Business Manager’s Message
Valentino B. Ceria
I would like to begin by taking a moment to recognize Brother Lovell Kaopua, Sr., who passed away on January 26, 2023. He was Head Training Coordinator for our Apprenticeship Program, and later became our Vice President from January 1, 1998, Business Agent and Union Trustee, up until 2006. He retired on January 1, 2007 and passed away as a life-time retiree member. Brother Lovell Kaopua, Sr. will always be remembered for his dedication to the Union and his many contributions, especially in the Training Program.
Currently, we are working on revising the Local 675 Constitution and By-Laws. The current official name is: Constitution, By-Laws, Working Rules and Safety Rules and Regulations of Local 675 of the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada AFL-CIO. The local By-Laws was last amended on May 5, 1980. We are following the United Association Constitution and the revision requirements established by the UA. A local By-Laws Committee will also be formed to review the revision before the By-Laws are presented to the General Membership.
Last month I attended a meeting with Governor Josh Green at the State Capitol along with the Hawaii Building and Construction Trades affiliate leaders. Governor Green informed us about his roadmap for the year. He has committed $1 billion dollars investment in housing, renovations for public housing units, providing state rental subsidies for low-income families and boosting affordable housing financing. The housing funding, which will need legislative approval, will also deliver a state match to the city’s affordable housing programs to incentivize the creation of more affordable housing units in Honolulu. Governor Green also noted that in his Affordable Housing initiative, he has some projects that he would like Labor to review and comment on for a Project Labor Agreement.
Demand for housing is still high especially in Honolulu. For the last couple of years, new housing construction have kept us in business. The growing Ward Village/Kakaako community has already completed six mixed-use residential buildings – Waiea, Anaha, Aeo, Ke Kilohana, Aalii and, most recently, Koula. Victoria Place and The Park Ward Village are currently in development. The Howard Hughes 60-acre master planned community broke ground on Ulana Ward Village, which will be the ninth mixed-use residential tower.
We also have a few upcoming senior living complexes in downtown Honolulu. One is the Kokua Senior Living Complex on Alakea and South Beretania Streets, with Hawaiian Dredging as the general contractor. The other is the Haleuai’olu Senior Residences on River Street, with general contractor, Unlimited Construction.
Future state projects include the construction of the new stadium after demolishing the old Aloha Stadium. We got a chance to be in the Aloha Stadium Hospitality Room when we hosted the breakfast for our members and their families at the Great Aloha Run on Presidents Day. Everyone there had a great time and enjoyed the Hawaiian Food. Some of the pictures are on display in this newsletter.
As for the Union’s Imi Loa Foundation Scholarship Program, if you have any of your children or grandchildren interested in applying for the scholarship, have them go to our website at www.plumbershawaii.com to see if they qualify and download the application form. The United Association Scholarship and the Hawaii State AFL-CIO Scholarship applications are also available. Click here for more information.
As always, stay informed, stay healthy and be safe!