Mayor Kenoi Urges a Respectful Dialogue on Mauna Kea Telescope

Media Release

Hawai’i Island Mayor Billy Kenoi today urged all parties in the debate on the Thirty Meter Telescope to engage in a respectful dialogue as the community works toward a collaborative decision on the project.

“In this time of economic hardship for many County of Hawai’i residents, it is critical that the community pull together to search for a solution that benefits our island and our neighbors,” Mayor Kenoi said. “I know that all of the participants in this discussion sincerely want the best outcome for our community, and we owe it to each other to debate the project in a reasoned, respectful way.”

While the Big Island hosts some of the most sophisticated star-gazing technology in the world, Mayor Kenoi said that until now the youth from the island have had little hope of participating in the science and discovery happening on Mauna Kea.

That will change only when Hawai’i Island students are offered exceptional science and math education at the earliest grades, Mayor Kenoi said. It is critical that any additional projects on the mountain be harnessed to provide the foundation in science education that will allow Hawai’i youngsters to grow up to be the engineers, mathematicians and physicists who make astronomy on the mountain possible.

University of Hawai’i President David McClain recently announced that the TMT would bring a community benefit package of $1 million a year to the Big Island that would help fund children’s education.

“As a parent, I want exciting science education career opportunities for our young people so they can dream big about the future,” Kenoi said. “As a Hawaiian, I believe we can preserve our culture, protect our environment and support astronomy. As your mayor, I hope to facilitate compromise and find common ground.”

One Response

  1. Billy is saying all the right things when it comes to this project.

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