Under the Sun: Gov. can dispose of legislators' mess

Governor can dispose of legislators' mess In 1978, delegates at a constitutional convention astutely decided to protect Hawaii's important agricultural lands and minimize willy-nilly urban, suburban and ... Full Story
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Apache Junction, AZ

#1 May 14, 2008
Waiting for Alice to say how destroying AG land is "the best use for our economy" and our Governor doesn't know what she is doing.

There are your hero legislators at work Alice ! arn't you proud !
TokudaMustGo

Ewa Beach, HI

#2 May 14, 2008
Let's be clear: the boneheaded legislator in particular is sell-out Jill Tokuda. The worst record of any freshman senator in her first two years!
Pat

Kaneohe, HI

#3 May 14, 2008
Good-bye to Jill. Who is willing to step up to run in her place?
Newtowner

Honolulu, HI

#4 May 14, 2008
The AG bill was bad policy and should be vetoed. The state should not be giving the big land owners a free ride in development at the expense of the people and the counties.
VETO it!
Formerly undecided

Hilo, HI

#5 May 14, 2008
I could not agree more. One thought/question: Who were the legislators behind the scenes pushing for this giant giveaway for the large land owners? The concept of "the House" is a vague as "the unions" or "the Democratz." I know we don't "name names" in Hawai`i and this is one of the reasons these sort of bad things continue to happen here. No one is ever held responsible for their actions, in this case their votes.
Champion of the Obvious

Ewa Beach, HI

#6 May 14, 2008
If the governor vetoes the bill, ag lands get no protection at all. Reasonable observers know that in order to get landowner cooperation, there has to be a trade. So the state offers a reasonable chance for landowners to change the use of some of their land--subject to approval--in order to preserve a lot more. Whatʻs the problem?

Cynthia Oi is taking the short-sighted, all-or-nothing Sierra Club position that makes for provocative commentary, but offers no effective solution to the real problem of preserving agriculture in our state.
manini

Honolulu, HI

#7 May 14, 2008
Champion of the Obvious wrote:
If the governor vetoes the bill, ag lands get no protection at all. Reasonable observers know that in order to get landowner cooperation, there has to be a trade. So the state offers a reasonable chance for landowners to change the use of some of their land--subject to approval--in order to preserve a lot more.
Whatʻs the problem?
Cynthia Oi is taking the short-sighted, all-or-nothing Sierra Club position that makes for provocative commentary, but offers no effective solution to the real problem of preserving agriculture in our state.
The problem is that landowners who want to develop don't have to go through any zoning process. The legislature has given them a free ride through the zoning process and a huge tax break on the remainder of their property.
If a owner of Ag land wants to develop some of it, make him go through the zoning process so the community can weigh in.
And the legislature giving themselves the power over future land use decisions really stinks. Can you imagine the favoritism and kick backs that will sprout out of that.
And that's just a few things that are wrong with this bill.
Veto the bill and let the public then tell their representatives whether or not to over ride the veto.
Informed Farmer

Honolulu, HI

#8 May 14, 2008
Everyone seems to focus on the 85/15 provision and overlooks the fact that incentives and protections needed to be adopted to trigger the designation of IAL. The 85/15 provision is terrible, but without this measure (one that was backed by HDOA)the state has no idea how much IAL actually exists.

A and B lands are great for growing produce, but they're also great for growing houses.
Raymond

Koloa, HI

#9 May 14, 2008
Hmm, I wonder what Champion of the Obvious does for a living?

Mahalo, Cynthia, for helping shine light on this horrible bill.

This bill also allows new "employee housing" on important ag land. After the "farmers" can't make a go of their half-hearted farming, what will happen to the houses? It is unlikely they would be knocked down to restore the important farm land, and it is very likely the former "farmers" will offer a "solution" to the housing shortage.

The big land owners win big and the state loses ag land if the Governor allows this law to pass.
Support Ag Bill

Ewa Beach, HI

#10 May 14, 2008
Hawaii's agricultural industry continues to be a fragile industry. I think we should give this bill a chance to stimulate and encourage farm businesses and at the same time keep our agricultural lands productive. Agriculture is a long term investment and this Ag Bill tries to accomplish that.
We commend Senator Tokuda and the House and Senate Leadership for their vision and support of Hawaii's local farmers.
Governor should support and sign this agricultural bill.
Moke

Honolulu, HI

#11 May 14, 2008
I still say votes all of the the guys and gals OUT election or you and I will pay for another couple years!
William

Kapaa, HI

#12 May 14, 2008
Thank you Cynthia and may our Governor do the right thing on this one.
question

Kaneohe, HI

#13 May 14, 2008
"champion of the obvious" what do you mean when you say that "resonable observers know that in order to get landowner cooperation, there has to be a trade ..."

the law is the law, and land owners have to cooperate with the law, so what do you mean by cooperate? i ask you 'what's the problem?'

