STAND. COM. REP. NO.3056
RE: H.B. No. 2837
Honorable Robert Bunda
President of the Senate
Twenty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2002
State of Hawaii
Your Committees on Water, Land, Energy and Environment and Commerce, Consumer Protection and Housing, to which was referred H.B. No. 2837, H.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO ENERGY,"
beg leave to report as follows:
The purposes of this measure are to require the Auditor to contract with an independent consultant to conduct a statewide energy audit, to establish scope of the audit, and to appropriate an unspecified amount from the public utilities special fund for fiscal year 2002-2003.
Testimony in support of this measure was received from the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism, Consumer Advocate, County of Hawaii Department of Research and Development, County of Maui Energy Office, Hawaii Renewable Energy Alliance, Sierra Club Hawai`i Chapter, and Life of the Land. The Public Utilities Commission and Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc., submitted comments.
Your Committees find that there is general support for such an audit, given the complexities and the changing nature of energy production and use in Hawaii. Your Committees have heard a number of concerns raised regarding the scope and the cost of such an audit, and believe these are valid concerns in such an important undertaking.
Your Committees have also heard that the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), of which the State is a member, has established the Energy Project, which offers state legislatures assistance focused on this subject matter. The NCSL Energy Project has completed or is in the process of conducting energy audits for Montana and Rhode Island and would be available to conduct an audit for Hawaii at a reasonable cost and within the time period specified by this measure.
Your Committees believe that the expertise and experience NCSL could bring to such an audit would be valuable from both a state perspective and within a national context.
Your Committees have amended this measure to:
(1) Require the Auditor to contract with the NCSL to conduct the audit;
(2) Appropriate $50,000 from general funds for the audit;
(3) Delay the effective date for the purposes of further discussion; and
(4) Make technical, nonsubstantive amendments.
As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Water, Land, Energy and Environment and Commerce, Consumer Protection and Housing that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 2837, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 2837, H.D. 1, S.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Water, Land, Energy and Environment and Commerce, Consumer Protection and Housing,
RON MENOR, Chair
LORRAINE R. INOUYE, Chair