And so it comes down to today.
The Kauai County Council will meet this morning at 9 at the Historic County Building in Lihue to consider overriding Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr.’s veto of Bill 2491.
It could be another marathon meeting. Emotions of those awaiting a decision will likely be strong. It will be important then, no matter what happens, to maintain composure.
Six council members will hear more testimony before taking a vote to override the veto of the bill that would require Kauai’s largest agricultural companies to disclose their use of pesticides and genetically modified crops, establish buffer zones and require the county to complete a study on the impacts of the industry.
To override the mayor’s veto, it will take five of the six council members to vote in favor of doing that. If they don’t, the bill dies.
Based on how things went when the mayor announced his veto (accusations and later, threats), it could be a heated meeting. Security will be tight. There will be metal detectors to screen those wanting in. Police will be on hand.
The council passed the bill on a 6-1 vote. That was with Nadine Nakamura, who voted yes. But she’s since moved on to take a job as county manager.
That leaves council members Jay Furfaro, Tim Bynum, JoAnn Yukimura, Gary Hooser, Ross Kagawa and Mel Rapozo.
How will this turn out today, assuming the council does vote on the override?
Well, we believe Hooser, Bynum, Furfaro and Yukimura will vote for the override and will stick with their original stance. Rapozo is a no vote. Kagawa voted yes last time, but has stated his mind is not made up.
“Like every decision I make, I don’t go in there with the idea that this is my decision and it is set in stone,” Kagawa said. “Nothing is set in stone.”
TGI readers have indicated what they think will go down.
According to our online poll this week, 66 percent say the council will override the mayor’s veto. Nearly 24 percent said they don’t know, and 10 percent said the council will not override the veto because “the mayor has too much influence.”
Our prediction: The override fails. All it takes is one council member to change their vote from the original vote on Bill 2491 and the mayor is a man of influence. But whether it’s yes or no on the override, we ask both sides to remain respectful. Don’t let emotions get the best of you. That’s easier said than done, we know, because there is great passion from the different points of views, and there is a great deal at stake.
Enough from us. It’s time to hear from the council. What say you?