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Hawai`i Councilmember, District 2

Duties: The County Council is the legislative branch of the County. Council is responsible for passing the laws that govern the county, as enacted by ordinance and written in the Hawaii County Code.How Elected: The County Council consists of nine members elected from geographical districts. Members are elected on a non-partisan basis. A Councilmember must be a qualified resident and registered voter of the district from which the person is to be elected for at least 90 days immediately preceding the primary election. A candidate who receives the majority of votes cast (i.e., more than fifty percent excluding blank and overvotes) or is unopposed for the office in the first special election, held in conjunction with the primary election, is deemed elected. The contest will not appear in the second special election, held in conjunction with the general election. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast for the office in the first special election, the two (2) candidates, receiving the most votes in the first special election, will appear on the second special election ballot. The candidate who receives the highest number of votes at the second special election is deemed elected (Hawaii County Charter, Article XIII, Section 13-27).Term: Two years, limited to a maximum of four consecutive full terms.Base Salary: Councilmember - $70,008; Chairperson - $77,016

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  • Candidate picture

    Maurice GOULDING
    (NS)

  • Candidate picture

    William HALVERSEN
    (NS)

  • Candidate picture

    Jennifer (Jenn) KAGIWADA
    (NS)

  • Candidate picture

    Matthias KUSCH
    (NS)

  • Candidate picture

    Timothy (TK) WEHRSIG
    (NS)

Biographical Information

Please provide a brief Candidate Statement, describing your qualifications and why you are running for this office.

What are your top two goals and how will you achieve them if elected?

What, if any, actions would you work towards in your first 100 days to address the threats facing Hawaii due to climate change?

Education BS in Industrial Technology Management
Military/Community Service Five Years in South Hilo Rotary (Past President), Downtown Hilo & Coastal Cleanups, YWCA (Walk a Mile in Her Shoes), Volcano National Park Invasive Species Removal Volunteering
Campaign Address PO Box 524
Hilo , HI 96721
Campaign Phone 8084370443
Too many politicians have paid little more than lip service to the issues that matter to us, mostly because the issues are too complex for them and they work part time. I am a endlessly persistent and dynamic problem solver, who has an in depth understanding of the many complex issues that our world, island, and district face. I'm an IIT grad, with an intimate understanding of math, science, technology, and history. I'm ready to use my needed skill set to make life better for our residents in every way possible and to prepare our island for the coming obstacles we will face.
We shouldn't focus on just one or two top goals, but I'll play along. 1)Gov. Accountability&Education: I'll post the council's activities weekly, when your testimony may be given, how to do so, and inform you of the next week's agenda. I'll hold monthly town hall meetings and night hours so information can flow in both directions. 2)Affordable Housing: Currently $525/m is what's affordable for a min wage earner in HI, according to HUD. Create new taxes for tourists to fund housing for our residents with rent that will be permanently tied to minimum wage. House the houseless.
Legislation to stop vehicles from idling when in parking lots or drive throughs. Identify which projects from the multimodal plan best accomplish carbon reduction and prioritize them. Install better traffic light sensors and monitoring to reduce traffic jams. No left turns at certain intersections during rush hours. Shipman traffic light to switch to a yield for highway and stop for Shipman traffic when not rush hour. Install EV rapid charging stations at key locations on the island to increase EV usage and purchases. Not all this can be completed in first 100 days, but can get good start.
Campaign Phone 8085909892
Campaign Email billhalversen@gmail.com
Having lived on the Big Island for twenty-two years, I have had many ideas for improvement. Phase one, agriculture. Phase two, manufacturing pharmaceutical drugs. Phase three, a veterinary school. Also, phase 3 to build a medical facility at Hilo High School.
To profit registered voters in District 2. Produce concerts, record them live and sell the DVDs To start up a car insurance company starting at $15 per month.
Nothing. Even if you did away with fossil fuels, you'd still have climate change problems. Cows produce methane gas which contributes even more climate change.
Education BA in Child Development, Sacramento State University; MA in Early Childhood Education, Mills College, Oakland
Military/Community Service Coordinator Hawaii Island Womens March, Democratic Party Precinct District Council Representative, Hilo High School Community Council, Hilo High Parent Teacher Student Association, Hilo Intermediate Band Boosters, Eb DeSilva Parent Teacher Association
Campaign Address PO Box 95
HILO, HI 96721
Campaign Phone (808)238-2886
Campaign Email jennkagiwada@gmail.com
I’m running to ensure Hilo families have a voice in decisions that affect their daily lives. I’m the only candidate who’s worked at the County Council and who’s gone door-to-door for months, hearing directly from Hilo residents and what matters most to them. I have the experience and disposition necessary to work collaboratively with diverse groups and individuals as well as the eight other council members. I’m running because for years I’ve been supporting other women to run for public office and now it is my responsibility to step up and do the hard work for the people of Hilo.
1.Work to reduce the houseless population by supporting local organizations to move folks into permanent supportive housing, and provide mental health and addiction services. I will also encourage the ongoing development of low and moderate income housing. 2.Support making Hilo a more vibrant, inviting and safer place to shop and spend time by creating solutions for trash collection, street/sidewalk cleaning and other family-friendly amenities. By removing outdated restrictions, I want to make it easier for local businesses to thrive and meet Hilo’s needs with their products and services.

