Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 2897

       S.D. 1




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirtieth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2020

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health, to which was referred S.B. No. 2897 entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to increase the marriage license fee to support the Department of Health's birth defects program, fund modernization of the vital statistics system, and more fairly compensate marriage license agents.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Health.


     Your Committee finds that the Department of Health is mandated, under its birth defects program, to collect surveillance information on birth defects; report the incidence, trends, and causes of birth defects; and report information for the development of prevention strategies to reduce the incidence of birth defects.  However, without additional funding, the program will not have sufficient funding for operating expenses beginning fiscal year 2020-2021.


     Your Committee further finds that the vital statistics registration system is over twenty years old and needs to be replaced to support more efficient processing of requests.  However, the monies in the vital statistics improvement special fund are not sufficient for the modernization and automation of the vital statistics system and to offset costs for the daily operations of the system of vital statistics.  Additionally, the current compensation for non-civil service marriage license agents has not changed since 1998 and is not enough to meet the operating costs of marriage license agents.  Increasing the marriage license fee will ensure that the Hawaii birth defects program continues to be supported, the vital statistics system can be updated and modernized, and marriage license agents are more fairly compensated.


     Your Committee has amended this measure by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2897, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2897, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health,