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Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board Meeting July 2020 Minutes
THURSDAY 2 JULY 2020
HAWAII PACIFIC UNIVERSITY
MULTI-PURPOSE ROOM 2
CALL TO ORDER: Chair pro tempore Kevin McDonald called the meeting to order at 6:04 pm. A quorum was established with eight members present. (Note: This nine-member Board requires five members to establish quorum and to take official Board action.)
Members Present: Robert Armstrong, Roxie-Anne Kamoshida, James Logue, Kevin Lye, Sandy Ma, Kevin McDonald, Willis Moore (by telepresence), and Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock.
Members Absent: Dolores Mollring.
GUESTS: Captain Sean Arakaki (Honolulu Fire Department); Lieutenant Brian Taniguchi (Honolulu Police Department); Marc Alexander (Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative); Wes Frysztacki (Department of Transportation Services): Glen Young (Senator Karl Rhoads' Office); Councilmember Carol Fukunaga; Lee Stack (Chinatown Improvement District); Todd Yukutake (Hawaii Firearm Coalition); Scott Morishige (Governor's Home¬less Coordinator); Greg Payton (Mental Health Kokua); Fran Butera (Chinatown Watch); Shawn Hamamoto (Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation); Ave Kwok, Ernest Caravalho, Ronald Higa, JJ, Robert Higgins, Ra Long, and Jamie Brown (Residents); Jackson Coley (Neighborhood Commission Office). Name was not included if not recognized or legible on the sign-in sheet.
INTRODUCTION OF BOARD MEMBERS
The Board members introduced themselves to the assembly. Chair pro tem McDonald disclosed that he is a small-business owner in the Board's district.
ANNUAL NEW FISCAL YEAR BUSINESS
Election of Board Officers: Chair pro tem McDonald outlined the election rules.
• Chair: McDonald opened the floor to nominations for Chair. Lye nominated himself. Armstrong nominated himself. Shubert-Kwock nominated Kamoshida, who declined the nomination.
LYE WAS ELECTED CHAIR (LYE: Kamoshida, Logue, Lye, Ma, McDonald, and Moore; ARMSTRONG: Armstrong; ABSTAIN: Shu-bert-Kwock).
Chair pro tem McDonald passed the gavel to Chair Lye at 6:19 pm.
• Vice Chair: Chair Lye opened the floor to nominations for Vice Chair. Logue nominated Kamoshida, who accepted the nomination. Lye nominated McDonald, who accepted the nomination. Ma nominated Armstrong, who declined the nomination.
KAMOSHIDA WAS ELECTED VICE CHAIR (KAMOSHIDA: Armstrong, Kamoshida, Logue, Ma, Moore, and Shubert-Kwock; MCDONALD: Lye and McDonald; ABSTAIN: None).
• Secretary: Chair Lye opened the floor to nominations for Secretary. McDonald nominated Armstrong, who de-clined the nomination. There were no further nominations and no volunteers.
• Treasurer: Chair Lye opened the floor to nominations for Treasurer. Armstrong and Lye nominated Ma, who ac-cepted the nomination.
MA WAS ELECTED TREASURER (MA: Armstrong, Kamoshida, Logue, Ma, Moore, Shubert-Kwock, McDonald, and Lye).
Setting Rules of Speaking: Chair Lye stated that agendized presentations will be limited to three minutes and comments by those on the Board and from the gallery will be limited to two minutes. Additional time for agendized items may be granted as needed through a motion to limit or extend the limits of debate. The Board is required to receive public input.
Continued ‘ lelo Coverage of Meetings: Chair Lye inquired and Jackson Coley, Neighborhood Commission Office, confirmed that funds have been provided for ‘ lelo broadcasting.
Committee Approvals: This Board currently has no standing Committees. Chair Lye noted that the Board can form commit-tees at a future time if needed.
Selection of Meeting Location: Chair Lye inquired and Coley confirmed that the Board has permission to continue meeting at Hawaii Pacific University; the regular meeting room will be moved to multi-purpose room 3 for the remainder of 2020.
PUBLIC SAFETY REPORTS
Honolulu Fire Department (HFD): Captain Sean Arakaki reported the following:
• June 2020 Fire Statistics: There were 2 structure fires, 4 nuisance fires, 5 activated alarms, 98 medical emergencies, 1 vehicle collision with a pedestrian, 3 vehicle crashes, and 2 hazardous materials incidents.
• Emergency Preparedness Safety Tip: Hawaii is in hurricane season which lasts from June through November. HFD encourages residents to prepare for emergencies by planning ahead, preparing a survival kit, and staying informed. Additional information is available at www.honolulu.gov/dem.