I will support the county in its transition away from gas powered vehicles and develop a campaign to encourage bus ridership, especially youth ridership, by setting up school field trips using public transportation and engaging our youth on how to safely use the free bus system, bike share programs and Mass Transit apps. I will support efforts towards food security for our island, including making it easier for new farmers to start food production. Finally, I will take steps towards reducing our carbon emissions in county government and encouraging sustainable behaviors throughout the county.
Education Bachelor of Science, California State University at Chico 1989
Military/Community Service West Hawaii Fisheries Council, EB deSilva PTA & SCC (14 years total), Hilo Bayfront Trails, many conservation volunteer days: Pu'u Wa'awa'a, Kiholo, Hale O lono fishponds, Mauna Kea, Kohala watershed
Campaign Address PO Box 10750
Hilo, HI 96721
Campaign Phone 8089380680
Campaign Email votekusch@gmail.com
I believe in our people. Our workers, our children and our Islands future. With more than 2 decades of leadership in community outreach, and public service; I want to take my experience and put it to work for an even larger impact, a greater good: The people of Hawai'i Island.
I want to continue my work making Downtown Hilo a better place. As the president of Hilo Bayfront Trails, on the taskforce for the Downtown Hilo Business Improvement District and a stakeholder in the Downtown Multimodal Plan, I know Downtown Hilo better than any candidate. Affordable Housing: As a builder, renovator and manager of affordable homes and rentals, I know this arena very well. I know the stakeholders, I'm on the mayors taskforce for permitting and I've put my money where my mouth is: ACTUALLY housing people in affordable homes and rentals. No other candidate has my experience.
1. Make "Complete Streets" a law. This will greatly improve bicycle and pedestrian safety, make our streets significantly more appealing to non-vehicle travel. This will reduce greenhouse gasses, noise pollution and lift our community's health and well-being, along with improve our transportation and recreation equity. 2. Via affordable housing initiatives, the General Plan and incentivizing density at our city cores (like Downtown Hilo), we can address wastewater, transportation and housing all at once via legislation working in concert to meet our climate emergency.
Education Hilo High School, Hawaii Community College,
Campaign Phone 8083333455
Campaign Email Friends@friendsoftk.com
Aloha, I am a native of the Big Island of Hawaii, Born and Raised here. I have lived in District 2 my whole life. During this time I have seen the changes in our community. Not all of it for the best. Crime has risen, and Homelessness is running rampant. I have spent the past 6 years fighting the crime and negative changes. I am a community leader. Through a Facebook group, I created to help fight crime and other social issues has given me a direct line to the community and its concerns. I am running to represent the people of Hawaiʻi!
Public Safety is my number one goal. We should all feel safe in our community. It has gotten to a point people feel unsafe even in their homes. I plan to re-evaluate our look at crime and have REAL conversations about solutions. Work with transitioning programs to see what works and what doesn't.

The second will be programs and activities for our Keikiʻs and Kupunaʻs. With safety at the helm, we need to provide activities for both of these generations. With COVID a lot of these programs were shut down. I look to find innovative ways to restart with this new norm.
I think we need a better recycling program. Before you could recycle almost everything. Now the centers are back to aluminum and certain plastic and glass. The rest fall into our limited landfill. Take a further look at possible toxic companies that have played to play for too long.