Candidates tussle over homeless | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Candidates tussle over homeless

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Peter Carlisle, left, and Charles Djou, right, looked to each other in agreement past Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell on Tuesday evening during a televised mayoral forum sponsored by Hawaii News Now and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Peter Carlisle, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and Charles Djou engaged in a televised mayoral forum that was moderated by Hawaii News Now’s Mileka Lincoln on Tuesday evening. Topics discussed included homelessness, housing and ethics.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell touted his “compassionate disruption” and Housing First strategies for tackling chronic homelessness while major opponents Charles Djou and Peter Car­lisle declared them failures during a forum sponsored by Hawaii News Now and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on Tuesday night.

Compassionate disruption has involved trying to locate housing for the chronically homeless while at the same time enforcing laws that forbid storing property and sitting or lying on sidewalks.

In addition, with Housing First, Caldwell said, “you house someone first with their addictions, with their mental illness, and you help them get better, and we’re doing that in the City and County of Honolulu.” He said that last year a contract with the Institute for Human Services helped house 175 individuals, while an upcoming contract with U.S. Vets will house between 175 and 200 more.

But both Djou, a former City Council member and U.S. representative, and Carlisle, a former mayor and city prosecutor, said the problem still is getting worse.

“What we’re doing right now isn’t working as homelessness keeps on going up every single year,” Djou said. To hail a 1 percent increase in homelessness as a success story is akin to having a mechanic telling a car owner the vehicle is still broken and it’s 1 percent worse, he said. “Would you still hire that mechanic again? We’ve got to do better.”

Carlisle said he would prefer a “personalized intervention and consequences” approach. “You take a look at every one of these people: ‘Why is this person chronically homeless?’” Based on that assessment, “you triage that person,” Carlisle said. “The consequences could be a change in medication, it could be getting a person out of a particular area.”

Djou said he agreed with Car­lisle on dealing with the chronically homeless. “What we need to be doing is confronting them and getting counseling for them,” he said, adding that he would enlist the help of private nonprofits in that effort. Regarding those who simply choose homelessness as a lifestyle, “for those I do think we need to enforce the law.”

To address the housing crunch, Djou reiterated his call to build taller residential buildings in urban Honolulu in order to preserve more pristine areas. “We of course don’t want to turn Honolulu into the skyline of Chicago or Manhattan here, but can we go a little bit higher? The answer is yes, absolutely,” he said, saying that the largest local skyscraper, the First Hawaiian Bank Tower, is between 450 and 500 feet. (It is actually 429 feet.)

Carlisle and Caldwell agreed affordable housing could only be improved by building more units in the urban core.

Carlisle said he would continue to reduce other city operations in order to fund infrastructure necessary for housing.

Caldwell said his administration has been all about infrastructure, from improving sewer capacity to improving parks “so that we can live in a more dense, urban core. I want to make the city more city so that we can keep the country country.”

During an “Insights on PBS Hawaii” forum Monday night, Djou and Carlisle ganged up on Caldwell, accusing him of engineering the resignation of longtime Ethics Commission Executive Director Chuck Totto.

Djou said the commission “has been completely railroaded” and that Totto, shortly after Caldwell took office, “started asking the wrong questions” by delving into a luau sponsored by the mayor’s supporters. “I didn’t always agree with (Totto),” he said, recalling his time on the City Council. “But I thought he was a good, hardworking, dedicated public servant.”

Djou said he would work to have Totto reinstated.

Carlisle, who has been Totto’s attorney during his clashes with members of the seven-member commission, said that “absolutely and unequivocally, there has been a complete evisceration of ethics in the City and County of Honolulu. It’s been booted out the door.”

Caldwell’s three commission appointees, all retired judges, have been doing his bidding, Carlisle suggested.

Caldwell denied flatly that he provided an agenda for his commission appointees, and noted that “a majority of the members were appointed by Peter.” Decisions that have been made about the commission’s leadership and staffing are being made jointly by Car­lisle and Caldwell appointees, the incumbent said. “To somehow imply that (the commission members) are being told what to do is an insult, an insult to them.”

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  • After listening and watching these 3 guys in action over the last decade its very obvious that only one man Mr. Djou can help us. Kirk is useless and looks like a slimy used car salesman, Peter is ok but He already had a chance and also LIED like Kirk and Mofee to get Rail started.

