Category Archives for "Politics"

November 30, 2016

Dangerous Herbicide Drift endangers Hawaii Residents

Governor David Ige: Take action now to protect the people!

I signed a petition on Action Network telling Hawai‘i Governor David Ige to Demand the State of Hawai`i act now to protect the people!.

The world’s largest chemical corporations are using the Hawaiian Islands for open air testing of pesticides tied to experimental genetically engineered seeds.

In the last three years, thousands of Hawai`i residents marched, testified, and went door-to-door to pass laws in the counties of Kaua`i, Maui and Hawai`i to protect our communities from harmful pesticides.  And we won, despite millions of dollars of industry opposition. But the chemical companies sued our counties to block enforcement, and the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that only the State of Hawai`i, and not the counties, has the power and responsibility to protect Hawaii’s people and environment from pesticides.

The message from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is clear: The power and responsibility to protect Hawaii’s people and our environment from pesticides is in Governor Ige’s hands.

In May 2016, a report funded by the State called for the following actions to protect the health of Hawaii’s people and land:

  • Create and enforce statewide pesticide Buffer Zones Statewide mandatory and thorough disclosure of pesticide use (both restricted use and general use)
  • Collect more accurate health data that helps scientists identify links between pesticides and health impacts on children, babies and families Air, soil and water testing

The State has ignored its own advisors.  The report was written by a panel of experts after a year-long “Joint Fact-Finding” process and yet it has ignored their recommendations.

We  demand immediate action by the Governor to implement basic protections recommended by the State’s own State-funded report. Governor Ige could enact every single one of the recommendations, while not affecting jobs. Moreover, the state legislature has already appropriated $500,000 to implement the recommendations of the JFFG report.

Sign the petition today to demand the State step up and meet its responsibility to the people of Hawai`i now!

Join me and take action! Click Here

Thanks!

November 6, 2016

Thomas Square – What the City Doesn’t want you to know.

The Mayor has a crazy idea to commercialize Thomas Square, which is a public park and a special historic site for the Hawaiian Nation. The City is going through the process of getting public input by Monday, November 7. We encourage you to testify “against” this idea to the address at the bottom of this message. Help us keep Thomas Square a Public Park that we can all use freely. Mahalo Nui Loa for your help. Dave & Sherry.

Thomas Square must remain a public park.

!COMMENTS DUE MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7th!

 

thomas-square-fountain-to-be-destroyed

Thomas Square Park fountain to be destroyed

Thomas Square is being transferred from the City’s Department of Parks and Recreation to the Department of Enterprise Services, and is facing major renovation.

 

Amongst other things, this means:

 

  • Thomas Square (Hawaiʻiʻs oldest park) will essentially No Longer Be a Public Park.
  • The “Hawaiian Flag” walkway pattern, the fountain, and other major features Will Be Destroyed.
  • There will be a COMMERCIAL focus. The Department of Enterprise Services is a “self-sustaining” department, meaning it is designed to create its own revenue.
  • Goals include making Thomas Square a “World Class Destination” and part of the newly gentrified “Arts District” of Honolulu.
  • The Houseless (including many Kanaka Maoli with roots in the area) will be chased from the area to make it more “presentable”. “Food Not Bombs” (our longstanding five year weekly Potluck and Music Jam for the Houseless) will be kicked out of Thomas Square Park.
  • Thomas Square Will Be Closed for an essentially undetermined length of time while renovation takes place.

 

Here’s an article by H. Doug Matsuoka that can be helpful for your comment: “What The City Doesn’t Want You To Know About Thomas Square” http://www.dougnote.com/2016/07/what-city-doesnt-want-you-to-know-about.html

 

Please Comment on the Draft EA: goo.gl/HJSvsU

 

Mahalo!

 

Written Comments are to be Postmarked by Monday, November 7, 2016
Robert J. Kroning, P.E.
650 South King Street
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813
If you can’t get it together to physically mail your comment you can email it. They may not accept email as official testimony, but if many folks do this, the City will see the amount of public concern, which is a win for us.

 

Email Comments to:
mayor@honolulu.gov
Cate Cullison at CCullison@PBRHawaii.com
Robert Kroning at RKroning@Honolulu.gov
You must include your name and physical home address in your email.

 

 

October 24, 2016

Mililani Trask OHA potential conflict of interest

I support Chris Lee. IMO, He is smart, conscientious and has done good things for his district and the State.

I have always felt Mililani Trask was more interested in her power than in serving the community. Now I feel I have collaboration for what till now was simply a gut feeling. Representative Lee’s letter follows. It is very revealing of what I believe is a pattern of behavior.

From Rep. Chris K C Lee Oct. 20 2016
Aloha,

I wouldn’t be writing today if it wasn’t critically important.

