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
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 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
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.
"It's up to the people to
vote for the right leaders!"
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.