Letters for Thursday, September 11, 2008

• Didn’t serve our needs

• Recycled letter

• Vital information may help with solutions

• How to choose a candidate

Didn’t serve our needs

I saw and read with interest the full-page advertisement that JoAnn Yukimura and friends published in your paper. Her attempt to dispel rumors reminds me of the saying “Thou Protesteth too Much.”

I am not knowledgeable about the rumors but I do have some facts to relate about what she didn’t do and should have during Hurricane ‘Iniki. I live in Princeville and have been a resident in this community for 25 years. When ‘Iniki struck I was president of the Princeville Community Association and was responsible for all the common maintenance and the supervision of the covenants then governing the community. When the hurricane struck and we lost all power our biggest problem became the disposal of all the rotting food stuffs. Most of the residents put the garbage in bags at the curb and very soon rats appeared and we had a major health problem. The owners of our refuse company lost their house and were unable to come to Princeville. I got in touch with the county engineer and asked for emergency help. He came back a day later and indicated that Mayor Yukimura said we were a private community and not to help us and we didn’t get any help for the next three weeks.

We finally got an independent trucking firm and our refuse company running and eventually solved the problem. It is interesing to note that the residents all pay normal real estate taxes and at the time of the hurricane we were in talks with the county to bring in the regular trash removal.

If she really did all those wonderful things for the community why did she ignore our community when we needed help? Many of us remember her poor performance during the hurricane and I think the rest of the island needs to know these facts before voting for her. These are facts and not rumors as I was there.

Richard Jacobsen


Recycled letter

This letter will probably hit the trash bin immediately as it contains some valid criticisms of The Garden Island.

The questions posed for the council candidates are unspecific but ask for specifics. Whoever constructed the questions didn’t seem to know much about our island. Where are the questions about overdevelopment? Where are the questions about the traffic situation? If you are a sitting councilmember have you ever, on a final vote, voted against a multi-family development?

The county General Plan called for specific percentages regarding development; would you abide by that? Would you vote “yes” or “no” on the tax plan now under consideration by the County Council? Many people have said the County Council is secretive about attorney opinions rendered by the County Attorneys Office on council matters. Do you support this continued secrecy or oppose it?

I submit that the questions submitted by The Garden Island are of little value. Much more study should have been done regarding candidates’ attitudes if TGI really wanted to give the islanders more valid information. I noticed also that asking whether a candidate is island-born or a mainlander reeks of discrimination. If you’re a mainlander who has been here five to ten years does that mean you should not be given the same status as someone born here?

The Garden Island, a lousy job of preparing questions.

Bob Yount


Vital information may help with solutions

Mahalo The Garden Island for the excellent in-depth coverage of the renewable energy conference recently held focusing on Kaua‘i’s needs.

Kudos go to the organizers and participants for their focused attention and extensive discussion. Along with the fantastic timing of Walter Lewis’ article that appeared on Sept. 6, followed by my letter the very next day, TGI’s vital role in keeping the public informed of our residents’ concerns and opinions on the very same topics is clearly evident.

Steve Hall’s proposal is now a matter of public awareness. Along with John Hoff, Steve and I have been in contact with several “shakers and movers” in both the public and private sectors to promote what might be done with respect to alternative energy, our landfill and sustainability concerns.

Bringing all these components together in print through The Garden Island newspaper has now provided the public crucial and vital information that may actualize solutions that have been sought after for so long.

I truly believe that TGI deserves an award for this timely and remarkable journalistic accomplishment.

Jose Bulatao Jr.


How to choose a candidate

In reviewing the ads and the sound bites that have resonated throughout the campaign season, I have come to the conclusion that there is a reasonable way to select a qualified candidate for office.

What qualities am I looking for?

Above and beyond, the person must be ethical. We are in a dilemma of ethical deterioration. As an example, we have ships that allegedly spew dirty smoke while at the harbor because they use very low-grade oil as fuel when they don’t have to, but do so because it is economically profitable. We have KIUC that burns cleaner naptha, diesel and biodiesel fuels, because they burn cleaner and more efficiently. Ethically, this is probably the correct choice, despite the higher cost. Unfortunately, we are now relying on politicians and laws to deal with our ethical degradation, because society in general is unable to make the right moral decisions we once took for granted.

Now, getting back to politics: A candidate must be ethical in their campaigns, he or she must practice what they preach. A candidate must be like me, full of common sense.

Why are they running? For a good part-time job? For personal gain? For public benefit? Are they literate? Are they puppets? Do they understand the scope of their office and the limitations? Do they know the difference between county and state issues? Do they have blinders on? Are they a one- issue person? Have they served the public in the past? Are they successful? To me, experience is important. Not all experience is from book learning. Some candidates have very impressive credentials, some have none whatsoever. What are they sacrificing to run?

Know your candidate. Do not vote for the most popular. Vote for the most qualified. In the immortal words of your mother, “Do your homework!”

Alton Amimoto



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