DOBOR’s Underwood Willing to Break the Law to Push His Public Lands Privatization Agenda?

Underwood Deliberately Misleads Public About His Privatization Push

DOBOR's Ed Underwood made it clear, once again, at an invitees-only meeting yesterday, that he will do whatever it takes to push for public lands privatization, even if it means breaking Hawaii State law.  Act 197 is clear about the requirement for the responsible disposition of DOBOR land (public land): “[disposition] shall be consistent with the purpose for which the land was set aside by the governor pursuant to section 171‑11. Permissible uses may include any use that will complement or support the ocean-recreation or maritime activities of state boating facilities.”

We're not sure how wedding chapels and Ferris wheels fit into any interpretation of this law.   There are more than 1,000 boats moored in the vicinity of the public lands in question, and, clearly, wedding chapels and Ferris wheels might not best serve the interests of boaters in the area -- unless, of course, there was a sudden run on weddings in the harbor environs followed by a honeymoon rush to the Ferris wheel amusement park that was proposed at the one-time Texaco fuel dock property.

Underwood has been using every slight-of-hand to convince the choir that his need to privatize public lands has merit.  So far, he's been caught lying to the public (in writing), blessing the lying on UIPA requests for information (a violation of the State's Sunshine Law), lying to legislators (on record), and continuously using misleading spreadsheet numbers to justify his privatization cause.

In any normally functioning government, where honest people ask real questions, Mr. Underwood would have long ago been furloughed. Remarkably, we don't do that in Hawaii.  We seem to consistently reward incompetence and failure.  Quick case in point is Laura Thielen, past Chair of the DLNR -- having, almost single-handedly, created an unmitigated disaster at the DLNR, she is then elected to the Senate.  We love failure and incompetence here, but we may not like it much longer.

Certain legislators and agency heads, like Underwood and DLNR Chair Case, have been working hard to fabricate rationale for taking the public's land and assets and handing them over to private, for-profit, interests.   This may not end well for the public, especially the working-class public in Hawaii.

If this might concern you, you may want to sign the petition below:

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Seth johnson
Seth johnson
5 years ago

Please don’t let more public land be taken away from us . Save something please !! Thank you

Alan Pedersen Manele Bay
Alan Pedersen Manele Bay
5 years ago

Get rid of Underwood and all the corrupt and deceitful district managers in DLNR boating, The good old boy club needs to go