Honolulu City Council backs off proposal to increase Handi-Van f - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Honolulu City Council backs off proposal to increase Handi-Van fees

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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Handi-Van users in Honolulu were among those who got a repreive from potential tax increases by the City Council on Thursday, though some fear it may only be temporary. 

Mayor Kirk Caldwell had previously proposed increases in Handi-Van rates as part of an overall effort to balance the city's budget, but impassioned testimony from riders prompted the council's budget committee to back off – for now.

"We did let them know if we want to continue the services, especially if they wanted enhance services, that the rates will have to be raised at some point, certainly by next year," said Councilman Joey Manahan. 

The budget committee also backed off a potential increase in hotel and resort property taxes after hearing from industry lobbyists. 

Manahan, though, says its likely those taxes may also go up, depending on how funding for the city's rail project works out.

The committee did recommend higher parking rates, a bus fare increase, higher vehicle weight taxes and higher taxes on high-end investment homes as ways to increase city revenue.

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