KOHALA BLOG: A Kohala point of view by one of its residents: Margaret Wille. In my opinion...

Hi County Inauguration: from Mayor Kenoi to Me Margaret Wille Sworn In: Watch video

Watch videos of the December 3, 2012  Hawaii County Inauguration of the Mayor, Prosecuting Attorney and County Council members.











Na Wahi Pana 'O Waimea nov 18 2012



















































































Senator Daniel Inouye sends me letter of congratulations - with good message "with victory comes responsibility".






And read my parallel statement made at the democratic party grand rally re - with victory comes kuleana - responsibility and accountability. HERE



WHT 11/16 " Wille: Community planners deserve more respect" article worth reading

Read about my support for the Community Development Plans (CDPs) and the CDP Action Committees.   In District 9 there are two: North Kohala CDP Action Committee and South Kohala CDP Action Committee  Read about this issue HERE in West Hawaii Today.

The North and South Kohala CDP Plans were passed as laws back in 2008. I was on the South Kohala CDP Steering Committee that drafted the South Kohala Plan, and which was then enacted into law by the County Council back in November 2008.


These Action Committees are our most local quasi-government entity. The CDP Action committee should be the first level of review and consideration of proposed Capital Improvement Projects (projects proposed for funding) as well as the first level of  review of significant development plans and related local level policies. These committees are not asking to be the final decision-making body of any proposed project, but they do expect to be given the chance to timely comment and to have those comments given serious consideration. These Action Committees should be able to advise any County level government body or department head.

Up until now  the Kenoi administration has been reluctant to give these committees appropriate respect and due consideration. I am however hopeful that the new County Council can work with the Kenoi administration to increase the understanding and appreciation of these District- community level committees. In addition to the North and South Kohala CDP Action Committees, there are functioning Action Committees in Puna and Kona.  Also the Hamakua CDP Plan is underway... and I believe there is one in the making in Ka'u. Each Plan is different with different priorities.  


Jeff Melrose Talks Food Self-sufficiency at Hamakua Third Thursday Thrive Meeting: Commit to Action on His 100 Ways List

The Hamakua community group "Third Thursday Thrive), headed by Mitch Evans, does a presentation and great pot-luck every third Thursday at the Honokaa NHERC facility. The November program was a presentation by Jeff Melrose about his recent Food Sustainability report: "Hawaii County Food Self Sufficiency Baseline Study 2012".  The full report is available HERE

Most importantly Read BELOW his "100 Ways To Increase Food Self-Sufficiency" ...





HERE IS JEFF'S SUMMARY OF THE

"100 Ways to Increase Food Self-Sufficiency":

Review this list and figure out which ones you can routinely support -- if we each commit to change in one or more of these ways (suggest you aim for 10 commitments) we can make a major change in attitude and behavior on this island. Also what other ways can you think of that would help our community reach a higher level of food adequacy and food independence.

 

The following is a list of ideas and actions that were collected during the process of preparing the Hawaiʻi County Food Self-sufficiency Baseline study.  Collectively, they reinforce the fact that Food Self-Sufficiency is everyone’s kuleana.  The challenge goes deeper than just adding farmers and growing local production.  It requires that, as island residents, we intentionally chose to become more reliant on food that have been grown or caught locally. Food Self-sufficiency requires some fundamental rethinking about how island residents spend their time and money.  This is not something that just happens, it takes many hands and much creativity.

This is an evolving list, one that everyone should add to

Where are the sweet spots?

Which ones have a cascading effect on other actions?

Which small actions can lead to bigger outcomes? 

Consumers

·       Learn to eat the food products Hawaiʻi already produces

·       Look for, and purchase, locally grown food products in the market place

·       Ask your retailers and restaurants to carry and clearly mark locally produced foods

·       Prioritize “local” over “looks”.  It is what is inside the fruit that counts

·       Adjust buying habits to accommodate local crop seasons

·       Take personal responsibility for food safety; wash and handle food correctly, regardless of where it comes from

·       Learn more about the farmers and ranchers who produce the food you eat

·       Patronize restaurants that highlight the use of local food products and the creative use of Island resources

·       Shop at Farmers Markets for farm fresh produce and new food ideas

·       Increase purchasing of organic products to reduce the use of chemicals and imported fertilizers

·       Look for and support CSA (subscription farming)

 

Institutional Buyers

·       Adjust procurement methods to accommodate local purchasing

·       Develop purchasing patterns to accommodate local seasonality

·       Partner with local producers or groups of producers to help provide a consistent, seasonal supply of local meat and produce

·       Help to develop the market for local staple foods like sweet potato, taro, ʻulu, banana, and coconut

