TMT Delay Worsens Hawaii's Perception as Worst State for Business
by Keli'i Akina, Ph.D., President/CEO, Grassroot Institute of Hawaii
Hawaii has just won last place in the latest ranking of business climates among the fifty states. According to CNBC, Hawaii is the "Worst state for business: America's paradise lost." See http://www.cnbc.com/id/102770514
And this is not just CNBC talking; a host of respected research reports concur. For example, the Mercatus Center's Freedom in the Fifty States ranks Hawaii's overall business and government climate at 47th. See http://freedominthe50states.org/overall/hawaii .
Whatever the objective ranking may be, just as bad is the perception that Hawaii is a sink-hole for many financial ventures. Despite the Superferry fiasco, we seem to be lulled into a sense of complacency over the business-as-usual handling of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) -- a project which garnered full legal, environmental and cultural approval during a nine-year period, but currently remains at a stand-still because of the state's inability to ensure a safe business climate. How readily will another group of investors and six nations commit to a $1.4 billion research project in Hawaii?
The time has come for the citizens of Hawaii to insist that government leaders reverse those practices that have been decimating Hawaii's business climate and adopt policies that will promote investment, entrepreneurship, and the rule of law! To this end, the Grassroot Institute continues to work on educating policymakers on the best practices for managing government as proven across the 50 states.