STAND. COM. REP. NO. 416
RE: S.B. No. 752
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Higher Education, to which was referred S.B. No. 752 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO AGRICULTURE,"
beg leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to appropriate funds to the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources for research and prevention of the spread of ornamental ginger pathogens.
Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Agriculture; University of Hawai‘i System; Hawai‘i Floriculture and Nursery Association; Maui County Farm Bureau; Land Use Research Foundation of Hawaii; Hawaii Crop Improvement Association; O‘ahu County Committee on Legislative Priorities of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i; Green Point Nurseries, Inc.; Hawai‘i Farm Bureau; Hawaii Tropical Flower Council; Hilo Sun Farms; Sweetbreads, LLC; O‘ahu Resource Conservation and Development Council; Orchid Growers of Hawai‘i; Ho‘omana Plantations LLC; and seventy-nine individuals.
Your Committees find that ornamental ginger is a popular plant that is commonly used in tropical landscape designs. The plant's red and pink floral brackets are often used as an ornamental cut flower in floral arrangements seen everywhere from Waikiki hotel lobbies to cemeteries across the State. Because of emerging plant viruses, commercial production of ornamental ginger has been on the decline for the past ten years on Oahu.
Your Committees further find that in 2018, University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources personnel met with Department of Agriculture officials and found that more diagnostic work and statewide survey information are needed to better understand the effects of the pathogens on crop decline and plant death. This measure provides support to the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources to further investigate these pathogens that could quickly spread statewide and affect the profitability and long-term sustainability of local ornamental and landscape production industries.
As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Higher Education that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 752 and recommend that it pass Second Reading and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Higher Education,
DONNA MERCADO KIM, Chair
MIKE GABBARD, Chair