Letters for Tuesday – December 06, 2005

• Former Waimea fan


Former Waimea fan

I have always been a huge fan of the Waimea football team and I hold a high level of respect for them and their coaching staff. However, what I witnessed at the Nov. 18th quarter final game has left me questioning myself.

I was shocked to see the Waimea Athletic Director Jon Kobayashi give the Kamehameha-Maui team a list of ways to stop the Kauai High Red Raiders at half time and even ventured himself into their locker room to explained his detailed list in person. I backed up this finding after the game with a Kamehameha-Maui player.

What message are we teaching our students? Just because Kaua’i stripped us of our KIF title, do we help the outer island team with valuable information to make us feel better about our loss? I believe that what goes around comes around. Maybe this action is bad karma and it’s no wonder that Waimea has lost the KIF for three straight years. I have found a new team to follow. GO RED RAIDERS!!

  • Wally Silva
    Kekaha

County Circuit Breaker tax credit

The county has a ‘Circuit Breaker’ tax credit. In theory, if the 2005 tax bill exceeded 3 percent of the owner’s gross income, the owner qualifies for the credit and the tax bill for 2006 will be the greater of 3 percent of income or the 2001 tax bill. In other words, for low-income taxpayers, property taxes are supposed to be capped at the amount paid in 2001. This tax credit must be applied for each year.

I applied for and received this credit last year, and my tax bill for 2005 was exactly equal to my 2001 tax bill — as was promised. Since my income is still well below the 3 percent threshold, I would expect to get the same credit this year — and pay the same tax amount. On the form, the instructions say to enter the 2001 tax amount on line (H) and then subtract this from the 2005 tax bill (which is, of course the same) and put the result on line (I). Since next year’s tax should be the same as this year’s tax, the result is zero.

The form then says that if line (I) is zero or negative “you are not eligible for a credit.” I assumed this was some sort of error and called the tax department. I was informed by one Howard Uohara that the form was designed by the county council, that the tax department simply checked the arithmetic, and if the form said I was ineligible, then that is how they would rule. I asked if the result was logical and he said that if I had any questions I had to go before the county council. The tax department merely follows orders — without thinking, apparently.

Thus I am faced with a tax bill several thousand dollars higher for 2006. If the circuit breaker credit remains in effect next year, then my taxes in 2007 will go back to the same amount I paid in 2001. I am wondering if this was the intent of the county council — that the circuit breaker tax be only applied every other year when the prior tax bill exceeds the base year. If so, they should have stated this clearly when announcing the credit in the first place.

I am still hoping that this is merely an error in the way the form was drawn up but obviously the tax department has no intention of discussing the matter. By copy of this letter I am asking the county council and mayor for comment. I am also wondering if there is an attorney out there willing to take on a class action lawsuit against the county on behalf of all who received the Circuit Breaker Tax Credit for their 2005 taxes and are thus ineligible for the same credit for 2006.

  • Stan Godes
    Hanalei

‘Malama Moloa’a’

A Special Management Area Use Permit (SMA(U)-2006-2) is currently being deliberated by the Kauai County Planning Commission.

A “Moloa’a Bay Timeline” documenting years of illegal activity at Moloa’a Bay ranch is posted at http://moloaabay.tripod.com.

McCloskey and company project manager Greg Kingsley described a relationship with his boss going back many years. Mr. Kingsley told Planning Commissioners he was a “nanny” for McCloskey’s children. TGI published a “Guest Viewpoint by Mr. Kingsley Oct. 27,2005, supporting Tom McCloskey and the Moloaa Bay Ranch (MBR) SMA application.

While Mr. Kingsley’s loyalty to Tom McCloskey is admirable it is a relief that TGI presented his contentions as “viewpoint” and not necessarily as fact.

  • A detailed letter addressing Mr. Kingsley’s points is posted at the Web site listed.
  • MBR was fined August 1999 for removing trees in the SMA. See the “Timeline” for this DLNR fine (citation 11).
  • MBR kept clearing trees in the SMA and the hillside gave way (citation 26).
  • Mud flowed under MBR’s gate and inundated a residence on Hui Road A. Mud flow breached a MBR silt fence and flowed onto Moloa’a Beach. “Timeline” August 2002 and April 2003 photos show the mud flows unabated (citations 30, 32 & 33).
  • The “Timeline” documents years of unheeded notifications including burning, grubbing, grading and tree cutting.

The Malama Moloa’a Watershed Council feels the CDUA/SMA process must stop the illegal activity.

  • Greg Osborn
    Kilauea

‘Chicken’ letter made his day

Just returned from a vacation on the “Garden Isle,” and as always, hated to leave. While on Kaua’i, I always enjoy reading The Garden Island because the editors try to emphasize positive and heartwarming news over negative and/or voyeuristic tragedies.

The Garden Island is a prototype for other newspapers to emulate. Kaua’i folks can get all the hatred and bad news they want off national TV. Thank you guys — you’re truly a breath of fresh air.

And I usually get a chuckle or two from my fellow haoles’ attempt to point out what’s wrong with Hawai’i. Their letters to the editor are, for the most part, very eloquent and with honest sincerity.

But on Nov. 28, I read one that made me laugh out loud. It was written in all seriousness (I think) and proclaimed that you folks must do something about those CHICKENS! He even supported his claim with a reference to tourists complaining about the chicken noise!! Oh, give me a break!

I don’t know your circulation, but I guess that’s how many folks can say he really made their day. Then a couple days later, another letter from a fellow haole, named Mike I think, that supported Ted, saying he actually saw a tourist FEEDING a chicken! Oh, horrors — tell me it isn’t so …

Actually, I’m grateful to Ted. I will have a good laugh every time I think about his letter. And one last thought — I know how haoles come to Hawai’i and try to change it. I’m thankful this is one haole who came to Hawai’i and instead was changed by the attitude of “Aloha.” I feel I’m a better man because of you. Thank you. May I say “Mahalo”?

  • Don Costar
    Reno, Nev
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