There is a race I’m writing to ask for your consideration for get
involved with. I argue it’s the most important race in Hawaii this
election year. That’s because it’s outcome will determine whether we
will retain our ability to continue pushing on environmental issues, or
if everything will become exponentially harder. Our biggest wins in
recent years – (and many wouldn’t have been possible without groups like the Sierra Club –
from our 100% renewable mandate, to our water issues, to the
Papahanumokuakea expansion), were only possible because of the support of
Native Hawaiian leaders.

OHA doesn’t represent all Native Hawaiian
voices, but they do represent a significant voice from that community.
Without public support from OHA, I can promise you these victories would
not have been possible, or would have been severely watered down.
Politically, that voice supportive of our issues is about to be silenced.

With the credibility of the S C and other environmental groups already
diminished because there’s no longer involvement with elections, I’ve
been cashing in my political capital along with a few others, in order
to keep pushing things forward. But there’s only so much of that to go
around and after this election cycle, there won’t be much political
leverage left. The most painful nail in the coffin will be the loss of
regular support of OHA for our issues. That group’s support alone isn’t
going to pass legislation, but without it, it will certainly stop things
from moving. That’s because opponents look for any reason to kill a
bill, and if there’s a question about where the Native Hawaiian
community falls, it’s one of the easiest ways to stop a bill or
initiative in it’s tracks.

This year Mililani Trask is challenging Bob Lindsey for an OHA seat (on Big Island). She
won the primary election with slightly more votes than Bob ( Bo Kahui got ). If Mililani
wins, as an incredibly loud and outspoken voice on issues, she could
realistically neutralize OHA from taking a position on much of anything.
Bob has been on the right side of most things, but more importantly,
he’s logical, reasonable, smart, and most of all he isn’t in it for
himself.

I have to disclose I’ve had Mililani Trask come after me and accuse me
of all sorts of crazy things from being a racist to “anti-renewable
energy” and everything in-between. She has clearly made things up about
people when it is convenient, but worst of all, appears to have a
serious conflict of interest in some issues because she has a personal
financial stake in her agenda.

Here’s Ian Lind’s blog coverage of that:

Rep. Chris Lee drawn into pre-election exchange with Mililani Trask, OHA candidate

Here’s what I wrote laying it all out:

IDG lobbyist Mililani Trask unhappy I chose our community over her employer

This is the single, most important race of the year, because it could
have profound and long-lasting effects on our ability to do anything
significant to protect our environment in Hawaii. It’s late in the
election cycle with just weeks to go. But now is the most critical time
to get involved, and a statement or endorsement means more now than it
ever would before. I’ve spent a LOT of my own political capital and
taken serious personal risks getting involved with this, but it’s that
important and I refuse to stand idly by while our ability to protect the
things we cherish most about this state is flushed away.

I’m asking for your help to reach out to other SC board members and
consider getting involved. Forward this along to the other board members
if it helps. This is the most important election this year and we need
to do something about it. Feel free to call me anytime if you want to
talk, or I’m happy to meet to discuss.

Thanks for your time and consideration,
Chris Lee”

July 23, 2016

Industrial hemp is not for getting high.

Hemp Hemp Hooray! Congratulations Cynthia Thielen

The Governor recently approved Act 228 – establishing a 5-year program to grow industrial hemp in Hawaii. This exciting program paves the way for a vibrant, local industry based on this versatile crop with over 25,000 uses/products, including building materials, nutritional and health care products, soil remediation, animal feed, with beneficial ripple-effects for our local business sector, economy and environment.

I want to thank Civil Beat for their excellent coverage of this development, and for their nice comments about my effectiveness as a Legislator:

“Beneficial circumstances and the dogged persistence of one legislator over many years intersected in this year’s legislative session in the form of Senate Bill 2659 — aka the Hemp Bill, which Gov. David Ige wisely signed into law. 

“Talk of legalizing hemp cultivation had kicked around the Legislature for many sessions, with state Rep. Cynthia Thielen keeping the conversation alive year to year…Sometimes, the good guys and the right ideas win out.

And once again, Cynthia Thielen needs our support and your vote in the upcoming August 13th Primary Election. There is no Democratic opposition and she is opposed in the primary by an ultra-conservative, tea party candidate.  This is serious. In the last election, Cynthia won by a little over 300 votes.  Joan Hood, her challenger has spent the last two years registering voters amongst her base.

If you vote Absentee, keep an eye out for your ballot as these will be mailed on July 22.

For your vote for Cynthia to be valid, be sure to fill in the box by “Republican Party” at the top left of the ballot and vote only for Republican candidates…or your ballot will not be counted. The Mayor’s race is nonpartisan so you can vote for any nonpartisan candidate as well. No Democratic candidate on the ballot has any significant opposition.

If you want to be represented in the State House by an advocate for our environment and who sincerely cares about people your choice is clear.

Vote for Cynthia Thielen.

Please share this with you Kailua friends and your social media.

‘A’ohe hana nui ke alu ‘ia. — No task is too big when done together by all.

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