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Tuesday, September 26, 2000

City & County of Honolulu

Pua‘ena Camp vote
delayed once more

With two vacancies, Council lacks
the votes either to kill or approve the
proposed Haleiwa development

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

A final vote on the controversial Pua'ena Camp project in Haleiwa has been delayed once again.

Scheduled to be heard at tomorrow's Honolulu City Council meeting, the project now won't be on the agenda until at least next month, Chairman Jon Yoshimura said yesterday.

That's when newly elected members Romy Cachola and Gary Okino are expected to fill the vacancies created when Donna Mercado Kim and Mufi Hannemann resigned in July.

Campers Village is seeking a special management area use permit for 72 tent-like vacation units at Pua'ena, similar to Molokai Ranch.

"I don't believe there are votes to kill it or to pass it," Yoshimura said. "So it would be useless to hear it.

"We would just have a very emotional hearing and end up not doing anything."

Though two of the nine council seats are vacant, five votes still are needed to pass a measure.

Council members Duke Bainum, John DeSoto and Rene Mansho have voted for the project while John Henry Felix, Steve Holmes and Andy Mirikitani have voted against.

Yoshimura has also raised concerns.

Kim and Hannemann both backed the project.

Members of Friends to Preserve Pua'ena Point raised suspicions when the Council first failed to place the issue on the August agenda, saying the delay would allow developer Campers Villages LLC time to win more votes.

Mansho, who represents the North Shore, promised in August that the vote would be taken Sept. 27, because it would unfair to the developer to delay it longer.

Mansho said she did not know why Yoshimura delayed the vote.

Warren Scoville, a member of Friends to Preserve Pua'ena Point, said he and others in the group met with Yoshimura last week and were told there would be no vote tomorrow.

"I would prefer it to be on there even if no action were taken one way or another," he said.

"But neither (Yoshimura) nor we want to inconvenience people."

A Pua'ena project representative could not be reached for comment.

City & County of Honolulu

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