Maui News

Speaker Saiki Calls for New Management at Mauna Kea

February 3, 2021, 7:28 AM HST
* Updated February 3, 7:30 AM
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Hawaiʻi House Speaker Scott Saiki. PC: Hawaiʻi House Democrats (file photo May 11, 2020)

House Speaker Scott Saiki is calling for new management at Mauna Kea, saying the University of Hawaiʻi should cease efforts to extend its master lease at the site.

“The University has tried its best to manage Mauna Kea, but for too long, the
University’s work has been shrouded by its inability to appropriately manage
cultural practices, resources and education,” said Speaker Saiki in post-opening day remarks.

UH has held the master lease to manage the Mauna Kea Astronomy Precinct and the Natural and Cultural Preservation Area since 1968; and is currently working to extend the lease, which is set to expire in 2033.

Speaker Saiki concluded, “Mauna Kea is a manifestation of what happens when we draw lines, work in silos, and disregard different views.”

He said the House will introduce a resolution to being the process of reassessing a new governance structure for Mauna Kea, and he plans to invite Kū Kiaʻi Maunakea to have a seat at the table and be a part of the discussion.

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The remarks were part of Saiki’s address, which was made on Tuesday in place of opening day remarks, which were postponed due to potential unrest at state capitols.

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A request for comment from the University of Hawaiʻi was not immediately returned.

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