DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES
PETER T. YOUNG, CHAIRPERSON
Phone: (808) 587-0401
Fax: (808) 587-0390
For Immediate Release:
DLNR To Hold
The Board of Land and Natural Resources will hold an emergency meeting today at 11:00 a.m. in the State's Video Conference Centers to authorize the Department of the Attorney General and its agents, employees, consultants, and investigators, to enter upon private property for the purposes of investigating and inspecting dams and reservoirs located within the County of Kauai pursuant to Hawaii Revised Statutes Chapter 179D.
The emergency meeting will be held in the DAGS Video Conferencing Center, in the basement of the Kalanimoku Building, 1151 Punchbowl Street on Oahu and other VCCs across the State, including:
Neighbor Island Video Conference Locations:
Hawaii – Hilo State Office Building Basement, 75 Aupuni Street, Hilo, HI 96720
Kauai – Lihue State Office Building, 3060 Eiwa Street, Basement, Lihue, HI 96766
Maui – Wailuku Juciciary Building First Floor, 2145 Main Street, Wailuku, HI 96793
Findings re: Emergency Meeting
1. Haw. Rev. Stat. § 92-8 (Cum. Supp. 2005) states that a board such as the Board of Land and Natural Resources (the “board”) may hold an emergency meeting in less time than usually required for notice under Haw. Rev. Stat. § 92-7 (Cum. Supp. 2005) if the board finds that an imminent peril to the public health, safety, or welfare requires the meeting, or if an unanticipated event requires a board to take action within less time than provided by Haw. Rev. Stat. § 92-7 (Cum. Supp. 2005).
2. Haw. Rev. Stat. chapter 179D provides the board with authority over dams and reservoirs, including dams and reservoirs located on private property.
3. Kaloko Dam and Morita Dam are dams as that term is used in Haw. Rev. Stat. chapter 179D. Both dams are located on the Island of Kauai.
4. On March 14, 2006, the Kaloko Dam was breached. Water raced through
the breach downstream to the Morita Reservoir. The Morita Dam was quickly
5. The water continued down to the ocean, destroying homes and property. More importantly, at least two lives were lost in the disaster and numerous persons are missing.
6. Rains continue to fall on Kauai.
7. The exact present condition of the Kaloko Dam is unknown.
8. The exact present condition of the Morita Dam is unknown.
9. It is critical that all facts regarding the disaster be gathered immediately in order to ensure that further failures and floods can be avoided or minimized.
10. Other dams elsewhere on Kauai are being severely tested by the recent rains.
11. It is critical that all facts regarding the disaster and regarding other threatened dams be gathered immediately so that all possible steps be taken to avoid additional damage to Kaloko Dam or Morita Dam and to avoid another disaster in the same area or elsewhere on the island.
12. Kaloko Dam and Reservoir and Morita Dam and Reservoir (as well as other threatened dams) appear to be located on or accessible only over privately owned property. State officials cannot be sure they will be able promptly to contact and obtain permission to enter onto the properties from the property owners.
13. The Attorney General concurs that the conditions necessary for an emergency meeting are present.
14. There is an imminent peril to the public health, safety, or welfare requiring the board immediately to meet and to consider proposals to: 1) authorize the Department of the Attorney General and its special agents, attorneys, and formally or informally retained experts and consultants in dam safety, construction, and/or maintenance to enter upon private property that contains dams or reservoirs (including those that have failed) on the Island of Kauai in order to investigate and/or inspect those dams and reservoirs and 2) request the Department of the Attorney General and its special agents, attorneys, and formally or informally retained experts and consultants in dam safety, construction, and/or maintenance, to assist the Board in performing the functions specified in Haw. Rev. Stat. § § 179D-6(2), (3) and (4) (Cum. Supp. 2005).
15. The above-described disaster is an unanticipated event that requires the board to take action within less time than is provided for in Haw. Rev. Stat. § 92-7 (Cum. Supp. 2005).
For more information, media contact: