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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

"Rail and the insanity drum beat continues..." 'Glenn Mickens' (Hawaii state watchdog!)

Glenn Mickens has lived on Kauai  with his wife Ruth for the last 26 years. Born July 26, 1930 in Wilmar, California, USA) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball. He pitched in four games (two of which were starts) for the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers. He also played for five years in Japan, from 1959 until 1963 for the Kintetsu Buffaloes. There, he compiled a record of 45–53 with a 2.54 ERA.  Glenn also  served in the Army for 2 years and coached baseball at UCLA for 25 years. 
Last but not least Glenn would really like to see Kaua'i give the county manager style of Government a chance.
Above photo of Glenn Mickens courtesy of Kauai Garden island news, used with permission...

Rail and the insanity drum beat continues

Mr. Mickens is locally known
as one of Kauai county's
and state of Hawaii's
political watchdogs
and Nitpickers...
Mahalos Glenn!

And the insanity drum beat continues over the state's TAT tax, the amount and its allocation to all the outer islands. 

According to TGI, 5/3 we currently receive $14.9 million in TAT revenue and if SB 1183 is passed we will receive $11.6 million or $3.3 million less, a huge 22% cut!

Year after year our county council has strongly protested that we are not getting our fair share of the TAT tax and I completely agree.
2016-2018-Kauai county council; Left to right
Mason Chock, Arthur Brun, Mel Rapozo
JoAnn Yukimura, Ross Kagawa,
Derek Kawakami, Arryl Kaneshiro
And, we are not even getting the money our police officers are receiving from all the traffic violations that they give, money that we tax payers are entitled to. 

And what is the state's rational for wanting to cut our share of the TAT tax even more----to fund a 20 mile multi billion dollar rail system that has doubled in price since it was first conceived. And its purpose is to alleviate traffic on Oahu which, after you read the following is a myth.

Cliff Slater, a columnist for the Star Bulletin wrote an outstanding article in 2004 titled "Congestion, transit barely tie in" and his words ring just as true today as they did when he wrote his column 13 years ago. Let me quote you a few of his factual based studies and words:
Amid funding woes, rail officials say killing project could cost $3B (Hawaiii News Now)
1) When you look at  the evidence you find that improving public transportation has little or nothing to do with relieving traffic congestion. Portland, the poster city for light rail, had an increase of 20,000 transit commuters during the census period 1990-2000 which everyone has applauded as a spectacular performance. However, it also had an increase of 175,000 in the number of car-driving commuters.
Construction is costing
billions over budget
for the Honolulu rail
which won't solve any
traffic problems.
Since Portland had done little or nothing about increasing road space (having spent the money on light rail) the result was one of the worst increases in traffic congestion in the nation. And yet its public officials still gloat over the ridership increases. 

2) Locally Honolulu's usage of public transit for commuting has been continuously declining despite the huge subsidies provided---over $100 million in the current year. Fewer workers today commute by transit than at any time in the last 25 years. 90% of all Honolulu vehicular commuters use cars and the other 10% use transit.
Thus the traffic congestion is about cars--the 90%. You cannot improve congestion by toying around with transit, which is only 10% of the problem. Given the official estimates of population growth for the next 10 years even if we were able to increase Honolulu's (OR KAUAI'S ) transit commuters by a highly unlikely 30% it would still result in over 20.000 more cars on the road.
Fox News national did a story; "Troubled transit project a taxpayer boondoggle in paradise?"
3) It is necessary to recognize that congestion as appalling as that of the Leeward Corridor rush hour is (OR THE KAPAA CORRIDOR!)
Everyday more cars are sold
with no plans for any new roads
on an island community.
up to the people to
vote for the  right leaders!"

Glenn Mickens
because road building did not keep pace with population growth. 

