Highlights of HRS 174C - The Water Code

--Provided by Hawai`i's Thousand Friends' PROTECT Project and OHELO Students


Under Hawaii Rev. Stat. §174c - State Water Code -

...the Waters of the State are held for the benefit of the citizens of the state. Water can be used for agricultural and commercial uses but must also be preserved for the customary uses of Native Hawaiians. The waters must also be used in a way that preserves ecological balance, scenic beauty, drinking water, and public recreational use.

The Commission on Water Resource Management designates which areas will be water management areas. These areas will be controlled by the commission in a way that serves the public interest.

When a recommendation is made to designate an area as a water management area, there will be a public hearing. This hearing must provide the following information:
1. A description of the land area proposed to be designated in terms of appropriate legal subdivisions and tax map keys;
2. The purpose of the public hearing;
3. The time, date and location of the public hearing where oral and/or written testimony may be submitted and heard. The notice must be given once each week for three successive weeks in the county and the last notice shall not be less then ten days nor more than thirty days before the set date for the hearing.


See Hawaii Rev. Stat. §174c-13 Citizen Complaints.

You have the right to make a complaint to the Commission on Water Resource Management. If you file a complaint with the commission that any other person is wasting or polluting water or is making a diversion, withdrawal, impoundment, consumptive use of waters or any other activity the commission must make an investigation, take appropriate action, and notify you of the result.