Four words for editor Anthony Pignataro: “Give me a break.” His comments about Governor Lingle’s energy proposals in Volume 9, Issue 35 (Cunning Lingle, Feb. 23, 2006) were either naively or intentionally incorrect.
Pignataro questioned the Governor’s commitment to developing renewable energy sources because her reelection campaign accepted a $1,000 check (gasp!) from Tesoro. That’s a small donation from a large petroleum company that’s known for making much more generous contributions to other political candidates.
Governor Lingle is beholden to no one, except the people of Hawai’i. And she’s made energy self-sufficiency one of her key initiatives for 2006, along with affordable housing and tax relief.
Let’s give the Governor credit—not unfounded criticism—for leading the effort to reduce our longstanding dependence on imported fossil fuels. If her initiatives win support in the legislature, Hawai’i will benefit for many generations to come.
-Alan Lee, via email
Mahalo nui to Council members Danny Mateo, Jo Anne Johnson and Michelle Anderson for having the willingness to bypass the slick corporate presentation and seek their own answers about Kapalua Mauka from the everyday citizens of West Maui.
Maui Land and Pineapple had a positive role to play in Maui’s past, its future could be the same. ML&P founder, Colin Cameron had the courage and humility to listen to the Hawaiian people and move a hotel to accommodate the numerous burials in Honokahua.
The present leadership of ML&P could show the same courage and humility by listening to the people of West Maui who are tired of being promised “no impacts, only benefits”’ by every developer for the past 20 years. Meanwhile, the reality is that West Maui residents watch their families pushed out by soaring housing prices. They spend hours in traffic to get to work. They have inadequate medical facilities, overcrowded schools and a smelly, overburdened sewage treatment plant.
Some West Maui wells are subject to hazardous agricultural pollutants, courtesy of ML&P (“Toxic Water,” Jan. 26, 2006). Its beaches are walled off by resorts and vacation rentals. Its reefs are stained by muddy run-off from both pineapple fields and housing developments. Is this the best we can offer to the folks who keep Maui’s “economic engine” running?
As one of West Maui’s two major historic landowners and developers, ML&P needs to admit that the promises made 20 years ago have not been kept. And, turning the lands of Kapalua Mauka into a “product” to attract 600 more wealthy investors is not going to fix the problem.
Do luxury resort developments really provide the infrastructure needed for local residents? If so, where are the roads, schools, hospital and other facilities West Maui needs? Can the Council look beyond the same old promises and insist on a more realistic system that serves local residents first?
-Lucienne de Naie, Huelo