Molokai committee
supports ranch plan

The volunteer panel is scheduled
to hold community talks

A committee of Molokai residents supports a proposed master plan for Molokai Ranch, including its offer to give 26,200 acres to a land trust.

The committee, aided by the nonprofit Molokai Enterprise Community, voted 19-6 on Monday for the plan, with two abstaining.

Molokai Enterprise Community interim Executive Director Stacy Helm Crivello said the committee plans to proceed with more community discussions and work with the ranch in developing more details in the plan.

The volunteer committee was formed to help develop a plan for Molokai, with assistance of the Molokai Enterprise Community, a federally funded group formed to help revive the island's struggling economy.

Crivello said 10 of the 19 committee members supporting the master plan were native Hawaiians.

The plan also supports the ranch's proposed development of 500 acres of land at La'au in west Molokai.

Several residents critical of the ranch's proposed development at La'au have said the master plan fails to take into account the lack of water on Molokai and the future demands of native Hawaiian homesteaders.

Some native Hawaiians also don't want the development in La'au, where residents fish and gather food to supplement their subsistence lifestyle, even though the ranch has promised to have a resource manager protect the environment.

Native Hawaiian homesteader Glenn Teves said despite the vote, he feels the majority of people on Molokai are against the master plan.

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