THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

284

TWENTY-EIGHTH LEGISLATURE, 2015

S.D. 2

STATE OF HAWAII

H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO THE TRANSIENT ACCOMMODATIONS TAX.

 

 

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

 


PART I

     SECTION 1.  The purpose of this part is to establish a method to use transient accommodations tax revenues to reimburse the state general fund for the debt service on reimbursable general obligation bonds, the proceeds of which will be used to acquire a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, for the protection, preservation, and enhancement of natural resources important to the State.

     The legislature finds that the transient accommodations tax revenues are substantially derived from the visitor industry and comprise user taxes.  The legislature also finds that the acquisition of the Turtle Bay conservation easement by the department of budget and finance is for the purpose of supporting, encouraging and enhancing the natural beauty of Oahu's north shore, which, by sustaining the visitor industry attracting visitors to the State, will contribute to the amounts of transient accommodations tax revenues collected.  The legislature further finds that the acquisition of the Turtle Bay conservation easement by the department of budget and finance and its subsequent transfer to the department of land and natural resources is crucial to the protection, preservation, and enhancement of the State's natural resources and to the State's economic well-being, and is for a public purpose.

     This part:

     (1)  Authorizes the department of budget and finance to issue $         in reimbursable general obligation bonds and to use the proceeds to acquire a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu;

     (2)  Requires the department of budget and finance, upon acquisition, to transfer the conservation easement to the department of land and natural resources; and

     (3)  Allocates transient accommodations tax revenues of $         annually to the department of budget and finance to pay the debt service on the reimbursable general obligation bonds and ongoing expenses related to the issuance of the bonds.

     SECTION 2.  Chapter 171, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding three new sections to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

     "§171-A  Reimbursable general obligation bonds for conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.  (a)  The department of budget and finance shall issue reimbursable general obligation bonds to acquire a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, for the protection, preservation, and enhancement of natural resources, while maintaining public access, as important to the State.  The public shall have perpetual public access to said conversation easement.  The conservation easement shall be in compliance with chapters 171 and 198.

     (b)  For the purpose of this section, the acquisition of the conservation easement shall be deemed an undertaking under chapter 39.

     (c)  The reimbursable general obligation bonds issued to acquire the conservation easement shall be payable from the transient accommodations tax revenues allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund established by section 171-B.  The transient accommodations tax revenues are and shall be deemed user taxes.  The revenues allocated shall be deemed user taxes pursuant to chapter 39 for the undertaking.

     (d)  The reimbursable general obligation bonds shall be issued in accordance with chapter 39.

     §171-B  Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund.  (a)  There is established the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund to be administered by the department of budget and finance.

     (b)  Transient accommodations tax revenues allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund pursuant to section 237D-6.5 shall be deposited into the special fund.  All interest earned on the moneys in the special fund shall be credited to the special fund.

     (c)  Moneys in the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund shall be expended to reimburse the state general fund for debt service on reimbursable general obligation bonds issued to acquire the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.

     (d)  The Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund shall be exempt from the central service expenses of section 36-27 and departmental administrative expenses of section 36-30.

     (e)  Upon reimbursement to the state general fund of all debt service on reimbursable general obligation bonds issued to acquire the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, any unencumbered and unexpended moneys in the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund shall be transferred to the tourism special fund established under section 201B-11.

     §171-C  Turtle Bay appraisal and due diligence.  (a) Of the excess revenues deposited into the general fund pursuant to section 237D-6.5(b), $        , or so much thereof as may be necessary in fiscal year 2015-2016, shall be appropriated to the department of land and natural resources for the purposes of obtaining an appraisal and performance of due diligence on the Turtle Bay conservation easement and the property rights proposed to be acquired.

     (b)Any appraisal and due diligence completed by the department of land and natural resources may be used by the department of budget and finance for the acquisition of the Turtle Bay conservation easement."

     SECTION 3.  Section 237D-6.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (b) to read as follows:

     "(b) Revenues collected under this chapter shall be distributed [as follows,] in the following priority, with the excess revenues to be deposited into the general fund:

     (1)  $         shall be allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund beginning July 1, 2015, for the reimbursement to the state general fund of debt service on reimbursable general obligation bonds, including ongoing expenses related to the issuance of the bonds, the proceeds of which were used to acquire the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, for the protection, preservation, and enhancement of natural resources important to the State, until the bonds are fully amortized;

    [(1)] (2)  $26,500,000 shall be allocated to the convention center enterprise special fund established under section 201B-8;

    [(2)] (3)  $82,000,000 shall be allocated to the tourism special fund established under section 201B-11; provided that:

         (A)  Beginning on July 1, 2012, and ending on June 30, 2015, $2,000,000 shall be expended from the tourism special fund for development and implementation of initiatives to take advantage of expanded visa programs and increased travel opportunities for international visitors to Hawaii;

