Bill 11 not stopping rental gear in Kailua

People walk in kayaks, watersport gear

Published  4:40 PM HST Aug 16, 2012
KAILUA, Hawaii -

Thursday was the first day of the city's new ban on commercial activity at Kailua and Kalama beach parks.

But, if the goal was to get rid of all those people renting kayaks, it didn't work.  Many still found ways to get their rented gear through the park and into the water.

In the past, the rental company would have delivered the kayaks to the beach, but the new law prohibits deliveries.

"It would just be easier if we didn't have to put it on there.  It looks kind of ridiculous with them on a small car," said Zane Burton.

Because no rental company employees were present at the beach access, the excursion was legal.

Visitors walked their rented kayaks to the beach.  Kailua Sailboards and Kayaks is the largest rental company in Kailua.  Because it is so close to the beach, customers can transport their kayaks without help from the company.

The new law does little to slow the mass rentals from businesses.

"It's a matter of educating the public right now," said Parks and Recreation Director Gary Cabato.  "People need to know the laws, the parameters of the law, what they can do and cannot do."

Cabato says loopholes in the law will enable large scale rentals to continue.  And it's not just the kayaks.

Segway tours continued along the bike path through Kailua Beach Park.  Company owner Rick McMahon is hoping his customers will be allowed to go through the park to reach other destinations.  If not, his operation is in trouble.

"There's a good chance we'll probably be forced to close our business," said McMahon.  "We have six employees and it would be unfortunate."

Two companies hold permits allowing them to legally rent windsurfing boards and gear at the beach park.  But, those permits expire in December and when they do the companies will have to leave.

The lunch wagon has a permit to operate until 2015.  The law has been changed, but rented equipment is still everywhere.

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