    Kirk doe NOT deserve another term, bye, bye. Go back to your part time job at the bank !

        • Rail needs to be finished as planned to Ala Moana to achieve the needed benefits of a better alternative to improve the commute of west side residents who are suffering in horrendous traffic. Stopping rail at Middle Street and continuing with a cheaper mode of dedicated bus lanes the rest of the way is not realistic. This (non) solution would likely be enacted temporarily to appease transit riders who will be fooled into thinking that this is the compromise to save money and the trip to downtown will be almost as fast as rail. But there would be great public outcry to take away general vehicle lanes and the lanes would eventually be restored as before. Rail to downtown would then be dead as it would be difficult to get construction going again. Rail has to be finished as a permanent elevated configuration all the way to Als Moana as planned while we have the majority support of the public for our better future. Stopping short at Middle Street will not solve any of our critical transportation problems and is foolish. Stopping part way and trying to finish later doesn’t happen. We just find the funds now and finish the job right.

        • “”Rail has to be finished as a permanent elevated configuration all the way to Als Moana as planned while we have the majority support of the public for our better future.””

          Hey ukuleleblu, this seems to be A NEW LIE that you just made?

          Where did the majority come from? The majority that work with you? I don’t think it’s the majority of Oahu citizens.

          Oh, and rail wasn’t planned to Ala Moana. It was planned to UH Manoa until politics hijacked the project.

        • Rail was planned to go to UH and Waikiki.

          I still don’t know where this whole “rail has to go to the luxury tourist mall” silliness came from.

          You didn’t make a peep when rail was stolen from the public but now you’re up in arms because the developers and big land owners might not get everything they want?! What is wrong with you???

          And today would be a good day to finally tell us all where it is that you live on the mainland and what your connection is to this mess of a rail project. It not like no one notices you dodging the question.

        • uku – There you go again with the same post you have used over a dozen times. Still as irrelevant as ever, total shibai.

          What part of “There is no more money” do you willfully fail to understand? Rail is already 300% over budget with no end in sight. Years behind schedule, no firm completion date.

          You also continue to forget rail was planned to end at UH Manoa. That was the plan. Ala Moana was the fallback as rail costs skyrocketed out of control. With even more budget failures rail has fallen back to Middle Street.

          Just find the funds you say. Clearly like Kirky Boy you haven’t got a clue about finances. We are talking about a billion dollars or more to go to Ala Moana. Property tax increases are already planned for rail’s O&M costs. No more tax increases for going to Ala Moana. Only an utter fool would think going to Ala Moana is going to happen.

          Face it. Rail is not on time, not on budget. Will end at Middle Street where buses will be waiting to whisk passengers to their place of work.

      • I’m sure Djou truly believes high rises for the homeless will work. Unfortunately he fails to understand how this idea has been a disaster in major cities. Crime ridden high rises under the control of gangs have been a constant problem. Many cities tore them down for lower level units with a more home like atmosphere. Yes they take more land but they work better.

        http://www.citymetric.com/skylines/20-year-battle-demolish-chicago-s-notorious-cabrini-green-housing-project-1575

        Consider cluster townhouses as what we should be looking at. Residents must agree to get jobs, pay some of the cost. Units to be inspected regularly for damage, repairs made. Resident damages unit, they pay or are evicted. Tax payers will not subsidize willful damage.

        • I like tent cities in the central Oahu fallow pineapple fields as an option. Less expensive highrises would be for the working people because at a minimum the cost on a stripped down 60-story high-rise will still be about $300,000 for a 400 sq ft efficiency. Give em each a small ag plot to grow their own food and let them barter among themselves. Shuttle service vocational training and rehab.

        • I was trying to reply to pridon !! His idea makes sense. pridon for Mayor of Honolulu !!!

        • Djou should try living in our version of low-income tenement housing – Kuhio Park Terrace.

          Head in the clouds? LOL 😉

    • First of all, I’d like to commend Mileka for doing an outstanding job conducting the debate! I first thought Djou might do a good job on getting the rail on track but after he started sounding like a broken record with no specific viable plan, answering around and through questions, I don’t thing he is the man for the job. None of the candidates impressed me.

