Mayor and Kobayashi tout endorsements
Mayor Mufi Hannemann and his best-known contender, City Councilwoman Ann Kobayashi, announced endorsements from high-profile organizations as the primary election approaches for mayor in less than three weeks.
Hannemann leads with the most endorsements of the mayoral candidates, primarily from longtime union support, with the addition yesterday from Hawaii Government Employees Association and United Public Workers.
"Four years ago, our city needed a mayor that was going to put behind all the talk ... take action and not run away and do sustainability talks all across the country," said Randy Perreira, HGEA executive director, his criticism referring to former Mayor Jeremy Harris. "The mayor (Hannemann) has proven to be a man of action, someone we can count on."
Meanwhile, Kobayashi received praise from the Hawaii chapter of the Sierra Club, an organization that has clashed with Hannemann several times in the past.
The group's executive committee member Gary Gill, also a former city councilman, said in a news release, "Ann Kobayashi is our choice for a more sustainable Oahu. Ann brings vision and a collaborative approach to solve the tough problems we face with Oahu's environment."
The Sierra Club criticized Hannemann on several environmental moves by the city, saying he was reluctant to implement islandwide curbside recycling, which Hannemann refutes.
Over the past year, Kobayashi introduced several environmental measures, including one to ban big businesses from passing out nonbiodegradable plastic bags. That measure has been stalled in the City Council.