November 2005 Home   Newsletters

December 2005

January 2006

President's Message
Planning Meeting on Dec. 17 (Pearl Johnson)
Opinion: In Support of Kakaako Plan (Pearl Johnson)
Voter Service Meets Jan. 5 (Arlene Ellis & Piilani Kaopuiki)
How to Help with Voter Registration (Piilani Kaopuiki)
Planning Association Says Excise Tax Will Increase by 1.5% (Charles Carole)

Planning Association says Excise tax will increase by 1.5%

At a meeting at the Pacific Club on Nov. 29, the American Planning Association (APA) handed out a 2-page summary of changes they predict for Oahu by 2030. Among the predictions was an increase in the Excise tax by 1.5 percentage points and a 30% surcharge on the property tax rate to pay for rail bonds.

Changes on Oahu resulting from transit was the topic of the meeting of the APA and other organizations. A panel composed of Paul Brewbaker, John Whalen, Karl Kim and Randy Moore gave their views on the changes that they see coming to Oahu in 2030 because of rail transit.

Other changes predicted in the APA summary included:

  • The federal government might only provide $600 million for transit construction cost of about $4 or 5 billion,
  • Road pricing would remain politically unacceptable in 2030 Oahu,
  • Mass tourism in 2030 will be substantially curtailed due to high air travel costs and a one-foot increase in sea level,
  • More visitors in 2030 will be staying in vacation rentals such as condos and B & Bs,
  • The City would not allow private transit services to compete with The Bus and rail line,
  • Transit oriented development (TOD) would result in a mixed bag in spite of initial expectations that every station would become a beehive of commercial and residential activity, and
  • Much of the line from Iwilei to downtown and to Waikiki and UH Manoa is elevated.

The panel members had their own views on 2030 changes. Brewbaker, Kim and Moore supported rail transit, higher taxes and fees, more Transit-oriented developments around rail stations and greater population density in urban Honolulu. Moore suggested that the McCully area be designated as an urban redevelopment area for urban villages. John Whalen stressed pedestrian safety in all this development.

If you are interested in your shaping the debate, attend the public scoping meeting on the Honolulu High-Capacity Transit Corridor Project on Wednesday, December 13, 2005 from 5 to 8 pm at Neil Blaisdell Center's Pikake Room, 777 Ward Ave. Another meeting will be held at Kapolei Middle School on Dec. 14 from 7 to 9 pm. The City wants to consider all the transportation options in its Alternative Analysis Study to be completed by November 2006 for City Council decision on future transit options.

Charles Carole
November 2005 Home   Newsletters January 2006