Punana Leo o Wai’anae 2016 Ku’ikahi Event Photos

Summer and Aunty Mele. Click here to view the album of photos from 2016 .Punana Leo o Wai'anae Ku'ikahi Event

Summer and Aunty Mele. Click here to view the album of photos taken by Summer Miles at the 27 Feb. 2016 Punana Leo o Wai’anae Ku’ikahi event.

Click here to view the "Ku'ikahi" album of photos by Francis Farrelly.

L-R: Stacelynn Eli, Kalehua Caceres, ʻEkekela Aiona, Rep. Jo Jordan, Sen. Maile Shimabukuro. To view the “Ku’ikahi” album of photos by Francis Farrelly, click here. Francis can be reached via email: golddiamondphotography@gmail.com, Website/Gallery: http://www.golddiamondphotography.com/

Shayne Sakoda and Maile Shimabukuro.

Shayne Sakoda and Maile Shimabukuro.


Keani holding the event program.

Sen. Shimabukuro and her son, Keani.    
Sen. Shimabukuro’s mother, Karen Young; and step-father, Dr. Fred Dodge.


Standing, L-R: Malia Miles holding Kamana’oli, Manny Miles, Sen. Shimabukuro, Summer Miles.  Sitting, L-R: Keohi, Keani, Karen Young, Fred Dodge, Shayne Sakoda.

For more information about Punana Leo o Wai`anae, visit their Facebook page or:


Corvette Center Ministries Grant in Aid Visit

On Friday, February 26th, we toured the Waianae Internet cafe to meet with applicants of our annual Grants in Aid. Grants in Aid are funding sources awarded by the Legislature each year for a variety of projects, programs, and other initiatives. If you haven’t been to the Internet Cafe yet, I highly suggest you check it out! They have fax/scan/copy services, as well as provide valuable job training skills with a specific focus on helping the homeless. The space is beautifully renovated and the staff are awesome!

Grant-in-Aid applicant: Corvette Center Ministries dba Zion Ipuka. Goal is to open a transitional center in Waianae and provide the homeless with a variety of services in order to serve as a bridge for them to transition back into the community.


Waianae Economic Development Council Grant in Aid Visit

The Waianae Economic Development Council (formerly the Waianae Coast Coalition) develops economic opportunities on the Waianae Coast. Their goals include building the physical infrastructure for local businesses to develop and grow by utilizing the rich culture, history, natural resources, and people of our community. Their Grant in Aid (GIA) request is for capital to build multi-certified kitchens and training facilities to serve as an incubator for start-up and small food producers on our coast.

Grant-in-Aid submitted by the Waianae Economic Development Council for a certified kitchen and community development capacity building.

Waianae Public Library Xeriscaping Project

The Waianae Public Library will be celebrating their 50th Anniversary, and in honor of that, they have undertaken a xeriscaping project to give the building a fabulous new look! Xeriscaping is landscaping and gardening that reduces or eliminates the need for irrigation, therefore establishing a sustainable and environmentally friendly beautification project.

And, did you know that the library has a mobile app, too?! Check it out!

Hawaii Literacy Program Grant in Aid Visit

The Hawaii Literacy program is seeking a Grant in Aid to help expand their program and services to the Waianae coast, Kauai, and Kona. They teach adult literacy, run the Bookmobile, have free family literacy libraries, and run the English Language Learner (ELL) program helping adults learn english and improve communication skills.

Click to access Hawaii%20Literacy,%20Inc._Redacted.pdf

Waianae Coast Community Foundation Grant in Aid Visit

Patti Kahanamoku-Teruya is the driving force behind Waianae Coast Community Foundation, a Grant in Aid applicant who is looking for funding to facilitate and support the growth and operations of the After School All-Stats program, the Nanakuli High and Intermediate School’s Project Graduation, and Toys For Tots Program (in partnership with the US Marine Corps).

Click to access Wai’anae%20Coast%20Community%20Foundation_Redacted.pdf


Ho`omana Pono Visit

Although not currently requesting a Grant in Aid, Ho`omana Pono, LLC, presented a little about their mission. They are an organization created to fulfill the need to Empower Kanaka Maoli, and give voice to the voiceless. DeMott and Momi Conner are the founders of this organization, and consistently come testify at the legislature on various Native Hawaiian issues and topics. Ho`omana Pono means: “Righteous Empowerment”.