·       Promote “farm to fork” connections in advertising and on the menu

 

Restaurants

·       Utilize local produce and meats in food preparation

·       Continue efforts to promote Farm to Plate cuisine and to highlight the use of local ingredients on menus and in special programs

·       Work with farmers and ranchers to develop sturdy supply networks for consistent, quality products year round

 

Food Retailers

·       Continue efforts to deliver and label local meats and produce

·       Highlight local farmers and ranchers in brand marketing

·       Provide stable markets for local producers and coach to enhance product safety, quality and consistency

·       Promote local food in the marketplace

·       Carry locally produced organic produce

·       Support innovation and new products using local ingredients

·       Offer table tastings in store for local products

·       Place local foods in a central, visible location

 

State Government

·       Develop a Food Self-sufficiency Baseline for the State of Hawaiʻi to help focus efforts and measure progress towards improved Food Self-Sufficiency statewide

·       Continue support of Buy Local campaigns

·       Develop institutional buying practices for State purchasing that encourage the use of fresh Island produce, meat, fish, and eggs

·       Ensure that State-owned agricultural lands are as productive as they can be, with an emphasis on food production where it is feasible.

·       Increase vigilance at harbors and airports to stem the flow of pests and invasive species that undercut local food production

·       Support Hawaiʻi-based food safety initiatives and provide investment incentives and loan programs to help farmers fund best management practices

·       Support programs that mitigate high shipping costs for grains and other inputs that undercut the viability of local poultry, pork, and beef production

·       Develop new irrigation systems, where feasible, and support irrigation improvements on both State and private systems that will result in increased land available for local food production

·       Create a fund for strategic investments aimed at local poultry, dairy, meat, vegetable, and fruit production and processing, including food enterprise incubators, diversified agriculture processing facilities, and small farm improvement funding

·       Support the pursuit of alternative energies that will mitigate the cost of fossil fuels on local agriculture and consumers

·       Explore technologies to produce non-fossil fuel based fertilizers

·       Expand agricultural extension programs aimed at building Hawaiʻi’s  base of  small farmers and  backyard food producers

·       Promote the use of local staple foods including sweet potato, taro, ‘ulu, banana, and coconut

 

County Government

·       Continue financial support for Buy Local campaigns

·       Continue to support community-based initiatives that build local food system capacity

·       Practice Buy Local in County food purchasing

·       Revisit the County’s Real Property Tax policies related to Agricultural land use to insure that public tax incentives for agricultural land use result in actual public benefits and promote local food production where possible

·       Expedite building permits for minor farm structures and water tanks

·       Support affordable housing on or near farms for farmers and farm workers

·       Support layering of agricultural and non-agricultural uses (like agrotourism) on agricultural lands to improve the economic viability of farms and ranches

·       Develop individual strategies to enhance new food production with the Core Lands where farm activities are most active

·       Enable the construction of commercial kitchens that will be available for value-added processing of agricultural products

·       Maintain an agricultural specialist on staff to interface with the agricultural community and to broker support to address local problems and opportunities

·       Research County initiatives and laws across the U.S. that have removed barriers and added incentives to redevelop local food systems

·       Support the pursuit of alternative energies that will mitigate the cost of fossil fuels on local agriculture and consumers

·       Support efforts by farmers, food brokers, wholesalers, and landowners to locate marshalling yards and food packing and processing facilities to serve regional farming needs

·       Create an integrated permitting system that will approve a whole farm plan at one time and allow several years to complete

 

Department of Education

·       Expand institutional buying for local fresh fruits and vegetables for breakfast, lunch, and snack programs

·       Continue to expand support for school gardens as a context for learning about local foods and the practice of agriculture

·       Provide funds to coordinate and expand the role of school gardens and agriculture in the school system

·       Develop a track from high school to the community college that provides future farmers with business skills

·       Implement the federal Wellness Policy mandate for local schools to set goals for improving nutrition and increasing physical activity. 

·       Create a pilot project in one school kitchen on Hawai'i Island to pioneer the use of locally-sourced foods for school lunches and snacks

 

University of Hawaiʻi

·       Conduct research focused on the practical issues of Hawaiʻi food production

·       Work closely with farmers to ensure that practical information is available

·       Develop farmer training curriculum to be delivered near farm communities and in multiple languages

·       Encourage the use of local foods in culinary training programs and publish recipes that support the use of local food products

·       Invigorate 4-H type programming and develop new farm and outreach programs for all ages.

