May 9th, 2008

Final Reading Written Remarks for House Bill 2500, H.D.1, S.D.1, C.D.1 Relating to the State Budget

 

Representative Jon Riki Karamatsu

Final Reading Written Remarks

House Bill 2500, House Draft 1, Senate Draft 1, Conference Draft 1

Relating to the State Budget

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

 

            I rise in support.

 

            House Bill 2500 appropriates supplemental funds for the operating and capital costs of the Executive Branch for the fiscal year July 1, 2008, through June 20, 2009.  After strong economic growth in the mid-2000s, peaking with double-digit growth rates in fiscal year 2005 (16 percent) and 2006 (10.9 percent), Hawai'i's economy slowed sharply in 2006 and 2007.

 

            With considerably lower than projected general fund revenues available, this bill preserves essential health and safety funding in this supplemental budget.  Unfortunately, reductions were made to the Governor's supplemental budget through a combination of denying requests, making vacancy adjustments, and reducing the departments' general fund non-fixed cost "discretionary" budget appropriations.

 

            I would like to highlight some of the appropriations and investments that were included.  Investing in the aging infrastructure of our public schools was the primary focus.  For fiscal year 2008-2009, $310,193,000 was provided by the legislature to the Department of Education in General Obligation and General Obligation Reimbursable bond funds, including: $100,000 for whole school classroom renovations statewide; and $66,461,000 for school building repair and maintenance statewide.  The following are some of the capital improvement projects I supported for schools in or near my state representative district and non-profit educational institutions in the State of Hawai'i:

 

1.         Honowai Elementary School: The legislature appropriated $2,000,000 for fiscal             year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design, construction, and equipment for electrical system improvements; ground and site improvements; and equipment and appurtenances.

 

2.         Kaleiopu'u Elementary School: The legislature appropriated $85,000 for fiscal   year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design and construction for a covered walkway to the cafeteria and office area; ground and site improvements; and equipment and appurtenances.  In addition, the legislature appropriated $550,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design, construction, and equipment for electrical upgrades; ground and site improvements; and equipment and appurtenances.

 

3.         Waikele Elementary School: The legislature appropriated $100,000 for fiscal year         2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design and construction to expand the faculty parking lot; ground and site improvements; and equipment and appurtenances.

 

4.         Waipahu High School: The legislature appropriated $75,000 for fiscal year 2007-          2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design and construction for fencing; ground and site improvements; equipment and appurtenances.

 

5.         Children's Discovery Center: The legislature appropriated $125,000 for fiscal year         2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 and $300,000 for fiscal year 2008-2009 for construction for facility improvements at the Children's Discovery Center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawaii Revised Statutes.

 

6.         KCAA Preschools of Hawaii: The legislature appropriated $250,000 for fiscal year 2008-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for plans, design, and construction for the development of a new training center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawaii Revised Statutes.

 

            The legislature has taken note of the alarming state of some facilities within the University of Hawai'i system and provided $161,446,000 for fiscal year 2008-2009 by all means of financing for capital improvements in the university system.  The following are some of the capital improvement projects I supported for the University of Hawai'i system:

 

1.         University of Hawai'i system: The legislature appropriated $60,000,000 for fiscal           year 2008-2009 for system wide capital renewal, deferred maintenance, and health and safety measures.

 

2.         University of Hawai'i at Manoa: The legislature appropriated $8,500,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 and $35,883,000 for fiscal year 2008-2009 for plans, design, construction, and equipment for renovation and addition to the campus center complex.

 

3.         University of Hawai'i - West Oahu: The legislature appropriated $135,000,000 in          fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design, construction, and equipment for the development of the University of Hawai'i – West Oahu.  The project is to include ground and site improvements, construction of infrastructure and new facilities, and all project related costs.

 

            An efficient system of harbors and airports is vital to the flow of people and goods to, from, and within Hawaii.  The legislature provided an investment of $124,375,000 in revenue bond funds for harbor modernization projects and an additional $130,236,000 for airport modernization.  In order to maintain and improve our highway system, the legislature appropriated $183,066,000 by all means of financing for fiscal year 2008-2009.  The following are some of the transportation capital improvement projects I supported:

 

1.         Kamehameha Highway Improvements, Waipahu Street to Ka Uka Boulevard: The        legislature appropriated $150,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 and $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2008-2009 for land acquisition and construction for traffic operational and other improvement, including sidewalk, bikeway, highway lighting, drainage, and other improvements.  This project is deemed necessary to qualify for federal aid financing and/or reimbursement.

