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Tuesday, May 1, 2018
Final Passage: House, Senate Move Bills
By News Release @ 10:54 PM :: 3962 Views :: Hawaii State Government


Bills protecting coral reefs, addressing homelessness, housing pass final reading in the Senate

News Release from Senate Communications, May 1, 2018

HONOLULU, Hawai‘i – Members of the Hawai‘i State Senate today passed several bills on final reading that position the Legislature to be a national leader in environment and health.   

In passing Senate Bill 2571 SD2 HD2 CD1, Hawai‘i is the first state in the nation to ban the sale of all sunscreens that contain oxybenzone and octinoxate, chemicals that scientific research has found to be toxic to coral.  The bill delays the effective date of the ban until January 1, 2021 to allow for the reformulation of sunscreen to prevent further increase of skin cancer in Hawai‘i. This measure is a step towards preserving the state’s marine ecosystem which is both an important cultural foundation and an economic asset.

Senate Bill 3095 SD1 HD1 CD1 restricts pesticide use within 100 feet of a school during instructional hours and it bans the pesticide chlorpyrifos. Hawai‘i is the first state in the nation to prohibit the use of pesticides containing chlorpyrifos. The measure protects the State’s children, elderly, and vulnerable individuals from the unintended impacts of large-scale agricultural pesticide use.

These, along with the other important measures that passed final reading this Legislative Session, align with the Senate Legislative Program that was consigned to at the beginning of the 2018 Legislative Session. The program is made up of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals that provide a framework for improving the quality of life for all people of Hawai‘i.

“What we’ve been able to accomplish this Session is a template for the planet. The world is watching how Hawai‘i is taking the lead in ensuring the protection and sustainability of our people, communities and natural resources while remaining economically prosperous on a global scale,” said Senate Majority Leader J. Kalani English (Dist. 7 - Hana, East and Upcountry Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i, Kaho‘olawe). “The Senate worked tirelessly to introduce and pass measures that would improve the quality of life for our people and the world.”

The Senate passed a number of significant measures that address other priorities in the Senate Legislative Program, including Ending Poverty, Quality Education, Gender Equality, and Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.

In addressing homelessness and affordable housing, the State Budget, HB1900 HD1 SD1 CD1, provides $15 million to fund homeless programs and services such as Housing First, Rapid Re-Housing, and Family Assessment Centers.  HB2748 HD2 SD2 CD1 provides an unprecedented total of $200 million into the Rental Housing Trust Fund (RHTF), to generate approximately 1,600 affordable rental housing units for families at or below 80 percent AMI; appropriates $10 million into the Dwelling Unit Revolving Fund (DURF) for interim construction financing of affordable housing project; and appropriates $50,000 to prepare an assessment of housing needs for persons with low or no income.  Additionally, HB2748 expands the general excise tax exemption for construction of 24,000 affordable rental units for families at or below 140 percent AMI. The exemption will increase from $7 million (enacted in 2017) to $30 million per year and will be extended from 2022 to 2030. This exemption is valued at $360 million over 12 years. SB2401 SD2 HD1 CD1 and SB2027 SD2 HD1 CD1 provide a total of $34.7 million to fund Ohana Zones and support medical services for the homeless statewide.

SB2351 SD1 HD1 CD1  addresses gender discrimination by prohibiting employers from requesting or considering a job applicant’s wage or salary history as part of an employment application process or compensation offer. 

SB2990 SD2 HD1 CD1 establishes the Paid Family Leave Implementation Board to assist the Department of Human Services in establishing paid family leave for all workers in the State. 

HB1489 HD1 SD2 CD1 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, including gender identity or expression, or sexual orientation, in any state educational program or activity, or in any educational program or activity that receives state financial assistance.

SB2046 SD1 HD1 prohibits the manufacture, importation, sale, transfer, and possession of bump fire stocks, multi-burst trigger activators, and trigger cranks.

HB2071 HD2 SD2 CD1 establishes a statewide standards board to recommend certification and de-certification requirements for state and county law enforcement officers who carry firearms and badges and have arrest authority.

