Why is there so much correspondence going back and forth between the County of Maui and the State?
The Mayor’s first letter to Governor Lingle was on April 23, 2008. It was written in response to unconfirmed rumors the Mayor received about Molokai Ranch considering discontinuation of its private water and sewer systems. The letter says:
“The recent decision by Molokai Ranch to cease operations on the island of Molokai has been a serious blow. In addition to the immediate loss of jobs facing Molokai residents, informal communication indicates that Molokai Ranch is now considering discontinuing operations of its private water and wastewater systems. This news, if true, is shocking and irresponsible. Water and wastewater systems are intended to protect the public health and are, therefore, regulated by the Public Utilities Commission and the Department of Health.”
The County of Maui has corresponded heavily with the State and Federal government in an effort to be clear and concise about growing concerns and the need for the State to exercise its existing regulatory powers.
We have had some success including action by the PUC directing the utilities to continue operations beyond the August 31, 2008 deadline and an order issued by the PUC that calls for the parent company of Molokai Ranch to be a party to the PUC legal proceedings.
The Mayor has written to the Governor requesting that the Governor invoke her authority and issue an emergency declaration for Molokai.

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1. Where did the “end of August” date for Molokai Ranch to stop water and sewer (utility) services come from?
2. Who regulates (controls) public utility companies in Hawaii?
3. What has the Public Utilities Commission done so far?
4. Is the County also a customer of Molokai Ranch’s water and sewer systems?
5. Is it true that the County of Maui does not want to take over the system because it can’t afford to?
6. Doesn’t the County of Maui operate most sewer and water utilities in the county anyway?
7. Has the County of Maui inspected Molokai Ranch’s utility systems?
8. How many residents are affected?
9. Why doesn’t the Mayor declare a state of emergency to help Molokai deal with this situation?
10. Why is there so much correspondence going back and forth between the County of Maui and the State?
11. What if the PUC is unable to compel Molokai Ranch and its parent companies to continue operations until another operator can be secured and in place?
12. Why is the Public Utilities Commission raising the utility rates?
13. What if I can’t afford the rate increase that the PUC mandates?
14. Is it true that Well 17 (a current source of water), now being used by Molokai Ranch, is being used without a permit?
15. What consequences will there be to Molokai Ranch if they refuse to continue to provide water and sewer services to its customers after their deadline date of August 31, 2008?
16. Why can’t the County condemn Molokai Ranch’s properties to help pay for the cost of operating and repairing the utilities?
17. If there’s a fire, will there be water for the fire fighters to use?
18. What can Molokai residents do to ensure that services won’t be interrupted?