The 16:45 change actually is nothing more than a stupid solution to a non-existent problem which has beome rather typical of WTC under its current management.
But since you asked here you ho:
They've over stayed their welcome by many years. They take resources from our community and expect to be thanked.
They get special priveleges in conducting their for profit business on our state owned pier and state owned ocean. Guess what? That's not allowed! No other organization charging any fee for any reason whatsoever is allowed to use our pier or state beach access to the ocean unless they're boating related businesses with a permit. That includes all the tri camps, all the swim clinics, local triathlon clubs, and other for profit but smaller races -- all of them. Only WTC Gets away with this. It's been enforced against everyone except WTC. Enforce it against them as well. Or ate they just special and entitled like their athletes of late?
They seriously restrict travel over a large swath of our island on race day. In some places for well over 24 hours.
Their customers have become increasingly rude to locals over the last 5 years in particular.. They run red lights on their bycycles, they don't bother to stop at stop signs, they do more than encroach on the traffic lanes -- they flat out ride in large groups well inside traffic lanes. Somebody is s going to get killed and my sympathy is almost certainly going to be with the hapless driver.
And it's not just bikers. Every year I see numerous instances of runners stopping traffic during rush hour so they don't have to stop and wait for the walk sign during their runs. It's beyond ignorance, it intentional. Never ever see that outside of this time of the year.
WTC pays lip service to the safety issues. And it gets worse every year.
And then there's the travesty of how locals can't even race in the only long course triathlon here without going into the lottery. Big Island residents used to at least be able to compete for our slots. That was taken away as well. Now we get to put our names in a hat instead.
And every year the locals have to put up with way too many of the 1800+ athletes telling us how we ought to do things in Hawaii. And almost none of them have the slightest respect for the host culture.
Then there's the way you could say WTC treated a nice little 70.3 race out here by not just eliminating any pro purse for a June race but eliminating all 70.3 Championship points for the pros.
WTC behaves as if this is their company town. It's not, it's ours. The people that live here own it. I used to say that the town was split in 3s regarding this race. 1/3 wanted it in town, 1/3 wanted it to leave and 1/3 doesn't care. Only that last third hasn't changed. I know few people, including triathletes, who want it to stay now. Most now would send Itonman packing given the chance.
That's the short list.
I was in Oahu this past Christmas break a few days before Obama regime arrived. Talking with some locals, they despised this, for some of the reasons you mentioned. Oahu being such a small island and having Obama there causes a huge economic disruption. Logistics on Oahu are already a nightmare, add in a Presidential visit and it turns the island into gridlock. The bar we were at lays off a few people while Obama is in town and pays for a hotel for others. Just so they can get to work.
I can't imagine how bad Kona gets with 1800 type-a personalities running around in such a small island. I can definitely understand why some would be happy to see it go.
The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.