Voters will decide in November how to support public education with SB2922 SD1 HD1 which proposes amendments to the Constitution of the State of Hawai‘i to authorize the Legislature to establish, as provided by law, a surcharge on investment real property to support public education.

Hawai‘i also joined six other states to allow a mentally capable, terminally ill adult with six months or less to live, the freedom to make their own end-of-life decisions, with the earlier passage of HB2739, that was signed into law (Act 002) on April 5, 2018.

In an effort to provide immediate funding for those impacted by the recent flooding, SB192 SD1 HD1 CD1 provides $125 million in aid for the communities on Kaua‘i, East O‘ahu and Waimānalo.

With the exception of SB2922 and HB2739, these bills are now enrolled to the Governor for his approval or veto.

A complete list of the bills that passed in final reading is available at

To view the 2018 Senate Legislative Program, visit

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Lawmakers take action to address flood relief, tackle the homeless crisis, provide affordable housing and increase environmental protections

News Release from House Democratic Caucus, May 1, 2018

Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – At the beginning of the 2018 Legislative Session, leadership in the House of Representatives said their top priorities included funding for affordable housing and homeless support. The House today fulfilled that mandate and approved bills covering a wide range of issues including disaster relief, domestic violence, family leave, and the environment.

Following the disastrous flooding on Kaua‘i and in Waimānalo and East O‘ahu, the Legislature moved quickly to provide an immediate infusion of cash that need not wait for a damage assessment. A total of $125 million will be provided to support those stricken communities.

One of the toughest issues facing lawmakers this session was providing affordable housing. The Legislature approved a comprehensive plan to provide $570 million to develop 25,000 rental units by the year 2030 for working and low-income families having trouble affording and finding a place to live.

To take serious steps in addressing Hawai‘i's homeless crisis, the Legislature is providing $50 million to create solutions that are both flexible and forward thinking. About $37.4 million will be used to develop ‘Ohana Zones statewide and provide much needed medical services for the homeless population. An additional $15 million is in the state budget to provide services to the homeless.

Lawmakers made history again and passed the first measure in the nation to ban the pesticide chlorpyrifos and to restrict the use of certain pesticides within 100 feet of schools.

Another landmark bill passed this session was the Our Care, Our Choice Act. This measure allows qualified patients with a medically confirmed terminal illness with less than six months to live to determine their own medical care at the end of the lives. Several other states have similar laws, but Hawaiʻi's bill provides the most rigorous safeguards of any state.

The Women's Legislative Caucus also took the lead in passing several bills to protect women, children and the survivors of domestic violence. The caucus also successfully worked to pass equal pay and paid family leave.

Highlights of the measures passed today include:

Disaster Relief SB 192 SD1 HD1 CD1

· Provides $100,000,000 to Kaua‘i and $25,000,000 to other areas statewide for flood relief.

· Provides immediate money to cover the upfront costs of needed road repairs, clearing rock slides and infrastructure improvements.

Rental Housing HB 2748 HD2 SD2 CD1

· Appropriates $200 million into the Rental Housing Revolving Fund to generate approximately 1,600 affordable rental housing units for families at or below 80 percent Area Median Income (AMI).

· Expands the general excise tax exemption for construction or substantial rehabilitation of approximately 24,000 affordable rental units for families at or below 140 percent AMI.

· Appropriates $10 million into the Dwelling Unit Revolving Fund (DURF).

· Appropriates $50,000 to prepare an assessment of housing needs for persons with access and functional needs.

Affordable Housing SB 2293 SD2 HD3 CD1

· Begins proceeding to condemn the lease for the Front Street Apartments affordable housing project.

Homeless SB 2401 SD2 HD1 CD1; SB 2027 SD2 HD1 CD1

· $30 million for ‘Ohana Zones on three O‘ahu sites, and one each on Kaua‘i, Maui and Hawai‘i Island. Public lands will be selected by the Governor for the zones.

