My term in office began even before I was officially sworn in, when rains inundated Upcountry Maui and water rushing down the slopes of Haleakalā flooded significant parts of Central and North Kīhei. While I was in the streets, my staff, working on their own before they had even been officially hired, found themselves fielding personal telephone calls, emails and texts seeking answers and asking for help.
While there were understandable tensions created by the situation we all found ourselves in, I commend the county’s Public Works Department for moving quickly to address the damage and cleanup. I also want to thank the Maui County firefighters and police officers who worked with residents whose property had been damaged and their lives uprooted.
It is my intention to work in collaboration with the residents of South Maui to address the root causes of the flooding, and to seek solutions as we move forward. It is clear that this problem has not received the attention that it deserves, and that this must now end. I have been working with South Maui residents and David Goode, the director of the Department of Public Works, to come up with some long-term and near-term solutions.
During the flooding in January, South Maui County Councilman Don Couch and his staff dove into action—even before they were officially hired—fielding personal telephone calls, emails and texts seeking answers and asking for help. “… I commend the county’s Public Works Department for moving quickly to address the damage and cleanup,” said Councilman Couch.
My philosophy as your councilmember will be to remember that this is your council seat and that I am only a temporary tenant with the honor to represent your views. I pledge to meet with all sides on the issues we face, and to do my very best when making decisions that affect our lives and the lives of generations to come.
My principals are clear: to provide a voice for South Maui based on open, transparent and honest government. My door is open to all sides. I will not dismiss an idea simply because it was not mine, or refuse to meet with someone because they hold an opinion I may not share.
I serve as chair of the Council’s Planning Committee and am vice-chair of the General Plan Committee. In addition, I serve as a member of the Budget and Finance Committee; the Economic Development, Agriculture and Recreation Committee, the Infrastructure Management Committee; and the Land Use and the Policy Committees.
Please contact me or Executive Assistants Adrienne Nalette and Susan Clements at (808) 270-7108 or via fax at (808) 270-7119. Email me at email@example.com and contact me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/don.couch.