      • Mileka is gifted – very bright and impressively articulate. She communicates with unusual grace and strength. She could easily have a career in politics of she wanted. I love to hear her whenever she speaks.

      • At least Djou was STRESSING to keep the project with in our means. By the way HART showed the Rail cars recently. I was thinking with the project five to eight years behind, why get them now. It’s like buying a brand new car for an eleven year old that will be driving in five years. NUTS !
        Kirk got to go ! I’m voting for Djou !

        • We KNOW that’s what he keeps STRESSING. He said it over and over again. But when called to the carpet on WHAT he would do and WHAT his specific plan was, he really didn’t answer the question.

        • fumio50 He’s not the Mayor yet ! Kirk had about ten years to figure this out, He was with Goofy Muffy and he will get his due just like Muffy, DEFEATED BIG TIME ! By the way if you ever hired a contractor to build a house,and ask them for a quote and they told you when they finish building the house they would tell you the price ! If you are OK with that then you are BAKATADI !

        • gsc, it’s a Mayoral debate. Djou sounded silly when asked by Mileka “What will you do?” And Djou kept on saying, We need new leadership in the Mayor’s Office. We need new leadership on the HART Board, we need to put a cap on the costs, etc, etc. etc…..” Ya, we get it! But he offered NO solutions when asked specifically by Mileka Lincoln. He’s not the Mayor yet? So when he is, THEN we’ll figure out what the plan is?

          Your “contractor building a house” analogy is a little bit off. Imagine a house that’s already partially built. If you ask a NEW CONTRACTOR how much it will cost to complete the house and all he keeps saying is, “You need to hire me as your new contractor. You cannot keep building this house the way you’re building it, it’ll cost too much!” wouldn’t you be a little suspicious?

          That’s what Djou is doing! He’s saying, “I’m committed to rail. But we need to stop the indiscriminate spending or it will bankrupt the City. We need new leadership!” OKAY, I GET IT! But what will Djou DO if I vote for him? What is HIS plan? He hasn’t said! If I have to wait until he’s voted in as Mayor to find out, THAT’S BAKATARE!!

        • Djou is just smarter than Kirk. He will get all the info then make a smart decision. This whole B$ about your plan, etc is just a smoke screen. We need NEW LEADERSHIP and if you people are too S T U P I D to see that then good luck !

        • Djou and Carlisle are republicans. Period. They are against growth. When asked about solutions, they have none. They always point to an incumbents fault. Remember, Djou left the lowly city council because he could slid in to a Washington job. Only to lose in the next elections.

        • So you think because someone is a Republican they are bad ? Wow you need some HELP and people wonder why Hawaii is so messed up and ran like a 3rd world country !

          Kirk is the WORST mayor this state has ever had and MoFee is 2nd.

    • Mileka did a good job! Djou failed to provide a realistic plan for mass transit (his main purpose for running for mayor). His ideas for running buses on the guide way will only create more congestion when they go down to street level and will add to the cost (more buses to purchase and to run and operate). Maintenance and operation of buses and hiring of more bus drivers will cost more than driver-less rail cars. This will result in an increase in property taxes. Djou will not raise taxes so the only solution he has is to buy every man, women, and child a pair of slippas so that they can walk from home to wherever they need to go (Hawaiian mass transit).

        • This means Djou will do nothing? Then don’t vote for him!
          We don’t need someone who will spend 4 years doing nothing to “stay within our means”.

        • Gary_S, Calm Down, Did you take your Meds this morning ? I don’t think so because you are acting Papule ! Kirk is one and Done !

      • Kirk failed to provide a realistic plan for rail. Instead he told us on time and on budget. Now it’s 5 years behind and billions over budget.

        Bonzo the chimp could have been mayor and not done much worse.

  • The homeless have been a problem since the Great Mahele.

    The present day homeless, pitch their tents in plain sight.

    Hawaii depends on tourists and our tourists are not blind. Our tourists are also victims of the homeless. Whether it is from panhandling or mental illness offensive touching.

    Our infrastructure has been neglected for many years. Our elected politicians go into office financially struggling and come out of office financially secure for life.

    The good old boys network went coed and changed generations.

    To all of the senior citizens who have watched the last 50 years, many things have gotten worse.

    H-1, H-2, H-3, should not lead to H-4.

