East Hawaii News

DHHL Proposes Extending Terms of Commercial Leases

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The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands is holding meetings statewide on proposed changes to its rules that would extend the terms of commercial or multi-purpose leases.

The Big Island meetings will be held Tuesday, Aug. 27, at the Waiakea High School cafeteria and Wednesday, Aug. 28, at the DHHL West Hawaii District Office in Waimea. Both are scheduled from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

The proposed amendment would extend the length of a general, non-homestead lease to 85 years from the current 65 years.

The Hawaiian Homes Commission Act also allows a 20-year extension for commercial and industrial leases.

Currently, 1.3% of Hawaiian home lands are under a general lease. Those lands generate about $10.2 million for the department.

Of those, 59% are located on the Big Island and 31% are on Oahu.

Examples of general lessees on the Big Island include the Walmart, Target and Safeway stores in Hilo, and the Villages of Laiopua and Lalamilo housing projects in West Hawaii.

According to the department, the DHHL has issued 126 general leases and 9,849 homestead leases.

The DHHL said there are currently 26,546 applicants on a waiting list for homestead leases.


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