2010 Legislative Session Wrap-Up

The 2010 session focused on ways to trim the budget in these tough economic times while continuing to support the social safety net and promote economic development. Despite the urging of many to increase the GET tax, the Legislature chose not to in an effort, in part, to support small businesses owners like Derek Pine of Hale Nalu Surf & Bike. [Click on the image to enlarge].

Mahalo nui loa for the privilege of serving you since 2003. I am excited to report on the highlights of the 2010 session:

Education

HB 2200, the state budget, has $3 mil for land, design & construction for LCC/Wai’anae Educ. Ctr.; $48 mil for UH West Oahu

HB 2486 sets a minimum number of instructional hours per school year for each grade

SB 2124 appropriates $67.5m from Hurricane Relief Fund to restore remaining school instructional days for 2009-’10 & 2010-’11 school years

SB 2589 requires DOE to make available vacant school facilities for charter school use, increases the cap on charter schools, and provides for other charter school improvements

SB 2395 (Act 106) extends VEBA, health plan for public school teacher, to 12/31/10

Health

HB 2085 (Act 71) sets limits on requests for proposals from providers for QUEST contracts exceeding $100 mil & commencing after agency director’s terms expires

HB 2200, State Budget appropriates $2 million for community health centers statewide

HB 2774 amends certain QUEST benefits and prohibits DHS from spending Medicaid funds on programs not specifically related to Medicaid or not authorized by Legislature

SB 2469 appropriates $332,000 from Emergency & Budget Reserve Fund for emergency room services at Wai’anae Coast Comprehensive Health Center (WCCHC)

SCR178/SR79 urges Hawaii Health Systems Corp hospitals & clinics to accept medical student rotations from programs based at WCCHC and UH.

SCR 179 requests development of proposed legislation mandating size & extent of a managed care plan’s specialty network

Human Services

HB 1642 (Act 69) requires proposals for purchases of health & human services to be submitted by licensed providers and for exact amount to be expended by state

SB 2469, the “Rainy Day Fund” bill provides funding for many human services projects—including the following which help Wai’anae residents: Kupuna Care, Meals for the Elderly, adult dental, General Assistance disability benefits, Adult Friends for Youth, Legal Aid, child care subsidies, and domestic violence shelters

SB 2650 (Act 67) convenes task force to determine feasibility of DHS’ proposed “EPOD” reorganization involving office closures and personnel layoffs

Housing

HB 2318 establishes a $1 million Housing First Special Fund to implement programs (successful in other states), to provide stable housing for homeless people and help with related issues such as job training, employment and healthcare

SB 2469 appropriates $23 million for safety net services—including $200,000 for Shelter Plus Care, which gives rental assistance & support services to disabled persons

Congressional appropriations for FY’10, as submitted by Rep. Mazie Hirono, include funding for Maili Self-Help Housing

HCR 262 & SCR206 request establishment of Wai’anae Coast Homelessness Task Force to develop a comprehensive plan to address needs of homeless

Energy & Environment

HB 2239 ends exemption for dietary supplements in deposit beverage container law

HB 2644 applies solid waste disposal surcharge to waste that is shipped out-of-state

Consumer Protection

SB 2809 appropriates funds to reorganize Public Utilities Commission & Division of Consumer Advocacy, helping state transition to clean energy economy

SB 2837 (Act 35) revises requirements for licensing electricians and plumbers

Hawaiian

HB 1015 enables DHHL to begin construction on housing and other projects; establishes procedures for disposition of lands and extensions of leases, with 15% of revenue form extensions to be deposited into Native Hawaiian Rehabilitation Fund

HB 1818 requires Dept of Public Safety to establish a reintegration pilot program that combines cognitive behavioral theory with Native Hawaiian holistic interventions

HB 1665 prohibits selling public lands on which Hawaiian fishponds are located

HCR 50 requests study to establish tribal historic preservation office in DLNR and asks for audit of State Historic Preservation Division

Public Safety

HB 1987 establishes cause of action to abate illegal purchasing, selling, possession & setting off of fireworks; increases penalties for illegal use

HB 2583 establishes civil penalties and administrative fines for shark feeding, including impoundment & forfeiture of commercial marine vessels

HB 2692 (Act 119) requires civil defense to work with county civil defense agencies to prepare disaster preparedness plan for the Wai’anae Coast’s 44th & 45th House Districts

SB 2045 establishes class A, B & C felony sexual human trafficking and labor trafficking offenses and provides for prosecution of offenses

HCR223 requests a study on feasibility of using Lualualei Naval Rd as evacuation routed in event of emergency or natural disaster on Leeward Coast

Transportation

HB 2200 (Budget) includes $12.5 mil for construction on Farrington Hwy for congestion relief and safety improvements between Honokai Hale and Hakimo Rd; $3.5 mil for Farrington Hwy drainage improvements vicinity of Orange St, Makaha; $3.5 million for replacement of bridges on Farrington Hwy near Makaha Beach Park

HB 1190 (Act 104) requires county police departments to identify critical roadways and establish protocols to coordinate major accident investigations

Agriculture

HB 2421 (Act 73) provides initiatives & funds to promote energy and food self-sufficiency

HB 2832 authorizes OHA to seek funds for projects that increase cultivation of taro

Economic Development

SB2231 exempts electric vehicles & vehicle charging systems from general excise tax

SB 2840 (Act 68) requires at least 80% of workers on construction procurements to be Hawaii residents and provides sanctions for noncompliance

Military

HB 1900 (Act 88) recognizes designations of prisoner of war and missing in action as valid descriptions of casualty status and category classification for military personnel

HB 2061 establishes process by which family court can resolve custody and visitation issues for members of armed forces, reserves, and national guard whose duties require temporary absences

HB 2351 (Act 78) requires applicant for veteran’s license plate to include copy of most recent discharge or separation document that indicates honorable or general discharge

SB 2137 (Act 45) allows military personnel on active duty outside state to cancel or suspend health club contracts

SB 2139 (Act 27) requires Director of Veterans Services to act on behalf of deceased veterans found to be indigent at time of death and without surviving immediate family members to ensure burial or cremation and inurnment in a state veterans’ cemetery

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