Kapalua Airport was built by Hawaiian Airlines and opened on March 1, 1987. The airport designator, JHM, is for the president of Hawaiian Airlines at the time John Henry Magoon. In the 1993, when HAL was having a tough time economically, the State of Hawaii purchased the airport so that West Maui would continue to have air service.
Kapalua Airport is governed by a special agreement made by the state with Maui County. Major changes or improvements to Kapalua Airport cannot be made without the consent of the Maui County Council. The county insists on limiting development to preserve the Kapalua community from commercialization.
Kapalua Airport is restricted to a single runway, terminal facilities and support facilities. There are no air cargo facilities. Operations are restricted to daytime hours only.