About schedules, etc.

The Golden Week holiday has ended with great success of events. Yesterday, I visited Sakaiminato City. It is amazing that more than 50 thousand holidaymakers a day have packed to Sakaiminato City to meet the Yokais (Japanese goblins) on the Mizuki Shigeru Road there. This number is in excess of the population of Sakaiminato City (about 32 thousand). Also, the Aoyama Gosho Furusato Museum in Hokuei Town, and Akagawara in Kurayoshi City attracted many holidaymakers during the GW holiday. Mr. Gosho Aoyama, from Tottori prefecture, is a cartoonist well-known for his “Meitantei Konan.” Akagawara means Red Tile Roof or Shirakabe Dozo (White Earthen Storehouses) District where various shops of local goods and Sake line the streets. Our prefecture has so many attractive tourism spots besides these. I feel that we should show more successful examples.
Various meetings are scheduled. Today and tomorrow, I will hold a meeting with all the factions of the assembly to listen to their opinions and requests. Today, I will talk with the representatives of the National Federation of Small Business Associations, and next week, the representatives of the JA (Japan Agricultural Cooperatives). As for the meeting with the municipalities, it is scheduled next week. I will first meet with Iwami Town in Tottori City. By having these meetings, I want to pave the way for the Next-Generation Reform step by step.

Q. Did you get any response during your visit to several companies in Osaka to attract them to our region?

I started making courtesy visits to companies that we expect to attract. I explained to them that, within Tottori prefecture, the electronics industry locations are increasing, such as the manufacturers of liquid-crystal displays with backlighting. They evaluated our prefecture as having a technologically integrated environment. I feel their response was positive. Tottori prefecture will likely attract these companies if conditions are right.

Q. How is the progress of the New-Generation Reform Promotion Head Office going?

I will launch this New-Generation Reform Head Office (Jisedai Kaikaku Suishin Honbu) divided into teams for the project of welfare, human rights and environment. I just started discussions on this matter and am laying out the framework within the prefectural office. I will take the measures necessary for this reform, incorporating outside opinions into the project.

Q. It’s been about one month since you took in office. What is your impression?

Speaking honestly, I have the impression that the prefectural office staff must change more in their way of thinking. I feel that the private sector has a greater sense of speed and takes enthusiastically steps toward urban development on a regional scale. The prefectural staffs have not yet built a system that follows up on the private sector’s activities. It will be necessary for the prefectural staffs to create a system that is more flexible and enables them to take measures closely linking to the private sector. I also I have the impression that a move is growing in the public toward next-generation reform.

Q. You have stated in the initial manifesto that you want to make a financial index. How is it going?

At the June assembly session, I want to present at least a preliminary draft of the financial index to avoid bankruptcy. Until now, it seems that no financial scheme or techniques have been created such as making graphs or showing by way of the characteristics of logarithms, for example. Financial status should show by the mid-term fiscal outlook so that residents can understand the flow. We must continuously evaluate the point at which our prefecture stands - whether our finances show a rosy forecast or are being barely kept alive.

Q. Is that the reason you are making the index so that the residents will be able to participate in discussions?

I think that financial issues should be transparent as well. The administration is responsible not only for explaining the current status but also for providing materials that are discussed among the residents. Finances are dynamic in nature and may change from day to day dependent on systemic revision or tax revenue, but I think that we can discuss these matters with the residents showing them our vision for the future of the prefecture.

Q. On the new chairperson’s appointment to the new assembly, do you have a desirable portrait of who it should be?

We are in these difficult times, especially in the areas of decentralization and local finance. I hope that the new chairperson will be one who argues with great passion, focusing on what's to come.

Q. What problem do you think the prefectural assembly should address?

The prefectural assembly has traditionally attached great significance to developing free and vigorous discussions. I expect them of continuous development, while revealing transparency for the residents.

Q. When are you planning to setup the project team for promoting economic development and job security? And how will you position the project team?

For the compilation of a supplementary budget in the June assembly session, the prefectural assembly needs to firstly discuss the budget in which the costs of research and holding of the conference are incorporated. If the assembly agrees, after discussion, to setup of this strategic project team, we must immediately prepare the formation. After the close of the session, I want to aim for the personnel selection of this project team. This team will be appointed to the Department of Labor and Commerce. I want them to make policy proposals for individual policy challenges in a timely manner. After that, the executive office will discuss the last-minute details to submit to the assembly. I’d prefer to draw focus to the quick-impact and priority policies rather than invite comments from an organization like consultative body.


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