Task force jettisons member ahead of key voteUPDATED 6:58 PM HST Sep 23, 2013Video Transcript
whether to BAN parking at Laniakea Beach, and the DOT indicates it'll follow the group's lead. KITV4's Andrew Pereira has more in today's top story. Andrew... The task force is suddenly missing a member! Paula, Yunji... the DOT says Gil Riviere was dropped because he's no longer a state representative ... and it had nothing to do with his criticism of the state agency. The country is STILL country, but North Shore residents still have to deal with their own version of cross-town traffic. It's gridlock at Laniakea Beach. ERIC CAPLAN: "A FRIEND OF MINE LIVES UP IN PUPUKEA, TOLE ME IT TOOK HIM ALMOST TWO HOURS TO GET FROM WHERE FOODLAND IS ALL THE WAY TOWARDS HALEIWA THERE WAS SO MUCH TRAFFIC." The problem: everyone's trying to cross the street to see the sea turtles. Moving the turtles somewhere else is NOT an option, but blocking off the unpaved parking lot is. Wednesday evening, members of the Laniakea Task Force are expected to vote on a state Transportation Department proposal to set- up barricades. GIL RIVIERE: "IT'S NO PARKING OR NOTHING, AND THAT'S REALLY, REALLY UNACCEPTABLE." ERIC CAPLAN: "IT'S JUST GOING TO MAKE PEOPLE PARK IN OTHER PLACES. YOU KNOW DOWN BY THE RANCH, BEHIND ME ALL THE WAY DOWN TO CHUN'S. PEOPLE WILL FIGURE OUT A WAY." But as the only viable short-term solution to turtle traffic, some members of the Laniakea Task Force say they have no choice but to vote in favor of a parking blockade. Task force member Antya Miller represents the Haleiwa Chamber of Commerce, which in August voted 60 to 40 percent to support the barricades. ANTYA MILLER: "IT'S EITHER THAT OR NO SHORT-TERM RELIEF FOR THE NEXT FIVE TO SEVEN YEARS, HOWEVER LONG IT TAKES US." Complicating matters is a recent decision to drop Gil Riviere as a member of the Laniakea Task Force. The DOT said it made the move because Riviere is no longer an elected official. But even the man replacing him on the task force does not agree with the decision. REP. RICHARD FALE: "I THINK IT WOULD HAVE BEEN GOOD FOR THE COMMUNITY TO HAVE HIM ONBOARD. SO, IN THE INTERESTS OF THE COMMUNITY I THINK IT WAS MAYBE NOT A GOOD IDEA TO DROP GIL FROM THE TASK FORCE." In 2009... state lawmakers approved $1.7 million to study traffic alternatives at Laniakea after funding two years earlier was allowed to lapse. Riviere has criticized the DOT for being painstakingly slow. GIL RIVIERE: "THE MONEY THAT HAS BEEN SET ASIDE FOR THE STUDY WOULD COMPARE DIFFERENT ALTERNATIVES, WHETHER WE WIDEN THIS ROAD, PUT THREE LANES, WIGGLE THE ROAD. ALL THOSE ALTERNATIVES ARE SUPPOSED TO BE PART OF THE STUDY, AND THAT UNFORTUNATELY HASN'T BEGUN YET." The DOT says an analysis of traffic alternatives for Laniakea is in quote a "preliminary phase." The agency hopes the Laniakea Task Force will reach consensus on a single LONG- TERM traffic solution during its meeting Wednesday, which will then be fully analyzed. That meeting takes place at 6:30 at Sunset Beach Elementary. We'll send it back to you.