Honolulu Police Department (HPD): Lieutenant Brian Taniguchi circulated a handout and reported the following:
• June 2020 Crime Statistics: There were 9 motor vehicle thefts, 7 burglaries, 44 thefts, 22 unauthorized entries into motor vehicles (UEMV), 34 assaults, 3 sex assaults, 2 graffiti incidents, and 6 drug incidents.
• Anti-Robbery Tips: Tips were provided to discourage robberies. Watch out for kupuna, avoid flashy and expensive bags and jewelry, and avoid going to automated teller machines at night.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Hotel Street Windows: Logue inquired about broken windows on Hotel Street and if HPD apprehended any sus-pects. Lieutenant Taniguchi responded that three suspects were apprehended, although they were immediately released due to concerns about COVID-19.
2. Arrested Protestors: McDonald stated that he was arrested at a protest on Friday 1 May 2020 at the State Capitol, although there were no arrests for a different protest at the same location a few weeks thereafter. McDonald in-quired why HPD made arrests when the Capitol is under the sheriff's jurisdiction. Lieutenant Taniguchi responded that he was unsure and agreed to investigate further.
3. Panhandling: Chair Lye inquired if a past or future statute could assist HPD in preventing or controlling panhandling on medians, specifically at the intersection of Pali Highway and Vineyard Boulevard. Lieutenant Taniguchi recom-mended calling 911 so HPD can issue citations. Armstrong commended the HPD for removing panhandlers around Queen Emma Gardens.
4. Extra HPD: Fran Butera of Chinatown Watch inquired about an announcement regarding extra HPD enforcement in Chinatown. Lieutenant Taniguchi lacked details, however HPD expects new recruits which may be assigned to Chi-natown and Waikiki for a fourth watch. Butera voiced concerns regarding Fourth Watch being an inconsistent presence. Lieutenant Taniguchi noted that Waikiki controls the Fourth Watch.
5. Honolulu 311 App: A resident stated that his wife was attacked while in her car and when HPD was contacted they recommended reporting it on Honolulu 311. The resident inquired about the app and when it should be used. Lieutenant Taniguchi responded that he was unfamiliar with the app and recommended calling 911 for similar inci-dents.
6. Homeless: Resident JJ voiced concerns regarding large numbers of homeless throughout the downtown-Chinatown area. Lieutenant Taniguchi stated that although HPD tries to move homeless to shelters, they reach capacity and the problem persists as homeless relocate to different areas. Lieutenant Taniguchi stated that HPD tries to chase home-less people away from areas which generate complaints. Lieutenant Taniguchi noted that some homeless oppose going into shelters and housing.
7. Homeless in Parks: McDonald noted that some neighborhoods lack homeless in their parks and inquired why there are homeless in the parks within the Downtown-Chinatown area. Lieutenant Taniguchi stated that although sweeps are done to remove encampments, sweeps in Chinatown often result in homeless returning because Chinatown has access to free amenities.
8. Gateway Plaza: Resident Ernest Carvalho voiced concerns regarding homeless around Gateway Plaza making noise late at night. Lieutenant Taniguchi responded that although HPD tries to remove the homeless people, they con-stantly relocate to other areas. Resident Caravalho inquired about Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Park and if park rules can be enforced. Lieutenant Taniguchi agreed to send officers to the area, but also stated the homeless will likely return, noting "We'll be sending officers over there to keep citing them but, like I said, ya know, they just come back. They're like cockroaches; they just come back."
9. Street Cameras: A resident voiced concerns regarding assaults from homeless and inquired if street cameras will be installed. Lieutenant Taniguchi responded that HPD is having difficulty getting a camera contract because they need three bids but only one has been submitted and it is not tenable. Armstrong noted that he has brought up this topic before and recommended talking with elected officials like the Mayor and Councilmembers to get cameras.
Neighborhood Citizen Patrol: Chair Lye reported the patrol has not met for two weeks but that he intended to lead the group next Tuesday evening.
Governor David Ige's Representative: No representative was present; no report was provided.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed: Walker Park: Ma inquired about the dilapidated condition of Walker Park and if there are plans to clean same. Chair Lye noted that this question will be forwarded to the Governor's office for a reply.
Mayor Kirk Caldwell's Representative: Marc Alexander, Office of Housing (HOU) Executive Director, circulated handouts and reported the following:
• Nu‘uanu Avenue/South Kukui Street Intersection: Responding to previous inquiries, the Department of Transporta-tion Services (DTS) stated that they have been unable to obtain accurate traffic and volume counts due to COVID-19, which are needed to conduct an investigation for safety improvements. DTS will inform the Board of their results by September 2020.
