Kauai Real Estate and Local News Update

Christie’s Great Estates - Your Link to Distinctive Properties Worldwide 

*****Foreclosure Filings Up In Hawaii*****

Last month the foreclosure filings tripled in the state of Hawaii. The filing rate in our state is now 1 for every 1,266 the national average is 1 for every 452 households. Nevada had the worst foreclosure rating 1 for every 74 households and the state of Vermont had the best at 1 for every 23,812 households!  Our Hawaii foreclosures are largely with mainland banks which reflect safety and security with our local banks First Hawaiian and Bank of Hawaii.  These Hawaii banks have foreclosed on very few properties and are still making loans. So what was our activity here on Kauai last week? For an excel spreadsheet CLICK HERE

*****Puhi Safeway Store Takes Another Step Forward*****
Before making a decision on issuing permits for Safeway to build its second store here on Kauai public concerns were aired in the Mokihana building on Wednesday. The store will be open 24 hours 7 days a week and the rest of the shopping center would be open 10 to 10. Four acres of landscaping would help to mitigate the impact of the buildings. The pubic showed general support but did express concerns with parking, mountain views and the shopping center being so close to a school. If this issue can be resolved in the way the Safeway representatives outlined then the public was supportive of the plan.

*****Southwest Airlines Coming To Hawaii?*****
Looking towards expansion in the International, Caribbean and Hawaii markets Southwest Airlines is overseeing the upgrading of their reservation system and are talking with other established airlines abut “code sharing” , a system that is a low risk way for the airline to expand into new frontiers by sharing seats with an established airline. 

*****Hawaiian Airlines Adds Another Airbus A330*****
In keeping with their announcement to add 24 planes to their fleet Hawaiian Airlines purchased their 3rd plane; an Airbus A330-200.  The Airbus A330 will seats 298 passengers and can fly 6,050 nautical miles allowing Hawaiian to fly farther than its current aircraft Boeing 767-300ER.
 *****Hawaiian Telcom May File For Bankruptcy*****
Hawaiian Telcom, Hawaii’s largest telephone company on the islands, hinted they may file for bankruptcy on Friday.  After posting a loss of 34 million in the third quarter, the company filed documents with the SEC stating that they may seek court protection if talks with their creditors fail.  Currently the company is carrying more than 1 billion in debt.  Earlier this month Hawaiian Telcom made the papers when they postponed a $26 million interest payment prompting speculation on a public level to their solvency.

*****Hawaii Quarter Released*****
On Monday the last quarter in the 50 State Quarter program was issued to an exuberant crowd snaking a line down Bishop Street in downtown Honolulu. The quarter depicts King Kamehameha with and outstretched arm towards the Hawaiian Islands and our States moto ” Ua mau ke ea o ka aina I ka pono” (The life of the land is perpetuated in righteousness). With the Obama being the first Hawaii born President elect the quarters and election seem to have great timing.  

Kauai Real Estate and Local News Update

Christie’s Great Estates - Your Link to Distinctive Properties Worldwide

*****Kauai Real Estate*****

You will see that new acreage lots came on the market this last week.  These lots are agricultural and will allow for one home site.  Check with me for more details if your dream is owning a home on 11 acres near Poipu!  Last weeks closed transactions are also noted, for a complete excel spreadsheet CLICK HERE   If you have any questions I look forward to hearing from you!     

*****Bernard Carvalho Wins Mayoral Election!*****

In a race with former Mayor Joann Yukimura Bernard Carvalho won the election for the Kauai Mayor seat which has been open since Bryan Babtiste died of a heart attack earlier this year.  The term will be for two years, he won the election with a 2 to 1 margin.  5 out of the 6 charter amendments were passed as well and they are:


 All County Council meetings will be open to the public unless mandated by the Sunshine Law.

Candidates who receive the highest number of votes in the Primary Election for the office of Mayor and prosecuting Attorney will run in the General Election.

Development will be limited to what is in the General Plan which calls for an annual growth rate of 1 and 1.5 percent.  Under this new amendment the County Council and adopt an ordinance that restri8cts the Planning Commission authority to approve any transient accommodations projects.

It was decided that the Office of the County Auditor will be established within the legislative branch to conduct performance and financial audits of funds, programs, and operations of any agency, department or operation.

It was approved that and elected or appointed officer or employee will not be allowed to participate in matters of which they, or their immediate family, have a personal interest.


The one measure that failed was the permission of County members to appear on behalf of private interests of which they serve.