Hoa’Aina O Makaha Grant in Aid Visit

Hoa’Aina O Makaha is made up of an amazing group of people, headed up by Gigi and working in partnership with Makaha Elementary School. They focus on “Learning by Sara Perry byline80Doing”, by providing hands on activities as they relate to classroom subject matter, as well as the important task of “growing people”. Children learn in this classroom without walls and focus on sustainability, culture, composting, plant life cycles, food systems, and animal care. Their Grant in Aid request will help facilitate and continue their container gardening initiative, which hopes to provide small container gardens to households all over the Waianae coast, teaching them to be healthier via gardening at home. If you have not visited this tiny parcel of paradise, I highly suggest you go check it out!

Na Kama Kai Grant in Aid Visit

Duane DeSoto heads up Na Kama Kai, a foundation which addresses ocean safety and Sara Perry byline80ocean access to children. They partner with the Junior Lifeguard Program, the Boys and Girls Club, and the Polynesian Voyaging Society, among many other amazing groups. Their Grant in Aid request would fund an ocean recreation and learning center at one of several possible locations around Pokai Bay in Waianae. It would act as a headquarters for ocean learning and safety programs that they offer to the community. For more information, you can email Duane at info@nakamakai.org.


Click to access Na%20Kama%20Kai_Redacted.pdf

Waianae High School – Teach for America award for Sarah Kern and Grant in Aid Visit

Senate President Ronald Kouchi and I visited Waianae High School (WHS) on 02/26/16 to see what was new and exciting on campus, and we learned about their Cooler Classroom initiative, putting PV/AC’s in their classrooms. Sara Perry byline80Niralyn Okuna of their Facilities showed us their pilot project AC unit of 2 Lezeti hybrid solar PV/AC units, generously donated by GreenPath Technologies. These systems save up to 70% on cooling costs, have no utility approval requirement, operate extremely quietly, and have zero feedback into the grid.

Another wonderful project being hoped for is a store front which would market goods produced by the students. Products would come from WHS’s aquaculture, organic farming, Searider Productions, and other programs. The store front would be located in an area between the harbor and the baseball field, and would be an interactive learning facility for students. Students would practice business skills, marketing, financial literacy, regulartory compliance, and social responsibility.

Also on our visit to Waianae High School, we had the pleasure of meeting Sarah Kern, who was awarded a Hawaii Milken Educator “Teacher of Promise” Award. She recieved a congratulatory Senate Certificate, as well as a monetary award from Hawaii USA Federal Credit Union. Congrats, Sarah! We need more teachers like you!!!


Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center – Grant in Aid Visit

Our visit to the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center was the perfect way to start the morning on February 26, 2016. As the largest employer on the Waianae Coast, they Sara Perry byline80cover myriad health, emergency services, dental care, and even certification for home care specialists and other health professionals. We had a lovely breakfast at Kaahaaina Cafe and talked about their Grant in Aid requests, the priority one being to fund an expansion of their dental clinic into the space currently occupied by their laboratory, so they can offer 6 more dental suites for patients. Because they are one of the only clinics to offer Medicaid dental services, they have more demand than they can currently handle, and are working diligently to expand as quickly as possible. The laboratory services will be moving into their newest building, which is adjacent to its current location and currently under construction.

Click to access Waianae%20District%20Comprehensive%20Health%20and%20Hospital%20Board,%20Incorporated_Redacted.pdf

Road Work on Farrington Hwy. update

NANAKULI (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Two lanes closed on Farrington Highway in the eastbound direction between Haleakala Avenue and Nanakuli Avenue on Sunday night, Feb. 28, through Friday morning, Mar. 4, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., nightly, for sewer installations. One lane will be open in each direction.

EWA BEACH (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Closure of the Farrington Highway westbound off-ramp to the southbound Fort Weaver Road on Sunday night, Feb. 28, through Friday morning, Mar. 4, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., nightly, for the rail project.

PEARL CITY (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Closure of the Farrington Highway eastbound off-ramp to the northbound H-2 Freeway on Sunday night, Feb. 28, through Friday morning, Mar. 4, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., nightly, for the rail project.
PEARL CITY (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Lane closures on Farrington Highway in westbound direction between Waiawa Road and the Kamehameha Highway Overpass on Sunday night, Feb. 28, through Friday morning, Mar. 4, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., nightly, for the rail project.
WAIPAHU (WEEKEND/NIGHT WORK) Closure of the Farrington Highway eastbound off-ramp to the H-1 Freeway on Sunday night, Feb. 28, through Friday morning, Mar. 4, from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., nightly, for the rail project.

For more information, please visit the project website for The Rail at http://www.honolulutransit.org/.






