood, and bulky items.

For curbside pick-up contact: Steve Uyeno @ 768-5057

For questions contact: Rene Mancho @ 291-6151 / renemansho@hawaii.rr.com

Mother Waldron Park

September 15, 2014
Mother Waldorn“Never help anybody who isn’t willing to help someone else. When I help anyone, I make him promise to pay for it. But they don’t pay me directly; they pay me by promising to do just as much or more for the next person in need.” – Mother Waldron

Margaret Waldron, known as “Mother Waldron,” was a dedicated school teacher who taught at Pohukaina School In the late-1800s to early-1900s, for 18 years until her retirement in 1934. Mother Waldron died on May 8, 1936.

The following year, when a new 1.76-acre playground was constructed across Coral Street from Pohukaina School, the Honolulu Board of Supervisors authorized the park’s designation as “Mother Waldron Playground.” The park was, at the time, the most modern facility in Hawai’i.

The recent restoration of Mother Waldron Playground is the result of a public-private partnership with my friend and local developer, Stanford Carr. Utilizing remaining funds from the neighboring Halekauwila Place development, Stanford Carr has provided a new basketball court and playground, as well as new landscaping and trees. City employees collaborated with Stanford Carr staff to restore the comfort station and pavilion.

Today, we celebrate re-opening of Mother Waldron Park to the public.

Councilmember Chang’s Biodiesel Initiative Adopted

September 12, 2014

TheBus

The Honolulu City Council adopted Resolution 14-169 to develop a City Biodiesel Initiative. The Resolution requests the Department of Transportation Services in partnership with the Oahu Transit Services to generate a plan to integrate biodiesel fuel for the City’s TheBus and TheHandi-Van fleets. Through the City Biodiesel Initiative, the Resolutionrequests a minimum use of the B5 biodiesel (5 percent biodiesel/ 95 percent petroleum diesel blend) with a goal of increasing to B20 biodiesel by 2018.

Biodiesel is an alternative fuel source that meet standards set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and is derived from renewable organic materials such as cooking oils, plants, and algae. Collection of organic materials from local sources and production of biodiesel in Hawaii can provide financial benefits for the local economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“I believe this initiative is the next step forward that the City can take in reducing our environmental impact and dependence on imported fossil fuels,” said Councilmember Chang. “In addition, this helps our local economy since biodiesel fuel can be produced locally, thereby encouraging job growth and increasing revenue in the renewable energy sector.”

The usage of biodiesel for City-run transportation is not new, since 2004 the City’s garbage trucks have been operating with B20 biodiesel fuel. With successful results, the City expanded the use of biodiesel fuel with a pilot program from 2012 to 2013 where a portion of TheBus fleet underwent B20 biodiesel testing. Other examples across the United States such as in Missouri, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington have shown success in transitioning to a mandate of selling a biodiesel blend statewide.

Currently, Hawaii depends on importing fossil fuels to sustain more than 90 percent of its energy requirements. As part of the City and County of Honolulu’s support for the State of Hawaii and the U.S. Department of Energy for the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, the City Biodiesel Initiative will help to decrease dependency on petroleum while increasing the use of local renewable energy.

To provide progress updates and feedback, the resolution requests for the Department of Transportation Services to report on the status of the initiative including estimates for energy savings, timeline of implementation, and a cost benefit analysis by December 2014. TheHandivan

Hawaii Kai Strong

September 9, 2014

16308_1472540909663035_8558597942715112078_nHawaii Kai Strong, a disaster readiness group, is planning two initial meetings for the Hawaii Kai community to explain the purpose and focus of the organization and to get started helping residents prepare for a disaster.

The volunteer group is one of several being organized throughout Oahu as local resources to complement the state and City and County emergency management agencies.