• Locking Trash Carts: Responding to previous inquiries, the Department of Environmental Services (ENV) stated that Chinatown has locking carts for approximately 90 business accounts. Each business must place all trash in carts with the lid locked; bags will no longer be used in the area. Any bags placed curbside are illegal and will not be picked up. Locked carts are expected to decrease random trash on sidewalks.
• Trash Pickups - Responding to previous inquiries, ENV stated that, by law, trash strewn on sidewalks is classified as litter and refuse collectors will not pick it up. Refuse collectors only collect trash that is properly prepared per City ordinance. Illegal dumping should be reported to 911.
• Bethel/Merchant Streets Intersection: Responding to previous requests, DTS stated that they completed their eval-uation of the intersection but were unable to evaluate traffic congestion at peak hours due to COVID-19. However, inspection by DTS confirmed that pavement markings and signage on Bethel Street (between Nimitz Highway and Merchant Street) are faded or damaged. A work order will be issued to re-stripe the faded pavement markings and replace damaged and faded signs.
Moore departed at 7:08 p.m; seven members present.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Hotel Street Open-Street: McDonald approved of the planned Chinatown improvements recently announced by the office of the Mayor but objected to the lack of communication with the Board, particularly in regards to the planned Hotel Street closure. Wes Frysztacki, DTS Director, responded that the Hotel Street Open-Street is on Saturday 11 July 2020 from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm and is not an event. Director Frysztacki clarified that the open-street is intend-ed to help businesses recover from COVID-19. Buses will be rerouted to allow pedestrians to walk along Hotel Street and some restaurants will use sidewalk space for tables. The event is timed to avoid inconveniencing bus riders. Director Frysztacki stated that street rehabilitation is also planned for Chinatown, including bulbout im-provements and a bus lane on King Street.
2. Bulbouts: Shubert-Kwock voiced concerns and opposition to the bulbouts, stating that the bulbouts are too large and advocated looking at alternatives to improve safety. Director Frysztacki responded that the bulbout size will be reduced and noted that there has been a 40% decrease in pedestrian accidents at bulbout intersections. Shubert-Kwock also voiced concerns regarding the City not consulting with the Board and community, and voiced concerns regarding increasing on-street parking fees.
3. Previous Board Resolution: Armstrong noted that although the Board passed a resolution in January 2020 request-ing regular DTS representation, DTS has not sent representation until now. Armstrong inquired why DTS did not come to the Board already and voiced concerns regarding the lack of consultation. Armstrong requested assurance that DTS will have a representative at every other subsequent Board meeting. Director Frysztacki declined to make any such assurance and noted that DTS comes to the Board when they are on the agenda and that DTS cannot pro-vide regular representatives with their current staffing. Armstrong reiterated concerns and noted that Board members are elected while department directors are not.
4. Hotel Street Open-Street (continued): Logue voiced approval of the closure and inquired how cross-streets will be managed. Director Frysztacki responded that special-duty HPD officers will be posted at each intersection, and the intersections will be closed between River and Alakea Streets.
5. Parking Rates: Logue advocated lower public parking rates during non-peak hours. Director Frysztacki responded that DTS will look into this.
6. Trash Bags: McDonald inquired about ENV not picking up trash bags that are outside of locked trash bins. Director Alexander responded that sanitation decisions were based on COVID-19 and that litter is addressed by the Depart-ment of Facility Maintenance (DFM). Director Alexander recommended reporting litterers.
7. River of Life (RoL): Butera voiced concerns regarding RoL food recipients littering along local streets. Butera in-quired what to do when homeless people are witnessed littering. Alexander noted that use of the 311 app is war-ranted, that the community could form an association to effect patrols of the area, and that resources should be al-lowed into the community to help people in need. Butera noted that such an organization had been formed, and asked if it was being suggested that citizens pick up trash left behind by RoL patrons. Alexander replied that yes, he was indeed suggesting that, like he and Mr. Frysztacki do as residents of Chinatown and the downtown area, people pick up trash when it is seen in our community.
8. Trash: Resident Carvalho voiced concerns regarding trash and advocated for having the City pick up trash. Director Alexander responded that ENV only addresses trash in containers due to their union contract and the DFM ad-dresses trash on streets. Director Alexander outlined other services which the City provides to Chinatown which are unique to Chinatown.
State Senator Karl Rhoads: Glen Young, Senator Rhoads' office, reported the following:
• McKinley High: $4.73 million in Capital Improvement Project (CIP) funds were distributed for an athletic complex at McKinley High School.
• Quiet Zones: Although hospitals are the only quiet zones on O‘ahu, there are maximum acceptable noise levels for different classes of areas such as residential (55 decibels), business (60 dB), and industrial zones (70 dB). More in-formation can be found by contacting the Department of Health (DOH) Noise Section on (808) 586-4700.