 

2.         Interstate Route H-1, Westbound Afternoon (P.M.) Contraflow: The legislature             appropriated $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design for a P.M. contraflow lane on interstate route H-1 from the vicinity of Radford Drive to the vicinity of Waikele.

 

3.         Ke'ehi Small Boat Harbor: The legislature appropriated $4,000,000 for fiscal year         2008-2009 for plans, design, and construction of a bulkhead, pier, pad, and storm water management system and utilities installation at Ke'ehi Small Boat Harbor to relocate Honolulu Marine, LLC from Hawai'i Community Development Authority property.

 

            The following are other capital improvement projects I supported that are located in or near my state representative district:

 

1.         Kunia Agricultural Park: The legislature appropriated $250,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for plans to develop Kunia Agricultural Park.

 

2.         Waipahu United Church of Christ: The legislature appropriated $250,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design and construction for improvements for a community center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawai'i Revised Statutes.

 

3.         American Box Car Racing International: The legislature appropriated $75,000 for          fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for plans, design, and construction for a youth facility.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawaii Revised Statutes.

 

4.         Friends of Waipahu Cultural Garden Park: The legislature appropriated $250,000         for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for construction for improvements at Hawai'i's Plantation Village.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawai'i Revised Statutes.

 

            The following are other capital improvement projects I supported that are located in the State of Hawai'i:

 

1.         Iolani Palace State Monument: The legislature appropriated $4,500,000 for fiscal          year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for construction for air conditioning, climate control, and related improvements to preserve historic and cultural artifacts.

 

2.         Lanakila Rehabilitation Center: The legislature appropriated $300,000 for fiscal             year 2007-2008 and reauthorized for fiscal year 2008-2009 for design and construction for renovation of the Lanakila Wahiawa center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawai'i Revised Statutes.

 

3.         Bishop Museum: The legislature appropriated 1,000,000 for fiscal year 2008-2009 for plans, design, and construction for repairs and maintenance and other related improvements at the Bishop Museum.

 

4.         Hawai'i Theatre Center: The legislature appropriated $250,000 for fiscal year 2007-2008 and reauthorized it for fiscal year 2008-2009 for construction for improvements to facilities owned by the Hawai'i Theatre Center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawai'i Revised Statutes.

 

5.         Japanese Cultural Center: The legislature appropriated $250,000 for construction          for repairs and improvements to the Japanese Cultural Center.  This project qualified as a grant, pursuant to Chapter 42F of the Hawai'i Revised Statutes.

 

            For the 2008 Legislative Session, I introduced House Bill 2323, which would establish within the beach restoration special fund a sub-account to be known as the resort beach restoration fund to be administered by the Department of Land and Natural Resources, into which shall be deposited general funds appropriated by the legislature and revenues from the tourism special fund, which receives moneys from the transient accommodations tax.  No funds would be released for expenditure from the resort beach restoration fund unless matched by non-state funds on at least a one-to-one basis.  Moneys in the resort beach restoration fund would be used to provide for the development and restoration of visitor area resort beaches, including maintenance of any improvements placed on the visitor area resort beach or in the nearshore waters, as determined by the department, including debt service on any capital expenditures projects and the contracting for services for those purposes.  Fortunately, the legislative money committees created a proviso in this state budget bill, appropriating $1,000,000 from the special fund for tourism (BED 113) for fiscal year 2008-2009 for beach restoration, provided that restoration projects on resort beaches shall be matched dollar-for-dollar from private sources and shall be on beaches with public access.  This beach restoration fund for resort beaches is to be administered by the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

 

            The legislature recognized that energy efficiency is an investment that pays off for itself and, provided $17,460,000 for energy conservation and efficiency projects throughout the State for fiscal year 2008-2009.

 

            The lack of affordable housing is a major concern of the legislature.  Appropriations to address this issue include a total infusion of $25,000,000 in general obligation bond funds into the Rental Housing Trust Fund and the Dwelling Unit Revolving Fund in order to finance additional affordable housing.