    Building vertical concrete jungles, does not provide more space. The multiplying cars, can’t go vertical.

        • No other Dept had to justify every moment of the day every six minutes. You think they do that at dept of facilities management?

        • The budget cuts were across the board for every department. Only Totto went running to the media to complain.

        • The recent cut of $6,000 was for ethics training for city employees. Training was mandated by the council back in 2012. It represents less than $1/employee and should not have been cut.

        • We don’t know what the dispute is, but 6 min is a 10 th of an hour. So if you were to charge your time to a contract or grant it might be something like contracts A 5.3 hr contract B 2.7 hr. for a total of 8 hr.

          Anything over 8 hr would be changed at an over-time rate. Staff as when I was with a private aerospace company is often charged to the customer like this. Administrators are generally not.

          He might have made the unwise argument that some city administrators should be charging their time like this if they expect to receive over-time pay. So he probably got the ire of his boss because of oodles of complaints from other administrators on this policy that went to her.

          He has learned first-hand the problem with this ethics decision of his? I think not. He wont even discuss it in public.

          HR people know a lot about this kind of thing. I remember when our Hr branch wanted to create an onerous policy for sick leave over 6 days for the whole company. They canceled the new policy when it turned out that our VP of engineering had the most sick leave on the books. It’s stupid policy. We couldn’t accumulate sick leave. It’s better that people stay home when they are sick.

  • None of the three has a clue what to do with the homeless. All I see is more money spend on the homeless instead of using the money for city functions. The homeless knows it and is playing dumb to get free medical and services.

    • Baloney, the program is growing. The article says that…

      “In addition, with Housing First, Caldwell said, “you house someone first with their addictions, with their mental illness, and you help them get better, and we’re doing that in the City and County of Honolulu.” He said that last year a contract with the Institute for Human Services helped house 175 individuals, while an upcoming contract with U.S. Vets will house between 175 and 200 more.”

      This year we will have housed 175 + 175 + 200, or 550 people in the most succesfull program alone.

        • And rail is paid for 🙂 and the financial plan is strong :). And that building behind me did not just blow up.

          Thanks Bagdad Bob!!

        • People dying in the streets of Honolulu is bad for the tourism business. Caldwell and Housing First knows this.

          You’re worried about cost? Pound foolish.

        • wiliki says: “You’re worried about cost? Pound foolish.”

          Yeah I’m worried about cost! With Mayor Caldwell “looking” for money for rail, where is money for Oahu’s real problems like homelessness and infrastructure maintenance going to come from.

          Now, try to answer honestly instead of writing the first lie that pops into your head.

  • I really felt sorry for Mileka. She tried really hard to get straight answers from these guys and mostly she couldn’t. Djou was particularly pathetic as she asked him 3 or 4 times what he would do about rail and he kept spouting ( and then repeat spouting ) platitudes. The other two were only marginally better.

      • If Djou puts the bus in the rail he just lost my vote. I think it was Koboyashi’s idea when they were talking about rail & I thought back then & now that is the most stupid & I do mean stupid idea I ever heard of.

    • Djou has no plan. His mass transit is more bus. His at grade transit is more buses. His “I will Get Mass Transit To Waikiki and UH and Beyond”!!!! with more traffic clogging buses. He just does not want to say BUSES.

  • Caldwell and Carlisle plans for finishing the rail to ala moana assume additional funds will be forthcoming. They don’t have a plan if the billions more needed don’t materialize. Djou, on the other hand, has stated that the specific plan depends on what funding becomes available so he cannot provide one specific plan right now. He is open to explore all possibilities to reach ala moana with available funds. The other two guys are too proud and stubborn to accept that some other means of travel may be needed to get to ala moana. I am a democrat but I will be voting for Djou.

  • They can tussle as much as they want – it is no use. The law has to come down on them – make it a crime to live in the streets or your car.Then the homeless have to be rounded up and put in camps.

    • Criminalize homelessness? Our prisons are already overflowing with real criminals, 1300 Hawaii inmates currently reside in a private prison in AZ because it’s cheaper than building a new prison and hiring more unionized guards.
      Half of the homeless actually belong in a mental ward but that would likely cost even more than providing a place for them to go. There are no easy solutions to the problem.

