Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the most-asked questions submitted to his office staff.
Q: I'm considering buying a home that I'd like to turn into a bed-and-breakfast. Which county office can I contact to get information on the process to apply for a B&B permit?
A: Anyone with questions about permits for short-term rental homes or bed-and-breakfasts can call the Maui County Planning Department's Current Planning Division at 270-8205 or visit the county website at www.mauicounty.gov/Planning and select a link under the "Hot Topics" header. There you will find links to information about both types of permits.
Q: This is something I've always wondered about: Do planning commission members get paid?
A: No. Members of county boards, councils, commissions and committees provide volunteer service. Members serve terms of two to five years, and help county government function more efficiently by reviewing policies, listening to public testimony and making recommendations. A few other examples of county boards and commissions include the Animal Control Board, the Board of Water Supply, the Cost of Government Commission, the Fire and Public Safety Commission, the Liquor Control Commission, the Police Commission, the newly formed Public Works Commission and the Real Property Tax Review Board. Applications are being taken now for open seats, and are available online at www.mauicounty.gov/Boards or from my office on the ninth floor of the County Building. Deadline to apply is Dec. 31. Questions may be directed to my office at 270-7855.
Q: Is it required for trucks carrying loose items to be covered? Much of roadside rubbish seems to be blown off of trucks carrying uncovered items or loads.
A: According to both the Maui County Code and the Hawaii Revised Statutes, drivers are responsible for ensuring that their load is tied down or covered properly, and that loose material from the load cannot escape into the air or onto the road. Police cite violators under state law, specifically HRS 291C-131. To read the details on requirements and penalties, read the posting on my blog at www.mauicounty.gov/Mayor and click on "Mayor's Update" on the left. Keeping loads covered not only helps reduce the amount of debris and litter on the road, it also helps keep other drivers safe from flying objects, sand, dirt and other projectiles that could potentially cause an accident.
* Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa via email: AskTheMayor@mauicounty.gov, phone: 270-7855 or mail: 200 S. High Street, ninth floor, Wailuku 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the "Ask the Mayor" column.