Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 2708

       S.D. 2




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirtieth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2020

State of Hawaii




     Your Committees on Ways and Means and Judiciary, to which was referred S.B. No. 2708, S.D. 1, entitled:




beg leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to authorize the Department of Agriculture to exercise increased management and control over lands under its jurisdiction, with the goal of supporting and promoting growth in the State's agriculture industry.


     More specifically, the measure:


(1)  Authorizes the Department of Agriculture to undertake various activities to promote agriculture and the development of infrastructure on lands under its jurisdiction;


(2)  Establishes the Agricultural Enterprise Program;


(3)  Establishes and appropriates funds to the agricultural enterprise special fund; and


(4)  Requires the Board of Agriculture to submit to the Legislature an annual by-parcel accounting of non-agricultural park lessees.


     Your Committees received written comments in support of this measure from the Department of Agriculture; Meadow Gold Dairies; Hawaii Coconut Protectors; Maui County Farm Bureau; Waihale Products; Tropical Flowers Express; Aikane Plantation; Ponoholo Ranch; Ulupalakua Ranch; Kauai Nursery and Landscaping, Inc.; County Farm Bureau; KHK Ranch, LLC; Main Family Farm; East Oahu County Farm Bureau; Hawaii Farm Bureau; Kahuku Farmers, Inc.; Ulupono Initiative; Melvin Kunitake Farm; Hawaii Aquaculture and Aquaponics Association; M. Kawamura Farm; Flowers Forever, LLC; Olakai Hawaii; Hartung Brothers Hawaii, LLC; Hawaii Beef, LLC; Hawaii Cattlemen's Council; KVTHC; Aquaculture Planning and Advocacy, LLC; Land Use Research Foundation of Hawaii; Analytical Services, LLC; The Grassmaster; Local Food Coalition; Ajar, Inc.; and numerous individuals.


     Your Committees received written comments on this measure from the Department of Land and Natural Resources.


     Your Committees find that establishing the Agricultural Enterprise Program and authorizing the Department of Agriculture to exercise greater control over the land under its jurisdiction will boost agricultural production and move the State closer to its self-sufficiency and food security goals.


     Your Committees have amended this measure by:


(1)  Codifying as a new section in Chapter 166E, Hawaii Revised Statutes, the requirement that the Board of Agriculture submit an annual report containing an accounting of non-agricultural park leases by parcel;


(2)  Changing the appropriation to an unspecified amount;


(3)  Changing the effective date to July 1, 2050; and


(4)  Making technical nonsubstantive amendments for purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.


     As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Ways and Means and Judiciary that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2708, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2708, S.D. 2.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Ways and Means and Judiciary,