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Everybody tried to jam into the photo but only a few did the real work. Photo: Aldo Tassara

EDITORIAL: Lipoa Point: The political point and invitation

Politicians from the County and State descended on the headquarters of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) on Lower Main Street in Wailuku to solidify the $19.5 million acquisition of Lipoa Point by the State of Hawaii. It was even proclaimed to be ‘Lipoa Point’ day. A momentous victory as the efforts started by the Save Honolua Coalition about eight years ago, finally came full circle.

This small group of dedicated volunteers had thought this day would never come, though perseverance paid off, the journey was not easy. At the tip of Save Honolua’s spear were trailblazers Councilmember Elle Cochran and Maui mayoral candidate Tamara Paltin. Eight years ago, you would not have seen the words “Councilmember” or “Mayoral Candidate” in front of these names but today, those words appear and because they do, political power gets interjected into things as simple as a “signing event”.

One would expect that at the top of the events list of invites would be the President and Executive Director of Save Honolua who also happens to be, Tamara Paltin. That was not the case. However, an invitation did go out to the Vice-President who declined for personal reasons but when referred to Paltin, an invitation didn’t exist for her at the time. Apparently these “public signing” events with our very public politicians can be private and by invitation only.

The effort to “Save Honolua” has taken all of us working together towards a shared vision but it seemed the maka ‘ainana, the commoners or the eyes of the land, the frontline folks in the trenches were either forgotten or not the ones who were mentioned by name or organization so I want to add these folks to the list of thanks: Les Potts, the Aha Moku Council, Pomaikai Kaniaupio-Crozier, Surfrider Foundation, the Pu’u Kukui watershed crew and the Save Honolua Coalition.

It’s a genuine accomplishment for all who worked for it both in and out of government and the revenue generated goes to pay the pensions for former ML&P workers. A rare example of a deal that’s good for everybody.

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About Neldon "AZD" Mamuad

Neldon "AZD" Mamuad
Neldon "AZD" Mamuad is a pioneering social media entrepreneur who created MAUIWatch to solve the problem of breaking news on Maui. He has a 10-year pedigree running successful broadcast properties on Maui. He created KJMD-FM (Da Jam 98.3) in 2002 and hosted the widely popular "Big Phat Morning Show". Neldon is a local politco, event technologist, and involved with various community organizations. He was formerly Chairman of the Maui County Liquor Control Commission in 2014.

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