Governor and Mayor Wrestle Over Homeless Dilemma - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Governor and Mayor Wrestle Over Homeless Dilemma

Tent villages like this one dot the Waianae Coast. Tent villages like this one dot the Waianae Coast.
Mayor Mufi Hannemann Mayor Mufi Hannemann
Governor Linda Lingle Governor Linda Lingle
John Turner enjoys a day at the park with his son.  They want something done about growing homeless camps in Waianae. John Turner enjoys a day at the park with his son. They want something done about growing homeless camps in Waianae.

July 1, 2006 10:35 PM

by Stephen Florino

(KHNL) - Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann says no more delays.

No more procrastination.

Now is the time to start cleaning up Oahu's Leeward Coast.

"If we don't set deadlines, it will never get done," said Hannemann. "The community is tired of waiting. Tired of meetings. They want action."

The city plans to clean the parks and beaches along the coast starting in August. It would force the many homeless people living there to move, which is why the state doesn't fully support the plan.

The state is in the process of building emergency transitional housing, but say it probably won't be ready until December.

"Our focus is on the community and the people on the Leeward Coast," said Gov. Linda Lingle. "We're gonna work at this every day, and give it our best effort."

Hannemann says with the city doing its job by cleaning the beaches and parks, it'll push the state to work quicker on a problem they've known about for years.

"With government, if you don't hold their feet to the fire, nothing happens," said Hannemann.

The city plans to clean Waianae District Park first, because Hannemann says there's no homeless people there. Crews will then work their way around the coastline.

Both Hannemann and Lingle agree that it'll take a cooperative effort by the state, city, and community, to come to a solution for the homeless.

"It's important for us to work together," said Lingle. "We're all focused to helping the people on the Leeward Coast."

The state is meeting with the military next week, to look at sites on Kalaeloa.

Lingle and Hannemann plan to meet in early July, to talk about their respective plans.

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