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 FEBRUARY 2018

FROM THE GOVERNOR: BUILDING A HAWAI'I FOR OUR CHILDREN
The state of our State is strong. We are a resilient people and the future is bright.
As I stand before you today, I am struck by the beautiful and often challenging complexity that makes Hawai‘i our home. We really are the most beautiful place on Earth. We are of many cultures and faiths, and we live in greater harmony than any place in the world. People from all over the planet come here to enjoy our environment, our host culture and their gifts to all of us: gifts of aloha, tolerance and respect, and the celebration of each other and our differences.
(Read more)
WE HAVE PUT OUR VALUES AND BELIEFS INTO ACTION
It is one thing to say our children matter; it is quite another to do something about it. We have invested more widely in classrooms than in previous years. We promised to cool 1,000 of Hawai‘i’s hottest classrooms where soaring temperatures have hindered learning for years. I’m proud to report that, with the Legislature’s support, we exceeded our original goal and we are at 1,200 classrooms and counting (Read more)
WHEN WE SAY 'OHANA, WE TRULY MEAN NOBODY GETS LEFT BEHIND 

For those who want to live in Hawai‘i, probably no issue is more challenging than finding a decent, affordable place to live. And probably no issue challenges us as a society more than the daily sight of those who are now living on our streets and in our parks.
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JOBS THAT PAY WELL AND COMMUTES THAT WORK

Even though tourism is up and unemployment is low, many of our residents are living paycheck to paycheck, one health emergency or car repair away from a crisis. Some people may have two or three jobs to make ends meet. The challenge is not just creating jobs, it’s about creating QUALITY jobs and the training to go with them. That’s why I’m working to transform our economy to give residents a diversity of employment opportunities that pay higher wages and lead to a better quality of life.

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TAKING CARE OF OUR KŪPUNA -- AND OUR OBLIGATIONS
I am proud that together we were able to pass Kūpuna Caregiver legislation that provides assistance for full-time family caregivers who also have full-time jobs. This is a win for Hawaiʻi’s families. (Read more)
PROTECTING OUR ‘ĀINA AND OUR OCEAN FOR OUR QUALITY OF LIFE
We already have ag tech startups going strong in Hawai‘i. One company that comes to mind is Smart Yields. They help small and medium farmers to increase their production with data analytics and other tools. The company received international attention when it was chosen to be a part of the Vatican’s first tech accelerator focused on global food production. At this time, I’d like to recognize Smart Yields CEO Vincent Kimura and his mentor, Hawai‘i Island farmer Richard Ha. (Read more)
DREAMING BIG WITH HOMEGROWN TALENT 
In our own state government, employees are helping us improve our services to the public every day. For example, thanks to a team of young millennials known as “The Three Amigos” – Jodie Nakamura, Ryan Mercado and Liam Tobin – the wait time for workers’ comp hearings has been cut in half. This 2017 Team of the Year from the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations launched a project to digitize mountains of paperwork from some 20,000 claims a year. And there are many more dedicated workers just like them across the state. They’re just a sampling of our homegrown talent. We just need to do more to create the supportive environment around them that will launch and sustain their careers here in the islands. (Read more)
HAWAI'I CAN LEAD THE WAY TO AN INNOVATION ECONOMY 

We have laid important groundwork for an exciting future.

Imagine a future economy for Hawai‘i that isn’t reliant solely on tourism and the military. Imagine a future where local entrepreneurs are inventing useful products and services that are sold across the globe...And what does this mean for the people of Hawai‘i? It means a healthier economy with quality jobs that enable us to improve our schools, take care of our kūpuna and provide more affordable housing. (Read more)

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State of Hawaii, All rights reserved.
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