East Hawaii News

Public Hearing Monday in Pahoa on Proposed ER

October 25, 2013, 4:59 PM HST
* Updated October 28, 12:10 PM
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A public hearing will be held Monday night in Pahoa on a proposal to develop a medical emergency room in the lower Puna town.

The meeting is scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. at Rooms 3 and 4 of the Pahoa Neighborhood Facility.

The Puna Community Medical Center, an urgent-care clinic located in the Pahoa Marketplace, is proposing to develop the facility on a five-acre parcel of state land. The property is located adjacent to the Keonepoko water tank on Highway 130 a little more than three-quarters of a mile west of the clinic.

Last year, the state Board of Land and Natural Resources voted to tentatively approve a lease of the land to PCMC, contingent on the completion of an environmental assessment and a subsequent finding of “no significant impact” for the project.

A draft of that study has been completed by Rene Siracusa of the organization Malama O Puna, and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources has indicated it anticipates the negative declaration determination.

Siracusa said once the planning process is complete and the lease has been secured, organizers can ramp up fund-raising efforts.

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