After all lanes on Farrington Highway were closed following a fatal crash near the intersection of Milikami Street and Farrington Highway, and traffic continued to back up past Kahe Point last month, Waianae residents sat in traffic for hours. Without a secondary emergency access road open, residents faced yet another overly burdensome commute and dangerous commute.


“It is unacceptable that taxpayers paid to have these roads built, but can’t use them in an emergency that closes all lanes of traffic on the only road in and out of the Leeward Coast. The City Administration needs to come up with solutions to this problem.” Councilmember Pine said.


However, community, City and State officials had planned a Waianae Coast Emergency Access Road (WCEAR), a traffic mitigation tool to be utilized during emergencies when there would be long delays of transit along Farrington Highway.  Councilmember Kymberly Marcos Pine, in response, introduced Resolution 15-108, which requests the City Administration to set forth and inform the public on those conditions under which the Waianae Coast Emergency Access Road will be opened and identify and implement improvements to more efficiently open the road during emergencies.


“We the Residents of the Coast need the support on this issue and we hope the parties involved will help us and agree to open and keep these roads to assist us,” said Richard Landford, Nanakuli-Maili Neighborhood Board Member and Chair of the Neighborhood Board’s Transportation Committee.


Councilmember Pine’s Resolution was adopted at the May 6th Council meeting and also calls upon the City to be introducing a resolution calling for the City Administration to develop signage along the route and renegotiate the terms of licenses with private landowners upon whose land the Waianae Coast Emergency Access Road lies, to include the use of the road during peak traffic delays. The recommended deadline for the City to produce this comprehensive plan is July 31, 2015.

It is a reality that the Honolulu Zoo is in need of funding to support its exhibits and facilities.

Right now, we are at the realization that the City has not invested over the years properly into our zoo facility.  With an accreditation inspection approaching in November 2015, the Honolulu Zoo is concerned with maintaining their accreditation and reputation as a landmark in our state.


“The public has demanded that we continue to invest at a higher level in our Zoo.  However, the reality is that we simply can’t afford it and it is time that we begin looking at other options of how we can improve the zoo,” said Councilmember Pine.


Councilmember Pine is currently working on Bill 25, which will allow for limited sponsorship of Honolulu Zoo exhibits or facilities.  This will give donors the opportunity to give back to our zoo, and in return we thank them by honoring their names on small plaques throughout certain exhibits.  Bill 25 CD 1 will be discussed at the upcoming Budget committee on July 22, 2015.  To offer your support and testimony, feel free to attend this meeting or email kmpine@honolulu.gov

Councilmember Kymberly Marcos Pine partnered with the Kapolei Chamber of Commerce to bring a unique job and career fair to West O’ahu – one that focuses on “Connecting Leeward residents with Leeward Jobs”. The 3rd Annual Hire Leeward Job and Career Fair took place on March 24, 2015, (Tuesday) at the University of Hawai’i – West O’ahu campus from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.


With a theme of “Connecting Leeward Residents with Leeward Jobs”, the Fair hosted over 70 businesses offering Leeward-based job opportunities. There were free business and personal development seminars to give attendees new skills and tools for their career development path.  Businesses and organizations offered many opportunities from a wide range of industries including: healthcare, food service, hospitality, retail, and administrative, as well as trade apprenticeships.


As an example, Leonard Smith can now sleep in 2 hours more than he used to, before getting up for work every day.  Ever since he switched his job and cut his commute time job by 85%, he looks forward to spending quality time each morning with his wife and kids, rather than sitting in gruesome traffic.  Leonard has been with U.S. VETS – Barbers Point for the past 3 years. Prior to this, he was spending long hours driving to his job in town. With the long commute time and traffic issues, driving to work, according to him, became a bear.  He consciously began searching for employment that was closer to home in order to alleviate his commute time, thus improving his quality time with his family.




Leonard Smith (right) – Leeward resident, was featured on Hawaii News Now’s Sunrise show, where he recently shared his testimony about reducing his morning commute by finding a job closer to home.

A report released yesterday by the City & County of Honolulu’s Emergency Services Department (HESD) found that patient care and ambulance response times in Leeward Oahu could improve, and costs could decrease if the City obtained a second private ambulance service provider.  From September – October 2013, the City’s current private ambulance contractor turned down 30-40% of requested calls for services in West Oahu.


