The legislation will make it possible for homeowners to get paid to build accessory dwelling units on their properties.

The Maui County Council recently passed a bill that provides grants of up to $100,000 to help build attached or detached accessory dwelling units.

The bill is an effort to promote development of ohana units — also known as accessory dwelling units, or ADUs — to boost the availability of affordable housing on Maui, where the median price of a home is more than $1 million.

Council Chair Alice Lee said the bill modifies criteria for tapping into the county’s Homeowner Programs Revolving Fund.

“My colleagues and I consider housing a top priority and the ʻOhana Assistance Program is part of our effort to meet essential housing needs of Maui County residents,” said Lee in a news release. “We’ve received numerous inquiries about the program, and I look forward to seeing new accessory dwelling units to assist with our housing crisis.”

Makawao in Upcountry Maui, July 7, 2023. (Nathan Eagle/Civil Beat/2023)
The council passed a bill last week to incentivize homeowners to build accessory dwelling units. (Nathan Eagle/Civil Beat/2023)

The council revised the bill to support those who recently acquired a home and would like to build an accessory dwelling unit, said Lee, who holds the council seat for the Wailuku-Waihee-Waikapu residency area.

The Ohana Assistance Program is a pilot project, meaning it could be reviewed or revised in the future.

Civil Beat’s coverage of Maui County is supported in part by a grant from the Nuestro Futuro Foundation.

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