Maui News

OHA Burial Sites Working Group Sends Kāhea for Applicants

June 22, 2021, 7:17 AM HST
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Honokahua Native Hawaiian Burial site located in West Maui. Photo by Wendy Osher.

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs is searching for a representative of the Hawaiian community familiar and experienced with the burial sites program to serve in the Burial Sites Working Group.

“OHA recognizes the important kuleana our Native Hawaiian community possesses to mālama ‘our most cherished possession,’ the iwi of our beloved kūpuna,” OHA said in an email.

The Hawaiʻi State Legislature requested OHA form a working group to address concerns relating to the administration of the State Historic Preservation Division. 

Senate Resolution 171 and House Resolution 113 both asked for OHA to form a Burial Sites Working Group, with a report due to the Legislature 20 days prior to the 2022 Legislative Session.

Burial Sites Working Group

The kuleana of the Burial Sites Working Group is:

  • Study and analyze the allegations of mismanagement by the Department of Land and Natural Resources’ State Historic Preservation Division;
  • Determine a recommended course of action to address and resolve the allegations of mismanagement by the DLNR’s State Historic Preservation Division;
  • Review and recommend improvements to the workings of the Island Burial Councils, which are administratively attached to the State Historic Preservation Division, and how to implement them;
  • Determine ways to strengthen protections and improve resources for Native Hawaiian burials;
  • Examine ways to improve the implementation of the Island Burial Councils’ duties and responsibilities and to better understand and determine their relationship to the State Historic Preservation Division and its management;
  • Review existing statutes and administrative rules pertaining to the Island Burial Councils and ways to develop their implementation; and
  • Provide recommendations on the development of a statewide survey and inventory that documents historic properties where burial sites exist or may exist, including properties owned by the State or the counties.

How to apply

  • Prepare your resume for submission.
  • Prepare a letter of intent (no longer than two pages) for submission that addresses, but does not need to be limited to, the following questions:
    • Why do you want to serve on the Burial Sites Working Group?
    • What experience or expertise can you bring to the Burial Sites Working Group?
  • Submit your resume and letter of intent via email to Pūlama Lima at [email protected] by 4:30 p.m. on July 2, 2021.

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