Park commercial concessions can have consequences

Park concessions could have consequences

March 15, 2011
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The Kihei Community Association is eager to hear the public response to the possibility of opening up food and activity concessions in our South and West Maui parks, an idea being considered to raise revenues.

Over the last six years, the KCA has worked with local individuals and businesses to purchase needed equipment for our parks – an ATV for Maui police park patrols, a personal watercraft for our lifeguards, coral reef etiquette signage, and park benches for Kalama Park.

Consider the KCA-supported service groups like the Kalama Park Action Team, which conducts regular safety patrols; and South Maui Volunteers, which hosts weekly volunteer cleanups. Local businesses make invaluable contributions to our parks. Individuals like Buck Joiner, Dave Handley and the late Gene Thompson have contributed countless hours toward park improvements.

Park volunteers worry that allowing concessions in our parks may have unanticipated consequences on established businesses. Many of the local restaurants and storefronts along South Kihei Road are park supporters and depend on park users for their customer traffic. These businesses and other generous volunteers might feel less likely to donate to a commercialized park where others are profiting.

We feel that it is important for the community to have a voice and a vote in this important decision, and that it will not simply be dictated from the county. As always, KCA stands ready to help.

Jon Miller

President

Kihei Community Association

Kihei

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