I read with interest the 11 proposed charter amendments in the "Know How to Vote" guide recently mailed to Maui County voters. I'd like to compliment the Charter Commission on creating a simple-to-read pamphlet, and thank the commission for its efforts.
Unfortunately, I am unable to determine how to vote on the proposed amendments because several important pieces of information are missing, such as the projected fiscal impact of each of the proposed amendments and which, if any, prominent groups or individuals support and oppose each proposal.
In future years, the commission might consider including a paragraph from each side arguing for or against the amendment, much like a mini-debate in print.
In another example of too little information, proposed Amendment No. 8 would add to the powers, duties and functions of the director of the Department of Environmental Management and "guide efforts to optimize opportunities for environmental, natural resource protection, sustainability, conservation, and restoration." What, in practical terms, does this mean? How would it compliment or interfere with current efforts being carried out by the Department of Planning?
Such additions would greatly assist Maui County's citizens to make better-informed decisions on important proposed charter amendments.
I sincerely hope the League of Women Voters or one of our island publications sees fit to publish an analysis of the proposed amendments before I vote. Otherwise none of the amendments will get my vote, and that would be a shame.