LCC Theatre Revamp, New Sirens For West Oahu

Kidani’s Korner …Sen. Michelle Kidani

Siren update

The Pacific hurricane season officially ends Nov. 30, but it’s always important to be vigilant about severe weather and other emergency conditions at any time of the year.

I’ve reported previously about the importance of our civil defense warning system and the malfunctioning siren in Crestview that serves as a warning device for neighboring communities Waikele and Waipio Gentry.

State Civil Defense has now informed me that a replacement for the Crestview siren should be in place in early December — a few weeks ahead of schedule — restoring service to those three communities. Also, our neighborhood warning coverage will improve with a new siren to be installed at Waikele Community Park sometime in 2015. We are grateful to State Civil Defense for moving these two projects onto its priority list.

State construction projects

Funds approved by the Legislature continue to support local jobs and improve our schools. A contract in the amount of $253,600 has been awarded to Haron Construction of Pearl City for construction of a second ramp to provide additional disability access to the Kaleiopuu Elementary School campus in Village Park, as well as quicker evacuation from the campus in the event of an emergency. The award notice indicates that work on the new ramp should begin soon.

The state also has released $8 million we approved for major structural repairs, interior renovations and improvements at Leeward Community College Theatre.

The theater, which hosts 100,000 patrons a year, was completed in 1974, and no major renovation work has been performed since.

2015 Legislative session approaching

Our 2015 Legislative session begins in just two months, and already informational briefings and hearings on potential legislative issues are being scheduled. In odd-numbered years, we formulate a two-year budget for the state, and our deliberations will be especially important to further stabilize our economy and support state services.

I have accepted an appointment as chairwoman of the Committee on Education, where I previously served as vice chairwoman. The committee oversees programs in the Department of Education, including early education, K-12 public schools, public charter schools, continuing education and the state’s public library system.

DOE’s budget is one of the largest of any state agency, and I look forward to the challenges of supporting our public school students and teachers with the best resources we can afford.

As always, I look forward to hearing ideas you may have about public education and any other issues that are likely to come before us in the new year.

Finally, allow me to extend my sincere mahalo for the strong support that district residents showed me on election day earlier this month.

I am humbled by your vote of confidence and gladly accept the responsibility of representing you in the state Senate for the next four years. You can be assured that I will be working diligently on your behalf.

Meanwhile, with Thanksgiving and the holiday season approaching, I wish all of my friends and neighbors in our several communities all the best for joyful celebrations in the company of family and friends.

Contact state Sen. Michelle Kidani at 586-7100 or email