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Governor's State of the State Address: Nothing on False Missile Alert

Wayne Yoshioka

The State’s Chief Executive addressed a joint Senate and House assembly today in his annual State of the State. HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.

Governor David Ige’s State of the State address covered what his administration has accomplished and what it’s going to do to help ease homelessness, build more affordable housing, educate keiki, protect the environment and invest in highways.  But, following his 42-minute speech, he was asked why he did not address the false missile alert on July 13th.

“I made lots of press statements last week and then we had the hearings so we have made corrections to assure that two Saturdays ago will never happen again.  You know and we’re moving forward.”

Credit Wayne Yoshioka
Senate president Ron Kouchi (right) with Senate vice president, Michelle Kidani and Senate majority leader J. Kalani English.

Senate President Ron Kouchi said he felt the false missile alert was important enough to include in his opening day speech last week.  He also says the Council on Revenues projected 14-million dollar increase in tax collections is already spent.  Kouchi based that on an assessment by Department of Health director Dr. Ginny Pressler.

“Two weeks ago Dr. Pressler issued a press statement that by her current calculations of the federal budget, there’s $12.6M in cuts that DOH alone is expecting and that certainly doesn’t address other  departments.”

Senate Majority Leader, J. Kalani English, says he’s looking for funding and new technologie to replace the 8-thousand high priority cesspools for his constituents in Up-Country Maui.

“A cesspool is putting everything in a hole in the ground.  Septic system is separating the solids and the liquids and then putting the liquids onto the ground.  So, the people in upcountry pointed out the obvious and said if you’re trying to stop Nitrates from entering the water system and you’re still separating water and putting it in the ground, you’re not achieving the goal.”

Credit Wayne Yoshioka
House Speaker Scott Saiki (center) with, L-R, Vice Speaker Mark Nakashima, House Finance committee chair Sylvia Luke, Majority leader Della Au Belatti and Majority Floor Leader Dee Morikawa

House Speaker Scott Saiki would have liked to have heard what the governor intends to do to correct the state emergency management alert system and the Thirty Meter Telescope project on Mauna Kea.

“The other area that I was disappointed in was because he did emphasize his focus on STEM, on technology issues, I was disappointed that he did not reiterate his support for TMT.”

For HPR News, I’m Wayne Yoshioka.

Wayne Yoshioka
Wayne Yoshioka is an award-winning journalist who has worked in television, print and radio in Hawaiʻi. He also has been on both sides of politics as a state departmental appointee and political/government reporter. He covered Hurricane Iwa (1982) as a TV reporter; was the State Department of Defense/Civil Defense spokesperson for Hurricane Iniki (1992); and, commanded a public affairs detachment in Afghanistan (2006). He has a master's degree in Communication from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and is a decorated combat veteran (Legion of Merit, Bronze Star and 22 other commendation/service medals). He resides in Honolulu.
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