Chapter 27 – Getting Settled
Now that you have chosen to live in The Valley Isle, it’s time to take care of the basics. Getting the simple things out of the way, like hooking up your utilities, registering your car and officially changing your address, help you stress less and relax so you can start enjoying your new community.
Maui residents have a few choices to make when it comes to the basic utilities they use in their homes. While the options for natural gas and electricity are slim, there are a few more options for Internet, telephone and television service.
In Hawaii, the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission, puc.hawaii.gov, 808-984-8182 is tasked with ensuring that regulated companies safely and efficiently provide their customers with adequate and reliable services at reasonable rates. If you have a dispute with your utilities company, you should seek to resolve it with them first. If not, contact the commission.
One of your first steps in getting settled in your new home will be to get your electricity turned on. Hawaii Electric (also known as Maui Electric, Hawai’i Electric Light) provides approximately 95% of the Hawaii with its power. The cost of electricity in Hawaii is generally higher than the rest of the U.S. mainland because the electric system is completely independent. Visit www.heco.com or call (808) 871-9777 to get your service set up.
If your home requires natural gas for heating, cooling or to operate a gas range or other appliances, you will need to contact Hawaii Gas, www.hawaiigas.com, (808)535-5933 to set up service.
Maui’s area code, like the rest of Hawaii, is 808. This area code covers the state out to Midway Island and Wake Island.
Both AT&T and Verizon, listed below, offer cell phone service. Sprint also offers good coverage on the islands.
- Sprint: www.sprint.com
- Verizon: verizonwireless.com
- AT&T: www.att.com
Cell phone service will start around $40 with a smartphone, which is the most common option that cell phone companies offer. The price will increase as you add data packages, phones and minutes. Family plans are increasingly popular, since many families have chosen to give up their home phone for cell phone service. Most companies offer a free or heavily discounted phone when you sign up for their service.
Another popular option for people who don’t use their cell phones regularly is the pay-as-you-go plan. Under these plans, you can pay around $20 for 200 minutes. Usually, you have to add minutes to the phone every month in order for the minutes to roll over, or every three months to keep your phone number. Conditions vary with each cell phone company.
Time Warner Cable, oceanic.com, the area’s prominent provider of cable television, has a solid hold on the market for high-speed Internet service as well. Time Warner offers combinations of bundled cable TV, high-speed Internet and telephone services. Each is more expensive separately. Hawaii Telecom www.hawaiiantel.com also offers competitive rates for high-speed Internet, television and telephone service.
Water and Sewer
Maui’s Department of Water Supply mauiwater.org, (808) 270-7816 provides the county with water service. As an added convenience, you can review and pay your water bill online through the Department of Water Supply. Review mauiwater.org in case of additional inquiries. Water restrictions imposed by the county are common in times of drought, and usually limiting outdoor watering to evenings and mornings on certain days of the week. Violating these restrictions can lead to the removal of your water meter and a $50 fine, up to $500 for each violation.
Maui’s Wastewater Reclamation Division provides the county with sewer service. In areas where the water system is not operated and maintained by the county, the monthly fee per dwelling unit is $51.70 for a single family residence, and $42.10 for a multi-family dwelling. For billing questions, call (808) 270-7417. To report sewer spills, call (808) 243-7465.
Garbage and Recycling
The county of Maui picks up recyclables and garbage from homes throughout the island. Maui’s Solid Waste Division, (808) 270-7875, www.co.maui.hi.us/Index.aspx?NID=1017 provides curbside garbage pickup and disposal in six major districts: Central Maui, Makawao, Lahaina, Molokai, Lanai and Hana. Residential collection service fees are $216 for a full year’s service.
In South Maui, beginning in August 2012, the Solid Waste Division began distributing three cans for residences as phase 1 of 3 Can Plan: one for green waste (yard clippings), recycling and garbage.
For additional questions about how to dispose of certain items or materials, pick up schedule and a list of recycling facilities, refer to Maui County’s Solid Waste Division’s website.
