Update Re: DOT “Road Usage Charges” Study


Here is my report from DOT’s “Road Usage Charges” (RUC) workshop. DOT is contemplating replacing the gas tax with RUC based on mileage traveled out of necessity since gas consumption is going down due to increased fuel-efficient vehicle usage and use of mass transit. Hawaii, like many other states and countries, is studying RUC as a method to sustain needed funding to maintain roadways. Hawaii received a grant to study RUC and there will be no added charges to taxpayers to conduct the study.  
The big takeaways for me were:

1) If you drive a car with average fuel-efficiency, RUC should cost the same as the gas tax;

2) If you drive a fuel-efficient vehicle, RUC should cost more than the gas tax; and 

3) If you drive a vehicle with low fuel-efficiency (eg, pick-up truck, mini-van, SUV, older car, etc), RUC should cost less than the gas tax.
The bottom line is that under the current gas tax system, people driving fuel-efficient cars are not paying their fair share, while those with non-fuel-efficient cars are paying more than their fair share. With RUC, someone driving an electric vehicle (who currently pays zero gas tax), will now pay the same rate as someone who drives a regular gas-powered vehicle. The RUC “levels the playing field” between those with the least fuel-efficient cars and those who can afford electric vehicles, hybrids, etc.
So hopefully in areas like the Waianae Coast, where pick-up trucks, SUVs, mini-vans, and older cars are popular, the majority of drivers would see a decrease in their overall transportation costs under an RUC system.
DOT is planning to post videos of presentations from the RUC workshop on their website. Check it out for further information. I will continue to keep you posted as I learn more.
For more information, see: http://dartagnan.co/2016/01/hawaii-department-of-transportation-selects-dartagnan-to-support-feasibility-study-of-statewide-road-usage-charging/
Pictured is DOT Highways Division Deputy Director Ed Sniffen speaking to attendees at DOT’s RUC Workshop, which took place from Oct. 3-5 in Honolulu.

Donate to Foodland’s Give Aloha Campaign and Support Local Farming

Foodland is asking for donations to their Give Aloha Program which is sponsoring a local farm out in Wai`anae. By donating at your local Foodland/Sack N Save you can help expand this farm and impact local communities!


 Moku O Waianae Community Meeting 09-27-16


Made on the Waianae Coast- Business Conference

Have a crafts business or want to start a craft business on the Wai’anae Coast? This is a great event to get your start or find new connections.


Register for the event below and join in for a night of Networking & Business Development!

Waianae Products and Crafts Business Conference Event

Makaha Valley Country Club Expanding Services


The Makaha Valley Country Club is now going to be incorporating different options for company parties and events! Their ultimate goal is to ensure the success of the golf course and hire more within our community. See the attached flyers for details on their events.

H-1 Eastbound Closure for Kapolei Interchange 9/26/16 – 9/30/16

The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) advises Oahu motorists of overnight closures on the eastbound H-1 Freeway at the Palailai Interchange between the Campbell Industrial Park/Barbers Point Harbor Off-Ramp (Exit 1A) and the Farrington Highway Overpass on Monday night, Sept. 26, 2016, through Friday morning, Sept. 30, 2016. One lane will be closed from 8:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. and all lanes will be closed from 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m., nightly, for lane shift re-striping work and placement of portable concrete barriers for the Kapolei Interchange Complex Phase 2 project.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

The eastbound lanes on the H-1 Freeway will be shifted to the left towards the median to relocate a 30-inch waterline that is currently under the right shoulder lane. This is necessary to accommodate the new bridge abutment for the Kapolei Interchange. Portable concrete barriers will be installed to isolate the work area from oncoming traffic.

During closure hours, eastbound motorists will be detoured to Kalaeloa Boulevard from the Campbell Industrial Park/Barbers Point Harbor Off-Ramp (Exit 1A). Motorists may take Kapolei Parkway, Kamokila Boulevard or the Wakea Street On-Ramp to the H-1 Freeway to continue eastbound. HDOT advises motorists to expect delays and account for the planned closure in their commute time. (See detour map below)

Electronic message boards have been posted on the eastbound H-1 Freeway and Kalaeloa Boulevard to notify motorists of the closures. Special Duty Police Officers will be on-site to assist with traffic control. Emergency vehicles, first responders and The Bus have been notified of the roadwork and will be allowed through the work zone. Roadwork is weather permitting.

Detour map

Dollars for Waianae Scholars community collaboration

The following story is being shared from the Kamehameha Schools I Mua Newsroom:

Dollars for Scholars paves the path to college for Wai‘anae coast haumāna

By Nadine Lagaso
August 30, 2016

Rising college tuition costs can be a roadblock for students who want to pursue a post-high education. Kamehameha Schools is part of a new collaboration to help Wai‘anae coast students break down that barrier by walking them through the financial aid application process.

