Re-Declare Your Property Tax Status or Lose Your Exemption

k9706225The Maui County Property Tax office has “reset” their database and is requiring that all property owners, regardless whether or not they have already declared their occupancy status, to do it again by year’s end. Failure to do refile your applicaiton will result in a loss of owner occupied status, and result in a higher tax basis for the next tax year. There is no forgiveness for late filing, and you will have to wait until the next tax year to see a change in your rate.

Maui County offers a $200,000 property value discount according to their website article. Their website explains:

“For example, if you own a house and lot valued at $550,000 and are eligible for a single home exemption of $200,000, your net taxable value will be $350,000. This figure is divided by 1,000 then multiplied by the applicable tax rate, which is set by the County Council, to determine the taxes owed.’

So, according to  Maui County’s  2015 Tax Schedule, the category of “Residential” pays $5.40 per thousand dollars of assessed value where as the  “Homeowner” category only pays $2.75 per thousand.  Non-owner occupants then, pay a 96% increase over the “Homeowner” category.

So, don’t delay! You could avoid lines by sending a certified letter (return receipt advised) with the “Claim For Home Exemption” form enclosed. Or you can visit the Maui County Tax center at the Maui Mall (the same office as the DMV) pull a number, and wait your turn.

To make your wait in line less painful, keep in mind that Maui County property tax rates are a real deal as compared to Seattle and other areas on the mainland. Now relax. You won’t have to do this again. Well, maybe not until next year.

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Lawn Picks Raise Red Flags on Littering and Safety in Waimahaihai

by Kevin Curry

The Fine Print Shows It's Just Lawn Spam

The Fine Print Shows A Commercial Website

Waimahaihai District streets are lined with red flags from Waipahe St. to Mehani Circle, from Kupuna St. to Malama. Almost two weeks ago, these mini lawn picks were strategically placed on neighborhood easements at just what would appear to be the flood plane line. Their appearance arrived just after Maui County held its symposium on the impact of the impending flood plane adjustment.  Like many others, I assumed it had to do with the new flood plane issues and left the marker alone.

Consult with your physician first, then bend down carefully from the waist and read a little closer.  If your Costco readers were in good order, you’d see the red marker invites the homeowner to visit a website and 800 number regarding flood zone revisions. Well don’t be duped! There is no connection to any official surveyor or FEMA flood plane manager.

Red_Flag2A visit to the URL on the flag reveals a basic website that offers to sell a $99 “quick review”, but there are no details. A “whois” of the domain name shows the site registered to a Glenn Willis with ABA Insurance in Boulder, CO.  The installers of these red plastic picks have littered the Waimahaihai District with their commercial solicitation far and wide. The email address on file is for the domain name is:  Since virtually all of the pickets were placed on public easements, individual property owners might not have cause to complain. However,  some conscientious South Maui resident might write ABA Insurance and ask when they plan on removing the flags, and/or file a complaint with the police department insisting these bits of plastic and wire trip hazards be removed from our streets or insist that the company face littering fines.

Because people’s tendency is to leave what might appear to be an official survey stake alone, Waimahaihai residens may be living with these flags for quite some time. Let’s hope that as time goes on and the red plastic degrades and flies off,  no one injures themselves on the nearly invisible remaining sharp wire and trip hazards on their bike ride, or their sunset walk through our neighborhood streets.

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August Board Meeting, August 11, 2015

Board-Meeting-SM_(1)This is to announce the WDNA meeting of the Board of Directors on Tuesday, August 11th, 2015 from 6:30pm-8:00pm. The meeting is located at 181 Akai Street, Kihei, HI 96753. Please RSVP to if you plan to attend. The meeting is held in a private residence. Please park on the street. Mahalo!

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June Board Meeting June 16th

Board-Meeting-SM_(1)This is to announce the WDNA meeting of the Board of Directors on Tuesday, June 16th, 2015 from 6:30pm-8:00pm. The meeting is located at 125 Mehani Place, Kihei, HI 96753. Please RSVP to if you plan to attend. The meeting is held in a private residence. Please park on the street. Mahalo!

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Maui Meadows Residents Propose Three Can Plan Continuation

Buck Joiner, a Maui Meadows resident has written a proposal to the Maui County Council to extend the three can plan on a paid-for basis. The Solid Waste Division issued a report stating the additional cost for the 3 can plan should be $22/month.  However, any increase in the rate has to be approved by the County Council. At this moment, the Maui county budget is in the county council approval process and within that document is a statement that the ADDITIONAL cost for the 3 Can Plan cannot be more than $6/month. That will be approved when the budget is approved in the first (May 26) and second (June 5) readings.

After June 5 the County Budget is official,  and then Maui residents  have to convince the mayor and Solid Waste Division and the Director of Environmental Management that they should indeed restart the 3 Can Plan for $6 more per month. According to Daniel Kanahele, board member of Kihei Community Association, the $22 dollar suggestion is  not a possibility.

Kanahele suggests that we need to focus  getting the County to actually restart the 3 Can Plan for $6/month on top of the normal refuse pickup fee.  After June 5, the County Council is no longer a part of the approval process. Kanehele is asking for a LOT more letters to the mayor and the newspapers to make this happen.

Below is Buck’s Letter to the Editor:

“When the 3 Can Plan was proposed, I opposed it since I already recycled. After the pilot plan was implemented in South Kihei, I realized that suddenly all of my neighbors were participating in recycling. It was easy, effective and the participation rate dramatically increased.

The pilot program was terminated early because the county Department of Environmental Management said it was too expensive. After significant protest, the mayor agreed to allow participants to keep the blue and green cans until the additional cost for the 3 Can Plan could be determined.

The department has stated that picking up two blue (recyclables) and two green (green waste) costs $22 per month more than picking up four brown cans, which are dumped into the landfill.

Let’s examine. The number of truck runs is essentially the same, only the color of the cans is different. The green waste is dropped off at EKO Compost at no charge, plus there is the benefit of saving space in the landfill.

The blue cans contain recyclable items with monetary value, including HI-5 returnables. Commercial recyclers on Maui handle those materials and make money on them and yet the department says it costs $11 to deal with the contents of one blue can.

It is obvious the department is opposed to recycling and will fabricate phony numbers to support that position. The Environmental Protection Agency says curbside recycling costs $5.89 per month. The council set the fee at $6 per month. Let’s do this.”

Buck Joiner, Kihei

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April Board of Directors Meeting, Tuesday, April 14th

Board-Meeting-SM_(1)In accordance with our bylaws, written notice must be delivered to all members prior to special meetings (including Board of Director’s Meetings). This is a courtesy announcement for all association members and interested parties. Seating is limited.

Our next BOD meeting will be held at:

Hawaii Inspection Group Office
South Maui Center: 93 Lipoa Street
(Offices upstairs above Fabiani’s Restaurant)
Tuesday, April 14, 2015

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“What’s in Kihei’s Back Yard?” Video now on YouTube

The panel discussion that took place on October 28th, 2014 has been airing on AKAKU Community Media since February, and is now available for viewing on YouTube at the following link:

The 84 minute piece discusses residential development since 1970 which  spells potential disaster for the watershed lands impacted by the floodways along South Maui shores. Local experts Lucienne de Naie, surveyor Dudley De Ponte, and Kihei Resident Col. RC Sinnott, MD, discuss potential shortcomings of Maui’s infrastructure and raise more than a few questions—-questions that local government does not have clear answers for. Residents may be sitting unaware of industrial hazards which raise health and safety issues.

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