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Governor releases $7.8M for agriculture improvements


Gov. Neil Abercrombie has released more than $7.8 million for various capital improvement projects (CIP) that invest in Hawaii’s local agriculture industry and upgrade the state’s water irrigation infrastructure.

“Safeguarding our water supplies is a high-priority natural resource goal of this administration,” Abercrombie said. “These projects will upgrade the state’s aging agricultural infrastructure to create a more reliable water supply for many of the farmers and ranchers that support Hawaii’s economy.”

Allotment of funds for the following projects, identified by state legislators, has been approved by the Governor:

* $2,500,000 – Waiahole Water System Improvements, Oahu

Construction funds for improvements including the replacement of up to four siphons and valves to minimize water losses and significantly improve the reliability of the system. The existing metal siphons on the water system are more than 95 years old and are severely corroded.

* $1,500,000 – Upcountry Maui Watershed Project, Maui

Construction funds to install a new dual agricultural water pipeline on the upper slope of Kula. The pipeline will provide an adequate and consistent water supply to existing farms and relief to the domestic water treatment requirements by reducing the quantity of water requiring treatment.

* $1,400,000 – Kekaha Ditch Improvements, Kauai

Construction funds to replace a 107-year-old metal siphon. Deterioration over the years has resulted in corrosion of the siphon’s inner walls and leakage at the intake structure.

* $925,000 – Waimanalo Irrigation System Improvements, Oahu

Construction funds to extend the main distribution pipeline. The extended pipeline would replace an unlined open ditch section, minimize water losses due to evaporation and seepage, provide downstream users with equal access to the system’s main distribution pipeline and eliminate time spent maintaining the existing open ditch.

* $750,000 – Galbraith Lands Irrigation System at Lake Wilson, Oahu

Design funds to develop a plan to build a long-term, cost-effective water system that will utilize surface water from Lake Wilson to irrigate the Galbraith land.

* $340,000 – Waimea Irrigation System Improvements, Hawaii Island

Design funds for ditch lining repairs, stabilization and/or relocation of access road, replacement of a water control slide gate, tunnel restoration and other miscellaneous improvements.

* $250,000 – Waimanalo Irrigation System Improvements, Oahu

Design funds for the stabilization of a pipe flume, installation of a fiberglass walkway, burying of above ground water meters and other miscellaneous improvements.

* $200,000 – Molokai Irrigation System Improvements, Molokai

Planning and design funds for the replacement of an aboveground concrete flume with an underground pipeline, structural stabilization of an access bridge, repairs to a 250,000-gallon irrigation water storage tank and burying of aboveground water meters.

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