comscore Jan. 3, 1979: City Council Is Inaugurated | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Back in the Day | Editorial

Jan. 3, 1979: City Council Is Inaugurated

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The newly elected Honolulu City Council was sworn into office yesterday, with Council Chairman Rudy Pacarro predicting a greater spirit of cooperation between the legislative body and Mayor Frank F. Fasi’s administration.

Three new and six incumbent Councilmen began their four-year terms at noon yesterday after being administered the oath of office by Chief Justice William S. Richardson in … ceremonies … in the Council’s chambers.

Councilman Frank W.C. Loo made the only overtly critical comments in a ceremony, which was otherwise smoothly planned and run.

Loo, while discussing a variety of resolutions, assailed what he called a “dictatorial rule” concentrated in the hands of four of his colleagues who hold all of the leadership and committee chairmanship positions.

The former majority leader and assistant floor leader, who this year holds no titles, said he lost his positions after disagreeing with the “Monday Night Massacre” firing of city Clerk Eileen Lota and others, and a policy requiring the news media and public to make appointments with councilmen before seeing them in their offices.

“But I want the people to know that I will not be bribed, I will not be intimidated, I will not be deterred in my determina- tion to serve the people,” he said. “The power-mad majority can keep their titles.” …

The inauguration this year was for the first time held in two phases: The first and official ceremony in the Council chambers and the second about an hour later in the Blaisdell Center Concert Hall.

The Council wanted to hold the inauguration at the spacious Concert Hall, but a city charter interpretation said it must take place in City Hall. Parts of the ceremony — including the swearing-in, Loo’s statements and voting on the resolutions — were thus conducted twice.

The Concert Hall ceremony was held amid pageantry resembling a small-scale opening of the Legislature. Councilmen seated at a table on stage and an audience of 1,200 watched a male hula troupe and listened to music by the Royal Hawaiian Band and entertainer Danny Kaleikini.

Lt. Gov. Jean King and U.S. Reps. Daniel Akaka and Cecil Heftel were among those attending. Fasi appeared briefly.

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