Tuesday, December 18, 2018
Hawai'i Free Press

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Sunday, August 27, 2017
UPDATE: Billion Dollar Bailout Added to Rail Tax Hike Bill
By News Release @ 6:00 PM :: 2656 Views :: Rail

UPDATE: As of Friday Aug 25 SB1 has been deleted from the WAM Hearing notice and replaced by SB4.  The WAM hearing has been moved back from 11:30am to 3pm Monday August 28.  Both bills were introduced by Sen Kouchi "by request." The bill descriptions are identical except for the addition of a $1B appropriation in SB4 (highlighted in yellow below).  The $1B appropriation can be seen in Sec 17 of SB4 (pg30).  

The bill texts contain other differences, for instance SB4 allocates $1M for audits and creates three positions for HART expenditure verification.  SB1 allocated only $500K for audits and created only one position for expenditure verification.

Report Title: County Surcharge on State Tax; Extension; Transient Accommodations Tax; Appropriations


Authorizes a county that has adopted a surcharge on state tax to extend the surcharge to 12/31/2030.

Authorizes a county to adopt a surcharge on state tax before 3/31/2018, under certain conditions.

Decreases from 10% to 1% the surcharge gross proceeds retained by the State.

Allows the director of finance to pay revenues derived from the county surcharge under certain conditions.

Clarifies uses of surcharge revenues.

Establishes a mass transit special fund and specifies that funds be allocated for capital costs of a mass transit project, under certain conditions.

Increases the TAT by 1% from 1/1/2018 to 12/31/2030 and allocates revenues to the special fund.

Establishes that if a court makes a monetary award to a county due to the State's violation of state law or constitutional provision relating to the State's deduction and withholding of county surcharge on state tax revenues, then an amount equal to the award shall be withheld from the additional TAT revenues paid over to the mass transit special fund and shall be credited to the general fund.

Makes $103,000,000 the permanent annual allocation of TAT revenues to the counties.

Requires the state auditor to conduct an audit and annual reviews of HART.

Requires the comptroller to certify HART'S expenditures for capital costs.

Appropriates funds for the department of budget and finance, DAGS, and the state auditor. 

Appropriates $1,000,000,000 from the mass transit special fund. 

Requires the senate president and house speaker to each appoint 2 non-voting, exofficio members to the board of directors of HART.

Link: SB1 Text, Status

Link: SB4 Text, Status

Link: Special Session Proclamation

Link: Bills Introduced for Special Session


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