STAND. COM. REP. NO. 689
RE: S.B. No. 193
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred S.B. No. 193, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO EQUITABLE GENDER REPRESENTATION ON CORPORATE BOARDS,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to require publicly held domestic corporations to include individuals of all genders among the directors of their corporate boards.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawai‘i Civil Rights Commission, Domestic Violence Action Center, Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii, American Association of University Women of Hawaii, Hawaii Women's Coalition, Hawai‘i Women Lawyers, and four individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from one individual. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Business Registration Division of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.
Your Committee finds that the inclusion of individuals of all genders on boards of directors of publicly held corporations will boost the State's economy, improve opportunities for all individuals in the workplace, protect Hawaii taxpayers, and lead to other societal benefits. Numerous studies have concluded that United States' companies with three or more female directors reported earnings per share higher than earnings for companies with no female directors. Additionally, corporations may benefit from higher profits, better employee job satisfaction, productivity rates, and better corporate reputations. If proactive measures are not taken, studies predict that it will take forty to fifty years to achieve gender parity. Although women represent the majority in the nation's college-educated work force, women and non-binary individuals hold only twenty percent of corporate board positions due to gender discrimination and negative stereotypes. Therefore, this measure provides opportunities for women and non-gender binary individuals to affirmatively pursue opportunities to promote gender balance in leadership positions.
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 S.B. No. 193, S.D. 1, and recommends that it pass Third Reading.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
KARL RHOADS, Chair