The new Kauai County Council was sworn in yesterday, with Mel Rapozo and Ross Kagawa again tapped to serve as Council chair and vice chair, respectively.
Councilwoman JoAnn Yukimura voted against the Council rules, on the grounds that they prevented members from thoroughly questioning those who offered public testimony. But even Councilman Mason Chock refrained from joining her, though he earlier gave up his place on the Housing Committee to accommodate her.
JoAnn was unhappy that she not only lost the leadership of that committee to newly elected Councilman Arthur Brun, but any place on the panel at all. Brun had said he did not want JoAnn on his committee, but Mason gave her his place.
Hmm. It may be an interesting Council after all.
Kipu Kai Kualii, who narrowly lost his place on the Council, attended the inauguration and festivities. He's already stated he plans to run again in 2018. But Gary Hooser, who came in ninth, didn't show — even though he's also entertaining a return to politics.
In a Nov. 29 email to his mailing list, Hooser wrote:
Whether or not my recent loss is the last and final election campaign of my life is a question that I ask myself daily. Serving in elective office, though challenging and somewhat stressful at times, has been incredibly fulfilling.
Future political options primarily revolve around the 2018 election cycle however sometimes “things happen” in mid cycle that create opportunities for appointments and/or special elections.
A potentially YUGE wrinkle in Hawaii’s political landscape is the rumor of U.S. Representative Tulsi Gabbard leaving her CD2 seat early for a job in the Trump administration. The CD2 is composed of the neighbor-islands (2/3) and rural Oahu (1/3).
Should this happen, a “winner take all” special election will occur giving candidates possibly only 4 months to organize and run a campaign on all islands. Candidates with existing name recognition and established statewide networks would have a clear off the blocks advantage.
Lot’s [sic] of choices.
Frankly I want to do it all.
Oh, do you now? Exactly what about losing big, despite spending way more than any other candidate on the race, don't you understand, Gary?
This guy's ego is ginormous. He simply can't face the fact that the voters don't want him.
He's also looking at ways to get back in to politics through the back door. He wrote:
H.A.P.A. is a 501c3 nonprofit whose tax exempt status does not allow it to become involved in the full-throated political and policy actions that I strongly believe are needed now.
Like it hasn't already? Come on! Its supposedly non-partisan Kuleana Academy has trained only candidates who follow the anti-GMO/anti-ag party line.
If we are to achieve the bold change required to push back against the growing institutional and corporate powers now in place, we need to step up our game with regards to both policy advocacy and political action.
So while H.A.P.A. can educate, inform and organize which are critical components in the foundation needed for change to happen, other organizations must step up to carry the ball further and more aggressively down the field.
One option is to create and lead such an entity. This could be a 501c4 or otherwise legally structured entity that could engage aggressively in both political and policy advocacy. This would allow me to utilize and leverage the experience and networks I have gained over the years to advocate for progressive public policy while supporting symbiotic community based political action springing up now on all islands.
Hmmm. One way or the other, Hooser's trying to avoid getting a real job, and instead wants to keep lapping at the public trough or living off the largess of others.
Meanwhile, Civil Beat has latched on to the activist cause du jour, sending a reporter and photographer to cover the Standing Rock pipeline issue in North Dakota. What, like you're all out of Hawaii news already?
Civil Beat's lopsided TMT coverage was bad enough, and it looks like they're aiming to replicate it in ND, focusing on Andre Perez, one of the TMT protestors who is now at Standing Rock.
I like Andre, and know he's committed, but if you're going to the expense of sending two staff people all the way to ND — not to mention the irony of burning all that fossil fuel to cover an oil issue — at least try to provide a balanced, in-depth look at a complex issue. But then, as I noted yesterday, CB has already acknowledged that it's being funded as an activist group, not a news site.
Not to be outdone, Hawaii Center for Food Safety Director Ashley Lukens is now indoctrinating Texas middle school students with her propaganda:
Guess too many people in Hawaii are wise to her bullshit, so now she's got to start spreading it out of state. But though the educational standards in Texas are low, it's sad to think they've dropped this far.
