Preferred Site Chosen for New OCCC
Gov. David Ige on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017, announced that his administration has completed the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the relocation of the O‘ahu Community Correctional Center (OCCC), identifying the Animal Quarantine Station in Halawa, Hawai‘i, as the preferred site.
“In my 2016 State of the State address, I announced an effort to work with the community to envision a new future for Kalihi and pledged to move forward with the relocation of the O‘ahu Community Correctional Center,” said the governor. “I’m confident that we will be able to build a modern facility at the Animal Quarantine Station that relieves long-standing overcrowding and is secure, efficient and cost-effective.”
After careful review of the extensive research and analysis contained within the Draft EIS, the departments of public safety and accounting and general services established the following site preferences for development of a new OCCC facility:
- Animal Quarantine Station Site – Preferred No. 1
- Halawa Correctional Facility Site – Preferred No. 2
- Existing O‘ahu Community Correctional Center Site – Optional if required
- Mililani Technology Park Lot 17 Site – Optional only if required
The Draft EIS includes a discussion of the impacts of constructing and operating an OCCC replacement facility at each of four alternative sites.
The department of public safety is also proposing to relocate female detainees currently housed at OCCC to the Women’s Community Correctional Center to better accommodate their needs. Relocating females to WCCC is also addressed within the Draft EIS.
“After careful consideration, I believe moving forward with the animal quarantine location as our preferred site is the right choice,” said Nolan Espinda, director of the Department of Public Safety. “It is critical that we build a more modern and efficient jail to house our current population, and today’s decision moves us that much closer to making this goal a reality.”
“The site selection and evaluation process used to develop the draft environmental impact statement for the replacement of OCCC was rigorous and transparent,” said state Comptroller Roderick K. Becker. “The state and its consultants have worked effectively to ensure the integrity of a process that included an extensive public outreach and engagement effort and the identification and evaluation of potential impacts to the environment and the public.”
Preparation of an EIS is required pursuant to Chapter 343, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes (HRS) and Chapter 200, Title 11, State of Hawai‘i Department of Health Administrative Rules, based on the use of state funds and state lands.
The Draft EIS is available for downloading or viewing from the following sources:
- OEQC’s direct link to the document or visit the online EA/EIS Library through the OEQC website
- OEQC’s The Environmental Notice for Nov. 8, 2017 (link provided within the newsletter)
- SmartComment link set up for the OCCC project
- OCCC Future Plans website
- Printed copies are available at: Hawai‘i State Public Library, Kalihi-Palama Public Library, Aiea Public Library, Mililani Public Library, Kailua Public Library and Hawaii Kai Regional Library.
The Draft EIS public comment period began on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017, and will end on Jan. 8, 2018.
The Nov. 8, 2017 issue of OEQC’s The Environmental Notice will provide contact information (mailing and email addresses) for addressing public comments.
PSD will also host a public meeting to share its findings and to allow for public comments and input concerning the Draft EIS and the proposed project at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, at the Aloha Stadium Hospitality Room, 99-500 Salt Lake Blvd. in Honolulu.
Additional information concerning the OCCC project is available online.