I think you maybe meant to say 'reasonable observers know that in order to get THE REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY, WHO GIVE LOTS OF CAMPAIGN DONATIONS to cooperate, there has to be a trade'

smells funny to me
agapito

Bellevue, WA

#14 May 14, 2008
Who voted for and against this bill?
get a clue

Wailuku, HI

#15 May 14, 2008
You so called "environmentalists" are smoking too much dope. Farmers are would be landowners and landowners are would be farmers. As landowners, you have entitled rights to your property that are defendable in any court of law. If the legislators created special restrictions to property rights of the farmer/landowner without a course of just compensation, that is considered a taking. Property rights are protected by the U.S. constitution.
GetReal

Honolulu, HI

#16 May 15, 2008
Since the voters ratified the 1978 constitutional amendment to identify and protect important agricultural lands, efforts of the legislature to do so have been stopped by landowners, developers, etc. They prefer the status quo of no identification, no protection, no action. Against significant resistance, including a public relations campaign to lure media coverage and editorial voices to distract attention to the merits of the issue by giving outright protection to 85% of the identified lands, the legislature has taken a major step forward. Your editorial gives the governor a way to protect her largest contributors to veto this bill and protect the status quo. Are you being pressured by those providing 85% of your ad revenue?
Puuloa

Honolulu, HI

#17 May 15, 2008
Wow. I just want to make sure that Cynthia Oi isn't a credible reporter, right? Because her editorial is so factually incorrect, I'm shocked the Star Bulletin even printed it. Did you even read the bill? Or is your editorial really a front for the Sierra Club extremists? As John Stossel says, "Gimme a break!" Here's what I know is a fact: no one is the Sierra Club has ever farmed. Because if you did, you would know that you don't grow crops on ocean front land. Duh. Ring - Ring! Hello? Salinity? Wind? Rocky shoreline? What IALs are you talking about?!
Kudos to Tokuda

Honolulu, HI

#18 May 15, 2008
Jill Tokuda has been an incredible bright light at the state legislature. She actually is concerned with balancing the needs of the entire state - not just one special interest group like the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club is comprised of some of the wealthiest people in the world. They've moved to Hawaii from the mainland, bought up the entire island of Kauai and now they advocate "saving" the land so that they can have it all to themselves. They don't want development because they already own their piece of paradise while the rest of us struggle to even put a roof over our head. I love that Sen. Tokuda really cares about the working people - not the wealthy elite Sierra Club members - who don't work for living and can afford to lobby on these ridiculous issues. She has great perspective and "normal" kama'aina know that.
Out with Oi

Honolulu, HI

#19 May 15, 2008
To the so-called reporter that wrote this article and failed to do her homework - or the math. It's 15% of IAL's - not 15% of all land holdings, you idiot. And the IALs have to be designated. Right now - there is no incentive to "designate" the IALs. That's what we WANT them to do. Where do you get the 15% of 10,000 acres? What an incredibly ill-informed reporter. And where do you get off with name calling? The only bone-head I see is you - thinking that you even know what you're talking about. Your editors really failed miserably on this one. Your editorial should never have seen the light of day. Get off your okole and get down to the Capitol if you want to know what's going on. Or better yet -leave the real reporting to Richard Borreca. He's a much more credible reporter than you are. But since you're been there since 1976, no one else must want to hire you.
Publius808

Lihue, HI

#20 May 16, 2008
There is no shortage of Ag lands in Hawaii.

About 95% of the state is equally in Ag or Conservation with the rest left for residential, commercial, and industrial development. While Ag land is plentiful (most of which is left fallow) there is a shortage of housing and commercial space in Hawaii—rents are very high.

With Ag, the problem is not the availability of land; it’s the shortage of farmers. For various reasons people chose not to farm, e.g., traditional Ag is not profitable in Hawaii, farmers can’t pay the low wages that pickers and harvesters are paid, startup costs for diversified crops are high, the barriers to entry in the market are set high by Hawaii’s land use Gordian Knot, small businesses which include most diversified farmers are assailed by government fees, regulations, and taxes, etc.

Maybe you should pick up a pick and hoe and get to work Ms. Oi. Hawaii needs more farmers. While you’re out there sweating in the hot sun, could you point me to an affordable house and an affordable space for me start my small business?

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