Windy Conditions Prompt Park Closure

28 02 2018

The strong winds today have resulted in fallen trees around the island and the closure of a Department of Parks and Recreation facility.

A large portion of an opiuma tree fell at Kaiaka Bay Beach Park near the soccer field. The fallen segment is not obstructing any other passageways or park facilities. At Kapiolani Park, two kiawe trees fell near the Diamond Head tennis courts, one of which fell onto a light pole. In all three situations no injuries to people were reported.

Additionally, Wahiawa Botanical Garden is closed today, 2/28/18, due to strong winds creating hazardous conditions.

Currently there are no reports of damage associated with the strong winds, but on-site botanical garden staff reported increasing wind speeds throughout the morning.

Staff will reassess the conditions tomorrow morning to determine whether it is safe to reopen.

The 27-acre Wahiawā Botanical Garden is normally open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Division of Urban Forestry crews are also addressing two fallen Ironwood trees at Kailua Beach Park.

Second Restroom Added to Wahiawa Transit Center

23 02 2018

The Department of Transportation Services (DTS) recently completed the construction of a second restroom and refurbishment of the existing restroom at the Wahiawa Transit Center, which welcomes 1,697 riders on TheBus every weekday. Contractor Brian’s Contracting Inc. completed the 18-month project at a cost of $166,988.99.

The Transit Center was initially built with a single restroom that was reserved for use by operators of TheBus. However, in response to community concerns a second restroom was added, allowing the facilities to be opened for use by the general public.

Although initially budgeted at $500,000, the project’s total price was significantly less. Savings totaling $333,000 were realized after engineers with the Department of Transportation Services came up with the idea of renovating an existing storage room to create the new restroom, which proved to be both feasible and functional.

The $5.5 million Wahiawa Transit Center debuted in October of 2011 and is located between Center Street and California Avenue next to the State Civic Center. The ground level includes bus driveways and a staging area for passengers. The second level of the structure consists of 58 parking stalls, 33 of which are available for users of TheBus park and ride.

The Department of Transportation Services would like to thank the users of the Wahiawa Transit Center for their patience during the restroom project and hope they enjoy the new and refurbished facilities.

Real Property Tax Payments Due Tuesday, February 20

15 02 2018

The City and County of Honolulu is reminding taxpayers that the real property tax second installment payment for tax year 2017-2018 is due by Tuesday, February 20, 2018.

Payments can be made by mail or in person at any Satellite City Hall or Honolulu Hale. Taxpayers can also utilize the curbside drop box located outside of Honolulu Hale or pay electronically with an authorized debit or credit card.

Real Property Taxes must be paid whether you receive a tax bill or not.  A penalty of up to 10 percent plus interest of 12 percent a year will be assessed for late payments. The minimum tax for the fiscal year is $300.

Payment can be made by:

Mail:  Payment must have a post office cancellation mark on or before the “DUE DATE.”

In person:  Pay with cash or check only by visiting the Real Property Tax Collection Section, Division of Treasury, located on the first floor of Honolulu Hale, or with your original tax bill at any Satellite City Hall location.

Curbside Drop Box:  Located outside Honolulu Hale (black/gray box).

Electronic Payment:  Pay with MasterCard/Visa or Discover credit or MasterCard/Visa debit card online at, or by telephone at (877) 309-9117.

Payments made by debit or credit cards are only accepted online or by telephone during the installment period. A convenience fee is applied by the service provider, Official Payments Corp., and will be included at payment confirmation.

Kupuna Caregiver Financial Support

14 02 2018

The Department of Community Services’ Elderly Affairs Division announced that it has launched the Kupuna Caregiver Pilot Program to help support working persons who also provide care to elders.

To be eligible caregivers must be employed at least 30 hours a week and provide care to a frail elder 60 years of age or older. The program benefit is limited to $70 worth of services per day and continues through June 30, 2018. The amount allocated to the City and County of Honolulu by the State of Hawaii is estimated to benefit 38 caregivers and priority will be given to applicants with the greatest caregiver burden and the most economic and social need.

With this pilot funding the city has chosen to provide Adult Day Care services. This service provides relief to a working caregiver by providing all-day supervision to a senior in a safe and comfortable environment. The $70 per day benefit would cover all or most of the cost of this service, which includes meals, on-site activities for physical strengthening, mental stimulation, socialization and recreation. For the caregiver it provides peace of mind, the freedom to continue working and a way to reduce anxiety and stress. Some of the city’s contracted day care providers are also able to assist with personal care, toileting, and/or incontinence.