· $1 million for an Emergency Department Assessment pilot program.

· $1 million for a Medical Respite Pilot Program.

· $800,000 for a new Family Assessment Center.

· $400,000 for two new Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) programs on Maui and Hawai‘i Island.

· 1.5 million for a Coordinated Statewide Homeless Initiative.

Total homeless support $50 million package

· Total funding of $50 million was appropriated for homeless support, including $15 million in the budget to fund homeless services and $1 million for matching funds to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority for homeless related projects in resort areas.

Voting by mail HB 1401 HD1 SD1 CD1

· Pilot program for the 2020 primary and general election on Kaua‘i conducted by mail.

· Office of Elections to submit a report to the Legislature.

Title IX HB 1489 HD1 SD2 CD1

· Prohibits discrimination based on sex, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation in any state education program or activity or any educational program that receives state money.

· Supports Title IX goals.

· Requires the Legislative Reference Bureau to study and report on state and federal enforcement of prohibitions on sex discrimination, complaints and remedies for violations, inconsistencies between state and federal compliance mandates and regulatory systems, and recommendations for appropriate state enforcement mechanisms.

Constitutional Amendment to fund Education SB 2922 SD1 HD1

· Proposes amendments to the Constitution of the State of Hawai‘i to authorize the Legislature to establish, as provided by law, a surcharge on investment real property to support public education.

· Gives the final decision to the voters.

Paid Family Leave SB 2990 SD2 HD2 CD1

· Requires the Legislative Reference Bureau to conduct an analysis by September 1, 2019 of paid family leave including a comparative analysis of other states' paid leave models, including a review of current temporary disability insurance usage and other state temporary disability insurance models;

· Hawai‘i-based cost breakdowns by model on projected impacts to employers by size, impacts to employees, and estimated costs of compliance in related to other employer mandates; and

· Examination of options for compliance and enforcement, including staffing and support recommendations for the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Medical Cannabis

· SB 2407 SD1 HD1 CD1  amends the definition of "debilitating medical condition" as used in the medical use of cannabis law to include opioid and other substance use disorders and withdrawal symptoms resulting from the treatment of those conditions.

· SB 2488 SD2 HD1 CD1 establishes the Medical Cannabis Insurance Reimbursement Working Group to address making medical cannabis reimbursable by health insurance.

· HB 2729 HD2 SD2 CD1 authorizes dispensing of cannabis products to qualified out-ot-state medical cannabis patients.

Pesticides SB 3095 SD1 HD1

· Prohibits the application of restricted use pesticides within 100 feet of a school during school hours.

· Prohibits the use of pesticides containing chlorpyrifos as an active ingredient beginning January 1, 2019.

· Allows exemptions.

Conversion Therapy SB 270 SD1 HD2

· Prohibits persons who are licensed to provide professional counseling in the State from engaging in, attempting to engage in, or advertising the offering of sexual orientation change efforts on minors.

· Establishes the Sexual Orientation Counseling Task Force to address the concerns of minors seeking accessible and appropriate counseling on sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and related issues.

Sunscreen SB 2571 SD2 HD2

· Beginning January 1, 2021, bans the sale, offer of sale, or distribution in the State, except according to a doctor's prescription, of any sunscreen that contains oxybenzone or octinoxate to preserve marine ecosystems.


· HB 694 HD2 SD1 CD1 establishes and appropriates funds for the Health Analytics Program in Med-QUEST. Maintains all-payers medical claims data base.

· HB 1520 HD2 SD1 CD1 protects consumers by regulating limited-duration health insurance offered in the state.

· HB 1911 HD2 SD1 CD1 allows the Department of Health to investigate unlicensed and uncertified care facilities that have been reported to be operating without the appropriate certificate or license.


· HB 1602 HD2 SD1 CD1 requires label warning of risks.

· SB 2247 SD1 HD2 CD1 authorizes pharmacists to provide education on opioids to individuals at risk of overdose.

