Time for “bold action”

LIHUE — Affordable housing, health and the environment, food and energy self-sufficiency, traffic congestion, and “keeping a lid on local taxes”: these are Gary Hooser’s top priorities.

The Kauai County Councilman has formally filed for re-election and said “there is much work still to be done.”

If re-elected, this would be Hooser’s third term on the council. He has been a Kauai resident since 1980 and was a small business owner until 1998, when he was elected to his first stint on the Kauai County Council. He left that position to join the State Senate in 2002 and represented Kauai and Niihau until 2010. In 2012, Hooser left his office at the state and was once again elected to the County Council.

“While there is seemingly no shortage of ideas and solutions to all our county challenges, there is too often a lack of political will and the courage to take bold action,” Hooser said. “It is (my) hope to again serve on the Kauai County Council and perhaps the catalyst for such action.”

Hooser said he’s targeting the “seemingly intractable affordable housing issue” with a new measure, Bill 2627, which would significantly increase the supply of new affordable rentals in the Lihue Planning District. He’s partnering with Councilmember Mason Chock to champion the bill.

“The only thing standing between us and dramatically increasing and maintaining a large inventory of affordable housing is the lack of political will to take bold action,” Hooser said.

He said he’s willing to take that bold action, not only on the affordable housing issue, but also on Kauai’s own food productivity and industrial agriculture business.

“While it is a tough road to go down, we must say no to industrial dairies and to large scale pesticide intensive research crops that provide zero food for local consumption while polluting our environment and damaging our health,” Hooser said. “We must put feeding ourselves and protecting our communities’ health and environment first.”

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