Council to meet over proposed KE sale

The Kaua’i County Council will meet during a special meeting at 1 p.m. Sept. 5 to consider whether to support the proposed $215 million Kauai Electric sale to the Kaua’i Island Utility Co-op.

The meeting will be held at the historic Kaua’i County Building. The council has scheduled another special meeting/executive session in same building at 9 a.m. Sept. 9 to take up the same matter if no vote is taken at the Sept. 5 meeting, according to a council staffer.

The council met at two special meetings/ executive sessions, but has taken no action.

Mayor Maryanne Kusaka, Wallace Rezentes Sr., Kusaka’s administrative assistant, and William Milks, a special counsel hired by the county to review the sale of the proposed utility, attended last week’s council meeting.

A council committee has given conditional preliminary approval to support the sale.

The state Public Utilities Commission must give final approval to the sale between KIUC and the Citizens Communications Corp. of Stamford, Conn., before the transaction becomes official.

KIUC, Citizens and three intervenors in the proposed sale – the Consumer Advocate, the Department of Navy and Kaua’i County – plan to submit final position papers to the PUC by Sept. 10.

Council committees, meanwhile, will gather at a regular meeting at the historic County Building at 4:30 p.m. Sept. 5.

The planning committee is expected to take up the issues of unpermitted grading in Moloa’a Bay, Pila’a Bay and elsewhere on Kaua’i.

The county is considering civil and criminal action against north shore property owner James Pflueger after work on his property resulted in runoff flowing onto the property of a home in Pila’a Bay last November.

The county is trying to determine whether the damage was the result of unpermitted grading.

Runoff from a diversion around culverts that were allegedly installed without county permits also poured into offshore waters and damaged marine eco-systems, county officials contend.

The county has ordered all work stopped on Pflueger’s property and remedial work to be done.

However, Amy and Rick Marvin, whose property abuts Pflueger’s property and was damaged by the runoff, contend continued work by Pflueger’s workers poses a threat to their home. A top representative for Pflueger has refuted the claim.

In a federal clean water lawsuit, the Kilauea Neighborhood Center and Limu Coalition are seeking damages for grading work on Pflueger’s property and runoff into the ocean.

Pilaa 400 LLC, of which Pflueger is a partner, recently withdrew its application for final county subdivision approval for about 400 acres in Pila’a, in which the unpermitted grading allegedly occurred.

The council committee also may take up complaints about reports of unpermitted grading on property in Moloa’a Bay.

In other matters, the committee of the whole is scheduled to discuss activities at the Kauai Resource Center by the Lihu’e Airport.

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