Author Archives: garyhooser

About garyhooser

This blog represents my thoughts as an individual person and does not represent the official position of any organization I may be affiliated with. I presently serve as volunteer President of the Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action (H.A.P.A.) I am the former Vice-Chair of the Democratic Party of Hawaii. In another past life, I was an elected member of the Kauai County Council, a Hawaii State Senator, and Majority Leader, and the Director of Environmental Quality Control for the State of Hawaii - in an even earlier incarnation I was an entrepreneur and small business owner. Yes, I am one of the luckiest guys on the planet. Please visit my website AND sign up for my newsletter (unlike any email newsletter you have ever gotten, of that I am sure) - “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We’re afraid.” “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We will fall!” “Come to the edge.” And they came. And he pushed them. And they flew. - Christopher Logue (b.1926)

Which candidates should be supported?

I’m getting this question fairly frequently and am thinking it’s important to describe the exact criteria I use that impact my personal decisions, as well as the basis for Pono Hawaiʻi Initiative endorsements – and likely most individuals and organizations … Continue reading

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Kauai Councilmembers vote to keep TVR room rates lower and postpone new investments in affordable housing

Words suitable for a family audience cannot express my reaction upon reading Guthrie Scrimgeour’s piece in Sunday’s TGI which started out: “By a 4 – 3 vote, the County Council voted down a measure Friday that would have increased the … Continue reading

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Hawaii’s next governor won’t dance

Be aware when the SuperPacs again bring out their long knives – Kai Kahele will not dance and he clearly can win. Therefore the big money forces will be fighting him tooth and nail, day and night, for the next 90 days. … Continue reading

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Who really deserves credit for the $18 minimum wage increase?

Assuming Governor Ige’s approval, Hawaii’s minimum wage will increase from $10.10 per hour to $12 in October, then phased increases will continue until it reaches $18 in 2028. In addition working families should celebrate the fact that the Earned Income … Continue reading

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Why I was there, why I am here: In 549 words or 3 minutes

I had 3 minutes. The group I was speaking to was a new organization, formed to support candidates whose values supported people and the ʻāina. The question I was asked to speak to was: Why are we here? The question … Continue reading

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Dancing with the devil – money and politics in Hawaiʻi’

I’m hoping Congressman Kai Kahele does in fact run to be Hawaiʻi’s next governor. We should be so lucky. As a former Kauai Councilmember, State Senator, and Majority Leader, I’ve seen lots of politicians come and go. I can say … Continue reading

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Your action paid off. Minimum wage is scheduled!

Update: HB2510 Passed! $18 in 2028, increases tip penalty BUT makes permanent refundable EITC – it’s a win but should not have taken 4 years. Mahalo to all for the emails/calls, for standing in hot sun holding signs. Mahalo Kim … Continue reading

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Minimum wage increase will die today unless….

Minimum wage workers and all Hawaiʻi will lose if HB2510 SD1 is not scheduled today and approved by Monday. Please call and email today House Speaker Scott Saiki and Senate President Ron Kouchi (scroll down for contact info). These two … Continue reading

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Raise The Rage – Time To Take Action On Minimum Wage

Top executives of Hawaii’s largest publicly traded companies received an average pay increase of more than $750,000 in 2021. Their average take-home pay:$4.5 million (HNN). Hawaii legislators themselves will receive a 10% pay raise this coming year, and most if … Continue reading

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A Hard But Easy Ask. Don’t read unless you want to help.

I know we occasionally differ on things ;-), but I’m sure we are mutually disgusted by the conduct of many in elected office. The culture of power and fear that permeate the state capitol is common knowledge among virtually everyone … Continue reading

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