The House Majority today announced their 2009 priorities through a package of bills related to the Economy, Education, and Health and Safety issues. Given the state’s current budget shortfall, the House’s mandate and main objective is to pass a balanced budget. When selecting bills for the majority package, House members were asked to submit legislation for consideration which has statewide relevance, and will help the state’s future growth and stability.
“Although we face a challenging economic crisis that will severely impact our ability to appropriate funding for programs, we clearly see the importance of ensuring quality education for our children, public health and safety, and preparing the state to succeed in the long-term,” said House Majority Leader Blake Oshiro. “The legislature considers thousands of bills each year; the Majority Package reflects our priorities.”
Here are the bills organized by topic:
HB980 RELATING TO RECREATIONAL RENAISSANCE. Introducer: Rep. Ken Ito. Contact: 586-8470.
This bill fortifies the recreational renaissance program of the department of land and natural resources through various amendments to state law.
HB984 RELATING TO TECHNOLOGY. Introducer: Rep. Marcus Oshiro. Contact: 586-6200. Rep. Kyle Yamashita. Contact: 586-6330.
This bill Implements key recommendations of the Hawaii Broadband Task Force by establishing the Hawaii Communications Commissioner (HCC) in the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA). It transfers functions relating to telecommunications from the Public Utilities Commission to the HCC and functions relating to cable services from DCCA to the HCC. It also establishes a work group to develop procedures to streamline state and county broadband regulation, franchising, and permitting, and to report back to the Legislature.
HB987 RELATING TO UNEMPLOYMENT. Introducer: Rep. Denny Coffman. Contact: 586-9605.
This bill creates the State Comprehensive Employment Training Program providing subsidized employment for work with a public purpose. It appropriates funds.
HB988 RELATING TO PROCUREMENT. Introducer: Rep. Blake Oshiro. Contact: 586-6340.
This bill allows for persons desiring a Hawaii product preference, when submitting bids, to self-certify as an alternative to registration on the Hawaii products list. It amends the definition of a Hawaii product by revising the product classes. It also revises administrative rules relating to exemptions from procurement.
HB993 PROPOSING AN AMENDMENT TO THE HAWAII CONSTITUTION, RELATING TO THE DISPOSITION OF PROJECTED EXCESS REVENUES. Introducer: Rep. Karl Rhoads. Contact: 586-6180.
This bill routes a portion of projected increases in general fund revenues to an emergency and budget reserve fund established by law. It sets 7% as the percentage that triggers the disposition.
HB985 RELATING TO EDUCATION. Introducer: Rep. Mark Nakashima. Contact: 586-6680.
This bill returns the Department of Education to a system divided by districts in lieu of the current complex area structure. It requires the Board of Education to appoint the district superintendents. It also establishes duties of the district superintendent.
HB986 RELATING TO PUBLIC SCHOOL FACILITIES. Introducer: Rep. Hermina Morita. Contact: 586-8435.
This bill requires the construction and renovation of public school facilities to meet the Collaborative for High Performance Schools standards. It requires replacement of old portable buildings with high performance classrooms. It also requires prioritization of public school facilities projects in accordance with certain criteria.
HB992 RELATING TO NUTRITION. Introducer: Rep. Joe Bertram. Contact: 586-8525.
This bill establishes a farm-to-work nutrition program in the public schools.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
HB981 RELATING TO HIGHWAY SAFETY. Introducer: Rep. Sharon Har. Contact: 586-8500.
This bill makes amendments to Act 171, Session Laws of Hawaii 2008, reflecting recommendations of the Ignition Interlock Implementation Task Force.
HB982 RELATING TO FAMILY LEAVE. Introducer: Rep. Marilyn Lee. Contact: 586-9460.
This bill establishes a new data collection system for family leave. It extends applicability of the family leave law to employers with 50 or more employees and to certain emergency and casual hires of the State and counties.
HB983 RELATING TO EDUCATION. Introducer: Rep. Marilyn Lee. Contact: 586-9460.
This bill requires the Director of Transportation to conduct a statewide pupil travel evaluation to study how students get to school, and to use that information to award federal grants for school-based workshops and community planning that will reduce traffic congestion, encourage walking and bicycling, and increase health and safety. It requires the Director of Transportation to streamline the grant application process. It also requires annual reports.
HB989 RELATING TO CHILDREN’S HEALTH CARE. Introducer: Rep. Ryan Yamane. Contact: 586-6150.
This bill amends Act 236, Session Laws of Hawaii 2007, which established the Hawaii children's health care program, to extend the program for three more years and require that participants receive primary health care services at federally qualified health centers.
HB990 RELATING TO DISASTER PREPAREDNESS. Introducer: Rep. Robert Herkes. Contact: 586-8400.
This bill establishes the Office of the Director of Disaster Preparedness and a Disaster Preparedness Commission to develop a disaster preparedness plan for Hawaii that includes the identification of hazards and hazard impact zones, disaster mitigation policies, requirements, and incentives, and best responses. It appropriates funds. Effective 7/1/09.
HB991 RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII. Introducer: Rep. Ryan Yamane. Contact: 586-6150.
This bill establishes loan repayment program for University of Hawaii medical school graduates working in rural areas of the State.