Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    GOV. MSG. NO. 727




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Twenty-Ninth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2018

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Water and Land, to which was referred Governor's Message No. 727, submitting for study and consideration the nomination of: 


Land Use Commission


G.M. No. 727


for a term to expire 06-30-2022,


begs leave to report as follows:


     Your Committee reviewed the personal history, resume, and statement submitted by Arnold Wong for service on the Land Use Commission.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the reappointment of Arnold Wong from the Land Use Commission; International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 50; Retail Merchants of Hawaii; Hawaii State AFL-CIO; and three individuals.


     Upon review of the testimony, your Committee finds that Mr. Wong's experience in the public and private sectors, commitment to public service, and proven leadership qualify him to be nominated for reappointment to the Land Use Commission as an at-large member.  Your Committee notes that Mr. Wong currently serves as the Director of Government Affairs for the Ironworkers Union Stabilization Fund, Local 625.  He previously served as the Government Grants Manager for The Nature Conservancy, Executive Director of the Juvenile Justice Center of the City and County of Honolulu, and Homeless Coordinator for the City and County of Honolulu.  He has extensive involvement and demonstrated leadership in industry organizations and community activities, including serving as a Trustee of the Ironworkers Union Stabilization Fund, former Vice-Chairperson of the Honolulu Fire Commission, board member of the St. Francis Healthcare Foundation of Hawaii, and Head Coach of the Pac-5 Judo Team.


     Your Committee further notes that Mr. Wong serves as the Chairperson of the Land Use Commission and has instituted an educational program every quarter, on different issues that affected the Commission.  In his personal statement, Mr. Wong indicated his pleasure to be part of a Commission that voted on specific parcels to be designated as important agricultural lands.  If appointed to serve a second term, Mr. Wong stated that he would like to create an enforcement process that is more flexible than the Commission's current option, which is to revert the land back to its original designation; establish a training program for new Commission members regarding legislation; and further facilitate the designation of more lands as important agricultural lands.  Testimony submitted in support of the nominee indicates that Mr. Wong has proven himself to be an invaluable member of the Land Use Commission.  He has shown leadership and a high level of understanding with regard to the key legal and economic issues facing the Commission, and is considered a balanced and effective decision-maker.  His diverse background as a union representative and his work for The Nature Conservancy give him a unique perspective.


     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, after full consideration of the background, experience, and qualifications of the nominee, has found the nominee to be qualified for the position to which nominated and recommends that the Senate advise and consent to the nomination.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Water and Land,