Discord still reigns at City Council
I was very disappointed to read your article on the possible leadership change at the City Council ("Kobayashi heads charge to oust Council chairman," Star-Bulletin, Aug. 6). I had hoped that the new City Council, whose members where elected last November, would turn over a new leaf and try to work cooperatively with the mayor and each other.
Unfortunately, the Council's budget chairwoman, Ann Kobayashi, has seen to it that the Council does everything in its power to oppose the mayor's policies and programs. She also has tried to punish those Council members, such as Gary Okino, who had the common sense to correct her when she was wrong.
Poor planning stranded bus riders at air show
People were encouraged to ride TheBus to the Hickam air show Saturday. Only one bus (No. 19) goes to Hickam and it runs infrequently. I got the 11 a.m. bus from Ala Moana and it was already packed. I heard that all the No.19 buses going to Hickam that day were full.
After the show, hundreds and hundreds of people went to the bus stop on Hickam only to find a long wait for a bus home. Bus riders were left standing in the hot sun with no water, no seats, just frustration.
After waiting for more than 90 minutes, a bus finally came but it was already full. There was a crush to get on it, with an angry bus driver and angry passengers.
Bus officials should have realized that all the people they had taken out to Hickam during the day would need to ride out of Hickam immediately after the show. It's called "planning." All that was needed was a TheBus shuttle to take the people out to Nimitz so they could get the many buses that stop along that road. That shuttle could have kept looping around to get the people to Nimitz.
Alas, it was just another transit mess from an outfit that is cutting service and raising prices with drivers threatening to go on strike! Best bus system? I think not. I think we should just call it "TheBust."
Air Force provided great show for public
The Air Force did itself proud this weekend with its "Welcoming Neighbors and Friends" show at Hickam Air Force Base.
Besides the wonderful performances of the Thunderbirds, the static display was the largest I have ever seen. Every type of modern and retired aircraft was displayed with helpful and professional personnel manning each site. The base facilities and the new tarmac were also top notch. It made me proud to be American.
June Jones' contract shouldn't be a secret
Who is the president of the University of Hawaii: Evan Dobelle or June Jones? Jones' insistence that parts of his contract not be revealed makes it all the more important that the complete contract, and the names of private donors to his salary, be made public ("Raising Cane," July 6). UH autonomy does not mean the public be damned. Dobelle bears ultimate responsibility for how this issue is resolved.
Interisland carriers ask for more, give less
Hawaiian and Aloha airlines have discouraged me from giving them my business. Aloha has closed its popular Hilo ticket office. No longer will we have friendly and efficient service from the incredible Calvin Enoki (whose popularity with generations of customers is the stuff of legends in Hilo).
Hawaiian Airlines is no better. I tried booking a flight online, got the times and date I wanted at a fare of about $140 round trip, then went to confirm and the fare had jumped to $230 round trip! I called Hawaiian, waited on hold for more than 20 minutes, and got an agent who said she could do nothing since the online reservations were in "another department." I canceled my plans.
There are no direct flights from Hilo to Maui on either Aloha or Hawaiian. One has to take two flights through Honolulu and pay a surcharge for the privilege. Direct flights from Hilo to Maui used to take only 35 minutes. Now, including waiting time in Honolulu, the travel time is three hours or more! They are charging more and giving less.
Fortunately, for Hilo residents, there is an alternative. Pacific Wings has direct service on efficient, comfortable nine-passenger planes. Parking is free at the commuter terminals, you only have to arrive 15 minutes before flight time, there is no security check and the round trip is only $130.
The scenery is incredible, the experience is relaxing and casual and the airline employees are very pleasant and friendly. Their schedule allows me to fly direct to Maui, spend the day doing business, and return to Hilo in time for dinner. No hassle. Pacific Wings has my business.
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