Star-Adv 2/27/16: ‘Plans for afternoon contra-flow lane in Nanakuli’

DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARADVERTISER.COM State Sen. Maile Shimabukuro toured the potential site of an extension of the Waianae Coast Emergency Access Route on Friday. Shimabukuro, left, talked with resident David Lopes, far right, about the possibility of a bypass road next to his property. Also pictured are resident Demott Conner, in the black shirt, and Jeffrey Fujimoto, an engineer with the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.

Star-Adv: “State Sen. Maile Shimabukuro toured the potential site of an extension of the Waianae Coast Emergency Access Route on Friday. Shimabukuro, left, talked with resident David Lopes, far right, about the possibility of a bypass road next to his property. Also pictured are resident Demott Conner, in the black shirt, and Jeffrey Fujimoto, an engineer with the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.” Photo by Dennis Oda, Star-Advertiser.

Excerpts from Jayna Omaye’s “Plans for afternoon contra-flow lane in Nanakuli in works,” Star-Advertiser 2/27/16.

State officials are working on plans for a temporary contra-flow lane on Farrington Highway in Nanakuli to relieve afternoon traffic congestion.

The contra-flow lane would extend from Piliokahi Avenue to Helelua Street from 3 to 7 p.m. weekdays, where one eastbound lane would be turned into a westbound lane, said Ed Sniffen, deputy director of the state Department of Transportation’s Highways Division. Sniffen said they want to get the 1-mile contra-flow lane up and running this summer but will first present the idea to the Nanakuli/Maili Neighborhood Board in March and the Waianae Coast Neighborhood Board in April.

“We want to put something into place now,” Sniffen said Friday at a news conference on Helelua Street. “This contra-flow is not just going to improve things here. Coming up on Kalaeloa (Boulevard) is going to be much easier after the contra-flow is in.”

The department is also working on a project to widen Farrington Highway from Nanakuli to Haleakala avenues to add a new lane for vehicles turning left, with a targeted April 2017 completion. Sniffen said officials are now looking into extending the turn-lane project to Hakimo Road.

State Sen. Maile Shimabukuro (D, Kalaeloa- Waianae-Makaha) applauded DOT’s efforts to setup a contra-flow lane, calling it a “common-sense, efficient and practical way” to relieve the traffic bottlenecks through Nanakuli.

“It’s something the community has been begging for for decades now,” Shimabukuro said Friday. “I think the community will be so happy to hear that we’re finally getting some attention for this long-awaited project.”  Continue reading

DOT 2/26/16: Nanakuli Contraflow Lane



For Immediate Release: Feb. 26, 2016



HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) formally announces plans to begin a contraflow lane on Farrington Highway in Nanakuli later this year. Governor David Ige directed HDOT to develop operational solutions to improve mobility around our state. Gov. Ige specifically requested that HDOT implement a contraflow on Farrington Highway to improve the quality of life for our residents on the Leeward Coast.

The Nanakuli contraflow pilot project will create a third lane of travel for westbound drivers on Farrington Highway from 3 pm – 7 pm every weekday, excluding holidays. The mile-long contraflow lane is planned to begin at Piliokahi Avenue and continue past Helelua Street. During the contraflow hours signs, cones and markers will be displayed to safely convert the eastbound lane to create three Waianae bound lanes and one Honolulu bound lane.

HDOT is in the process of developing conceptual plans. During the contraflow hours, mobility on Farrington will be prioritized, and some turning movements from mauka and makai will be disallowed. Due to the turning restrictions, U-turn access points are being coordinated with the City & County of Honolulu to minimize impacts to drivers and area residents. We are currently working with City & County of Honolulu Department of Transportation Services and Oahu Transit Services to coordinate technical requirements. HDOT has scheduled appearances before the area Neighborhood Boards in March and April to gather input from the community before implementing the plans.

“Governor Ige is fighting for our residents and wants to begin projects that can be implemented quickly and improve conditions immediately,” said Ford Fuchigami, Hawaii Department of Transportation. “We are focusing the majority of our resources on maximizing our existing highway system, rather than capital improvements that will take years to finish.”

With the upcoming community input and feedback, HDOT anticipates the contraflow could be developed during the summer and implemented before the Beat the School Jam and the start of the next school year.

We appreciate the partnership with Sen. Maile Shimabukuro who has been pushing for traffic improvements on Farrington Highway and has been working towards those improvements over the past several years.

“Implementing the Governor’s vision is made easier when working with community champions like Sen. Shimabukuro,” said Ed Sniffen, Hawaii Department of Transportation Deputy Director, Highways Division. “We are also moving forward with the study to extend the fifth lane on Farrington Highway to Hakimo Road and we are implementing a solution that will work now.”