Mr Slater also points to a successful traffic alleviating solution in Tampa, FL where they have built an elevated reversible tollway (buses and vans go free) from downtown to the suburbs . There are successful operations going on in the world no matter what the problems are. The point is that we do not have to reinvent the wheel but can take a page out of a successful book and use it on Kauai. We only need the leadership and the will to make it happen and that is up to the people to vote for the right leaders. 

Check out Glenn's Wikipedia page;

Editor's note, Dakinetalk guest bloggers do not necessarily represent the opinions of dakinetalk. Guest bloggers are given space to express their beliefs and or opinions. We feel there are many roads and like to give people space to express their thoughts,after-all that's what dakine is...
Aloha, James "Kimo" Rosen---Blogger-n-chief, dakinetalk blog---

Kapa'a Sunrise from Kimo Rosen's Lanai
i-Phone photo by James "Kimo Rosen

Hana Hou, (Encore) 


Comments from Garden Island news said...

This blog also ran this same day as a guest column in the Garden island news! a double whammy for Glenn ! Here are 3 comments from the newspaper; 3 comments:


PauloT posted at 9:34 am on Tue, May 9, 2017.
PauloTPosts: 20
Rail for Oahu is a positive solution to removing "some" vehicles from their roads but asking the outer islands, who have unfunded traffic liabilities of our own, to forfeit even more of the TAT for this purpose is wrong.
A large part of Kauai's traffic is caused by visitors. We have enough traffic, we have enough visitors. We do not have enough of the TAT after the bulk is taken from our county, to even fix our potholes. The Hawaii Tourism Authority needs to stop promoting Hawaii as a visitor destination and put that portion of the TAT back to the counties to handle this wear and tear from the steadily increasing numbers of visitors. We might need to get this on the statewide ballot because otherwise it's not happening.
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Kuaina posted at 6:40 am on Tue, May 9, 2017.
KuainaPosts: 1072
Keep supporting the Democrat Party who has proven over and over again how corrupt and fiscally irresponsible they are. The state needs an ever increasing flow of tax dollars to pay for public worker raises and benefits that increase on a regular basis. Democrats are masters at the money laundering scheme that they have created. Never ending pay raises result in big monetary and in kind political donations from public worker unions. Union support is rewarded with long political careers with fabulous retirement benefits beyond anything available in the public sector. As Forrest Gump's mother said, " Stupid is as stupid does".
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UncleAina posted at 6:18 am on Tue, May 9, 2017.
UncleAinaPosts: 960
No one notices that Hawaii isn't San Francisco. If we all had $180k year tech jobs, maybe we'd ride the bus or even our bike to work. But in Hawaii there's a good chance you work 2 jobs, or that your kids can't ride a bus home so you gotta pick them up..or that there's not a way to use public transportation that gets you home because there's no feeder routes or parking lots. Did you see that on Oahu they're looking at spending 6 billion to finish the rail project OR 3 billion to tear it back down before it's carried one single person. Classic Hawaii Politics!
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Glenn Mickens-by email said...

Glenn Mickens said by email; Thanks again Kimo for all the hard work that you do. We may have our differences but no one can accuse you of not working your rear off to keep the people informed.

Glenn Mickens-by email said...

Aloha Kimo:

Just a note to tell you what a great job you do putting my letters on your blog. What amazes me is how you not only put them on word for word BUT also add pictures and additionally comments about the subject matter. I had no idea that this "boondoggle" was already that far along until I read your comments. But the point is that you have the time to not only put these issues on your blog but you find time to research them and make them even more interesting.

Regarding this mythical rail system. If the funds were coming from a private company or a private individual I would not care how much it is costing or what it is that they want to do. But to want to take even more our TAT money that we are already getting cheated out of is criminal and should never happen. The point is that no private company or individual would attempt to build this white elephant as it is a failure waiting to happen. BUT as long as they have our tax money to back up every and any scheme that comes down the loop they plod farther and farther into the black hole.

Keep up the great work, Kimo and keep the Kool aide out of your reach!!
Your pal,