HONOLULU — The Honolulu notarial office, which is in charge of verifying financial documents, has received a $5.3 million request from the city to help with an ongoing funding crisis.
The Honolulu Police Officers’ Association said it will fund the Honolulu office with its own money starting in 2019.
“We want to help the Honolulu Notary Office get its finances in order,” said Mike Nesbitt, the association’s executive director.
Nesbtt said the city has made “significant” changes to its contracting process in recent years.
In 2016, the Honolulu City Council approved $4.8 million in funding for the Honolulu Office notary.
That money was set aside to help pay for an executive director, three staff members and two notaries, among other things.
Since then, however, the funding has dried up, forcing the city notary to work in “a constant state of limbo,” Nesbalitt said.
And in the past two months, he said, the office has had to scramble to hire additional staff members to keep up with the demand.
At the same time, the state Legislature has given Honolulu more funding for notary work.
The Honolulu Office Notary Service, or HONOS, received $5 million last year.
HONOS is part of a $14.9 million budget that includes $2.9 billion for public safety.
Hawaii has also received $2 million in General Fund dollars to help cover the costs of the Honolulu police department.
State Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Honolulu, said the state is obligated to help Honolulu’s notary service.
De Leon said he will ask the Legislature to allocate additional money for the service.
“We can’t let this go to waste, especially as this city continues to struggle,” he said.