UH fire recovery efforts continue

University of Hawaiʻi
Lynne Waters, (808) 956-8109
Associate Vice President, External Affairs & University Relations, UH System
Kristen Bonilla, (808) 956-5039
Public Information Officer, External Affairs & University Relations, UH System
Posted: Feb 27, 2012

HONOLULU – The University of Hawai‘i continues to work toward recovery of full functions and services after the Feb. 12, 2012, fire that destroyed a building containing much of the system’s Financial Management Office on the UH Mānoa lower campus. The following is an update on key areas of interest to the general public.
Documents and Information
Although fiscal and accounting information was stored or exists electronically in off-site secured servers, much of the paperwork associated with in-process transactions was lost or damaged beyond use by fire, smoke or water. All paperwork has been treated as confidential in accordance with UH policy governing the proper processing, securing and destruction of confidential or personal information, whether it contained such data or not.
UH personnel collected and recovered from the building and debris, by hand, all identifiable damaged papers under the constant supervision of UH campus security staff. The damaged building and debris have been guarded in an unbroken chain of custody 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, since the fire was extinguished. Papers were sorted and transferred to containers under constant UH control and security. Arrangements are being made with a licensed and certified document disposal company to dispose of all papers and documents appropriately and securely.
“The proper security of all paper and electronic records was the primary concern the moment the fire was extinguished. We are confident that, in the event that any of these papers might have contained confidential information, we’ve protected them appropriately and will dispose of them in a secure manner that should not cause concern as to the security of personal or confidential information,” said UH System Associate Vice President for External Affairs and University Relations Lynne Waters.
Fiscal Staff and Operations
A total of 57 employees were displaced from the burned portable building and neighboring offices damaged by smoke and water. They have all been temporarily relocated among a total of 14 sites throughout the UH System offices, UH Mānoa campus and nearby areas. Payroll for the next pay date of March 5, 2012, has been processed and will be distributed to UH employees as scheduled. A detailed memo has gone out to UH System students, faculty and staff outlining where key offices are temporarily located with instructions on how to access them with questions or needs.
Vendor Information
The Office of Procurement and Real Property Management is in the process of relocating to the Letterwinner’s Building at UH Mānoa located on Lower Campus Road next to Klum Gym. The office currently has one operational phone number – (808) 956-8687.
As announced previously, all competitive solicitations that are due for goods, services, and construction have been suspended. The office will work with university programs to establish new dates for projects and to notify all vendors of the changes. Vendors submitting competitive bids, contract modifications, completed purchase orders and other correspondence should hold these documents until they can be received and properly processed.
Surrounding areas
UH continues to provide a telephone number, web page and email address to assist people in the surrounding areas who might wish to file a claim or get more information about damage to material possessions or health-related concerns as a result of the fire and smoke. Please see www.hawaii.edu/fire-info or call (808) 956-7243 for more information or assistance with filing a claim.