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Miloliʻi becomes Hawaiʻi's 2nd community subsistence fishing area

Gov. David Ige, Board of Land and Natural Resources Chair Suzanne Case and community members pose for a picture after the governor signed administrative rules for the Miloliʻi Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area.
Courtesy Hawaiʻi DLNR
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Gov. David Ige, First Lady Dawn Ige, Department of Land and Natural Resources Chair Suzanne Case and community members pose for a picture after the governor signed administrative rules for the Miloliʻi Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area.

Gov. David Ige signed administrative rules this week to make Miloliʻi on the Big Island the state’s second Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area.

The state Legislature designated 18 miles of coastal water on either side of the rural fishing community as a CBSFA back in 1994.

Since then, the community, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources and other organizations have worked to establish rules to ensure abundant stocks of priority species and high-quality fishing now and into the future.

“When I started as chair, part of my very strong motivation was my belief that community-based rules, in cooperation with the government, is the way," DLNR Chair Suzanne Case said at the signing.

"It's the way where we can combine our past and present and future in a way that is collaborative and takes advantage of everything that we collectively and individually know. It's a very powerful tool," Case said.

Laila Kaupu, a fifth generation Miloli‘i fisher, was one of the prime movers behind the CBSFA initiative and headed up the community group Kalanihale, which was instrumental in the development of the rules.

The first CBSFA was established in Hāʻena on Kauaʻi in 2015.

david ige snorkeling milolii
Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources
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Gov. David Ige snorkeling in Miloliʻi on a visit to sign administrative rules to make the coastline the second Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area in Hawaiʻi. (Aug. 2, 2022)

“We need young people to carry this work forward and encourage other communities to create community-based subsistence fishing areas for the benefit and future of the entire state. Miloli‘i is a shining example of how we can all work together for the benefit of our marine resources, our keiki and our kupuna," Ige said in a statement.

The governor and First Lady Dawn Ige also went on a boat tour and snorkeled in the area.

“It’s beautiful being out in the ocean and being able to see the coral colonies. It’s a spectacular day," he said.

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