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Kapolei and Ala Moana Rail Transit Construction Referendum (2009)

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Anti rail groups tried to get a Kapolei and Ala Moana Rail Transit Construction Referendum on the ballot in Honolulu County but failed in meeting the requirements.

The county clerk rejected the petition filed by the Stop Rail Now group, the state appeals court has upheld this position which was challenged by the group. The court though noted that the city should amend its charter to be more clear on the requirements to get an issue to vote, which led to the failure of the group. The group thought it had to collect the signatures of 10 percent of voters who voted in the last mayoral election, which was over 35,000 but in actuality they needed 15 percent of those who voted in the last mayoral race which was at least 49,000. The group also called for a special election, though they were not allowed legally to do this within 180 days of a general election. The judge suggested that the charter be re-written so these issues are more clearly addressed and other groups wanting to petition will not have these problems as well. The judge also noted that voters had their say on the rail question when they approved the city director of transportation services to "include establishment of a steel wheel and steel rail transit system." This measure passed with 50.6 percent of voters in favor and 45.7 percent were against this.[1]