Below is an update of bills that have made the second crossover deadline, when bills have passed third reading in their non-originating chamber and “cross back” to their originating chamber. From here, bills will get assigned to a Conference Committee that will meet to discuss the differences between amendments made in the House and Senate drafts. The Conference Committees will need to agree on a final version of the bill by April 25th for non-fiscal bills or April 26th for fiscal bills. The bill’s conference draft will then need to pass final reading by both the House and Senate by May 2nd, the last day of legislative session. Then the bills head to the Governor’s desk for consideration.
Carbon Free Hawaiʻi
HB 307 – [Oppose] Broadens the definition of "renewable energy" as used in the public utilities commission law to include other self-replenishing non-fossil fuel, non-nuclear resources. Amends the renewable energy technologies income tax credit by, among other things, including commercial seawater air conditioning systems.
HB 556 – [Support] Requires the department of business, economic development, and tourism to adopt minimum appliance efficiency standards for certain products sold or installed in the State that are substantially equivalent to existing appliance efficiency standards established in California.
SB 409 – [Oppose] Establishes an annual vehicle registration surcharge fee for electric vehicles and alternative fuel vehicles to be deposited into the State Highway Fund.
Planning for Rising Seas
HB 765 – [Support] Requires incorporation of sea level rise projections in all new plans and updates to existing state plans generated under the Hawaii State Planning Act and the plans of the Public Utilities Commission.
HB 1487 – [Support] Establishes the Honolulu shoreline climate protection pilot project to develop a plan to protect urban Honolulu from the impacts of sea level rise, floodwater, storms, and other impacts of a rapidly changing climate. Appropriates funds to the Department of Land and Natural Resources for the development of the Honolulu shoreline climate protection pilot project. Appropriates funds to the Office of Planning to conduct a comprehensive study of a statewide carbon tax.
Protecting Freshwater and Marine Ecosystems
HB 551 – [Support] Extends lapse date for funds appropriated to the University of Hawaii to conduct a comprehensive statewide study of sewage contamination in nearshore marine areas. Extends lapse date for funds appropriated to the Department of Health to conduct research or gather technical assistance relating to the cesspool conversion working group's comprehensive cesspool conversion plan.
HB 808 – [Support] Establishes an offense of knowingly capturing, taking, possessing, abusing, entangling, or killing a shark in state marine waters, along with penalties and fines. Expands the existing prohibition on knowingly capturing or killing a manta ray in state marine waters to apply to all rays and to also include knowingly taking, possessing, abusing, or entangling a ray. Provides certain exemptions.
HB 1405 – [Support w/ amendments] Adjusts the operating budget for the fiscal biennium 2019-2021 for certain Department of Land and Natural Resources programs (appropriates $6M for Environmental Impact Statements for County of Kaua‘i and County of Hawai‘i water permits).
SB 223 – [Watching] Transfers operational authority over portions of the East Kauai Irrigation System operated and maintained by the East Kauai Water Users' Cooperative as of July 1, 2019, to the Department of Agriculture. Provides a conditional extension to acquire required permits. Establishes staffing positions. Authorizes general obligation bonds for a statewide irrigation system capital improvement project. Appropriates funds.
SB 522 – [Support] Single-use Plastics Working Group.
Common Good Coalition
Automatic Voter Registration
SB 412 – [Support] Automatic Voter Registration for driver's license and identification card applications.
Taxation of Real Estate Investment Trusts
SB 301 – [Support]
SB 390 – [Support] Department of Agriculture to create a dollar-for-dollar match program for beneficiaries of the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program who purchase Hawaii-grown produce.
SB 789 – [Support w/ amendments] Changes minimum wage rates annually from 1/1/2020, to 1/1/2024. Provides lower minimum wage rates for employees who receive employer-sponsored health benefits under the Hawaii Prepaid Health Care Act. Includes persons with disabilities under generally applicable minimum wage requirements.
HB 1191 – [Support w/ amendments] Provides an income tax credit for qualifying small businesses to offset the increase in the minimum hourly wage that employers must pay employees. Increases the minimum wage to $12.00 per hour beginning 1/1/2020 and $15.00 per hour beginning 1/1/2023. Establishes a minimum wage of $17.00 per hour for any person employed in a full-time position with the State of Hawaii beginning upon approval of the Act. Tax credit applies to taxable years beginning after 12/31/2019.
HCR 55 – [Support] Requesting the Governor to convene a working group to make recommendations on the consolidation of state environmental functions and the establishment of a Department of the Environment.
SCR 31 – [Support] Designating the Hawaii State Capitol building and its grounds as a single-use plastic free zone.
SCR 184 – [Support] Requesting the United States Army Corps of Engineers, State of Hawaii, and City and County of Honolulu to establish a working group to explore matters related to the Ala Wai Watershed.