TWENTY-SIXTH LEGISLATURE, 2011
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO HOMELESSNESS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that homelessness is a societal problem that has plagued Hawaii and the nation for many years. Although great strides have been made in addressing the issue of homelessness, Hawaii has experienced an increase in the number of homeless persons. Homelessness remains a complex issue involving coordination, planning, implementation, and funding among state and county agencies, nonprofit entities, and the federal government.
On June 22, 2010, the cabinet secretaries from the federal Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Veterans Affairs joined the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness to unveil and submit to the President and Congress the nation's first comprehensive strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness. The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness comprises nineteen federal agencies to coordinate the nation's housing, health, employment security, education, and human services functions and to create a national partnership between every level of government and the private sector to maximize the effectiveness of the federal government's response in addressing homelessness.
Described by the federal government as the most far-reaching and ambitious program in history to prevent and end homelessness, the strategic plan will strengthen existing programs and forge new partnerships. With Congress, state and local officials, faith-based and community organizations, and business and philanthropic leaders across the country working together, the plan will harness public and private resources to build on proven local level innovations.
The legislature finds that Hawaii needs a mechanism similar to the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness to formulate and coordinate a unified plan to address homelessness in all counties and facilitate the acquisition of federal funding for homeless programs. The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness recommends that the states establish such a state agency by legislative action or executive order, or both.
The purpose of this Act is to establish the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness and to make an appropriation for its administrative expenses.
SECTION 2. There is established the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness, which shall be an advisory body exempt from section 26-34, Hawaii Revised Statutes. The Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall be under the department of human services for administrative purposes. The director of human services shall serve as the ad hoc coordinator of the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness. The members of the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall serve without compensation but shall be reimbursed for expenses, including travel expenses, necessary for the performance of their duties.
The Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall be responsible for organizing its member entities to formulate and coordinate a unified plan to address homelessness in all counties and facilitate the acquisition of federal funding for homeless programs.
SECTION 3. The Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall be composed of at least one representative from each of the following:
(1) The office of the governor, to be designated by the governor;
(2) The senate, to be designated by the president of the senate;
(3) The house of representatives, to be designated by the speaker of the house of representatives;
(4) The benefit, employment, and support services division of the department of human services, to be designated by the director of human services;
(5) The homeless programs office of the department of human services, to be designated by the director of human services;
(6) The Hawaii public housing authority, to be designated by the director of human services;
(7) The Hawaii housing finance and development corporation, to be designated by the director of business, economic development, and tourism;
(8) The Hawaii community development authority, to be designated by the director of business, economic development, and tourism;
(9) The adult mental health division of the department of health, to be designated by the director of health;
(10) The alcohol and drug abuse division of the department of health, to be designated by the director of health;
(11) The intake service center division of the department of public safety, to be designated by the director of public safety;
(12) The workforce development division of the department of labor and industrial relations, to be designated by the director of labor and industrial relations;
(13) The department of education employee or designee who is responsible for the administration of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, to be designated by the superintendent of education;
(14) The Hawaii head start program of the department of human services, to be designated by the director of human services;
(15) The homeless programs of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, to be designated by the head of the Hawaii office of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs;
(16) The center on the family at the University of Hawaii;
(17) The Office of Community Planning and Development of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, to be designated by the director of the Hawaii office of the Office of Community Planning and Development of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development;
(18) The mayor of each county or the mayor's designee, who shall be responsible for the administration of homeless and housing programs for that county;
(19) The director or head of the continuum of care collaboration of each county, as follows:
(A) Maui homeless alliance;
(B) Community action partners (Hawaii county);
(C) Partners in care (city and county of Honolulu); and
(D) Kauai community alliance;
(20) The Hawaii Association of Realtors, to be designated by the president of the Hawaii Association of Realtors;
(21) A community health center that provides services to the homeless;
(22) The Roman Catholic Diocese of Honolulu, to be designated by the bishop of Honolulu; and
(23) The executive director of the Office for Social Ministry, Big Island Branch.
SECTION 4. (a) The Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall have the duties as provided in this section; provided that the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall have the discretion to prioritize the duties, adapt or modify any duty to the circumstances, and refrain from exercising any duty if changing circumstances make the duty no longer necessary or if a particular duty conflicts with another law or duty of another agency; provided further that the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall endeavor to coordinate the duties, responsibilities, and functions of all members of the council.
(b) The Hawaii interagency council on homelessness shall:
(1) Replicate the functions of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, to the extent possible in this State;
(2) Serve as the sole statewide homelessness planning and policy development resource; provided that county homelessness programs shall not be excluded;
(3) Develop a ten-year plan to end homelessness with emphasis on ending chronic homelessness, including:
(A) Articulating a strategy for successful implementation of the ten-year plan and ensuring accountability and achieving results in the implementation; and
(B) Recommending policy, regulatory, and resource allocations needed to successfully accomplish the ten-year plan;
(4) Develop short- and long-term statewide strategies and plans to end homelessness with an emphasis on eliminating chronic homelessness within ten years following the effective date of this Act;
(5) Partner with counties to identify resources and common strategies to end homelessness;
(6) Seek to coordinate activities of statewide continuum of care collaboration entities;
(7) Assemble accurate fiscal and demographic information, research, and data to support policy development and to track outcomes;
(8) Establish priorities based upon the ten-year plan to end homelessness;
(9) Recommend interagency strategies, including funding, homelessness prevention, and discharge planning;
(10) Review all state activities and programs to assist homeless persons;
(11) Support and replicate collaborative state homelessness initiatives of other states that demonstrate measurable outcomes;
(12) Promote systems integration of health services and housing to reduce duplication among homeless assistance programs;
(13) Identify funding opportunities, including mainstream resources for homeless persons;
(14) Involve non-traditional stakeholders, including representatives from corporations; business, philanthropic, and faith-based organizations; and other community institutions;
(15) Recommend to the legislature statutory changes and recommend to the executive departments regulatory changes to enhance the successful implementation of this Act;
(16) Communicate problems and concerns relating to homeless persons to the appropriate state or county agencies;
(17) Report annually to the governor, the legislature, each county mayor, and each county council on the progress of creating and implementing a ten-year plan to end homelessness;
(18) Conduct a public education program on homelessness;
(19) Disseminate information, including data and best practices, to state and county officials and to the public regarding issues related to homelessness; and
(20) Host or cause to be conducted an annual homelessness conference.
SECTION 5. If any provision of this Act is found to be in conflict with a federal requirement, the federal requirement shall prevail and the provision shall be deemed to be amended to conform to the federal requirement.
SECTION 6. 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 2011-2012 and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2012-2013 for administrative expenses of the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness.
The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of human services for the purposes of this Act.
SECTION 7. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.
Homelessness; Interagency Council; Department of Human Services; Appropriation
Establishes the Hawaii interagency council on homelessness, under the department of human services for administrative purposes; makes an appropriation for administrative expenses. Effective 7/1/50. (SD2)
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