• Liquor Commission: Senator Rhoads sent a letter to the Honolulu Liquor Commission (HLC) advocating shortening hours for retail liquor sales. More information will be provided when a response is received.
• Reminders: Residents are reminded to submit their Census 2020 information and that voting in the 2020 election will be through US mail.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Liquor Commission: Shubert-Kwock voiced appreciation for the letter and reported that at a recent meeting HLC decided to take no action to reduce retail liquor hours. Shubert-Kwock voiced safety concerns, advocated addi-tional legislation to require HLC to act in the interest of public safety, and noted specific concerns regarding Mau-nakea Liquor, advocating reductions in their hours of operation. Young agreed to refer these concerns.
2. Quiet Zones: Armstrong voiced gratitude for the information provided about quiet zones and advocated finding a way to reduce noise levels within communities. Young agreed to refer the comments.
3. Public Notice: McDonald voiced concerns regarding bills being introduced without public notice, bills changing over time, and prior testimony being discarded with such changes. Young agreed to refer these concerns.
State House Representative Scott Saiki: No representative was present; no report was provided. Armstrong requested that Chair Lye invite Representative Saiki and Representative Luke to attend the meetings. Armstrong recommended removing them from the agenda if they will not attend. Chair Lye agreed to contact the office of each.
State House Representative Daniel Holt: No representative was present; no report was provided.
City Councilmember Carol Fukunaga: Councilmember Fukunaga circulated handouts and reported the following:
• Private Security Guard Services for City Properties: Although the City is continuing its private security services, Councilmember Fukunaga advocated urging the Department of Land Management (DLM) to include areas which abut City Parks, specifically Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Park.
• Security Cameras: Funds have been budgeted for security cameras in Chinatown. Councilmember Fukunaga rec-ommended coordinating with the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) to learn about their initiatives in Waikiki and move the project along.
• River of Life (RoL): A letter of protest was sent to RoL regarding the recent assault on private property. RoL was asked to not invite people into the neighborhood if RoL cannot certify that they will behave in a safe manner. Councilmember Fukunaga noted that RoL no longer serves meals inside their facility and advocated having RoL re-turn to interior dining to reduce street litter.
• Corrections: Councilmember Fukunaga circulated a list of proposed corrections for the Board's June 2020 minutes.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Concerns: Shubert-Kwock voiced concerns regarding RoL, HLC, and homeless in Chinatown not being supervised by host facilities. Shubert-Kwock advocated legislation to protect the community. Council¬member Fukunaga noted that new homeless facilities in Iwilei will help alleviate issues in Chinatown by redirecting homeless persons.
2. RoL Relocation: Shubert-Kwock inquired about ROL relocating out of Chinatown. Councilmember Fukunaga reiter-ated that a letter was sent voicing concerns and calling for RoL to resume interior dining.
3. Security Cameras: Armstrong expressed gratitude for the security camera follow-up.
4. Park Maintenance: Armstrong requested maintenance for Kamali‘i mini-park next to Central Fire Station.
5. Conditional Use Permit (CUP): Butera voiced concerns regarding RoL and inquired if they have a CUP for their oper-ations, and how often such a CUP would be reviewed. Councilmember Fukunaga responded that she was unsure and that the City wants any operations by RoL to be done in a safe manner.
6. Homeless: Logue stated that the Hawaii Supreme Court recently ruled that establishments that are aware of dan-gerous persons on their property are liable for damages. Logue voiced concerns regarding patrons of RoL damag-ing property of nearby establishments. Councilmember Fukunaga advocated holding RoL responsible for such.
United States Congressman Ed Case: No representative was present; no report was provided.
Security Guards: Resident JJ inquired if security guards in Chinatown are trained. Councilmember Fukunaga responded that DLM is responsible for the City properties within Chinatown and has a contract with a private security contractor, adding that different security contractors network together to improve coverage and that the security guards are trained.
Board Officers: Resident Caravalho congratulated the new Board Chair and other officers, and reiterated care and concern raised earlier regarding Member Mollring.
Political Candidate: Resident Caravalho announced that he is running for Mayor of the city and county of Honolulu.
Chinatown Improvement District (CID): Lee Stack circulated a report and noted that she had been nominated to the Select Committee on Economic Assistance and Revitalization Stakeholder Advisory Group, formed by the City Council to address CARES Act funding. For the advisory group CID seeks community input, identification of unmet needs, and ideas regarding unforeseen expenditures arising from the COVID-19 pandemic not already included in the City's budget from March 2020; testimony can be submitted through www.cidchinatownhawaii.org or by emailing email@example.com. Stack also expressed gratitude regarding the extension of provision of secu-rity guards outside City properties, and noted that the new green bins appear to prevent people from rummaging through trash left on sidewalks.
