HONOLULU — The Hawaii State Department of Health Clean Air Branch has finalized a Consent Order with Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company (HC&S) for excess emission and reporting violations that occurred from 2009 to 2014 in Puunene, Maui. More than 400 violations, including issues such as boiler operations and delayed notifications, were documented through the Department of Health’s extensive records reviews of semi-annual reports, deviation letters and additional information submitted by HC&S.
“With the impending end of the last sugarcane commercial operations in Hawaii, the department is working to bring closure to a number of complex and long-standing regulatory issues that have involved extended legal negotiations with HC&S,” said Keith Kawaoka, deputy director of Environmental Health. “The Consent Order represents the diligent work of our staff to resolve pending emission and reporting violations as HC&S conducts its final year of sugar cane production on Maui.”
The terms of the Consent Order with HC&S include a $300,000 monetary penalty and a $300,000 two-phase Supplemental Environmental Project. The first phase of the project involves the installation of three air monitoring stations at various schools throughout Maui Island to monitor fine particulate matter (PM2.5) for the remainder of the 2016 sugar cane burning season. The second phase provides monetary support to aid in the further development and implementation of the University of Hawaii’s Vog Measurement and Prediction Project (VMAP).
The Consent Order also requires HC&S to pay stipulated penalties for each emission and reporting violation that occurs from Jan. 1, 2015 until the Consent Order is terminated.
In addition to this most recent Consent Order, the Department of Health Clean Air Branch continues to provide regulatory oversight of HC&S’s sugarcane burning operations on Maui and has since issued the following enforcement actions:
A copy of the Consent Order and other notices is available at http://health.hawaii.gov/cab/clean-air-branch/notice-and-finding-of-violation-downloads-pdf/.
Through the air permit process, the Department of Health Clean Air Branch ensures companies comply with state and federal emission standards to minimize air pollution impacts on the public. The Clean Air Branch protects the people and environment of Hawaii by monitoring air quality and regulating businesses that release pollutants into the air. The Branch reviews and approves air permits, evaluates and enforces state and federal air standards, conducts inspections, and investigates reported incidents related to outdoor air quality.
The University of Hawai’i has received the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Notice of Allegations regarding the men’s basketball program. The report is being made available in accordance with Hawaiʻi’s public records law and the public interest.
Download the Notice of Allegations at http://go.hawaii.edu/FJ
“We take these allegations very seriously,” said UH Mānoa Chancellor Robert Bley-Vroman. “As a member of the NCAA, we are committed to following the rules and to maintaining the highest standards in all of our programs.”
According to the NCAA process, the next step is that UH and named individuals have up to 90 days to respond. Then the NCAA enforcement staff has up to 60 days to reply. We expect a hearing before the Committee on Infractions to be held in approximately six months.
UH cannot comment on the substance of the allegations because it is an ongoing NCAA matter, as required by the NCAA bylaws on confidentiality. UH has fully cooperated with the NCAA and will continue to do so.
KAHULUI – The Department of Land and Natural Resources and its Maui-based Community Fisheries Enforcement Unit (CFEU) is continuing to carry out success enforcement in north Maui waters with multiple citations this winter.
CFEU officers with the assistance of other Maui enforcement personnel issued 10 criminal fishing citations in November, involving a variety of prohibited activities including: possession of undersize kumu – 1; using a prohibited lay net – 1; possession of lay net exceeding dimensions – 1; using a thrownet in Kahului Harbor – 1; possession of undersize octopus – 1; and, exceeding Kahului Harbor FMA bag limit – 5.
Eight of these citations were issued within the Kahului Harbor Fisheries Management Area. The CFEU attributes many of the violations to an appearance of a baitfish school in the harbor. Fishers eager to catch the small fish for consumption were exceeding the bag limit of 50 specimens per person per day within the Fisheries Management Area (FMA) boundaries. Outside of the FMA it is legal to catch up to one gallon per person per day of these fish for personal use; however, FMA rules are more restrictive.
In addition, two citations were issued to an offshore laynet fisher at Kanahā Beach Park. The individual netted nearly 300 lbs. of various fish, the majority being ‘ama’ama (striped mullet). Laynet fishing is currently prohibited around the island of Maui.
CFEU officers also conducted 11 other investigations, which resulted in nine administrative violations for Kahului Harbor FMA check-in requirements.
The CFEU is a strong proponent of public education and wants to remind fishers that the mullet season is now closed. The annual closure began on December 1, 2013 and will last until March 31, 2014. This is to allow the mullet some relief from fishing pressure while it goes through its peak spawning season and ensure that populations will continue to be abundant into the future. The DLNR says that violators of the closed season restriction can face fines of up to $500, and/or 30 days in jail, plus up to $100 for each fish taken. During the open season, beginning April 1, 2014, mullet must be a minimum of 11 inches in length.
The CFEU was launched in spring 2013, aided by a new vessel – a gift to Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) from Conservation International (CI) Hawaii Fish Trust and Harold K.L. Castle Foundation. The Community Fisheries Enforcement Unit, a pilot project, is the first of its kind in the State of Hawai‘i, and includes a Makai Watch component to enhance the work of the unit’s three DOCARE officers.
The CFEU is working to stand up its first Makai Watch group in early 2014 with the help of community volunteers who will assist with public outreach and serve as the “eyes and ears” for the CFEU. Individuals who are interested in getting involved in this ground-breaking initiative may contact Mālama Maui Nui, an environmental non-profit organization that will be coordinating the first Makai Watch unit. Inquiries may be directed to John de Jesus, Executive Director, at (808) 877-2524 or John@cwdhawaii.org.
