Hāʻena Community based Subsistence Fishing Area Rules Granted a Public Hearing.

An impressive 48+ individuals and organizations submitted written testimony to support the BLNR’s appointment of a hearing on the Hāʻena Community Based Subsistence Fishing Area Rules (CBSFA Rules) and to have them heard on the north shore of Kauaʻi.

To impress upon the BLNR further Presley Wann, President of the Hui Makaʻāinana o Makana (of Hāʻena), flew in that morning to give a very thoughtful testimony of his family’s connection to Hāʻena, the hard work of the community fishing committee, the Hui’s prior leadership and those whom have passed on waiting for these rules to see the light of day. To bolster his testimony even further members and traditional practitioners of the communities of Miloliʻi, Ho’okena (Hawaiʻi), ‘Ewa (Oʻahu) and Maunalei (Lānaʻi) personally waited through the first 2.5 hours of other BLNR issues to make their voices heard. Supporters of community efforts also came out in good numbers including the Directors and staff of the Hawaiʻi Nature Conservancy, Conservation International’s Hawaiʻi Fish Trust and KUA.

WHAT THE RULES ARE REALLY ABOUT:

A poignant theme floated in the air and in the testimony that was beyond the dry language set forth in the Hāʻena CBSFA Rules and that was the children and future generations for whom the rules were for. Our communities are taking steps to provide assurance to future generations that there will be fish in Na Kai ‘Ewalu (Hawaiʻi’s 8 oceans) to feed them. This theme was captured in the testimony of young Hoku Subiono, of Kua O Ka Lā Charter School and participant in the Paʻa Pono Miloliʻi’s ʻōpelu project. He not only supported Hāʻena but expressed his community’s desire to see the same thing happen at home.

BLNR Board Member Thomas Oi expressed great pride for what he heard and shed a depth of tears that nobody had expected. When the unanimous decision to grant a hearing was made a palpable positive energy arose in the room. Some people cried. Some had waited some 20 years to hear it…

BUT NOW THE WORK REALLY BEGINS.

A date has not been set for a hearing, however, the outcome of this meeting gives great assurance that it will happen soon. We are hoping on an August-September 2014 date.

If you are interested in learning more about the Hāʻena CBSFA and other efforts please e-mail info@kuahawaii.org

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