STAND. COM. REP. NO.2620
RE: S.B. No. 2821
Honorable Robert Bunda
President of the Senate
Twenty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2002
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred S.B. No. 2821 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO COMPENSATION OF CRIME VICTIMS,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose of this measure is to increase the allowable compensation awarded to crime victims for medical expenses.
More specifically, the measure provides that, if compensable, medical expenses are in excess of the compensation award ceiling of $10,000, the maximum award is limited to $20,000 or the amount of the compensable medical expenses.
Your Committee finds that the vast majority of states have higher compensation award ceilings: these range from $15,000 to a high of $150,000 in Washington State, with no statutory ceiling imposed in New York. In contrast, only eight states, including Hawaii, have a $10,000 award ceiling. Your Committee believes that the State's present compensation award ceiling of $10,000 is woefully inadequate to address cases involving catastrophic medical care and should be raised in cases involving compensable medical expenses that are in excess of $10,000.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Clarifying that, in such instance, the compensation award shall be limited to the lower of either $20,000 or the actual amount of the compensable medical expenses; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive changes for purposes of style, clarity, and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2821, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2821, S.D. 1.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,
BRIAN T. TANIGUCHI, Chair