Saturday, August 4, 2001

Judge limits what
signs at Kaanapali
can indicate

Resorts still intend to sue 2
businesses at the Maui beach

By Gary T. Kubota

WAILUKU >> Maui Circuit Judge Joseph Cardoza has ordered businesses to stop posting equipment rental signs on the beach at Kaanapali, including the listing of prices.

But Cardoza said his ruling does not stop them from putting up signs showing the location of their operation and from receiving unsolicited business.

The ruling yesterday came in a lawsuit brought by the Kaanapali Beach Resort Association seeking a preliminary injunction to halt the operation of two businesses that have state recreational use permits at Kaanapali Beach.

John Belles Jr. and Dave Flavin, operators of the businesses, have argued that they were being singled out and that some resorts have signs on their sailboats and cabanas on the beach.

Cardoza said he hoped the association and the two businesses would be able to resolve future conflicts outside the courtroom and to keep in mind that the beach was for public use.

"Remember that the beach there is for everyone," he said.

Belles, owner of Blue Water Surf equipment rentals, said he has already taken down his solicitation signs but will continue to operate at Kaanapali Beach.

Belles' attorney Andrew Von Sonn said the ruling allows the businesses to operate on the beach and to have their business names posted to enable clients to find them.

"We're all right with this," Von Sonn said.

Association attorney J.P. Schmidt said his clients intend to proceed with the lawsuit and seek a permanent injunction against the beach operators.

Schmidt said Cardoza ruled on the evidence available at this time and that the association intends to obtain more evidence to prove its case before the hearing for a permanent injunction.

"If the permit allows them to do business on the beach, it is an illegal action," Schmidt said.

The state has said that enforcing the ban is difficult because it does not know where the boundaries are between state and private land.

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