LIHUE — Three qualified candidates have announced they will be running for the office of Kauai mayor.
The community leaders vying for the position are County Council Chair Mel Rapozo, Councilmember Derek Kawakami and Lenny Rapozo, director of the county Department of Parks and Recreation.
The names of the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes in the primary election on Aug. 11 will be placed on the ballot for the general election on Nov. 6.
Candidates interested in running for mayor must have served as “duly qualified resident electors” of the county for at least three years immediately prior to election, and be U.S. citizens at least 30 years old. Duly qualified electors are trained though county positions that prepare them to perform the tasks and duties of fulfilling the office.
Regular annual salary for the position is $132,000 for a term of four years, with no more than two consecutive terms allowed. The County Council provides a contingency fund of at least $2,500 to also be expended by the mayor for public purposes.
All seven positions on the County Council also will be open for election in 2018. To be eligible to run for that office, citizens must be duly qualified electors of the county for at least two years preceding their appointment. Non-residents and felons are ineligible to serve.
The council adopts rules for the organization of committees and the transactions of its business. The council chair receives an annual salary of $63,879, while the six additional councilmembers each earn $56,781 annually.
At the 2016 general election, Kauai residents voted to establish a permanent Charter Review Commission. The Office of Boards and Commissions is responsible for forming the commission, which consists of seven at-large members appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the County Council to staggered, three-year terms. The Charter Review Commission reviews operations of county government and may propose amendments or a new charter at any general or special election.
The county’s Salary Commission reviews and establishes the salary cap of all elected officials and officers of the county, and adopts policies governing salary-setting decisions. It consists of seven at-large members also appointed by the mayor and confirmed by council to staggered, three-year terms.
Some of the highest-paying county positions include managing director ($122,539), county clerk ($119,357), planning director ($119,357), county attorney ($119,357), director of finance ($119,357), computer systems officer ($115,092), assistant chief of police ($150,408), fire chief ($127,313), deputy county engineer ($114,582), civil engineer ($138,132) and director of Parks and Recreation ($119,357).