Assisting 38 caregivers with this pilot program demonstrates the practical impact of government support to the many thousands of family caregivers on Oahu who are currently working. The data collected during this pilot program will provide valuable information on Oahu’s working caregiver population, including the level of need, effects on the workforce, and how support for caregivers should be targeted in the future. In response to the state of Hawaii’s announcement of the program’s launch, the Elderly Affairs Division has already received over one thousand calls from interested caregivers. Many have already been assessed for eligibility and the first participant is expected to start the program this week.

Legislation to continue and expand the program is currently being considered by the Hawaii State Legislature, and working caregivers are encouraged to contact their senators and representatives for more information or to voice their continued support.

Additional information on the program is available on the Elderly Affairs Division’s website at or by calling the Senior Helpline at 768-7700.

February Army Training Advisory

9 02 2018

Local military units are scheduled to conduct various activities here in February that may be heard by surrounding communities. For the community’s awareness, the training is as follows:

  • February 5-9  Army helicopter aerial gunnery, Schofield Barracks. Training will occur during daytime and nighttime hours.
  • February 5-23  Army Lightning Academy training with blank ammunition and explosive simulators, East Range. Training will occur during daytime and nighttime hours.
  • February 10-11  Army artillery training, Schofield Barracks.
  • February 17-18  Army helicopter aerial gunnery, Schofield Barracks. Training will occur during daytime and nighttime hours.
  • February 20  Army Lightning Academy helicopter operations, East Range. Training will occur during daytime hours.

Training dates are subject to change based on environmental and other factors. Weather, such as overcast conditions, can increase noise and vibrations. Should individuals hear noise, there is no immediate danger.

The military appreciates the understanding and continued support of the local community. While sometimes loud, this training is critical to ensure military units and service members are ready to accomplish their mission and return home safely.

To report concerns related to noise or training, community members can call the U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii (USAG-HI) Noise Concern Line at (808) 656-3487 or email The USAG-HI Public Affairs Office responds to all reported concerns during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.


Kipapa Stream Bridge Closed October 6-9 For Rehabilitation Work

5 10 2017

The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) Highways Division, will be closing Kamehameha Highway continuously in both directions between Ka Uka Boulevard and Lanikuhana Avenue from 9 p.m. on Friday night, Oct. 6, 2017, through 5 a.m. on Monday morning, Oct. 9, 2017, for bridge deck work.

HDOT advises motorists to use the H-2 Freeway as an alternate route and encourages the public to utilize traffic apps to stay informed of congested areas. A full closure is needed to accommodate the heavy equipment to install precast panels and transitions on the mauka ends of the Kipapa Stream (Roosevelt) Bridge.

Electronic message boards have been posted to alert motorists of the closures. Special Duty Police Officers will be on-site to assist with traffic control. Emergency vehicles, first responders, and TheBus have been notified of the roadwork and will be allowed through the closure. Roadwork is weather permitting.


Tax Advisory Commission Calls for Public Input as It Reviews City Real Property Tax System

1 09 2017

The 2017 Oahu Real Property Tax Advisory Commission is calling for the public’s input as it conducts a comprehensive review of the City’s real property tax system. The Commission must submit written recommendations to the City Council by December 1, 2017.

“The public’s input is critical to this process if we are to fulfill our mission,” said Commission Chair Dennis Oshiro. “I believe all property owners have a perspective on how we can improve the system and we are actively seeking their advice.

Real property taxes are the primary source of revenue for the City and County of Honolulu. The tax system features various classes of property, as well as numerous exemptions and credits, which must be reviewed periodically to ensure that the system is as equitable and efficient as possible, Oshiro added.

In 2011 the City Council created the Oahu Real Property Tax Advisory Commission to advise and assist the Council by conducting a biennial review of the City’s real property tax system. The last report from the Commission was in November 2014.

In May the Council adopted Resolution 17-112 reestablishing the Commission and requiring that it issue a new report by December 1. The 2017 Commission met for the first time in July. Its next meeting is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, September 14, 2017, in the City Council Committee Room on the second floor of Honolulu Hale.
The public is encouraged to submit oral and written testimony. Written testimony may be sent to Commission aide Todd Swisher via e-mail at