Thursday, August 30, 2007

Stop Superferry Service to Kauai Until Legal Matters Resolved

That's the main message from Rep. Hermina Morita who sent a letter today to Transportation Director Barry Fukunaga requesting that the state stop all Hawaii Superferry service to Kauai pursuant to last week's Supreme Court decision that an environment assessment is required.

"The use of the State's harbor facilities, including Nawiliwili Harbor, is not appropriate at this time," wrote Morita. "Moreover until all legal matters are resolved or there is further guidance from the Hawaii Supreme Court, the DOT needs to respect the rule of the law."

Morita is critical of the DOT and claims it disregarded the law when it approved the Superferry's operations without requiring an envrionmental review. She highlighted the fact that the environmental review was requested by the Hawaii, Maui and Kauai County Councils, and that the department's avoidance of the process "was done for political expediency not respect for the law and brings us to this juncture."

Morita goes on to state that a full environmental review and full disclosure of the Superferry's operations should have been done at the conception of the business. She emphasized that, "Federal, state and county police or military resources and power should not be used to enforce bad political decisions."
Copies of the letter were sent to Governor Lingle, Mayor Baptiste, the Kauai County Council and the US Coast Guard.
Photo: Kauai protesters greet Hawaii Superferry (AP)

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