Via the Star Bulletin (and thanks to Keahi Pelayo)

Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) is hosting public meetings to change the State Land use rules. The revisions have some environmental organizations concerned. Others, like me, are concerned because whenever the government makes changes, they usually do so to someone else's harm.

The shoreline setback, a line past which no structures or coastal alterations are allowed, would be increased to 40 feet from the certified shoreline, plus 70 times the average annual coastal erosion rate.  The city and University of Hawaii is working on establishing that rate.

Hopefully the rules won't become more restrictive and difficult for owners to obey.

Here are sine proposed GROUND RULES The state is proposing a number of changes and additions to rules in its administration of conservation lands, last updated in 1994:

» The shoreline setback line would be established based on a distance from the certified shoreline of 40 feet, plus 70 times the average annual coastal erosion rate. Shoreline setbacks were not defined in the old rules.

» Some land management activities on conservation land would be allowed without permits. These would include routine weed control, clearing of understory, planting of rare plants, fence maintenance and clearing sand and silt from stream mouths, canals or drainage pipes.

» A number of fees would increase. These would be for board permit applications (from a maximum of $2,000 to $2,500), public hearing fees ($250 to $500), departmental permit applications ($50 to $250) and temporary variance applications ($100 to $250).

» Standard conditions for permits would include a rule prohibiting hampering religious practices of native Hawaiians on conservation land. The conditions would also prohibit artificial light from pointing toward the ocean. All exterior lighting must be shielded to "protect the night sky."

» Rules would specify that only people with property interest, residency on the land or anyone directly affected by a permit can appeal. Rules now state that "any person" can appeal to the department.