STAND. COM. REP. NO. 530
RE: S.B. No. 1240
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Twenty-Ninth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2017
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Water and Land, to which was referred S.B. No. 1240 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO AQUATIC LIFE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to place a moratorium on aquarium fish permits until:
(1) The Department of Land and Natural Resources submits proposed legislation to the Legislature including a definition of "sustainable", a policy for sustainable collection practices of near shore aquatic life, and limits on the total number of species and sustainable rates of collection; and
(2) A definition of "sustainable" and a policy for sustainable collection practices of near shore aquatic life, including limits on the total number of species and sustainable rates of collection, are enacted.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Humane Society of the United States; Environmental Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii; Ocean Tourism Coalition; Animal Rights Hawaii; Wild Open Eye; Snorkel Bob's; Endangered Habitats League; For the Sea Productions; Coral Triangle Conservancy, Inc; Fish Feel; We Are One, Inc; Green Divers Productions; Maui Island Mermaids, LLC; Bonefish Hawaii; and three hundred eighty-three individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums; Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council; Coral Fish Hawaii; Wayne's Ocean World, Inc; Pele Lani Farm, LLC; House of Tropicals; Hawaii Opae Ula; Coast Tropicals; Pet Depot; Tropical Fish Emporium, LLC; Cyanide Free For Me; and thirty-six individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Land and Natural Resources and twenty-five individuals.
Your Committee finds that ensuring the sustainability of aquatic life and the protection of coral reefs in Hawaii waters is vital to the long-term interests of the people of Hawaii; the economic and environmental benefits of protecting the marine environment cannot be overstated. Your Committee further finds that it is imperative for the long-term protection of marine resources to determine what is sustainable and to establish a policy for sustainable collection practices of near shore aquatic life. Your Committee notes that there is a lack of data regarding the numbers of various species of aquarium fish in the waters around Oahu and the effects of current collection practices.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Removing the moratorium on aquarium fish permits;
(2) Requiring the Department of Land and Natural Resources to submit proposed legislation, including a definition of "sustainable", a policy for sustainable collection practices of near shore aquatic life, and limits on collection, to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the 2019 Regular Session; and
(3) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Water and Land that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1240, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1240, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Judiciary and Labor.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Water and Land,
KARL RHOADS, Chair