comscore Senate confirms Aila as state land director | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Top News

Senate confirms Aila as state land director

    William Aila Jr. speaks at Halau Ku Mana Charter School at a kickoff celebration of the United Nations International Year of Forests.

The state Senate has confirmed William Aila as chairman of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Senators voted 23-0 today to approve Aila’s nomination, despite concerns that he held aquarium and commercial fishing permits, which could have presented a conflict of interest with his new job as a protector of the state’s environment. Aila has said he’s relinquishing those permits.

Sen. Clayton Hee said Aila should have disclosed the permits during his confirmation hearing before the Water, Land and Housing Committee.

Hee also questioned whether Aila adequately considered protection of Native Hawaiian burials before approving Honolulu’s rail project.

But committee chairman Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz said today he is confident Aila will be a responsible steward of the department.

Aila is a Native Hawaiian advocate and previously served as Waianae harbormaster.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature
Comments have been disabled for this story...

Scroll Up