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Monday, July 27, 1998

Museums are getting lot of (bad) publicity

Museum collections are prominent in the news: Bishop Museum is cutting its collection staff. Iolani Palace had a recent overt disregard of palace curatorial policy and museum procedure. Other museums continue to face major fiscal challenges.

Museum collection management needs to be taken seriously. Collections are the foundation of any museum and require adequate funding and respectful treatment integrated into the museum's budget and policy.

All museum personnel -- including volunteers, staff and "old-timers" -- need to be trained and required to follow appropriate museum practices. Neither one's heredity nor familiarity should overrule the regulations.

Stephanie Lei Fitzpatrick

Kapolei school is triumph of community cooperation

Your July 18 article reported that gubernatorial candidate Linda Lingle is criticizing the expedited process used in building Kapolei Middle School. In 1994, the need for expediting the construction of Kapolei middle and high schools was clear.

I helped to form a community group, which we named the Second City Education Committee. During the 1996 legislative session, I introduced SB 3011 to expedite school construction in Kapolei. The bill passed six legislative committees and was signed into law by Governor Cayetano on June 18, 1996.

Act 284, SLH 1996, authorizes the state Housing Finance Development Corp. (HFDC) to "enter into development agreements with private developers to expedite construction of school facilities within the villages of Kapolei." It allows HFDC to do so in a manner that it "deems appropriate and most efficient for building schools for the Kapolei area."

If not for Makai Village Partnership, Kapolei Middle School would not be opening next year. We were fortunate to have the entire school built in one increment, saving students and the community the disruption of building in numerous phases.

Sen. Brian Kanno
D-20th District

Charter group's hearings are hollow exercises

The Charter Commission is more "shibai" by Mayor Harris. Again, he tries to manipulate the system for his purposes. This time, he is using a citizen process to get what he wants -- city charter amendments that the Council would not go along with.

Lex Brodie, the mayor's campaign chairman, was selected to head the commission. He proclaimed his openness to public input and invited greater public participation at the commission's first press conference.

His sincerity rings hollow. If he is so concerned about the interests of the voters, why are commission meetings held on Thursday afternoons? This would be the best time to hold these meetings only if the goal is to discourage citizen participation.

If the mayor and Charter Commission are serious about involving the public, these meetings should be televised live and repeated throughout the week on Olelo. Even if the public chooses not to participate at this point, these telecasts would lead to a better informed public at the voting booths in November.

Spencer Chang

Double standard applies when Holmes is miffed

I find it somewhat comical that Councilman Steve Holmes is offended when foul odors such as cigarette smoke are aimed at him. Yet when my Aikahi neighbors and I have complained to him over the years about disgusting odors, possible health problems and construction horrors from living near the Kailua Wastewater Treatment Plant, he has pretty much told us that the plant was there first and we should learn to live with it.

He said he was sensitive to the abusive language used by the teen-aged smoker. But when we came to testify at a City Council hearing on additional expansion at the plant, Holmes spoke to some of us in a manner that could be considered pretty rude, if not abusive.

The difference is that we did not resort to a physical response, as Holmes did. We are continuing to work through the system to come to a mutually favorable conclusion.

Nancy Cullen

Fasi the chameleon doesn't deserve support

Frank Fasi is nothing more than a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat masquerading as a Republican. He has changed parties so many times for political expediency that even he doesn't know what he stands for.

His idea on raising prices at the gas pumps to pay insurance for people who scoff at the law is straight out of the Democratic handbook for good politicians -- tax, tax, tax! Maybe the supporters of Fasi can afford him, but I can't.

I have voted for him in the past, but the past is just that. I won't make another stupid mistake.

Maybe Fasi can't stand to see a woman in the office that he has coveted for so many years. Ever wonder about that?

Dick Pickering

A GOP governor could do much hurt to Hawaii

Republican gubernatorial candidate Linda Lingle speaks to one issue only: money. But do we really only equate success with money? What about healthy children? Families? Human services? The environment? In these areas, Lingle's record is either poor or non-existent.

Don't think that, if given four years, the Republicans couldn't do much harm. Each and every one of us would feel the impact of them slashing services for those who need them most. The natural environment would not escape the blow either.

On a managerial level, Lingle doesn't hold the answers to Hawaii's economic woes. Under her leadership, Maui County's debt has more than doubled. And we are thinking of giving her the state?

Judy Abben
Hanamaulu, Kauai

Special education teachers can be trained at Phoenix

Your June 30 article, "Parents seek special education 'master,' " overlooked a resource that can help alleviate Hawaii's critical shortage of special education teachers. Our campus is currently working with the state Department of Education to develop and implement master's degree programs and post-baccalaureate certificate programs in special education to provide teachers with the skills they need to educate these special students.

We hope to launch these special education programs on Oahu and Maui this fall. Maui residents will be able to enroll in the university's new learning center in Wailuku, while Oahu residents can take courses in either downtown Honolulu or Mililani.

Grace Blodgett
Vice President/Campus Director
University of Phoenix-Hawaii

Bishop trustees are going overboard with attorneys


The three majority trustees of the Bishop Estate appear to have finally flipped their lids. Their latest expenditure of estate funds, in what appears to be an effort to vindicate Lokelani Lindsey, is questionable at best. It might even be construed to be a complete lack of regard for the resources of Kamehameha Schools.

How easy they find it to spend our princess' money so freely on their behalf and then assume that this bunch of attorneys they have hired will convince any of us proud Kamehameha graduates and students that we are products of a factory of failures.

I don't think our princess would consider the majority trustees to be "industrious men and women." As a matter of fact, our princess just might join me in saying that these three have maxed out in the lid-flipping department.

Jackie Benham
Kamehameha School for Girls
Class of 1947

Bishop Estate Archive
Inouye is very generous with taxpayer dollars Sen. Dan Inouye "would've liked to see taxpayers' money used" for the World War II memorial. Private funds are not good enough for him, huh? Why don't the people of Hawaii wise up and vote this spendthrift out of office?

Jeffrey Shockey

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