*****Queens Bath Possible Seasonal Closure*****

The 4 drownings in one week this past month has prompted the county legislative body to pass a resolution that urges government agencies and guide-book authors to address the hazards of Queens Bath in Princeville.  The winter swells on the north shore turn the calm, picturesque destination into a hazard during our winter months and many feel not enough is being done to warn tourists.  Signage is in place but largely ignored and the tourist books do not highlight the hazards of this area.  The County is now considering closing Queens Bath during the dangerous months.

*****Fire Started By Lost Hiker*****

Last Friday a fire was set intentionally by a man who had set out on a trail to gather maile vine in a remote location in Kokee.  The man, who is described as in his 20’s, was hiking with his dog and when he did not return as planned was reported missing.  To draw attention to where he was the man set a fire which authorities did see and the man and his dog were picked up.  Authorities worked into the night to extinguish the fire which was burning up native auwe plants.  The incident is being investigated by the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

*****California Builder Back In The News*****

The Kauai’i and Ni’ihau Island Burial Council recommended that the Department of Land and natural Resources Historic Preservation Division reject the revised burial treatment purposed by landowner Joseph Brescia (see blog posting    http://blogs.alohaliving.com/kauai-home-sales/2008/09/22/kauai-real-estate-and-local-news-update-4/     ) .  Brescia is building a home on which 30 confirmed ancient gravesites are located and a condition of his building permit is the Burial Council be satisfied with his plan and a vote of 6-0 indicates that they clearly are not.  This could result in a revocation of his building permit.  

Kauai Real Estate and Local News Update

Christie’s Great Estates - Your Link to Distinctive Properties Worldwide

News on our real estate front is Nawiliwili Estates has been released to the public.  These are acre lots that are located by Kauai High School, for more information please contact me.  For an excel spreadsheet of last weeks new listings and closed transactions CLICK HERE

*****Poipu Bypass Road Opens*****

Ala Kalanikaumaka Road, or Wester Bypass Road, opened on Tuesday after a blessing cereomony.  This road connects the Poipu Roundabout to Lawai Road which is just below the Oma’o road intersection.  The scenic 1.5 mile long road offers an alternative way to get in and out of Poipu along with some stunning scenic views of Koloa.  This road was built by Kukui’ula Development Company in compliance with infrastructure requirements for their project and goes right by their new shopping center which will open in the summer of 2009 and will include regional cuisine restaurants, retail stores and commercial offices.  The road is welcome to those of us living here in Poipu but be careful when you drive it as the speed limit is 25 mph and will be strictly enforced.

*****50 Homeless As Makeshift House Collapses*****

On Oahu more than 50 people were left homeless when a portion of a home in Kalihi area that they were living in collapsed.  Residents said they were paying $500 a month for rooms that were in unsanitary conditions; some residents said they were required to help construct additional rooms while still paying rent themselves.  “Construction” was plywood walls as high as four stories and tarpaulins used as roofing material.  More than 20 complaints had been filed with the city council prompting foreclosure proceedings against the owners who had not paid fines for illegal construction.  The Honolulu City Fire Department ordered the electricity to be shut off for safety reasons and the Red Cross stepped in to accommodate the displaced residents.  Advocates for the homeless in Hawaii say this this is evidence of the “hidden homeless”.  

*****First Snow Of The Season On Hawaii*****

Snow fell on top of Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawaii but melted two hours later.  However it was enough for us to have recorded our first snowfall of the season.  Usually snow will start around Thanksgiving so we are a bit early.

*****Superferry Ship Postponed*****

Citing the current state of our countries economics Superferry CEO Tom Fargo announced that the Oahu to Hawaii Superferry run is postponed.  The second ship is still being delivered in February and the company is looking into short term uses for it.  The company’s CEO remains optimistic about returning to Kauai but when asked when that would be he did not name a date.  He said that the last time he heard the EIS (Environmental Impact Study) will be done in January and by spring they will have a solid year of successful Maui runs to draw from.  Opposition from the local community still remains very apparent.

*****Koreans Allowed Into Hawaii Visa-Free*****

Starting November 17 2008 Korean travelers will find it easier to travel to Hawaii after President Bush signed a “visa waiving” bill.  The bill also includes some other countries such as Hungary, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic but those countries are too far away for Hawaii to benefit.  Korea has deep cultural ties to Hawaii and many citizens there have relatives who live here, we also have a very large Korean American community.  The Hawaiian Tourism Board announced that they are set for a South Korean boom as a result of this and expect arrivals to double to 80,000 within the first year and double again to 160,000 by 2010.  Korean Air already has a non-stop Seoul to Honolulu run and have shown interest in expanding to include more routes.