Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 232




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2021

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Agriculture and Environment, to which was referred S.B. No. 232 entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to:


     (1)  Increase the maximum civil penalty for littering from $500 to $1,000; and


     (2)  Increase the maximum fine for the offense of criminal littering from $1,000 to $5,000.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawaii Food Industry Association and one individual.


     Your Committee finds that littering is costly, portrays a negative picture of an area and is dangerous to the environment.  Litter can cause physical harm and injury, especially needles, broken glass, highway debris, and improperly disposed of cigarette butts that may spark fires.  Littering can also contribute to the spread of disease and pollute the environment as toxic chemicals leach into waterways and soils.  Furthermore, when litter drifts out to sea, animals may ingest the plastic which creates health problems, including depletion of nutrients and causing animals to die.  Additionally, toxins ingested by animals may cause blood clotting, seizures, or other serious issues.  Toxic waterways may also kill off surrounding plant life in riverbanks, soil, and the air, compromising the health of the ecosystems and the animals and humans that rely on the health of the ecosystem.  Your Committee finds that littering fines must be increased to reflect the seriousness of the offense, be sufficient to deter individuals from littering, and demonstrate the State's commitment to protecting the natural environment.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Agriculture and Environment that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 232 and recommends that it pass Second Reading and be referred to your Committee on Judiciary.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Agriculture and Environment,