By Keli‘i Akina
Many of the outcomes are in from the election, and there are rumors of change within the air.
Hawaii’s newly elected or reelected lawmakers haven’t but taken the reins of presidency, however we nonetheless bear in mind their marketing campaign guarantees and are optimistic about seeing them addressed.
Some individuals prefer to say that politicians by no means hold their marketing campaign guarantees, however that’s an oversimplification. Many elected officers attempt to make good on their guarantees, however run into apathy, paperwork, political opposition from particular pursuits and different obstacles.
That is very true in Hawaii, the place efficient one-party rule almost ensures that change comes slowly, if in any respect.
So we shouldn’t be so fast to level fingers, particularly since a few of that blame belongs to us as properly. Politicians could make guarantees, nevertheless it’s as much as us, the individuals, to carry them accountable.
If we don’t demand motion, followup on our calls for and present the results on the poll field, then we have now failed in our civic responsibility.
For instance, Gov.-elect Josh Inexperienced made some thrilling guarantees about taxation and housing, and has indicated an curiosity in exempting medical providers from the overall excise tax — one thing that the Grassroot Institute has lengthy advocated and is the topic of our newest petition.
We definitely can dispute among the components of his “emergency plan for Hawaii’s housing disaster,” however his guarantees to remove crimson tape, streamline approvals and deal with zoning and different housing boundaries are sensible and achievable methods to encourage extra homebuilding within the islands.
Will our future governor hold his guarantees?
I anticipate that he’ll strive, however his diploma of success relies upon partly on us. We have to hold him and all elected officers accountable by encouraging them to observe up on the guarantees they made on the marketing campaign path.
And we have now to indicate our assist after they do, no matter social gathering affiliation.
This isn’t to say we must always assist every thing that they suggest, solely that we give credit score the place credit score is due when good proposals handle to cross the end line.
Many of the women and men about to take their seats within the Legislature have spoken about their want to decrease the price of dwelling in our state. But when they suggest new taxes, increased budgets, new rules or costly authorities packages, will they hear opposition from the general public?
Each election holds the promise of change, however with out accountability, these guarantees develop into empty marketing campaign rhetoric. We’ve finished our half by going to the polls, however our job as engaged residents doesn’t finish on the poll field.
Preserving our elected officers accountable to their marketing campaign guarantees is a job that continues all 12 months lengthy. It could take many kinds, from testifying on the Legislature to writing letters to the editor or utilizing social media to encourage others to make their voices heard.
In fact, the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii will at all times be right here to supply assist and steering alongside the best way. And you’ll sit up for extra messages from us about contact your representatives on vital points.
Keli‘i Akina is president and CEO of Grassroot Institute of Hawaii.