The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) will present a draft management plan for ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u Natural Area Reserve (NAR) at the Wednesday, Oct. 20, meeting of the ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u NAR/Keone‘o‘io Advisory Group. The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Lokelani Intermediate School Cafeteria in Kihei.
A 30-day public comment period will follow the meeting, and a public open house-style informational meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 3, mid-way through the comment period. The open house informational meeting, also at Lokelani Intermediate Cafeteria at 6:30 p.m., is scheduled to answer questions or clarify information contained in the draft plan prior to the end of the public comment period.
In 2008, a diverse and representative community and government working group began the process of developing a management plan for ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u Natural Area Reserve. The plan they envisioned will preserve and protect the reserve’s unique natural and cultural heritage by addressing both new and long-standing issues well into the future.
Copies of the draft management plan will be available at both meetings, and also at the Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) office at 54 South High St., room 101, in Wailuku. It will also be available online after the October meeting at http://hawaii.gov/dlnr/dofaw/nars/reserves/maui/ahihikinau.
“This plan is a call to action to protect and preserve one of Maui’s most beautiful and loved places, ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u Natural Area Reserve,” said DLNR Maui NARS specialist William Evanson. “The plan contains historical, management and biological information, describes the current status and condition of the reserve, identifies threats to the natural and cultural resources found there, and suggests actions that both welcome people and protect what is fragile and rare,” explained Evanson.
The purpose of this document is to describe the management actions needed to “preserve, protect, and enhance” the biological and cultural resources of ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u Natural Area Reserve for current and future generations. It also acts as an institutional memory of past actions and a description of the status of resources and management today that can serve as a baseline of knowledge and comparison in the future.
The draft plan will be improved by input from the community. Public review and comment is open from Oct. 20 to Nov. 20. Send comments via mail to: Division of Forestry and Wildlife, Natural Area Reserve System, 1151 Punchbowl Street, Room 325, Honolulu, HI 96813. Fax to (808) 587-0064 or email firstname.lastname@example.org'>email@example.com.
Anyone requiring special assistance or auxiliary aids or services to participate in the public hearing process (i.e. sign language interpreter, wheelchair accessibility, or parking designated for the disabled) should contact Bill Evanson of the DLNR DOFAW at (808) 264-9325 72 hours prior to the meeting so that arrangement can be made.
Learn more about the reserve and how you can invest in the future of this unique Hawaiian place at http://hawaii.gov/dlnr/dofaw/nars/reserves/maui/ahihikinau.