And of course nothing can be done without a selfie to promote oneself. Because the cause is not nearly so important as how one looks while carrying it out.
Sounds like Joann will now be lone wolf in her sore Looser (Hooser) shenanigans. 30 plus years of elected service and you are that ineffective. Pretty hilarious Yoko Ono. Mount Yukimura (Kekaha Landfill) and the empty Kauai Bus's is your legacy. Thank you for nothing and all the fake smiles.
That post by Ashley Lukens SCREAMS, "I'm phony."
And she and everything she stands for, is.
Her family and friends got the treasures that she gift wrapped to them through legislative acts so don't think she hasn't done anything on Kauai. She just didn't do anything good for the people of Kauai in her 30+ years as a politician and as mayor.
Yukimura is a carbon copy of Hilary. Bernard the fat mayor is a flip flopping thief like Trump and Melvin and Kawakami will be the same.
Traditionally, the highest votegetter is supposed to be the council chair, or at least offered it, and use it as a negotiation item. Give the new guy a smaller committee so he can gain some experience, poor JoAnn has only crumbs to deal with. They continue to censor her nit picking, micro managing tactics, that she comes with. It's not a bad thing, but she dives into the deep end of all items ad infinitum. Cut it back. and use your last lame duck two years to guide a springboard to a different office or a different career. Lawyer perhaps? Mel still getting the glory for the next two years, Derek will bide his time. Mel still getting the Kauai Blue book report on Craigslist, courtesy of probably Andy Parx, who has nothing else to do since Gary is on hiatus. Gary is still envious of Senator Brian Shatz, who got the nod from the Democrats since he was a good boy who stood in line and followed the party line. Gary wants to be a US Senator, as does most politicians, including Mel. Nothing wrong with trying and trying. If you don't try, you won't make it. Give him some credit Joan.
Didn't see too many antis there at the inauguration. Fern posting pics of her up in Kokee, maybe she can pull some weeds while she's there. The antis need to strategize to work with the seed companies to get some sort of compromise, which is better than what they've got now, which is nothing.
Disagree Mel would be a huge improvement over the Mayor. Derek will be better too, he will hire better department heads especially for HR and Public Works
When will we get a council that cares about getting a handle on deferred maintenance? Instead of expanding the parks empire or creating new agencies of ever-increasing welfare services, can't we get the local government to fix our roads, parks, water lines, neighborhood centers, and county buildings first? Why the heck are we building a new teen drug center when that's another massive loss to county operations? Why is Mel so hellbent on building a new Kawaihau station for Police? When you're in a hole it's time to drop the shovel. Fix what we have now before adding new assets that they won't be able to maintain. I know that fixing the roads and parks will cost money, but I for one would agree to paying more taxes if these things became the mayor's and council's top priority. I would not agree to GET or more car taxes to continue growing government unsustainably. The council and the mayor need to set priorities and develop a commensurate financing plan by working together. Until this happens, council will continue rejecting tax increases and nothing will get done. It's time to play nice in the sandbox. Now that Hooser is out, maybe there can be some reconciliation. Mel and Bernard need to mend fences too. And, JoAnn's socialist agenda of expanding subsidized transportation (aka The Bus) and providing low-income housing on the backs of the taxpayers has to take a backseat to crumbling infrastructure.
I find funny that none of the DAPL protesters attended the many open public meetings about the pipeline. An other interesting fact, only 7 % of the protesters are native Americans. Finally, the last leg of the project completely avoids any historical ancestral Indian burial ground and that portion of the project planing was completed 3 years ago. This protest is about stopping oil (guised under the pretense of protecting water) and has nothing to do with sacred Indian ground. I find it ironic that all these hippies are protesting oil, all the while they're living in RVs/tents powered by gasoline/propane (nearly 7,000 of them).
December 2, 2016 at 2:00 PM
What? Agree to paying higher taxes? You are more than welcome to donate some money to the County. There is no rule against it. So give a little.
