STAND. COM. REP. NO. 2009
RE: S.B. No. 2116
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Twenty-Ninth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2018
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Agriculture and Environment, to which was referred S.B. No. 2116 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO BIOSECURITY,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to establish the biosecurity emergency response special fund within the Department of Agriculture and appropriate funds for rapid response to terrestrial and aquatic biosecurity emergencies at or beyond ports so that newly detected threats may be immediately addressed.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Department of Agriculture, Hawai‘i Farm Bureau, Hawaii Coffee Association, Coordinating Group on Alien Pest Species, Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation, Oahu County Legislative Priorities Committee of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, and one individual. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Budget and Finance.
Your Committee finds that rapid response to newly detected terrestrial and aquatic biosecurity emergencies in the State is essential to prevent biosecurity threats from becoming firmly established, thus saving taxpayers money in the long term. State agencies currently lack resources and a mechanism to quickly respond to new threats and, therefore, may be missing opportunities to eliminate those threats. Your Committee finds that this measure provides such a mechanism to enable the Department of Agriculture to take necessary action quickly to protect Hawaii's agriculture, commerce, economy, environment, and public health.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Agriculture and Environment that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2116 and recommends that it pass Second Reading and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Agriculture and Environment,
MIKE GABBARD, Chair