Wall art and Walgreens discussed by Wahiawa/Whitmore Village Neighborhood Board

Jade Eckardt

The Wahiawa-Whitmore Village Neighborhood Board No. 26 held its regular meeting on November 15 at the Wahiawa Community Center.

Monthly reports from the Honolulu Fire Department were discussed, as well as plans for a building a Walgreens. Wall art around the town to promote nurturing children was discussed, and the project is being planned.

Complete meeting minutes are below.


CALL TO ORDER: Chair Ben Acohido called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.; with a quorum of seven (7) members present. Note – This nine (9) member Board requires five (5) members to establish quorum and to take official Board action.

Members Present – Ben Acohido, Cindy Bauer (arrived 7:03 p.m.), Joseph Francher, Dean Harvest, (arrived 7:09 p.m.) Jeanne Ishikawa, Silvia Koch, Mary Jane Lee, Robert Lormand, Hugh Lowery.

Members Absent – None.

Vacancies – The Board has no current vacancies. 

Guests – Liz Ngo, Mike Street, Dan Keeley,  Lieutenant Jacob Galbreath (U.S. Navy), Reno Champ, Keanu Young (Councilmember Reed Matsuura’s Office staff), Mike Young, Captain Eric Brown (Honolulu Police Department), Captain Anthony Sung (Honolulu Fire Department), Bob Kent, Tracy Kubota (Senator Marcus Oshiro’s representative), Myra Chinen, Alesia Au, Fredric Sohl, Mike Lyons, C & D Minter, Aiasi Matuatia, Pua Yong, Chersina J. Micky, Rolanda Mariano, Patricia Tupinio, Pat Low, Christian Colman, Glenn Richards, Sam Baxter, and Aisha Wang (Neighborhood Commission Office staff).

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: Chair Acohido welcomed everyone to the meeting and led in the pledge of allegiance.

Bauer entered the meeting at 7:03 p.m.; 8 members present.

INTRODUCTION OF GUESTS: Chair Acohido introduced the honored guests, the Wahiawa Bobby Sox Champions and their coach, Patricia M. Tupinio. Chair Acohido read a resolution recognizing Tupinio as a leader in girl’s softball from 1973; coaching over 3 decades of teams, harboring community pride and being instrumental in the growth of Wahiawa Bobby Sox.

The entire coaching staff and the Wahiawa Bobby Sox team were individually introduced in recognition of the year of hard work to attain the status of Bobby Sox Champions.

Harvest entered the meeting at 7:10 p.m.; 9 members present.

7:12 p.m. Recess called to allow Bobby Sox Champions enjoy the recognition and engage in picture taking

Appreciation and Recognition Ceremony: The meeting continued with Chair Acohido mentioning his plan to reinstate the “Aloha” meeting where the Board would have the opportunity to recognize special members of the Wahiawa community such as Senator Bobby Bunda and Frederic Sohl as well as EMS director known as the “flying ambulance,” Patty Dukes.


First Responders and Defenders:

Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) – Captain Anthony Sung reported the following:

October 2010 Statistics – The HFD responded to a total of 90 calls; 3 structure, 8 wildland, 7 rubbish, 2 vehicle, 65 medical, 1 search and rescue, and 4 miscellaneous.

Fire Safety Tips – The holiday season means festive decorations, extensive food preparations, and family get-togethers. Enjoy family celebrations during the holiday season with the following helpful fire wise tips:

Consider a fire-resistant, artificial Christmas tree. If a real tree is purchased, choose one as fresh as possible and keep it hydrated and away from heat sources. Use noncombustible materials for decorations. Choose only Underwriter’s Laboratory-approved electrical decoration and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and usage. Do not overload extension cords.

·      Family gatherings often include extensive food preparation and visiting guests. If you must leave the stove, even for a few minutes, turn it off. Unattended cooking is the number one cause of home fires. Have a metal lid ready to cover grease fires in pans. Never wear long, loose-sleeved clothing while cooking. Turn the handles on pots and pans inward to prevent accidents. Keep children away from cooking areas.

·      Turkey fryers can be very dangerous. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) discourages the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers that immerse the poultry in hot oil. The NFPA states that “turkey fryers that use oil, as currently designed, are not suitable for acceptably safe use even by a well-informed and careful consumer.” Further information can be found on the NFPA website at www.nfpa.org. Using the search engine, type “turkey fryers.”

·      If you are hosting overnight guests, share your home escape plan with them, including the designated meeting place outside the home.

Questions, Comments and Concerns followed:

1.    Drowning – A Board member asked about the recent drowning incident and was curious to know if the body was identified. The HFD representative referred the question to HPD who stated that the body was not yet identified; however it does not appear to be foul play.

2.    Firefighter Work Schedule – There was a question as to what a firefighter’s schedule was and HFD representative responded by explaining that the fireman’s work duty is 3-watches; 1 for 24 hours rotation in 3 shifts then a 4 day continuous time off.

