• Tuesday, September 18, 2018
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Election

District 41 – Matthew (‘Matt’) LoPresti (D)

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Full Name: Matthew Shelton LoPresti

Name on Ballot: Matthew (‘Matt’) LoPresti

Age: 42

Political Party: Democrat

Running For: House

District: 41

Email Address: matt_lopresti@yahoo.com

Current Job:

State representative; associate professor of philosophy and humanities, and chairman, Asian and Pacific Studies Program at Hawaii Pacific University

Place of birth: Pittsburgh

Campaign website: Matt4Ewa.com

Job history past 10 years:

State representative (2014-present).

Associate professor of philosophy and humanities & chairman of the Asian and Pacific Studies Program at Hawaii Pacific University (2007-Present)

Adjunct professor of philosophy at HPU, Chaminade University of Honolulu and Kapiolani Community College (2006)

Ever run for public office? If so, when? Outcome?

State representative, District 41; lost in 2012 and won in 2014.

Elected to Ewa Neighborhood Board in 2011.

Other civic experience or community service?

Vice chairman, Sierra Club, Oahu Group, (elected 2011-2013, re-elected 2013-2015).

Member, Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization (2015).

President, Townhomes at Ka Makana at Hoakalei (2010-present).

Volunteer with various community organizations like Surfrider Foundation and Ewa Beach Weed and Seed.

Anything else you’d like voters to know about you?

Education is my top priority. In my first term I have already proven myself to be very effective in bringing millions and millions of dollars to address the overcrowding, overheating and underfunding of Ewa Beach’s public schools. With your vote I can continue this progress.

What makes you qualified to be a state representative?

After my first term I have a better understanding of the process and worked hard to earn the trust and respect of my colleagues. Furthermore, I apply the critical thinking and moral reasoning skills developed from more than a decade of teaching and writing as a professor of philosophy.

Gov. Ige says he will once again propose increases to the state gas tax, vehicle weight tax and state registration fees to help pay for state road projects. Do you support his proposal?

As vice chairman of the House Committee on Transportation I played a key role in killing this triple tax increase. It died in our committee after passing the Senate because, among other things, the justification for it remains abundantly unclear beyond (Department of Transportation) threats to cancel vital highway expansions without it.

If the Legislature is again asked to extend Oahu’s half-percent excise tax surcharge to finance construction or operation of the rail system, would you support such an extension?

Had the city been more forthright, I believe the state Legislature would have approved the full amount necessary to complete the project. Completing the project is essential to creating transportation equity for Leeward and Central Oahu, however, it is time the city comes up with its own funding mechanisms.

Should the state play a role in cracking down on illegal vacation rentals in Hawaii?

Yes. The problem is so pervasive that it is contributing to increased cost of living for everyone by taking available residences off the market. Illegal rentals also impacts hotel jobs and disrupts communities. If you have to break the law to afford extra property, then you cannot afford that property.

Should the Legislature require that police officers in Hawaii use “body cameras,” and help to fund the use of those cameras?

Yes. I authored a bill (House Bill 1738) that does just this while also working to protect citizens’ 4th Amendment rights to privacy. My bill was incorporated into the final Senate bill that would have made this law. Unfortunately, the measure died. I will try again next year if re-elected.

Dozens of police officers in Hawaii are disciplined each year for committing crimes or violating departmental policies, but little information is released about the officers or their cases. Do you think there needs to be greater public disclosure?

Yes, of course. That is why I supported several measures for greater transparency as well as to implement a law enforcement standards and training board. We entrust officers with our lives on a daily basis and it is not too much to ask for transparency for this sort of thing.

4 comments

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  • “Education is my top priority.” This is not true, you let your political ambition get in the way of fighting for our keiki, and the millions you always tout was the results of your predecessor Rep Cabanilla and not you.

    “After my first term I have a better understanding of the process and worked hard to earn the trust and respect of my colleagues.” How about earning the trust and respect of the community you have dismissed time and time again in your term in office.

    “Furthermore, I apply the critical thinking and moral reasoning skills developed from more than a decade of teaching and writing as a professor of philosophy.” We need common sense thinking, not some philosophical academic drival, but what can be expected from someone who has never had a job that wasn’t paid by Government.

    “Completing the project is essential to creating transportation equity…” Transportation equity, since when is Government responsible for “transportation equity”, and what does that mean anyway. Do you want everyone to give up their mobility and ride the train to no where, or are planning a car in every garage. The State should not be bailing out the City.

    ” The problem is so pervasive that it is contributing to increased cost of living for everyone by taking available residences off the market. Illegal rentals also impacts hotel jobs and disrupts communities.” Where is the proof? There is none. This is typical progressive speak trying to pit the “Haves” vs. the “Have Nots”.

    I voted for you in 2014 and you’ve become just like the rest of your colleagues, nothing more than self promoting narcissists more concerned about yourself than the community that elected you.

    • You must be his opponent because as far as I can tell all of your criticisms miss the mark.

      This guy works very hard for Ewa Beach and has been very effective in his first term in office getting $100 million for all of our schools! That bill was only introduced and passed in 2016, so it couldn’t have been done by the former rep.

      • Name one of his accomplishments?

        The $100 million was the Governor’s initiative, and Lopresti didn’t due his due diligence before voting for it like finding out if DOE was ready, then when the proverbial $##t hits the van, he resorts to his favorite grandstanding tool by asking the AG to investigate.

        Lopresti is a disappointment and nothing more than the a YES man for the establishment that is turning Hawaii into the next Detroit!!

        • Well for only being in office for a little over a year, that seems like a pretty big accomplishment to me – people have been clamoring for that AC for a very long time and he helped get it done in his first term in office. Good for the Governor too, glad to see they can work well together on this important issue for our keiki!

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