CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Kahuku Villages resident Jeff Compoc held a sign on Kamehameha Highway yesterday during a rally.
Council backs Kahuku residents
Resolutions address fears of eviction when Campbell Estate sells its North Shore land
Kahuku residents welcomed passage of resolutions by the City Council yesterday to keep alive their hopes of keeping their homes and their rural lifestyle.
The Council adopted resolutions asking for action to protect, condemn and exchange land for the subdivision because residents fear they will lose their low-rent homes when landowner the Estate of James Campbell sells the property.
"These resolutions make everyone aware of us and our needs -- the simple people, the plantation people," said Kay Kaneshige-Afalava.
"I think (the resolutions) gave the residents an opportunity to have a voice, and it allows the residents to hopefully pursue other solutions," said Council Chairman Donovan Dela Cruz, author of the measures and the district councilman.
The Council met yesterday on the Brigham Young University campus in Laie, about a five-minute drive from Kahuku, where the Campbell Estate is selling 2,000 acres of property it owns, including the homes of about 70 families.
Kahuku families were joined in a demonstration by opponents to the proposed expansion of the Turtle Bay Resort. Several dozen demonstrators from both groups lined Kamehameha Highway at the entrance to the university to rally for support with signs such as "Save Kahuku" and "Keep Kahuku Country."
The four measures approved by the Council would:
» Urge the state to enter into the Hawaii register of historic places land at Poamoho Camp, Kunia Camp, Waialua Mill Camp and Kahuku Villages.
» Ask the state to condemn about 200 acres of Campbell land that would include the low-rent homes on what is known as Kahuku Village V, golf course and beach front.
» Ask the city administration to start the planning process to finish developing Kahuku Village IV, the city-owned affordable-housing project that has been stalled for 20 years. Some residents currently living in the Campbell-owned homes have been waiting for the city to finish its project on which they have lots reserved.
» Request the administration to look at the possibility of exchanging city land for the Campbell land beneath the homes.
The measures and two other resolutions still in committee that advocate for the city to condemn the Campbell land beneath the city's nine-hole golf course and the Kahuku V homes are causing concern over Campbell's land sale and the potential for litigation against the city if the resolutions scare off potential buyers or devalue the land.
"The threat of litigation persists," Deputy Corporation Counsel Diane Kawauchi told the Council. "The concern of the landowner persists."
Kahuku residents also disagreed on the best path to save the homes, the golf course and the beach access in their community.
While some said condemnation or a land exchange might be extreme, others said they need all options on the table.