·       Develop an extension service marketing program to build the skills of  agricultural producers in l how to commercially market their food products

·       Support local farms and ranches by incorporating local foods into cafeteria menus and highlighting the local producers whose food is being served

·       Utilize the teaching capacity of the UH Experimental Farm to educate students commercial growers and community members about innovations in home and commercial food production

 

Farmers

·       Participate with other farmers and processors in cooperative efforts to assert farm interests, organize bulk purchasing programs and share marketing and distribution efforts

·       Grow crops that help to replace existing food imports

·       Explore new crops and traditional targeting import replacement and the expansion of local products in the marketplace, including staple foods, animal feed, fertilizer, and biofuel stock crops

·       Be creative – explore new methods and markets

·       Control cost where prudent

·       Diversify the farm revenue stream, plan for year round income and build diverse markets

·       Explore direct sales to consumers as a means to increase farm revenues and reduce costs to local consumers

·       Employ Best Management Practices (BMP’s) to insure that produce is safe and free of pathogens

·       Install alternative energy technologies in farm and processing facilities to reduce dependency on the rising cost of fossil fuels

·       Help to teach new farmers and farm laborers about the business of farming so they can replace the current aging farmer population

·       Utilize available assistance programs to improve farm practices

·       Explore hydroponics

·       Investigate Farm Conservation Programs

 

Ranchers

·       Sustain efforts to increase the availability of grass-fed beef and other meats in the local market place

·       Support local processors and invest in efforts to expand production for local sales of beef, lamb, mutton, and pork

·       Install pasture improvements to enhance forage production and management

·       Improve existing agricultural water sources

·       Install more water storage capacity

·       Utilize financial and technical assistance programs to improve ranch operations.

 

Fishermen

·       Fish Today for Fish Tomorrow.  Practice conservation and teach it to your children

·       Consider fuel cooperative and/or alternative fuel options to reduce costs

·       Expand on-land fish production through aquaponics and hydroponics

·       Participate in public resource protection initiatives like tag and release and catch data collection, to help better understand and monitor local ocean resources

·       Follow existing fishing regulations (DAR regulations: http://Hawaiʻi.gov/dlnr/dar/regulations.html)

 

Food Processors and Distributors

·       Develop sustained relationships with farmers to insure product quality, consistency, and competitive value

·       Brand local products clearly

·       Support efforts to process off-grade produce into new products

·       Work with USDA Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) Schools to provide locally grown, fresh fruits and vegetables for  local school snacks

 

Large Landowners

·       Make it a priority to have food produced on some portion of available land with sufficient lease term and rents to enable sustained farm investment

·       Encourage sustainable farming practices

·       Enable and assist farmers to install farmers improvements that will improve farm productivity and food safety

·       Encourage farmers and ranchers to utilize government programs to improve farming practices

·       Assist in the upkeep of water, roads, and other infrastructure that may be depended on by productive farm lessees

·       Co-invest in new farm infrastructure to support farm growth

·       Assist farmers to improve farm security and reduce farm theft

 

Small Landowners

·       Make it a priority to have some portion of your property planted in fruit trees and household gardens to supplement household consumption

·       Lease or invite others to produce food on lands that are otherwise idle

·       Share surplus production with your neighbors, friends, feeding programs and Food Basket

·       Grow nitrogen-fixing tree and cover crops to nurture the soil

·       Process and preserve surplus foods through pickling, dehydrating, canning, smoking, freezing, or fermenting

 

Parents

·       Commit time regularly to produce some portion of your family’s food consumption through harvesting, gardening, fishing, or hunting, 

·       Practice cooking local foods with your children and  their friends

·       Practice “Buy Local” and teach your children the value the cultural, nutritional, and economic benefits of fresh local food

·       Prepare a family meal weekly using only locally produced foods

·       Get to know your local farmers

·       Encourage school fund raisers to promote local products

·       Volunteer time in your children’s school gardens

·       Increase the amount of food on hand for emergencies

·       Advertise local foods with bumper stickers and t-shirts… then Walk the Talk

 

Children

·       Choose local fresh fruits and vegetables for snacks

·       Learn to prepare local produce and share recipes with friends and family

·       Participate in School Garden programs or ask your school to start one

·       Encourage your family and friends to eat more local, fresh foods

·       Encourage your family to start a vegetable garden, either in the ground or in pots

·       Plant fruit trees in your yard


Photos from the County of Hawaii Democratic Party Grand Rally and My Speech At the Rally

A few photos from the County of Hawaii Democratic Party Grand Rally Held on Election Eve - November 5, 2012 Hilo  (taken by Lisa Andrews -- who was a major force in my campaign) 

AND SEE BELOW FOR MY SPEECH AT THE RALLY:

Photo of Mazie Hirono, Harry Kim, me, Chelsea Yagong:



Russell Rudman and me:




Valerie Poindexter and me:



Malama Solomon, her sister Hulalai, and me:




Harry Kim and me:




The "ABOLISH PLDC" protesters (Public Lands Development Corporation):




Fernando Salas, my keiki campaign manager Jessica Andrews and her friend, and me:






Governor Abercrombie, Jessica Andrews and me






First I was introduced as running for County Council in District 9 (North and South Kohala) with references to my being an attorney in Waimea and with a background in anthropology, education, and law. Also there was mention of my role with regard to the 2012 revision of the County of Hawaii Democratic Party platform (I was the principal author of the document – but with input from many).  

