Honolulu Star-Bulletin - Kokua Line
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Kokua Line

By June Watanabe

Friday, May 7, 1999


‘Precensus’ homes
picked at random

Question: My husband called the Census 2000 number and was told that not all houses are targeted for a precensus survey. But, they could not tell him why and how the houses were chosen. Why just go to certain homes when your main objective is to send forms to each living quarters?

Q: I don't get it. Census workers know what street they are on and our address is on our mailbox or home, so why do they need to talk to me? Also, I don't think it's right for me to give out any kind of information regarding my neighbor's property. Please tell me we aren't going to be harassed.

Answer: The addresses were chosen randomly, by computer, said Robert Asato, head of the U.S. Census Bureau's Honolulu office.

"The purpose of block canvassing is to verify addresses and to get as complete and accurate an address listing as possible so that the questionnaires that are mailed out in mid-March 2000 will go to every housing unit," he said.

Short of going to every household, the 250 precensus surveyors are given census tract lists with certain addresses marked. These are the ones chosen randomly by computer.

There are no names attached to the addresses and the surveyors aren't supposed to even ask you your name, Asato said. "Confidentiality is important."

You don't have to respond, he said, but it would help to ensure that the listings are accurate and that every household will obtain a questionnaire next year. The current canvassing should wrap up by May 12.

Tapa

Q: Why are state workers employed by the stadium allowed to do work for a private concessionaire, ARAMARK, on state time, using state vehicles? I saw workers working with PVC tubing from an ARAMARK trailer and transporting materials in a state vehicle. They're doing work for ARAMARK on company time.

A: After receiving calls from the state Ombudsman's Office and Kokua Line, Aloha Stadium officials investigated and concluded that nothing improper was done, said stadium engineer Ken Tong.

The one employee involved is a plumber who was on his break at the time you saw him, he said. ARAMARK, which has the contract to provide food at the stadium, had asked for his advice.

"He didn't do any work, but was just advising the concessionaire on what needed to be done," Tong said. "He wasn't doing it on state time."

If ARAMARK "couldn't do the job in-house with the advice our worker had given to them, they were going to go out and get a contractor," Tong said.

Tapa

Mahalo

To the gentleman who stopped to assist us on the H-3 Freeway after we suffered a blowout. I tried using the emergency phone to no avail. We sat for about one hour before someone stopped to help us. In all the excitement, I failed to get his name. He drove a maroon Monte Carlo, license GTY035. We're two very grateful females (one who is wheelchair-bound). Our sincerest thanks to our angel. -- Marylou and Celia L. Wood

Tapa

Mahalo

To Simeon Maka, who pulled me out of the Pali Tunnel when my pickup truck was stalled, and to Mark Coleman, who came to my rescue when it stalled again near Punchbowl on April 19. These two wonderful gentlemen probably prevented an accident from happening. I will forever be grateful. -- Walter Ogino





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