Hawaii Firearm Coalition: Todd Yukutake stated that he is a member of Hawaii Firearm Coalition, a second amendment rights group which promotes self-defense, and voiced concerns regarding the long wait times to obtain firearm and taser permits.
Sundry Concerns: Resident Ave Kwok voiced concerns regarding homelessness, Chinatown's unhygienic smell, violence be-tween gangsters and homeless individuals, and RoL.
Presentation Addressing Ongoing Homelessness and Related Issues: Scott Morishige, Governor's Homeless Coordinator, and Marc Alexander, HOU Executive Director, circulated handouts and reported the following:
• Partners in Care Report: The 2020 homeless point in time (PIT) count found a 0.7% total increase with a 2% de-crease in unsheltered individuals. Methodologies were changed this year which increased the number of homeless included in the count. Reports have been prepared for each district with Region 1 [Downtown Honolulu] showing the highest number of unsheltered homeless people on O‘ahu.
• Temporary Quarantine Isolation Center (TQIC): The TQIC was set up for the COVID-19 pandemic and over 50 home-less people used same for testing and isolation.
• Homeless Triage Center: The triage center is being moved to Kalihi.
• Point-in-Time Homeless Count: The PIT count's statewide results show relative stability in the number of homeless, with decreases in the number of homeless children and homeless families with children.
• Hawaii Housing Finance and Development Corporation (HHFDC): HHFDC received $100 million from the State Legis-lature to provide financial relief to residents at risk of homelessness due to COVID-19. Plans are to have an inter-mediary run the program beginning by Saturday 1 August 2020. The program will provide assistance over five months up to a maximum of $500 per month per household. The program is intended to assist roughly 34,000 peo-ple statewide impacted by the pandemic.
• Provisional Outdoor Screening and Triage (POST): The POST center is administered by HPD and provides a location to refer homeless people in need. The program has helped individuals transition from homelessness to being housed.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Services in Chinatown: Logue voiced concerns regarding homeless people being brought to Chinatown for services and then staying in Chinatown, and inquired about including homeless data from the Food Stamps office in the PIT count. Director Alexander noted that the Institute for Human Services (IHS) and similar facilities use the stabilization module where homeless receive services and are then connected to further services to transition into shelter, and further noted successes at the POST center. Morishige responded that IHS is looking at incorporating data from other offices in their work.
2. Homeless Concerns: Shubert-Kwock voiced concerns regarding homeless in Chinatown, stated that many homeless in Chinatown are resistant to services due to drug addiction, noted concerns regarding the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Office of the Public Defender, mentioned judges not convicting homeless, and advocated mandatory treatments. Morishige responded attempts are being made to increase the number of stabilization beds to transition more people to long-term housing, and noted other systemic changes such as combining service lines. Morishige and Director Alexander voiced support for stabilization beds and their effectiveness at bringing homeless to further services.
3. COVID-19: Armstrong inquired about testing for homeless people. Morishige responded that roughly 1000 home-less have been tested with only one testing positive throughout the State.
4. Mental Health Bill: Armstrong inquired about a bill passed in 2019 regarding mental health and its effect on home-lessness. Morishige responded that although funds were allocated to provide targeted outreach, there is difficulty moving cases to the court system. Director Alexander stated that there was a 19% decrease in homeless suffering from mental disorders.
5. Potential Increases: Ma inquired if the number of homeless will increase due to the financial impact of COVID-19. Director Alexander responded that there has been no evidence of increasing homelessness from COVID-19.
6. Homeless Prevention Bills: Director Alexander noted that there are various homelessness prevention bills.
7. Homeless Concerns (continued): A resident voiced concerns regarding increasing numbers of chronically homeless and voiced concerns regarding their negative impact on Chinatown, expressing doubt that permanent housing will alleviate the issue. Director Alexander noted that one out of four homeless in Chinatown are chronically homeless, the number of chronically homeless has decreased between years, and that more housing is needed for the Hous-ing First program. Morishige noted that chronic homeless-ness decreased 18% throughout the State in the last four years.
8. Small Businesses: Resident Butera inquired about programs to assist small businesses which are negatively impacted by homeless in Chinatown. Director Alexander noted the various Chinatown-exclusive programs which benefit Chi-natown and business owners therein, such as trash pickup services.
Presentation on Construction/Permitting for Wo Fat Building: No representative was present; no report was provided.
Resolution NB13-2020-007: Armstrong provided draft resolution, "Resolution recommending all police commissioner posi-tions become elected positions to be voted on by the public." Chair Lye opened the floor to discussion and action.
