POSTED: 28 December 2004 - 5:30pm

Decision on Kokee Master Plan, Jan 13th and 14th

Kokee Museum and Lodge as they appear today

The Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) will hold a meeting on Thursday, January 13th at 5:00pm at Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall. This meeting will be a briefing to the board about the draft Master Plan for Kokee State Park, including the public comments that have been submitted to the board. The next day, on Friday, January 14th at 9:00am at the Convention Hall, the Board will make a decision on whether or not to accept the draft Master Plan. The public will be allowed to make additional comments on both Thursday and Friday.

Lauren Tanaka, from the Division of State Parks of the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) suggests that Thursday evening may be the best time for public comment on the plan. However, people opposed to the plan may want to show up on Friday as well, to witness whether the board listens to the people of Kauai when they actually vote on the proposal.

The draft plan calls for a gate and an admission fee to the park. It also calls for cancellation of the long term leases on the cabins, with a master leasee to bid on the cabins and run them as a for profit enterprise. There has been widespread popular opposition to this plan.

Frank Hay, of Malama o Kokee ( has a plan for funding State Parks without charging a gate fee. He proposes a tax on rental cars to fund all State Parks. His plan is proposed in a letter to the DLNR. To download the PDF file (112K) of Frank's letter, click here

For more on the subject, see the articles below.


Petition collects over 1300 signatures in 10 days

SOURCE: JUAN WILSON 30 November 2004 - 7:30pm

Aerial photo of proposed gate to Kokee on Route 505 from page 233 of Kokee Master Plan Appendix 10/11/2004

Petition against Kokee gate, fee and community expulsion
gets over 1000 signatures.

The following is a copy of the text of a letter presented to the DLNR as part of written testimony in response to the November 18 presentation of the Preliminary Master Plan at Eleele School. Enclosed with the letter were several dozen copies of a petition circulated person to person and at local westside shops on Kauai.



30 November 2004

Lauren Tanaka,
Division of State Parks
1151 Punchbowl St, Rm 310
Honolulu, HI 96813

To the Board of Land and Natural Resources:

This letter and the enclosed petitions, with signatures of 1298 Kauai residents, are submitted as written testimony concerning the proposed DLNR Master Plan for Kokee State Park. The petition reads:

DLNR Kokee Plan Petition
We the undersigned believe the Master Plan for Kokee State Park, as presented by the Department of Land & Natural Resources (DLNR), should not include a guarded gate or require payment of entry fees. We believe that the plan to remove current residents and replace them with short-term tourist rental units is not in the interest of Kauai or her people.

Kokee has always been a place of refuge and refreshment for the people of Kauai. It is a sacred place and source of forest materials needed for many Hawaiian ceremonies and celebrations. Access to Kokee should not be denied by the DLNR out of motivations of fear and profit.

We wrote the petition as a way for citizens who were not prepared to testify to at least have some way to express their opinions at the public hearing on Kokee on November 18th at Eleele School on Kauai. At the meeeting there was an unexpected groundswell of support for our petition. We gathered 57 signatures within an hour. The petitions signed that night were turned over to Jim Hiermann, a planner representing the DLNR from RM Towill Corporation, (808) 748-7463. Mr Heimann said he would accept them and turn them over for submission as written testimony to the DLNR.

Moreover, at the meeting several concerned Kauai residents asked us for copies of the petition to circulate around the island. We provided copies to them, with instructions to return them to us or submit them directly to the DLNR as written testimony before December 3rd. Within the next few days, we had many calls for more petitions. Many westside businesses were filling them faster they could get more forms, so they were using makeshift additions to our petition to collect more signatures. Business owners reported that virtually everyone that read the petition signed it.

We are enclosing the petitions returned to us with a total 1298 signatures. It is possible that more of these petitions have been submitted directly to the DLNR, as per instructions on the bottom of our form. They should be added to the 1298 signatures enclosed.

We believe that the people of Kauai have overwhelmingly spoken on this matter. We urge the DLNR and it’s Board members to fulfill their responsibility as our public servants. The people of Kauai want no gate, no entry fee, and no destructon of the Kokee community for short term rentals in the final plan approved by the BLNR. The people of Kauai will not support a Kokee Master Plan with these features.

Sincerely Yours,
Juan Wilson & Linda Pascatore


Submit your testimony in writing by December 3, 2004 to:
Lauren Tanaka, Division of State Parks
1151 Punchbowl St., Room 310
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

You can call Lauren Tanaka at (808) 587-0293.
Visit the DLNR website at:

In a phone conversation on November 30th Lauren Tanaka indicated that there might be a Public Hearing on the Kokee Master Plan on Kauai on January 14th. This would be the next scheduled time frame for such a meeting. We'll let you know when we have a confirmation on any meeting date.

For more on this issue see Kokee Plan 1


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