Candidate Spence says speculation, enforcement are key county issues

When Deborah “Jo B” Spence first started attending and participating in Kaua’i County Council meetings 20 years ago, the issues of the day were land speculation and enforcement of land-development rules, regulations and laws.

Twenty years later, as she has found out through her recent return to monitoring the lawmaking branch of county government, the issues are the same.

Spence, an independent candidate for County Council, said she wants to “share my insights and thoughts” as a member of the council, and thinks that if people vote for individuals who are actively participating in council business and county government, she should have no problem surviving the primary election on Saturday, Sept. 21.

On that day, the number of council candidates will be pared from 29 to 14. On Tuesday, Nov. 5, the top seven will be the new County Council.

Spence said she likes the fact that there are so many candidates for council, because that gets their friends and families interested and participating in politics.

And for the $25 filing fee and required 15 signatures on paperwork that make a person a candidate, “you get a terrific forum,” she said.

Spence, a 53-year-old grandmother who lives in Keapana Valley and has been a Kaua’i resident for 20 years, is running for council for the third time.

Her recent return to attending council meetings and studying the issues facing the council and county have compelled her to testify before that body.

“I am part of the council now. I am one of the impacters now,” she said.

She makes no attempt to hide the fact that she suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome Disorder (ASD), something akin to what Spence calls “high-functioning autism” that Albert Einstein suffered from during his life.

There are several problems on Kaua’i she would like to help address if elected to the council, including the lag time of airing on government access television captioned tapes of council proceedings.

“That’s criminal what she’s doing,” Spence said of her view that Mayor Maryanne Kusaka is acting to deliberately delay airing of captioned council proceedings, especially where issues like the Pila’a pollution and council discussions of the sale of Kauai Electric to Kaua’i Island Utility Co-op are concerned.

There are other issues that concern Spence as well, she continued.

“The island’s most egregious impact is going to be the pre-emptive technology,” she said of the high-technology industry on the island that is developing, among other initiatives, a first-strike military warfare capability.

Solipsys, which is renovating the former C.S. Wo building at the corner of Kaumuali’i Highway and Kalepa Street at Kukui Grove Center, is seeking computer programmers to forward its Exercise Scenario Planning and Real-time Integrated Test (ESPRIT) program.

The high-tech segment is “imbedding itself into the economy of the island,” and the involvement of Solipsys and other companies on the island “continues Kaua’i’s military base,” she said.

Spence favors a reinstated Hawaiian government, the use of cannabis (marijuana, or pakalolo) as a crop for food, fuel, spiritual needs and other purposes, and full disclosure of the “hidden government” the real U.S. government has kept from the people.

The existence of unidentified flying objects (UFOs), and the corporate power-brokers who effectively squashed free-energy initiatives several decades ago in favor of what is now the world’s dependence on fossil-fuel oil, must be acknowledged by the government, she said.

Her son lives in Northern California with his family, and her daughter is working and going to school in Colorado. Both are Kapa’a High School graduates.

Staff Writer Paul C. Curtis can be reached at or 245-3681 (ext. 224).


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