The Permit Process?

Having gone up against this process personally, I can tell you that I have learned a great deal about government. Most of what I have learned I do not care for. No, that is an understatement. Most of what I have learned I abhor. Now this is just my opinion and I have a right to that. The government just seems to make laws that will accommodate whatever it is they are trying to accomplish, be it wrong or right. In my opinion the permit process is the most corrupt and abused law they have ever come up with. It gives government officials control of everything we the people want to do. Think about it though, it also gives government officials a great way to make a buck! In most cases if you want a permit and you are wealthy and also corrupt, you can get a permit. If you are just the average Joe or an honest person and you want a permit you are in a world of trouble.

The key word in all of this is Process! The County of Maui has many processes and their favourite response to any questioning is "That's the process!" If I have heard it once I have heard it a thousand times. Even the State of Hawaii is using this process. If you think about it, and it hurts me to do so, even the Federal Government uses this.

Now most processes involve your having to hire an attorney. That is just the beginning of your troubles and expenses. In most cases the attorney will cost you more than a simple bribe would. But if you are an honest person this is your only alternative. You better make sure you hire a good and honest attorney! What did I say? Attorneys have to get a license from the State to practice so where does that leave us?


Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, August 1, 2004
State may require beach permits
BY Kelly Yamanouchi
Advertiser Staff Writer


To the list of must haves for a Hawaiian beach wedding - lei, white bunting, folding chairs and canopies - you may soon need to add one more item: something to cut through red tape.

Melissa Burbank and Michael McClary of Vermont were married at Banzai Pipeline beach, with the Rev. Kermit Rydell performing the ceremony. Many fear that a Department of Land and Natural Resources proposal may take the joy and beauty out of such events. says
Deborah Booker of The Honolulu Advertiser

Hawai'i has long been a place where couples can celebrate their marriage on a beach without the hassle of permits. But that could change under proposed amendments to state rules on the commercial use of most beaches.

Draft rules proposed by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources would require permits on certain beaches for a variety of commercial activities, including surf schools, kayak rentals and weddings. z

State officials say the proposed rules may be necessary to address the high demand for beaches.

"We're trying to maintain the enjoyment of the area for everyone," said Peter Young, DLNR chairman.

But for some, including Nina Labbe, who lives at Hickam Air Force Base and held her wedding on Makapu'u Beach in July, the idea of requiring permits for beach weddings "just doesn't sound right."

"That was our dream - to get married on the beach," Labbe said. "The beach is supposed to be for everybody, it's supposed to be something that everybody can enjoy and you know, it just made my wedding beautiful."

"All this red tape involved - it just takes all the romance and fun out of it," said Labbe.

Diana George, president of the Maui Wedding Association, said the wedding industry brings millions of dollars into the state through businesses including airlines, accommodations, restaurants, caterers, recreational activities, gifts, wedding planners, ministers, photographers, musicians, bakers and florists. "There's people that make their living off of this," George said. She says she worries that Hawai'i will lose its standing as a top wedding destination if permits are required for beach weddings.

In the first six months of this year, out of 14,390 marriage licenses issued in the state, 9,711 were issued to brides and grooms who were nonresidents.

Further, many Japanese tourists who get married in Hawai'i don't apply for marriage licenses because they were legally married in Japan and hold "show" ceremonies in the Islands.

Mela Kealoha-Lindsey, whose business Hawaiian Creations By Mela, LLC does wedding invitations and certificates, said that because weddings are on beaches for only about 15 minutes, "it shouldn't be so difficult."

"It's unnecessary," added Kermit Rydell, a reverend whose business A Beach Wedding does as many as 50 weddings a month. "Most coordinators I know keep control of the crowd and usually we don't have more than 20 or 25 people."

If permits are required, "I don't even know how we could function like that," said Karen Carson Russ, a pastor who officiates weddings. Couples from out-of-state planning to get married in Hawai'i often don't decide where to hold their wedding until after they've arrived and are driving around the island checking out spots, she said.

While some beaches already require permits for weddings, most beaches in Hawai'i are so-called "unencumbered land" and do not require permits, according to Dede Mamiya, administrator for the land division of DLNR. Unencumbered land is land that is not leased, set aside to agencies or otherwise designated for a specific use.

