Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022 |
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• Carlyle Group
• Gas prices
Thank you to all those who came to the Public Utilities Commission hearings over the past three weeks to both listen and testify about The Carlyle Group’s acquisition of Verizon Hawaii. The hearings were valuable on two important levels.
First, The Carlyle Group was able to outline its plans for Hawaiian Telcom. If the sale is approved by the PUC, we believe that Hawaii will benefit from the vast depth and breadth of Carlyle’s telecommunications industry experience including board members who have lead major telecommunications companies. In addition, Hawaiian Telcom plans to offer innovative, state-of-the-art products and quality service, another benefit to Hawaii’s residents and businesses.
At the hearings, we also explained that major functions such as accounting, human resources, legal, information technology and other key areas, which are now operated out of Verizon on the Mainland, will return to Hawaii to create a stand-alone operation. This means more jobs with good wages in Hawaii. We will continue to work constructively with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), which represents Verizon’s collective bargaining unit employees, as we have with the unions representing employees at other companies in which we have invested.
Second, the hearings allowed us to listen to the comments of those from Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Molokai, Lanai, Kona and Hilo. Through all of the hearings, one thing was abundantly clear: the people of Hawaii care passionately about their phone company. We applaud that strong sense of ownership and appreciate the vote of confidence in The Carlyle Group from those who came to testify in support of the transaction at the public hearings.
William E. Kennard
The Carlyle Group
The recent Garden Island article on fuel prices reflected the same old smoke and mirrors spin put out by the refiners and the gas stations. Evidently they are warming us up for another dollar increase over the current prices. I would expect to see gas at about $3.80 or more a gallon within six months. (Do the math)! It seems remarkable that, as they state, they are still processing the “old $40 a barrel” oil!
These people put out this same old pap every time they are interviewed by the media or politicians. They never answer the following critical and pertinent questions.
Why do gas prices on Kauai only go up? In other markets they fluctuate but not here. Why is this? We know the wholesale price of crude fluctuates but here gas prices only fluctuate “upward”.
How are neighbor island fuel prices established? The difference between Honolulu and the neighbor islands is clearly in excess of the actual cost of shipping the fuel. Why is fuel more expensive on Maui than Kauai and why are we more expensive than the island of Hawaii? We are further from the refinery than Maui and why should the price be different? The answer is of course when the refiners and stations have a monopoly and completely control a market with no competition they can charge whatever they want. In this case it is whatever they think the market will bear-in this case more on Maui than elsewhere.
How much actual profit are the refiners and gas stations making? I hear lots of stories but I don’t believe they are hurting. A related issue is the amount of gas that each station pumps-this affects the amount of each station’s markup on each gallon.
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