Excerpts from the minutes of Mauna Kea Management Board Tuesday, November 27, 2007.
Allan Ikawa, former member of the Board of Regents (BOR), was offered the floor. He gave a brief summary of the controversies and emotions that arose during the development and adoption of the Master Plan.
In 2000, Billy Bergin, Allan Ikawa, and Nainoa Thompson were appointed by the Chair of the BOR to spearhead a committee to oversee the development of the Master Plan. Mr. Ikawa’s impression of the draft Master Plan was that it was not saleable, but felt in order for the plan to be accepted it was necessary to get buy in from everyone. But the University decided to go ahead with it anyway. Senator Inouye and his representative Bill Kikuchi established Aha Hui Ku Mauna comprised of Ed Stevens, Hannah Springer, Arthur Hoke, Pua Kanahele, Mauna Roy, Larry Kimura, and Ululani Sherlock. Also participating were legal counsel, Walter Kirimitsu, and BOR staff David Iha, and Carl Makino.
There were three major issues. One was the sacredness of the mountain. The second was the misconception that the observatories were making a lot of money from observing time and neither the community nor the University was getting anything. The third and the biggest issue was that Manoa was telling the Big Island what to do. In the end the Master Plan called for everything to pass through the University of Hawaii at Hilo (UHH), thus giving people on the Big Island a say about the management of the mountain.
The meeting to adopt the Master Plan was held on the Hilo campus. Ed Stevens took a lot of heat. People were cursing the regents to do the right thing. Although Nainoa Thompson wrote the resolutions supporting the Master Plan, he was unable read it, instead Alan and Billy Bergin ended up reading it.
Mr. Ikawa asked that the University respect the Big Island and the individuals such as Ed Stevens and Arthur Hoke who gave up a lot of their time and put considerable amount of effort and passion. He stated the OMKM needed to be funded correctly. When President Dobelle was spending money, one of the first places he tried to cut was the office. Mr. Ikawa told Wick Sloan if he cut OMKM all hell was going break loose.
Mr. Ikawa ended by saying let these people finish the job. They are on the right path. Mauna Kea has been here for a million years, another couple of years won’t hurt. You got to do it the right way. Once you go down the wrong path, it is going to take an eternity to bring it back to where you are right now.
Entire document: MKMB Minutes11-27-07