The proposed rules for permitting are not final and discussions between the state and the wedding industry are ongoing. DLNR held a hearing on draft rules requiring permits in February and Mamiya said her department hopes to seek approval from the state land board within the next couple of months.

"We're going down the pathway of establishing rules for the beach area," Mamiya said.

Beachgoers and businesses that operate on beaches are "competing for limited space," Mamiya said. For example, one of the most visible conflicts is with surf schools using the beach. "People from the public, even other businesses, are looking to us to give them answers as to dealing with those conflicts," Mamiya said.

One of the biggest problems wedding planners have with the proposal for permits is that applicants would need to apply at least three weeks but not more than two months before the wedding.

That doesn't work with the way people usually plan their weddings, they say. Usually, couples either plan their weddings a year in advance and need to know where they will be able to hold their wedding. Or, tourists decide to get married on the spur of the moment while they are here on vacation.

"They want to take advantage of our no waiting marriage license laws and they want to get married right then," said George, of the Maui Wedding Association.

"To say it has to be three weeks - this industry doesn't work like that. We don't have three weeks," the pastor Russ said. Weddings and vow renewals are often "very spontaneous things" here, she said.

The Maui Wedding Association has drawn up a position statement asking that weddings not be included in the rules requiring permits for use of unencumbered land.

"Applying this rule to weddings is not appropriate," George said. "Our feeling here on Maui is that this rule will severely damage the wedding industry."

State tourism liaison Marsha Wienert said the beach use issue is one "where you try and balance the commercial activities with the public's right to access." She said the issue started at Ka'anapali on Maui and concessionaires on the beach there.

Young at the DLNR said new rules could include creating a space on the beach where weddings are permitted, "where it doesn't negatively impact the beach experience for every other user." Other possibilities are creating a concession or prohibiting weddings on certain beaches.

"Every couple loves to have that shot where they're running along the beach against the sunset," Wienert said. "The weddings market for Hawai'i overall is huge business and it takes tourism to a different level and touches business that don't normally feel the economic pluses - such as a photographer, videographer, bakery."

"We want to be very careful as we do this," Wienert said. "Because we want to be very pro-business where this is concerned and spread the wealth amongst many sectors of our business community."

Reach Kelly Yamanouchi at kyamanouchi@honoluluadvertiser.com or 808 535-2470.

Posted: Sunday, Feb 12, 2006 - 09:40:45 pm HST
State working on rules for beach weddings, surf schools
By Chris Cook - The Garden Island - Associated Press

State officials are working on proposed rules that would require permits on certain beaches for a variety of commercial activities, including surf schools, kayak rentals and weddings, officials said.

The regulation comes years after commercial tour boating out of Hanalei Bay came under state regulation, with the issue of using state-controlled beaches a key one in the controversy that went on for years.

"We're going down the pathway of establishing rules for the beach area," said Dede Mamiya, administrator for the land division of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources.

She said beachgoers and businesses that operate on beaches are "competing for limited space."

"People from the public, even other businesses, are looking to us to give them answers as to dealing with those conflicts," Mamiya said.
Proposed rules for permitting are not final and discussions between the state and the wedding industry are ongoing.
The new rules may also begin to regulate surfing schools.

Surfing schools, a for-pay beach activity where a local surfer teachers visitors the basics of riding a surfboard at beaches used by local surfers and swimmers, are now found across Kaua'i.

Former women's world-champion surfer Margo Oberg has given surfing instruction at Po'ipu Beach for years.

Now surf schools are flourishing on the East Side at Wailua, on the North Shore at Hanalei and at other locations.
Most of the schools are mobile, run out of a pickup truck full of surfboards.

Having a visitor actually stand up and ride a wave are a major attraction, and some schools give a money-back guarantee if they the visitor doesn't stand.

Beach weddings on Kaua'i are often performed by a local minister licensed to perform marriages. The cost and complexity of the beach weddings is usually fairly simple, though they can be part of a package sale that includes photos and a video, a wedding meal off the beach, limo rides and other features. and can be quite simple.

Beach wedding locations are used at no charge, are sometimes held at sundown and are a key ingrediant in an industry that brings in millions of dollars to Hawai'i each year.

