Cost of Living
The city must reduce the cost burden for local families, including but not limited to ensuring that we keep taxes, car registration, and permit fees low, and look for new procedures to save tax dollars.
I will oppose property tax and fee increases. We can improve the city core processes and services through the use of modernized technology and more efficiency-minded ways of doing things.
Increasing numbers of homeless people have migrated into our neighborhoods and our kupuna are also now at increased risk of thefts and assaults. Our keiki are not able to enjoy public parks without the fear of stranger-danger or drug use. We must increase HPD presence in our district until the beat is fully staffed.
I will also work with neighborhood watch groups to access online portals for tips, suggestions, and hot lines.
The homeless crisis throughout the island is best tackled by initiating a consistent, island-wide sit-life ban to give law enforcement the leverage they need to engage with the homeless population, along with the strategic coordination of private and public outreach and support programs. Both go hand in hand.
I would also strongly support two specific initiatives: First, we should allocate city funds toward direct transportation for homeless residents who are willing to accept help and shelter. The city is currently using HPD vehicles and The Bus. Second, we should better utilize community court hearings where those convicted are sentenced to community service rather than face jail time or fines they can't afford.
Finally, rather than have the city bureaucracy take the lead on homelessness, I strongly support shifting tax money to local non-profits which are far more effective and efficient in dealing with homelessness than the city has been.
We need more housing for local residents. I support increasing the supply of affordable housing on Oahu by increasing density in the Honolulu urban core. I also strongly oppose increasing property taxes that will only hurt local families already struggling to make ends meet among Hawaii's high cost of living. I will also champion streamlining the city's complicated regulatory and zoning process for building affordable housing.
I am pro-rail, but I will absolutely not support property tax or fee increases to make up the budget shortfall. HART needs to be forthright on the resources requirements as a first step to understanding the true costs verses basing budgeting off assumptions.
When elected, I will take a three-pronged approach to getting Rail back on track:
- Encourage private financing and public-private-partnerships. Private developers who stand to benefit from rail due to transit oriented development can help alleviate costs to taxpayers. This is a win-win.
- Create an Upfront Costs Initiative. Private contractors and developers would consider fronting the costs of construction and then be reimbursed after the project is completed and provided on time, on schedule, and on budget.
- Subsidize Transportation Costs. If rail can being operations sooner than 2026 from Kapolei to the Stadium, I will recommend that the City collaborate with the private sector such as the hospitality industry to encourage fares for employees, similar to other initiatives found in cities like Washington, D.C.