STAND. COM. REP. NO. 3755
RE: H.B. No. 2420
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2020
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred H.B. No. 2420, H.D. 2, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO THE HAWAII CIVIL RIGHTS COMMISSION,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to:
(1) Clarify the meaning of "program or activity receiving state financial assistance" in section 368-1.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes; and
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawai‘i Civil Rights Commission, Disability and Communication Access Board, Hawaii Disability Rights Center, National Federation of the Blind, and two individuals.
Your Committee finds that the Hawaii Supreme Court held in Hawaii Technology Academy and the Department of Education v. L.E. and Hawaii Civil Rights Commission, 141 Hawaii 147, 407 P.3d 103 (2017), that the Legislature did not intend the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission to have jurisdiction over disability discrimination claims under section 368-1.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, relating to programs and activities receiving state financial assistance, if protections under section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended, are applicable. This measure clarifies that it was always the Legislature's intent to give the Commission jurisdiction over these claims to provide a state remedy even when federal protections under section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, are also available. This measure also excludes cases within the scope of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act from the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission's jurisdiction under section 368-1.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to address possible concerns regarding potential duplication of services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, P.L. 101-476, as amended, and the Rehabilitation Act, and their respective appeals processes.
Your Committee has amended this measure by making it effective upon its approval.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 2420, H.D. 2, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 2420, H.D. 2, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
KARL RHOADS, Chair