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No agency wants to deal with boats left on streets


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POSTED: Thursday, July 02, 2009

Question: For the last six months, a boat on a trailer has been parked on the street. The city's abandoned vehicles office does not have jurisdiction over this. Who do I contact to have the boat removed?

Answer: Unfortunately, there's still no state or city agency that will claim responsibility for removing boats, with or without trailers, left on the street.

We explained this problem last year (Kokua Line, Jan. 6, 2008) and the situation hasn't changed.

The way the laws are written, no government agency has clear authority to tow away abandoned boats and the trailers they sit on unless they are guilty of a towable offense: creating a hazard, or blocking a driveway or fire hydrant.

If they are, then you can call the Honolulu Police Department at 911.

If not, neither HPD nor the city's Abandoned Vehicle Office will order the tow.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources does have authority to remove vessels left unattended for a continuous period within state waters or public property, but not if they sit on trailers.

State Sen. Suzanne Chun-Oakland told us last year that she was planning to introduce legislation to specify which agency would have authority to tow and dispose of boats and boats mounted on trailers abandoned on public roadways.

However, attempts to get the Department of Land and Natural Resources and the city Motor Vehicle and Licensing Division to agree on which one would have jurisdiction over removing abandoned boats on land went nowhere, she said.

The sticking point was primarily the cost involved, Chun-Oakland said.

She hopes to work out a compromise so that she can introduce a bill addressing the problem in 2010.

Question: Regarding people who don't show up for jury duty (Kokua Line, June 27), aren't driver's licenses the source for the list of potential jurors? If so, just say no-show, no driver's license renewal.

Answer: The state Judiciary selects jurors from the lists of registered voters and state income tax records, as well as from driver's license files.

We're told the committee that's looked into ways to cut the number of no-shows has considered many possible actions, including your suggestion, but no definite action has resulted.

Because names are taken from income tax records, minor children sometimes may receive a jury questionnaire (see Kokua Line, Aug. 16, 2004).

Mahalo

To all the people who helped my 91-year-old mother, Lillian Kuroiwa, on June 26 at the Honpa Hongwanji bon dance. She was enjoying the festivities, but when it was time to leave, she fell and badly cut her calf. She was taken by ambulance to Kuakini Medical Center's emergency room, where she was stitched up and sent home. At the bon dance, there were so many people who came to her aid and we would like to thank them all so very much. Unfortunately, my mother was unable to get their names. The police, church staff, bon dance participants and other people assisted her and notified me to go to Kuakini Hospital, where they took good care of her. She is truly grateful that so many people came to her rescue and would like to acknowledge her heartfelt gratitude. She is doing well now. —Faith Kaneshiro