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New group to work on re-opening Haiku stairsUPDATED 6:04 PM HST Jul 07, 2014Video Transcript
The clock is ticking and in 90 days, we may know the future of the Stairway to Heaven. Good evening, I'm Paula Akana. Councilman Ikaika Anderson announced the formation of working group today. The 10-member group will come up with recommendation s on how to possibly re-open the popular Windward side attraction. KITV4's Andrew Pereira has out top story at 5... Andrew? Paula, after years of back and forth on what to do about access to the stairs, another round of discussions is underway. The Haiku Stairs working groups has representatives from various landowners, including nearby residents, the Board of Water Supply, the Department of Hawaiian Homelands and Kamehameha Schools. Councilman Anderson hopes the working group can come up with a solution to keep the Stairway to Heaven open, but if they don't, demolishing it could be a possibility. "IF WE CAN'T REOPEN AND WE'RE NOT GOING TO REOPEN FOR THE FORESEEABLE FUTURE, I DON'T SEE AN ATERNATIVE UNLESS WE CAN REOPEN." "IT WILL BE ABSOLUTE TRAGEDY, ABSOLUTE TRAGEDY IF THE STAIRS ARE REMOVED. THERE'S SUCH HISTORIC SIGNIFICANCE - IT'S A GEM. NOT ONLY FOR THE WINDWARD SIDE, BUT FOR THE WHOLE OF HAWAII." Recently a group of landowners confronted hikers at the entrance of the stairs and turned them around before they could trespass. The city pays $70-thousand dollars a year to staff a security guard at the Stairway to Heaven. However the guard is not there 24 hours a day. Paula?