“With only one City-run ambulance serving Leeward residents, we depend on the City’s private ambulance provider to provide dedicated services.  Turning down 30-40% of requested calls puts our residents at a greater risk of death or prolonged injury and is unacceptable,” said Councilmember Pine.


The subject of a second private ambulance service provider was initially raised in a City Council Resolution co-authored by Councilmember Pine with Councilmember Ron Menor.  Adopted by the Council in response to the deficiency of emergency services in West Oahu following the December 2012 closure of St. Francis Medical Center in Ewa Beach, the Resolution directed the HSED to evaluate the need for a second private ambulance service provider to provide back-up call services.


“After reviewing HESD’s report, I continue to welcome the entrance of a second private ambulance provider and believe that another private provider would increase patient access to care and improve service to Leeward residents,” Councilmember Pine added.


According to the Resolution, the report was due to City Council and public on August 9, 2013. The report was delivered to the Council on December 16, 2013. Members of the public can view it online via the City’s Docushare System:



Keywords: bws, board of water supply, backbilling, water bill, city council


Today, concerned testifiers shared their Board of Water Supply back-billing stories before the Executive Matters and Legal Affairs Committee at the City Council today.  Councilmember Kymberly Marcos Pine introduced a Charter Amendment that would prohibit the Board of Water Supply from continuing to back billing ratepayers, a practice that has been banned or regulated in many other states and jurisdictions throughout the country.


“I was recently contacted by the family of a 90-year-old man who received a water bill for over $7000. His monthly bill is normally around $200. The Board of Water Supply continued to bill for the last six months and told him that he has to pay the amount or have his water shut off” Councilmember Pine said. This man along with other testifiers will have the opportunity to share their stories today.


“Nearly 4 out of 5 of the Honolulu Board of Water Supply’s roughly 166,000 customers received at least one bill between January and September…” from today’s article in the Honolulu Star Advertiser by Gordon Pang:



Today at City Council, the Intergovernmental Affairs and Human Services Committee unanimously voted to move an agreement between the City and County of Honolulu (City) and the Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL) to allow for limited construction on vacant parcels adjacent to Varona Village in Ewa and at the former Navy drum site in Waiawa, forward to the Council for consideration at the August 7, 2013 Council Meeting.


The agreement will enable DHHL to move forward with design to construction of the planned Ku’alakai Parkway extension, to extend Ku’alakai Parkway from Kapolei Parkway to Roosevelt Avenue. DHHL does not have immediate plans to develop their acquired land parcel, but according to the resolution, the departmentwill work with neighboring landowners and resident communities, including the Varona Villages community to ensure residents remain informed of improvements to the adjacent vacant land.


“As a descendant of plantation workers in Ewa, I am committed to ensuring Varona Village residents remain informed of any development on the vacant property adjacent to their residences. As our community continues to grow, we must ensure that we reach out to our residents to keep them informed,” Councilmember Pine said.

Concerned that Oahu residents are still without an Ewa emergency room or a hospital since the closure of Hawaii Medical Center-West (HMC-West) in 2011, two City Councilmembers hosted a briefing with hospital officials and emergency responders, who reported the availability of emergency rooms in the Ewa region.


“While we welcome the news that Queens Medical Center will reopen the closed Hawaii Medical Center-West in 2014, it will be more than two years that my community has been without a hospital or an emergency room. Many of my Ewa Beach and Kapolei residents continue to worry about their emergency health needs and the availability of these essential emergency services.  We need to make sure everything is being done to ensure that lives are being saved now,” said Councilmember Pine.


Prior to the December 2011 closing, the HMC-West Emergency Room was the second busiest emergency room on the island.


HMC-West’s closure has left a devastating and lasting impact on the lives of many Leeward and Central Oahu residents, and has had the disproportionate impact of straining services in other nearby communities.  In addition, many residents are still reeling from the loss of their jobs, their homes, their savings and their self-esteem.


Following HMC-West’s closure in late 2011, Councilmember Pine hosted an emergency Town Hall on February 9, 2012 to discuss the impact of the hospital closure with State and City officials, Oahu’s emergency service providers, and the public.