East Hawaii News

Land Board Again Defers Naniloa Bond Shortage

June 15, 2014, 9:40 AM HST
* Updated June 17, 9:39 AM
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For the second meeting in a row, a state board has deferred taking action on the failure of the new owners of the Naniloa resort to post more than $2 million in bonds.

According to the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, WHR LLC has yet to post a $1 million performance bond as well as a $1.1 million improvement bond for one of the three towers on the property.

WHR acquired the state lease for the Naniloa Volcanoes Resort in January following a bankruptcy proceeding.

The Board of Land and Natural Resources deferred action on the bond requirement at its May 23 meeting and again on Friday.

A DLNR spokeswoman said the land board today voted to defer the matter for 90 days to gather more information.

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DLNR staff had requested that the land board cancel the Naniloa lease within 30 days if the two bonds are not posted.

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Engineering consultant Brown and Caldwell has been hired by the state to review WHR’s plans for renovation of what is now known as the Hilo Naniloa Hotel.

According to the consultant, the plans lack sufficient detail to complete that review.

WHR principle Ed Bushor, an Oahu developer, has told the state he intends to open the renovated hotel on Jan. 1, 2015.

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He reportedly has said that he expects to spend about $20 million on the project this year.

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