HONOLULU (KHON2) — Richard Bissen will be the next leader of Maui County after defeating incumbent Mayor Michael Victorino. The former Judge said the work starts now, well before Inauguration Day, which includes building the right team to serve Maui County.
“We want to encourage folks to submit resumes so they can be interviewed by our transition team,” said Richard Bissen, Maui County Mayor-Elect. “We want to recruit folks. We want to retain folks that are interested in their positions if they’re doing a good job.”
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Maui voters came out in full force Tuesday to vote in-person at the Wailuku Community Center. Voters KHON2 spoke with said they want issues from water rights to affordable housing addressed.
“I hate to see local families pushed out, because of these high rents,” said Andrew Kang, a Waiehu resident. “I see people on the beach and I see them putting on their work clothes to go to work, but they still have to live on the beach and I don’t think that’s right.”
Now, Bissen will have to work with the Maui County Council when it comes to the budget.
“We’re hoping that he places affordable housing and the homeless problem on the top of his list and also expanding monies for new infrastructure, which we will need for affordable housing,” said Alice Lee, Maui County Council Chair.
The Maui County Council Chair and Bissen worked together on former Mayor James Apana’s cabinet. She believes the transition will be a smooth one.
“Richard is the type to want to compromise and collaborate. So that shouldn’t be a problem and I know that the council that we have is also the type to want to work collaboratively,” Lee said.
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Bissen said he’s ready to hit the ground running to make Maui County a better place for all.
“I feel like I understand our folks, our people, our kamaaina and I think we’re all working towards doing what’s best for them,” Bissen said.