Financial aid workshops were held recently throughout the region as part of a community collaboration called “Dollars for Waiʻanae Scholars.” The partnership includes KS as well as Waiʻanae High School, Nānākuli High and Intermediate School, Kamaile Academy,  Teach for America, Leeward Community College, UH West O‘ahu, and Mānoa Educational Talent Search.

“This is a perfect example of what a regional approach looks like within our Community Engagement and Resources Group,” said Kalei Kailihiwa, KS regional director for the Waiʻanae coast. “Our staff is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with members of our community to make a greater impact in the lives of keiki so they can succeed.”

The Wai‘anae coast is home to the highest concentration of Native Hawaiians in the state. According to state census data, approximately 60 percent of the region’s population is Native Hawaiian.

Dollars for Waiʻanae Scholars works directly with high schools to raise awareness among Native Hawaiian students about financial aid opportunities. The campaign workshops help haumāna complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) required for federal and state financial assistance. It also engages high school students in encouraging their peers to complete the application process.

Amplifying Educational Efforts
Elaine Bowler, college and career counselor at Wai‘anae High School, says that the campaign maximizes the work she has already been doing.

“By communicating our individual efforts and merging all the financial aid activities and events into a suite of activities, I was better able to share with high school seniors and their families the resources available to them within school and in the community,” she said. “Advertising all of the resources in one format also gave students and parents more options to access support.”

The Power of Partnerships
Although KS does not own any land in the Waiʻanae region, efforts like Dollars for Wai‘anae Scholars are important to help fulfill the educational vision of Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop.

Joe Mareko, college recruiter for the University of Hawai‘i at West O‘ahu, has been a key supporter of the Dollars for Wai‘anae Scholars campaign.

“As a resident and graduate of Nānākuli High School, I am seeing firsthand how partnerships like this impact my community. I see more families taking advantage of college events, finding out ways to pay for college, and supporting their haumāna to succeed after high school.

“I am proud of the continuous work that we are doing for a region with students who, although they face tougher struggles in life than the norm, have the potential to exceed all educational expectations. All they need is a guiding hand, and we are providing that.”

KS One-Stop-Shops
Kamehameha’s Community Learning Center at Nānākuli plays an integral part of the campaign by serving as a one-stop-shop for financial aid information and support.

In addition to helping students complete the FAFSA, KS staffers also introduce them to KS post-high opportunities including the Nā Hoʻokama a Pauahi need-based scholarship. Since the inception of the one-stop-shop program in 2014, Nā Hoʻokama a Pauahi application completion rates have increased by 129 percent, and award rates increased by 120 percent.

If you have questions about post-high scholarships, please call the KS Applicant Services Center at 808-534-8080 or toll free at 1-800-842-4682, then press 2. For face-to-face kōkua, visit the KS Resource Center nearest you. Be on the lookout for info on upcoming Dollar for Wai‘anae workshops starting in October.

KS Nā Ho‘okama a Pauahi Scholarship
Application window: 10/03/16 – 02/17/17

This need-based scholarship is available to students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees at an accredited post-high institution in the United States recognized by KS.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid
Application window: 10/01/16 – 06/30/18

Federal Student Aid, a part of the U.S. Department of Education, requires the completion of FAFSA forms to determine student eligibility for financial aid including federal grants, loans, and work-study funding.

For the first time ever, families are able to submit prior-year tax forms and documents (2015-2016) to complete their Nā Ho‘okama a Pauahi and FAFSA and applications for the 2017-2018 academic year.

If you have questions, please call the KS Applicant Services Center at 808-534-8080 or toll free at 1-800-842-4682, press 2. For kōkua, visit the KS Resource Center nearest you. Be on the lookout for info on upcoming Dollar for Wai‘anae Scholars workshops, starting in October.

A KS collaboration is helping Wai‘anae students navigate the college financial aid application process. Among the members of the hui are: Front – Joe Mareko (UHWO), Summer Miles (LCC), Elten Lau (Wai‘anae HS) and Raemie Pagaduan (Nānākuli HS). Middle – Kalama Pastor (Kamaile Academy), Meilan Akaka-Manfre (Teach for America), Elaine Bowler (Wai‘anae HS), Kat Hoppe (Kamaile Academy), Tamara Heck (UH-Mānoa) and Nick Childs (Mānoa Ed. Talent Search). Back – Raymi Faria (HI P-20), Andrea Dias (KS) and Janis Dela Cruz (Mānoa Ed Talent Search).