Resolution creates select committee to prepare for economic impacts of virusHonolulu, Hawaiʻi – The House today approved House Resolution 54 to create a Select House Committee on COVID-19 Economic and Financial Preparedness.
House Speaker Scott K. Saiki introduced the measure that will bring together representatives from local and state government, private industry, and nonprofit agencies and organizations to report back to the House on steps needed to be prepared for the financial effects of an outbreak.
According to the resolution, COVID-19 may deeply impact Hawaiʻi's economy due to the state's proximity to Asia and reliance on the tourism industry and imported goods.
Both the Honolulu Festival and the Festival of Pacific Arts & Culture, which bring thousands of participants to the state, have been cancelled or postponed due to coronavirus concerns.
The State Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism has reported a 7.3 percent drop in international passengers in February and has estimated a loss of more than $23 million in visitor expenditures.
The committee will identify potential economic and financial impacts to the state and develop short-term and long-term mitigation plans so that these types of cuts can be avoided.
Speaker Saiki will appoint the committee's chair and its members.