STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1283-16
RE: S.B. No. 2618
Honorable Joseph M. Souki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Twenty-Eighth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2016
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Transportation, to which was referred S.B. No. 2618, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO TRANSPORTATION,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose of this measure is to begin the process of establishing an alternative mode of interisland transportation of passengers and goods. Specifically, this measure requires the Department of Transportation to conduct a study on the feasibility of establishing an interisland ferry system and appropriates funds for the study.
The Department of Transportation, Hawaii Farm Bureau, United Public Workers, AFSCME Local 646, AFL-CIO, Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association, Libertarian Party of Hawaii, IOMM&P and several concerned individuals testified in support of this measure. The Building Industry Association of Hawaii and Hawaii Shippers Council testified in support of the intent of this measure. Aloha Analytics testified in opposition to this measure.
As the only island state in the nation, Hawaii does not enjoy the benefit of being linked to other states, cities, or towns via the federal interstate highway system or a network of interconnected state and local highways. This presents unique challenges for residents and visitors alike who wish to travel between the islands of the State as air transportation is currently the only available means of travel between Hawaii's major islands. While other states, such as the State of Washington, use ferry systems as a transportation alternative, Hawaii has no such system in place. Your Committee finds that an interisland ferry system can serve as an efficient alternative for transporting passengers, cargo, farm produce, and motor vehicles between islands and that the feasibility of establishing such a system should be explored.
However, your Committee understands that concerns regarding traffic congestion and the transmission of invasive species have been raised with the establishment of an interisland ferry system in the past. Accordingly, your Committee has amended this measure by requiring the Department of Transportation to include in its study:
(1) Consideration and determination of the impacts an interisland ferry system would have on traffic congestion on all islands served by an interisland ferry; and
(2) Consideration of the impacts an interisland ferry system could have on the transmission of invasive species between islands and determination of inspection requirements to limit the transmission of invasive species between islands.
Technical, nonsubstantive amendments were also made for clarity, consistency, and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Transportation that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2618, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2618, S.D. 1, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Finance.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Transportation,
HENRY J.C. AQUINO, Chair