Stop Rail Now petition won't make it on November ballot

Todd Apo
Todd Apo
Earle Partington
Earle Partington

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Stop Rail Now's petition fails to make it on the November ballot. Final numbers are in - the City Clerk's office reports the anti-rail group does not have enough signatures. And both the Supreme Court and Circuit Court rejects Stop Rail Now's request to save its ballot measure.

Circuit Court Judge Karl Sakamoto stands his ground.

"The plaintiffs motion for partial reconsideration is denied," said Judge Sakamoto.

The move reinforces his original ruling that Stop Rail Now needs 44,000 signatures to place its question on the November ballot. The anti-rail group argues it only needs 29,500.

"We are not giving up. The voice of the people should not be suffocated by an erroneous interpretation of the law by a circuit court judge," said attorney Earle A. Partington.

The ruling puts a roadblock in Stop Rail Now's petition, which falls short of the required number of valid names.

"Total number of qualified signatures: 35,065," said City Clerk Denise De Costa.

In her final count, De Costa reports:

Out of the 49,472 signatures turned in, she disqualified more than 14,000 of them, largely because the names had registration issues.

11,309 signatures were of people who are not registered or not properly registered.

"These numbers show that if you just count those that were not registered or not properly registered, the petition falls short of the required amount," said Honolulu City Council Vice-Chair Todd Apo.

The Honolulu City Council's rail question will appear on the November ballot instead.

This is the question voters will now see in the general election:

"Shall the power duties and functions of the city, through its director of transportation services include establishment of a steel wheel on steel rail transit system?"

Stop Rail Now says it will still continue its anti-rail education campaign.