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Sunday, October 21, 2012
Charter Amendment: Honolulu Council Grabs for Control of Rail Funds
By Andrew Walden @ 9:36 PM :: 8609 Views :: Maui County, Education K-12

by Andrew Walden

With all eyes glued on the mayoral race, pro-rail forces are quietly hoping for passage of a Honolulu Charter amendment which could allow the County Council to continue funding HART over Cayetano’s objection.

On the Honolulu ballot, Proposal #2 “Relating to the Creation of Funds” would amend Section 9-202 of the Honolulu County Code transferring control of Special Fund authority from the Mayor to the Council.

The current wording of Section 9-202 is:

“…the mayor, with the approval of the council, may establish other funds when necessary and when no appropriate class of funds exists.”

If Proposal #2 wins in the November 6 election, Section 9-202 will be changed to read:

“…the council, on its own initiative or on the recommendation of the mayor, may establish other funds when the council deems it necessary and when no appropriate class of funds exists.”

The outgoing council has a 7-2 pro-rail majority with Ann Kobayashi and Tom Berg in the minority.

Only three council seats are up for election—

  • Berg faces Kym Pine in CD1,
  • Kobayashi faces Parsons Brinkhoff employee Jim Hayes in CD5, and
  • anti-Rail candidate Sam Aiona faces PRP’s favorite Carol Fukunaga and a bevy of others in Special Election for CD6 necessitated by the resignation of Tulsi Gabbard.

Even if Berg, Aiona, and Kobayashi all win, the balance of council power would be a 6-3 veto-proof pro-rail majority.

If Proposal #2 is approved by voters, the Council could create any special fund it wishes and override Cayetano's veto with a 6-3 super-majority.


FULL TEXT: Honolulu Proposal #2


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