But to expect anyone else to pay more when what we do pay gets squandered on salaries and benefits to a bunch of County clowns is a joke. The County already gets 200 million a year which is 85% a free salary ride to workers who don't produce jackshit.
If the County used basic management techniques it could reduce 20 percent of the payroll.
Since Mayor Carvalho has been elected, our County work force has doubled, our taxes have almost doubled and not one thing has improved for the taxpayer.
Roads are pukas. Traffic is a nightmare. No oversight on Planning to have them streamline local housing. The jail is overcrowded. Meth is a common neighborhood problem.
The only thing the county has done is add some simple little bus stop shelters.. So JoAnn gets dinky little shelters for her 50 million dollar buses. That's it.
JoAnn is the winner. Her and Mason's dream of a Kauai with bike lanes, buses and apartments that can create a population center in Lihue so she can have cute little Coffee shops and boutique shoppes is our future.
Mel and Council pass every budget with no oversight. Big talk, little do....No roads, no housing, big Meth and big Traffic....
Look at the new future General Plan............no housing in Kapaa, no housing in Kilauea or Waimea...Great Gawd Almighty where is the leadership? Where are the ideas?
No-to higher taxes until they spend their existing treasure trove wisely.
And Da Hoos will be back in 2 years. He can twiddle his little Fistee and wait until then. Then the NS whackjobs will rally back. JoAnn and Mason will be silent on GMOs until that flaccid Fistee re-engorges. The fight goes on.
Have you ever heard of global warming Mr smarty pants?
I suggest you educate yourself, Bradley. Who cares whether the DAPL protesters attended public meetings? As with ANY protest, most of the white folk have myriad issues they're motivated by. Address the impact on the native population. Take their concerns into account. What is the relevance of the fact that 7% of the protesters are native? That actually is a significant number, relative to their population. For a white man to state so boldly, "This protest . . . has nothing to do with sacred Indian ground." STFU.
FYI, I am with Joan on 99.99% of the issues she raises.
6:40. I agree with your sentiment but your facts are not correct. The personnel count has grown proportionately with population growth. What hasn't grown proportionately is county employee wages and benefits. Police and Fire have seen recent raises between 4% and 6% annually, and compounded. Just think about the growth 50% increase over 10 years. Collective bargaining has been far too successful, so much so that Hawaii could become the next Wisconsin in terms of having to end the union death grip. That's where all your tax money is going and frankly why none of the important initiatives (roads, housing, drug treatment, etc.) have been passed over. In the past 10 years, employee counts have only gone from about 1,100 to 1,300. That's less than 2% per year growth rate. Again, it's the amount of compensation the employees get that's bleeding the county dry. Standard of conduct bonuses, huge overtime pay, pay differentials for various activities, and lawsuits involving discrimination have bloated the Police budgets. Fire countered with rank-for-rank excessive pay. Under the guise of public safety, these two agencies have put our local government on the road to bankruptcy. The mayor takes the fall for the lack of real progress and bloated budgets, but nobody at council wants to stand up to the unions.
You forgot his campaign manager bloated salary for his professional experience. Parks and recs have fallen to despicable levels of ineptitude and yet they can collect their checks proudly and spend it in their local neighborhood bar where everyone's knows their names on rice st.
The council wants to put a bar kn Wailua golf course that already costs the tax payers millions to fund a recreational play pen for the Kauai wealthy and degenerate gamblers. Blood alley has claimed more lives on this stretch of highway on Kauai then any where else. I guess the 40 MPH saved lives so they want a bar back in business to jeopardize the safety and lives of children and adults driving and riding by Wailua golf course and the rape video playing warden at KCCC.
This is straight up bullshit. Rank and file County employees I know have to work 2 and 3 jobs just to make ends meet here on Kauai and health care premiums are no longer better than private sector benefits. It's damn hard to get qualified folks to fill these jobs and the ones that do take them work hard. Of course there are some who abuse any system but it is absolutely insulting to blame this County's problems on the working class staff who do their jobs every day.
