Appropriates funds to be added to the base budget request of the University of Hawaii at Manoa for agricultural programs and research. (HB1287 CD1)
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TWENTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2001
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO AGRICULTURE.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that for Hawaii to be competitive globally, it must diversify its economic base beyond reliance on tourism and revenues provided by the federal government. A revived state agricultural industry holds the promise of not only diversifying Hawaii's economy, but also preserving the green space and lifestyle that Hawaii's citizens and visitors value.
The legislature further finds that diversified agriculture is gaining value and can become a significant component of the State's economy. Sixty-four per cent of the farm-gate value of agriculture in Hawaii in 1999 was derived from crops other than sugarcane and pineapple. By comparison, only twenty-seven per cent of the farm-gate value in the 1980s was attributable to diversified agriculture.
The legislature further finds that the University of Hawaii college of tropical agriculture and human resources (UH-CTAHR) is engaged in several areas of research and outreach that already have contributed materially to the resurgence of agriculture in Hawaii. Among UH-CTAHR's contributions to the State's agricultural industry are:
(1) Identifying and developing high-value food and fiber products so that Hawaii can stay competitive in a global market;
(2) Research that advances agricultural biotechnology, an industry that has the potential to bring billions of dollars to the State's economy; and
(3) Creating and encouraging the adoption of environmentally sound agricultural practices such as "bioremediation" which allows for cleanup of sites contaminated by heavy metals.
The legislature further finds that more work needs to done to develop high-value products including:
(1) New and improved plant varieties;
(2) Effective and environmentally sound pest, disease, and nutrient management systems;
(3) New and improved bioprocess technologies;
(4) More sophisticated market information systems;
(5) Plant varieties that are resistant to disease and tolerant to pesticides and which produce high-value chemicals, fragrances, vaccines, or specific nutrients;
(6) Flowers with engineered colors;
(7) Plants resistant to environmental stress;
(8) Fruits that ripen on demand; and
(9) Technologies that implement bioremediation to solve environmental problems.
To sustain Hawaii's diverse yet fragile ecosystems, it is important that sound agricultural, land, and water use practices be developed. There is also a need for more comprehensive land and water use analyses to help shape policies to sustain Hawaii's precious environment.
The purpose of this Act is to appropriate funds to the University of Hawaii to enable UH-CTAHR to conduct these crucial research and outreach activities. The appropriations in this Act reflect funds over and above the funds appropriated by the legislature for the University of Hawaii in the executive budget.
SECTION 2. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $500,000 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2001-2002 and the sum of $500,000 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2002-2003 as follows:
(1) $200,000 per year for the continued development of high-value agricultural products and a breeding program to provide new agricultural products;
(2) $200,000 per year for the continued development of the agricultural biotechnology initiative; and
(3) $100,000 per year for the creation and adoption of agricultural management practices that protect Hawaii's environment;
provided that the sums appropriated in this Act shall reflect funds over and above the funds appropriated by the legislature to the University of Hawaii in the executive budget.
The sums appropriated shall be expended by the University of Hawaii for the purposes of this Act.
SECTION 3. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2001.