I stand before you as a life long Democrat running for District 9 County Council  AND I INTEND TO WIN THIS RACE.  

To you my fellow Democrats first I ask that we recommit to leadership based on the fundamental democratic principles of open, fair, and collaborative government – and that we not simply govern based on being the majority party. 

Second we need to put an end to plantation style top-down politics – meaning no more “behind closed door”decision-making. It is time for a higher level of government accountability to the public – but in              additionto government accountability we also need community accountability and individual accountability. 

And to my fellow Democrats in state and federal office, as a member of the County Council, I will be there to assist you BUT I will fight to ensure our island ohana has meaningful input in decisions that affect our lives. I will fight for “home rule” and local say-so based on our community development plans – including with respect to energy, agriculture, education, and the use of GMOs or genetically engineered produce or products.  I will help streamline permitting processes - and I am good at that - but streamlining must not be interpreted as permitting erosion of county and local input in government decision-making.

                                    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Let me also say: I intend to win this race in honor of our living treasures like my friends Queenie and Jamie Dowsett and for our children like my keiki campaign manager Jessica Andrews (who is here with us tonight), and for all of our public servants who are no longer with us, like my friends Ann Gomes and Achahn Schulze.  Lastly I want to thank all of you who supported and worked on my campaign. I hope to make you proud.


I WON THE RACE: NOW TIME TO DIG IN THE DIRT

I WON THE ELECTION FOR DISTRICT 9 COUNTY COUNCIL  (NORTH KOHALA AND MOST OF SOUTH KOHALA): WOW!

NOW IT IS TIME TO DIG IN THE DIRT (MEANING GET TO WORK) -- AND DO SO IN A SPIRIT OF ALOHA FOR EVERYONE, 'OHANA (AS ONE FAMILY),  LOKAHI (TOGETHER IN UNITY), ALAKA'I (LEADERSHIP AND INITIATIVE), MALAMA THE 'AINA (TAKE GOOD CARE OF THE LAND), PONO (SEEKING WHAT IS RIGHT), AND MAHALO (BEING GRATEFUL FOR ALL THAT WE HAVE).

HERE ARE MY NOTES FOR MY SPEECH AT THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY'S GRAND RALLY HELD IN HILO NOVEMBER 5TH -THE NIGHT BEFORE ELECTION DAY

 

   First I was introduced as running for County Council in District 9 (North and South Kohala) with references to my being an attorney in Waimea and with a background in anthropology, education, and law. Also there was mention of my role with regard to the 2012 revision of the County of Hawaii Democratic Party platform (I was the principal author of the document – but with input from many). 


  I stand before you as a life long Democrat running for District 9 County Council AND I INTEND TO WIN THIS RACE. 


  To you my fellow Democrats first I ask that we recommit to leadership based on the fundamental democratic principles of open, fair, and collaborative government – and that we not simply govern based on being the majority party.


              Second we need to put an end to plantation style top-down politics – meaning no more “behind closed door” decision-making. It is time for a higher level of government accountability to the public – but in addition to government accountability we also need community accountability and individual accountability.


And to my fellow Democrats in state and federal office, as a member of the County Council, I will be there to assist you BUT I will fight to ensure our island ohana has meaningful input in decisions that affect our lives. I will fight for “home rule” and local say-so based on our community development plans – including with respect to energy, agriculture, education, and the use of GMOs or genetically engineered produce or products.  I will help streamline permitting processes - and I am good at that - but streamlining must not be interpreted as permitting erosion of county and local input in government decision-making.

                                    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Let me also say: I intend to win this race in honor of our living treasures like my friends Queenie and Jamie Dowsett and for our children like my keiki campaign manager Jessica Andrews (who is here with us tonight), and for all of our public servants who are no longer with us, like my friends Ann Gomes and Achahn Schulze.  Lastly I want to thank all of you who supported and worked on my campaign. I hope to make you proud.

 

 

 

NOTE FYI : A copy of the County of Hawaii Democratic Party Platform is attached below .
Syndicate content (C01 _th3me_)