  • mileka really tried to pin down djou about his specific plans to save rail but he was elusive, so she finally said, you don’t have a specific plan. indeed he does not, and likely will end up adopting the plan that panos devised for cayetano, building 4 underpasses in downtown Honolulu to alleviate the traffic on h1. as always,djou is all talk, no real action. he is trying to save a penny today but increase the cost later to billions of dollars later on. this kind of thinking is economic suicide. must commend ch 7 and milika for a very good debate, the question were pertinent and focused on the main issues. can’t say the same for the kitv/cb debate the other night. it was a farce, poor questions and poor moderators.

    • That’s hilarious Aiea7, no need to wait till later, it’s already at the “Billions” over budget point. What started as 3.7 billion is now looking like at least 10 billion.
      We all know Caldwell’s plan – make the GE tax increase permanent. That fixes all his O&M and construction cost problems. The democrats have planned all along to do this from day one. That’s why there’s no plan to pay for O&M, it’ll be used as a reason to make the tax increase permanent along with a threat to increase property taxes by 30% if it doesn’t pass. They’ve planned for this from the start.

  • Mileka should have at least had the decency to wear her Caldwell 2016 t-shirt to the debate. Pathetic, blatantly rigged/biased, in over her head and she just threw away whatever credibility she might’ve had. Send her back to covering the Merrie Monarch and over-pronouncing Hawaiian words on the weather forecast.

    Hawaii News Now is now, officially, no better than another “news” rag that endorses political candidates (who then lose in landslides).

    When a debate is obviously slanted and favoring one person, and that one person already has a well-deserved reputation for being a slimy, lying, cheating piece of unko, it generally doesn’t help that person with the electorate. Oh wait…Civil Beat just posted that Djou’s got a NINE POINT LEAD over Krook.

    Sorry, Mileka/HNN Management. Big…time…FAIL.

  • djou mentioned he is backed by former democrat governor cayetano but remember cayetano is the reason the rail is so far behind schedule. he was the one who stopped the construction in the beginning because he wanted to stop the rail. if it wasn’t for him I think the rail construction would be closer to being on schedule and closer to being on budget.

    • And just think of where we’d be if Cayetano had WON the election in 2012? Billions richer? A dozen or so concrete pillars in the middle of nowhere, easily knocked down and carted off somewhere? No horrific monstrosity stretching a dozen miles, wreaking havoc on traffic through Waipahu and Pearl City, and soon to come into town yet there’s no money and no plan to finish it?

      How many of those voters who threw away their votes on Caldwell would do it again if the election were held now? Oh wait…NOT TOO MANY, according to every single poll that’s been taken this year.

      Ben tried to save us from this. Panos tried to save us from this. And now that it’s here and about to wreck our economy and skyline due to Caldwell’s incompetence and mismanagement, Djou is trying to save us from this.

      I’m not voting for a political party, or a stump speech, or a voting record or a promised favor. I’m voting for THE TRUTH, and only one guy is giving it to us right now. Vote Djou on August 13th and let’s get our rears in gear because there is a lot of work to be done if we’re going to save Honolulu.

    • “”but remember cayetano is the reason the rail is so far behind schedule.””

      The incompetence of HART and the mayor has more to do with the rail being behind schedule.

      In fact, I dare you to prove that Cayetano was the reason why rail is behind schedule.

      And while you’re at it, how about explaining why rail is also billions over budget?

    • Willieboy says: “remember cayetano is the reason the rail is so far behind schedule. he was the one who stopped the construction in the beginning because he wanted to stop the rail.”

      Please stop lying. Is the new PRP strategy?

      how many times are you going to tell this lie?

      The then Mayor and rail insiders were making a forceful push to get rail started and beyond the point of no return. They tried a shady legal end run around the requirement for a archeological EIS to be completed before starting work. The City was sued by The Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation on behalf of cultural practitioner Paulette Kaleikini. She has and had no relation with Ben Cayetano or Charles Djou.

      The Hawaii Supreme Court ruled UNANIMOUSLY that the city had erred and ordered them to stop work until a archeological EIS was completed. They did, it was, and Paulette Kaleikini was satisfied. Pretending it was the work of Ben Cayetano or Charles Djou is simply dishonest.

