Alan Parachini – is a disgusting man.

It both saddens and angers me to read this morning Alan Parachini’s attack on the character of both myself and former Council Member Tim Bynum who passed from this world only a few days ago. The timing, tone and general message was inappropriate, insulting and void of aloha and sensitivity to the Bynum family and his many friends.

Tim was a friend and a good man who did nothing for political gain. His only motivation with regards to all of his work on the Council over the years was to always simply seek justice and do good for the community.

Mr. Parachini should be ashamed of himself. When his obituary is ultimately written it will indicate somewhere I am sure that he was an arm-chair quarterback who behind the safety of his computer keyboard attacked, demeaned and diminished the actions of others.

Gary Hooser

NOTE: In response to a comments asking about what exactly Parachini wrote – It is in todays The Garden Island, there is a beautiful tribute article to Tim and then Parachini wrote a separate opinion article in the same paper questioning our motives for proposing and supporting Bill 2491 saying that we only did it for political purposes.

It is fine to express different opinions on issues, but questioning motive and intent is the same as questioning character and integrity. Parachini has no clue what is/was in our hearts and minds during the 2491 yet he chooses to paint our intent as selfish and self serving. He insults me, our dear friend Tim Bynum and all who worked hard on this issue for the right reasons – to protect the health and environment of our community.

Then he has the further audacity to brag about how the chemical industry and their supporters won because they got elected to the Kauai County Council an employee of Syngenta. Syngenta’s Kauai operations are presently under federal investigation. Syngenta uses pesticides on Kauai that are banned in their home country of Switzerland. Syngenta sued Kauai County rather than simply comply with the disclosure and buffer zone requirements of 2491, Syngenta who has polluted more drinking water systems in the world than any other company of its kind – now has one of their own sitting on the Kauai County Council and Alan Parachini thinks this is all something we should celebrate.

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It is time to visit the governor.

The much awaited 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision regarding Ordinance 960 was released this morning and while there are positive spots within the decision, the short answer is we lost.

This means that though State government has failed miserably enforcing even the modest regulations that do exist, County governments in Hawaii are prohibited by law from stepping forward to protect their citizens from pesticide exposure caused by Syngenta, Dupont Pioneer, Dow Chemical, BASF, Monsanto and other heavy users of Restricted Use Pesticides.

The good news is that as a result of our communities work in passing Kauai County’s Bill 2491 which became Ordinance 960 significant benefits have accrued:

There is far more public disclosure of pesticide use by the chemical industry today than there was 3 years ago. While the status quo is still woefully inadequate, the community today has far more access to disclosure information than previously available.

The companies no longer plant their GE experimental test fields directly next to schools, hospitals, homes and other sensitive areas. Consequently, residents living in these areas are now likely exposed to far less pesticide exposure than occurred prior to Bill 2491.

The County has reaped hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid property taxes owed by these companies. The net effect is that the approximately $220,000 cost to the County for defending the measure has been more than offset by the companies themselves. The discovery of these unpaid taxes came as a direct result of the investigation leading up to the introduction of Bill 2491.

Syngenta – which is applying pesticides on Kauai’s west side that are banned in their home country of Switzerland – is presently under federal investigation by the Environmental Protection Agency for failing to protect its field workers who were hospitalized for exposure to chlorpyrifos.

The State Legislature has appropriated $500,000 to support the implementation of the Joint Fact Finding Group recommendations, which largely reflected the provisions contained within Bill 2491, Ordinance 960.

Syngenta and Dupont have both announced a significant reduction in the amount of land utilized by the GE test crops and consequently there will be significantly less pesticides being used by these companies.

All of the above are a reality because of the work and effort put into Bill 2491. So while the court decision was disappointing, the net results were well worth the effort.

But clearly the challenge of protecting our community against the environmental harms imposed upon us by these large chemical companies has not gone away. The agrochemical industry may in fact become even more emboldened by their perceived win in court and by the election results, both locally and nationally.

You can be sure there were “high fives” all around the headquarters of Syngenta, Dupont and Dow’s west side headquarters when their Council slate, including an employee of Syngenta itself was recently elected to the Kauai County Council. Knowing that a Trump administrations EPA appointments will also likely be tremendously favorable to them, the chemical companies can now rest assured knowing there will be no increased regulation nor even close scrutiny coming out of Kauai County nor the Federal government.

Given the conclusion by the court plus the local and national election results – our attention must now be focused on the State Legislature and Governor David Ige.

The science is clear. The pesticides and chemicals used by these companies are dangerous; harm is occurring to health and the environment. The degree of harm as a result of both short term and long term exposure has not been determined and these companies will do anything in their power to prevent full disclosure which would then allow the appropriate studies and testing to occur.

