Families facing eviction from Kahana Valley can stay for now - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Families facing eviction from Kahana Valley can stay for now

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Six families facing eviction from their homes in Kahana Valley Park can breathe a sign of relief for now.

The state announced Wednesday it will not take any action to evict the families who are living at the park without residential leases, while the Legislature considers a resolution to address the issue.

Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairperson Laura H. Thielen says the state has been working with legislators to identify the solutions that would meet the needs of the families.

"We trust the Legislature will continue to respect the basic foundation of the public's right to access state parks, keep residential areas separated from the public areas and make Kahana Valley a public park that welcomes and enriches all residents and visitors of Hawaii," said Thielen.

DLNR had offered to relocate the six families to the residential area of the park but the offer was refused.

Last month, the families received eviction notices from the state.

The DLNR says the state purchased Kahana in 1970 in hopes of preserving the natural and cultural landscape. It issued residential permits to 31 families, but says the law doesn't allow for any other leases in the public park.

The Legislature is asked to take up the issue in January 2009.

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