Update From The Capitol – December 2016

Kapolei Community Leaders, Senator Mike Gabbard
Senator Mike Gabbard

Aloha e Friends,

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!  And as always, please feel free to contact me at 586-6830 or email sengabbard@capitol.hawaii.gov if I can help you or your family in any way. You can also follow me on Twitter @senmikegabbard, Instagram @sengabbard, or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/senmikegabbard.

Ka Makana Ali‘i Opens in Kapolei

I was stoked to participate in the Grand Opening of the first phase of the Ka Makana Ali‘i Mall on October 21st. I spoke with many people who attended the various activities, and the one theme I heard repeatedly, was “thank God, we don’t have to get on H-1 and go to Pearlridge or Ala Moana.” One lady added, “This means more quality time with my family, less time on the freeway.” Notable tenants, who I was able to personally congratulate with an Honorary Certificate from the State Senate/State Legislature in addition to the mall’s developer DeBartolo Development, were Macy’s, ‘Olino Consolidated Theaters, California Pizza Kitchen, and FarmLovers Farmers’ Markets. Ka Makana Ali‘i is home to the first Hampton Inn & Suites in the state and is the first regional mall to be built on O‘ahu in over 30 years with 1.4 million square feet of retail space. The mall is located on 67 acres of lands leased from the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and will generate more than $1 billion in revenue for the agency. It’s also expected to create more than 5,000 jobs.

Changes in the State Senate

I just got word that my committee chair assignment for the 2017 session has changed. Instead of heading up the Water, Land, and Ag Committee like I did during the 2016 session, I’ll now chair the Agriculture and Environment Committee. I’m fine with this change because I previously dealt with environmental matters, as the Chair of the Energy and Environment Committee from 2009 to 2015.

Ideas for Legislation

Tempus fugit…This means our legislative session, which will begin on January 18th, is just around the corner. As always, I’m interested in your ideas if you’d like to offer suggestions for changes or improvements in how our state government operates. You don’t have to have a full-fledged bill written out, just a few bullet points to get us started and we’ll take it from there. Please let me know.

Kapolei City Lights Celebration Coming Soon

The Kapolei City Lights Electric Light Parade and Street Festival will take place on December 10th from 4-10pm. The parade will start at 6pm on Ft. Barrette Road and end on Kapolei Parkway near the Kapolei Hale. This is a great opportunity to enjoy a nice family evening with your Kapolei neighbors. For more information, contact Maile Alau of Hawaii Maoli at 394-0050.

“Listen Story” Meeting

We’ll skip our “Listen Story” meeting in December because of the Christmas Holiday Season. We’ll resume in January. I’ll send out a notice on the date, time, and place.