Legislative Hearings; Studies and Reports
Requires any report of a study or an audit made by an executive department or agency, and by the legislative reference bureau, auditor, judiciary, or office of Hawaiian affairs, to be submitted to the clerk of each house, senate president, speaker of the house, chairs of the appropriate subject matter committee of each house, and the legislative reference bureau library. Requires a public hearing or informational briefing, except if waived by the senate president or speaker of the house of representatives. Excludes certain routine reports.
TWENTY-FIFTH LEGISLATURE, 2009
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO LEGISLATIVE HEARINGS AND PROCEDURES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. Chapter 21, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new part to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:
"Part . HEARINGS ON REPORTS
§21- Procedures for consideration of reports. (a) Reports to the legislature of studies and audits conducted by:
(1) The executive departments and agencies;
(2) The auditor;
(3) The judiciary;
(3) The legislative reference bureau; or
(4) The office of Hawaiian affairs,
that are requested by a resolution or required by statute or by an Act shall be submitted, at a minimum, to the clerk of each house, to the president of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives, the chair of the applicable subject matter committee of each chamber, and the Legislative Reference Bureau library. Submission of reports under this subsection shall also comply with the requirements of section 93-16.
(b) The respective chairs of the committees to whom a report is submitted under subsection (a) shall conduct a public hearing or informational briefing on the report during the legislative session or during the legislative interim in which the report is submitted within one year of receipt. Waivers for a public hearing or briefing may be granted by the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives, as appropriate; provided that the reasons for granting any waiver shall be posted on the legislature's website and publicly noticed at the capitol.
§21- Applicability; reports excluded. This part shall not apply to annual reports or reports of a routine nature as prepared by executive departments, boards, or agencies; provided that the chair of any committee shall not be precluded from holding a public hearing or informational briefing on a report."
SECTION 2. Chapter 21, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by designating sections 21-1 to 21-19 as follows:
"PART I. INVESTIGATIVE COMMITTEES"
SECTION 3. Section 21-1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§21-1 Purpose. The purpose of
chapter] part is to establish procedures governing
legislative investigating committees to provide for the creation and operation
of legislative investigating committees in a manner [ which] that will
enable them to perform properly the powers and duties vested in them, including
the conduct of hearings, in a fair and impartial manner, consistent with
protection of the constitutional rights of persons called to testify at such
hearings and preservation of the public good."
SECTION 4. Section 21-2, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§21-2 Definitions. As used in
"Hearing" means any meeting in the course of an investigatory proceeding, other than a preliminary conference or interview at which no testimony is taken under oath, conducted by an investigating committee for the purpose of taking testimony or receiving other evidence. A hearing may be open to the public or closed to the public.
"Investigating committee" means any of the following which are authorized to compel the attendance and testimony of witnesses or the production of books, records, papers, and documents for the purpose of securing information on a specific subject for the use of the legislature:
(1) A standing or special or select committee or committee of the whole of either house of the legislature;
(2) A joint committee of both houses;
(3) An authorized subcommittee of a legislative committee; and
(4) Any body created by law, the members of which may include nonlegislators.
"Public hearing" means any hearing open to the public, or the proceedings of which are made available to the public."
SECTION 5. Section 21-15, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsections (a) and (b) to read as follows:
"§21-15 Penalties. (a) A person
guilty of contempt under this [
chapter] part shall be fined not
more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year or both.
(b) If any investigating committee fails in
any material respect to comply with the requirements of this [
any person subject to a subpoena or a subpoena duces tecum who is injured by
the failure shall be relieved of any requirement to attend the hearing for
which the subpoena was issued or, if present, to testify or produce evidence
therein; and the failure shall be a complete defense in any proceeding against
the person for contempt or other punishment."
SECTION 6. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 7. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.