The Honolulu Star Advertiser is reporting that the Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim has decided to opt-out of the pre-travel testing program set to start October 15th.
Hawaii County Mayor Kim is quoted saying "All of us want to open up our economy, (but) … I made a decision that the risk factor in regards to doing this at this time is not an acceptable risk as far as endangering Hawaii’s people,” Kim said, adding that he is trying to come up with a plan to address issues involving reopening tourism."
Find the article here: https://www.staradvertiser.com/2020/10/06/hawaii-news/big-island-opts-out-of-pre-travel-testing-program/
It is unconscionable for Mayor Kim to make this decision 10 days before the pre-travel testing program is to begin. Vacation rentals, hotels, and resorts have already begun accepting reservations for October and November in anticipation of the pre-travel testing program.
The Big Island has effectively been shut down since March. The pre-travel testing program is a reasonable approach that balances safety with the need to re-open and welcome visitors again. Further delay will needlessly deepen the economic devastation that has been inflicted on Big Island families and businesses.
BIVRA is meeting with legal counsel later this afternoon to discuss potential options to fight this wrong-headed decision.
Big Island Vacation Rental Association