Letters for Thursday • May 25, 2006

• Pedestrian bridge musings

• Money the root of all evil

• County should consider Ohana amendment

• Say what?


Pedestrian bridge musings

I have been wondering why all the fuss lately about the bridge between two shopping centers in Kapa‘a. Back when the Safeway center was built, the bridge on Kuhio Highway was narrow and unsafe for pedestrians. Wisely, a covenant was added requiring a footbridge to ensure pedestrian safe access between the two centers. For reasons we are likely never to know, this requirement was never enforced, but the bridge on Kuhio Highway has been widened and now there is a perfectly safe pedestrian sidewalk connecting the centers.

Why now, after all this time, are certain council members forcing the issue on this now superfluous ‘bridge to nowhere’? Perhaps it’s just an election year power trip. One point our councilors forget is that if the shopping center owners are forced to spend big bucks, this will be reflected in the rent tenants pay in the future and thus in the prices we all pay for goods and services. There is no such thing as a free lunch.

Or is this renewed interest designed to cave in to those condominium owners who demand that the public land between them and the ocean be kept clear of hikers and cyclists. I surely hope that nobody is seriously considering that “cockamamie” plan to re-route a coastal bike path at least twice across a busy highway, through a coconut field and at least two busy parking lots.

To the council n if you really feel the need to extort money from the shopping center owners, at least make it something of value to the taxpayers n perhaps putting the money toward building the connector link between the bypass road and the shopping centers to cut down traffic on the highway.

  • Stan Godes
    Hanalei

Money the root of all evil

General MacArthur declared “Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.”

Why?

Because each generation is forgetful of the past; seeing war as the cause of old men with white hair who cry together at funerals and on national holidays, i.e. Memorial Day. Certainly war is something terrible to be avoided. But unfortunately, the more good men avoid war the more chaos that will beset this world. Until we seek God’s glorious qualities in the face of evil and step up, push science, labor, and the pursuit of money aside, evil will continue to triumph.

On 9/11 the World Trade Center was attacked, why?

One reason is that today the world’s pursuit of money, the desire to preserve wealth is ever increasingly challenged. So until we change a national monetary policy that intentionally tries to erase our national debt by inflating the money supply, chaos will reign. Who in such a world stands on the side of righteousness? They who want to dishonestly erase debt or those who want to preserve what little money they have, among these choices I honestly do not know.

What I do know is that fighting for freedom and sacrificing for the humanity of man is glorious; and that terrorists are evil men bent on the destruction of America for both its good, and bad, qualities.

  • Richard “Noah” Hough
    Honolulu

County should consider Ohana amendment

Currently, the County Council is meeting in an attempt to adopt the budget. I fear that a gross oversight exists that can be cured by prompt action.

I sponsored the Ohana Kauai Tax Measure. This measure rolled back the property assessment to that level which existed in 1998. The voters adopted this measure by an almost two-to-one majority. However, on a contrived lawsuit I am now an intervener on behalf of the voters of Kaua‘i challenging the council and the mayor in the Supreme Court of Hawai‘i. The tax measure should be adopted as it was written and passed by the voters. I am here to finish the job.

The mayor and County Council have never been known for their vision. They are now considering the budget and I am here to alert them to the provisions of the Ohana Tax Measure which I am certain will be adopted by the Supreme Court. When I prevail, the county will be faced with a deficit due to the failure to fund for the rebates that will be owing to the taxpayers of Kaua‘i. The court may take up to two years to come to a decision, and when it does, there will be about $15 million owed to the homestead class property owners defined by the Ohana Amendment. As a body, no provisions have been made by the council to establish a reserve to pay this amount. I urge them to do so now.

I have reviewed the filing of the lawsuit by the county attorney. This is the same attorney hired by the mayor. The county attorney is listed as the plaintiff and the mayor as the defendant. What a novelty that the mayor is being sued by the person who gives him advice and whom he hired. It exists as a puzzle for anyone to understand to this day.

What can be done about this lawsuit? The County Council has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to obtain outside legal advice. This funding is only a small part of the outside attorneys the Council has hired to represent them on the increasingly large number of lawsuits that the council has invited. In this case, I urge the council to terminate the Ohana lawsuits that the council has invited. In this case, I urge the council to terminate the Ohana lawsuit at once and adopt the tax rollback provision that I represent. In addition, set aside in your current budget a reserve to pay that class of taxpayers covered by the tax provision. By now, the number of people affected has been lowered as sales have taken place that effectively increase the assessment of any property in question, but there is still a significant amount that will come due when this provision is adopted by the court. By acting now, the council acknowledges to the voters that they are acting prudently; they are acting now and not deferring the action to a future council on which they may not serve. And I must add, the County Council is using the voters’ tax dollars to oppose the measure which you, the voters, adopted.

The County Council is setting the budget. I urge them to do what is right. Fund for the provisions of the Ohana tax amendment and drop the lawsuit.

  • Monroe Richman
    Po‘ipu

Say what?

Byron Say’s trial was scheduled to begin in Judge Watanabe’s court in April, but he got another pass. Somehow, his unready lawyer talked his way out at the last minute. So now Mr. Say can keep on cruising the roads of Kaua‘i for a few more weeks while he looks for a new mouthpiece.

I guess it didn’t matter that he just got busted again recently for driving stoned on drugs and running. Just like when he smashed into Lisa Wilson and left her broken body splattered on the highway. How about a no-bail hold on this loser, judge? He can call his next hair-splitter from jail. It’s a no-brainer.

  • David Tucker
    Albuquerque, N.M.
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