 

            Given substantially lower than projected general fund growth for fiscal year 2007-2008, the legislature has crafted an honest, responsible, and sustainable supplemental budget.  In total, this supplemental budget appropriates $10,789,367,663 in fiscal year 2008-2009.  Specifically in regarding general fund appropriations, this budget appropriates $5,318,212,5547 in fiscal year 2008-2009.

 

            Thank you.

Final Reading Written Remarks on S.B. 2456, S.D. 2, H.D. 1, C.D. 1 Relating to Harassment

 

Representative Jon Riki Karamatsu

Final Reading Written Remarks

Senate Bill 2456, Senate Draft 2, House Draft 1, Conference Draft 1

Relating to Harassment (Harassment by Impersonation)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

 

            I rise in support.

 

            Since the 2005 Legislative Session, I have been working to create a new law to discourage impersonation.  The reasoning is that people are being harassed by individuals impersonating as them, especially on the Internet.  It has already happened to a friend of mine.  The act of harassing by impersonation can cause irreparable damage by ruining one's reputation, placing one in fear of one's safety, and inflicting emotional distress.

 

            Senate Bill 2456 is the companion to my House Bill 2319, which proposed to add computer communication as a form of nonconsensual contact in the offense of harassment by stalking.  However, Senate Bill 2456, Senate Draft 2, House Draft 1 was amended by the House Judiciary Committee to include the policy goal of discouraging impersonation, which is from another bill of mine, House Bill 2320.

 

            This measure would create a new section in the Hawai'i Revised Statutes to include "harassment by impersonation."  Under this definition, "A person commits the offense of harassment by impersonation if that person poses as another person, without the express authorization of that person, and makes or causes to be made, either directly or indirectly, a transmission of any personal information of the person to another by any oral statement, any written statement, or any statement conveyed by any electronic means, with the intent to harass, annoy, or alarm any person."  Harassment by impersonation would be a misdemeanor.

 

            Thank you.

 

Final Reading Written Remarks for S.B. 2803,S.D. 1, H.D. 1, C.D. 1 Relating to Personal Information

Representative Jon Riki Karamatsu

Final Reading Written Remarks

Senate Bill 2803, Senate Draft 1, House Draft 1, Conference Draft 1

Relating to Personal Information (Identity Theft)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

 

            I rise in support.

 

            The purpose of this bill is to protect the personal information collected and maintained by state and county agencies through the implementation of the recommendations of the "Hawaii Identity Theft Task Force Report" of December 2007.  I served on the task force, and through this bill we hope to reduce identity theft of personal information held by the state and county agencies.  The bill:

 

(1)  Requires each state and county agency designate an employee by September 1, 2009, to ensure the agency's compliance with requirements relating to the security of personal information;

 

(2)  Establishes the Information and Privacy Security Council to be placed administratively within the Department of the Accounting and General Services and authorizes the Comptroller to establish support positions.  By January 1, 2009, the council shall submit to the legislature a report of the council's assessment and recommendations on initiatives to mitigate the negative impacts of identity theft incidents on individuals.  No later than June 30, 2009, the council shall develop guidelines to be considered by government agencies in deciding whether, how, and when a government agency shall inform affected individuals of the loss, disclosure, or security breach of personal information that can contribute to identify theft.  The council shall review the individual annual reports submitted by government agencies, pursuant to section 487N-C, Hawaii Revised Statutes and submit a summary report to the legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the regular session of 2010 and each year thereafter.  The summary report shall include the council's findings, significant trends, and recommendations to protect personal information used by government agencies.  The initial report to the legislature also shall include proposed legislation to amend section 487N-2, Hawaii revised Statutes or any other law that the council deems necessary to conform to the guidelines established.  No later than March 31, 2009, the council shall identify best practice relating to automated tools, training, processes, and applicable standards.  No later than July 31, 2009, the best practice identified by the council shall be posted on each government agency's website in a manner that is readily accessible by employees of the government agency;

 

(3)  Makes effective January 1, 2009, any government agency that maintains one or more personal information systems shall submit to the council an annual report on the existence and character of each personal information system added or eliminated since the agency's previous annual report.  The annual report shall be submitted no later than September 30 of each year;


