Lawmakers seek solutions for Hawaii's disappearing beaches - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Lawmakers seek solutions for Hawaii's disappearing beaches

Erosion at Kailua Beach Erosion at Kailua Beach
By CATHY BUSSEWITZ
Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) - More than 13 miles of Hawaii beaches have been lost to erosion in the last century and lawmakers are tackling the problem.

A report by the U.S. Geological Survey says 70 percent of Hawaii beaches are undergoing chronic erosion.

Senate President Donna Mercado Kim says restoring beaches is one of the most important issues that the Hawaii Legislature should tackle. She says sea walls and buildings that are too close to the shore are contributing to the problem. If Hawaii's beaches disappear that could hurt the state's economy and environment.

A bill now in the Senate would set aside part of the transient accommodation tax to help fund beach restoration. Kim says she's hoping for $3 million to $5 million per year.

A Senate panel is debating the bill Monday.

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