Put Waimea in land
trust, group urges

By Diana Leone

A nonprofit land trust is urging the city to place Waimea Falls Park in a land trust instead of handing the culturally significant North Shore park to a commercial operator.

'Ike 'Aina, formed in December 2000, said in a May 28 letter to city officials that it is "prepared to preserve, protect and restore the valley in a culturally appropriate manner, with direct input at every stage of management from the affected communities and organizations within that ahupuaa."

However, the group was not among the organizations that submitted formal proposals to run the park, which the city is seeking to buy under condemnation. Instead, it seeks to talk with city officials about the direction they are headed with the valley, 'Ike 'Aina Chairman Tom Lenchanko said.

"We hope to bring back the traditional aspect of the valley, not to commercialize it where you lose the whole meaning of the ahupuaa," or land area, Lenchanko said.

Wednesday was the deadline for proposals. Officials familiar with the situation said the city got proposals from the National Audubon Society, Ray Greene and Waimea Management LLC, and a third company.

City spokeswoman Carol Costa would not confirm yesterday how many proposals have been received or say how quickly they will be assessed. She said state procurement laws limit what can be said about proposals for services.

'Ike 'Aina board members and affiliations listed in the letter to the city include Lenchanko, Wahiawa Hawaiian Civic Club; Fred Cachola, Paulo Fujishiro, Bob Hera and Manu Meyer, Native Hawaiian Historic Preservation; Suzanne Case, The Nature Conservancy; Eric Enos, Kaala Farms; Neil Hannahs, Kamehameha Schools; Calvin Hoe, Hakipu'u 'Ohana; Tim Johns, Damon Estate; Mahealani Kamauu, Native Hawaiian Legal Corp.; and Lilikala Kame'eleihiwa, University of Hawaii Center for Hawaiian Studies.

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