The Joint Fact Finding Group which was sponsored by both the State and the County after extended discussions and review of existing research, issued comprehensive recommendations intended to help move us move forward, yet the State continues to remain silent and do nothing.

The next step is up to us. For starters, I encourage all to contact Governor Ige directly at808-586-0034 and request that he utilize his executive authority immediately to implement the Joint Fact Finding Group’s recommendations. If you prefer email go here: http://governor.hawaii.gov/contact-us/contact-the-governor/

Next, join us at HAPA http://www.hapahi.org and/or at The People’s Congress http://www.peoplescongresshi.org as we enter the next phase in our battle for environmental and social justice.

Imua!

Gary Hooser

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Post Election – thoughts and feelings

Aloha Friends,

Following the disappointing results of Tuesday night, I wanted to write you this brief note, with a more extended message to follow in the coming days. Many of you have asked about the reasons for our loss, and I will attempt as best I can to analyze and report on that question in the coming weeks.

A message similar to the below was posted on Facebook but I understand all of you may not have seen it. In addition, below also include comments I provided to The Garden Island who have inquired as to “how I am feeling”.

I awoke Wednesday morning at peace with the Council election results, but remain very unsettled by the national situation.

It has been an honor and privilege to serve on the Kauai County Council.  

We ran an incredibly vigorous campaign and I am in awe and deep gratitude to those of you who helped and supported that effort.

My message at the moment is one of gratitude to all of those who have helped me over the past few months. You know who you are.

From the bottom of my heart I thank you for all you have done in support of me and the campaign. I promise you that my commitment, actions and efforts in the future will continue to be focused on helping to make our world a better place.

During the years I have spent campaigning for public office I have lost 4 elections while winning 6, serving so far a net total of 16 years in elective office (including both the Kauai County Council and the Hawaii State Senate).  

The process is such that you give the campaign 110%, the people vote and decide, and then you move forward with the decision made by the voters.  

As the results came in on Tuesday evening, the thoughts that were at the top of my mind were primarily those of not wanting to disappoint or let others down who have worked so very hard to support me and the campaign.  I know and understand that for me personally there are many paths to service and when one door shuts, another always opens

Our island and our State continues to face many challenges and I am committed to remaining engaged in the efforts to resolve them.  My initial plan is to expand my work with the many existing groups and various advocacy organizations and then to move forward in support of independent community based solutions.  

Preserving and expanding the hard won gains in the area of environmental and health protections will remain a top priority.

As I enter the prime of my life, I am excited and somewhat anxious to choose that new path and cross through that new door that awaits me. My goal and hope to all of you who are part of my life and who have been part of this incredible journey, is that we remain connected and continue to work together in our common quest to improve and protect our planet and community.

Imua!

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3 hours left – There are still thousands of our friends who have not yet voted

The voting will end in approximately 3 hours and our poll watchers are telling us there are still thousands of our friends and neighbors who have not yet voted.

These are folks who share our core values but who for whatever reason have not yet made it to the voting booth. They have marched with us, signed our petitions and belong to organizations that put progressive values and environmental protection first.

But yet far too many of these friends have not yet showed up to vote.

The good news is there is still time but we must act now during these next few hours to locate these friends and encourage/convince them to vote today. If the federal election has turned them off, please remind them the importance of our local elections.

Please look into your address book and networks and help search out and find those of our friends who have not yet voted and encourage them to do so. Please help them with transportation if that is needed and do your best to impress upon them the importance of exercising this important responsibility – especially at the local level.

This election will be very, very close and a handful of votes will determine the winners.

Please join us tonight at the HQ starting at 6:30pm to await the election results. This is “pot luck” and family and friends are welcome! The first returns could be announced as early as 7pm but it is likely to be later with the final election results likely not known until 10pm or so.

Thank you for helping me push just a little bit more these last few hours. We have a winning plan and strategy, but need your help now to go this last few feet to the finish.

Imua!

Gary Hooser

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Campaign funding status plus 7 day “on the ground” strategy to win

Aloha Friends,

We did it! Mahalo to the over 100 generous donors who contributed from $10 to $1,000 per person and allowed us to meet our goal! As a result we were able to produce and mail our final GOTV mailer to over 10,000 voting households on Kauai. This is a YUGE part of our “final 7 day strategy to win” that begins today!

In general our fundraising efforts have been strong, enabling us to run a full throttle campaign via mail, radio, newspaper and social media. We have backed up our aggressive paid media campaign with island-wide door-to-door canvassing. We have knocked on doors in Hanalei, Kilauea, Anahola, Kapaa, Wailua, Hanamaulu, Lihue, Puhi, Koloa, Kalaheo, Hanapepe and Kekaha. The few neighborhoods we have yet to visit in person, we hope to cover in the coming few days.

