Consultant and Farmer
Consultant, Farmer, Public School Teacher, State Legislator, OHA Trustee
State Legislator 1982-1988, OHA Trustee 1990-2002, Senator 2004-2014
My past experience in private sector as a consultant and small business owner as well as my previous work experience as a public school teacher on O'ahu and Moloka'i islands and my present occupation as a consultant, cut-flower and produce farmer.
I believe the top three district challenges include global warming and sea level rise that annually threatens the coastal highway between Kahalu'u and Haleiwa including Waikane, Ka'a'awa, Sunset Beach, Laniakea and Haleiwa and causes erosion to occur along the coastal land during storm surges along the north shore, particularly near Sunset Beach. I also believe affordable housing is a high priority for the district as too many homes along the shoreline are presently utilized as vacation rentals. Finally, the third challenge is the unending traffic along a narrow two lane highway that can only accommodate so many vehicles. A bypass road between Haleiwa and Waimea Bay would relieve the traffic caused by people along the shoreline crossing the two lane highway to access the beach at Laniakea in that area causing traffic to crawl every day.
The highest priority is keeping the country and rural areas in productive agriculture to address food security and sustainability. There are very few farms on O'ahu that are currently in production and they are always under the threat of luxury home development. Policies must ensure that real agriculture production is a very high priority as 95 percent of all food, goods and services are presently imported from off shore areas. Were a natural catastrophe or labor strike to occur the food supply in Hawaii would be less than 10 days.
Address the threat caused global warming and sea level rise which will render the coastal highway between Kahalu'u and Haleiwa un-useable thus stopping any and all transportation between and from that area. This is already under threat during king tides as the DOT annually shores up highway, particularly near Ka'a'awa, Punalu'u and Sunset Beach where in 2018 shore erosion has claimed a part of the bike path adjacent to the highway. The second priority is providing affordable housing for those who otherwise cannot afford to rent or own their own home.
It has been my honor and privilege to serve as an elected official while also working as a consultant and small business person during that time. Raising cut-flowers, vegetables, carbohydrates, aquaponics, livestock and bees has been a refreshing and important aspect of my life.
Serving in the legislature has also been an great privilege and I have received the outstanding Legislator awards from several organizations including the Hawaiian Humane Society Arthur McCormack Award, (2009); the Humane Society of the United States, (2007-2014); the West Hawaii Humane Society, (2011); the President's Award of the Audobon Association, (2011); the Pew Foundation, (2011) the Hawaii Court Reporters and Captioners Association, (2011); the Retirees of HGEA (2011) and Equality Hawaii, (2012).
I have served as a Board member of the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, (1994-1995); the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, (1999-2000); the Drug Abuse Resistance Education Association, (1996-2002); and the St. Andrews Priory Board of Trustees.
I have written 136 laws and chaired several different committees for many years as opposed to my opponent who wrote only 2 laws and has never chaired any committee.