City transit funding bills meet resistance

Jamie Winpenny

HONOLULU — The Oahu Coalition for Affordable and Flexible Transit (OCAFT) is urging the public to attend and testify at two City Council meetings this week that will have a significant impact on the future of mass transit in on Oahu.

The organization opposes Bills 39, 40, and 41. In a press release, OCAFT says “Frankly, several of our best minds have been working to decipher this morass of bills, trying to boil our testimony down to some simple statements, which is impossible. Simply put, our message is vote no on Bills 39, 40 and 41 until the public has a better understanding of their implications.”

The group’s major concern is that the bills, if passed, would add a massive debt load to taxpayers by paying for transit with general obligation bonds and a transfer of $176 million from the General Fund. OCFTC also cites an ever-shrinking commitment of Federal funds for Honolulu mass transit as cause for alarm in taxpayers.

With the current paucity of available funds, and the woeful opacity of the funding process for mass transit, OCAFT is urging the public to testify at the meetings in order to stall the bills “until the public has a better understanding of their implications.”

Monday, May 2
Honolulu Hale
Conference Room
2:30 p.m.

Wednesday, May 4
Honolulu Hale
Conference Room
9:00 a.m.