STAND. COM. REP. NO. 179-20
RE: H.B. No. 2703
Honorable Scott K. Saiki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2020
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Lower & Higher Education, to which was referred H.B. No. 2703 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO PREVENTING SCHOOL VIOLENCE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
(1) Establish a pilot program to establish a start-to-finish response to threats of targeted school violence; and
(2) Appropriate funds to the Department of Defense for resources to help prevent targeted school violence.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Human Services. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the Hawaii Youth Services Network. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Defense; Department of Defense Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing School Violence Program; Department of Education; and State Public Charter School Commission.
Your Committee finds that between January 1, 2019, and November 19, 2019, forty-five school shootings occurred over forty-six weeks across the United States at various elementary, middle, and high schools as well as on college and university campuses. Although Hawaii schools have not yet fallen victim to completed acts of mass violence, the State's schools do regularly experience threats of shootings and bombings. Your Committee further finds that currently, gaps exist in inter-agency coordination, communication, and standardized responses to threats of targeted school violence in Hawaii. This measure is intended to address those gaps and prevent targeted school violence in the State.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Clarifying that the pilot program may include one independent school and one public charter school;
(2) Changing its effective date to July 1, 2050; and
(3) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.
Should the Committee on Judiciary decide to hear this measure, your Committee respectfully requests that it consider the amendments raised in the Department of Defense Students, Teachers, and Officers Preventing School Violence Program's testimony and work with the Program on this measure.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Lower & Higher Education that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 2703, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 2703, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Judiciary.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Lower & Higher Education,
JUSTIN H. WOODSON, Chair