Office of Hawaiian Affairs update

Jordan Aikau

An audit of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs says the agency needs to improve management of real estate holdings and do a better job of monitoring grants it awards.

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs’ vote in favor of buying the Gentry Center violated the agency’s own investment policy, the State Auditor says. The audit, released Wednesday, hits the agency pretty hard for its inability to manage its own land holdings to make money and to ensure oversight of its grant program.

The state auditor is looking into Hawaii’s 13th largest landowner, the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs. The land management infrastructure of the agency charged with serving native Hawaiians is “inadequate, unable to support the office’s growing portfolio nor any future land involvements,”acting State Auditor Jan Yamane said in a 64-page report to the Legislature.