      Remember if you can’t defend the rail project without resorting to lies then you can’t defend the rail project.

      • “The City was sued by The Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation on behalf of cultural practitioner Paulette Kaleikini. She has and had no relation with Ben Cayetano or Charles Djou.”

        So Ben Cayetano had NOTHING to do with stopping the rail project?

        In the Star Advertiser on December 12, 2011: “Former Gov. Ben Cayetano and others who have joined in a lawsuit against the city’s rail transit project will not be dismissed from the case, and will be able continue their court challenge, a federal judge has ruled.” This lawsuit was Honolulutraffic.com vs. FTA.

        Ben Cayetano was trying to stall the rail project any way he could, and if he WON the Mayoral race, he could pull the plug on the project all together. This is well documented.

        As far as Charles Djou, he keeps talking in circles about how “We need new leadership, We need a new HART board, we need to cap the amount it’s going to cost, blah, blah, blah…..” But when called to the carpet on WHAT his plan is and WHAT he’s going to do, he really doesn’t give an answer!

        • fumio50 says: “In the Star Advertiser on December 12, 2011: “Former Gov. Ben Cayetano and others who have joined in a lawsuit against the city’s rail transit project will not be dismissed from the case, and will be able continue their court challenge, a federal judge has ruled.” This lawsuit was Honolulutraffic.com vs. FTA. Ben Cayetano was trying to stall the rail project any way he could”

          So this IS the new PRP talking point!

          You are lying. Ben Cayetano never asked for nor did he receive a work stoppage order OR a temporary restraining order on the rail project.

          There have been enough lies from you folks, we don’t need any more.

    • Cayetano was governor during the initial phase of Second City Kapolei. As governor and knowing the potential growth of the West side, the State was a major player in Kapolei. Now why did this supposed SMART MAN not have enough knowledge to know traffic would explode and the needs for alternative travel options would be needed? In a sense, he started it. What did he do for Honolulu traffic?

      • So the NO parrot is saying that PRP is behind all 64% yes people? Lol. We are just citizens of Honolulu and will not vote for a republican mayor!!! Would you vote for a Republican President?

        • Yes I would and you should OPEN YOUR EYES and EARS.

          Millions of trump supporters feel this way about Donald J. Trump…..”We don’t care if the guy swears… or how many times he’s been married…or who he voted for, or what his income tax return shows. We want the problems fixed. Yes he’s an egomaniac, but we don’t care. We know he’s not a racist, or bad to women, or all the other things the liberal media is trying to label him with. We know he’s raised a good family, and that says a lot about him.

          The country is a mess because politicians suck, the Republican Party is two faced & gutless, and illegals are everywhere and Muslims are openly trying to hurt this country and make the civilized world adjust to them. We want it all fixed!

          We don’t care that Trump is crude, we don’t care that he has changed positions, we don’t care that he fights with Megan Kelly, Rosie O’Donnell, and so many of the elected establishment. We don’t care that Rubio, Cruz, Ryan, the Bush’s, and so many other top old and new Republicans refuse to endorse him for their own selfish reasons, and we know what they are. We don’t care that he doesn’t know the name of some Muslim terrorists, we don’t care that he tried some businesses that didn’t work out.

          This country is weak, bankrupt, our enemies are making fun of us, we are being invaded by illegals, we are becoming a nation of victims, where every Tom, Ricardo and Hasid is a special group with special rights to a point where we don’t even recognize the country we were born and raised in, AND WE JUST WANT IT FIXED. And TRUMP is the only guy who seems to understand what the people want.

          We’re sick of politicians, sick of the Democratic and Republican Party. We’re angry about the Iran deal, the budget, treatment of Israel, military weakness, lobbyists, special interests, overpaid politicians with their self serving bills and back room deals, trade deals, loss of jobs, manipulated economic numbers, businesses fleeing, and even the phoney pay for play Clinton Foundation.

          Americans are no longer going to be fooled, and the movement is out to change the direction we’re taking. Trump may not be a saint, but he doesn’t have lobbyist money holding him, he doesn’t have political correctness restraining him, and all you know is that he has been very successful, a good negotiator, he has built a lot of things, he’s flexible, and he’s also not a politician. And he says he’ll fix it. And we believe him because he is too much of an egotist to be proven wrong or looked at and called a liar.

