Maui News is reporting that Maui County population is growing fastest in the state at 5.3 percent in the last five years giving a total of 163,019 at the end of 2014.
Dick Mayer pointed out that this is putting a strain on Maui’s infrastructure. Also these numbers don’t reflect the growing numbers of visitors.
“In addition to residents, we have a high de facto population growth rate of people who are here temporarily in hotels, time shares, vacation rentals . . . so the total population is closer to 220,000 on an average day in Maui County,” Mayer said.
Maui News pointed out that this does not count the growing homeless population which could be over 2,000. They went on to say:
“Assistance providers have said low-income housing is one of the biggest hurdles to getting people off the streets. The average price of a house in Maui County was $523,700 for the period from 2009 to 2013. The median gross rent paid for Maui units over the same period was $1,291, second only to the City and County of Honolulu’s median rent of $1,467 per month. Gross rent is the base rent plus the cost of utilities.”
There are many low income housing projects approved but not being built. And the “low income” housing that is projected is often priced well above what low income people can actually afford.