From Marc Hodges, co-founder of the Maui TEA Party
I am standing for election to the office of Mayor of Maui County. I humbly ask for your support and for your vote.
We are facing serious economic challenges here in Maui County.
The global recession has caused many of our families to lose their jobs and their homes. Businesses here are struggling to regain momentum. Tourism is still down and our exports and other industries are not yet able to pick up the slack. The global economic indicators are not strong. And the political indicators are worse.
Most of our leaders in federal, state and local governments are piling on major new taxes and regulations. At the very time our families need to cut costs to survive, these unprecedented new taxes and regulations on energy, health care, purchasing, and property are making almost everything we need to live and work here more expensive. And, these new taxes and regulations are discouraging our visitors, our businesses and our investors, preventing our economic recovery, and costing us our jobs and our homes.
Who is willing to do what it takes to lead Maui County back to prosperity? There are several other significant candidates in the contest for the Mayor's office. I honor each of them and I respect their records of public service. But, regretfully, despite years of holding Hawaii public office, or perhaps because of it, none of these candidates has shown the ability or the willingness to do we need.
There is an answer. What we need to do now is clear. I have a plan.
The government cannot fix the economy and it cannot create real jobs. Only you, the citizen, can do that. The new Maui County Mayor must make county government work better with less money and must serve you in a fast and fair manner. The new Mayor must get the county out of your way so you can get on with the job of rebuilding our economy.
As Mayor of Maui County, I will do what we need right now to help get our economy moving again. I will rein in government. I will shrink taxes to put money back in your pocket where it belongs. I will apply county regulations so that the economy can grow and our people can prosper once again.
I have proven my ability to work within government to create and lead teams that make government work better and save your tax dollars. As manager of the Kahoolawe Island Reserve's marine sanctuary, I brought federal, state, and county resources together with community volunteers to create Hawaii's most effective marine resource protection program. While serving as an officer in the Maui Police Department, I initiated and managed the team that saved Maui County taxpayers many millions of dollars in costs by bringing frontline personnel, managers and executives together to apply new strategies and new technology to old problems (read more at http://www.newleadersolutions.com).
Having been a member of HGEA and SHOPO government employee unions, I understand the challenges faced by our government employees and I appreciate the hard work and sacrifices that so many of have made. But there are serious problems with waste and ineffectiveness in our government. Public employees cannot expect to weather the economic storm intact while our private sector workers lose their jobs and homes, especially since the cost of government operations is a major obstacle to economic recovery. Our county can and must do better with less and I will make that happen.
As a published natural resource scientist born and raised in Hawaii, I appreciate the value of our natural heritage to our lives and our economy and the need to conserve. I have worked for years to help protect our natural environment here in Hawaii. But environmental policies that benefit a few elites while harming jobs and families are not acceptable. As a husband and father of two small children, and as a hunter and outdoorsman, I believe that the earth is God's gift for all people to use. People must come first. As Mayor, I will pursue water and land use policies that promote our community prosperity.
Having helped create and lead the community coalition of Hawaiians and Filipinos that worked successfully to reduce racial discrimination in American mortgage lending nationwide, I believe we are all Americans together and we share a common destiny. Race-based government programs are inappropriate and undermine our economic and community strength.
As a small business owner here on Maui, I understand that most new jobs come from small business and that small business is hit hardest by new taxes and regulations. As Mayor, I will make it easier to start, run and grow all businesses and especially small businesses.
The challenges are daunting, but there is a way forward. Maui County' greatest days are yet to come. As your Mayor, I will do what it takes to get our economy moving.
Your time is precious. I ask humbly for your support and for your vote.
Marc Hodges, Maui