STAND. COM. REP. NO.  957

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

                , 2015

 

RE:   S.B. No. 892

      S.D. 2

      H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

Honorable Joseph M. Souki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Twenty-Eighth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2015

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

     Your Committee on Economic Development & Business, to which was referred S.B. No. 892, S.D. 2, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO OMNIBUS HAWAI‘I RESILIENCE AND SUSTAINABILITY STRATEGY,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

     The purpose of this measure is to assist businesses and improve Hawaii's economic growth, as well as promote public safety, by making various appropriations for a Hawaii resilience and sustainability strategy in the areas of broadband and joint emergency management.  Specifically, this measure:

 

     (1)  Appropriates funds for the Hawaii Broadband Initiative; and

 

     (2)  Authorizes the issuance of general obligation bonds to finance the:

 

          (A)  Design, construction, and materials for broadband cable landing sites and for the preparation of environmental impact statements for seven of those sites; and

 

          (B)  Planning, land acquisition, design, and construction of a joint emergency management center in Mililani High Technology Park.

 

     The United States Pacific Command, Enterprise Honolulu, Pacific-Asia Institute for Resilience and Sustainability, and several concerned individuals testified in support of this measure.  The Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism, Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, State Fire Council, Honolulu Fire Department, High Technology Development Corporation, and Hawaii Farm Bureau supported the intent of this measure.

 

     Your Committee finds that prioritizing broadband infrastructure and increasing broadband capacity is critical to businesses and the growth of Hawaii's economy.  Increased broadband capacity is also crucial to providing more secure, reliable, and resilient Internet and data connectivity to Hawaii.  The concurrent development of a joint emergency management center will allow emergency responders to greatly improve cross-jurisdictional communications between various emergency agencies enhancing emergency preparedness and improving public safety.  This measure will facilitate the development of public-private partnerships to provide increased broadband infrastructure, thereby improving Hawaii's economic growth and enhancing public safety.

 

     However, your Committee also finds that improving the reliability and security of the power grid and the water and sewer distribution systems on each island are necessary steps to support Hawaii's sustainability and economic growth, promote public safety, and enable Hawaii's resilience and sustainability strategy.

 

     Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

     (1)  Changing the means of financing for the design, construction, and materials for broadband cable landing sites and for the preparation of environmental impact statements for seven of those sites and for the planning, land acquisition, design, and construction of a joint emergency management center from general obligation bonds to general funds;

 

     (2)  Inserting language appropriating general funds for the State of Hawaii's Resilience and Sustainability's Initiative Management Team to continue its collaborative research efforts in exploring methods to improve energy efficiency and grid operations in Hawaii;

 

     (3)  Inserting language appropriating funds to support plans by the State of Hawaii's Resilience and Sustainability's Initiative Management Team to expedite county water improvement projects and target the water and sewer distribution systems on each island in the State; and

 

     (4)  Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for clarity, consistency, and style.

 

     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Economic Development & Business that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 892, S.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 892, S.D. 2, H.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Consumer Protection & Commerce.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Economic Development & Business,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

DEREK S.K. KAWAKAMI, Chair