How often do you get to see an actual politician explain how counter-productive and useless this legislative session was?Â Not very often, that’s for sure.Â It requires a degree of honesty that (let’s face it) is not exactly plentiful among those with one finger in the prevailing political winds.Â And that’s why, if you want a real rundown of the accomplishments (or lack thereof) of the Hawaii Legislature this year, you definitely want to watch Hawaii Senator Sam Slom’s legislative round-up.Â It’s certainly worth viewing in its entirety, but I’ll hit the highlights for you:
Downsides to this Legislative Session: They balanced the budget only by raising taxes and fees, raided the hurricane relief safety net to try to prop up the teacher’s union and the state school system (which isn’t exactly reaching new heights in education . . . except to hit a national record for shortest school year), and generally handicapped business and enterprise in the Islands.
Accomplishments of this Legislative Session: Feel-good bills about sharks and monk seals.
You know, some people might question a legislative session that only lasts a few months, but I’m starting to be grateful that the window to really foul things up is so small.