The first Hawaii Kai meeting is scheduled Tuesday, Sept. 9 in Kaiser High School cafeteria; the second session is Wednesday, Oct.15, also in the Kaiser cafeteria. Both start at 7:00 p.m. Hawaii Kai Strong is making a significant effort to notify the residents of Hawaii Kai, especially residents of the various condos and home owners’ associations so that they can attend. “10,000 Hawaii Kai residents live in condos or where there’s a HOA,” says Matt Glei, facilitator of the group. “That’s about 30% percent of the total population of Hawaii Kai.”

“We want to make sure everyone is better prepared for a natural disaster, be it hurricane, tsunami, flood or earthquake.”

“Our mission is to help Hawaii Kai become a more‐resilient community. In case of a disaster we may be cut off from town and even other communities, so we have to be prepared to weather the storm until help can arrive.“

Other members of Hawaii Kai Strong are Rene Garvin, liaison to the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board; Pastor Andy Kikuta of Hawaii Kai Community Church, Bill Vogt, and John Miller. All are long time residents of Hawaii Kai.

These first meetings will be informational while later public meetings will focus on specific disasters and disaster readiness.

Hawaii Kai Strong is working closely with the City & County of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management & the Hawaii State Civil Defense Emergency Management Agency, using the Hawaii Hazards Awareness & Resilience Program (HHARP).

For more information, call Matt Glei at (808) 222‐1715 or visit the group’s Facebook page: Hawaii Kai Strong.

For full details, view this message on the web

Improving Our Roads

September 8, 2014

***TRAFFIC ADVISORY***

South Beretania Street rehabilitation project to begin next week

Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced that the city’s Beretania Street resurfacing project will begin Monday and advised drivers to take alternate streets. 

This Beretania project is “full-depth reconstruction,” meaning crews need to dig deeper than most resurfacing projects to ensure the repairs last.  The project will take longer to complete, but then it will last longer. 

The road construction is scheduled to begin this Monday, September 8 and be completed before November 2015. 

The project includes pavement milling, removal of underlying concrete pavement, reconstruction of curbs, gutters and driveways, construction of new curb ramps, and the installation of concrete bus pads.

The Department of Design and Construction has contracted Road and Highway Builders, LLC to perform reconstruction and resurfacing of the asphalt roadway of South Beretania Street, from University Avenue to Alapa‘i Street. 

Work will begin on the University end of Beretania and work towards town. Some lane closures will be in effect 24/7, including the concrete bus pads that need to harden. 

The contractor has a noise variance permit from the city and the State Department of Health to work in certain areas between the hours of 7 a.m. and midnight in order to complete the project faster.  Most work will happen Monday to Friday, but some work at major intersections may occur over the weekend. 

For any issues or concerns during Beretania Street construction, please call the project hotline, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 945-1000.

On-street parking will be prohibited at times during the project.  Please observe and obey all traffic control devices and special duty officers. 

Motorists are advised to take alternate routes, such as Kapiolani Boulevard, Ala Moana Boulevard, Young Street, and other surface streets and allow for extra time. 

When resurfacing is completed, a new bike lane will be added onto Beretania Street.

Making Honolulu a bicycle-friendly city through the installation of bike infrastructure and the establishment of a bikeshare program, which is scheduled to be operational late next year, has been a major priority for Mayor Caldwell.  Bike lanes or sharrows were added on both sides of Waialae Avenue when it was resurfaced this year and construction of Oahu’s first off-grade bike path on King Street begins next week. The newly reopened Ala Wai Walking Path also features a bike path.

The $9.44 million Beretania Street resurfacing project is part of Mayor Caldwell’s ambitious road repaving agenda.  Beretania is among the 1,500 lane miles of city owned roadway that were found to be substandard and cause wear and tear on vehicles in a survey conducted in 2012. 

In 2013, Mayor Caldwell’s first year in office, the city paved a record 398 lane miles of roads across O‘ahu. So far this year, the city has paved 247 lane miles. The Beretania Street project will add an additional 13 lane miles. 

The other half of Beretania Street, from Alapa‘i Street to King Street, was paved from 2006-2007. 

To view the full schedule of upcoming and completed city road paving projects, please visit honolulu.gov and click “Road Repaving Update