Throughout this campaign, my opponent and his supporters have attempted to tag me as “pro-development,” and therefore a bad guy that the voters shouldn’t trust.
Let’s set the record straight. When I worked in the Arakawa administration, the only developments I supported were Jesse Spencer’s Waikapu project and the West Maui Breakers projects, both successful affordable housing projects. I opposed, and testified against the Puunoa project in Lahaina because it was poorly designed and in the wrong location.
My opponents say that I am “pro-development” simply because my campaign has accepted donations from people in the development field. In fact, the far majority the campaign contributions I have received are from ordinary Maui County residents. Of the over 70 people who have contributed to my campaign, contributions from folks in the development industry amount to eight.
My opponents see this election as a referendum on development. I see it very differently. This election for the South Maui Council seat is about restoring common sense and honest discussion of the facts and getting our community back to work while preserving what makes Maui County so special.
The main difference between my opponent and me is that he comes from a rigid ideology that prevents him from seeking balance. I believe that finding balance is the key to our future. We need to balance the need for a vibrant economy with the imperative to protect and enhance our environment.
So if I am “pro” anything, it is for a balanced future. So please vote Don Couch on November 2nd.