The mayor's budget proposal cuts the hotel tax rate and increases funding for the Maui County Visitor Association Against a backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, Maui Mayor Michael Victorino released his $870-million county budget proposal last week. It includes a number of measures that Victorino said were responses to the impacts of COVID-19, such as $10 million allocated for … [Read more...] about Mayor’s Budget Boosts Tourism: Is it the Best Way to Recover from COVID-19?
Table courtesy Hawaii Housing Planning Study 2019 “The [Hawai‘i state] legislature pronounced that the problem of the critical shortage [of housing for low- and middle-income earners] was the high cost of housing. The causes of this high cost were said to be the ‘cost and availability of land, the cost of development, the cost and availability of financing, the cost added by … [Read more...] about Is Regulation to Blame? Perspectives on the prevalence of out-of-state homebuyers and lack of attainable housing in Maui County
The public comment period for Mahi Pono/Alexander & Baldwin’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) closed last week, and judging from the dozens of pages of responses I’ve read, this DEIS has more holes in it than bleached coral. Those stalwart folks who actually pored through the 2,700-page tome seemed to find scant substance and lots to question in East Maui … [Read more...] about ‘This DEIS Is Deficient’: Sierra Club, Maui Tomorrow, and others weigh in on A&B/Mahi Pono’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement for a 30-year water lease
It’s easy to make fun of tourists, but it's a lot harder to criticize the tourism industry. Tourists drive at a crawl over the Pali, rubbernecking at whales, while 10 cars tail them. Tourists crowd beaches and trails, then tell you to get out of “their” sunset. Tourists poke you with their selfie sticks as they strike poses for Instagram while crusted in reef-toxic … [Read more...] about ‘An Overworked Brothel’ – Maui County Council discusses visitor impacts to our environment and infrastructure
The Infrastructure and Environmental Management Committee meeting on Monday, Sept. 17, began with a lecture. “I’ve had numerous meetings that we could not deliberate and do the work of this community due to lack of quorum,” Committee Chair Elle Cochran announced after taking roll and marking Councilmembers Don Guzman, Riki Hokama, and Mike White with unexcused absences. “We … [Read more...] about Councilmembers’ Day Off: Majority of voting members absent for Infrastructure and Environmental Management Committee meeting