Star-Bulletin Primary Election Guide 2004


Kapolei-Ford Isle
link stirs interest in race

Council candidates

The candidates running for the open City Council District I seat say residents recite the same mantra: traffic, traffic and more traffic.

"Everyone is saying we need to find solutions," said candidate Todd Apo.

The district that runs from Ewa to the Waianae Coast does not have an incumbent because Councilman Mike Gabbard is not running for re-election. He instead is challenging incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Ed Case for the 2nd Congressional District seat. The Council District candidates are Apo, Shane Peters, Patty Teruya, Cynthia Rezentes and James Manaku.

The candidates say that responsible growth and traffic woes are tied in the minds of district residents.

"They need relief and that's the underlying element," said Shane Peters, a former manager of the Capitol's public access room whose political pedigree includes relatives who were former state lawmakers.

He says that a two-tiered approach needs to be done, first with short-term lower cost traffic and infrastructure improvements -- lane widenings, fixing potholes, beefing up the bus -- while working toward a long-term solution and funding for rail.

Teruya, a legislative aide to Gabbard, said residents want to see development controlled because the growth is affecting their commute. "We need to look at infrastructure, repairing roads and getting the fastest ways in and out of these areas," said Teruya, who has lived on the Leeward Coast for 27 years and has been a member of the neighborhood board since 1994.

Apo, a Ko Olina Resort executive, said the resort has proposed extending Kapolei Parkway to Ford Island.

"The hope is to use the existing Ford Island bridge to connect to Kamehameha Highway and Nimitz," Apo said. "It's creating a new access point out of the West Oahu region."

Manaku could not be reached for comment, and Rezentes was ill.

Meanwhile, two incumbents face challengers.

Councilman Romy Cachola is being challenged by native Salt Lake resident and pilot Rocky Ricarte in Council District VII, which runs from Kalihi to Halawa. Ricarte said part of the reason he is running is that he does not like seeing incumbents get a free ride, and he believes voters need a choice.

Councilwoman Barbara Marshall has opposition from Merrily "Leigh" Prentiss and Richard MacPherson.

A candidate can win in the special primary election if they garner 50 percent plus one vote. If no one gets that, the top two finishers in the nonpartisan race move on to a runoff in the general election.

Council members Ann Kobayashi and Nestor Garcia have no challengers and need only one vote in the primary to win a four-year term.

State Office of Elections



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