Ag Subdivision Process

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Internal Process for
Agricultural and Pastoral Homestead Subdivision Requests
Procedure Number


Internal Process for

Agricultural and Pastoral Homestead Subdivision Requests

Procedure Number 05-2013

January 2014

Procedure and Workflow

Subject:           Processing requests from homesteaders to subdivide and transfer a portion of their agricultural or pastoral homestead lots.

Purpose:         To provide procedures for the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands to follow in implementing Hawaii Administrative Rule §10-3-26 (f) Subdivision and transfer of a portion of agricultural or pastoral lots.

Policy:             Agricultural and Pastoral homesteaders who meet the Department’s criteria for subdividing their lot as adopted by the Hawaiian Homes Commission on May 20, 2013 may submit a request to subdivide and transfer a portion of a homestead lease.

Authority:         Hawaii Administrative Rule, Chapter 10, Section 10-3-26 (f) Subdivision and transfer of a portion of agricultural or pastoral lot lease may be permitted upon Hawaiian Homes Commission approval for the remaining term of the lease to any individual who qualifies under the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, 1920 as amended, subject to the following conditions:

(1)   Upon such transfer, each resultant subdivided lot meets Department criteria for designation as an agricultural or pastoral lease;

(2)   The Department shall not be obligated to finance the construction of a residence on any transferred portion;

(3)   Plans for all residences to be constructed on transferred portions of leases shall be submitted to and approved by the Department before construction thereof;

(4)   The Department shall not be obligated to pay for any costs incurred in the processing and obtaining of the County final subdivision;

(5)   The Department shall not be liable for expenses incurred by the lessee for amenities brought to the lot.  The lessee is responsible for the cost of subdivision improvements necessary for compliance with County final subdivision requirements. The Department shall not provide nor be required to provide any amenities except as it may determine in the planned development of its lands; and

(6)   A farm plan shall be required by transferees for all transfers involving the subdivided agricultural or pastoral lots. The farm plan shall be submitted to, reviewed and accepted by the Department. [Eff 7/30/81;am9/24/83; am11/17/84;am and comp 10/26/98](Auth:HHCAct §222)(Imp:HHC Act §208)

Glossary of Terms Associated with Subdivisions

1)      Amenity – Attractive feature of a property that makes the property more pleasant to live in. In easement law, a restraint on the property owner keeping him/her from doing some thing that he/she could do but for the grant or covenant.

2)      Compliance – Conformity in fulfilling official requirements, a homesteader is in harmony or agreement with the rules and laws governing Hawaiian Home Lands (Lease, Act, HAR, County, State and Federal Law)

3)      Criteria – A standard of judging an established rule, by which facts, principles opinions, and conduct are tried in forming a correct judgment respecting them.  The Department’s standard for approving subdivision requests are based on facts developed from first hand inspection of the homestead, a determination of good standing and review of lessee’s compliance with their lease and plans.

4)      Cultivation – encouraging the growth of crops or livestock.

5)      Good Standing – A homesteader is in good standing if they are in compliance with all of their explicit obligations as set forth in their lease, required by the Hawaiian homes Commission Act, or required by Hawaii Administrative Rules Chapter 10.*

6)      Obligation – Law or duty binding the parties to perform their agreement, homesteaders as lessees are bound under their respective leases to engage in agricultural or pastoral activities.  DHHL as lessor retains the right to approve any other agreements relating in any way to the use of agricultural and pastoral lots.

7)      Planned Unit Development – conditional permitted uses provided in zoning ordinances.

8)      Resubdivision – The act of taking an existing subdivision and dividing it even further, for the purposes of County subdivision approval it is the same as a new subdivision.

9)      Standard – General recognition and conformity to an established practice, DHHL rules require that lessees of an Agriculture or Pasture Homestead lease actively cultivate or develop at least two thirds of their homestead at all times.

10)  Subdivision – Division of a homestead lot into two lots to allow the transfer of a portion of the lot to another individual who qualifies under the Act, subject to commission approval for the remaining term of the original lease.

*In the event that the subdivision will bring the homesteader into “Good Standing,” the subdivision application may be considered by the Department.  Should the Department recommend pre-approval to the Commission of such an application, the Department shall inform the Commission as part of the pre-approval recommendation that “Good Standing” is achieved upon completion of the subdivision process.  


A homesteader may initiate a request to subdivide their homestead by submitting the following:

(1)   Homestead Lease Transfer Request HHL Form 0052;

(2)   Agricultural and Pastoral Subdivision Application Form HHL Form 0052a 2013;

(3)   Farm or Ranch plan;

(4)   Any other supporting documents to describe the proposed subdivision; and

(5)   Kumu ‘ohana documents to verify the transferee’s blood quantum.

Applications may be submitted on January 31 or June 30 of each calendar year

Department shall place an Agricultural and Pastoral Subdivision table showing homestead areas that are capable of supporting new subdivisions at each of the district offices to provide advance notice of areas that are eligible for subdivision.

If a Homesteader resides in an area that supports subdivision development then the following procedures apply.

Jobie M.K. Masagatani
Jan. 24, 2014

For more information:

Bob Freitas
HHL Planner
DHHL Planning Office
(808) 620-9484
[email protected]