@11:26 AM -- When you get a job from which no matter how slow and inefficient you are (probably because your related to others in the office) and from which you can never be fired….one in which the bosses are taking naps because they are clueless as to leadership and what the workers are actually doing (Internet shopping, online farming games, porn, napping, etc.) and are scared to reprimand them, then the pay & benefits should be equally minimal. Only productivity should increase wages. But unions want wages increased based on how long a person has been on their job and not how good a job they’re doing. We don’t need government just to provide jobs for low-achievers. We have government to do for us what we need done. The problem is government unions and ridiculously incompetent supervisors.
Again, straight up bs. You getting your talking points from Hawaii Free Press and Drudge Report. Ask anyone who's applied for a county job in the last 8 years and they'all tell you it's by the book. Janine Rapozo does her job and she does it well.
11:26 There are low level employees that struggle to make ends meet. These are mostly UPW and HGEA employees. But when you have entry level Police officers starting at nearly $60K and then add overtime, standard of conduct bonuses, a host of pay differentials, excellerared retirement set asides, defined benefits, and asking 6% per year increases every time collective bargaining opens, there's got to be a limit the the taxpayers can afford. When an entry level officer with a GED can make more than a licensed engineer, something is wrong. The annual reports show the largest increases in the last 10 years was for public safety (Police and Fire), more than doubling within adding much staff. Actually, the departments that increased the most were Prosecuting Attorneys and Council. Funny how Council talks tough about the budget but reaches further into the cookie jar than the mayor.
I call your BS and raise you: the county opened a position up for a person not qualified for the position and that person is still not qualified. The county is full of shit. 150K for 3 months of the princeville shuttle at the end of the peak of the tourist season. This was after the county council rejected the funding of the scheme/scam but the mayor and his admin crooks stole money from the visitor bureau to fund the theft. It's just like the Gas theft ring and also the missing 1 million dollars that the admin just siphoned from other accounts. These county crooks are the biggest clowns/donkeys/jokers on island.
Over $30 HR for KpD is good for good cops but the dirty pigs are a disgrace.
All the stuff on County workers is BS.
Sure the folks may work hard. And sure they may work 2 or 3 jobs, but so what. The County system is a feather-bed of inefficiency and gold brick jobs.
We are at the mercy of the Public Unions and especially the Retirement System. Just think, we the citizens, work hard and try to make a living whilst the County Workers have as their job...either giving you tickets, hassling you over some baloney paperwork on your building permit, f*cking with your mind as you try to get a driver's license or registration....in other words they work for 20 years hassling you and then they get paid by you a yuge retirement.......and then when you do get a couple of bucks to go to the store-- you have to stand in line behind 4 to 6 guys from the Fire Department as they get their dinner at Costco. Sheesh, they might as well turn Costco into a Fire sub-station.
But then again, since the most important part of the Fire Department's job schedule is figuring out what to cook for dinner and make the schedule for their real job as full-time Contractors ...and when 1 out of 8 Fire and Police make well in excess of 110,000........we are doomed. Doomed.
For Buddha's sake, even Jay Furfaro makes well over 110K as the Board/Commission Dep't head. Featherbed? Pump up the pension. And look at our commissions............a group of citizens who follow the directives of the County Dep't heads. Cancel the Commissions. Real citizens putting many hours into myriads of paperwork Horseshot.and at the turn of a pen, the Council can over ride them.
Turn all County jobs over to the private sector. Cops and all. It will be fairer and more efficient.
As far as our good Mayor goes...under his watch (according to real statistics) the County budget has pertnner doubled and the workforce as well.But the real dilemma is that we are paying more in taxes and not one gol durn thing is better.
I challenge anyone to show one part of the County that has gotten better over the past 8 years? Nada. Zilch. Nyet. Nein. Nicht.
But the private sector is thriving in spite of the government intrusion. God bless America and the good people who toil for their families.
3:34 PM = Total Denial
It's true that police budget is out of control, and even with the pay they still can't keep the new cops from quitting. OPA and Council increased a lot under Iseri and Furfaro but Kollar and Rapozo stopped the increases there a while ago.
