Senate Committee Votes Against Peter Young

Russell Kokobun
Russell Kokobun
Peter Young
Peter Young

HONOLULU (KHNL) -  After a record 5 days of hearings, a key senate committee recommends, Peter Young should not keep his job as head of the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources.

The 4-to-1 vote came as no surprise to Peter Young, who remains encouraged and humbled with what he calls, overwhelming public support. More than 500 people provided testimony during his confirmation hearings.

"95% of the testimony was in support, and we're hoping and expecting that the full senate will be evaluating that overall testimony in their deliberations," said Peter Young of DLNR.

Republican senator Sam Slom was the only one voting for Young. The four others re-iterated the reasons why they want him out.

"Lack of accountability, mismanagement, and the lack of self-initiative to address problems and prevent future problems from occurring" said Sen. Russell Kokubun.

Among Young's supporters is Governor Linda Lingle who remains optimistic but is disappointed with the hearing process.

"It was as if the four members of the committee voting against Peter had made up their minds in advance and nothing was going to change their minds no matter how much positive testimony they received" said Lingle.

Some Native Hawaiian groups who called for Young's resignation two years ago are now in favor of his reconfirmation. Other Hawaiians who oppose it are worried about protecting burial sites.

Young will likely face a final vote from the full senate later this week.