STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1517
RE: H.B. No. 957
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Twenty-Ninth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2017
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred H.B. No. 957, H.D. 1, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO HEAT ABATEMENT,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to authorize and expedite heat abatement measures at public schools.
Specifically, this measure:
(1) Authorizes the use of the Hawaii green infrastructure special fund for installation costs for energy-efficient lighting and other energy-efficiency measures related to heat-abatement at public schools;
(2) Appropriates $46,400,000 from the special fund to finance those installation costs;
(3) Authorizes the Department of Education to borrow $46,400,000 from the Hawaii green infrastructure loan program for those installation costs; and
(4) Requires the Department of Education to repay the loan using general revenues saved by the reduced utility costs that result from energy-efficient lighting and other energy efficiency measures.
Your Committee received written comments in support of this measure from the Department of Education; Ulupono Initiative; Hawaii State Teachers Association; IMUAlliance; Hawaii Retail Services, LLC; Lumenal Lighting; Energy Management Consulting & Construction, LLC; Hawaii Energy Systems; and Paradise Lighting.
Your Committee received written comments on this measure from the Department of Budget and Finance and the Public Utilities Commission.
Your Committee finds that school classroom air-conditioning is an important but under-appreciated component of effective learning strategies. Your Committee finds, for example, that the percentile gap between students learning in air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned environments can reach as much as seventeen per cent on achievement tests, clearly showing the impact of a comfortable classroom environment on student success. Your Committee also finds that students between the fourth and ninth grades at demographically similar schools showed increased gains in reading vocabulary, total mathematics, problem solving, mathematics procedures, pre-writing, and editing at schools with air conditioning, as compared with their peers from schools without air conditioning. In other words, the longer and more consistently students are exposed to classroom cooling, the better and more stable their performance gains will tend to be.
Your Committee notes that the Public Utilities Commission has recently given approval to the Hawaii Green Infrastructure Authority to deploy up to $60,000,000 from the Hawaii green infrastructure loan program to the Department of Education for its energy sustainability program. Installation of energy efficiency measures and heat abatement measures could significantly reduce the department's kilowatt load, energy consumption, and costs. Your Committee believes that this measure will provide the necessary statutory framework for the loan transaction.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Changing the appropriation and loan amounts to unspecified amounts; and
(2) Specifying that the loan from the green infrastructure loan program to the Department of Education will be interest-free.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 957, H.D. 1, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 957, H.D. 1, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,
JILL N. TOKUDA, Chair