Letters for Tuesday, May 13, 2014

• Dear President Obama • Council elected to make decisions • County needs to manage money better 

Dear President Obama

From the White House’s golden dining rooms  — please pay a visit to your nearest senior care homes and see how your fragile citizens function 24/7 with the unsung heroes of caregivers. The fragile seniors they serve are the citizens who had paid their taxes and dues throughout their lifelong careers to make this country great. They will survive and thrive because of the dedicated caregivers who mopped the floors, changed their diapers, fed them, bathed them, took them to doctor’s appointments, a million and one things, 24/7. Social Security does not cover this care, but if we eliminate taxes on seniors in care homes, it will help. They had paid their taxes and dues by their work.

Now that the seniors are out of the workforce with their meager savings, senior care homes are not cheap but necessary. We are not asking for tax dollars but a tax break for seniors in need and to establish a recognition day for all caregivers, so the public may know their work and shower them voluntarily with gifts and love in appreciation for their hard work and dedication. All charitable contributions are welcome. Sooner or later, unless you are in the upper 1 percent, every one needs professional adult care. Where will we be without the dedicated caregivers?

The untrained, friendly relatives or neighbors will not have time, patience or the skill to service the infirm, helpless seniors 24/7. What will seniors do than when they need help? Mr. President, please recognize the need and help the seniors who built this great nation. The U.S. helps others worldwide. Now is the time to take care our own, together with approval of Congress, please mandate a recognition day for caregivers.

We are not asking for a holiday for caregivers because they are needed every working day except their regular day off,  just a recognition day for caregivers.


Chester Lau


Council elected to make decisions

I assume the reason that county employees are not allowed on the commission is due to “conflict of interest.” That makes sense.

I also believe that is part of the charter itself. Did the voters have to vote on that too? I doubt it. I assume, or at least I hope, the County Council made that decision.

Perhaps we should amend the charter to prohibit county employees and all their friends and relatives from voting on this issue. Oh wait! That would be un-American and likely unconstitutional. There wouldn’t be very many left to vote. I have a better idea. Why don’t we just let our elected officials, the County Council, use their own good judgment and decide who sits on all commissions? Why don’t we introduce a charter amendment to do that?

Or are we stuck with seven council members who are afraid of, or tired of, being on the losing end of a 4-3 vote.

The introduced amendment creates just another division amongst the public.

Let the council make the decisions. That’s what we elect you for.


Larry Arruda


County needs to manage money better 

I can no longer not state my opinion! This is not the time to fix fiscal fiascoes by raising taxes and increasing fees. This council has been totally irresponsible for the fiscal state of our county. Two weeks ago, they suggested raising the fees at Wailua. That was followed by the story that the cost for the suit by councilman Bynum will cost $750,000-plus and additionally will raise our liability insurance rate for the claim. The cost for special “council” will cost another $1,000,000-plus.

Is this perhaps why the mayor vetoed the GMO bill? Is he afraid he will lose current revenue? Is that why the mayor supports the Hawaii Dairy project? He expects revenue from those who are destroying one of the most beautiful, culturally significant sites on our island. It’s time for the mayor and the council to tighten their belt and look at the wasteful expenditures our council and mayor are responsible for. It’s time for a county manager with business experience to set and manage our budget. Is this an easy solution? No. We need a manager, council and mayor that can make better choices on how to spend our dollars. Our island is being sold to the highest bidder, from agriculture to legal services.

November is the time to let your representatives know that you are unhappy with their performance and proposals. Make the time to vote. No higher taxes. No higher fees.


Kathy Sheffield



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