          Public service has become elected greed. This may be our only chance to have a non-politician, despite his flaws, try and correct the mess, at least for 4 years. We must take the shot, because the consequences of putting Hillary Clinton in office are frightening. There is a tidal wave happening, and its going to overcome much of what’s happened to this country.

      • NanakuliBoss says: Now why did this supposed SMART MAN not have enough knowledge to know traffic would explode and the needs for alternative travel options would be needed.

        Maybe because Kapolei was supposed to be where people can live and work in the same area. Until the city kept approving housing developments without requiring the developer to also construct buildings to use for commercial enterprise.

  • After watching the enitre conversation, I am convinced that Djou is a snake in sheep’s clothing. Something about him has red flags flying and waving feverishly. I just don’t trust him. Like it or not, the rail has to get done. And not by putting stupid busses on its tracks. I like Caldwell for saying he is looking at funding from various sources. I lived in NYC until recently. Currently, the 2nd Ave. Subway line is being constructed. In order for that city to have it be built, it had to lease its master lease to developers along the line’s path, so that they would develope their portion with no cost to the citizens. The developers would commit to the line and make money by leasing out portions of the line to anyone who wanted to have a business there. Afte rso many years, the master lease goes back to the city and the developers would make their money back and profit. This could be done here. For the record, that NYC project was in the making for over 2o years. And if you talk about over budget and what not, Honolulu’s project is peanuts compared. Currently the 2nd ave. line will be completed by 2018 or so. And I lived in the upper east side on 72nd and 1st. and I can tell you, that many businesses went bankrupt because of the construction. Tunnel explosions, frustrated drivers, frustrated citizens. If there is a concerted effort, Honolulu will find a way to ge tthis rail done. I wasn’t a big proponent of the rail, because of the permanent defacing of the coastline, but I want it done now.

    • Comparing NYC to Honolulu is Insane. Yes the subway is great for NYC but a single rail line in an island in the pacific with less than 1 million residents is Stupid.

    • yes, he is a snake and stooge for the anti’s (cayetano, slater, et al). cayetano was a stooge too but he failed. now cayetano wants to have another stooge who will fail again. they have no decency, all they want to is to sabotage rail, drive up the cost tremendously and have the residents pay for it. their time will come for being so malicious and vindictive – remember, what goes around, comes around. you guys better look behind your backs.

  • Mileka Lincoln you did and outstanding job last night! Thank you for driving your questions to those candidates for the answers that we the public wanted to hear. I now have a better understanding as to who has a plan and why Caldwell is doing what he has been doing.

    I choose to support Caldwell! Hi Rail explanation and forward plans are viable.

    I don’t care to see the Rail project designed to end up looking like “bare bones” which Carlisle has suggested.

    And Djou had no plans at all, that’s not good to only complaining … we have many of those here on this blog site.

    Each Rail station can be a huge commerce opportunity for many, creating new jobs and destination locations to encourage and tourist to come into our communities to witness and participate in cultural foods, shows, entertainment and history about our great State of Hawaii! Lets not miss this great opportunity!

    Every community that has invested in transportation of people and goods had proven to be very successful in their economic and social prosperity and wealth.

      • Rail is being built for the very long range future. We need to stop being short sighted as the future benefits will far outweigh the present costs. We need to find the funds to finish this amazing project and become a world class city.

        • ukulelblue says: “We need to find the funds to finish this amazing project and become a world class city.”

          1) What’s this “we” business? You’ve never said where it is that you live on the mainland but it’s clear you don’t live here.

          2) A train from a developer’s new sprawl to the fancy luxury mall isn’t going to make or not make Honolulu a “world class city.”

          3) Please stop saying “finding funds.” We all know that means higher taxes for struggling local families so just have the guts to say it! You’re not fooling anyone with double speak and euphemisms.

          4) Make to day the day you finally come clean and tell everyone where on the mainland that you live and what your connection is to this mess of a rail project.

        • so true. Rail critic Djou is being lb foolish. Time will tell as to whether waiting til june 2016 as Caldwell has planned is wise or not,

  • I’m not politically “married” to any of the three major candidates but I have gotten the impression, watching these discussions, that they are not philosophically that far apart. In addition, they seem to sort of appreciate each other. (It was especially interesting the other night to hear Djou say that if he had to vote for one of the other candidates, he very graciously said that he would vote for Carlisle.)