By Deborah L. Ward, DLNR
KAHULUI – Since its launch in spring 2013, the first Community Fisheries Enforcement Unit (CFEU) in north Maui is receiving favorable comments from the public due to increased enforcement efforts to protect nearshore fisheries. Helped by the gift of a new vessel to the state Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) from the Conservation International (CI) Hawaii Fish Trust and Harold K.L. Castle Foundation, the unit patrols a 13-mile stretch of north Maui coastline from Hulu Island to Baldwin Beach Park, extending three miles seaward.
“This Community Fisheries Enforcement Unit project is already showing us that an increased and regular DOCARE presence is helping to curb illegal activities that have the potential to hurt everyone, particularly our future generations, if our marine resources are left unprotected,” said Randy Awo, Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) administrator
Three DOCARE officers — a Makai Watch coordinator, a program coordinator, and a data manager — comprise this first-of-its-kind specialized state unit. The hope is that additional units will eventually be established statewide.
“The CFEU officers focused their efforts on illegal netting activities via land and vessel patrols,” Awo said, “The officers’ ability to focus on a specific region of the coastline, both on land and sea, has allowed them to gain an intimate knowledge of the area, including its variety of fishing activities and users.”
A total of 12 citations have been issued so far, with an additional eight investigations initiated. One of the eight cases involving the fishermen check-in requirement was forwarded to the state Division of Aquatic Resources for review.
As part of the pilot project, increased patrols and surveillance were conducted at Kahului Harbor Fisheries Management Area, due to the presence of baitfish schools (mainly nehu and gold-spot herring). While on vessel patrol, officers have observed and issued citations for other violations, such as for diver safety flag requirements.
In other measures, officers retrieved two unattended illegal lay nets and one unattended illegal throw net. And, while off-duty, the CFEU Supervisor observed ongoing spear fishing violations and coordinated a DOCARE response. The violator was apprehended and cited.
“The new fisheries enforcement unit aims to increase public awareness about the importance of ocean conservation and pono fishing activities on Maui. It also sends a message that we are serious about protecting the marine resources of Maui,” said William J. Aila, Jr., DLNR chairperson.
Community education is also a key component of DOCARE’s mission. Officers provided educational materials and interacted with free divers at the recent “Dive with Dad” tournament at Baldwin Beach Park. DOCARE has extended similar support at other fishing-related events in the past, including the Maui Roi Round-up, as a demonstration of their commitment to building a positive working relationship with marine resource users.
In June, CFEU Officers spoke with 12 high school students from across the state who were participating in Haleakala National Park’s Pohai Maile internship program. The interaction afforded the budding conservationists valuable insight to DOCARE’s mission and the CFEU project.
Officers also participated in Makai Watch meetings and teleconferences, which will soon lead to the completion of the volunteer component of the project. Makai Watch volunteers will be formally trained by CFEU officers and will help to provide public outreach and education to resource users as well as serve as the eyes and ears for DOCARE.
Fisheries Related Enforcement Statistics
· Investigations – 8
· Warnings – 0
· Citations – 12, consisting of:
o 3 – Prohibited lay nets
o 2 – Undersize mesh throw nets
o 2 – Undersize opihi
o 1 – Undersize kumu
o 1 – Undersized he‘e
o 1 – Prohibited net Kahului Fisheries Management Area
o 2 – Exceeding bag limit Fisheries Management Area
· Arrests – 0
· Administrative – One case involving fisher check-in requirement at the Kahului Harbor Fisheries Management Area was forwarded to Division of Aquatic Resources for administrative action.
HONOLULU — The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) Clean Air Branch (CAB) has issued Notices of Violations and Orders against severa; businesses across the state for air permit and pollution violations. The violations were either self-reported or discovered during inspection or records review by the DOH.
Four of the nine offending businesses are from Maui County. The companies were cited for the following violations:
The DOH Clean Air Branch (CAB) protects the people and environment of Hawaii by monitoring air quality and regulating businesses that release pollutants into the air. The CAB reviews and approves air permits, evaluates and enforces state and federal air standards, conducts inspections, and investigates reported incidents related to outdoor air quality. Through the air permit process, the DOH ensures companies comply with state and federal emission standards to minimize air pollution impacts on the public.
Many of the companies cited have already paid monetary fines for their violations; a company is currently negotiating a consent order for their fine and several have requested a hearing to contest the DOH orders. In general, penalties are assessed on violators to remove any economic benefit they may have gained from their noncompliance and put them in a worse situation than those who comply with the law. All fines are paid into a revolving special fund used to prevent or minimize damage to the environment.
HONOLULU — The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has filed a Notice and Finding of Violation and Order against Unitek Solvent Services, Inc. for violations that occurred in 2012 and 2013 at 330 Hukilike St., Kahului, Maui. The incidents involved the operation of an unpermitted solid waste management system that was accepting and processing disposed tires.
During an inspection conducted in February 2013, DOH noted the presence of approximately 10,000 tires at the 15,078 square foot site. DOH conducted two inspections of the site, one in 2012 and one in 2013. Unitek was warned to cease operating the unpermitted facility in a letter dated May 11, 2012. DOH imposed a penalty of $10,100 and ordered Unitek Solvent Services, Inc. to cease accepting solid waste and remove all solid waste from the facility. Unitek Solvent Services, Inc. may request a hearing to contest the allegations or order.
The DOH Solid Waste Section regulates standards governing the design, construction, installation, operation, and maintenance of solid waste disposal, recycling, reclamation, and transfer systems. Such standards are intended to prevent pollution of the drinking water supply or waters of the state; prevent air pollution; prevent the spread of disease and the creation of nuisances; protect the public health and safety; conserve natural resources; and preserve and enhance the beauty and quality of the environment.
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