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Politics // The Right Price
Larry Price

Sand Snatching And Rehabilitation

If there is one virtue needed by anyone who lives on Oahu, it has to be patience.

It seems like everywhere you’re going is under construction – it’s noisy and the traffic is exceptional, and you probably are going to have to pay for the repairs.

I must say that the “rehabilitation” of the H-1 is going smoothly. It seems that, right after the Kinau off-ramp project was finished, the rehabilitation of H-1 started unfolding with numerous PSAs featuring a smiling mayor of Honolulu.

The latest rehabilitation project is the repaving of the runways at Honolulu International Airport.

Before tourists can land on the new runways, though, someone is going to have to fix the unusual erosion eating away at Waikiki Beach. And if it seems just like yesterday that we fixed the problem, it actually was in May 2012 when a $2.4 million beach replenishment took place in the front of The Royal Hawaiian. The state paid half the cost and Hawaii Tourism Authority and Kyo-ya Hotels and Resorts kicked in $500,000 to aid in the project and reduce taxpayer moaning.

Well, the waves are stealing sand from the beautiful beaches again, and nobody really knows where it’s going. If they knew, they could send out some heavy equipment to bring it back, because tourists expect to feel the sand between their toes for the high room rates they are paying.

Beaches without white sand make marginal photos.

Also at risk are expensive beachfront properties that are losing their sand. I’m not sure who’s responsible for replenishment of their stolen sand, or if there are insurance policies to cover the theft of residental sand. Insuring your property against the likes of Genshiro Kawamoto is one thing, but the state doesn’t even have any photos of who’s stealing the sand and where they are taking it, and if it knows, it isn’t saying. Neptune? Davy Jones?

No matter what, replenishing beachfront sand is very expensive.

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