Kokua Line

By June Watanabe

Thursday, October 21, 1999

Post office
parking lot a
big problem

Question: We have a post office box at the Pearl City post office. When we picked up our mail around 2:15 p.m. one day, there were student crossing guards and an adult guard who helped kids across the postal entrance.

There were several signs that said picking up or dropping off kids is forbidden in the post office lot. But as we tried to leave, a van ahead of us blocked our way out.

Two opportunities to leave the lot after crossing guards walked kids across were lost because of the driver's selfish parking in the traffic lane and talking to her kids. We finally gave a short honk and she honked back. After a few more minutes, she finally pulled out.

But at the traffic signal, she pulled up alongside and berated us for honking at her. We told her about the signs and she showed us a stack of mail she said she picked up as well as her children. We saw at least six other vehicles obviously picking up kids at the post office.

Can anything be done to stop parents from doing this? Who enforces this rule? The parking lot is nearly full and people just park wherever they want to when they are breaking this rule.

Answer: This is a "very old problem" that goes back more than 10 years, said U.S. Postal Service spokeswoman Felice Broglio.

Unfortunately, despite the efforts of the post office manager, police, the principal of Pearl City Elementary School and other government officials, some parents continue to ignore the signs, she said.

The school constantly encourages parents to do their pickup and drop-off at the school entrance on Waimano Home Road. "Most do," Broglio said. However, about a dozen parents refuse to do so, seeking to escape the congestion on Waimano Home Road by using the post office lot, she said.

For now, "Because of the location of the elementary school (adjacent to the post office), there appears to be no solution," she said.

The Postal Service not only is concerned about its customers not having access at their convenience, but about the safety of children "dashing across the parking lot during a busy time."

But police don't want to get involved in monitoring the lot. A postal supervisor previously came out and asked parents not to pick up/drop off their children, but some parents "would respond very emotionally." In other words, the situation became too confrontational.

The school also has lobbied for more bus routes so there would be less need for parents to drive, Broglio said. Meanwhile, there has been talk over the years about relocating the entrance to the post office, closing off the Acacia Road entrance, as well as getting rid of a sidewalk -- built by the Postal Service -- that now provides access to the school.

Q: Since it's so busy at the state ID office, if I am not able to get a state ID by Dec. 31, will I still be able to get it in January?

A: Yes. The Dec. 31 deadline pertains to state IDs issued before July 1997. Those IDs do not have expiration dates and thus, are all set to expire at the end of this year. IDs issued since then are good for six years.


To the stocky man who stole my bike on South King Street, next to Baskin-Robbins, about 3 p.m. last Sunday. About 20 people saw you and we're all looking for you. Return it to the place where you took it from -- it's my form of transportation, as well as recreation. -- Amy

Need help with problems? Call Kokua Line at 525-8686,
fax 525-6711, or write to P.O. Box 3080, Honolulu 96802.
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