Honolulu Police Department (HPD) – Captain Eric Brown reported the following:

October 2010 Statistics – There was a total 50 calls that the HPD responded to in the area of Wahiawa; 4 unauthorized control of a propelled Vehicle, 2 auto thefts, 13 burglaries, 9 unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, 0 graffiti and 23 thefts. Capt. Brown explained that the difference between a UCPV and a UEMV is that in the UCPV the motor vehicle must be operated.

Questions, Concerns and Comments followed:

Drowning – The Captain reiterated that they have not identified the body in the drowning; however, there does not appear to be any foul play involved.

Upgrades – Have there been any upgrades to the police facility in reference to the security cameras and public parking lot sign closure from the Department of Facilities Maintenance? Captain Brown responded that there had been no upgrades so far.

Point of Contact – There is an abandoned derelict trailer boat on known Board of Water Supply (BWS) easement that is creating a dangerous hazard. Board member would like to know if HPD could provide the proper point of contact in reporting this situation. BWS has already been notified and referred the problem to HPD.

School Security Issues – Are the school’s consulting the Police in regards to security issues and are teachers involved in the evacuation process; are these evacuation plans held year round? The answer was yes to all questions regarding the Police advising the schools as well as evacuation plans.

Parking Distance to Crosswalk – A resident questioned Captain Brown on the distance allowed from the crosswalk when parking because he is concerned about safety and avoiding a child being hit because they could not be seen when cars are parked too near a crosswalk.

Property Damage at Iliahi – Follow-up was requested of the property damage that had occurred at Iliahi School. Captain Brown had no other incidences to report regarding that specific situation.

Illegal Activity – A resident wanted to report a high incidence of illegal activity in front of a particular house in Wahiawa and Captain Brown responded quickly by saying that the illegal activity should be reported immediately, not brought to the Neighborhood Board meeting because nothing can be done unless the police officer witnesses the activity as it happens.

Armed Forces:

United States Army – Sergeant Major

Deployment of Infantry – On Thursday, November 24, 2010 there will be a deployment of the 25th Infantry. Visitors should enter through Lyman Gate.

Helicopter Noise – There will be intermittent loud noise due to the taking apart of helicopters to be loaded onto the ships for deployment.

Questions, Comments and Concerns followed:

East Range – There is a section of the East Range that is protected by barb wire and is corroding causing a dangerous situation. Representative will make sure that this issue is taken care of immediately.

Trees – A number of trees that border the Army property are wrapped by vines and in danger of falling and damaging surrounding property.

3rd Brigade – The deployment next week Thursday will not be a big ceremony; however the 3rd brigade deployment in the spring would be an event not to be missed.

United States Navy – Lieutenant Jake Galbreath reported the following:

Appreciation – Lieutenant Galbreath would like to give his appreciation to the community for the support that was felt by his brother’s and sister’s on the Navy Veteran’s Day Celebrations and reminds everyone that many of the sailor’s are young and impressionable and having a good first time experience in the Navy makes joining the Navy a good experience.

Operation Aloha – There will be a public outreach for Operation Aloha to be held on November 25, 2010. For more information contact NCTAMS PAC

Whitmore Concern – Lieutenant Galbreath reported that the situation regarding the youths who were put in prison when caught trespassing on the military property will be handled by giving warnings to youth who are caught trespassing. He apologized for the incident and explained that adults caught trespassing, it is standard procedure to arrest, and however, in the case of youth in the future they would be released with a warning.

Mayor Peter Carlisle’s Report: A Memo of Record was sent to Chair Acohido for review but was not reported at the meeting.

Councilmember Reed Matsuura – Representative Keanu Young reported the following:
Matsuura appointed – Young reported that Donovan Dela Cruz was elected to the Hawai’i State Senate and resigned his Council seat.  Young also reported that Reed Matsuura was appointed to fill the remainder of Dela Cruz’ term which ends when Councilmember-elect Ernie Martin is sworn in on Jan 3, 2011.

Request for Information Services Report – Young reported that the following Request for Information Services Reports (RISR) we submitted to the City Administration on behalf of the Wahiawa and Whitmore communities:
·      Request for Information Services Report to repaint the bus stops in the Whitmore area.
·      Request for Information Services Report requesting the City consider constructing a restroom facility at Kahi Kani Park.
·      Request for Information Services Report to fill potholes Whitmore area potholes (Aheahe, Ehoeho, Ihiihi.)
·      Request for Sidewalk at Kulia/Whitmore (need to initiate an Improvement District Process for this request.)
·      Request for Information Services Report for marked crosswalk at Kulia Street/Hanau Street.
·      Request for Information Services Report to install No Parking signs at Pekelo Place.
·      Request for Information Services Report for the City to install a traffic light at the Kunia Drive/Kunia Road intersection.
·      Request to City Administration requesting the consider initiating a fee of $25.00 per camping permit.
1.  Request for Information Services Report to address the defective street light at Kilani/Westervelt
Questions, Comments and Concerns that followed:

1.    A resident wanted to know if resolution 10-278 (renaming the Wahiawa municipal lot after Mrs. Ellen Hyer was adopted. Representative Young said that it was adopted.

2.    A request was made by a Board member to meet with Councilmember Matsuura regarding the cities open markets and Young reported that he would take this back to the Councilmember’s secretary.

