The GPU Discussion Draft projects a population of 65,000 to 74,000 in the year
2020. But the GPU emphasizes job creation, government support of business, and
a strong, growing economy. And economic growth is population growth.
object is jobs for residents. Trying to create opportunity on Kaua’i so our
children won’t need to find work elsewhere.
But will it work?
when the population was less than 30,000, our youth were leaving Kaua’i for
better jobs in Honolulu or the mainland. 30 years of economic growth and job
creation have doubled our population. Yet the youth still leave to find
So what happened?
Well, while our kids were job-seeking
elsewhere, other people’s kids found work here.
So why shouId we now
believe more jobs will keep our young at home? How will the next 20 years be
Since 1980 we have doubled the Average Daily Visitor Census,
yet the complaints go on. How will 8,000 more tourists help? Or 16,000
When I came to Honolulu in 1951, politicians promised growth and job
creation so our youth wouldn’t leave home to seek their fortunes. For almost 50
years we’ve heard that promise and now, as O’ahu’s population approaches a
million, our young are still leaving.
They’re not just going for jobs:
They’re escaping high-cost housing, traffic congestion, low ranking schools,
long commutes, and a cost of living which, for many, means taking on a second
job just to pay rent or put food on the table.
Jobs were created and the
City grew. And it can happen here.