For many years, the Maui Police Commission met in the “Chief’s Conference Room,” a special chamber in the Maui Police Department’s imposing Wailuku headquarters. The room was not generally accessible to the public, and anyone who wasn’t a cop needed to provide identification and get a special escort through the station to get to the ostensibly public monthly Police Commission meetings. Needless to say, this had a chilling effect for anyone who wanted to see the commission in action.
But for the last few months, the commission has been holding hearings away from the Wailuku station. Instead, the commission held its October meeting at the Lahaina Civic Center and its November and December meetings at the new police station in Kihei. And this Wednesday, Jan. 21, the commission will try something even more radical–meeting in Laulima Room 106 at the University of Hawaii’s Maui College campus (click here for the meeting agenda).
“The change in venue comes in response to an ongoing request from members of the public who say they would like commission meetings to be held outside of the Wailuku police station,” states a Jan. 15 County of Maui news release. “This meeting is part of a pilot program to encourage more public attendance.”
That’s great, but if the commission really wants to boost public attendance, they’ll start doing stuff like providing real opposition to the department’s annual requests for more militarized firepower.
Anyway, the commission’s next meeting, scheduled for 9:30am on Feb. 18, will take place at the Kihei police station.
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