Elementary school teacher seeks Central Maui 8th House District seat


King Kamehameha III Elementary School teacher and Hawaii State Teachers Association Vice President Justin Hughey has announced his candidacy as a Democrat for the Central Maui 8th House District seat.

He said his aim is to “break the neglect that has plagued our public schools since 1911.”

Other issues include chronic problems with affordable housing, congested highways and too few curbs and sidewalks in urban areas, Hughey said.

Hughey said he was the first “lucky” Maui resident to purchase a truly affordable home in 2010 from Na Hale O Maui, a progressive community land trust. And, the housing shortage has motivated him to run for public office, he said.

“It was such a relief to see my hard-earned money, from working as a teacher by day and waiter by night, actually going towards a three-bedroom home in Wailuku and building equity,” he said. “It was a dream come true!” 

To help others, he said he became a board member of Na Hale O Maui and eventually became vice president of the nonprofit organization.

“We can take the success of NHOM statewide, which could bring even more funding for affordable homes in perpetuity,” he said.

Hughey drives Honoapiilani Highway from Wailuku to Lahaina to school five days a week.

“We need to address the constant bottlenecking of our state roadways,” he said, pointing out that increasing congestion will inevitably result in gridlock. “Infrastructure improvements should come before, not after.”

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