Residents Blast State Homeless Project - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Residents Blast State Homeless Project

Albert Deleconio Albert Deleconio

By Mari-Ela David

MAILI (KHNL) - Fed-up residents say illegal homeless camps along Waianae's coast are a reflection of the state's failure to tackle the island's homeless problem.

"There's drug dealing going on, prostitution, drunks, children being abused, spouses being abused, dogs are running wild," says Sea Country resident Albert Deleconio.

With Waianae's homeless shelter at near capacity, the state has recognized the need for transitional housing, and has plans to transform empty land in Maili into a transitional village.

Critics say the state has a history of not maintaining low-income projects, and fear the parcel will only end up having the same fate as leeward beaches.

Some opposition lies in Sea Country where some residents are worried the affordable rental project will hurt their property value.

"They become slums after a couple years and everybody's afraid that's what going to happen on this side also," says Deleconio.

The 90 acre project is close to Sea Country and calls for 80 transitional housing units, with a shelter for abused or neglected kids plus 240 affordable rental units.

The project is in two phases. Phase one is the 80-unit transitional village with the foster shelter. Phase two is the 240 affordable homes.

State leaders say only phase one would be public housing, with the completion date set for September of next year.

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