"The funding approved by the Legislature includes $600 million for the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands to develop a multi-pronged approach to eliminating its waitlist. According to state Rep. David Tarnas, who represents North and South Kohala and North Kona, House Bill 2511 will also help DHHL build more homes, buy more land and provide rental and mortgage assistance to Native Hawaiians on the waitlist."
“This project has been a priority of mine for over 25 years, going back to my first time serving as state representative from 1994-1998,” State Rep. David Tarnas, D-North Kohala, South Kohala and North Kona, who is chairman of the House Committee on Water and Land, said in a statement.
“I am grateful to the governor for releasing the funds for this very important project. Now Hawaii County will be able to move forward and develop a comprehensive plan and design for a wastewater collection system for the Puako community,” he said. “My goal in securing these public funds is to protect the water quality and coral reefs of the Puako nearshore area, which are of great value to our community.”
“With this significant investment of public funds, this project will help the Department of Water Supply, the County of Hawai‘i, and the State of Hawai‘i achieve their mutual goal of a more sustainable and resilient future,” said Rep. David Tarnas (House District 7 – North Kona, North Kohala, South Kohala), in a news release announcing the Thursday, March 10 allocation. “I am grateful to be at the legislature to work with Sen. Lorraine Inouye to secure these funds.”
“We recognize the paramount importance of Mauna Kea and the very serious responsibility we have to manage this public trust resource, and we acknowledge the very strong opinions on all sides of this issue,” Tarnas said. “The House is seeking a path forward that provides a substantive role for Native Hawaiians in decision-making about the management of Mauna Kea and provides a stable future for Mauna Kea.”
“It’s a challenging bill,” said committee chair Rep. David Tarnas from Hawaiʻi island. “But, I think we do need to continue the discussion on it. The area representatives really would like to move forward and figure out some answers to these questions and also a way to make it fair to the state.”