Go Rail Go supporters have launched an aggressive campaign to build support for the city’s planned $5.3 billion elevated steel on steel rail.
Recent polls show public support is falling, and the group that helped get the rail approved on the ballot in 2008, has redoubled its efforts to make sure the 20 mile system is build.
The organizers have gone from running radio ads and holding protests against opponents of the project, to calling and visiting people at their home to tell them they should agree that Honolulu needs jobs and that rail is going to provide jobs, according one Kalihi resident who was approached by Go Rail Go members.
Go Rail Go also is sending representatives door to door to ask residents to sign a petition in support of rail and to hand out brochures promoting the project.
Guam Senator Goes to Bat for Hawaii
Guam Senator Frank Blas, Jr. introduced a resolution (Res. 371-31) asking Guam’s Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives to introduce legislation to exempt Guam, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and Alaska from the U.S. Build provision of the Jones Act.
The Jones Act mandates that any company shipping goods between American ports must use ships built in the United States, manned by American labor and owned by American investors.
The exemption, if passed, would take away the requirement that ships be built here.
While Jones Act supporters say the mandate creates jobs, opponents say the American made ships are more expensive to operate because they are heavier and less fuel efficient than many foreign made ships.
US Senator John McCain introduced a similar provision in 2010 and former Hawaii Congressmen Ed Case and Charles Djou have pushed for exemptions from the Jones Act law, saying it raises prices of most goods being imported and exported from Hawaii.
Governor Announces Plan to Approve Public Trust Lands
Gov. Neil Abercrombie will sign Senate Bill 2783 into law on Wednesday, transferring Kaka’ako Makai lands to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA).
OHA trustees, congressional delegates, state legislators, and other stakeholders will attend the bill signing event, which will take place at Washington Place, the home of Hawai’i’s last reigning monarch Queen Liliu’okalani.