Getting a license and registering your car seems to require a new sheet over paper every few years, and almost always requires waiting in line. You may drive in Hawaii with a valid driver’s license issued by another state if you are 18 years of age or older. To drive legally, you will also need to purchase insurance in the state of Hawaii.
Getting ready to drive will mean spending some quality time at the Hawaii Department of Motor Vehicles, (808) 270-7363, www.mauicounty.gov/index.aspx?NID=1328. You can find a DMV office or see a full list of the types of identification that are accepted to get a driver’s license or register a car at the DMV website. To save some time, you can download forms you need so you can fill them out before you get to the DMV.
If you don’t want a driver’s license, but still want an ID card, you can get one at any DMV location. Beginning on January 2, 2013, the state of Hawaii requires that you require documentary proof of legal name, date of birth, social security number, legal presence and proof of principal residence address in person. If the applicant is between the ages of 10 and 14, a parent or legal guardian must authorize his or her forms. Visit http://hidot.hawaii.gov/hawaiistateid/ for more information about the Hawaii State ID Card.
Every car in Maui needs to complete the registration, whether it is new, from out of state or county, or needs to be re-registered. Each situation has a different process and different set of forms. You can find your necessary forms based on your needs through Maui’s Motor Vehicle & Licensing department: http://www.mauicounty.gov/index.aspx?NID=1508. The fees will be determined by the customer service representative at the time of registration. Registration must be updated annually, and fees are determined by the vehicle’s weight and usage.
In Hawaii, you must have the minimum of the following insurance amounts:
You must have a minimum of the following insurance amounts:
- $20,000/40,000 Bodily Injury Liability
- $10,000 Personal Injury Protection
- $10,000 Property Damage Liability
- $20,000/40,000 Underinsured Motorist (optional)
- $20,000/40,000 Uninsured Motorist (optional)
Parking is at a premium in Maui, especially in Lahaina, where traffic makes finding free and paid parking difficult. There are plenty of paid parking lots and decks around the island, and most businesses, stores and restaurants validate parking.
Broadcast and print media
Maui has a handful of television stations available, and even more possibilities if you elect to purchase services through cable or satellite providers.
Cable and internet access
- Oceanic (Time Warner Cable), (808) 643-2100, www.oceanic.com
- Comcast Cable (888) 231-9398, www.comcast.com
- Direct TV, 1 (800) 515-7799, directtv.com
- Dish Network TV, (888) 900-7759, directllcservice.com
Island of Maui Television Stations
- Channel 27: K27DW (MyNetworkTV, Fox Affiliate)
- Channel 51: KAUI-LP (Religious)
- Channel 61: KAMN-LP (TBN)
Maui radio listeners can access a wide variety of local and national programming through stations based in Maui and beyond. Online streaming varies by station, and can be found on the station’s website.
- KMVI 550: ESPN 550, Sports/Talk
- KNUI 900: News/Talk
- KAOI 1110: News/Talk/Sports. (Also 96.7 FM).
- 1570 KUAU: Religious and Conservative Talk
- 88.5 KAKU FM: Paniolo, Country and Hawaiian Music
- 88.9 KOPO FM: “Radio Opio”
- 89.7 KIPM FM: Hawaii Public Radio: News/Talk/World Music/Jazz National Public Radio + BBC (simulcast KIPO FM from Oahu)
- 89.9 K210CM: Alternative Christian Music
- 90.7 KKUA FM: Hawaii Public Radio/Classical Music, simulcasts KHPR 88.1 FM from Oahu.
