S.C.R. NO.



S.D. 2











URGING THE department of land and natural resources, in consultation with the department of the attorney general and the office of hawaiian affairs, to evaluate the feasibility of establishing LAWS TO REQUIRE WRITTEN PERMISSION FROM THE LANDOWNER IN ORDER TO HUNT ON PRIVATE LANDS AND TO DISCUSS POTENTIAL AMENDMENTS TO CRIMINAL TRESPASSING LAWS TO ADDRESS HUNTING SITUATIONS.



     WHEREAS, farmers and ranchers have continually experienced problems, including damage and injury caused by trespassing hunters, yet have no recourse against trespassers and are defenseless against claims by the trespassers for incidents on private land despite the trespassers' illegal entry; and


     WHEREAS, poaching and agricultural theft have escalated over the years and must be better controlled through proper enforcement and strict sentencing; and


     WHEREAS, trespassing hunters also present safety issues for the farmers, ranchers, their families, and workers; and


     WHEREAS, existing laws inadequately protect private landowners from bodily injury and damage to property, livestock, and crops as a result of entry onto private property by trespassers engaged in hunting with firearms; and


     WHEREAS, private landowners are willing to work with licensed hunters who often assist the landowners in controlling the population of feral ungulates such as pigs, goats, and deer that damage the environment; and


     WHEREAS, requiring written permission from private landowners for hunting or other legitimate purposes is the very least that should be done to address the ongoing concerns of property owners relating to trespass, however, any changes in the laws should be done after thoughtful discussion and evaluation in order to identify and address possible issues and avoid unintended consequences; now, therefore,


     BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twenty-sixth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2012, the House of Representatives concurring, that the Department of Land and Natural Resources, in consultation with the Department of the Attorney General and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, is urged to:


     (1)  Evaluate the feasibility of establishing laws to require written permission from landowners in order to hunt on private lands; and


     (2)  Engage in discussions regarding amending the criminal trespassing laws to address hunting situations, specifically to restrict unlawful entry on private property while in the possession of a firearm; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the discussions among the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Department of the Attorney General, and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs include but not be limited to issues relating to:


     (1)  The feasibility of obtaining written permission from a private landowner;


     (2)  The feasibility of obtaining written permission when the hunting occurs on the property of an absent, abutting, or nearby landowners;


     (3)  The enforcement of laws requiring prior written permission or criminal trespass when property boundaries are unclear; and


     (4)  The impact that new or amended laws relating to hunting may have on protecting all Native Hawaiian rights customarily and traditionally exercised for subsistence, cultural, and religious purposes pursuant to article XII, section 7, of the Hawaii State Constitution; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is requested to submit a report of its findings and any proposed legislation to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2013; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Chairperson of the Board of Land and Natural Resources, Attorney General, and Chairperson of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

Report Title:

Hunting; Trespass on Private Lands; Written Permission; Report