STAND. COM. REP. NO. 94
RE: S.B. No. 530
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health, to which was referred S.B. No. 530 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO THE GENERAL EXCISE TAX,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to provide a general excise tax exemption for amounts received from the sale of mobility enhancing equipment, prescription drugs sold pursuant to a doctor's prescription, and prosthetic devices, and expand the definition of "prosthetic devices" to include devices that are worn on the body.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Policy Advisory Board for Elder Affairs, O‘ahu County Committee on Legislative Priorities of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i, and two individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Taxation and the Tax Foundation of Hawaii.
Your Committee finds that mobility enhancing equipment, hearing aids, prescription drugs, and prosthetic devices are often necessities for daily living among individuals with disabilities and kupuna. Sellers often pass on the general excise tax to the consumer, which increases the cost of an item. Exempting amounts received from the sales of necessary medical devices can therefore benefit individuals with disabilities and the elderly who are on a fixed income by reducing expenses associated with these items.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Adding hearing aids to the list of products exempted from the general excise tax; and
(2) 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 Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 530, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 530, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health,
ROSALYN H. BAKER, Chair