STAND. COM. REP. NO. 3553

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: H.B. No. 1996

H.D. 1

S.D. 1

 

 

 

Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Twenty-Eighth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2016

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committees on Judiciary and Labor and Ways and Means, to which was referred H.B. No. 1996, H.D. 1, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO AGRICULTURE,"

 

beg leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose and intent of this measure is to:

 

(1) Establish a two-year agricultural theft and vandalism pilot project to focus on investigating and prosecuting agricultural theft or agricultural vandalism in the County of Hawaii; and

 

(2) Appropriate funds for establishing and implementing the pilot project.

 

Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Agriculture; Office of the Prosecuting Attorney, County of Hawaii; Hawaii Fish Company; Hawaii Crop Improvement Association; Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United; Land Use Research Foundation of Hawaii; Ponoholo Ranch Limited; and eighty-nine individuals.

 

Your Committees find that agricultural theft and vandalism in the County of Hawaii are impediments to running a successful and profitable farming operation and harmful to consumers. Agricultural theft and vandalism are a serious, ongoing problem, with farmers reporting theft of crops, animals, equipment, and tools, and vandalized fences and gates. Since many incidents of agricultural theft and vandalism are not reported, the annual monetary losses can only be estimated, which is in the millions of dollars. By establishing an agricultural theft and vandalism pilot project for the County of Hawaii, this measure provides additional focus on investigating and prosecuting agriculture theft and vandalism.

 

Your Committees have amended this measure by:

 

(1) Inserting an effective date of January 7, 2059, to encourage further discussion; and

 

(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Judiciary and Labor and Ways and Means that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1996, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1996, H.D. 1, S.D. 1.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Judiciary and Labor and Ways and Means,

 

________________________________

JILL N. TOKUDA, Chair

 

________________________________

GILBERT S.C. KEITH-AGARAN, Chair