Though we have not gotten to every single house we have knocked on thousands of doors and met with and listened to local residents from all walks of life representing all demographics.

Every morning in various communities around the island, I have been greeting the morning commuters as the sun comes up. In addition our team has attended countless events and participated in many activities all around Kauai.

Now, we are 7 days out and it is truly crunch time. While the number of financial contributors exceed 400 individual local residents, our goal now is to enroll a similar number to help “on the ground” during this crucial final week. The money part is done and I thank you all who have stepped up to help in this area for that very generous support.

Now it is time to close out the campaign the ole fashion way, on the ground – canvassing door-to-door, phone banking and holding signs at key locations.

If you are available and interested in helping “hands on” please join us at HQ TONIGHT, Tuesday November 1 at 6pm for our FINAL Campaign Meeting. Any and all who want to actively help during this final all important week are welcome and encouraged to attend. Pot luck if you can.

The Campaign HQ is located at the end of Pouli Road directly next to Foodland in Kapaa. Look for the Hooser Signs!

On Friday November 4th, we are “SignHolding” from 4pm until 6pm along the highway @ Kauai Community College – Our goal is to make this final sign holding event our biggest ever so please spread the word and bring friends and family.

Saturday November 5th, “First Saturday in Kapaa” – We need volunteers to wear Hooser t-shirt’s and Hooser cap’s, circulate in the Kapaa business strip and enjoy themselves (while increasing Hooser name visibility). Free shirts and caps are available @ HQ and at our table in Kapaa Saturday night (while supplies last).

Saturday and Sunday November 5th and 6th we will be canvassing in two shifts, morning from 8:30am until 11:30am and the afternoon from 1pm until 3:30pm. Email me for meeting locations.

Tuesday November 8th – 8:30am – 5pm PHONE BANKING AT HQ, Plus sign holding (8:30am – 11:30am minimum or all day if you can).

Fellowship to follow at HQ while we await the election returns (pot luck)!

Please accept my apology if this email is a bit “rough” as I am scrambling to get it out while juggling a multitude of other tasks. Please also know that I am aware that many people on this email list live on different islands and even in different parts of the world. I am assuming in general that most of you are supportive and somewhat interested in the campaign…and know that it will all be over with soon.

Imua! gh

http://www.garyhooser.com

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Urgent: At this specific moment in time I need to request your help, one last time.

Aloha Friends,

Today will be the final time I ask you to help with a donation to our campaign.

While we have largely been on track with our fundraising, today with only two weeks remaining until Election Day of November 8th I need to make one final ask.

We need to raise $4,310.41 today in order to order the printing and mailing of our final campaign “Get Out The Vote” (GOTV) post card. This is a critical component of our campaign strategy and we must order and pay for this piece today so that it is mailed on Friday.

Please help if you can by going online today and contribute at: https://garyhooser.com/donate-now/

If you prefer to mail a check please send to: Friends of Gary Hooser, 5685 Ohelo Road, Kapaa, Hawaii 96746.

Receiving funds online today if possible is our urgent priority however checks mailed in the very near future are also welcome and needed to fund this all important final two weeks activity.

No contribution is too small and the maximum allowed by law is $2,000 per individual. No corporate donations please.

So many have already given so much that it pains me to ask again. However this is a critically important piece of our campaign strategy and we must get it produced and mailed immediately.

We have been working very hard and will continue our 24/7 effort all the way through until the polls close on November 8th. There is every reason to believe we can and will win strong but I need to ask today for your extra effort and help to ensure that happens. We are leaving no stone unturned and this final direct mail GOTV piece is key.

Mahalo to all who have already been so generous.

Sincerely,

Gary Hooser
http://www.garyhooser.com

NOTE: We continue to need people to help with phone banking and to help “hold signs”, especially on election day November 8th. If you can help with theres activities and are not on our separate “volunteer email list”, please email me and I will make sure you are informed as to how to help.

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What campaigning 24/7 looks like – 17 days out.

My eyes open at around 4:15am on most mornings. My phone alarm which I set religiously rarely ever actually rings as my internal clock advances earlier and earlier every day.

I stumble into the kitchen, grind the beans and prepare the coffee (black and strong), part of which is consumed while taking a hot shower. I then sit in my regular spot at the kitchen table and catch up on the news and the never-ending stream of email. Cameron who is helping me now daily, arrives at 5:45am and we depart to “hold signs” and greet the morning commuters in various parts of the island. Cameron drives so I can continue working on my phone, reviewing and responding to various email.

