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County Charter amendments all approved

The Maui News

A majority of Maui County voters cast “yes” ballots for proposed Maui County Charter amendments, including one that provides for council members to confirm most directors of county departments.

With all 34 precincts reporting as of 9:50 p.m., the amendment requiring council approval of the mayor’s nominees was approved by 31,764 “yes” votes, or 65.4 percent, compared with 9,964 “no” votes, or 20.5 percent. There were 6,838 blank or spoiled ballots, 14 percent.

The amendment requires council approval of the mayor’s appointments of the managing director and the directors of the departments of finance, public works, parks and recreation, planning, housing and human concerns, transportation and environmental management. Previously, only the mayor’s nominations of corporation counsel, prosecuting attorney and water director needed council approval.

The amendment also allows the council to set, by ordinance, qualifications for department heads.

Other charter amendments approved were:

* Changing the name of the Civil Defense Agency to the Maui County Emergency Management Agency. (Votes for approval 25,247, or 52 percent; against, 16,111 votes, or 33.2 percent.)

* Allowing attorneys within the Office of Council Services, in addition to attorneys in the Department of the Corporation Counsel, to serve as legal advisers to the council and its members; and allowing by a two-thirds vote of council members attorneys within the Office of Council Services to serve as special counsel. (Votes for approval 24,823, or 51.2 percent; against, 14,846 votes, or 30.6 percent.)

* Allowing the charter to be amended to correct clerical errors and to provide consistency within the charter by allowing an individual to withdraw his or her signature from a supplemental petition. (Votes for approval 31,216, or 64.3 percent; against, 8,870 votes, or 18.3 percent.)

* Allowing the county clerk 20 days to review a supplemental petition instead of 10 days. (Votes for approval 25,573, or 52.7 percent; against, 15,050 votes, or 31 percent.)

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