Operator of Kalaeloa Raceway Park to allow inspections

George Grace denies operating outside of permitted area

Published  6:41 PM HST Jan 14, 2013
KAPOLEI, Hawaii -

The Kalaeloa Raceway Park has been in business for about two years now.

But in the process of building the track, some community groups claim crews damaged an ancient altar and Makahiki site used for Hawaiian games and religious ceremonies.

”It is a very unique structure and there is nothing like that in the Hawaiian Islands so it is a very valuable cultural resource," said cultural practitioner Shad Kane.

The company racked up some $300,000 in city fines for illegal grading and stockpiling of material.

 It settled that dispute by paying $4,300 and removing the material.

But, the Raceway Park is now facing news fines of more than a $100,000 for other violations that owner George Grace is fighting.

The Department of Hawaiian Homelands said it plans to arrange a site visit to investigate complaints that the trace is operating beyond its boundaries.

"We are going to send out people and meet with the Grace’s to see what's going," said DHHL spokesman Darrell Grace.

This afternoon Grace denied he is violating conditions of his permit.

”I am only on where I am permitted to be. There is a wooded area we were allowed to use because the military disturbed it, so we were told we could be there immediately," said Grace.

Grace did admit he barred DHHL officials and health inspectors on the property last year but he has agreed to allow clean water staff to check for any source of pollution that may be impacting a nearby sinkhole, known as Ordy pond.

"I think it’s crazy to say the activities we are doing there is impacting the pond," said Grace.

Meanwhile, DHHL said Monday Grace is four months behind in paying rent, and it’s not the first time.  He now owes about $10,000.

DHHL denied giving the racetrack preferential treatment, “No, they are being treated fairly like we would other leasees," said Young.

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