Sunday, Aug. 14, 2022 |
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• Age: 65
• Occupation: Retired
• Town of Residence: Kalaheo
• Prior experience in government/leadership: Kaua‘i Project Kindness
Q: The median price of a single-family home on Kaua‘i is over $1 million, and the county’s 2018 General Plan reported 44% of all households are cost-burdened. How will you address the affordable-housing crisis in Kaua‘i County?
I am in favor of micro sewer systems with water-treatment facilities for mid-rise multiple dwelling units in urban areas. Proposed 2% of real property tax for direct funding of affordable housing was recently discussed by council and will likely be on the ballot this year.
Q: The County Council sets real-property-tax rates as part of the county budget process. What changes, if any, would you make to the way that property is taxed on-island?
Split rate property tax was designed to force land onto the market. Legislators also hoped to break up the large land estates and produce a more egalitarian distribution of wealth in the islands.
At present, without a new checkup, utilizing often-outdated, possibly inaccurate information — with only recent property-sales figures being updated — assessors have to rely upon those collectively attached estimated market values.
I agree with Gary Hooser’s recent blog in which he asks the following questions… Why does Kaua‘i County have the lowest property tax rates for hotels and resorts in the entire state of Hawai‘i?
What public purpose does it serve to charge the Hyatts, the Marriotts, the Hiltons, and so many other off-shore foreign corporations less money than any other county in Hawai‘i? If the Kaua‘i County Council had the courage to increase property taxes on hotels, resorts and TVRs to the same level now charged by the City and County of Honolulu, our community would benefit to the tune of over $23 million annually.
Q: The coronavirus pandemic decimated the tourism industry Kaua‘i – and the state – is so reliant upon. Should Kaua‘i County make economic diversity a priority, and if so, how?
Kauai has the ability to be far less dependent on importation. An example of a successful island business model is Kauai Shrimp who support over 50 families and contribute $50,000 plus or minus a year to charitable organizations.
Increase support and funding for these existing programs. Cut and pasted from the Council website…
Administrative support and oversight of the Kauaʻi Sunshine Farmers’ Markets.
High School Agriculture Internship Program.
Various development programs assisted: University of Hawaii at Manoa and Agriculture Development Corporation.
Exploration of possibilities for a range fed beef program on Kaua’i and improvement of logistics for joint on-island cattle finishing.
Mayor’s initiative program: Kauaʻi label of origin, improved “deluxe” Sunshine Market.
Participation in and support for a variety of agricultural events organized by other agencies such as Kaua’i County Farm Bureau Fair, Kaua’i Garden Fair, Agricultural and Environmental Awareness Day and others.
The Specialist maintains memberships and participates in meetings of a variety of state-wide organizations such as the Hawaiʻi Farm Bureau Federation, Hawaiʻi Forest Industry Association, Hawaiʻi Tropical Fruit Growers, Hawaiʻi Farmers Union United, Garden Island Resource Conservation District, and Hawaiʻi Papaya Industry Association Grant opportunities
As required by law, grants are developed with non-profits from agricultural industry sectors such as: Hawaii Tropical Flower and Foliage Association, Kauaʻi Chapter, Kauaʻi County Farm Bureau, Kauaʻi Cattlemen’s Association, Garden Island Research, Conservation and Development, Inc., Hawaiʻi Aquaculture Development Association, and others. Agricultural grants are not available for individual businesses and farmers.
Q: Kaua‘i continues to look for a new landfill site, years after its search began. The clock is ticking: The Kekaha landfill is currently projected to reach capacity in January 2027. What is your preferred solution?
The life expectancy of the Kekaha Landfill is five years plus or minus. Once work begins, landfills take about 10years to complete. The Maʻalo site has the capacity to handle solid waste for over 250 years, but has been abandoned due to FAA and DOT opposition even though the proposed site is located outside of the established geographic criteria. The only other choice is the Kekaha Mauka. Kauaʻi has to commit and start construction or face the possibility of having to ship our solid waste to Oʻahu.
In any event, we must increase efforts to reduce the ninety one tons of solid waste per year sent to the landfill. The polystyrene ban in 2021 is a step in the right direction. Perhaps requiring the big box stores to at least help with plastics and ship them back to a mainland facility. Introduce liquid less laundry detergent products and eliminate the traditional plastic packaging. Educate, advocate, enable and assist government and residents to transition to a zero waste society.
Another way to drastically reduce the annual amount of waste is by incineration using scrubbers and generating energy at the same time.
Q: What is driving you to seek election or re-election, and why should voters give you their vote?
I have spent the last two years familiarizing myself with the working of the Kauaʻi County government. The General Plan only works if we all truly work together in harmony. Although I have researched many of the matters that have been presented to the Council and have my own opinions on them, I will promise to listen to the voices of those who elected me to the office before casting my vote.
I love Kauaʻi and as part of the County Council I will ensure that services are being effectively and economically delivered by all of the offices, agencies, departments, programs and operations for which the County is responsible. I will join the quorum in producing a balanced annual and capital budget and provide sufficient revenues to fund them.
In closing, I humbly ask for your endorsement and vote.
I will absolutely not vote for Ms. Jauch.
Ms. Jauch suggests using incinerators to burn trash on our island. In my place of birth, Maryland, the garbage incinerator in Baltimore (named Wheelabrator Baltimore) is the biggest polluter by far in the entire state of 6 million people. It’s the dirtiest fuel possible – old batteries, electronics, used motor oil, moldy waste, and on and on. We DO NOT need toxic waste spewed into our island air 24/7/365.
The ONLY group this benefits is KIUC, who gets a cheap source of very dirty electricity (far more toxic than fossil fuels), and no, they will not lower rates, it will just increase their profit margin even more, at the expense of our air quality and health.
The fact that she believes this is a good idea shows incredibly bad decision making. I’ll be voting for someone with sane views.
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