Money Whoas - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

April 28, 2006

Money Whoas

What would you do with an extra $600-million? Yes, I know, it’s quite improbable that you will stumble upon this type of windfall in the coming weeks, but that’s what the State has as a budget surplus this year. Certainly, it’s a much nicer issue to face than- say, being $600-million short. But should a piece of this be given back to the state residents? Should something bold be done to strengthen our schools, hasten the rebuilding of dilapidated classrooms, buy a bunch of new books so that Ms. Johnson doesn’t have to wade through yet another sweetbread fundraiser come August? How about a public/private consortium that erects a permanent housing site to help the homeless for up to 120-days, a group whose plight is currently being handled by local religious organizations who are providing temporary housing? Maybe some tax relief for lower income families makes sense, but it might also be wise to take a bunch of this surplus and put it into un-sexy, but vital, infrastructure items. Not a great campaign headline in this election year, but a most efficient use of our money. Think about it…

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