Letters for Monday, June 20, 2011

The badly worded KIUC ballot

It makes me wonder. If they can’t even word a ballot clearly, how can they make intelligent decisions on complex matters?

A “yes” vote means: Hydro may not be developed. Millions of dollars to be spent on seven years of “study.” This plan will delay hydro for at least a decade. Electric bills will reflect costs for consultants’ salaries/fees, airfares, lodging, entertainment, all expenses incurred by the newly adopted Free Flow Power Mainlanders.

Tracts of land will be cleared for massive concrete areas and facilities. Eminent Domain can be declared to take residents’ land surrounding and below facilities and water will be withheld from rivers and streams because FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) will have authority over State laws. Fish will be impacted. Waterfalls will be trickles. Foliage along waterways will brown out. That’s what will happen when FFP/FERC/Mainland Money Interests become the controllers. It is cheaper to send them packing now and eat the $400,000 they are already demanding for a few months of “consulting.”

A “no” vote means: Hydro will go forward sooner and cheaper. Local water customs and concerns will be respected. Electric bills will not be paying for the Mainlanders’ salaries, profits and expenses. There are eight hydro projects already here that just need to be updated.

I hope this helps clarify the intentionally misleading wording on the ballot. Please vote “no” for Kaua‘i. A “no” vote is a vote for hydro done the right way and staying under local control.

Did anyone think these Mainlanders, including David Bissel, came here to help us? Once Kaua‘i’s little co-op gets traded on the stock market, Mr. Bissell and his Mainland troupe will have made their money and be gone. But their bill will still be here for us to pay off for decades.

Elaine Dunbar, Lihu‘e

Mahalo from Kaua‘i Tennis Association

The Lihu‘e Tennis Courts at Wilcox Schools have a new lighting system. Lenny Rapozo of the county Parks and Recreation department installed new nets, and thanks to the efforts of the Kashimas (Kirstie, Davis and Cory), Dan Miyamoto, Shay and Taryn Orial, Tracy Tucker and Buddy Lum-Tucker, the backboards and cabanas (aka dugouts) have been painted.

The Wailua Houselots Tennis Courts also received some TLC with the help of Frank Medeiros and the diehards who love to play there.

Lastly, thanks go to Darlene Joseph, James Hasenyager and Tammy Quinlan for offering Play to Learn junior lessons this summer.

Carolyn Lum, Lihu‘e

Imagine the possibilities

Wouldn’t it be great to see this headline and story published all over the U.S.: “KIUC, co-op in Hawai‘i, is first utility in the U.S. to provide residential photovoltaic systems to the entire community”?

The Board of Directors, in their unique foresight and sense of responsibility to their community, approved a measure which immediately would begin outfitting photo voltaic systems to the 25,000 or so residences on this unique island. Up-front money for materials and labor, all purchased locally, would be provided by KIUC. Kilowatt hours saved by consumers would be used to re-pay the loan. All this was made possible by the forward thinking board of directors and the truly open and honest dialog between KIUC and the community. This approach enabled us to do it “ourselves” without state or federal meddling. It will provide immediate relief from costly oil price fluctuations, less oil imports are required since less kilowatts are generated.

Peter Tennberg, Koloa

Thank you, directors, for your commitment

We elected the Board of Directors of the Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative to manage the business of the co-op. We have entrusted this responsibility and duty to these individuals, most of which I voted for.

This democratically controlled entity allows for the challenge of any BOD decision, which is happening with the ballot question of the process of exploring and implementing the renewable resource of water generated electricity.

This referendum is based on a lack of trust in the BOD. There will inevitably be issues that need consideration in the process of generating more hydro electricity on Kaua‘i, a goal we all should agree on.

The work the BOD does for us in attaining this goal should be appreciated, respected, and trusted. That is the job we elected them to do. I appreciate their effort and commitment, and feel we should encourage their continuing diligence.

Questioning a BOD decision is the foundation of our democracy, and at the same time, an insult to the integrity of each individual director, all of whom voted in favor of this contract. They don’t deserve this lack of trust.

We elected these directors to lead us. My “yes” vote is my affirmation in my trust in each of the KIUC directors’ commitment and willingness to serve our community. Thank you for your strength and commitment, Jan TenBruggencate, Allan Smith, Peter Yukimura, Phil Tacbian, Carol Bain, Steve Rapozo, David Iha, Stewart Burley, and Ben Sullivan.

Michael Curtis, Koloa

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