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The Honolulu Advertiser

Updated at 3:56 p.m., Monday, October 22, 2007

Raucous crowd of 400 at Superferry meeting on Maui

By Christie Wilson
Advertiser Neighbor Island Editor

WAILUKU, Maui — The head of the Maui County Council today told a panel of state senators that proposed legislation allowing the Hawaii Superferry to operate while an environmental review is done would spark "a social and political revolution" unlike any seen since the 1950s movement that brought Democrats to power in Hawai'i.

Speaking at an informational briefing at the Baldwin High School auditorium, Council Chairman Riki Hokama said "state government is at risk of being seen as out of touch with the recent growth on the Neighbor Islands."

He said the proposed legislation is a "disingenuous" attempt to circumvent court rulings requiring an environmental review of state-funded harbor improvements to accommodate the new interisland ferry.

A raucous crowd of at least 400 people were present when the informational meeting began shortly after 3 p.m., with the audience expected to grow as the afternoon wears on.