Agri. Water Syst; Estab.

Establishes a separate agricultural water supply and delivery
system under the board of agriculture for the farms in upcountry

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                H.B. NO.           
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  Findings and purpose.  The legislature finds
 2 that the leeward slopes of the Haleakala Crater that make up the
 3 upcountry region on Maui is best suited for the commercial
 4 production of several agricultural crops that are unique or
 5 originated in this region.  These are the Maui onion, protea, and
 6 persimmon.  The legislature also finds that the region is
 7 impacted by severe droughts causing serious interruption to the
 8 water supply over long periods of time.  With increased emphasis
 9 on the development of diversified agricultural crops in the
10 conversion of the Hawaiian agriculture industry out of sugar, it
11 is the opportune time to provide infrastructure improvements to
12 this proven agricultural region.
13      The purpose of this Act is to establish a separate
14 agricultural water supply and delivery system under the board of
15 agriculture for the farms in the upcountry region.  To make
16 optimal use of this farming region, an agricultural water system
17 is necessary for the economic and social benefit of the people of
18 Hawaii and that such an undertaking is in the public interest.
19      SECTION 2.  Powers.  Notwithstanding any law to the

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 1 contrary, the board of agriculture, in addition to any other
 2 powers granted, shall have the powers to administer the
 3 provisions of this Act.  The board shall have the power to
 4 conduct surveys, studies, and engineering for the construction of
 5 water facilities to adequately serve the quantity of agricultural
 6 water demand to the region.  It shall also have the power to
 7 operate, maintain, and improve the system, including setting,
 8 adjusting, and collecting of water tolls in order to defray the
 9 cost of operation and to make the system self-sufficient, except
10 as provided in section 3 of this Act.  It shall further have the
11 power to contract with other government agencies for the
12 construction or financing of the system.
13      The board of agriculture shall have the power of eminent
14 domain to acquire the necessary easements, rights-of-way, and
15 real property for diverting, conveying, pumping, storing,
16 distributing, and transmitting agricultural water for
17 agricultural uses and for such other purposes as may properly
18 fall within the scope of its activities in creating, managing,
19 controlling, operating, and maintaining the water system.  The
20 power of eminent domain shall be exercised in the manner and
21 under the procedure provided by chapter 101.  It shall also have
22 the power to adopt rules as may be necessary pursuant to chapter
23 91, for the purpose of carrying out this Act.

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 1      SECTION 3.  Development period.  The board of agriculture
 2 shall fix a development period for the construction of the system
 3 facilities authorized by this Act, not to exceed ten years from
 4 and including the first calendar year in which agricultural water
 5 is first delivered for the purposes of this Act.  During this
 6 development period, the board of agriculture shall annually
 7 adjust and fix water tolls to be charged, so that the cost of
 8 operation and maintenance of the system may be subsidized through
 9 legislative appropriations and through government grants, loans,
10 or reimbursements as may be made available from government
11 entities.
12      SECTION 4.  Irrigation systems account.  There is
13 established a special account in the irrigation system revolving
14 fund under section 167-22, Hawaii Revised Statutes, and in the
15 irrigation water development special fund under section 167-22.5,
16 Hawaii Revised Statutes.  The moneys from these accounts shall be
17 expended upon warrants drawn by the comptroller for expenses
18 directly attributable to the cost of the system.
19      Notwithstanding any provision of this Act or any other law
20 to the contrary, it is expressly provided that, in the event that
21 it is found possible to secure federal funds made available under
22 any act of Congress to be expended in connection with or for the
23 construction of this project, the board of agriculture may enter

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                                     H.B. NO.           

 1 into such undertaking with the proper agencies of the federal
 2 government, agree to such conditions, perform such other acts and
 3 terms as may be necessary as a condition to securing the funding.
 4      SECTION 5.  There is appropriated out of the general
 5 revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $100,000, or so much
 6 thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 1999-2000, and the
 7 same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year
 8 2000-2001, to carry out the purposes of this Act.
 9      SECTION 6.  The sum appropriated shall be expended by the
10 department of agriculture for the purposes of this Act.
11      SECTION 7.  If any provision of this Act, or the application
12 thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the
13 invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of
14 the Act which can be given effect without the invalid provision
15 or application, and to this end the provisions of this Act are
16 severable.
17      SECTION 8.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 1999.
19                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________