Armstrong moved to adopt the resolution:
RESOLVED, the Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board 13 requests the Honolulu City Council and its Corporation Council move to make the appointed volunteers serving on the Honolulu Police Commission elected positions by placing a resolution on the ballot for approval by no later than Election Day, 2 November 2021.
1. Board Power: Armstrong clarified that Neighborhood Board 13 is advisory in nature and that the resolution was intended to provide input to elected officials.
2. Charter: Ma stated that the Police Commission composition is dictated by the Honolulu Charter and inquired if the resolution would call for changing the Charter. Armstrong clarified that the resolution did not call for a specific means as the elected officials will need to take the action to enact such changes. Armstrong voiced concerns re-garding the lack of accountability in the Police Commission and advocated making the process of selecting commis-sioners more democratic. Chair Lye recounted the mechanisms for such changes to the Charter by the City Council.
The Motion WAS ADOPTED 5-1-1 (AYE: Armstrong, Kamoshida, Logue, Lye, and McDonald; NAY: Shubert-Kwock; ABSTAIN: Ma).
Resolution NB13-2020-008: Shubert-Kwock provided draft resolution, "Resolution recommending no additional homeless related facilities be located in the Chinatown District." Chair Lye opened the floor to discussion and action.
Shubert-Kwock moved to adopt the resolution.
1. COVID-19: Ma voiced concerns regarding COVID-19 and stated that the Board should avoid blanket statements as they may want leeway in the future to deal with the pandemic.
2. Details: Armstrong voiced concerns regarding the brief nature of the resolution and the lack of details in the resolu-tion, and noted agreement to Ma's comments.
3. Support: Logue voiced support for the resolution and noted that residents in Chinatown are opposed to homeless facilities in the community.
4. Resolution Writing: McDonald voiced support for the idea, but stated he was uncomfortable sending the resolution to elected officials in its current form and noted concerns regarding the lack of details.
5. Background Details: Shubert-Kwock stated that she included background details and information separate from the resolution. Logue voiced support for the current version of the resolution.
6. Homeless Services: A resident voiced concerns regarding the quantity of homeless services in Chinatown and Iwilei, how the two adjacent neighborhoods push homeless between each other, and advocated placing homeless services in other parts of O‘ahu.
7. ROL: Resident Caravalho advocated a petition to displace RoL, and voiced approval of the resolution in its current form.
The Motion WAS NOT ADOPTED 3-3-1 (AYE: Kamoshida, Logue, and Shubert-Kwock; NAY: McDonald, Armstrong, and Lye; ABSTAIN: Ma).
Shubert-Kwock departed at 8:52 p.m; six members remaining.
COMMUNITY CONCERNS AND REPORTS
Safe Haven: Greg Payton, Mental Health Kokua CEO, circulated a handout and outlined monthly statistics and information for the Punawai Rest Stop; there were 41,000 total visits for 2020 as of 30 June 2020. Funding for the security guard at Pauahi Hale has been discontinued. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. Security Guard: Chair Lye inquired if CARES Act funds could be used to hire a new security guard; Payton respond-ed that this was not clear. A resident stated that conditions were worse without a security guard and inquired if the City security guard program could be used. McDonald inquired about stationing HPD at the facility. Payton clarified that the security guard's role was to monitor restroom use.
Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART): Shawn Hamamoto summarized and circulated a handout available below as an Annex. For more information, please visit the HART website at www.honolulutransit.org, call the project hotline on (808) 566-2299, or email a question to email@example.com.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed:
1. HOLO card types: Logue inquired if persons now with transportation disability passes will receive a specific type of HOLO card from the rail station(s). Hamamoto noted that details are still being finalized but that he will pursue an answer.
2. Federal audit of HART: McDonald inquired if the federal audit is still underway during the pandemic. Hamamoto noted that he is not privy to information about the audit but that yes, according to the newspaper, the audit is ongo-ing.
3. Inclusivity of system fares: McDonald asked if the price of an all-day ticket for the bus will include transportation on rail. Hamamoto noted that the intention is to make it an inclusive system; details should be ironed out prior to opening.
Ma departed at 9:00 pm; five members remaining.
4. Station restroom availability: Armstrong inquired of the percentage of stations with restrooms. Hamamoto noted that all stations will have restrooms.
5. Flood zone mitigation: Caravalho suggested that the rail route from Kalihi to Ala Moana was in a flood zone and asked if HART intended to move the rail route inland. Hamamoto noted that he did not know but would find out.
6. Bus pass crossover to HOLO card: Higa inquired if one must obtain a HOLO card should a held bus pass not have ex-pired by the time rail service begins. Hamamoto noted that he would follow up on this.
NCO staff departed at 9:02 pm.
