New ‘Heritage Caucus’ aims to preserve historic isle spots
When it comes to preserving historic sites, state Rep. Corrinne Ching* wants people to think of more than just the traditional large-scale projects.
"With historic preservation, most people think it's got to be Mount Vernon or Iolani Palace," she said, "but it can be the cute little store down the street that is charming and lends character to the neighborhood.
"If we keep knocking down these places, you can't really get them back."
A desire to preserve the character of Hawaii's unique neighborhoods along with traditional historic sites led Ching (R, Nuuanu-Liliha) to form the "Heritage Caucus" among her fellow House members.
"We've been on a real upswing for a while (in real estate), and tourism is booming and that's great," she said. "However, what happens in those kinds of conditions? Are we going to knock down places that we're going to regret later, or are we going to take care of those special neighborhoods that give character to Hawaii?"
Ching and state Rep. Cindy Evans (D, Makalawena- Waimea) helped bring together the bipartisan, 15-member group of lawmakers with the mission to "identify, protect and preserve the state's cultural resources and to foster widespread appreciation of and respect for Hawaii's cultural heritage."
Proposals being introduced by the caucus this year include requiring the state to ensure sufficient buffers for public historic and cultural properties, supporting the preservation of Japanese shrines and temples in Hawaii, and providing a tax credit for renovation or preservation of historic structures, among others.
"It's just been a longtime goal of mine," Ching said, "and I'm glad to say Rep. Evans feels the same way -- that historic preservation get more attention."
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
» The first name of state Rep. Corinne Ching (R, Nuuanu-Liliha) was misspelled in a Page A2 article yesterday.