Letters | 8-21-13


PUBLIC ACCESS

More access needed to Mauna Kea resort’s shoreline

A great thing about Hawaii is that no resort can restrict beach access to the public. What has become public beach access at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel has turned out to be a joke.

The resort allows those into the beach if parking is available, and, if you don’t get there by 8:30 a.m., the parking for the beach is full. I would like to know if public parking has been taken away from the beach access, with some of that parking given to the golf club, because there is never enough parking for those who want to go to the beach.

It is time for our Hawaii County mayor and elected officials to hold Mauna Kea accountable for taking total control over the public access to a beach that belongs to us, not the resort.

Public access should be taken away from the resorts, because they abuse it. Let’s build a parking lot up off the highway with an access trail to the south portion of the beach, like at Hapuna Beach State Park. If the access road crosses the golf course, well so be it, this has been done before.

Parking fees can be charged to construct the site and the resort can help cover the cost for taking our beach for all these years. It is time to stop this private resort from having complete control over a public access beach and turn it over to the county.

John William Hanson

Kailua-Kona

GOVERNMENT

Applauding Brenda Ford’s efforts against favoritism

It is disappointing to watch a prominent resident of our island stand up to obvious flagrant favoritism in our county government — only to have a muddy pool of politics ignore her and let the problem stand.

I applaud the efforts of Brenda Ford in an all too common disregard for integrity in the workings of our government. Too many weeds growing in our garden and not too many people willing to pull them out. Thank you Brenda for continuing to do what is best for out island.

Steve Snyder

Kalaoa

GAMBLING

High stakes bingo resolution could pave way to legalized gambling

I am writing to share my concerns about the inclusion of Resolution 158-13 in the Hawaii State Association of Counties legislative package. It proposes legalizing high stakes bingo for a source of revenue. I believe that this resolution is bad for Hawaii, nor should it be fast-tracked, bypassing community discussion.

Hawaii’s residents have strongly expressed a desire to keep gambling out of Hawaii at the Legislature. The Hawaii County Council should not attempt to undermine this desire through the false hope of new revenue. Studies clearly show the negative effects of gambling after it is introduced into a community, often costing the state money in the end.

Resolution 158-13 will also generate revenue from high stakes bingo via a tax that will target the most vulnerable in Hawaii, hurt our economy by diverting money away from struggling businesses, and will pave the way toward legalizing gambling in Hawaii.

A perfect example of why Hawaii should not legalize high stakes bingo is the 1980 Jefferson County constitutional amendment. It allowed charity bingo, which opened Pandora’s box for allowing legalized gambling within the state of Alabama. Hawaii should learn from Alabama’s mistake. The lesser of an evil is still an evil.

Lee McIntosh

Naalehu