Susan Halas

Susan Halas is a Senior Political Contributor at MAUIWatch. She has followed Hawaii politics since 1976 when she moved to the Valley Isle. She was formerly a staff writer for the Maui News as well as other local print and digital publications.

Gubernatorial Nominee Tupola Finds a Receptive Audience on Maui Visit

“I’m here to change your mind,” said Andria Tupola. The Republican nominee for Hawai`i governor was on Maui on Tuesday and Wednesday meeting with voters, waving signs and visiting schools. The 37-year-old former music teacher who served for four years in the Hawai`i State House, ending as House minority leader, was a come-from-behind winner in her own party’s primary with …

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Maui Women Send a Message in 2018 Primary

The 2018 Maui primary showed that the new strength and viability of women candidates for local and state offices offered more than a few moments of drama and surprise. The surprise finish of the evening was the strong showing by Tasha Kama in the Kahului council seat race, where she topped three-term Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa by a margin of …

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Last minute filers cut it close as nominations close

Every election year has its drama as some candidates wait until the last minute to file their papers. The 2018 primary was no exception, but this year it was more of a comedy as folks with lofty ambitions did and didn’t make the final 4:30 pm deadline on Tues., June 5th. Around 3:30 All was quiet at the office of …

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2017 Review: A Year in the Life of Alan Arakawa

The best thing you could say about Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa in 2017 was that he clearly loved his job and was willing to give it his undivided attention 24/7. Last year, he was ubiquitous, which means he was everywhere all the time. His honor gave new meaning to the scriptural quote, “For where two or three gather in my …

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Unpacking yesterday’s marathon County Council meeting

The Maui County Council meeting of Friday, December 1 continued on Monday, December. 4 was a marathon session with a packed agenda of 51 items. On Friday over 90 Mauians showed up to testify in person on a shopping list of controversial proposals in a comment period which began at 9 in the morning and extended to nearly 7 at …

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Sugimura & Horovitz shine at Liquor Commission as Non-Profits Prevail

The Maui County Liquor Control Commission voted today to revise proposed rules which would have added a host of burdensome requirements that nonprofit organizations would need to meet in order to apply for a one day permit to serve alcohol at fundraising events. That permit is known as a “Class 10 – special license.” Present were Nane Aluli, Leon Bolosan, …

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UPDATE: Liquor Commission Rules Draw Ire of Nonprofits

Update as of 6 p.m. Wednesday, August 9. Following the executive session, the Maui Liquor Commission accepted a motion to review both their own proposed amendments to the rules regulating one-day liquor sales at nonprofit fundraisers and the version submitted by Yuki Lei Suigimura. The material included in these two draft versions will be published for public notice on Sunday …

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Frustration Mounts Over Non-Profit Liquor Rules

Wednesday’s meeting of the Maui County Liquor Commission went into executive session at 12:30 p.m. to consider revising drastic rules which affect the ability of nonprofit organizations to serve alcohol during one-day fundraising events. These “Class 10” special permits are now a topic of urgent concern as non-profits seek to push back against recent rules changes which would require fingerprinting, …

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