With public announcement starting almost one month prior and updates posted on this board throughout the month on what we take as a very hot topic and concern not only on the South side, but all over the coast, the turn out for the Department of Health, Clean Water Branch (DOH-CWB) presentation was abysmal.
The two kane over from Oahu, accompanied by Megan Dailer from Maui for the DOH-CWB, had a half dozen attendees for the only Maui presentation on “Hawaii’s Beach Monitoring Program.”
Some of the points we learned are that DOH CWB has only ten tier one monitoring locations on Maui & they are tested once per week. Then there are forty five tier two sites, and those are sampled once a month! Does this sound sufficient? Most say no, but since this is just part of the job for the single Maui worker, Megan, obviously there are limitations. And oh yeah, Cove Park in Kihei is NOT one of them.
So what else did West Maui Watershed rep Tova learn? The DOH-CWB annual budget is $1.M. Yikes, no wonder they are limited. This money comes from the federal EPA, so look out for reductions!
How about our council rep Kelly King’s EA Susan? She heard that the results of testing are released the day after they are collected, so that could have a limited benefit.
How about the Surfrider rep? He heard that this “Beach Monitoring Program” has strict parameters, so what flows into the kai from streams is not considered.
How about the County Fire and Safety official? He heard the signage – see the graphic below – has very limited use because vandals steal signs and even produce counterfeit ones and place on beaches.
While KCA’s most frequent presenter, environmental scientist and water quality expert Robin Knox may have already been the best informed in the audience, she was able to offer comments and suggestions. That said, to go on the record you have to submit written comments by September 1.
One of our comments is going to ask that a tier one testing site be set up at Cove Park.