6:35 wtf, you just making stuff up, the county did not steal the money for the shuttle, it was given it by the tourist bureau grant. We can agree some of the money was wasted, and it still remains unclear how a shuttle can work, but stop makin shit up, No one stole nothin
What one needs to know about police pay is that mainland cop salaries are higher than here and the cost of living is lower.
Dairy stopped by Federal Court.
It's still tax payers money that funded that shuttle scheme. The council reject to fund that scam spoke loud and clear that it was an inefficient fraudulent waste. so basically the admin had to find a way to steal the money to fund the mayor's get rich quick friends and family.
Was there a county of Kauai GAS theft ring? You betcha
Was there 1 million dollars missing from a admin account? 100% fraudulently siphoned from other accounts.
Is the Keahua stream (loop road) necessary? Heck No and it's not a transportation route or frequently used area. Only crack heads (meth addicts) go there and there's been some high profiled murders in that area. The most recent was a well known New York Mafia (real mafia and not that faux wanna be's on Kauai).
Making stuff up? Check the facts before you bump your keyboards.
"Turn all County jobs over to the private sector. Cops and all. It will be fairer and more efficient."
Yeah, worked really well in Iraq. Who needs government, eh?
What the people need to know is that the council gave raises to the top county earners 70K-114K while the lower end workers received nothing. The county gifted them with over 10-15% raises. This is total madness even after two audits that showed the county has practiced fraud, waste and abuse for many years. Both audits showed that employees and dept heads steal money. When you go on leave those days should be charged and taken off of your leave days. The audits showed that HR doesn't know what they are doing, lazy or just plain stupid to do anything about it. The dept heads aren't being elf accountable by no one. Not even the council that approves raises and the board of ethics is the biggest jokers around and that's why they got rid of Rolf Bieber as soon as your mayor (not mines) got his buffet table ready for all his family and friends to eat. Historically your Mayor (not mines) will be known as the Bernie Madoff of Kauai. This is the reason Kawakami or Rapozo cannot be Mayor in two years. Vote for Sparks! She has the resume for the job. The only person more qualified than her is a female general (retired) so how can we have females with more qualifications than these boys with big belts and little shoes that only toot their horns and beat their drums to the same sound as the last failures and not have these qualified females on council or in admin positions? Yes we I am tired of Yukimura and her 30+ years of BS. If a known meth addict/dealer wife beater can become a council member than anyone can. Only on Kauai so keep it Kauai it.
8:03 you must be a cop they are highly overpaid and the danger or risk factor compared to large cities like NY or LA is like comparing apples and oranges. Same goes for Kauai Fire Fighters
@9:46. No, it wasn't
8:03 It's exactly that high pay has caused many police departments to shut down or merge with sheriff's departments across the country. Cops here are not dealing with Crips, Bloods, and MS13. Kauai has its methheads and disorganized syndicate no doubt, but nor urban warfare. Many fire stations have been replaced by volunteer firefighters to save money.
There's a lot of mention of a syndicate and mafia on kauai. Is this true or just exaggerated stories?
That's BS vato locos on island running the heroin and meth game hard with the protection of kpd dirty vice pigs and they use drug dealers as faux informants to protect them from arrests while they terrorize the island of Kauai.
The Company (Hawaiian organized crime) - Wikipedia
Wikipedia › wiki › The_Company_(Haw...
The Company, also called the Hawaiian Syndicate, is the name given ... The syndicate made connections with figures in the American mafia, but in some other cases also had a rivalry with some of them.
Years active: 1970s-Present
Ethnicity: Primarily Native Hawaiian, Japanese, Chinese, Podagee
Looks like Lukens affected a Morticia Addams look to deliver her anti GMO rant. Hope the middleschoolers appreciated the Halloween effort from this preening propagandist.
