Q: Can you tell me if there is an option to pay our water bills over the phone or online using a credit card? I was looking online but it only gives you an option for automatic payments from a bank account.
A: For now, the automatic bill-pay is the only way to pay electronically for your water and sewer bill, although other online options may be available as soon as next month. Customers should be aware that while the current auto-pay feature is free, payments made by credit card, debit card or electronic check usually incur administrative fees charged by the vendor that have to be passed on to the customer. That being said, another convenient option is to drop off your payment at the Maui County Business Resource Center at the Maui Mall, instead of coming up to the County Building or mailing the payment.
Q: What is the effective date of the new smoking ban at county parks and beaches, and who is responsible for enforcing it?
A: The tobacco ban, which includes smoking, went into effect as soon as the new ordinance was signed into law on April 22, 2014. It will be enforced by county park rangers and by Maui police officers as needed; however, due to the nature of open spaces such as beaches, parks and the county golf course, this law will require the public to be self-enforcing to some degree. Just like when the state law was passed in 2006 banning smoking in arenas, stadiums, amphitheaters or within 20 feet of any public building entrance, this new law will take time for the public to adjust to a change in the "social norm." For more information on the new law, visit www.mauicounty.gov/mayor and click on "Mayor's Update."
Q: Who is responsible for the code enforcement of overgrown sidewalks? I'm attaching two photos of a sidewalk in Lahaina that is not passable due to the large weeds and shrubbery that have taken over.
A: The county's Department of Public Works Highways Division will handle complaints regarding sidewalks with vegetation that has not been properly maintained by the property owner. You can submit a complaint online by making a "Request for Service" at www.mauicounty.gov/RFS. The system will ask you for the location of the sidewalk in question, and other details that will help staff follow up on your complaint.
* Want to Ask the Mayor? Submit your Maui County related questions to Mayor Alan Arakawa by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 270-7855 or by mail at 200 S. High St., ninth floor, Wailuku 96793. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the "Ask the Mayor" column; to request a personal response to a concern, email email@example.com.