Report Title:

Legislative budget office

Description:

Repeals the office of the legislative analyst and the joint legislative budget committee and creates, in their place, the legislative budget office. Appropriates funds. (SB880 HD2)

THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

880

TWENTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2003

H.D. 2

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

RELATING TO THE LEGISLATURE.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. One of the primary functions of the legislature is to develop sound economic and fiscal policies for the State. The complexities of legislative decision-making and state budgeting require lawmakers to be provided with current and accurate fiscal data and analyses to aid in their lawmaking responsibilities. To address the legislature's need to be able to base policy decisions on well-researched information and analysis, Act 347, Session Laws of Hawaii 1990, was enacted to provide the legislature with its own separate fiscal policy office.

Since the legislature only meets four months out of the year, it has come to rely heavily on the use of session-only staff. As a result, the legislature has been at a disadvantage in ensuring that approved appropriations are executed in compliance with legislative policy. This requires constant training and supervision of the staff.

Other states have established nonpartisan, highly specialized legislative fiscal analysis offices, in addition to the professional staffs of each chamber's fiscal committee.

The purpose of this Act is to repeal the office of the legislative analyst and the joint legislative budget committee, replace them with the legislative budget office, and provide funds necessary to implement the legislative budget office.

SECTION 2. The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"CHAPTER

LEGISLATIVE BUDGET OFFICE

-1 Definitions. As used in this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise:

"Director" means the director of the legislative budget office.

"House" means the state house of representatives.

"Fiscal committee" means the house committee on finance or the senate ways and means committee, or their equivalent committees.

"Office" means the legislative budget office.

"Senate" means the state senate.

-2 Legislative budget office; duties. (a) There is established the legislative budget office whose primary duty shall be to provide the legislature with information, including:

(1) Information with respect to the budget, appropriation bills, and other bills authorizing or providing new budget authority or tax expenditures;

(2) Information with respect to revenues, receipts, estimated future revenues and receipts, and changing revenue conditions; and

(3) Related information as the members of the legislature may request.

(b) The office shall, to the extent practicable, consult with and assist the fiscal committees in analyzing the budgetary or financial impact of any proposed legislation that may have:

(1) A significant budgetary impact on State or county governments;

(2) A significant financial impact on the private sector; or

(3) A significant employment impact on the private sector.

(c) The office shall, from time to time, submit to the fiscal committees further reports as may be necessary or appropriate to provide the fiscal committees with information, data, and analyses for the performance of their duties and functions.

(d) On or before January 15th of each year, the office, after consultation with the appropriate committees of the house and senate, shall submit to the legislature a report listing:

(1) All programs and activities funded during the fiscal year ending June 30th of that calendar year for which authorizations for appropriations have been enacted for that fiscal year; and

(2) All programs and activities for which authorizations for appropriations have been enacted for the fiscal year ending June 30th of that calendar year, but for which no authorizations for appropriations have been enacted for the fiscal year beginning July 1st of that calendar year.

-3 Director; assistant director. (a) The legislative budget office shall be headed by a director. There shall be an assistant director who shall perform such duties as may be assigned by the director and, during the absence or incapacity or during a vacancy in that office, shall act as director.

(b) The director shall be appointed by the house speaker and the senate president without regard to political affiliation and solely on the basis of the person's fitness to perform the director's duties. The assistant director shall be appointed by the director.

(c) The term of office of the director shall be four years and shall expire on the third Wednesday in January of the year preceding each gubernatorial election. The person appointed as director to fill a vacancy prior to expiration of a term shall serve only for the unexpired portion of that term. The person serving as director at the expiration of a term may continue to serve until a successor is appointed. The assistant director shall serve until the expiration of the term of office of the director who appointed the assistant director, and until the assistant director's successor is appointed, unless sooner removed by the director.

(d) The director may be removed by either the house or the senate by resolution.

(e) The director may employ clerical and technical employees as may be necessary to carry out the duties and functions of the office. All personnel of the office shall be appointed without regard to political affiliation and solely on the basis of their fitness to perform the duties and responsibilities of the personnel of the office. The director shall appoint and fix the compensation of such personnel. For purposes of pay (other than pay of the director and assistant director) and employment benefits, rights, and privileges, all personnel of the office shall be treated as if they were employees of the house of representatives.

(f) Effective July 1, 2003, the salary of the director shall be $ per year, and the salary of the assistant director shall be $ per year.

-4 Relationship to departments, agencies, and other branches of government. (a) All departments, agencies, and educational institutions of the executive and judicial branches, the office of Hawaiian affairs, and the University of Hawaii shall comply with requests of the legislative budget office for information, data, estimates, and statistics on their funding, revenue operations, and other affairs.

(b) The comptroller, the director of finance, the director of taxation, the administrative director of the courts, the administrator of the office of Hawaiian affairs, and the president of the University of Hawaii shall provide the legislative budget office with full and free access to information, data, estimates, and statistics in the possession of their respective department on the state budget, revenue expenditures, and tax revenue and expenditures.

-5 Revenue estimates. For purposes of analyzing revenue-related legislation in which income, general excise, use, and other state taxes are considered or enacted in any legislative session, the office shall rely on the revenue estimates provided to it by the council on revenues.

-6 Confidentiality. With respect to information obtained under section 4, the director shall maintain the same level of confidentiality as is required by law of the department, agency, establishment, or regulatory agency or commission from which it is obtained. Officers and employees of the office shall be subject to the same statutory penalties for unauthorized disclosure or use of information as officers or employees of the department, agency, establishment, or regulatory agency or commission from which the information was obtained."

SECTION 3. Chapter 21F, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is repealed.

SECTION 4. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $ or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2003-2004 to establish and carry out the duties and functions of the legislative budget office, as set forth in this Act.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the legislature for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2003.