(4)  Requires that by
December 31, 2008, the information privacy and security council established under section 487N-A, Hawaii Revised Statutes, in consultation with the information and communication services division of the Department of Accounting and General Services, and the information technology divisions of the respective counties, shall develop recommended practices and procedures to provide guidance to information technology managers in all government agencies relating to the security of laptops, removable data storage devices, and communication devices used to remotely access applications installed on state or county networks.  The council shall include recommendations on best practices and standards for protecting personal information that may be used with, stored on, or transmitted by the foregoing devices;

 

(5)  Makes effective September 1, 2008, any government agency that contracts with third parties to provide support services on behalf of the agency that requires access to personal information; or is requested to provide access to social security numbers and other personal information by a credit bureau or similar financial reporting organization,

shall include, in all new or renewed contracts, provisions to protect the use and disclosure of personal information administered by the agency;

 

(6)  Mandates that no later than September 1, 2008, all government agencies that collect, maintain, or disseminate documents containing personal information that are subject to disclosure pursuant to section 92F-12, Hawaii Revised Statutes, shall develop and implement a plan to protect and redact personal information, specifically social security numbers, contained in any existing hardcopy documents prior to making the documents available for public inspection.  Consumer reporting agencies, as defined by 15 U.S.C. section 1681a(f), which operate under 15 U.S.C. section 1681 et seq., shall continue to have access to personal information, including the nine digit social security numbers as the legislature finds that such access is necessary for criminal background checks, credit reporting for financial transactions and other similar purposes.  Agency plans shall be consistent with these purposes;

 

(7)  Requires that no later than December 1, 2008, all government agencies that collect, maintain, or disseminate documents containing personal information that are subject to disclosure pursuant to section 92F-12, Hawaii Revised Statutes, shall develop a written plan to eliminate the unnecessary collection and use of social security numbers;

 

(8)  Establishes that no later than January 1, 2010, the lead state and county government agencies that have primary responsibility for human resource functions shall develop and distribute to the appropriate government agencies written guidelines detailing recommended practices to minimize unauthorized access to personal information and personal information systems relating to personnel recruitment, background checks, testing, employee retirement and health benefits, time reporting and payroll issues;

 

(9)  Mandates that no later than September 1, 2009, all government agencies shall develop a written agency policy relating to notification of any security breach of personal information; and

 

(10)  Establishes no later than July 1, 2008, within the office of the auditor, the identity theft task force working group, to provide continuity from the work of the identity theft task force, established pursuant to Act 65, Session Laws of Hawaii 2005, as amended by Act 140, Session Laws of Hawaii 2006; and assist in the transition and development of recommendations and best practices related to personal information.  The working group shall include five members of the identity theft task force, the auditor, and the consultant retained by the auditor for the work of the identity theft task force.  The identity theft task force working group shall cease to exist on June 30, 2009.

 

            Thank you.

Final Reading Written Remarks on H.B. 2954, S.D. 1 Relating Towing Companies

Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu

Final Reading Written Remarks

House Bill 2954, Senate Draft 1

Prohibits a towing company from charging the owner of a vehicle hooked up for towing if the owner of the vehicle appears on the scene.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

 

            I rise in support.

 

            I want to thank Speaker Emeritus Joseph M. Souki for inserting language into this bill to address a concern of a resident of Hawai'i who contacted me explaining how he disliked the fact that a towing company can charge an owner of a vehicle that is hooked up for towing even if the owner of the vehicle appears on the scene.  This bill would amend the current law by prohibiting a towing company from charging the owner of a vehicle hooked up for towing if the owner of the vehicle appears on the scene.  In the case of a difficult hookup, meaning an above or below ground hookup in a multilevel facility, a towing surcharge of $30 is applicable.

 

            In addition, this bill encourages towing companies to be open twenty-four hours a day in a county with a population greater than five hundred thousand by allowing an overtime charge of $15 when the tow occurs between the hours of six o'clock P.M. and six o'clock A.M., from Monday through Thursday and from six o'clock P.M. Friday to six o'clock A.M. Monday.

 

            Any towing company engaged in towing in a county with a population greater than five hundred thousand shall not be entitled to any overtime charge if towing services to consumers are not offered twenty-four hours per day every day of the week; provided that a towing company shall file their hours of operation with the police department in a county with a population greater than five hundred thousand.

 

            Thank you.