Full name: Jonathan Wong
Name on ballot: Jonathan Wong
Political Party: Democrat
Running for: House
Email address: email@example.com
Current job: Self-employed
Place of birth: San Mateo, Calif.
Campaign website: www.wongdistrict2.com
Job history past 10 years:
2015: Legislative aide, county Councilwoman Margaret Wille District 9
2013-14: Senator at large/vice president of UH Hilo Student Association
2009: Online marketing consultant, Frontier Solar
2009, Online marketing manager, All Seasons Event Rentals
2007: Marketing consultant, Tequila El Rey
2006: Promotions/business acquisitions for Seemless Entertainment, Fashion, Music and Events.
Ever run for public office? If so, when? Outcome?
Other civic experience or community service?
2016: Member of Waiakea Lions Club
2016: Volunteer for Hilo Rotary Club
2013-14: Member of UH Hilo Sustainability Committee, member of Student Sustainability Coalition of Hawaii
Anything else you’d like voters to know about you?
I have spent the past several months going door-to-door in my district to meet people and learn about their concerns. This experience has prepared me to represent them in a meaningful way, and strengthened my resolve to be a fair and honest participant in the government they deserve.
What makes you qualified to be a state representative?
At a time when most Americans are fed up with politics-as-usual, candidates like myself who are not part of the establishment are well qualified to bring new ideas and energy to longstanding issues that have gone unresolved. I am honest, hardworking and I care.
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?
While I share the governor’s commitment to funding government functions, I find it hard to believe that raising taxes is the only way to achieve this goal. My instincts tell me the public is better served when legislators make taxpayer dollars go farther by eliminating fraud, waste and abuse.
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?
Oahu’s rail construction is the perfect example of how deceptive bidding practices on large capital improvement projects suck taxpayers into paying for extensions and cost overruns. I would only vote for an extension if it were tied to future cost cutting concessions and bidding process reforms.
Should the state play a role in cracking down on illegal vacation rentals in Hawaii?
People are sharing their homes in an effort to supplement their inadequate incomes. While it’s important for everyone to follow the law, the use of terms like “cracking down” seem harsh when people are struggling to get by. I support guidelines that work for everyone and make compliance easy.
Should the Legislature require that police officers in Hawaii use “body cameras,” and help to fund the use of those cameras?
Yes. Technology changes every aspect of modern society and policing is no different. Decisions these officers make can have life or death consequences and we owe it to the public to maximize transparency.
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. Disclosure increases transparency and helps raise the standard for police conduct.