LIHU’E – The mood was somber at the Hawaii Government Employees Association hall, where County Councilmember Randal Valenciano was, after just the absentee votes had been counted last night.
While he wasn’t about to concede the mayor’s race to fellow Councilmembers Bryan Baptiste and Ron Kouchi that early in the evening, he waxed nostalgic about his 12 years on the council.
“It used to be fun,” especially for the decision-maker in him, said Valenciano.
But because of the video cameras and the airing of the council sessions on Ho’ike Kaua’i Community Television’s governmental access channel, council meetings have become public forums first, and decision-making sessions second.
As recently as four years ago, council meetings were productive, didn’t last eight hours like some of them do now, and hence the council accomplished much good for the people of Kaua’i, he commented.
About his plans for the immediate future, he said they were decided much earlier, regardless of yesterday’s election results.
“Monday morning I know where I’m going to be, win or lose,” he said. He’ll be doing legal work in his law office on ‘Umi Street.
“It’s not my only gig,” he said of his council work.
Staff Writer Paul C. Curtis can be reached at mailto:email@example.com or 245-3681 (ext. 224).