STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1435
RE: H.B. No. 857
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committees on Transportation and Government Operations, to which was referred H.B. No. 857, H.D. 2, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO TRAFFIC,"
beg leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to:
(1) Prohibit the operation of a motor scooter within the pedestrian mall that abuts the grounds of the State Capitol and Iolani Palace;
(2) Appropriate funds for the expansion and development of the makai paved walkway of the pedestrian mall to include a designated bicycle lane; and
(3) Require the Department of Accounting and General Services, Department of Transportation, and Department of Land and Natural Resources to create a long-term development plan to improve the pedestrian mall to create an attractive and visually impressive pedestrian and bicycle mall.
Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Transportation, Department of Land and Natural Resources, Department of Accounting and General Services, Hawaii Bicycling League, Hawai‘i Pacific Health, Blue Zones Project, Hawai‘i Public Health Institute, and twenty-one individuals. Your Committees received testimony in opposition to this measure from one individual.
Your Committees find that the central location of the State Capitol offers a convenient means of commuting for certain motorists and pedestrians. However, your Committees further find that this convenience has also caused safety and comfort issues for pedestrians due to the use of motor scooters in the pedestrian mall. Your Committees believe that in order to ensure the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists, a bicycle lane should be developed near the State Capitol, Iolani Palace, and the main branch of the Hawaii State Library. This measure will address the needs and safety issues of pedestrians, provide bicyclists with a safer route through the pedestrian mall, and preserve the historic and iconic architecture of the capitol district.
Your Committees have amended this measure by:
(1) Clarifying that the expansion and development of the makai paved walkway shall include widening the path or creating multiple paths sufficient to separate pedestrians and wheeled vehicles, rather than requiring the path be widened no less than an additional eight feet;
(2) Requiring the Department of Transportation to consult with the Department of Land and Natural Resources in accordance with section 6E-8, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to ensure that the upgrades visually reflect the historic nature and iconic architecture of the capitol district; and
(3) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
Your Committees note the concern regarding the potential inclusion of motorized chairs that are being used due to a disability in the definition of a "motor scooter" and request that the Department of Transportation look into this concern to ensure that those with mobility disabilities are not adversely affected by this measure.
Your Committees further note the concern that the Oahu transportation management area metropolitan planning organization revolving fund may not be the proper source of funding for this project and encourages the stakeholders to find an appropriate source of funding as this measure moves on to your Committee on Ways and Means.
As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Transportation and Government Operations that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 857, H.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 857, H.D. 2, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committees on Judiciary and Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Transportation and Government Operations,
LAURA H. THIELEN, Chair
LORRAINE R. INOUYE, Chair