The City and County of Honolulu,   and Waste Management of Hawaii, Inc.



On January 31, 2006, a Notice and Finding of Violation was issued to the City and County of Honolulu and their Waimanalo Gulch Landfill operator, Waste Management of Hawaii, Inc. regarding violations occurring at the site over the past two years.  (links to the notice follow this report).     On February 13, 2006, Waste Management's attorney filed a formal written request with the State Department of Health for an administrative hearing to contest the Notice.   Since then, approximately one year later, there still has not been a hearing regarding this matter, and violations are still occurring at the landfill.  Instead of pursuing collection of the fines, the Dept. of Health has allowed Waste Management to engage in a settlement workout "behind closed doors".  

Because the workout sessions are closed to the public, the public does not know what is going on, and does not have the opportunity to participate or be heard from regarding this matter.    The closed door hearings violate "transparency of government", and the public's right to be informed.   

Based on our discussions with the Dept. of Solid and Hazardous Waste Management, we believe the closed hearings are allowing the participants to tailor their data to fit  the workout.    Furthermore, Waste Management of Hawaii, Inc. has trumped up bribery charges and allegations of improper behavior against one of their ex-employees who, they say,  "improperly spent money on one or more Health Department officials".      While we abhor any act of government employees or managers taking stipends or bribes,  and believe this matter should be thoroughly investigated, the timing of the complaint is suspect.  We believe it was intended as a smoke screen to create a diversion from the fact that violations  have been occurring for the past three years, and continue to this day.  We also learned that Waste Management's complaint against its employee only came about after the employee refused to come back and serve as a consultant in order to answer the charges made in the Notice of Violation.

Following is a copy of the notice:



The Notice of Violation