I have lived in Hawaii and paid Hawaii taxes for the last 30 years and lived in the same house in Kihei for all 30 years. I have watched the community grow as the island has grown and as the years have passed both myself, due to ageing, and my children, due to what life deals us, have had to deal with medical problems on many occasions … from major heart and cancer surgery to sports injuries which needed surgery.

Luckily for my family and me we can afford to leave the island for state of the art medical care and have done so on every occasion on the ”’advice of Maui doctors.”’ For many years at dinners and funerals the topic of conversation inevitably turns to … “why cant we get good medical care on Maui” and the answer usually ends with “hey we live in paradise on a small island and have to trade off things like modern health care”. By the way, there is no one who disputes that health care at Maui Memorial is substandard including the doctors who work there.

Take the time to read the testimony. The one day I read in the newspaper that a reputable health care company wanted to invest in a state of the art health care facility in Kihei … and invest over 200 million.

I became ecstatic and assumed we would have a hospital in due time to care for me and those who couldn’t afford the time or money to leave. Recently the low whisper I had been hearing turned into a loud roar at a town meeting I went to a few weeks ago in Kihei.

Hundreds of normal tax paying, law abiding citizens. more than I have ever seen in one place in Kihei..all driven to the point of such anger that if lynching was in style Sen. Roz Baker would have been in real trouble, as the only person in the room against the new hospital and the only person in the room with a vote.

The only apparent reasons for not letting free enterprise and compassion for the people of Maui speak – and those reasons are politics and greed.

Never before in my 30 years in Kihei have I seen an issue as flamatory or motivating as this…the people of Kihei will remember the way our Representatives represented us on this issue..it is not going away..for me and my friends this is a back against the wall issue..we deserve a clear and public hearing on the island of Maui with our Representatives present to see the reaction of their constituency … to tell the people of Maui why the state..who wont have to contribute to it..are denying the people of Maui the opportunity of life saving health care on their island.

”’Shep Gordon is a resident of Kihei, Maui”’

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