The race for Kaua‘i is on

A flood of local candidates vying for seats in county, state and federal offices has poured in as the deadline to file nomination papers approaches.

All seven seats on the Kaua‘i County Council are up for grabs, and three incumbents have said they will not be seeking reelection.

Councilwoman Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho is running unopposed for county prosecutor and council members Mel Rapozo and JoAnn Yukimura have entered the mayoral race along with county Parks and Recreation Department Director Bernard Carvalho.

The next elected mayor will take office Dec. 1 for the remaining two years of the late Mayor Bryan Baptiste’s second term.

Prospective candidates have until July 22 to file at the county Elections Division office on Rice Street in Lihu‘e. The primary is Sept. 20. The general election is Nov. 4.

As of Friday, 15 residents from Lawa‘i to Princeville had pulled nomination papers at the Historic County Building, but only seven have officially filed to run for a position on the local lawmaking body. (The total excludes Rapozo and Yukimura.)

The incumbents seeking another two-year term on the council are Tim Bynum, Bill “Kaipo” Asing, Jay Furfaro and Ron Kouchi. Asing was appointed Monday to serve as interim mayor until Dec. 1.

According to the uncertified 2008 candidate filing information, the council candidate list also includes Robert Bartolo, Lani Kawahara, Joseph Ka‘auwai, Derek Kawakami, Kipukai “Leslie” Kuali‘i, Bob Cariffe, Thomas Leighton, Christobel Kealoha, John Hoff, Arthur Defries and Harry Kaneakua.

All four incumbents serving at the state Legislature representing Kaua‘i are seeking re-election. They are Sen. Gary Hooser, D-Kaua‘i/Ni‘ihau, and Reps. Hermina Morita, D-14th District; James Tokioka, D-15th District; and Roland Sagum, D-16th District.

‘Ele‘ele resident Joanne Georgi, a Republican, has pulled nomination papers to run against Hooser and Sagum. Candidates can only file to run for one position.

Hanalei resident Michael Sheehan, a Democrat, has pulled papers to run against Morita.

Seats on the state Board of Education and Office of Hawaiian Affairs will also be on the November ballot.

Kapa‘a resident Lawrence Fillhar has pulled papers, and Margaret Cox of Lihu‘e has filed to run for a position on the school board.

Defries, of Anahola, and Kapa‘a resident George Thronas have pulled papers to serve as an OHA trustee. Koloa resident Donald Cataluna filed to be a candidate on May 23.

At the federal level, the seats of U.S. Reps. Neil Abercrombie, D-1st District, and Mazie Hirono, D-2nd District, are up for election. The terms are two years with no limit.

Four candidates are looking to run against Hirono for the 2nd District congressional seat, which covers the Neighbor Islands and parts of O‘ahu surrounding Honolulu. They are Republicans Roger Evans and I Am, nonpartisan Elizabeth Stone, and Libertarian Lloyd Mallan of Kapa‘a.

The last day to register to vote in the primary is Aug. 21. The last day for the general election is Oct. 6.

Voters can start requesting mail-in absentee ballots on July 22.


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