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Letters for Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Identifying COVID clusters critical

I just don’t understand why in each and every announcement of COVID cases on Kaua‘i “clusters” are reported but never identified.

To my understanding, a known “active cluster” means a group or place where people gather that the public would be better off avoiding.

If this information is being kept secret to protect the identity of the group, establishment, or place of worship, I believe it would better serve the greater good of Kauai’s residents and visitors to know who, what, and where to avoid. Once a “cluster” named gets disinfected and is again safe, an article should be printed inviting the public back.

It is also my opinion that those who tested positive but then disappeared do not deserve to remain anonymous. An article in the paper need not state that the named individuals are infected, just that they are being sought for information. This could even be a small announcement on a different page in order to respect HIPAA rules. Hopefully, a reader just may know where they could be found.

Judy Xenofos, Lihu‘e

Roundabouts the answer to better traffic flow

“If the shoe fits, please wear it”

The state and county have spent a lot of money researching, designing, and then finding the solutions to better our traffic situations. One of the best moves they have made is building a roundabout for the purpose of better traffic flow.

I read letters and comments from complainers that the roundabout cause more traffic problems and congestion, so why do they continue to build them?

If I didn’t know better, I might agree. When I drive up to a roundabout, I have to stop because sometimes there is a long line of traffic bumper-to-bumper. The reason behind the long lines is because drivers are showing us they don’t have a clue on how to drive when approaching one. The first clue and the most important reason for the roundabout to be successful is there is no STOP signs only YIELD signs.

Yes, it sounds dangerous, especially with drivers on this island, but yielding is nothing more than a courteous respectful way of making the flow of traffic move as the design of it actually works very well. So, the next time you approach a roundabout, don’t STOP, try entering slow (10 mph) so all drivers can keep moving let drivers enter and let them exit one car at a time not two or three on each others bumpers as typical. If everyone thinks this way you just might be surprised how well it works. After all, history shows roundabouts have been around doing their jobs to move traffic for many decades.

Steve Martin, Wailua Homesteads

Kahale non-answer leaves electorate questioning

Where does Congressman Kai Kahale stand on this important issue? It is not clear to me and we should all wonder.

Last week, I wrote the Congressman asking that he vocally oppose payment of reparations equivalent to $450,000 per person (upwards of $1,000,000 per family) to foreign nationals who illegally entered our country during the previous Administration who were separated from their families. I provided the Congressman a link to this article from the Wall Street Journal titled “U.S. in Talks to Pay Hundreds of Millions to Families Separated at Border” published on Oct. 28.

It seems a Department of Homeland Security attorney involved in the settlement talks complained on a conference call that the payouts could amount to more than some families of 9/11 victims received, one person said. Also, keep in mind that Gold Star families whose family members died in service to this country defending its laws receive $100,000.

So I wrote Congressman Kahale asking him to look into the matter and oppose this proposal if reporting were accurate. His non-response response was no doubt written by a low-level staffer who ignored the question of appropriateness.

Here is what the Congressman said to me:

“Dear Mr. Venardos,

Mahalo for contacting me to express your opposition to comprehensive immigration reform. It is truly an honor to represent you at our nation’s capital and to serve as your Congressman. I am grateful for each and every letter, email, postcard and call I receive. I want you to know that I deeply value your input on this important issue.

I believe we must reform our outdated immigration system, which is currently plagued by backlogs, processing delays and overly complicated policies. This is why I am a cosponsor of the U.S. Citizenship Act, which would create a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, reform the family-based immigration system by keeping families together, promote immigrant and refugee integration and citizenship and support asylum seekers. As the Judiciary Committee starts to deliberate this bill, I will keep your thoughts in mind as I work with my colleagues and the Administration to pass comprehensive immigration reform this Congress.

Mahalo again for contacting me about this important issue. Please reach out to me and my staff at (202) 225-4906 and (808) 746-6220 or visit my website, should you need assistance or would like to express more of your ideas on how we can build a better future for Hawaiʻi. Please also join us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @RepKahele to be the first to know about our work ensuring Hawaiʻi’s priorities are well represented.


Rep. Kai Kahele

Member of Congress”

In my view, we deserve better representation from our elected officials.

My hope is that sanity will prevail. But as one now living on Kaua‘i who has worked in and around DC since 1975, I am skeptical.

John Venardos, Koloa
Source: The Garden Island

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