Tim Sakahara

State of Hawaii Department of Transportation

Public Information Officer

869 Punchbowl Street, Room 504

Honolulu HI 96813-5097

Telephone: (808) 587-2160

Fax: (808) 587-2313

HNN 2/26/16: ‘State moves forward with contraflow plan to ease Waianae Coast commute’

Sen. Shimabukuro, Ed Sniffen (DOT Deputy Director), and Senate President Ronald Kouchi speaking to reporters about the Nanakuli contraflow project.

DeMont Conner and Richard Landford speaking to reporters about the Nanakuli contraflow project.

Lisa Kubota (Reporter)
Hawaii News Now
Feb 26, 2016 07:13 PM

NANAKULI, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) – Rush hour relief is on the way for thousands of drivers along the Waianae Coast. The state is moving forward with a contraflow pilot project. An average of 50,000 vehicles travel through the area each day, according to the Hawaii Department of Transportation. The only access route is Farrington Highway.

“My daily commute is anywhere from 1.5 to 2 hours and it depends cause if there’s accidents all along the way then it just adds exponentially,” said Nanakuli resident DeMont Conner.

One eastbound lane of Farrington Highway will switch to a westbound lane from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. between Piliokahi Avenue and Helelua Street. DOT officials hope to start the contraflow plan this summer.

“It’s something that the community has been begging for for decades now. We can’t thank the DOT enough for being open to this solution, a very common sense, efficient, and practical way to alleviate our traffic bottleneck,” said Sen. Maile Shimabukuro (D, Kalaeloa-Waianae-Makaha)

The price tag is $300,000 a year. The contraflow lane will stop once crews finish a separate project to widen the four-lane highway from Nanakuli Avenue to Haleakala Avenue to include a new lane for vehicles making left turns. The construction work is expected to wrap up in April 2017.

“Once the project is done, there is no need for a contraflow in this area anymore because the fifth lane is in. After that, we’ll start looking at if we should extend the contraflow out to other areas until the fifth lane project to Hakimo Road is done,” explained Ed Sniffen, Hawaii Department of Transportation Deputy Director, Highways Division.

State lawmakers are also looking at extending the Waianae Coast Emergency Access Road. One possibility involves using a private road off Helelua Street.

Copyright 2016 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

HNN 2/26/16: Contraflow Lane for Wai’anae Coast

Clips from Lisa Kubota’s “Leeward Traffic Trouble,” Hawaii News Now 2/26/16.

Sen. Shimabukuro 022616

KITV4 2/26/16: ‘Traffic relief in Nanakuli in the works’

Excerpts from Roger Mari ‘s “Traffic relief in Nanakuli in the works,” KITV4 Island News, 2/26/16:

Traffic relief is on the way for drivers on the Waianae coast. State transportation officials announced plans to begin a contraflow lane on Farrington Highway.

State officials say an estimated 50,000 cars per day use Farrington Highway, up about 20,000 from the year 2000. More cars, same road.

“The increase in cars and the increase in population are occurring without development. It’s something that hasn’t been taken care of for a while, so we’re putting more resources into it to address it now,” said Ed Sniffen, HDOT Highways Division.

The Nanakuli contraflow project will create a third lane of travel for westbound drivers on Farrington Highway from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays. The mile-long contraflow lane will begin at Piliokahi Avenue and continue past Helelua Street.

“It will change one of the eastbound lanes into a westbound lane during the p.m. peak condition,” said Sniffen.

In addition to the contraflow lane, an extension to the emergency access lane is under consideration. It would begin at the end of Helelua Street where the current emergency access road ends.

“We’re just here to explore this morning and to find out whether this is a viable way to extend the emergency access road,” said Sen. Maile Shimabukuro.

The hope is to connect it to Haleakala Avenue, which is the first street in the Nanakuli Homestead. For years, it had been proposed Conner hopes to gain support from the Hawaiian community on the leeward coast. Some are already on board.

For now, HDOT will concentrate primarily on the contraflow lane. They plan to discuss the project before the area neighborhood boards in March and April to get input from the community.

Read the full article on the KITV4 site.

What Medical Condition Benefits from Medical Marijuana


The Women’s Legislative Caucus


Good luck to the Eddie Aikau surfers!

We’re keeping tabs on the amazing competition here in our office today, and can’t help but be excited for our Waianae crew at the Eddie! Good luck, stay safe, have fun, represent! #eddiewouldgo

035895a5f750f081eef4d78303910ebfWishing Sunny Garcia and our Waianae watermen the best of luck and a safe day at the Eddie!


Brian Keaulana keeping everyone safe. Mahalo!