         (B)  Of the $82,000,000 allocated:

              (i)  $1,000,000 shall be allocated for the operation of a Hawaiian center and the museum of Hawaiian music and dance at the Hawaii convention center; and

             (ii)  0.5 per cent of the $82,000,000 shall be transferred to a sub-account in the tourism special fund to provide funding for a safety and security budget, in accordance with the Hawaii tourism strategic plan 2005-2015; and

         (C)  Of the revenues remaining in the tourism special fund after revenues have been deposited as provided in this paragraph and except for any sum authorized by the legislature for expenditure from revenues subject to this paragraph, beginning July 1, 2007, funds shall be deposited into the tourism emergency trust fund, established in section 201B-10, in a manner sufficient to maintain a fund balance of $5,000,000 in the tourism emergency trust fund;

    [(3)] (4)  $103,000,000 for fiscal year 2014-2015, $103,000,000 for fiscal year 2015-2016, and $93,000,000 for each fiscal year thereafter shall be allocated as follows:  Kauai county shall receive 14.5 per cent, Hawaii county shall receive 18.6 per cent, city and county of Honolulu shall receive 44.1 per cent, and Maui county shall receive 22.8 per cent; provided that commencing with fiscal year 2018-2019, a sum that represents the difference between a county public employer's annual required contribution for the separate trust fund established under section 87A-42 and the amount of the county public employer's contributions into that trust fund shall be retained by the state director of finance and deposited to the credit of the county public employer's annual required contribution into that trust fund in each fiscal year, as provided in section 87A-42, if the respective county fails to remit the total amount of the county's required annual contributions, as required under section 87A-43; and

    [(4)  $3,000,000 shall be allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund established under section 201B-8.6 for the payment of debt service on revenue bonds, the proceeds of which were used to acquire the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, until the bonds are fully amortized; and]

     (5)  Of the excess revenues deposited into the general fund pursuant to this subsection, $3,000,000 shall be allocated subject to the mutual agreement of the board of land and natural resources and the board of directors of the Hawaii tourism authority in accordance with the Hawaii tourism authority strategic plan for:

         (A)  The protection, preservation, and enhancement of natural resources important to the visitor industry;

         (B)  Planning, construction, and repair of facilities; and

         (C)  Operation and maintenance costs of public lands connected with enhancing the visitor experience.

     All transient accommodations taxes shall be paid into the state treasury each month within ten days after collection and shall be kept by the state director of finance in special accounts for distribution as provided in this subsection.

     As used in this subsection, "fiscal year" means the twelve-month period beginning on July 1 of a calendar year and ending on June 30 of the following calendar year."

     SECTION 4.  Act 81, Session Laws of Hawaii 2014, is amended by amending section 6 to read as follows:

     "SECTION 6.  (a)  The [board of directors of the Hawaii tourism authority,] department of budget and finance, with the approval of the governor, is authorized to issue reimbursable general obligation bonds in the sum of $[40,000,000]         or so much thereof as may be necessary [for fiscal year 2014-2015] for the purpose of acquiring a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, [as authorized under section 201B-A, Hawaii Revised Statutes.] and the same sum shall be deposited into the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund.

     (b)  The [board of directors,] department of budget and finance, with the approval of the governor, shall issue the reimbursable general obligation bonds in such aggregate principal amount and under such terms, conditions, and maturity dates [that do not require any debt service payment to] such that the required payments of principal and interest on the reimbursable general obligation bonds shall not exceed $[3,000,000]         in any fiscal year.

     (c)  If the [board of directors] department of budget and finance cannot issue reimbursable general obligation bonds in accordance with the conditions of this section or section [201B-A] 171-A or chapter 39, [part III,] Hawaii Revised Statutes, no state funds shall be expended to acquire any conservation easement [or other real property interest] in Turtle Bay, Oahu."

     SECTION 5.  Act 81, Session Laws of Hawaii 2014, is amended by amending section 7 to read as follows:

     "SECTION 7.  There is appropriated out of the [revenue bond proceeds authorized by section 6 of this Act] Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund the sum of $[40,000,000]         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2014-2015, and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2015-2016, to carry out the purpose of [section 6; provided that any unexpended or unencumbered balance of the appropriation shall not lapse at the end of fiscal year 2014-2015 and shall lapse instead on June 30, 2016.] acquiring the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.

     The sum appropriated shall be expended by the [Hawaii tourism authority] department of budget and finance for the purpose of this Act."

     SECTION 6.  Upon acquiring the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, pursuant to this part, the department of budget and finance shall transfer the conservation easement to the department of land and natural resources.

     SECTION 7.  Section 201B-8.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is repealed.