About three dozen "wedding consultants" are listed in the Kaua'i Yellow Pages, and more can be found by doing an Internet word search.
Operators range from small sole propreitorships to elaborate services provided by major results.

Diana George, president of the Maui Wedding Association, said she worries a permitting process would cause Hawai'i to lose its standing as a top wedding destination. If permits are required, "I don't even know how we could function like that," said Karen Carson Russ, a pastor who officiates weddings.

One of the biggest problems wedding planners have with the proposal for permits is that applicants would need to apply at least three weeks but not more than two months before the wedding. That doesn't work with the way people usually plan their weddings, they say.
Usually, couples either plan their weddings a year in advance and need to know where they will be able to hold their wedding, or tourists decide to get married on the spur of the moment while here on vacation.

"To say it has to be three weeks - this industry doesn't work like that. We don't have three weeks," Russ said. Weddings and vow renewals are often "very spontaneous things."

State tourism liaison Marsha Wienert said the beach use issue is one "where you try and balance the commercial activities with the public's right to access."

Land and Natural Resources Director Peter Young said new rules could include creating a space on the beach where weddings are permitted, "where it doesn't negatively impact the beach experience for every other user."

Other possibilities are creating a concession or prohibiting weddings on certain beaches.

On the Net: www.hawaii. gov/dlnr/

The Garden Island


 THE SENATE S.R. NO. 103
TWENTY-FOURTH LEGISLATURE, 2007 S.D. 1
STATE OF HAWAII

SENATE RESOLUTION

REQUESTING THE DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES TO ESTABLISH UNIFORM RULES AND PERMITTING PROCEDURES FOR PUBLIC BEACH WEDDINGS.

WHEREAS, Hawaii is home to some of the world's most spectacular beaches; and

WHEREAS, these beautiful and serene beaches are becoming popular locations for wedding ceremonies for residents of Hawaii and tourists from all over the world; and

WHEREAS, Hawaii has a proud history of ensuring public access for all to its beaches and shorelines; and

WHEREAS, recently, couples planning beach weddings in Hawaii have been receiving inconsistent information on permitting procedures and requirements, often being told that permits are not required; and

WHEREAS, on several occasions, beach wedding ceremonies have been interrupted by enforcement officials from different divisions of the Department of Land and Natural Resources in an effort to enforce inconsistent permitting procedures; and

WHEREAS, the Department of Land and Natural Resources has acknowledged that uniform rules need to be adopted to address these inconsistencies; and

WHEREAS, chapter 171, Hawaii Revised Statutes, provides the Department of Land and Natural Resources with jurisdiction over public lands, which includes state-controlled beaches and small boat harbors; and

WHEREAS, the State's primary role in the shoreline area is to preserve and protect coastal resources and support public access along and below the shoreline; and

WHEREAS, generally, the counties have the primary authority and duty to develop and maintain public access to and along the shorelines; and

WHEREAS, two divisions within the State's Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Conservation and Resource Enforcement Division and the Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, seem to have conflicting rules regarding permit requirements for beach weddings; and

WHEREAS, the Conservation and Resource Enforcement Division, with full police powers, enforces all state laws and rules involving state lands, state parks, historic sites, forest reserves, aquatic life and wildlife areas, coastal zones, conservation districts, state shores, as well as county ordinances involving county parks; now, therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twenty-fourth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2007, that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is requested to establish uniform rules and permitting procedures for weddings on state-controlled beaches and to ensure consistent intra-agency enforcement of the rules; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is requested to cooperate with the counties in establishing appropriate rules and permits for beach weddings, and to provide consistency between state and county rules relating to beach weddings; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is requested to adopt rules and permitting procedures that allow for the issuance of annual and daily beach wedding permits, where appropriate; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources provide opportunities for input and collaboration with wedding service providers statewide who provide services for beach weddings during the rulemaking process; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources submit a report on the actions taken pursuant to this measure to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the 2008 Regular Session; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Resolution be transmitted to the Chairperson of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Administrator of the Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, the Administrator of the Conservation and Resource Enforcement Division, the Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu, Mayor of the County of Hawaii, Mayor of the County of Kauai, and the Mayor of the County of Maui.


 
When this was first in the Maui News it was a joke!
Not anymore!


Link to Hawaii Administrative Rules - Title 13
Link to March 7th, 2007 Amended Rules
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