Mark Zuckerberg announced today through a spokesman that he is “reconsidering” his quiet title lawsuits filed recently against hundreds of owners or potential owners of land on Kauai.
“Based on feedback from the local community, we are reconsidering the quiet title process and discussing how to move forward,” the Facebook CEO said in a statement distributed by Ben LaBolt of the New York-based communications firm The Incite Agency. “We want to make sure we are following a process that protects the interests of property owners, respects the traditions of native Hawaiians, and preserves the environment.”
The decision by Zuckerberg follows criticism from many people, including Kauai residents, the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. and state Rep. Kaniela Ing over eight lawsuits Zuckerberg companies filed Dec. 30 in state court on Kauai against Hawaii families seeking to force them to sell their interest in their family lands or have a judge validate claims that the lands are already owned by Zuckerberg.
The lands in question are 14 parcels of roughly one acre or less that lie within about 700 acres on Kauai’s north shore that Zuckerberg bought in 2014 for around $100 million. The 14 parcels are known as kuleana lands that give their owners access rights over the surrounding property that Zuckerberg wants to make into a secluded home for himself and his wife, Priscilla Chan.
“We love Kauai,” Zuckerberg said in the statement. “We want to be good members of the community and preserve the land for generations to come.”