Thursday, April 7, 2011

County of Kauai Important Agricultural Lands Study

In 2008, the University of Hawaii Department of Urban and Regional Planning (DURP) completed a pilot study for the State Land Use Commission on the designation of Important Agricultural Lands (IAL) using the framework from Act 183, SLH 2005.

Fulfilling the legislative mandate in Act 183, the County of Kauai subsequently approved funding to contract with DURP to identify IAL county‐wide. That study can be found here at County of Kauai Important Agricultural Lands Study.

The policy supporting Act 183 is codified at HRS § 205-41, as follows:
Declaration of policy. It is declared that the people of Hawaii have a substantial interest in the health and sustainability of agriculture as an industry in the State. There is a compelling state interest in conserving the State's agricultural land resource base and assuring the long-term availability of agricultural lands for agricultural use to achieve the purposes of:(1) Conserving and protecting agricultural lands;(2) Promoting diversified agriculture;(3) Increasing agricultural self-sufficiency; and(4) Assuring the availability of agriculturally suitable lands,pursuant to article XI, section 3, of the Hawaii state constitution.
Under HRS § 205-47, each county is directed by the legislature to identify and map potential important agricultural lands within its jurisdiction based on the standards and criteria laid out in Act 183, which is also codified at HRS § 205-41, et seq.

1 comment:

keolachilds said...

Section 7 of Act 183 provides that each county shall, within FIVE years of "county receipt of state funds for the identification process", report out to the LUC its recommended IALs (maps) for the LUC to consider for adoption. Only Kauai got $$ from the state to do this so far. Given the budget crunch, it may be a long time before the other counties follow Kauai's lead.
One concern I have is that upon implementation the STATE (dept. of agric.) will review and approve all "farm dwelling and employee housing unit" plans statewide; How will that work staff and manpower-wise? County planning depts. will no longer have the duty or authority to enforce land use limitations on the number of farm and employee housing units on lands put in this special category [HRS 205-45.5(7). What happened to "home rule?"