Eco­nomic Ini­tia­tives Crit­i­cal For Youths’ Fu­ture

MidWeek Islander (Central Oahu) - - Central Oahu Islander -

the good of all.”

There were nine teams par­tic­i­pat­ing this year, en­tered in four cat­e­gories from grades K to 12. They had to cre­ate orig­i­nal lemon­ade recipes, come up with a theme for their booth and give a one­minute pitch to the judges.

Lemon­ade Al­ley is a great op­por­tu­nity for young en­trepreneurs. Our kids need to be out-ofthe-box creative thinkers to thrive in the 21st cen­tury. We need to en­cour­age more op­por­tu­ni­ties for sim­i­lar events in Hawaii.

One par­tic­u­lar booth caught my at­ten­tion. Two el­e­men­tary school broth­ers cre­ated the prod­uct, “We Kea Lemon­ade.” They learned how to stream­line their pro­duc­tion process and prod­uct assem­bly, while col­lab­o­rat­ing on prod­uct pre­sen­ta­tion and di­vi­sion of team la­bor. They took their as­sign­ment se­ri­ously and had fun at the same time!

This is ex­actly the type of at­mos­phere we need to en­cour­age in our youths, since th­ese skills are trans­ferrable to the adult world. Prod­uct assem­bly, di­vi­sion of la­bor and mar­ket­ing all are skills that suc­cess­ful busi­ness own­ers are famil- iar with. HAWAII GROWTH

INI­TIA­TIVE Hawaii Growth Ini­tia­tive (HGI) is a pro­gram that will fund the Hawaii Strate­gic De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion (HDSC). The pur­pose of HGI is to at­tract en­tre­pre­neur­ial tal­ent and pri­vate cap­i­tal to Hawaii’s high-growth busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties by sup­port­ing an en­tre­pre­neur­ial ecosys­tem, part­ner­ing re­search ac­tiv­i­ties with state and pri­vate in­dus­try, and net­work­ing busi­ness to sources of main­land and in­ter­na­tional cap­i­tal in­vest­ment.

The HGI and HDSC are the types of pub­lic pol­icy ini­tia­tives that young en­trepreneurs like our Lemon­ade Al­ley par­tic­i­pants should look for­ward to in the fu­ture. Why can’t the next Bill Gates or Steve Jobs come from Hawaii?

HGI had over­whelm­ing sup­port from both the pub­lic and pri­vate sec­tor, in­clud­ing the Cham­ber of Com­merce of Hawaii. We need to sup­port this and sim­i­lar mea­sures that will grow our lo­cal busi­ness com­mu­nity.

This will in­crease jobs in our state and at the same time in­crease the tax base. HGI is a far bet­ter idea than in­creas­ing taxes on our No. 1 in­dus­try — the vis­i­tor in­dus­try.

I sup­port HB858, the Hawaii Growth Ini­tia­tive. Bills like this help to di­ver­sify our econ­omy and at the same time de­velop new op­por­tu­ni­ties. This is the mes­sage that we want to send to the busi­ness sec­tor: Hawaii is open for busi­ness.

To con­tact us, please call 586-6380. You also can email rep­fale@capi­tol.hawaii.gov or visit us at the Hawaii State Capi­tol, Room 319.

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