     ["[§201B-8.5]  Revenue bonds for conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.  (a)  As authorized by section 6 of Act 81, Session Laws of Hawaii 2014, the authority shall issue revenue bonds to acquire a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.  The public shall have perpetual public access to said conservation easement.  The conservation easement shall be in compliance with chapter 198.

     Prior to executing the agreement to acquire the conservation easement, the authority shall:

     (1)  Obtain an appraisal and perform its due diligence on the conservation easement and property rights proposed to be acquired; and

     (2)  Offer to hold an informational briefing for the legislature.  The offer shall be made through the president of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives.

     (b)  For the purpose of this section, the authority shall be deemed a "department" and the acquisition of the conservation easement shall be deemed an "undertaking" under chapter 39.

     (c)  The revenue bonds issued to acquire the conservation easement shall be secured by and payable from the transient accommodations tax revenues allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund established pursuant to section 201B-8.6.  For this purpose, the revenues allocated shall be deemed "user taxes" for the undertaking.

     (d)  The revenue bonds shall be issued in accordance with chapter 39, part III.  The authority shall request the director of finance, on behalf of the authority, to perform the duties specified under section 39-68 regarding the preparation, sale, and administration of the revenue bonds."]

     SECTION 8.  Section 201B-8.6, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is repealed.

     ["[§201B-8.6]  Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund.  (a)  There is established the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund.

     (b)  Transient accommodations tax revenues allocated to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund pursuant to section 237D-6.5 shall be deposited into the special fund.  All interest earned on the moneys in the special fund shall be credited to the special fund.

     (c)  Moneys in the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund shall be expended to pay the debt service on revenue bonds issued to acquire the conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu, pursuant to section 201B-8.5.

     (d)  The Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund shall be exempt from the central service expenses of section 36-27 and departmental administrative expenses of section 36-30."]

     SECTION 9.  Act 81, Session Laws of Hawaii 2014, is amended by repealing section 5.

     ["SECTION 5.  (a)  The executive director of the Hawaii tourism authority and the director of finance shall enter into negotiations to restructure the debt owed to the department of budget and finance for the convention center so that the annual amount payable on the debt service is not more than $16,500,000 until fully retired.

     (b)  If the debt is not restructured as required under subsection (a), no state funds, including revenue bond funds, shall be expended to acquire any conservation easement or other real property interest in Turtle Bay, Oahu, notwithstanding the authorization under section 201B-A, Hawaii Revised Statutes, and sections 6 and 7 of this Act."]

     SECTION 10.  All unencumbered and unexpended moneys remaining on balance in the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund established under section 201B-8.6, Hawaii Revised Statutes, at the close of June 30, 2015, shall be transferred to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund established under section 171-B, Hawaii Revised Statutes, in section 4 of this Act.

PART II

     SECTION 11.  (a)  Of the excess revenues deposited into the general fund pursuant to section 237D-6.5(b), $        , or so much thereof as may be necessary in fiscal year 2015-2016, shall be appropriated to the office of planning to investigate the possibility of acquiring lands owned by Dole Food Company, Inc., between the north shore and central oahu area that are suitable for long-term diversified agricultural production, including conducting appraisals to determine the fair market value of both the Dole lands and State lands for the potential exchange of state lands.

     (b)  The Office of planning shall coordinate with the agribusiness development corporation, department of agriculture, the department of land and natural resources, and any other department or agency of the State that holds title to or an assignment of state land that may be appropriate for potential exchange under subsection (a).

     (c)  The office of planning shall submit a report to the legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the regular session of 2016 on:

          (1)  The feasibility of a land exchange of parcels of high interest to the State; and

          (2)  Any appropriations, proposed legislation, or administrative action necessary to accomplish the potential land exchange.

     SECTION 12.  In codifying the new sections added by section 4 of this Act, the revisor of statutes shall substitute appropriate section numbers for the letters used in designating the new sections in this Act.

     SECTION 13.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken.  New statutory material is underscored.

     SECTION 14.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050; provided that if a contract to acquire the Turtle Bay Conservation easement has not been entered into by December 31, 2015, part I of this Act shall be repealed on January 1, 2016.


 


 

Report Title:

Transient Accommodations Tax; Special Land and Development Fund; BLNR; B&F; HTA; Turtle Bay; Reimbursable General Obligation Bonds

 

Description:

Allocates $         of transient accommodations tax revenues to the Turtle Bay conservation easement special fund.  Authorizes the B&F to issue $         in reimbursable general obligation bonds and to use the proceeds to acquire a conservation easement in Turtle Bay, Oahu.  Requires the B&F to transfer the conservation easement to the DLNR.  Allocates transient accommodations tax revenues of $         annually to the B&F to reimburse to the state general fund the debt service on the reimbursement general obligation bonds and ongoing expenses related to the bonds.  Requires the Office of Planning to investigate acquiring lands owned by Dole Food Company, Inc.  (SB284 HD1)

 

 

 

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