Senator Mazie Hirono on Immigration Reform

Senator Mazie K. Hirono hosted a roundtable discussion with community leaders about how comprehensive immigration reform could impact Hawaii. Among the 20 attendees included immigration law specialists, children’s advocates, philanthropic organizations and immigration justice activists. The meeting was the first of a series of events this week where Hirono will discuss how her work in the Senate impacts Hawaii residents.

Click to sign letter

Click to sign letter

“After listening to these local immigration experts, I was struck by their stories of how central families are to an immigrant’s success,” Hirono remarked after the event. “These professionals and activists serve on the front lines of the issue in Hawaii, helping immigrants wade through the bureaucratic red tape and see firsthand the challenges our immigration system poses for families.”

At the meeting, Hirono listened as participants spoke of their own daily experiences dealing with the immigration system and discussed ways immigration reform could make their jobs easier.

“What I thought was so great about the meeting is how many different voices from the community were here — the people from Micronesia, people with medical issues related to immigration, the immigration services community,” participant John Robert Egan, a Honolulu immigration attorney, remarked after the event. “It’s so great to get so many voices around the table and have a free interchange with the Senator.”

Mazie Poster on Immigration

Participants also spoke up on how important Hirono’s fight for the family immigration system is as the Senate takes up immigration legislation in the coming weeks.

“Senator Hirono showed understanding of the community’s needs and where we are in terms of advocating for the issues. Hopefully, she will be able to get support from the other senators because this really means so much, not only for Hawaii, but for the rest of the country,” remarked participant Melba Bantay, Program Director for Immigration Services at Catholic Charities Hawaii.

After spending three months in the United States Senate and joining key discussions on national security, economic issues, immigration reform and other matters important to Hawaii, Senator Hirono is meeting with Hawaii residents this week to discuss how her work in the Senate impacts them.

 

Share Your Aloha for Sen. Daniel K. Inouye at Mayor Kenoi’s Offices

The late U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye touched many lives through his five decades of service in Washington, D.C., leaving behind a legacy that will touch countless more lives through the years.

US Senator Daniel Inouye and Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi

US Senator Daniel Inouye and Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi

Mayor Billy Kenoi invites the public to share their memories, their thoughts, and their aloha for Senator Inouye. Memorial books will be available through the end of next week (Dec. 28) at the Mayor’s Offices at the Hawai‘i County Building and the West Hawai‘i Civic Center.

The public is invited to come in to sign the books and remember a man who did so much for the people of Hawai‘i for so long. At the end of next week, the books will be sent to the Inouye family.

The Mayor’s Office is open weekdays from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The offices will be open regular hours on Christmas Eve, and closed on Christmas Day. For more information, call the Mayor’s Office in Kona at 323-4444 or in Hilo at 961-8211.

Mayor Kenoi Mourns the Passing of Senator Daniel K. Inouye

Mayor Billy Kenoi and the people of the County of Hawai‘i mourn the passing of United States Senator Daniel K. Inouye, a war hero, distinguished president pro-tempore of the United States Senate, and an effective advocate for the people of Hawai‘i for more than five decades.

Hawai‘i County Mass Transit Agency Director Tom Brown, left, and Mayor Billy Kenoi, accept a Federal Transit Agency check representing $7.2 million from U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye to fund mass transit improvements in the County of Hawai‘i.

Hawai‘i County Mass Transit Agency Director Tom Brown, left, and Mayor Billy Kenoi, accept a Federal Transit Agency check representing $7.2 million from U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye to fund mass transit improvements in the County of Hawai‘i.

“Beyond the titles, beyond the power and the influence, what most stands out is his thoughtfulness, his kindness and how he treated everyone with respect and aloha,” Mayor Kenoi said. “I will never forget that lesson.”

Many of Hawai‘i’s leaders walked through Senator Inouye’s office – including Mayor Kenoi, who worked as an intern in Inouye’s office in the summer of 1992. “He gave me opportunity, and he supported me every step of the way,” Mayor Kenoi said. “I look to him with the same respect, honor and love that I feel for my parents.”

“Senator Inouye was a friend and a mentor to generations of public servants. He always encouraged all of us to fight for what we believe in, to stand up for what is right, and most importantly, to give everything we have to serve the people of Hawai‘i,” Mayor Kenoi said. “He taught all of us how to conduct ourselves as public servants.”

Senator Inouye was a leader who embodied the best of yesterday, who served our community the best he could every day, and who was always mindful of tomorrow, of future generations, Mayor Kenoi said.

“He was a tireless advocate for the people of Hawai‘i. Takako and I, our family, and our community are honored and privileged to have had him as a part of our lives.”