Chinatown Business & Community Association (CBCA): No representative was present; no verbal report was provided. A written report was timely submitted for the record and is presented below as an Annex. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chinatown Watch (CW): Fran Butera provided a written report available on https://chinatownwatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/C.Watch-NB13-report-7220.pdf and summarized below as an Annex. Also broached was the concept of a food truck model for distribution of prepared meals, which would permit River of Life—while pursuing an overall relocation plan—to continue to prepare food at its current Chinatown location while avoiding service of food within Chinatown and the ramifications of such, including littering and aberrant behavior that harms or community. Butera reiter-ated that part of the impetus for ChinatownWatch.com is to provide a means for policy-makers who do not visit, live in, or understand the area to experience the reality of what goes on therein. Butera reiterated that it is not the intent of CW to demonize certain people but rather to bear witness and provide a solid understanding of the situation at street level. For more information, please email email@example.com.
Questions, comments, and concerns followed: River of Life parameters for service: McDonald asked if a topless woman had indeed been served a meal; Butera confirmed this.
APPROVAL OF REGULAR MEETING MINUTES OF NB 13 FROM 4 JUNE 2020
Armstrong moved to approve the June 2020 draft minutes as distributed. As an administrative matter Lye moved to cor-rect the draft minutes to reflect items noted as an annex below. The motion to correct the draft minutes was adopted 5-0-0 (Aye: Armstrong, Kamoshida, Logue, Lye, McDonald; Nay: None; Abstain: None). With implicit intent of the deciding vote by the Chair, the motion to approve the corrected draft minutes was adopted 5-0-0 (Aye: Armstrong, Kamoshida, Logue, Lye, McDonald; Nay: None; Abstain: None).
BOARD BUSINESS AND REPORTS
Chair's report: Hearings for outstanding complaints against NB 13 and subsets of the members thereof are currently sched-uled to begin on Monday 27 July 2020 at 6:30 pm in the Kap lama Hale floor 1 conference room, 925 Dillingham Boulevard, Honolulu, HI 96817. All Board members were encouraged to participate and fully defend against accusations of wrongdo-ing.
Lye expressed gratitude for the assistance of the members of the Board during the meeting, that he looks forward to helping facilitate accomplishment of the goals set by Board during the remainder of the term, and advised Members to review their listed contact information and update such as necessary with NCO.
Treasurer's Report: No new data were available.
Board Members' Concerns: None.
Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization (OahuMPO): No delegate to attend on behalf of the Board has been assigned for this term; this may be pursued during a subsequent meeting.
• Next Meeting: The next regular meeting of the Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board 13 is scheduled for Thursday 6 August 2020 at Hawaii Pacific University, 1 Aloha Tower Drive, Multi-Purpose Room 3 at 6:00 pm.
• Neighborhood Citizen Patrol: The Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Citizen Patrol departs each Tuesday even-ing at 8:00 pm from the Diamond Head Tower lobby of Kukui Plaza. Please bring a friend, join the patrol, and help identify areas of concern within our Downtown-Chinatown community.
• ‘ lelo: Rebroadcasts of Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board 13 meetings are scheduled on ‘ lelo chan-nel 49 for every third Thursday at 9:00 pm, as well as 6:00 am on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month. An archive of past meetings may be found on http://olelo.org/olelonet/ by searching on .
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 9:12 pm.
Submitted by Jackson Coley, Public Relations Assistant
Reviewed by Naomi Hanohano, Neighborhood Assistant
Finalized by Kevin Lye, Chair
Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART):
Key Activities for July 2020
As construction continues and the rail project moves towards interim service, HART has taken delivery of Train #14, which is now in the Maintenance and Storage Facility and Rail Operations Center in Waipahu. Interim service would utilize a fleet of four 4-car trains. The City's Department of Transportation Services (DTS) will be in charge of operating and maintaining the rail system along with TheBus and TheHandi-Van.
Interim service would include nine stations from Kapolei near the Kroc Center, through Waipahu, Pearl City and Aiea, and include stops serving UH West Oahu, Leeward Community College, Pearlridge Mall and the Aloha Stadium.
The introductory passenger service will give HART and DTS staff and the general public the opportunity to get to know and learn the rail system, the stations, their locations and amenities, access to the stations and boarding areas and how to ride and use the fully automat-ed, driverless system. A smart card swiping system, the HOLO card will be utilized and needed to ride the train. No cash ticketing will be available so everyone would need a HOLO card to ride.
The full 20-mile, 21 station rail system is over 56% complete. Rail stations on the west side are 97% completed. The Core Systems, which includes the train vehicles, controls and communications equipment, is 68% completed. Kamehameha Highway resurfacing is 98% competed with intersection, guard rail and bus shelter work to go. The Airport Guideway and Stations segment from the Halawa station at Aloha Stadium to the Kahauiki station at the Middle Street Transit Center is 65% completed, with 67% of the guideway, 81% of shafts, 73% of the columns and 53% of the guideway spans completed.
