THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

671

TWENTY-SIXTH LEGISLATURE, 2011

S.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

Proposed

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO ETHICS.

 

 

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

 


SECTION 1. Section 84-11, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"84-11 Gifts. (a) No legislator or employee shall solicit, accept, or receive, directly or indirectly, or facilitate the solicitation on behalf of another person, any gift, whether in the form of money, service, loan, travel, entertainment, hospitality, thing, or promise, or in any other form, under circumstances in which it can reasonably be inferred that the gift is intended to influence the legislator or employee in the performance of the legislator's or employee's official duties or is intended as a reward for any official action on the legislator's or employee's part[.]; provided that this subsection shall not apply to the receipt by a legislator or employee of a gift that does not exceed $200 in value from an entity, or any principal working in the principal's official capacity for that same entity, so long as the value of the gifts received from that entity or principal does not exceed $            in the aggregate in any calendar year.

(b) Except as provided in subsection (c), no legislator or employee shall knowingly accept a gift, directly or indirectly, in excess of $200 if the gift:

(1) Is from an entity, or any of its principals working in their official capacities, that the legislator or employee knows or has reason to know:

(A) Has executed, or seeks to execute, business of any kind with the legislator or employee;

(B) Has engaged in an activity that is directly affected by the legislator's or employee's official duties;

(C) Has a financial interest that may be affected substantially and materially, in a manner distinguishable from the public generally, by the performance or nonperformance of the legislator's or employee's official duties; or

(D) Is a registered lobbyist with respect to matters within the jurisdiction of the legislator's or employee's official duties;

(2) Would reasonably impair, or give the reasonable appearance of impairing, the impartiality and independent judgment of the legislator or employee; or

(3) Would reasonably lead the legislator or employee to believe that the gift is designed to impair the impartiality and independent judgment of the legislator or employee.

(c) This section shall not apply to gifts to a legislator or employee for:

(1) Gifts of food or beverages;

(2) Ceremonial gifts, awards, or other gifts that are not in excess of $            and are for informational, educational, or appreciative value;

(3) Reasonable expenses for food, travel, lodging, or scheduled entertainment of a legislator or employee in return for participation on a panel or a speaking engagement, if the expenses are associated with the panel or speaking engagement; provided that if the expenses are to be paid by a registered lobbyist and are anticipated to exceed $500, the legislator or employee shall notify the legislator's presiding officer or employee's supervisor prior to the meeting;

(4) Reasonable expenses for food, travel, lodging, or scheduled entertainment for attendance at a conference that has been approved by the legislator's presiding officer or employee's supervisor;

(5) Tickets or free admission from a person sponsoring or conducting an event, as a courtesy to the legislator or employee to attend a charitable, cultural, political, or community event; provided that if the value of the ticket exceeds $200 the receipt of the ticket shall be reported pursuant to section 84-11.5;

(6) Any specific gift or class of gifts exempt from subsection (b) by the ethics commission upon a written finding that:

(A) Acceptance of the gift or class of gifts would not be detrimental to the impartial conduct of government; or

(B) The gift is purely personal and private in nature;

(7) A gift from:

(A) An individual related to the legislator or employee by blood or marriage;

(B) Any other individual who is a member of the household of the legislator or employee; or

(C) Any other individual whose association with the legislator or employee can be reasonably attributed to a non-legislative capacity;

(8) Honoraria, as provided in subsection (d);

(9) An invitation offered by any United States city, county, or state government to visit and observe governmental and cultural events and projects; provided that the invitation has been approved by the legislator's presiding officer or employee's supervisor prior to the visit; and

(10) Acceptance of the offer of food, a full meal, and beverages from nonprofits, individuals, businesses, and other entities at a charitable or community event where the value of the food does not exceed $100.

(d) Except as provided in subsection (c), a legislator or employee shall not accept any honoraria or any compensation related to the legislator's or employee's official duties if the payer of the honoraria has an interest that may be affected substantially and materially by the performance or nonperformance of the legislator's or employee's official duties.

For the purposes of this subsection, the following shall not be considered honoraria:

(1) Expenses for meals, travel, and lodging, and reasonable and verifiable expenses for care of a child or dependent adult that are actually incurred;

(2) Permissible gifts pursuant to subsection (c);

(3) Anything of value that is otherwise reported or reportable as a campaign expenditure; or

(4) Any public appearance or speech by a legislator or employee on a topic or issue that is not related to the legislator's or employee's official duties.

(e) Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit, approve, or prohibit the proper jurisdiction of the ethics commission."

SECTION 2. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 3. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 



 

Report Title:

Ethics; Gifts

 

Description:

Establishes prohibitions and exceptions regarding gifts to legislator or employees. (Proposed SD1)

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.