Army Corps of Engineers to host public meeting about proposed plan for former Waikōloa Maneuver Area’s Section 15
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – responsible for managing restoration efforts at the former Waikōloa Maneuver Area in South Kohala on the Island of Hawai‘i – will host a public meeting on Aug. 12 about the Final Proposed Plan for the Sector 15 Munitions Response Site.
The Corps is now seeking public review and input on the plan, including the proposed decision for no further action on the site.
Sector 15, a formerly used defense site, encompasses 11,200 acres east of Waimea and primarily comprised of Pu’ukapu Hawaiian Home Lands, including Kūhiō Village and Kanu o ka ʻĀina school.
This Munitions Response Site historically was used as a non-live fire maneuver training area during the World War II era. No evidence has been found that indicates military munitions were used for training within the site, the news release said.
A “no further action” letter proposed by the federal agency would allow lessees to build homes again within Pu‘ukapu. While there are homes in the area, building ceased in 2014 and insurable loans to buy in the area were no longer available until the Army Corps of Engineers could inspect the land.
Because it’s a bomb zone, a “no further action” letter from the Hawai‘i Department of Health is a required document for home buyers to provide to U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which insures the home loan.
During an Army Corps of Engineers’ Restoration Advisory Board meeting in May, David Griffin, Waikōloa Maneuver Program Manager, said the process for Sector 15 should be finalized by the end of the year.
Lt. Col. Ryan Pevey, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Honolulu District commander, said it is “one big step” in the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act process and the larger Department of Defense remediation plan for the former Waikōloa Maneuver Area.
“There’s additional work in collaboration with our partner agencies to reach response complete at Sector 15, but we’re on a positive trajectory with the larger [formerly used defense sites] effort in Waikōloa,” he said. “I’m proud of the work this team is doing and will continue to prioritize [this] mission to support the restoration of these lands.”
The public is invited to attend an in-person public meeting Aug. 12 at 2 p.m. at Waimea Elementary School to learn more about the proposed plan for Munitions Response Site Sector 15 to include the proposed decision of no further action for this site.
The meeting will be recorded and posted to the project website. The proposed plan is available at the Thelma Parker Memorial Library for public review and comment from July 24 through Aug. 25.
A digital copy can be downloaded at: www.poh.usace.army.mil/Missions/Environmental/FUDS/Waikoloa.aspx
Oral and written comments received during the 30-day comment period will be recorded and answered in the Responsiveness Summary of the Record of Decision. Comments can be submitted by postal mail or email:
- Email: [email protected]
- Postal: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Honolulu District
ATTN: CEPOH-PPE 230 Otake St., Fort Shafter, HI 96858-5440