The state is giving Maui residents more time to nominate people who they think should serve on the “navigation team” to guide the largest effort to manage the island’s nearshore waters in recent history.

Maui County locator map

The Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources earlier this fall launched the first community meetings as part of Holomua Marine 30×30, a state-led initiative to effectively manage marine resources by establishing at least 30% of each island’s waters as a network of marine management areas by 2030.

In a news release Tuesday, state officials said they’re extending the deadline until Dec. 31 for residents to apply for the Maui team that will help the government decide what and where should be managed. Once selected, the team will be made up of about 20 people; so far, the state has received about 70 applications.

A team of about 20 Maui residents will be chosen to help the state manage the island’s nearshore waters. Marina Riker/Civil Beat/2022

Management areas are sections of ocean that are governed by rules on the way people can use marine life — for example, size and catch limits, rules on gear type and restrictions on what species they can take. Right now, about 2% of Maui’s nearshore waters fall under that status.

“Today, we see that the fish, coral, and other resources that are central to our livelihoods, culture, health and island lifestyle are not as healthy and abundant as they once were,” DLNR said in the release. “This initiative will be working closely with communities from each island to develop marine resource management solutions that support sustainable fishing practices.”

Residents have until the end of this year to apply. For more information and to find the link for the application, click here.

Civil Beat’s coverage of Maui County is supported in part by grants from the Nuestro Futuro Foundation and the Fred Baldwin Memorial Foundation.

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