Name: Josh Green
Current occupation: Physician/State Senator
Political experience: Hawaii State House of Representatives 2004-2008; Hawaii State Senate 2007-present
The duties of the lieutenant governor include legal name changes, certifying and processing documents, managing official documentation for the public, and becoming acting governor when the governor is away from the state. What would you do outside of these duties to bring value to the office?
As a physician and veteran policy maker I intend to take full ownership of the homeless crisis (especially the costly healthcare component which costs Hawaii 100s of millions of dollars annually) and our Opioid Epidemic. I am uniquely qualified to serve as a problem solver in these areas.
Hawaii’s public school system consistently ranks in the lower half of the country. What would you do to change this?
Teacher retention is at the center of this problem. I propose retention bonuses after 2/5/10 years to maintain continuity in the classrooms. We also need 21st century options for students which include accelerated academic tracks for academically minded students, targeting a debt free college experience. More pragmatic programs that develop critical skill sets in the trades should be better developed for those students who prefer this road.
The cost of rail continues to rise. Do you support future state tax increases to fund rail construction or operations? Why or why not?
I was the only candidate in this field that didn’t race to bailout the rail. We should have and must still explore a set of partnerships to finish covering the costs of a successful and important rail project.
As more housing developments are announced and built, it appears very few actually cater toward Hawaii’s working class. Do you think this should change, and if so, how?
For every luxury development approved there must be an affordable project completed by the same developer. Affordable housing should demand less than 30% of a person’s monthly wage which in many cases translates into less than $1000/month. Transit oriented housing will help solve this problem as will a solution on the rampant transient accommodation surge. I will ask the AG to work with me on this matter.
Is there a pressing issue in Hawaii that has gone overlooked and requires action?
Chronic homelessness and opioid addiction must be addressed professionally and competently right away as these problems have left a growing number of devastated families and communities in their wake. I will devote all of my energy as a physician and Lieutenant Governor to solving these problems and have already begun to establish free clinics and health centers in Hawaii to do so.