Large corporate money is flowing from Nevada in an attempt to control the outcome Maui County Council races and seven charter amendments.

The new super political action committee (PAC) based in Reno, Nev., has launched a $120,000 effort to elect a pro-development/pro-corporate slate of candidates, essentially attempting to take over the Maui County Council. The “Hui O Maui Citizens for Change” super PAC chairperson and treasurer is Grant David Gillham, who lives in Nevada.

All the cards, mailers, banners and television/radio ads against progressive council members, candidates and the charter amendments are from this source. They may use some local voices, but there isn’t anything local about this. Whether funds are A&B or other sources we do not know, as a super PAC uses dark money — they do not have to give their sources.

Local groups such as the Maui Pono Network who back progressive candidates and the seven charter amendments have to tell where their money comes from. The Gillham group is big money from an unknown source. It’s dirty politics where anyone with large funds can attempt to overwhelm and destroy local good governance.

Do we let some outside entity that throws $120,000 into our local races dictate our government’s future? Or do we vote with the majority of our Maui County Council, give ourselves the changes in our charter that we need, and move on?

Personally, I will vote for all seven charter amendments, King, Sinenci, Rawlins-Fernandez, Johnson, Paltin, Eyre and Kamikona. I will not let Nevada hired guns confuse my vote.

Sean Lester


Maui News