H.C.R. NO.














urging the national football league to continue its relationship with the state of hawaii through its annual pro bowl game at aloha stadium.




     WHEREAS,  although Hawaii has hosted the National Football League's (NFL) annual all-star game, known as the Pro Bowl, continuously since 1980, the current contract between the NFL and the State of Hawaii for the Pro Bowl ends after next year's game, the 30th at Aloha Stadium; and


     WHEREAS, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has indicated that while he wants to keep the NFL's relationship with the State of Hawaii strong, there is no guarantee the Pro Bowl, an annual tradition, will maintain its long history with Hawaii and continue to be played at Aloha Stadium; and


     WHEREAS, while the NFL receives an annual subsidy of $4.5 million from the Hawaii Tourism Authority to host the Pro Bowl at Aloha Stadium, other tourism-oriented cities such as Orlando and San Diego have inquired into giving the NFL greater subsidies to hold the Pro Bowl in their venue; and


     WHEREAS, Commissioner Goodell has indicated that he is not comfortable with maintaining the status quo with regard to the Pro Bowl and believes that the NFL can do things better and with a different twist, even anticipating rotating the game among a host of different cities, with Hawaii remaining an integral part of such a plan; and


     WHEREAS, while the NFL enjoys benefits from holding its Pro Bowl in Hawaii, Hawaii has also benefited from the Pro Bowl, which has grown into a significant economic asset and partnership for the state and the local community, significantly affecting Hawaii's tourism market in February, with approximately 20,808 tourists visiting Hawaii to attend the Pro Bowl annually, resulting in direct spending of over $28.08 million, and $2.72 million in state taxes; and


     WHEREAS, there is widespread support of the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, not only from its residents, including Hawaii's military personnel, but also from the thousands of visitors who escape from the frigid mainland winter to attend the Pro Bowl in Hawaii's warm, tropical weather; and


     WHEREAS, numerous NFL fans, which include both residents and visitors alike, have shown their support for the Pro Bowl, by among other things, attending and supporting numerous charitable events held by the NFL throughout Pro Bowl Week, and filling Aloha Stadium with sold-out crowds every Pro Bowl Sunday for the past 29 years; and


     WHEREAS, the NFL all-stars attending the Pro Bowl each year have had a positive impact on local charities and social services which benefited from player appearances, and the NFL's numerous community outreach programs (i.e., the NFL and the local Boys and Girls Club leaders broke ground in Nanakuli for a Hawaii NFL Youth Education Town, an after-school facility) and, a few years ago, the NFL provided a matching fund of up to $200,000, under its NFL Grassroots Program, to refurbish Roosevelt High School's stadium; and


     WHEREAS, a straw poll of NFL players and their families conducted by the Honolulu Star-Bulletin revealed that the players and their families enjoy their Pro Bowl experience in Hawaii and would like the Pro Bowl to stay right here in the islands; and


     WHEREAS, that same poll found that NFL players and their families do not have an intense interest in packing up the 'carnival' and going to another town or time zone, exhibiting the NFL players' commitment to keeping the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, a fact noted by Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jeff Garcia who stated, "Coming to Hawaii is something to play for.  Players like to come here because it's like a reward; to get away and experience something new"; and


     WHEREAS, the NFL Players Association also took a survey of NFL players that showed that 80 percent of the players want to keep the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, with quarterback Derek Anderson of the Cleveland Browns stating in that survey, "I love Hawaii.  I don't know if I'd want to be in Detroit this time of year to play in the game"; and


     WHEREAS, the NFL Pro Bowl is the only successful professional game in the State of Hawaii which has been warmly welcomed and embraced by the people of Hawaii, NFL all-star players, tourists throughout the world, and military personnel, and the Twenty-fourth Legislature of the State of Hawaii wishes to express its heartfelt Aloha, appreciation, and support of this event; now, therefore,


     BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the Twenty-fourth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2008, the Senate concurring, that the Legislature of the State of Hawaii supports the NFL's Pro Bowl game and urges the NFL to continue to hold its annual all-star event at Hawaii's Aloha Stadium; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Commissioner of the National Football League, National Football League Players Association, Governor of the State of Hawaii, Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu, Director of the Hawaii Tourism Authority and the Aloha Stadium Authority.









Report Title: 

Expresses the Legislature's support for the Pro Bowl and urges the NFL to keep the Pro Bowl in Hawaii.