Domestic Violence

· HB 1614 HD1 SD1 CD1 automatically imposes a restraining order when parties file for an annulment, divorce or separation to preserve financial assets.

· HB 2133 HD1 SD1 CD1 specifies that sexual abuse complaints against a police officer do not require a notarized or sworn statement.

· HB 2341 HD1 SD2 CD1 allows the Employees Retirement System to make payments to spouses or former spouses.

· SB 2346 SD2 HD1 CD1 helps survivors of domestic abuse to relocate and keep relocation and contact information confidential.

Child Safety HB 1650 HD2 SD1 CD1

· Authorizes the disclosure of information regarding confirmed cases of child abuse or neglect.

First Responders

· HB 1778 HD1 SD1 CD1 improves access for firefighters to medical benefits under Workers' Compensation.

· HB 2097 HD1 SD2 CD1 requires the state Attorney General to defend county lifeguards in civil actions and provides funding to hire lifeguards to monitor state and county beach parks.


· HB 1802 HD1 SD1 CD1 Income tax credit pilot program.

· SB 2567 SD2 HD2 CD1 establishes a cesspool conversion working group to develop a plan for the conversion of all cesspools statewide by 2050.

E-Cigarettes HB 1895 HD1 SD1 CD1

· Makes it illegal for people under 21 to possess any tobacco product or electronic smoking device.

Accountability HB 2071 HD2 SD2 CD1

· Establishes a Law Enforcement Standards Board.


· HB 2106 HD3 SD1 CD1 Sea Level Rise must be considered in environmental planning.

· HB 2182 HD2 SD2 CD1 makes Hawai‘i the first state in the nation to commit to carbon neutrality by 2045 and making us the nation's first zero emissions clean economy. Greenhouse Gas Sequestration Task Force aligns with state clean energy and climate goals.

Flotilla HB 2259 HD1 SD3 CD1

· Requires a one-year advance permit for flotillas to mitigate hazards.

Consumer Protection HB 2342 HD1 SD1

· Expands the methods by which a consumer may request a security freeze.

Abandoned Vehicles HB 2442 HD2 SD2 CD1

· Requires the counties to remove all abandoned vehicles within 10 business days of being reported.

Promise Program HB 2501 HD1 SD2 CD1

· Provides scholarships for qualified students at any Community College campus of UH.

Transit Oriented Development SB 1148 SD2 HD2 CD1

· Develop a transit-oriented development zone improvement program.

Firearms SB 2046 SD1 HD1

· Bans devices that may be used to modify firearms into rapid fire automatic weapons.

Gun Control SB 2436 SD2 HD1 CD1

· Requires the surrender of firearms following disqualification from ownership, possession, or control within seven days of disqualification.

Medical Worker Shortage

· SB 2298 SD2 HD3 CD1 addresses worker shortage of nurses, pharmacists and physicians, enables students to obtain a health care degree or certificate.

· SB 2653 SD1 HD1 CD1 establishes requirements for licensure by endorsement (Tripler)

Health Insurance – Affordable Care Act SB 2340 SD2 HD1 CD1

· Ensures certain benefits under ACA are preserved under Hawai‘i law.

Equal Pay SB 2351 SD1 HD1

· Prohibits prospective employers from requesting or considering a job applicant's wage or salary history as part of an employment application process or compensation offer.

· Prohibits employer-enforced wage secrecy and retaliation or discrimination against employees for discussing wage information or for the exercise of equal pay rights.

Sex Abuse

· SB 2719 SD1 HD1 CD1 Extends the period during which a victim of child sex abuse may bring civil action. Applies retroactively to April 24, 2012.

· HB 2131 HD1 SD2 CD1 creates a Hawai‘i Sexual Assault Response and Training Program, addresses evidence collection kits.

Internal Revenue Code Conformity SB 2821 SD1 HD1 CD1

· Conforms Hawai‘i income and estate transfer laws.

The 2018 Legislature will adjourn on Thursday, May 3.

For a complete list of all bills that have passed final reading in the House, go to FINAL READING IN THE HOUSE


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