- 91.5 KEAO FM: ”Mana’o Radio” Eclectic / Free Form
- 92.5 KLHI FM: “Native 92.5 – Maui’s Island Music Station”
- 93.5 KPOA FM: Hawaiian Music, Maui Style
- 94.3 KDLX FM: ”94X – Old Skool Urban Oldies”
- 95.1 KAOI FM: ”All About the Music” – Adult Alternative Rock (also at 97.7 FM)
- 97.3 KRKH FM: ”Maui’s Rock Station”
- 98.3 KJMD FM: ”Da Jam 98.3 – Hawaii’s Hot Hits” (Rhythmic CHR)
- 98.9 KIOM FM: Contemporary Christian Music – Molokai – King’s Cathedral (LP)
- 99.9 KJKS FM: ”99.9 Kiss FM: Maui’s Best Mix of the 80s, 90s, & Today” Contemporary Hits
- 102.3 KMKK FM: ”Radio Imua” – Hawaiian & Island Music
- 103.7 KNUQ FM: ”Q 103.7, The Rhythm of the Islands” – also on 103.3 FM
- 104.7 KONI FM: Greatest Hits of the 1960s and 70s
- 105.5 KPMW FM: “Wild 105: All the Hits on One Station” – CHR / Rhythmic Top 40
- 106.5 KRYL FM: “Maui’s Rooster Country Station”
- 107.5 KHEI FM: “Island 107.5 – Hawaiian & Island Music”
Newspapers and Magazines
The Maui area has several periodicals and news sources to choose from. Many publish print editions, but most information can be found on the publications’ websites and social media outlets.
- The Maui News: Published three days a week with local and state news, sports, classifieds and entertainment. www.mauinews.com
- Lahaina News, lahainanews.com
- Maui No Ka Oi Magazine – A celebration of and for the people who love Maui www.mauimagazine.net
- On Maui! Magazine – The comprehensive guide to Maui’s art and entertainment scene. www.mauitime.com
- Maui Vision – A guide to natural living. www.mauivision.net
- Maui Family Magazine – Caters to families with children. www.mauifamilymagazine.com .
A number of blogs are cropping up about local news and flavor in Maui. Blogs tend to come and go rather quickly, but here is a sampling of what people are talking about in Maui at the moment:
- Maui Jungalow, www.mauijungalow.com
- A Maui Blog, wwww.amauiblog.com
- The Maui Goodness, wwww.mauigoodness.com
- Maui Windsurfing, www.mauiwindsurfing.net
- K’aanapali Dreamin’: Sharing the Magic of Maui, www.kaanapalidreamin.com
If you are moving to Maui from another county or state or have legally changed your name, you are required to re-register, even if you are already a registered voter. Be prepared to present a valid photo ID and proof of residence. You can find the application for voter registration, known as the Wikiwiki Voter Registration and Permanent Absentee form in/at: city/county clerk’s offices, Hawaii state libraries, the Office of Elections website (www.hawaii.gov/elections), satellite city halls, state agencies, U.S Post Offices and phone directories. You may also register when apply for your Hawaii driver’s license at the DMV.
In Hawaii, you do not have to be a registered member of a political party to participate in primary elections.
Contact the Hawaii Office of Elections at (808) 453-VOTE or visit http://hawaii.gov/elections for all the information you need about elections, including polling locations, upcoming elections, information on candidates and more.
The state of Hawaii operates six libraries in Maui. A full list of libraries and relevant contact information is available at http://hawaii.sdp.sirsi.net. All branches offer computer access, book clubs, WiFi and programs for children and adults. Some locations offer downloadable eBooks on loan and you can renew library items online.
You can apply for a library card at any Hawaii public library or download the application form on the Hawaii State Public System’s website. The initial card is free for Hawaii residents, and cards are free for military personnel and their dependents.
To be safe, always allow at least 6 weeks to get a passport, and at least three weeks and $60 (plus shipping) for expedited service.
The U.S. State Department, 877-4-USA-PASSPORT http://travel.state.gov/passport/ issues passports from its regional offices. You can also apply in person at some area post offices. Forms are available at these locations and at the U.S. Passport website:
- Wailuku Post Office, 250 Imi Kala St., Wailuku HI, 96793, (808)244-1653
- Kihei Post Office, 1254 S. Kihei Road, Kihei HI, 96753, (808) 879-1987
- Lahaina Main Post Office, 1760 Honoapilani Highway, Lahaina, HI, 96761, (808) 661-0904
- Makawao Post Office, 1075 Makawao Avenue, Makawao, HI, 96768, (808) 572-0019
- Kula Post Office, 4450 Kula Highway, Kula HI, 96790, (808) 876-1056
- Haiku Post Office, 770 Haiki Road, Haiku HI, 96708, (808) 575-2614
The Honolulu regional passport agency does not require any travel plans to apply, although you still need an appointment and are required to pay the expedite fee.