    I guess it’s to be expected in a comparatively small town like Honolulu with a fairly limited pool of candidates for office that there would be a lot of cross-pollination of ideas.

  • It was all too evident that Mileka Lincoln took her cues from the SA editorial staff and Hawaii News Now’s Bianchiardi, who both went to ad-hog cladwell.

    She tore into Djou with vicious questioning and literally fawned’drooled over cladwell’s responses, saying ‘yes, yes’, ‘oh, yes’ at literally every one of his answers.

    Should have gotten a more experienced, as opposed to eye-candy moderator, who could have acted more impartial.

    The “debate” only showed the depth and effect of deep pockets on our supposed “impartial” media.

    Shame on Mileka for selling out true journalism.

  • One of the more interesting revelations to come out of this rather boring exchange was the fact that Kirk Caldwell receives $200K per year to serve on the board of Territorial Savings Bank. He was asked if this represented any conflict of interest, and assured all that his participation on the board had no influence on his ability to perform as Mayor of Honolulu, because he only attended one two hour meeting each month. Do the math. $200K per year for 24 total hours? Nice work, if you can get it. And while I’m on a roll, did anyone see the new elevated bus the Chinese have introduced? Rides on two rails and cars drive right under it. Take a look, Charlie D!

  • on a side note – our current sitting POTUS NEGOTIATED AND AGREED TO PAY $400M IN CASH AS RANSOM FOR HELD CAPTIVE PRISONERS. among other things which the POTUS has done to irk me, i ask – since when do we cave in to demands made by any foreign sovereignty??? our lame duck, p-y-s-$-@-n-t POTUS paid cash in un-marked boxes and un-named airlines to a foreign country. the height of unreason in the highest office is boundless. this is my exercisable right to speak as a voter to express my very deep dissatisfaction.. and dissappointment!

  • Some comments re the debate. How could Djou be expected to have specific plans. He has to study te options/costs/feasibility and discuss with the Feds.

    Caldwell told me that the rail would be the same price as the bus. That is insane. Seniors free and $2.50 for a 20 mile ride. That may cover the daily operations but no way it will cover ongoing maintenance. The planned subsidy is 2/3 of operating costs. So city share would be $5.00 per trip. Assuming the train carries 20,000 per day, that implies $36,500,000 annual subsidy. Ticket prices on DC commuter trains are about $15-20 for 2o mile trip into DC.

    How can we reduce cost. Reduce rail station in half. Only adds about 1/2 mile for the person getting to the station. If they are coming by bus that is irrelevant. 1 mile intervals was stupid from the get go. Might make sense in high-density areas but not Oahu. Cutting 10 stations saves about a $billion.

    Rail guideway and stations could be covered with solar panels. Would reduce operating costs over time or the area could be leased out to HE or an independent power producer. Probably about 75 acres of space. Enough to power about 2000 residences. The existing guideway could be producing power for the 5 years until rail starts.

    These are the type of out of the box thinking that could make it work rather than the damn the torpedoes full speed ahead approach which will doom Honolulu tax payers.

  • So, let’s say rail is completed for between 8 to 10 billion dollars. Our candidates should explain what follows. For example, is there more investment in infrastructure to encourage housing developments, and if so, what kind of developments (priority to affordable and low income housing, etc.) and specifically, where will these developments be located. Or do they now need to repair the roads along rail, and how will it be paid for?

    Will this road repair priority cause other areas of the island to be neglected, at least for a time, and if so, where?

    What, how much costs, for what purposes, will the public have to pay for after rail is finally completed? What are the specific plans? Do they even have specific plans as to what the priorities will be and how it will be paid for?

  • Carlisle is insignificant as a politician. I think however that he is secretly helping Caldwell to take votes away from Djou. If Caldwell gets elected you can expect that Carlisle will get a cushy job with the city.

  • Sorry Charles, but Kakaako is already becoming like the skyline of Chicago or Manhattan without even more height. More height is just a giveaway to developers. The State and City need to worry about infrastructure both public and private like grocery stores, libraries, medical facilities, parks, etc. etc. Infrastructure in and around Kakaako will be overloeaded.

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