Letters for Friday, May 16, 2008

• Know the comings and goings

• Shaylene not a ‘pet prosecutor’


Know the comings and goings

As a lifelong resident of nearly 72 years in the same dwelling in Kekaha, Kaua‘i, I have had the opportunity to see the “comings and goings” of people going to Koke‘e from my front porch, so to speak. Likewise, I have seen our public officials come and go as well, to deal with the affairs of our local government.

Some issues have remained problematic for decades. Opinions have been expressed. Frustrations have been voiced. With meetings now publicized on Ho‘ike’s Channel 53, those of us who tune in have become more aware and highly sensitized to “what’s going on” at those darn-long meetings.

As such, I have much praise and admiration for County Council members Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho and Mel Rapozo, both of whom were singled out as being “nit-pickers” (“Pet prosecutor,” Letters, May 15). Shaylene and Mel (as well as all of the other council members) are calling the shots (as each sees fit) on issues that are brought to the table. They may disagree with one another. We may disagree with them. All that is par for the course in the realm of public domain.

What is distasteful to me is to have people sound-off in a manner and style that is offensive. I would humbly suggest that those people consider the possibility of running for office. If they can get elected, they should do better than those currently in office. Otherwise, find ways to become pro-actively involved in community concerns and use your time and energy to do something beneficial.

Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be?

Jose Bulatao Jr.

Kekaha


Shaylene not a ‘pet prosecutor’

It appears that this “dogs on the bike path” issue is being blown way out of proportion.

A few vocal dog owners on the Eastside — few if one believes the total 20,000-dog figure on Kaua‘i given by the Kauai Humane Society is correct — are complaining about their dogs not being allowed on this bike/pedestrian path.

Dogs on a 10-foot-wide cement path whether on a 8-foot or 6-foot leash just do not mix with bikes, the elderly, young children whether walking or in a buggy, ADA people or anyone else. Accidents will be waiting to happen.

With all due respect to Becky Rhoades, who does an outstanding job with the humane society, I do not believe that her April Kauai Humane Society News pamphlet criticizing some members of our council and the administration “Kauai County Kicks Dogs Off Path” was either constructive or appropriate.

I love dogs — had one for 22 years, six of those on Kaua‘i. She went walking with me every day in the Homesteads and neither cars, people, nor any other animals ever bothered us. We certainly didn’t need to travel 3 miles to a walking path for our exercise when we could walk anywhere in our neighborhood. And remember that the cane haul road that was there before the cement slab was poured could be used by dogs, horses, motorcycles and everyone else; so if these dog complainers want to go after someone, then go after those who pushed for this path.

Councilman Rapozo testified that he too has a dog and walks him in his neighborhood all the time. He loves his dog as much as those who accuse him of violating their right to use the path to walk their dogs. But he, as well as three other members of the council simply want to prohibit a potential accident from happening and costing taxpayers a lot of money in lawsuits. In fact, if people like Jon Evans (“Pet prosecutor,” Letters, May 15) would come to council meetings and watch Councilwoman Carvalho fight for the people (her work on the Safeway bridge was outstanding and got results), maybe he would not be so ready to criticize her.

Council chair Kaipo Asing has wisely introduced draft Bill 2267 that would “establish provisions and to provide an area for dog owners to bring their dogs to enjoy being off leash.” Even the humane society has an area for dogs to co-mingle with other dogs. For me, these are outstanding ideas and should more than satisfy any person who doesn’t want to walk their dogs in their own neighborhoods.

Let’s not ask for problems we don’t need. We will never have enough police to patrol this path and enforce the laws that are broken on it. KPD has 23 unfilled positions and their members are struggling just to stay on top of our serious crimes alone, without trying to enforce dog infractions.

Our park caretakers are struggling to properly maintain our parks now without being tasked to pick up dog feces along this path which will only increase if dogs are made legal on it.

Let common sense prevail and maybe these same people who care so much about their dogs will spend an equal amount of time and effort helping people like Mel and Shaylene solve the serious problems that impact our island — traffic, affordable housing, vacation rentals, our infrastructure, the homeless people and more.

Glenn Mickens

Kapa‘a

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