Honolulu, Hawaii

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The consolidated City and County of Honolulu is one of 5 counties in Hawaii, first created in 1907. It is also the official municipal and cultural entity of the combined urban district of Honolulu and the rest of the island of Oahu (including the census-designated places (CDPs) of Kailua, Kaneohe, and [[Kapolei, Hawaii|Kapolei]., each of which represent three of the largest municipal areas in the state of Hawaii). The population of the city and county was 953,207 as of the 2010 U.S. Census[1], making it the eleventh-largest municipality in the United States.



The city of Honolulu, Hawaii will hold a general election for city council on November 4, 2014. The filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in this election was June 3, 2014. A primary took place on August 9, 2014. In races where one candidate received more than %50 of the total votes cast, they won outright. In races where no candidate received more than %50 of the total vote, a run-off election will be held on November 4, 2014. In the District 2 primary, incumbent Ernie Martin defeated Dave Burlew and Dan Hara. In the District 4 primary, Trevor Ozawa and Tommy Waters received the most votes, and will face each other in the general election. In the District 6 primary, Sam Aiona and incumbent Carol Fukunaga received the most votes, and will face each other in the general election. In the District 8 primary, Brandon Elefante and Baybee Hufana-Ablan received the most votes, and will also face each other in the general election.[2][3]

City council

Current members, Honolulu City Council
District Councilmember
1 Kymberly Marcos Pine
2 Ernest Y. Martin
3 Ikaika Anderson
4 Stanley Chang
5 Ann Kobayashi
6 Carol Fukunaga
7 Joey Manahan
8 Breene Harimoto
9 Ron Menor


For FY2012, the city/county of Honolulu has an operating budget of $203 million.

In September 2011, KITV4 did an investigation into the city's involvement in the publication of full-color books designed to educate the public about Honolulu's sewage system.[4] It was revealed that the city spends about $75,000 annually to publish books and pamphlets on this topic. A children's book is included among the publications; the city purchased 7500 of these books from a Hong Kong-based printing company, and KITV4 discovered that as of Sept. 21, 2011, 6000 of the books sit in a warehouse. The cost of those books alone was $10,000, or the rough equivalent of nine annual sewer bills for average-sized homes on Oahu.

Open Records and Complaints

In 2010, the Hawaii Reporter revealed that over 200,000 complaints had been filed within five years in the city/county of Honolulu, most through the Department of Customer Services. The reporter, Malia Zimmerman, requested the public records concerning these complaints, and Honolulu officials replied it would cost $109,970.[5] The state's Office of Information Practices, the agency responsible for overseeing open records law in Hawaii, stated that the fee was not unreasonable and that the reporter should request fewer records. Honolulu Councilmember Ann Kobayashi stated, upon learning what the Dept. of Customer Services planned to charge for the request: "“You are not trying to buy the Customer Service office, you are just trying to see copies of the complaints. Why are they charging citizens for this kind of information – the city should be transparent – the mayor always talks about being transparent.”

The Honolulu City Beat addressed the issue of possible corruption in the Office of Information Practices, especially as it related to the city/county of Honolulu, in July 2011[6] The state of Hawaii's Uniform Information Practices Act can be found online; the Office of Information Practices was created in 1988 to administer UIPA.

Tax Increase Resolution

In September 2011, Honolulu councilmember Tom Berg presented a resolution to be sent to the Hawaii State Legislature urging lawmakers to approve a half percent increase to the local general excise tax to provide funds specifically for roads and bike paths.[7] If the Legislature approves the measure, Berg plans to work to place the issue on the 2012 general election ballot. The city council had already approved $77 million in bonds for roadway improvement; Berg asserts that the area's available roads are not enough to support the increased transportation needs. The council is scheduled to vote on the resolution on September 29.

Website evaluation

Budget Y
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Meetings P
Elected Officials Y
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Administrative Officials Y
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Permits, zoning Y
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Audits Y
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Contracts Y
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Lobbying P
Public Records N
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Local Taxes Y
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Transparency grading process
Main article: Evaluation of Hawaii city websites

This article was most recently evaluated on 7 March 2013.

The good

  • Budget
    • The most current budget is listed.
    • Budgets are archived for 11 years.[8]
  • Contracts
    • Bids and RFPs are posted online.
    • Approved contract statements are provided for vendors.[9]
  • Elected Officials
    • Elected officials are listed with a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[10]
  • Meetings
    • Meeting minutes are archived for 1 year.
    • Meeting agendas are archived for 1 year.
    • A meeting calendar is available and names the times and locations of public meetings.
    • Meeting videos are available.[11][12]
  • Administrative officials
    • Department heads are listed for each department.
    • Contact information for administrative officials is provided including a mailing address, phone number, and personalized email.[13]
  • Audits
    • The most recent audit is posted.
    • Audits dating back to 2004 are available.[14][15]
  • Lobbying information is available.[16]

The bad

  • Meetings
    • Agendas and minutes are not archived for at least three years.
  • Lobbying
  • Public records
    • The public information officer is not identified. Sunshine Review requires a mailing address, phone number and personalized email be listed with this position.
    • Public records request form not provided.
    • Fee schedule for records not provided.

External links