Math doesn’t add up on repavement of runway

I don’t quite get it. According to a Maui News story of June 5, Kahului Airport received $6 million from the state to repave a portion of its main runway. A whopping $1.25 million has been slated for environmental impact statement studies. The construction of the runway repair was to start early next year and will take 90 days to complete, yet the EIS would take 18 to 24 months to conduct such a study.

The math doesn’t seem quite right. The runway repair would have long been completed even before the scientist had a chance to get going. If that’s the case, why bother with an EIS, just put the $1.25 million toward adding another inch of concrete to the runway.

The amount of $1.25 million for an environmental impact statement seems totally blown out of proportion. Even if spread over 24 months and just assuming a generous annual salary of $100,000 per person involved in the study, it would keep six full-time people busy for two full years.

I’ve heard of featherbedding, but this is ridiculous.

According to the story, the runway was originally built in 1942 and, as far as I can tell, the environment around it hasn’t changed much since then. Only Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. and a few mongooses might object to some dust, but I am sure it wouldn’t be any worse than the occasional smoke from burning sugar cane.

Wolfgang Bayer