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REPORT OF THE <br /> COMMITTEE ON FINANCE <br /> DATE: September 6, 2017 Re: Comm. No. 401/Res. No. 261-17 <br /> PLACE: Council Chambers • <br /> Hilo, Hawai`i <br /> TIME: 1:35 p.m. <br /> Council Chair and Members <br /> Hawai`i County Council <br /> Hilo, Hawaii 96720 <br /> Your Committee on Finance, to which was referred Resolution No. 261-17, reports as follows: <br /> Resolution No. 261-17, transmitted by Finance Director Collins Tomei, via Communication <br /> No. 401 dated August 17, 2017, authorizes the Office of the Mayor to enter into an agreement with the <br /> Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL),pursuant to Hawai`i Revised Statutes 46-7, for the <br /> County of Hawai`i to receive reimbursement funds for streetlight conversion on property held by the <br /> Department of Hawaiian Home Lands. <br /> This agreement is for DHHL to reimburse the County$400,000 for the conversion of streetlights on <br /> DHHL lands from low pressure sodium to light emitting diode. <br /> Council Member Susan L. K. Lee Loy requested some background as to better understand this <br /> resolution and the amount Hawaiian Home Lands is required to reimburse the County. <br /> Ron Thiel, Chief of the Traffic Division, stated six years ago he was working with DHHL regarding <br /> accident issues. During discussions with DHHL's administrators, one of whom was Linda Chin, she <br /> stated that she was appreciative of the County paying for electricity for streetlights on DHHL land, <br /> which Mr. Thiel was aware of because State statute provides that the County has to maintain roads <br /> within DHHL property. He noted that currently two counties in the State pay for electricity associated <br /> with streetlights and the other three counties do not. He explained in early 2000 Mayor Kim wrote a <br /> letter stating the County would pay for electricity. Therefore, when DHHL develops their land and <br /> installs infrastructure (streetlights), the County agreed to maintain it. <br /> Mr. Thiel stated he worked with Jeff Fujimoto a few years ago and brought up the conversation about <br /> paying for the upgrade on streetlights. He understood it to be a volunteer situation, there wasn't any <br /> pressure to do it. It was just part of maintaining existing facilities on DHHL properties and paying for <br /> the electricity. Mr. Thiel said the electric bill is over $200,000, since the County started paying for it, <br /> and there are about 700 lights on DHHL property. At that time, Mr. Fujimoto said that he would apply <br /> for Capital Improvement Projects funds to reimburse the County in the amount of$400,000. That <br /> process is complete and transfers the amount back to the County. Mr. Thiel noted that prior to receiving <br /> this reimbursement funds from the current Operating Budget,marked as Signal and Street Light <br /> Upgrades, was used to complete streetlight conversions. So the funds associated with Resolution <br /> No. 261-17 reimburses the Highway Fund. Bill 63 would transfer the funds back into the Operating <br /> Budget so Mr. Thiel's division can continue upgrading the traffic signals themselves. <br /> • <br /> FC Report No. 37 <br />