One of the first tasks facing Mufi Hannemann, who beat Duke Bainum in November's election, is to finish forming his Cabinet.

Hannemann is focused
on his initiatives

After his inauguration tomorrow,
he will have his plate full

It's a Bible that Mayor-elect Mufi Hannemann has owned since he was a teenager.

The pages are worn; transparent tape holds it together in places.

"It's laced with Scriptural references that mama and daddy passed down to me or (my wife) Gail had shared with me through the years," Hannemann said. "It's something that I hold near and dear because I have all their favorite passages and my passages ... and I've used it."

Hannemann plans to use that Bible in tomorrow's ceremony that will open a new chapter in his life when he is sworn in as the 12th mayor of Honolulu. Kicking off several days of inaugural events, Hannemann, 50, will take the oath of office at Kapolei Hale at noon.

And by the time the word "elect" is erased from his title, Hannemann will already find a full plate, making him an obvious choice for the Star-Bulletin's annual "10 to Watch" in the new year.

In his first days as mayor, Hannemann intends to make good on several campaign promises and try to make a clean break from Mayor Jeremy Harris' administration. He plans to:

» Take an audit-like look at the city's operations and financial status.

» Cancel the contract to do corrective work on the aging Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium.

» Continue his discussions with the United Public Workers union, which endorsed him over opponent Duke Bainum during the election, to break the impasse over curbside recycling to get that program off the ground.

» Reroute newly purchased hybrid diesel-electric buses from its current downtown-to-Waikiki line to outlying areas to "make sure we all enjoy that particular bus." The move also signals a further dismantling of Harris' Bus Rapid Transit and Hannemann's intention to head in another direction for transportation solutions, possibly rail transit and a commuter ferry system.

» Complete the formation of his Cabinet and prepare for City Council confirmation.

"I really believe that it's important in the first part of my administration to do some things that the Harris administration wasn't able to do ... establish some credibility that, hey, this new mayor means what he says, says what he means," Hannemann said. "I'm well aware of the fact that I'm not going to be able to be successful in every one of our initiatives."

Expect less public discourse between Hannemann and labor, the City Council and others with whom Harris had previously beefed publicly. And the honeymoon has already begun.

Council Budget Chairwoman Ann Kobayashi said that following the money trail left from Harris administration spending will be important for the incoming mayor.

"I think the immediate problem is how much money is left and what budget did (the Harris administration) take that money from," said Kobayashi, who supported Hannemann's candidacy.

Kobayashi said that Hannemann will also have to deal with possible tax relief to respond to soaring tax assessments, decide whether a 23 percent increase in sewer fees is in order and possibly look at cutting services to help balance the budget.

"I hope that the new mayor will not be blamed for the financial problems that are left, that he is inheriting," Kobayashi said.


Swearing in

Mufi Hannemann's celebration of children, family and his faith will play a role in the events commemorating his inauguration as Honolulu's next mayor:


Noon: Hannemann will be sworn in at Kapolei Hale. The ceremony is not open to the public, but there will be media coverage. Hannemann's friend, Family Court Judge R. Mark Browning, will administer the oath of office.

12:30-3 p.m.: "Ohana and Keiki Celebration" on the grounds of Kapolei Hale, 1000 Uluohia St. off Kamokila Boulevard. Open to the public. Free refreshments, keiki activities and entertainment.


7-8 a.m.: Inaugural Prayer Service at Kawaiahao Church. Open to the public.


1-2:20 p.m.: Public inauguration at Honolulu Hale. Hannemann will re-take the oath of office in a public ceremony and deliver his inaugural address.

5:30 p.m.: Mayor's Inaugural Gala at the Monarch Room of the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. The event is a fund-raiser, with proceeds going to pay for the inauguration events. It is sold out.

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