Hawaii governor’s first budget after Maui wildfire includes funds for recovery and fire prevention

The federal government is covering the expenses for much of Lahaina’s clean-up and emergency housing. Green said that while it will cost more than $5 billion to recover from the fire, the state’s share will be about $500 million.

The governor’s proposals are for the fiscal year beginning July 1. Lawmakers will consider the proposals when they draft the state’s budget during the legislative session set to start on Jan. 17.

The proposals include:

1. $200 million for anticipated Maui insurance claim payments

2. $186 million for other recovery costs as they arise

3. $10 million for fire and emergency response equipment for the state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources, which is responsible for state forests, with $7.4 million to go to the same department for fire response and prevention efforts

4. 20 positions to work on firebreaks, fire assessments and wildfire matters at the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency

5. $33 million, mostly from federal funds, to repair and rebuild state highways in Lahaina

In addition to fire response, Green proposed spending $22 million on housing for older adults in Honolulu, $10 million for Hawaii Public Housing Authority building improvements and $30 million in tax breaks for families with children in preschool.