We “hold signs”, wave and throw more than a few “shaka’s” as what seems like an endless flow of cars stream by until about 7:45am. It may seem strange perhaps to some, but I thoroughly enjoy this early morning ritual. In a peculiar way it offers me a time of quiet solitude even in the midst of the constant sound of the traffic and occasional honking. The folks in the cars mostly smile, wave back or return the shaka in affirmation of the brief contact being made, even as they pass quickly by moving on to unknown destinations and activities. Some of course will turn and look away and a very few sad and sometimes angry individuals will offer a less than positive hand gesture.

8am until 10am or so is usually reserved for “meetings” which often means more coffee as I grab quality time with friends/associates/constituents in the community at coffee shops around the island, reviewing issues that may be impacting them personally or perhaps just catching up and reconnecting. Impacting the lives of regular people in a positive way and responding to the needs of my community is where the rubber meets the road for me, and I love it.

Before, after and in-between the face-to-face meetings I am on the phone, either talking, texting or sending out email. At 10:30 or so, I will head to the campaign HQ to huddle with Cameron and meet with campaign volunteers – moving forward various aspects of the campaign including the final media push, ordering last minute supplies, paying bills, raising money for which to use to pay those bills, and reaching out to people in the community who have offered to help.

In between it all I will text or call my children, check on Maximus Aurelius, double check with Claudette and unless the time of day has already gotten “too late”, I will perhaps give my mother in Georgia a call. My new grandson Rixon is just a month old. I don’t see him often enough and have convinced myself that he does not miss grandpa quite yet and so I can make up for the infrequent visits now by spoiling him rotten once the campaign is over.

Around 2pm I will remember I have had neither breakfast nor lunch and that coffee was not going to sustain me much further. To fuel the balance of the day I will grab whatever consumable food-like substance is closest at hand. Sometimes it is organic and green, sometimes a bento, sometimes a peanut butter sandwich and often simply trail mix (without the M&M’s). I will chase this down with 2000 mg’s of vitamin C, maybe a multivitamin and copious amounts of H2O.

Depending on the day, late afternoons are often spent canvassing neighborhoods and putting up signs and banners. Our goal is to knock on doors and place our signs in every single town and community on Kauai before November 8th and we are on track to reach that goal. Residents are often pleasantly surprised to see it is actually the candidate on their doorstep and some will take a moment or two to share their thoughts about the County and its challenges.

On many days there are functions and events and often multiple commitments that conflict but must be accommodated. Sometimes this means attending one function at perhaps the Kauai Marriott and then leaving early to attend another at Princeville or in Waimea. While these functions are primarily social in nature (community fundraisers and annual gala celebrations), the hosting organization and others in attendance view the presence of candidates as an indicator of respect and interest for their particular cause. These events offer a unique look into each and every segment of our culture and community, and the food experience and wide variety of culinary delights available at these functions is awesome (but sometimes tough on the waist-line)

On Saturdays and now even on Sundays we also canvass all day in one neighborhood or another. Walking door-to-door and speaking directly with people in the community is without a doubt the most valuable activity a candidate can participate in. Talking with people one-on-one about the issues that impact them most directly is a key part of staying connected to the real world that lives outside the political bubble many in government reside in.

There is one fundamental rule of serving in public office:
“No matter how smart you are, no matter how hard you work and no matter how good you are in your heart – you cannot serve in public office unless you can get elected.”

I love the work that I do and would like to keep doing it. And though arduous and stressful at times, I love the campaign as well.

Campaigning for election is an important part of the process that prepares candidates for the job of actual serving in elective office. Today, I feel more prepared than ever. I know also that the coming 2 years of service will for me be the most productive and fruitful of my entire time in public service I am committed to this and you have my word on it.

Imua!

Gary Hooser

P.S. YES – Our campaign still needs additional funds to pay for our final, final push to win on November 8th. If you can help, please contribute TODAY if you can. No amount is too small and the maximum allowable by law is $2,000 per person. You can give online at http://garyhooser.com/donate-now/ or via mail to Friends of Gary Hooser, 5685 Ohelo Road, Kapaa HI. 96746. We also continue to need volunteers to assist with canvassing, phone-banking and “holding signs” – please sign up at http://www.garyhooser.com to volunteer!

Campaign Schedule

TODAY – Friday October 21st 4pm until 6pm – Holding Signs in front of the Lihue Airport – Free t-shirts and signs!

Sunday October 23rd 6pm until 8pm – Reggae 4 Re-election “Get Up, Stand Up! Rise Up for Kauai!” Church of the Pacific in Princeville – Free Event! Music by Burning Bush and Friends!
https://www.facebook.com/events/1847525278817214/

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