Furfaro blocking 2491 vote

SUBHEAD: This is an obvious ploy by Chair Jay Furfaro to make sure the vote cannot take place at the meeting.

By Andy Park on 3 October 2013 on FaceBook -

Image above: Kauai County Council Chair Jay Furfaro official picture for 2012-14. From (http://www.kauai.gov/Portals/0/Council/images/Council%20Chair%20Jay%20Furfaro%20%282012-2014%29.JPG).

As I said last night, the October 8 County Council agenda for the "second reading" of Bill 2491 regulating GMO experiments and open field pesticide tests, not only has nine different 2491 related items but has been scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. and, more importantly, has a 1:00pm. END TIME.  Incidentally, the term "second reading" meaning the "final" vote for or against a bill's passage.

This is an outage. Having an ending time for a meeting is unprecedented and an experienced political insider told me that it's an obvious ploy by Chair Jay Furfaro to make sure the vote cannot take place at the meeting and the vote on the bill will have to be deferred. I can't accurately speculate as to why he has done this (the chair makes the agenda) yet but the obvious one is to block passage of the bill by delaying it.

There is no way all these items plus the expected huge demand for public testimony can be accommodated in five and a half hours- testimony from people who want the moratorium, EIS and ban on open air testing reinstated in the bill. That may not happen but people are entitled to express their outrage at the Yukimura/Nakamura amendment that has stripped the bill of those provisions.

As to public testimony, by council rule people are allowed three minutes to testify AND when everyone has had a chance people are entitled to ANOTHER THREE MINUTES. And they are entitled to this ON EACH AND EVERY AGENDA ITEM.

This rule has the force of law through an long-help Office of Information Practices (OIP- which administers the sunshine law) ruling that while the council can set rules for time of public testimony, they must stick to those rules and cannot change them just for one meeting. I haven't said anything about this until now but if Furfaro is going to play games so can we.

I do plan to try to find out from OIP if there is anything we can do about this scheduling of a meeting with an end time seemingly designed to eliminate the expected demand for public testimony. Don't forget- each person is entitled to six minutes on all nine agenda items- a total of 54 minutes per person. If a couple of hundred people demand their six minutes... well we could be there until 2014.

Contact JayFufaro at:
Council: jfurfaro@kauai.gov
Council Line: (808) 241-4093
Home Phone: (808) 826-9392
Mobile Phone: (808) 652-1550
Fax: (808) 241-6349


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