Saturday, June 25, 2022 |
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PUHI — Mia Ako is looking for more than a few good men.
Actually, she is
looking for 40 people between the ages of 19 and 24 who are ready, willing and
able to participate in a project to beautify roads leading to Lihu’e
The Gateway Project is finally about to begin, with a notice to
proceed to successful bidder Kaua’i Nursery & Landscaping, Inc. expected
out by Monday, June 5, Ako said.
The training and recruitment are ongoing,
and people between the eligible ages need only be “motivated and committed,”
Ako, a counselor and recruiter with the federal Job Training Partnership Act
(JTPA) program at Kaua’i Community College, said.
Those who meet income
criteria and possess the above-mentioned traits are eligible for six weeks of
unpaid classroom training free of charge, in areas such as landscaping,
irrigation systems, landscape maintenance, plant propagation, and safe and
correct use of power equipment necessary to carry out the work of making the
vehicular intersections near the airport befit Kaua’i’s nickname as the Garden
The training will also include work at KCC’s farm, in planting and
Those who successfully complete the training will be offered
work with KNL, which will need workers as early as July, she said.
people will be offered 18 weeks of paid work on the Gateway Project through
KNL. The entire project is expected to take 18 months to finish.
Jerry Nishek of KNL has indicated to her that some of the participants in this
project may be offered further employment by KNL after the 18 weeks.
project is a unique federal-state-private partnership, with funds coming from
the U.S. Department of Labor (job training) and U.S. Department of
Transportation (Urban Youth Corps).
Ako has five students in the training
now, and is looking for 40 more.
Once the major work is done, Eddie Sarita,
the county’s Convention Hall manager and Ho’olokahi volunteer program
coordinator, will be responsible for organizing hundreds of volunteer groups to
maintain the Gateway Project, Ako explained.
The Gateway beautification
project covers Ahukini Road from the airport to its intersection with Kuhio
Highway, plus Kapule Highway from its beginning at Rice Street to its end at
Kuhio Highway in Hanama’ulu.
The entire Gateway Project has a budget of $7
million, and part of the project includes planting flowering trees and tropical
plants along these state roads to give visitors a positive impression of the
island as they arrive and leave.
For more information, call Ako, 245-8354,
or JTPA, 245-8280.
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