Wednesday, January 17, 2018


Seeks courageous action to tackle homelessness, housing issues

Honolulu, Hawaii – In his opening day remarks, Speaker of the House Scott K. Saiki told the 51 members of the House of Representatives that they must "step up to the plate" to provide the leadership needed during these "tumultuous times."

"The State of Hawaii requires leadership now and the House of Representatives can and should provide that leadership," Speaker Saiki said. "Unfortunately, one need only look to the past weekend to see a glaring instance of the inability of government at various levels to manage major issues facing out state."

Saiki was referring to the false emergency alert of an imminent missile strike issued by the state.

"Saturday's events reinforce the importance of the role of government. It also shines light on the role of the Legislature as the policymaker and as the check to other branches of government," Saiki said. "It is our duty to ensure that the three branches abide by their respective constitutional duties so that we all do our jobs well."

Saiki said House members are diverse, experienced, and energetic and begin this legislative session with a renewed sense of purpose.

"Our members have a pulse on what real people actually think, what they do, and what they want," Saiki said. "We should use this insight to be bold and creative. We should always be thinking of how to make things better."

Saiki told the Representatives and members of the public gathered in the House Chambers that the lack of affordable housing and the increasing homeless population are "two painfully obvious challenges that confront our state."

Saiki said solving these issues will take "commitment and courageous action, sustained over several years."

With more than 7,000 homeless persons throughout the state, Saiki said our approach to the issue requires multifaceted short- and long-term action. He said an example of a successful public-private partnership is Kahauiki Village, a self-contained community with 153 transitional homes, a preschool, a market, and a police meeting room.

"This model can be extended to homeless populations with substance abuse and mental health conditions," he said. "One important takeaway is that Kahauiki Village represents what is possible if people and agencies at different levels work towards a common goal."

To be effective leaders, Saiki called on the Representatives to be open to reform and challenge the status quo, to view challenges through the lens of those who are impacted by them, and to take a global approach to decision making.

"Members, we are at a moment in history where we cannot just be stewards. This legislative session is a call to broader involvement and decisive action," Saiki said. "We must be courageous activists because the issues facing our state are too urgent to wait. I know that we are up to the challenge."

(House Speaker Scott's K. Saiki's OpeningDay Remarks)

Tuesday, January 16, 2018



WHAT:          The Hawaii House of Representatives and Senate to convene the 2018 Legislative Session

The convening of the session will mark the second year of the 29th Biennial Hawaii State Legislature

WHEN:          Wednesday, January 17, 2018
                        10 a.m.

WHERE:       House Chamber, Senate Chamber
                        Hawaii State Capitol

We expect a large crowd and encourage motorists to carpool or use public transportation. There will be no public parking at the State Capitol.

The public is welcome to attend the opening floor sessions, however seating is limited. Access to the Chamber galleries will be from the rotunda and will open to the public at 9:45 a.m. on a first-come, first-served basis.

House floor proceedings will be aired live on Olelo channel 49 and Senate floor proceedings will be aired live on Olelo channel 55. Neighbor islands will be able to view the House opening day proceedings live through their local public access stations.  Senate proceedings will be on tape delay through their local public access stations. It will also be streamed live online at

Friday, January 12, 2018


 In advance of the opening of the 2018 Legislative session, the Hawaii State Legislature and Olelo Community Media will launch a live weekly television program from the State Capitol on channel 49.
The 30-minute program titled "Live at the Legislature" will premiere at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 16. (The 2018 regular legislative session opens Jan. 17.) The show will thereafter air on Mondays at 8:30 a.m. (or Tuesdays if Monday is a holiday) until the Legislature adjourns on May 3.

The first program will feature House Majority Leader Della Au Belatti discussing the majority's agenda for the session.

"This new Olelo program is a great opportunity for Representatives to speak directly to Hawaii residents about the work being done to craft legislation that affects them," said House Speaker Scott K. Saiki. "Viewers can follow the 2018 Legislative session week by week right along with us."

For the Senate, their first featured legislators will be Senate President Ron Kouchi and Senate Majority Leader J. Kalani English.

"We’re always looking for ways to keep our constituents up to date on the events and issues of the Senate during the busy Legislative Session and this show will help us do just that," said Sen. J. Kalani English, Senate Majority Leader. "This is one more way we hope to encourage the public to actively participate in the legislative process and help us to make effective change and build stronger communities."

Each week the program will feature segments from the House Majority, House Minority and the Senate to provide perspectives from each chamber.

The live-stream of the weekly show will also be seen on OleloNet at Each show will be available at and through the Hawaii Government Public Network Channel 50. The House will post links on our Facebook page at .

For more information, visit