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Saturday, September 16, 2023
Six House Working Groups Investigate Lahaina Fires
By News Release @ 4:00 AM :: 1711 Views :: Maui County, Hawaii State Government

SPEAKER SAIKI ISSUES STATEMENT REGARDING HOUSE INTERIM WORKING GROUP MEETINGS

News Release from House of Representatives, Sept 15, 2023

Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – Speaker Scott K. Saiki provided the following statement today:

"The Hawaiʻi House of Representatives formed six interim working groups tasked with the responsibility of evaluating specific topics related to the Lāhainā wildfire and making recommendations for appropriate legislative action in the 2024 legislative session. Each working group will produce a preliminary report by November 1 and deliver a final report by December 15, 2023.

In an effort to obtain information and receive input, the working groups will collaborate with federal, state, and county agencies, and community stakeholders to identify key issues and recommendations that will be reflected in the reports. As transparency remains our utmost priority, the House will hold public hearings on substantive recommendations of each working group. Advance notice of hearings will be provided, and the public will have an opportunity to participate and provide testimony in person or virtually. To sign up for hearing notices, please visit www.capitol.hawaii.gov.

Community input is critical to each report. We welcome the public's involvement and encourage the public to submit any suggestions or comments directly to the co-chairs of the working groups. The final reports will play a critical role in shaping the upcoming session's legislative initiatives."

The working groups and the respective co-chairs are as follows:

Environmental Remediation

Co-Chairs: Representative Nicole E. Lowen

Representative Elle Cochran

Purpose: To evaluate the cleanup of ground and ocean contamination, including the timeframe and techniques utilized, and to prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

Food, Water and Other Supplies

Co-Chairs: Representative Greggor Ilagan

Representative Terez Amato

Purpose: To evaluate the availability and distribution of food and other necessary supplies for displaced individuals and families, and to prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

Jobs and Business

Co-Chairs: Representative Daniel Holt

Representative Andrew Takuya Garrett

Purpose: To evaluate the Maui unemployment rate and the approaches to restart business activity as well as the impacts to tourism statewide, and to prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

Schools

Co-Chairs: Representative Justin H. Woodson

Representative Jenna Takenouchi

Purpose: To evaluate the strategies utilized to accommodate displaced students and staff to return to school, and to prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

Shelter

Co-Chairs: Representative Troy N. Hashimoto

Representative Luke A. Evslin

Purpose: To evaluate the availability and creation of temporary and transitional shelters for displaced individuals and families, and to prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

Wildfire Prevention

Co-Chairs: Representative Linda Ichiyama

Representative Darius K. Kila

Purpose: To identify the causes of wildfires and preventative action that may be taken to reduce the risk of wildfires throughout the state, and prepare recommendations for appropriate legislative action.

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