City cleared to ticket cars
in the Villages of Kapolei

A new state law is expected to resolve whether police can issue parking tickets in the Villages of Kapolei.

The city has said police do not have jurisdiction to issue parking tickets in public housing projects, which is a designation given to the Villages of Kapolei.

The law, signed this week by acting Gov. James "Duke" Aiona, clarifies state law with a new definition of "public housing project" that does not apply to a master-planned residential housing community such as Kapolei, developed by the Housing and Community Development Corporation of Hawaii. The law became effective Tuesday.

While police were able to enforce moving violations recently, they could not issue parking citations because the community was designated as a public housing project.

Since 1990, police could not issue parking or speeding tickets in the Villages of Kapolei because the city said it had no jurisdiction, said Warren Wegesend, general manager of the Villages of Kapolei Association, noting that the housing agency owns and maintains the roadways in the community.

It has been only in the last three months that officials enforced state traffic codes that include reckless driving and speeding, he said.

Police do, however, respond to crimes there.

Wegesend said the situation has been frustrating, and described roadways as a "racetrack." He added that pocket bikes "go screaming all over the place."

However, the city still is awaiting clarification from the state attorney general's office "as to what statutes this bill affects," said city spokesman Bill Brennan.

Bridget Holthus, special assistant to the attorney general, said, "The attorney general believes that the city should be enforcing traffic regulations in the Villages of Kapolei and that this bill, Act 120, should clear up any ambiguities that would hinder the city from enforcing any traffic codes in Kapolei."

The Villages of Kapolei are between Farrington Highway and Roosevelt Boulevard in Leeward Oahu and include affordable housing for more than 2,500 families.

City & County of Honolulu

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