- 300 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite I-330, Honolulu, HI 96850. 1-877-487-2778.
If you are applying for the first time, are under 16 (or were when your current passport was issued), lost your passport or have changed your name, you need to apply in person. Otherwise, you can send in the forms and documents by mail. Generally, you will need a birth certificate, approved photo ID and two passport photos.
Your pet will likely find Maui County as hospitable as you do, as long as your landlord and neighbors agree. You’ll want to know how to keep your pet legal, safe and entertained in its new home. For truly unusual and unique pets, you should contact local animal control to make sure that your pet is as welcome as you are. Maui County’s Humane Society is a great resource for pet owners.
Maui County Code 6.04.020 requires that all dogs over the age of 4 months have a current license. Licenses are valid for two years, and can be obtained at the Maui Humane Society or your local DMV. As with many counties, it is significantly cheaper to license a spayed/neutered dog. The licensing fee for an unaltered dog is $31, and it costs $7 to license a spayed/neutered dog. Cats are not required to have a license, but it is recommended that you outfit your cat with an ID tag, in case your cat wanders away from home. Visit http://www.mauihumanesociety.org/content/501347c9b09f4/Licensing.html for additional information.
Maui County Code 6.04.020 also requires that your dog must be under restraint at all times. Whether by way of a kennel, fenced yard, your residence or a leash, restraining a dog keeps it and the community safe. Dogs must also be leashed at all Maui County beaches and parks, and restrained (by a cross-tether or a kennel) if it is riding in the back of an open pickup truck.
SPCA Maui (and the Maui Humane Society provide low-cost spaying and neutering services for pets. Your veterinarian can also perform the procedure.
Acquiring a pet
If you’re ready to adopt a new member of the family, there are plenty of organizations that have animals awaiting new owners. A good place to start with any pet search is with local shelters, where knowledgeable staff can find the kind of pet you are looking for, or point you in the right direction. Websites like www.adoptapet.com and craigslist can also be helpful.
- The Maui County Humane Society. (808) 877-3680, www.mauihumanesociety.org
- Hawaii Animal Rescue. www.hawaiianimalrescue.org
If you are bringing your pet to Maui from a place other than Hawaii, it will have to undergo Hawaii’s legally required quarantine program. Hawaii is the only state that has never had an indigenous case of rabies. According to the state of Hawaii’s Animal Quarantine webpage, the current law requires that dogs, cats and carnivores complete either the 120-day or 5-day-or-less rabies quarantine. The law also requires that entire cost of the rabies quarantine program be paid by the users of the quarantine facility, and not by tax dollars. Pets arriving from the British Isles, Australia, Guam and New Zealand are exempt from rabies quarantine. The state of Hawaii’s Animal Quarantine Information page http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/ai/aqs/animal-quarantine-information-page/ is a thorough source of information about these quarantine laws. Contact the state of Hawaii’s Animal Quarantine Branch at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (808) 483-7151 with additional questions.
Maui’s new dog parks provide dogs a safe space to run off some steam and socialize with their fellow furry friends.
- Upcountry Dog Park (under construction), 801 Makawao Avenue, Makawao HI, 96768
- Keopuolani Dog Park: 700 Halia Nakoa St., Wailuku, Maui, HI 96793
Crime and safety
Should you need to contact law enforcement, Maui County is served by the county police department. In the event of an emergency, always call 911 for police, fire and ambulance. For all other cases, here is a list of non-emergency numbers for the Maui Police Department:
- Non-Emergency and Information: (808)244-6400
- Investigative Services: (808) 244-6410
- In lieu of a sheriff and sheriff’s department, Maui County has a Chief of Police, Gary A. Yabuta, (808) 244-6300.
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