March 1981 Home   Newsletters

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Spring 1982

Message from the President (Rhoda Miller)
Art Show
Action Alert Sounded
Reapportionment Action Reviewed (Anne Lee)
Mahalo (Anna Hoover)
Bed and Breakfast Program
Sign Up for Legislative Interviews
Juvenile Rights Stressed (Cathy Filson)
Maui League Underway
Hazardous Wastes in Hawaii Discussed

Reapportionment Action Reviewed

Our committee of about eight members has been quite busy since mid-summer. We monitored meetings and hearings of the 1981 State Reapportionment Commission and carried out a number of other related activities. One activity was to have two members of the Reapportionment Commission speak with us. First, James Hall, Republican member of the Commission, spoke to us, outlining his objections to the tentative plans adopted by the Commission on July 14 and his impressions of how decisions were being made by the Commission. A few days later the chairman of the Commission, Dr. Ruben Mallari, met with us and gave an impartial discussion of the adopted plan as well as other matters. We had tried to get a Democratic member of the Commission to meet with us.. and give us the arguments in support of the tentative plan, but none agreed to come. Among the four Democrats and four Republicans on the Commission, voting has pretty much followed the same pattern: two of the Re-publicans have joined the four Democrats and two of the Republicans voted together.

On July 27 I read a letter to the Commission suggesting that they make re-apportionment materials available in public libraries and satellite city halls. Since the public hearings around the state would take place in August, we felt that it was important to make sure that the public be as informed as possible. Our suggestion was warmly received by Chair-man Mallari and he subsequently directed his staff to carry it out. Several radio stations reported our suggestion on their news programs of July 27, after we released our letter to them.

On August 9 the Jim Doney Show (KGMB TV) aired a discussion on reapportionment among Gene Hoffman of Common Cause, Dr. Mallari and me. The August 15 issue of the Star-Bulletin published a letter by Hoffman and me urging the public to at-tend the public hearings and telling them how to go about testifying before the Commission. The Advertiser did not publish our letter. One of our observations is that the Star-Bulletin has been more responsive in keeping the reapportionment issue before the public.

At the public hearing held at the State Capitol auditorium on August 20 Marion Saunders presented testimony, on behalf of League, reminding the Commission of its responsibility to accommodate as much as possible the expressed interests of people testifying at hearings. Marion also read another letter to the Commission on August 31, reminding them that since they had now heard all the public input they should react, discuss and openly consider changes to the tentative plans in light of criticisms and support expressed to them.

Carolyn Sugiyama, esq. and Cathy Filson of the Hilo League and Ellie Dalton of the Kauai League have been particularly helpful in attending the hearings on their islands and in re-porting back to us.

The Commission submitted the final reapportionment plan October 1. We will carefully compare the final plan with the tentative plan and prepare an evaluation paper. In addition, we will be writing a report including a number of procedural comments to be sent to the Reapportionment Commission as well as to the Lieutenant Governor's office.

Anne Lee

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