Andrew Robbins, executive director of the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation, said that “world-class teams of developers and contractors” stand ready to complete the rail for the people of Honolulu (“City is withdrawing from P3 Honolulu rail procurement process, Mayor Kirk Caldwell tells feds,” Star-Advertiser, Top News, Sept. 25). But at what price? Is Robbins aware that we have an economic crisis and are short of money?
The project was in trouble when the city chose Ansaldo to build the rail, a company on the verge of bankruptcy. But the biggest problem was that too many political hands were in the rail’s cookie jar.
Circumstances have changed. Because of the COVID-19 crisis, Honolulu may never have the billions needed to complete the rail. Money is needed elsewhere. Therefore, the city’s most expensive project should be stopped, and the city’s highly paid employee released.
The economic recovery of this state is more important than this rail. The rail expense is an ongoing liability and only hinders this recovery.
Don’t bet that rail will reach Ala Moana
Will Rogers once said, “If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.” Recent negative logistical news about our rail project presents the undeniable handwriting on the wall. It is uncertain if our policymakers will accept the sad facts or continue to fantasize about a miracle solution that will take the project to Ala Moana Center and become operational.
It is time for reasonable leaders to accept the fact that there are two clear rail choices. One is to terminate the project where it can be completed and made functional. Or, keep going until we run out of money and abandon the project until a miracle happens to allow its completion. Our government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the decimation of our economy assures a scarcity of revenues for the foreseeable future.
We need to make the best of a failed pork-barrel project and stop the red ink that has been funded by our tax- paying citizens. They have been punished enough.
Losing ecosystem for cemetery a bad idea
Let’s give over more of our precious ‘aina to unsustainable cemeteries (“Hawaiian Memorial Park gets approval for Kaneohe cemetery expansion,” Star-Advertiser, Sept. 24).
In the particularly depressing case of Hawaiian Memorial Park in Kaneohe, gouge out a complex ecosystem of plants, animals and soil that took at least centuries to achieve and replace it with pesticided grass, concrete, asphalt and random seedlings, all to benefit an offshore corporation. So visionary, such a great example to our keiki.
The will to live takes yet another hit.
President has told 2,000 lies — times 10
While Hal Omori’s statement that “Trump has told 2,000-plus lies in the past 3-1/2 years” is true, it also is true that President Donald Trump has told 20,000-plus lies, making a more compelling case (“Fact-checkers needed for presidential debate,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, Sept. 26).
Hirono right to urge spending of relief funds
Hawaii’s U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono is an amazing woman. She survived late-stage cancer to continue to fight for our state and our nation.
That being said, Gov. David Ige should listen to Hirono’s request to use the remaining unspent $321 million provided by the federal government to assist anyone and everyone affected by the pandemic (“U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono wants Gov. David Ige to spend CARES Act money before it goes away,” Star-Advertiser, Sept. 25).
For small businesses, unemployment relief, schools and students, medical staff and equipment, $321 million can go a long way.
For the remaining funds to be squandered as unspent funds, resulting in a return to the U.S. Treasury, it would not just be a face-palm moment for our state’s governing competence. It would be an appalling failure for the people and the economy of Hawaii.
Hirono lacks aloha spirit with court nominee
The meanness and incivility of Hawaii’s U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono are legendary. Her treatment of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was disgusting, and her charade and theatrics then, on national television, were an embarrassment for Hawaii residents.
Now she refuses to even meet with Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. How unprofessional, and how lacking in the aloha spirit!
Volcano, Hawaii island
Treat other people as we wish to be treated
So many of the problems facing the world today could be solved if everyone just simply treated others the way they themselves would like to be treated.
Mail-in ballot errors may not be able to be fixed
I have worked the polls in Mililani for the past 10 years. I see a couple of issues with the statewide mail-in ballots.
First will be signature verification. The signatures that I have seen in the past were amazing. At least we had photo verification.
The next problem will be spoiled ballots. At least at the polls if a person made a mistake, the machine rejected the ballot and another would be issued. That happened quite often. If the voters make a mistake in the mail-in system, the ballot is rejected and you lose your vote. Be careful with your ballot.
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