Maui County Councilman Mike Molina has joined the county’s mayoral election field, announcing his intent to run on the heels of last week’s campaign declarations by Mayor Mike Victorino and Judge Richard Bissen.

As a council member, Molina serves as the chairman of the government relations, ethics and transparency committee. The native of Makawao is also a substitute public school teacher.

Previously, he served as an executive assistant to former Mayor Alan Arakawa.

Maui County locator map

Molina said in a prepared statement that he stands for responsive, accountable leadership. He identified six campaign priorities: housing, public safety, the environment, economic diversification, food security and tourism management.

His opponents include Victorino, the incumbent candidate who is seeking a second four-year term, and Bissen, a former chief judge of the Maui 2nd Circuit Court who is jumping into politics following a 35-year legal career.

All three candidates have identified housing, jobs and the environment as cornerstones of their campaign. But so far no details on the candidates’ platforms have been made publicly available.

Maui County will elect a new mayor in November, following the August primary.

Candidates can start officially filing to run March 1 with the Office of the County Clerk’s Election Division.

Civil Beat’s coverage of Maui County is supported in part by a grant from the Nuestro Futuro Foundation.

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