In the City Center, utility relocation work to make way for the guideway and station structures is moving forward with Dillingham Boule-vard as the immediate focus of both day and night activities. Controlled access means one east-bound and one west-bound lane will be opened to traffic on Dillingham. Work also continues in the Chinatown/Downtown area along Nimitz Boulevard, as well as work through Kakaako and Ala Moana along portions of Halekauwila, Queen and Kona streets.
Chinatown Business & Community Association (CBCA):
We held our monthly CBCA Meeting on 9 June 2020 at 10 am at the Golden Palace restaurant. Major Glenn Hayashi, our District 1 Commander, attended along with other members. We discussed critical law enforcement and public safety issues in Chinatown made worse by an influx of new homeless with bad issues and how HPD can provide as much assistance as possible. CBCA is seeking support from Chinatown stakeholders and area legislators to support curtailing the retail liquor sales hours to 5 pm instead of midnight in China-town's Hotel, Maunakea, and Pauahi corridor where we have the most 911 calls and violence due to drunkenness and fights. We will have our next CBCA Chinatown Meeting on 14 July 2020.
Chinatown Watch (CW):
River of Life Feeding Operation Concentrates Homeless Issues in Chinatown, Derails Community's Recovery
During the COVID shutdown, River of Life (RoL) closed its dining room and began feeding people by take-out only. The unintended con-sequence has been to attract even more homeless people to Chinatown, and further enable service-resistant homeless individuals to live in Chinatown's public spaces without sanitation. Shops trying to reopen after the shutdown face continuing public health & safety risks from the mentally ill and substance-addicted homeless people that RoL feeds. The unsanitary and dangerous conditions discourage the normal street life that our small businesses need to recover from the pandemic. RoL does not have the manpower to clean up all their guests' trash or stop them from relieving themselves in public or causing disturbances throughout Chinatown. The costs of their guests' adverse impacts are borne by Chinatown's workers, property owners and residents, not by RoL or their guests. RoL's worthy mission of feeding the hungry does not justify the damage done to our community.
Proposed Solutions for River of Life
1) Relocate ROL's food service to the City's Iwilei hub, which is DESIGNED to serve many vulnerable and unstable people in a comprehensive setting.
2) Adopt the Food Truck model. Prepare meals in Chinatown but serve all food elsewhere. Rotate to different sites so as not to create or enable an entrenched homeless population in a single location, as happened in Chinatown.
Ongoing Issues with Blight & Crime, June 2020
The full report includes a sample of incidents posted to ChinatownWatch.com during the month of June 2020. These posts illustrate our neighborhood's daily struggles with homeless and mentally ill and substance addicted individuals on our streets.
The full report lists steps that City administrators and concerned citizens can take now to improve conditions in Chinatown.
Mayor Announces Initiatives to Revitalize Chinatown
Media outlets reported that the Caldwell administration is taking steps to clean and beautify Chinatown and lift struggling businesses. Some of these steps are new; others are continuations of citizen-led initiatives. We are pleased that the Mayor seems to have listened to the community, as we have been begging for many of these improvements for years. However, Chinatown's most serious problem continues to be its entrenched and growing homeless population.
Chinatown will not heal as long as the homeless magnets and their clients, the irresponsible liquor stores and open drug trade define our neighborhood. We call on the Caldwell administration to truly commit to Chinatown revitalization by
• Relocating all homeless services and their clients to the City's Iwilei complex or other suitable setting designed to support them
• Revoking the licenses of liquor stores that sell alcohol to homeless & mentally ill addicts
• Funding private security for the entire Downtown Chinatown district
Full Report Available Online
Please see the full July 2020 report and archived past reports at https://chinatownwatch.com/reports/.
APPROVAL OF REGULAR MEETING MINUTES OF NB 13 FROM 4 JUNE 2020
Adopted corrections to draft minutes:
• Amend all misspellings or truncations of Member Shubert-Kwock's name.
• Within Senator Rhoads' report, strike the word dollars following the figure $401,000.
• Within the SHADE presentation, strike the first instance of a duplicated expression of concern by Member Shubert-Kwock about illegal activity near the Wo Fat building.
• Within Councilmember Fukunaga's report, make amendments to her responses as noted within her printed memorandum to NB 13 of 2 July 2020.
• Within Community Concerns and Reports, revise the pointer to the annexed Chinatown Watch report to indicate that the annex in which the report is located is below the main body of the minutes.
• Within Public Concerns, strike the reference to a handout circulated by CID and add, within CID subsection Proposed IHS Triage Center, notice of a joint letter being authored by CID and other organizations.
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