Wednesday, January 23, 2008


$350,000 for tugs for the Superferry--where did that money come from?

by Larry Geller

I wrote about the state subsidy of this commercial operation in a post on Monday. It's kind of corporate welfare, don't you think? Today there is a front-page story in the Advertiser.

Honolulu Adv 20080123Just for fun, I went back to the list of grants-in-aid that have been withheld by Governor Lingle that Ian Lind discovered in the legal notices.

I just picked a few that added up to $350,000. There's no particular reason why I chose these except that they add up to the same $350,000 she is not withholding from the Superferry.

Aloha Medical Mission
Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Association
Assisted Living Options Hawaii
Hawaii Cord Blood Bank
Hawaii Primary Care Association   $50,000
National Kidney Foundation of Hawaii, Inc.

Of course, there is no real connection between these organizations not getting their money and the Superferry getting this service from the State. I just think it's illustrative of what's been going on throughout this governor's tenure in office.

And for what is this $350,000 being spent?

Today's passenger count 

Thanks again to the Maui volunteer counting corps:

37 cars got off the boat.
2 motorcycles got off the boat.
1 truck with crane on back got off the boat.
3 delivery trucks got off the boat.
10-15 people walked off the boat.

31 cars got on the boat.
1 motorcycle got on the boat.
2 Roberts Hawaii buses got on the boat.
2 flat bed trucks got on the boat.
1 truck with bobcat on trailer got on the boat.
10 people got on the boat.

It's continuing to look as though the State is subsidizing a sinking venture.

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Yes, Larry,

HSF competes directly with Young Brothers. YB doesn't have its use of the tug paid for by the state. This is a subsidy.

If the state hadn't let the barge break free back when the judge shut down superferry, then the state wouldn't have to be on the hook for tug rental.

if you want to blame someone, blame cordoza for voiding the operating agreement btw the ferry and the state:

if he hadn't done that, then the ferry would have been responsible for the barge and the state would be off the hook.

I'm not sure about that. Does anyone have information on how the state became responsible for the tugboat cost? I thought that was done early on. Tugs also assist cruise ships, don't they?

The cruise ships pay for their use of the tug boat.

The state will have to pay for this because the design of the barge was called into question with damage before the Superferry started using it regularly. And now the Superferry doesn't have the money to pay for the tug. This will only last until the Superferry fails because it can't even cover its own daily operations with revenue.

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