HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1153

THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2019

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO REMOTE TESTIMONY IN LEGISLATIVE HEARINGS.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that as an island state, Hawaii's geography poses particular challenges for residents of the counties of Hawaii, Kauai, and Maui to actively participate in the legislative process by testifying in person in committee hearings. Although legislative committees accept written testimony via electronic means, presenting in-person, face-to-face testimony before the legislature is costly and time-consuming for neighbor island residents and others who reside far from the state capitol.

Neighbor island residents who physically attend legislative committee hearings to testify on measures and actively engage in the legislative process incur significant air travel and other transportation costs, and in some instances, lodging costs. For these individuals, providing testimony to the legislature in person often means taking time off from work.

The legislature recognizes the necessity of expanding opportunities for neighbor island residents and other individuals to enable them to actively participate in the legislative process and weigh in on issues. The legislature also recognizes that face-to-face public testimony can have a significant impact on legislators and the media and that enabling the public to provide live, real time remote testimony will improve citizen participation in and public access to the legislative process.

The purpose of this Act is to require each house of the legislature to establish procedures and necessary information infrastructure for the public to present remote testimony at legislative committee hearings.

SECTION 2. Chapter 21, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"21-   Remote testimony; rules. (a) Each house of the legislature shall establish, by rule, procedures that enable:

(1) The legislature to use remote testimony at legislative committee hearings; and

(2) The public to present oral testimony at legislative committee hearings through remote testimony.

(b) As used in this section, "remote testimony" means the use of video conferencing or other technology that facilitates interaction between the public and members of the legislature and enables the public to submit oral testimony remotely via the Internet or other telecommunications technology during legislative hearings and proceedings."

SECTION 3. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2019-2020 and the sum of $         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2020-2021 to carry out the purposes of this Act.

The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of accounting and general services for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 4. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2019.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

Remote Testimony; Legislature; Committee Hearings

 

Description:

Requires each house of the Legislature to establish, by rule, procedures for the public to present oral testimony at legislative committee hearings through remote testimony. Appropriates funds.

 

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.