Residents have been rallying against the Public Land Development Corporation or PLDC for months. On Monday, Hawaii lawmakers voted on a bill that could kill the new state department.
For the past six months, many have complained about the formation of the PLDC.
"I will not have a dictator agency in this stupid state," said one upset resident at a meeting in Hilo last August.
The state office was set up in 2012 to develop public lands and generate revenue for the Department of Land and Natural resources. What it has generated instead is a lot of anger and distrust by residents.
"Is this what we want to do, steal our future and steal the public lands?" asked Big Island resident Margaret Wille.
Over the weekend, almost all the testimony during a house hearing called for lawmakers to get rid of the development corporation, which aims to create public private partnerships to improve communities.
"Lets get down to just repealing the PLDC," said Maui resident Mahina Martin.
Lawmakers listened but did not pass any measures, either to repeal the PLDC or make changes to it.
"I had hoped people would come with an argument in favor of the PLDC, so we could salvage it, but I didn't hear that at all," said Rep. Cindy Evans, the chair of the Water and Land Committee.
Instead lawmakers got the message loud and clear.