HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

631

TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2017

H.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO WATER.

 

 

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

 


SECTION 1. Section 174C-87, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"174C-87 Abandonment of wells. (a) When a well is abandoned, the owner shall fill and seal the well in a manner approved by the commission. Before abandonment, the owner shall file with the commission a report showing the owner's name and address; the water use permit number, if any; the name and address of the well driller who will be employed to perform the work required for abandonment; the reason for abandonment; a description of the work to be performed to effect the abandonment; and such other information as the commission may require.

(b) The owner of an abandoned well shall repair or fill and seal the well at the owner's expense, as provided by rules adopted pursuant to chapter 91.

(c) Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, if the owner of real property that includes an abandoned well transfers ownership of the real property the owner shall notify the commission on water resources of that transfer prior to going into escrow. In addition, if the owner of real property transfers ownership to another person without first reporting and repairing or filling and sealing the abandoned well pursuant to subsection (a), the transferring owner shall be liable for the abandoned well under this section; provided that the commission establishes that:

(1) The well was abandoned when the transferring owner transferred the property; and

(2) The transferring owner did not report and repair or fill and seal the well pursuant to subsection (a);

provided further that a new owner shall not be liable for an abandoned well under this section if the commission establishes the transferring owner's liability for that abandoned well pursuant to this subsection."

SECTION 2. There is appropriated out of the         special fund the sum of $         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2017-2018 and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2018-2019 for the following positions in the commission on water resource management of the department of land and natural resources:

(1) Two full-time equivalent (2.0 FTE) site inspector positions; and

(2) One full-time equivalent position (1.0 FTE) to oversee the procurement, management, and monitoring of well sealing contracts and enforcement of well construction and pump installation standards.

The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of land and natural resources for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 3. There is appropriated out of the         special fund the sum of $         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2017-2018 and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2018-2019 for enforcement of well abandonment requirements.

The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of land and natural resources for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 4. Contractors and other third parties who receive funds under this Act may be subject to review and inspection by the department of land and natural resources, the attorney general, or the auditor. Upon request by such agencies, the contractor or third party shall be required to submit for review all files, records, documents, and accounting related to the use and expenditure of funds received pursuant to this Act, whether the funds were received via contract, grant, or other agreement.

SECTION 5. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 6. New statutory material is underscored. SECTION 7. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.


 


Report Title:

Water; Wells; Abandonment; Liability; Appropriation

 

Description:

Requires an owner or prior owner of an abandoned well to repair or seal the well at the owner's or prior owner's expense. Appropriates funds for three new positions to assist DLNR with the inspection of abandoned wells, the enforcement of well construction and pump installation standards, and enforcement of well abandonment requirements. (HB631 HD1)

 

 

 

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