Maui News

Additional Funding Proposed for Haleakalā and Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Parks

June 10, 2021, 8:12 AM HST
* Updated June 10, 2:37 PM
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Haleakalā. PC: The Nature Conservancy

The Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi applauds the Biden administration for including additional funding for Maui’s Haleakalā National Park and Hawaiʻi Island’s Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park as part of the 2022 Great American Outdoors Act funding allocations.

The administration’s request includes $6,125,000 to protect 3,019 acres at Haleakalā National Park on Maui and $150,000 to protect an additional three acres at the Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park on the west side of Hawaiʻi Island.

This additional funding for Haleakalā National Park and Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park would come from the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is intended to secure public access and improve recreational opportunities on public lands, protect watersheds and wildlife, and preserve ecosystem benefits for local communities.  

“President Biden recognizes the importance of preserving Hawaiʻi’s special places and has made caring for the environment one of his top priorities,” said Tyler Dos Santos-Tam, Chair of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi.

“Mahalo to the Biden Administration for proposing additional funds for Haleakalā National Park,” said Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino. “Haleakalā is one of our most revered wahi pana (significant places); its majesty is the subject of both chants and songs about Maui for a reason. The people of Maui County welcome the additional protection for this unique and fragile ecosystem.”

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“Our National Parks here in Hawaiʻi preserve so much more than fragile ecosystems, beautiful scenery, and pristine natural landscapes. Ultimately, they preserve our host culture’s stories – their history and sense of place in this world. For many, the areas here, protected by the National Park Service, are sacred and deserving of the highest respect and care, and we mahalo President Biden for understanding that connection and honoring it by providing additional funding to help mālama the places we hold so dear,” said Hawaiʻi County Mayor Mitch Roth.

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“Haleakalā is an exceptional place, beloved by Native Hawaiians, kamaʻāina, and visitors alike. Preserving additional land adjacent to the park will ensure that future generations can enjoy the rugged vistas, open spaces, and cultural sites that make East Maui special,” added Stephanie Ohigashi, Chair of the Maui County Democratic Party.

“The historic and cultural value of Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau is unparalleled. Additional funding for the park will help preserve it for future generations,” said Barbara Dalton, Chair of the Hawaiʻi County Democratic Party.
Projects were selected for Fiscal Year 2022 to align with core Biden-Harris administration priorities, including strengthening resilience to climate change impacts, protecting biodiversity and other natural resource values, benefitting underserved or at-risk communities, and demonstrating strong local partnership support.

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