Representative Tarnas also expressed his appreciation: “I am grateful that DLNR’s proposal for the Kohala Mountain Watershed was funded by the Water SMART program. Leveraging State funding to secure federal funding is an important strategy for our State agencies to increase support for these important programs. Protecting watersheds does protect drinking water supplies. Every community in the Kohala mountain watershed, which uses public drinking water, should be grateful for this support!”
“By establishing this deep monitoring well in the Waimea aquifer, we are filling a significant data gap,” said State Representative David Tarnas. “With this new deep monitoring well, the water managers at DLNR’s Commission on Water Resource Management can gather the necessary information to be able to manage the use of this aquifer and ensure a sustainable drinking water supply. This is a very positive development for all residents in our region.”
Rep. Tarnas is the Chair of the House Land and Water Committee and echoed the theme of community involvement. “So, the power comes from the people, that’s an old saying and it’s very true. I’m a firm believer that the legislative process is a team process and it’s involving the community, advocacy organizations, private businesses, non-governmental organizations, all of them bringing their mana’o to the table.”
Tarnas said the first funding the legislature appropriated for the Hololmua: Marine 30X30 initiative was specifically for community engagement. “The legislature really believed, and I think we showed through that appropriation, our priority was to make sure that the community is aware and involved. It’s essential that we include those who utilize the resources.”
Candidates for the Hawaii County Council and state Legislature hoping to represent North Kohala will meet voters during an in-person forum set for Wednesday at the Kohala Village HUB Barn in Hawi.
There to answer questions from voters from 4 to 6 p.m. will be Tim Richards (D) and Nicholas Tancheff (R) running for state Senate, District 4; Makai Freitas (D), Monique Cobb Adams Perreira (R), and David Tarnas (D) running to represent state House District 8; and Jeff Coakley, Cindy Evans and Chris Toafili running nonpartisan for County Council, District 9.
The forum is sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Hawaii County, Sustainable Kohala, and the Kohala Village HUB. It will be moderated by Kohala Mountain News editor Maureen Garry.
The League of Women Voters of Hawaii County has an online voter guide at www.vote411.org. There, citizens can preview their ballot and get information about all the candidates.