VIDEO: Randy Piltz, Mayoral Candidate Profile, Decision 2010 MauiNOW.com
Randy Piltz, 2010 candidate for Maui Mayor, Transcript:
Introduction: Aloha, I’m Randy Piltz, running for Mayor of Maui County. I was born and raised here. My Mom and Dad are from here. Hattie–from the Kukahiko family down in the Kihei/Makena area; and Adolf from the family from the Ulupalakua and Kanaio area. I went to Kamehameha Schools; after that I went to the University of Dayton; after completing the University of Dayton, I went to work for the Montgomery County Sheriff’s office. It was similar to this kind of time that we have right now,
where many people are unemployed and I needed a job so I worked as a Deputy Sheriff for four-and-a-half years. After that, I worked with General Electric Company for six-and-a-half-years. I ended up as a sales engineer and returned to Maui to help my dad with Piltz Electric, a company that was started in 1946. During that time, we rose, and I took over the company. My children helped me in that company. Since then, Piltz Electric has been closed, sadly enough, because my children did not want to be involved, and you could see the economy turning. I was involved mainly, for the past 30 years in construction, and this is my background right now. I do have many, many family and friends in Maui.
Development: What are your thoughts on smart growth and what will you do to prevent urban sprawl? Answer: Growth–there’s several projects that have come online. I was on the State Land Use Commission for the past five years, and one of the ones that comes to mind is Pulelehua, which was a Maui Land & Pine project–there were about 800 homes. Another one that was out there was Olowalu–that just came up recently–and they hired consultants that wanted to do smart growth. We also have another project, Honuaula, that’s been sitting around for almost 20 years–and they’ve instilled smart growth entities. But you know, unless these projects get done, we’re not going to see what smart growth really is. Let me address urban sprawl. GPAC has been going on for three-and-a-half years. The people have stated that that’s what they want–is to control where our people are going to live and where businesses are going to grow. Until that has been accepted, and the community plans have been put together, we’re not going to see where we go. So as your next mayor, I will have to say, let’s see what happens. I know the county council is working on it and these are the kinds of things that we have to look at in how we control where we grow and where we take our urban boundaries.
Permitting: What are your thoughts on the county’s permitting process for B&Bs? Should the approval for B&B’s rest in the hands of council members or the mayor’s appointed planning director? Answer: Addressing B&Bs, When I was on the planning commission for five years, and it’s chairman my last year there, we addressed many of the B&Bs. But the process is just so long that there are many entities out there that want to go through the process, want to comply, but our permitting process is broken. And as your mayor, I will go ahead and look and make sure that our planning director is in line with the way that I feel we should be doing things. Unless we fix the system, and we have a planning director that knows how we want to move along with it–and then I can talk with the county council, and get their cooperation. The biggest thing is getting cooperation within these various organizations. We have to change. We have to get something working better.
Fireworks Ban: Are you in support of or against it? Answer: That one’s really a tough situation, because we have those that believe that that’s part of their culture. Just for recreation, I really don’t see it. At times when we do have dry seasons like we have now, then I don’t think we should have it at all. As far as I’m concerned, It’s got to be a limited process. It can’t be, well it’s the holiday season and this is when we usually do it, and let’s do it. Because if we have a dry situation that we have now, it’s going to endanger life. And my whole thing is that public safety is number one.
Transient accommodations tax: If elected to serve, what would you do to ensure that Maui keeps its share of the Transient Accommodations Tax? Answer: That’s a good one because you know, the mayor has to work with the visitor industry and lobby the legislature. In order to get the money back, that they put into it, and our visitors pay for, unless we go out to the legislature and request release of those funds, we’re never going to see it. I was talking to one of the managers over in Kaanapali and he was saying that because of the situation that we’re in right now, they are providing discounts; and they’re lowering their rates just to get the visitors to come in. And what we get back in our T.A.T. for the whole county of Maui–that one hotel spends more in advertising and discounting. We’re really not getting the money that we put into it. So as your mayor, I will have to go out there and make sure I solicit those people in the legislature to return more of those funds.
Water: What are your plans to improve waste water treatment on Maui and your thoughts about injection wells? Answer: I’m glad you mentioned that because you know right now we have, here in Central Maui, one plant that’s on the ocean. I know they fortified the structure. But, should there be a massive tsunami, we’d be out. So, I would think right now is a good time to plan for –especially with GPAC coming in–that we now look at some smaller plants in the areas of urban growth. And then also, getting funds from the feds, getting funds from the state, so that we can build those, and not wait until there is a disaster. Talking about the injection wells, my last job was over in Kaanapali. The project that I worked on, we couldn’t get county water on the second phase of the project. So we went out and got water from the old Kaanapali Water Company, and that was still not enough. So in order to get landscaping and irrigation, we had to go to the county and request the use of recycled water–R1. Well, our company paid about $3.2 million for that process. That process was supposed to be to improve our plant there, and as far as I know, the funds have not been used. So as your next mayor, I’ll go out and make sure that the funds to take care of these recycled water projects get done. These are the kind of things that we have to address, and until we do that, and we keep injecting these waste water, we’re going to have problems in our oceans. And I only addressed the one section in Lahaina, but there has to be additional funds that are sitting there within our budgets that we can use now to get things going and put people back to work.
Closing thoughts: I’ve been a businessman for the last 30 years and I’m requesting that you support my candidacy. We have our campaign headquarters here in Kahului, but most importantly, I feel that Maui is our home and we love Maui. I was born and raised here, and I want to see it so that our children and our grandchildren have a place to live, to play and to work. And as far as I’m concerned, one of the major things right now, is we can’t afford to raise taxes. If we raise taxes now, when the economy gets better, are we going to lower it? You know, that has not happened. So, as far as I’m concerned, Ke Koho–The Choice, and Randy Piltz is your choice. Mahalo.