For Immediate Release: September 12, 2007
GOVERNOR LINGLE STRESSES PUBLIC SAFETY IN SUPERFERRY’S RESUMPTION OF SERVICE TO KAUA‘I
HONOLULU – Governor Linda Lingle today announced today that the Hawai‘i Superferry will resume service to Kaua‘i starting Wednesday, September 26 on a temporary daylight schedule. The Governor also stressed that federal, state and county law enforcement agencies will strictly enforce a temporary security zone established at Nāwiliwili Harbor by the United States Coast Guard.
Today’s announcement follows extensive planning by Governor Lingle, Mayor Bryan Baptiste, the U.S. Coast Guard, state Departments of Public Safety, Transportation and Land and Natural Resources, Attorney General’s Office, Kaua‘i Police Department, and other government agencies to allow the Superferry to safely enter and depart the harbor, while providing a safe place for protestors to demonstrate.
“We have worked with our county and federal partners to make certain that the resumption of Hawai‘i Superferry service to Kaua‘i focused on public safety, first and foremost,” said Governor Lingle. “We believe the plan will protect public safety, recognize Hawai‘i Superferry’s legal right to operate, provide lawful opportunities for those who want to protest, and move to restore the state’s reputation as a place of mutual respect for those who have differing points of view.
“We respect everyone’s right to voice their opinion, but we will not allow a small group of protestors to act out in a lawless manner to obstruct the operations of a legitimate business, intimidate the people who wish to use its services or put people’s lives at risk,” the Governor added.
Governor Lingle also cautioned anyone who is planning to recruit children or teenagers to participate in illegal protests that they could be held liable for child endangerment. During the demonstrations that met the Superferry upon its first two voyages to Kaua‘i, several children were on surfboards in the harbor and came dangerously close to the Alakai and Coast Guard vessels.
Between now and Sept. 26, Governor Lingle and state, county and federal partners are planning to visit Kaua‘i to meet with the public regarding the plan for the return of Superferry service to Līhu‘e. They will meet with groups on Kaua‘i, both those who support and oppose the Superferry, as well as those who want to learn more.
“We want to make sure that those who choose to violate the temporary security zone and put themselves or others at risk understand that they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent allowed under federal and state law,” said Governor Lingle.
For more information, contact:
Senior Advisor – Communications
Phone: (808) 586-7708
Chief of Media Relations
Phone: (808) 586-0043