Our state must prioritize and determine wants versus needs. I would like to go line by line through the budget in order to understand and see where our state is overspending. We must make government more cost-effective and efficient. To do this, we would need to eliminate redundancies - why would we need to pay twice for the same work? During these tough economic times, with many of our neighbors out of work, politicians and legislators should take a pay cut.
Since March 2020, Governor David Ige has suspended our state's Sunshine Laws. Especially during a pandemic, kama'aina should know what is going on with the state. Many decisions are being made, which will affect our lives for months and years to come. Government operating in the dark is anathema to what our state and country are founded upon. An action to immediately take upon my election to office is to reinstate our Sunshine Laws. Down the road, I will work toward getting meeting minutes, expenditure reports, audits and other public records made available to the public. An engaged electorate creates and sustains a better government.
For far too long in Hawaii, Special Interests and outside forces have determined the course of our government. It's time to bring common sense and the will of the people back to local government. Just take a look at the latest COVID mandates from Governor Ige and Mayor Caldwell. As government officials, we should always be asking ourselves, are we working smarter or harder? Adding common sense back to government will mean making sensible choices for our state. For instance, doing something which saves money and is more efficient, instead of doing that same thing the same way it's been done for the last 20 years, just because that's the way we've always done that.
There are three facets of education we should address to create the next generation of Hawaii innovators.
1.Revive and reimagine Hawaii's Vocational / Technical programs. One program we could look at is technology; coding and web designing. These courses could be adapted and adopted into a Vo/Tech setting.
2.Removing the Common Core curriculum from the public education system and move toward a content rich, back-to-basics curriculum for Hawaii students. Also get real and honest feedback from teachers as to what they think their students need to succeed.
3.Provide financial literacy education - at no cost - to help residents climb out of debt and stay out of debt. Giving people the tools to control their own finances, alters their lives more than any government regulation could.
Now, more than ever we need to stand up for our men and women in blue. I support our local law enforcement. They're our friends, family, church members, former classmates, neighbors, and colleagues. Defunding the police is a ludicrous idea for Hawaii. Taking a look at HPD expenditures, and considering the volume of calls and responses, the cost to the average taxpayer in Hawaii is roughly $1.50 a day. The way to improve our police force is through education and providing them with the tools they need to succeed.
LAW & ORDER
Many of us, whether still in the workforce or on a fixed income, struggle with the high cost of living in Hawaii nei. Our families need a break. A solution could be reducing or eliminating the GET on household items, groceries and medications. Another idea is to reduce property taxes for seniors. Adjust Hawaii tax code to match or have parity with national tax laws, in essence lowering taxes for middle to low income families.
OHANA & KUPUNA
The Hawaii we live in today, is very different from the one we grew up in. In 2018 over 100 children were identified as potential child sexual exploitation victims, and according to the Attorney General's Uniform Crime Report Statistics (2003-2012), roughly 2,780 youth in Hawaii may be at risk for commercial sexual exploitation. Through education and awareness and the creation of a Sex Trafficking Task Force to decrease demand and limit supply, we can help our vulnerable youth. Our keiki are not for sale.
PROTECTING OUR KEIKI
From the moment of conception through to the moment of death, every life matters and is a gift from our creator. Abortion and assisted suicide are two issues which cause great division and something we all need to have an honest conversation about. For our society will be judged by how we treat our most vulnerable population.
First things first, we have to allow small businesses to re-open. Many have gone into debt to comply with the new state regulations and are ready to re-open.
Second, we need to take action in implementing a safe way to allow tourism to resume. Yes the curve will rise slightly, but we must have the courage to see it through. Our numbers do not support a complete shutdown of our state. Other states, much larger than Hawaii have implemented common sense measures which allow businesses to reopen. Governor Ige and Mayor Caldwell are relying too heavily on Federal funding - which will run out soon - leaving us scrambling to make up over $2 billion in revenue loss.
Small business are the backbone of our communities and crushing regulation, plus the COVID shutdown has forced many to shutter their business indefinitely. We can immediately help small businesses by providing them with incentives and diminish regulatory roadblocks to doing business here in Hawaii. Governor Ige and Mayor Caldwell have failed our local small business owners. We allow big box stores, like Target and Costco to remain open, yet we keep our small mom and pop's shuttered. It doesn't make sense.
Currently Hawaii's economy relies solely on Tourism, which is a recipe for disaster, as we've witnessed during the COVID-19 shutdowns. The basic idea of diversification is to not move entirely away from tourism, but have other industries which can add to the financial mix. It's like having a side job when your current employer hands you a pay cut.
In order to recover and thrive, Hawaii will need to diversify her economy. One idea is to grow Hawaii's film industry by providing tax incentives for productions filming and editing in Hawaii. Another idea is to grow our agriculture industry and provide incentives for local farms, slaughterhouses, dairies and ranches. We can also provide a home for the tech sector. Established companies, like facebook and IMB are looking to improve remote work opportunities and grow cloud computing.
Thank you for taking the time to visit with me. My name is Jenny Boyette and I am a first-time candidate for the State House of Representatives, District 33. That's 'Aiea, parts of Halawa Heights and parts of Waimalu.
I have been living in Aiea for two years. However, I have spent time visiting friends, family, parks, restaurants and businesses within Aiea for over 20 years. The uniqueness of 'Aiea is her friendly and welcoming community.
I grew up in Kailua and graduated from Kalaheo High School.
I attended Leeward Community College and eventually graduated from University of Hawaii at Manoa. I worked my way through college at KGMB-tv.
I am not a politician. I am a resident, just like you. We all want similar things for beautiful 'Aiea. We want her to prosper, community businesses to thrive, our keiki to receive a good education and for our friends and families to feel safe.
Please allow me to work for you. Your concerns are my concerns, and together we will work toward building a healthy, happy and strong community and state.