Senator Marcus Oshiro – Representative Tracy Kubota reported the following Representative Marcus Oshiro will be holding a pre-session forum for the residents in the Wahiawa District Park – Hale Koa Room on Tuesday, December 14, 2010 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. If there are any questions, please call his office at 586-6200.


Parking question – A resident was concerned with the dangerous traffic situation that exists near the swimming pool. He sees a problem with parked cars blocking the view of people in crosswalk and would like to know what is the legal distance from a crosswalk can a car be parked.

He also said that the light at the crosswalk near Glenn Avenue and Kellog Street is out.

Pekelo Street – Resident wanted to discuss the issues raised in Keanu Young’s report from Councilmember Reed Matsuura’s report regarding Pekelo Street.

Walgreens – Community member/developer, Pat Low wanted to share with the community the plans that were occurring with the purchase of the old Servco property which will become Walgreen’s. Low shared that his company has found that when a property’s physical aspects were changed; lives were changed. For example, rentals on Ohai Street were totally gutted and now, building is at full capacity with crime levels in the area reduced.

There many resident concerns as to the traffic flow and parking situation and the effects it would have on the community when Walgreen’s opens up in Wahiawa.

The benefits of opening of Walgreens were discussed as far as 24 hour opening of the pharmacy and the addition of full time living wage positions available for approximately 25-30.

APPROVAL OF REGULAR MEETING MINUTES: Hearing no objections, the regular meeting minutes of the October 18, 2010 were approved as circulated. Chair Acohido requested that the minutes and agenda be reviewed by all board members suggesting that the draft of the minutes be e-mailed to all Board members before being mailed out for the next meeting in January.

Update Status on Wahiawa Sewer Facility: A presentation by the Department of Environmental Services regarding the Waste water treatment back-end improvements was given.

·      This will be the largest treatment facility on the island.
·      Benefits creating recycled wastewater (R1)
·      There will be significant improvement to the reliability of the wastewater treatment plant.

Questions, Comments and Concerns that followed:

1.    Odor Control – Residents were concerned with the ability of the plant to control odor. The presenter assured the audience that the plant would be able to reduce the smell greatly from previous companies.

2.    Waste Removal – A question was raised as to the waste removal process. The presenter said that the waste was transported to Hanaouliuli wastewater treatment facility.

3.    Flooding Situation – There was a question as to how well the wastewater treatment would stand a flooding situation that is an ever present issue in Wahiawa. The presenter assured the audience that the output of 2 million gallons per day had a sewer capacity of 1.5 million gallons.

4.    Wahiawa Wastewater Treatment Plant– The chair requested that the Board be invited for a tour in spring for the Wahiawa.

5.    Department of Health – Has the DOH signed off on R1 water at the Wahiawa treatment plant? Yes, the Department of Health has approved the R1 water.

Wall Art Project on Kilani Avenue: The presentation was presented by Reno Champ;

An artist of Samoan ancestry shared with the community his project named “Fathering the Son,” a project to design wall art around Wahiawa. The design is a special message of hope to have young people nurturing their young.

He is requesting Board support to design three other walls including the one on Kilani Avenue. Champ shared photos of his sketches that he designed and the process of designing the wall. He hopes to share with community children his message of young people nurturing the young. 


Treasurer – Treasurer Dean Harvest reported that the Board expended $55.34 for the month of October leaving a balance of $3,586.13. He stated that he was concerned that the balance of Wahiawa’s account was automatically boosted to the current amount. A motion was made to accept the report as filed.

Community Organizations:

1.    Transportation Committee – No report.

2.    Dam/Waterway Committee – Today was the start of improving outlet tower. This tower will allow Lake Wilson to drain at a rate of five feet in a day as opposed to two feet in a day. This improvement will allow the level of the water to remain at a higher level and more able to handle rain water flooding.

Wahiawa Community Base Development Organization – No report.

Wahiawa Business Community Association – No report.

Whitmore Village Community Organization – Meetings are held the 2nd Wednesday of each month.

Wahiawa Historical Society – The organization is asking for community support in the purchase of the DeHarne property at 1690 Walea St. The Wahiawa Historical Society plans to enhance the property, which is a historical landmark, and also would like to create a destination in the heart of Wahiawa to visit.

Resident Grace Dixon, a member of the Wahiawa Historical Society highlighted several reasons in support of a request to the Board for their support. She stated that the owners of the property are looking for an organization that will preserve the historical value of the property. Also, because the property is a historical site there is a lower property tax.

A motion was made by Lormand and seconded by Harvest to generally support the Wahiawa Historical Society’s plan to purchase the DeHarne property. The motion was APPROVED 8-1-0(AYE: Acohido, Bauer, Francher, Harvest, Ishikawa,  Lormand, Lowery. Nay: Lee)


Next Meeting: Neighborhood Board # 26 will recess in December, 2010. The next Regular Board Meeting will be held on Monday January 24, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. Wahiawa Recreation Center.

Committee of the Whole Meeting: Tentatively scheduled for Monday,
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 9:50 p.m.

Submitted by Aisha A.C. Wang, Neighborhood Assistant