Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New Director for Hawaii State Office of Planning

Mr. Abbey Seth Mayer, a community-based planner on Moloka'i, was nominated by Gov. Linda Lingle as director of the state Office of Planning according to the Governor's Press Release. He now must be confirmed by the Senate.

According to the press release:

Mayer is currently the executive director for Ke Aupuni Lokahi, the Moloka‘i Enterprise Community (MEC). The MEC is part of the federal U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Empowerment Zone / Enterprise Community Program, which assists economically depressed regions through federal funding and community-based planning and development projects. Mayer serves as the lead project coordinator for 22 community-based priority projects that fall under the Moloka‘i Enterprise Community.

Prior to joining the MEC in 2006, Mayer was executive director and plant manager for the Moloka‘i Livestock Cooperative. In this capacity, he managed and oversaw the financial and operational responsibilities for the cooperative, including developing a comprehensive business plan for the revitalization of the cattle industry on

Mayer previously was the resident manager and contractor for the Eddy Foundation, Black Kettle Farm, a private land trust in Essex, New York. He also served as foreman and brokerage manager for Dutch Wharf Boat Yard and Marina in Branford, Conn.

He has served as a guest lecturer on community-based planning for the University of Hawai‘i’s Department of Urban and Regional Planning.

A graduate of Yale University, Mayer recently completed the Executive Accounting Program at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.

Mayer replaces Laura H. Thielen, who was confirmed as director of the Department of Land and Natural Resources. He starts his new position on February 20.

Under HRS §225M-2, office of planning shall gather, analyze, and provide information to the governor to assist in the overall analysis and formulation of state policies and strategies to provide central direction and cohesion in the allocation of resources and effectuation of state activities and programs and effectively address current or emerging issues and opportunities. Specific duties outlined under HRS §225M-2 include state comprehensive planning and program coordination; strategic planning; planning coordination and cooperation; implementing a statewide planning and geographic information system (GIS); land use planning; coastal and ocean policy management; regional planning and studies; and to the extent practicableensuring that state planning is consistent with regional, national, and international planning.

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