CORRECTED: Best of Maui Politics And Environment

Politics and Environment Best County Official Alan Arakawa Going into an election in which five other people would like to replace him, we’re sure that Mayor Arakawa will appreciate the fact that our readers consider him the county’s best public official. Hey, have you seen his yellow campaign signs? The ones that say, “Mayor Arakawa–Getting It Done.” Pure genius. Who cares what “it” is–“it” is whatever the prospective voter wants it … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST TOWN TO VISIT: Paia #BOM2013

Best Town to Visit Paia What is it with our readers and Paia? The North Shore town itself is cramped, with considerable parking and traffic issues. Sure, it’s quaint and walkable and features lots of boutiques, cafes and a few miles of gorgeous shoreline, but beyond there’s just not a lot for visitors to do. What’s more, the county’s Fourth Friday Town Parties there proved to be a bust–for a variety of reasons dealing with crime and a serious … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST TOWN TO LIVE IN: Kihei #BOM2013

Best Town to Live in Kihei Kihei (and South Maui in general) gets a bad rap from people on Maui, but for our readers, there’s no better place on the island to live. Kihei is poorly planned, they say, or it’s too ugly. Others say it has too many bars and not enough visible coastline. All are true statements to a certain extent, but as my attorney friend Ben Lowenthal wrote in one of his recent State of Aloha columns in The Maui News, Kihei … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST SCARY PUBLIC FIGURE: Keith Taguma #BOM2013

Best Scary Public Figure Keith Taguma Frankly, I’d be shocked if anyone else won this category. Maui Police Officer Keith Taguma is a Legend on Maui. You guys saw how that Taguma Watch Facebook Page got something like 5,000 likes in just a few days last week, right? Who knows how many thousands of parking tickets he’s written through the years–when I did an open search for his name on the Hawaii judiciary’s eCourt Kokua online database of … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST COMMUNITY NON-PROFIT: Maui Food Bank #BOM2013

Best Community Non-Profit Maui Food Bank Our readers gave the nod to Maui Food Bank last year, and apparently saw no reason to change their minds this year. And why not? The place serves food to about 10,000 people every month–people on Maui who would otherwise go hungry. “A statewide network of suppliers allows the Maui Food Bank to turn each dollar donated into 6 lbs. of non-perishable groceries, as well as fresh produce, bread, meat, fish … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUE: Cane Burning #BOM2013

Best Environmental Issue Cane Burning Forgive the pun, but the controversy over Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar’s insistence that the only way they can process sugar is by first burning the cane in the fields is really blowing up. Defenders point to the company’s 800 employees and the fact that HC&S has “always” harvested sugar in this manner–as though that makes the dumping of toxics and particulates into the atmosphere somehow beyond … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST STATE BLUNDER: Monsanto #BOM2013

Best State Blunder Monsanto We’re assuming that our readers defined blunder as allowing Monsanto to come to Hawaii, buy up huge tracts of land and start growing genetically modified crops. Well, given our nation’s market economy, the great State of Hawaii didn’t have much a choice in any of that. And, in fact, there are signs that state officials have collectively raised their brows ever so slightly at the ag business giant. Just a week ago in … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST COUNTY BLUNDER: Department of Liquor Control #BOM2013

Best County Blunder Maui County Department of Liquor Control Even before former Liquor Control Investigator Justin Dobbs filed his lawsuit against the County of Maui in October 2012, alleging all manner of bad deeds going down at the LC (which is still pending), most people who’d spent more than a day on Maui knew that something just wasn’t right with the county agency that enforces liquor laws. Put simply, the same agency that issues liquor … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE: Neil Abercrombie #BOM2013

Best Gubernatorial Candidate Neil Abercrombie There are political leaders who seem born for their jobs. They exude confidence, inspire those around them and generally get stuff done. They are strong without being tyrannical and just without being nagging. Then there’s Neil Abercrombie. Don’t get me wrong–he’s a smart and nice guy–but the words “confidence” and “leadership” just aren’t associated with him. After all, charges from Democrats of … [Read more...]

MauiTime Best of Maui BEST MAYORAL CANDIDATE: Alan Arakawa #BOM2013

Best Mayoral Candidate Alan Arakawa It’s always fun to ask this question a couple years before the next election, both to gauge the popularity of the incumbent and to see just how many of you even think about politics in off-years. And our voters were pretty clear on both accounts, making clear that current Mayor Alan Arakawa is still pretty popular among the scant few of you who bothered to answer this question. Seriously though, Arakawa won … [Read more...]