In the last days of October the League of Women Voters of Honolulu testified before the Planning Commission regarding Waikiki Bill #1, and the Neighborhood Commission regarding the Neighborhood Plan. Excerpts of these testimonies follow:
"The League of Women Voters of Honolulu supports the concept of Bill 101 to incorporate and adopt the various plans, reports, and studies as part of the legally-adopted plan for the Waikiki Area." In public testimony the League has defined a plan as a thoughtful action program. It seems time to stop studying and for Waikiki and start action toward conserving some livable environment."
"We support the concepts of the "package of bills" 101 to 105 and enacted ordinance No. 4362 (Bill 106) on an environmental basis. If there are "side effects" which would result in displacement of current lower-income residents who need access to the jobs and other facilities in Waikiki, we would make further examination prior to hearing before the City Council."
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The Neighborhood Commission:
"We come tonight for two reasons: to tell you what we like and to make suggestions for changes. In a general way, we applaud the Plan's openness and feasibility...." "However, there are several areas of concern. In Section III. Boundaries: the portion dealing with periodic review should be definitive if the Commission feels it needs to review boundaries at all.
Also, while we understand the desirability of making a boundary change difficult to avoid thoughtless alterations, the petition requirement seems unnecessarily high." "We further recommend that the section dealing with an election to determine desirability of boundary changes be definitive, reading, "A special election shall be called." This would avoid a challenging of your interpretation of the prevailing community attitudes.
"We would like to make only one suggestion pertaining to actual map boundaries-- that being that between areas 6 and 7 and 9 and 10 the freeway seems a more realistic boundary than those natural boundaries indicated.
"There seems to be a general inconsistency in the plan about who can participate in formation, elections and change processes. In the Initiation and Formation section the Plan refers to signatures of registered voters, yet in the Election of a Neighborhood Board section, the Plan defines the participant as a resident 18 years and older. "... we feel that many neighborhoods contain bona fide residents who may wish to participate, but are not registered voters.
"With respect to Initiation and Formation, we feel strongly that the Commission would encourage earliest response and prevent useless wrangling among potential participants if it recommended three alternative methods of election."
"The portion of the plan concerning the removal of 'a board needs to be clarified with examples of reasonable cause given.
"Perhaps the area of most concern be us is funding and staffing. We hope the final plan will consider what might happen in the event the City Council is unwilling to appropriate funds."
"Lastly, regarding the Rules for the Conduct of Business. We strongly
feel that this model set of rules should be developed and made available for public scrutiny."
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Anyone interested in seeing the complete text of these testimonies may find them in the League office.