Letters for Friday, March 2, 2012

• Mahalo for advocating for the people of Kaua‘i • Mayor, KPD chief and no women in the commission • Mahalo to Tropic Care’s remarkable blitz

Mahalo for advocating for the people of Kaua‘i

Thank you John Hoff, for the outstanding letter “$4.09 million shortfall,” Feb. 28.

You obviously spent a lot of time researching and delving into how we, the tax payers, were getting deceived by the transactions that took place between Kaua‘i Lagoons and the county.

I find it deplorable that the public was made to believe that we were given this wonderful gift of 138 acres which is basically a worthless piece of land. We got it in exchange for the county granting Kaua‘i Lagoons rezoning rights worth $1.5 billion dollars or more — we literally “gave away the store” for this piece of property. As John’s investigation points out, “our county of Kaua‘i’s own real estate tax office appraised this property at $580,000.”

The appraisal was done when the property had 22 residential building sites. Since these sites were stripped and transferred to Kaua‘i Lagoons prior to closing of the property trade, this land is undoubtedly valued at a fraction of the $580,000 price.

Another downside of this transaction is that when it was announced at the County Council chambers in 2009, all members were ecstatic and praising Kaua‘i Lagoons for this wonderful gift — ”a place where families could picnic on the beach and fishermen could have their own private area to fish.” I was present at that meeting.

Again, why did it take a concerned citizen to find out what really happened in this “trade” when those we elect are paid to look after our interests?

This land was also proposed to be the county’s in-kind share of the multi-use path ($4.09 million) but since the greatly reduced assessed value of the land is no where near that figure it appears that the transaction will be even worse for the tax payer. And it is possible that airport security rules around that area may even prohibit 24/7 use of any path in that vicinity — one of the “good” things that the path proponents have bragged about.

And yes, John, more “fuzzy math” was given to us by those proponents of this path.

The total cost of it from Nawiliwili to Anahola (with spurs) was given in The Garden Island as $53.25 million. But, by “their” own numbers the 6.8 miles of completed path has cost $30.1 million meaning that the cost per mile is $4.44 million. Multiplying $4.44 million by 23.8 miles gives a total of $105.7 million and not the $53.25 million that they gave.

A spreadsheet by the state Department of Transportation will confirm this higher price. Why is the public being deceived?

Thank you, John, for being the people’s advocate. Too bad that we don’t have more elected officials following your lead.

Glenn Mickens, Kapa‘a

Mayor, KPD chief and no women in the commission

I am one who believes that the police, as well as all other departments in county government, should report directly to the mayor. However, I do not believe that is how the County Charter reads in spite of what the mayor’s “consigliare” claims.

When ordinary citizens do not agree with a law and just decide to disregard it, they commit civil disobedience and are subject to prosecution. Whether or not they think that the law is unwise or unjust is immaterial.

It is interesting that the present crisis between the mayor and the police chief, evidently, came about as the result of a complaint by a female police officer. It should be noted that the mayor has chosen to have a Police Commission which has no women members.

What kind of a signal does that send to female police officers as well as to the rest of the girls and women on the island?

Perhaps, if women were involved, we might have a more reasonable approach to the present situation.

 

Linda Estes, Koloa

Mahalo to Tropic Care’s

remarkable blitz

Although I am not entirely clear as to how much the remarkable two-week Tropic Care blitz can help our people with chronic health conditions, there are two areas that really do stand out, and I hope that people will take advantage of their amazing opportunity in these two areas.  

One is free eye checks and free corrective glasses. That’s a pretty good deal, that’ll work!  

The second is dental care. The backlog of Kaua‘i people who have decayed teeth and who don’t have up-front cash to pay a dentist is huge. We see this problem daily in our ER and it causes a lot of suffering and misery.

Ho’ola Lahua Hawai‘i conducts a gallant year-round effort in dentistry for those who can’t afford a private dentist, but their waiting list is months long.

Tropic Care does not have dental XRay equipment but they do cleaning, they can take care of visible cavities, and they can do extractions.

 And again, free. No appointments, first come first served, including Saturday and Sunday.

This is huge. Please get there.  

Also, you know me and you know I can’t end without saying to our Tropic Care workers: Please enjoy our beautiful beaches and our ocean on your time off, and please be careful and swim near a lifeguard.

View www.kauaiexplorer.com for daily ocean safety conditions. And check out the iPhone app Kaua‘i Beach Guide.

And thank you for helping us!

Monty Downs, M.D.

Wilcox Hospital ER

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