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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, April 26, 2010

Fireworks bill


Your editorial on SB 1059 made some very good points. For some, a statewide ban on fireworks would have been the better bill, but the support at the Legislature was not there.

To call SB 1059 "a dud," however, shows limited thinking and is wrong. A possible scenario of this measure is the City and County of Honolulu could ban fireworks except for large public displays and religious/cultural reasons. Suddenly 70 to 80 percent of the legitimate market would be gone.

Large fireworks importers told me if SB 1059 passed, they may leave the Hawai'i market altogether. The cost of importing and storing the fireworks is immense, and the cost could drive them away due to a remaining smaller market. Also, with legal fireworks gone, it may be easier for law enforcement to do their job with illegal activity.

Coupled with HB 1987, possible property forfeiture and business closure for illegal fireworks adds teeth to existing law and will make people think twice before embarking on illegal firework use or sale. Moreover, the task force in SB 1059 would address the smuggling element.

Your editorial knocks home-rule on this matter, but I believe counties are capable of managing fireworks and passing appropriate legislation for their residents.

Sen. Will Espero
Chair, Public Safety and Military Affairs Committee



If the parents who camped out in the governor's office think their proposal of robbing the mandated Hurricane Relief Funds, designated for that purpose only, to end furlough day woes is a good idea, then I think the future governor can expect even more campers when the next hurricane arrives.

Perhaps then we'll just camp in the office for shelter, proposing we raid the education funds to pay for the hurricane damage.

Personally, I think if the teachers would fire their so-called union representatives who rejected the governor's initial proposal of pay cuts, everyone would still be employed (with benefits) and we wouldn't be having this conversation.

Let's not forget all the private industry people who have lost their jobs or taken furloughs already. But we don't hear whining from them.

Barbara Cook



After watching "Fiberglass & Megapixels" at the Hawai'i International Film Festival Spring Showcase, I must acknowledge with the highest regard the Hoffman brothers. Produced, directed, edited and narrated by the local Kuliouou boys, this film is definitive and enlightening.

If you know nothing about surfing, this film is for you. If you thought you knew everything about surfing, this film is for you. The North Shore is surfing's mecca, and the professional cinematographers, photographers and surfers are its pilgrims.

The beach-bound masses can't possibly know the death-defying will of these watermen and waterwomen. "Fiberglass & Megapixels" bridges the gap between ignorance and reverence, with a small dose of the absurd intertwined in the splendor of the lifestyle. If there is one local film you should see this year, this is the one.

Scott Gruzinsky



I have three grown children and all are good contributing members of society.

I sure could have used a furlough Friday when they were all in school. Just imagine, we would spend our Friday's at the zoo, at the beach, at a movie, at the library or just having fun at home.

Parents, instead of a sit-in, why not take your kids somewhere to have fun with them, while you can. Set a good example and be their companion for a day.

Ron Serrao
Volcano, Big Island



If, by some happenstance, Charles Djou manages to win the special election in Hawai'i's First District, his very first act should be to extend his heartfelt thanks to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for intervening on his behalf.

When the Democratic establishment weighed in by targeting Djou, the councilman instantly went from third place to bearer of the role of anti-establishment candidate. And, given his opposition to virtually all elements of the health care reform bill, Djou most deserves the role of candidate of special interests.

I hope voters will see through counter-productive ads, and realize that former Congressman Ed Case is the only candidate deserving of the "independent" label in this race.

I also hope voters see Case's focus on "fiscal conservatism" and see that his voting record shows a strong progressive identity.

While he may not be the favorite of labor leaders, Ed Case is a friend of the working men and women of O'ahu. He is the best candidate to carry on the course set by gubernatorial candidate Neil Abercrombie.

Richard Weigel


When well-respected Sen. Dan Akaka last ran for re-election, Ed Case chose to run against him in the Democratic primary, creating unnecessary expense and negativity. Case lost more than the election — he lost the respect of Democrats.

Now he is running to go back to Congress, a job he gave up to run against Akaka, creating a split in Democratic votes that could send a Republican to Congress from this heavily Democratic district.

The true Democrat in the race is state Senate President Colleen Hanabusa. Demo-crats need to support her.

Richard Michaels
Mākena, Maui


I was surprised to learn that The Advertiser didn't endorse Colleen Hanabusa. Your paper made an excellent case in endorsing her when she last ran for Congress.

Colleen Hanabusa put forth and got passed a strong campaign finance reform bill. Sen. Hanabusa's efforts in the Legislature show that she is not afraid of taking tough stands when it comes to finance. She supports regulatory reform for the financial industry (Wall Street), the biggest issue facing Congress today. This is Democratic policy and President Obama's policy.

The Advertiser should read its own well-done evaluation of all three candidates more closely. We should send Colleen Hanabusa to Washington.

Bob Nakata
Former state senator