Letters 9-1-13


Ford not a bully, but courageous

I’d like to heap praise on Brenda Ford for not only having the backbone and moral fiber to stand up for what is right, good, “and legal,” but in particular to champion the frequently different and unique causes of West Hawaii. Again and again, Ford has had the fortitude to act in the best interest and on the behalf of her constituents of Kona-Ka‘u-Volcano, the people she represents.

She is a brave representative for her district and has previously scolded the county for wasting our county’s money and resources in unsound countersuits. So, it looks like she’s taking the financial burden away from the county and is further questioning the appointment of Bobby Jean Leithead Todd as head of Environmental Management by pursuing this case in the courts as a citizen “out-of-pocket.” It’s challenging and I dare say difficult to connect the dots from “English” and “law” degrees to being like (or akin to) an “engineering” degree?

Billy Kenoi’s statement that Ford’s actions were “politically motivated” implies that:

A. His are not; after his decision to “lateral-pass” Leithead Todd to Environmental Management from Planning, after Leithead-Todd made grievous errors in her position as planning director most recently in: 1. Rubber-stamping a sight-unseen South Kona development in an old-growth ohia forest/native habitat, which thanks to some aware and diligent citizens, got reversed in Third Circuit Court by Judge Ronald Ibarra just prior to her “sudden” transfer; 2. Had not a clue what a priority one watershed area was, nor its function in the ecosystem; 3. Does not have a firm grasp on environmental sustainability therefore, environmental management seems out of her league.

B. That Brenda Ford is not an elected politician (councilman and public servant) selected to represent District 7 and entrusted to vote for her district’s causes — and when that might not work; a capable contributing citizen following her own conscience, at her own expense.

It’s important to remember just because a differing opinion is not in “the majority” perhaps “unpopular” or “inconvenient” does not make it “wrong” or even “less valid.” So no, not really, not even remotely is “doing your job,” or standing up to the bigger boys on the playground equitable to “bullying.” It is courageous.

Kitty Lyons

Kona