10:07AM You say females will do better than the males on the Council? Joanne is on it, for 30 fricken years, she is the worst ever, sooo irritating. Lani Kawahara was a complete joke. Embarrissing that she even was on the Council. So I agree that there are some more than capable females out there in the public, but all of them don't run! Sparks and Apalla? I'm sorry, one is too smart and arrogant and the other should stick to her music, she's clue-less. You sound like you think you can do the job, Norma's friend? State your name, run for Council or Mayor, stop blaming, do something?
I'm not Norma's friend and I don't need to run for council. I've accomplished more than any council member has accomplished in the history of Kauai. You people would be licking my boots to show you all how great I am.
What's your name so we can agree on whether we need to lick your boots out of respect? What you can critcize Arthur but you chicken to say your name ?
SpEciAL for You : toss my salad!!!
I didn't write this comment. It I stand by my word of the councilmans character flaws.
If you think this person and I are the only people on Kauai that knows what he has done then you really don't know or are a family and friend that is loyal to the end with your hand out for a county job.
How cute! Can't get a job on your own so why not defend a drug dealer/addict girlfriend/wife beater so he can create you a county welfare check.
As how on Kauai das why.
DevelopmentisDigression posted at 10:11 am on Fri, Dec 2, 2016.
We have a known and admitted meth dealer and wife beater on the council.
What's amazing is that he did the hard work to pull his life together and now offers positive inspiration to so many through his community service as the chicken shits snipe anonymously from the sidelines while offering nothing positive of their own.
@ 7:25 education As a mid-west farmer, delaying Keystone and DAPL drives up freight rates because that oil is still moving on trains Higher freight rates are passed onto farmers in the form of lower cash bids for commodities. Also, transporting oil by pipeline is 4-10 cheaper than by train. Oil companies pass those higher cost onto farmer in the form of higher energy cost. Therefore, farmers (both liberal and conservative) support pipeline infrastructure.
Now, Warren Buffet owns part of the UP and all of BNSF railroads. He gave millions to Obama. In return the Pres. gave him Medal of Freedom, plus killed DAPL and Keystone. Those decisions helped Warren's Companies make BILLIONS. However, it also pissed off hard working farmers and blue collar workers who showed up in droves to vote Democrats out of office all across the nation...
Add to that, "protestors" are stealing, and eating, rancher's cattle leaves very few mid-westerners that sympathize with their cause. They are also trespassing on Federal land, while vandalizing that property with trash, and raw sewage. Finally, stopping the pipeline hurts the environment more that it helps because the oil is still going to moved by methods that are more dangerous and use more fossil fuel.
Just because you have differing points of views doesn't make me uneducated. Petty name calling is the hallmark of sore losers. Please, bear that in mind.
9:40 wow the elitist attitude of the transplant Haole comes to light. You look down on the locals thinking you're better or wiser. We're all fed up with you clowns, go back to the mainland, we don't want your money or advice. I'll take a shit in your boots.
Get rid of the mayor, Lenny and Janine...problems solve!!
We are proud of Arthur's accomplishments in getting off of drugs and turning his life around. The voters approved too, so why don't you give him a chance and see how he does.
Why don't we showcase Arthur, as a real life example of how someone can change their life? You criticize but what have you done to help the community? Have you put yourself out in the open and run for public office? Easy to talk shit behind an anonymous keyboard. Complain about everything. Try to stop everything. Never do anything positive. Stepping on people to elevate yourselves. You all ain't worth a shit.
Arthur, keep up the good work. You are a role model for many. Don't listen to these assholes. They have shitty and depressed lives so attacking others make them feel better. Forget them.
Fuck every drug dealer on Kauai and the dirty pigs that protect them. President Duterte style!
Pipeline infrastructure is fine, just avoid running it through the land of disadvantaged and disenfranchised people for the benefit of privileged white people.
@ 5:02 the pipeline is North of Indian territory on Army Corp land and the pipeline will go 90 feet below the lake. DAPL tried to have meeting with the tribe SEVEN TIMES prior to deciding the route and they refused to provide their input.... That was in addition to the other 400 public meetings... It's amazing what activist can accomplish when they bitch hard enough... but, why didn't they start bitching before the route was finalized and save DAPL a bunch of money? I think TOMI says it best...
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