THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

1396

THIRTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2021

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to agricultural lands.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


PART I

SECTION 1. Chapter 166E, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"166E-   Disputes in land classification. (a) For lands that are deemed appropriate and acceptable for transfer pursuant to section 166E-3 and do not appear to have significant impacts on conservation, cultural, or recreational uses of the department of land and natural resources, including without limitation, watershed protection, forest reserve, game management activities, carbon sequestration programs, the department of land and natural resources shall transfer, by set aside, the management jurisdiction of such lands to the department by the governor's executive order.

(b) For lands that are deemed appropriate and acceptable for transfer pursuant to section 166E-3 and may have potentially conflicting or compatible agricultural and conservation, cultural, or recreational uses, to achieve collaborative management of those lands while preserving the agencies' abilities to carry out their respective mission priorities, the department and the department of land and natural resources, shall implement one or more of the following:

(1) Transfer concurrent management jurisdiction, to both the department and the department of land and natural resources, division of forestry and wildlife, for their respective subject matter purposes and expertise, by the governor's executive order;

(2) The department of land and natural resources may reclassify those areas needed for its purposes as conservation district lands, as defined in chapter 183C; provided it is designated as a limited subzone ensuring that agricultural activity is allowed to occur in those areas, pursuant to a conservation district use permit, as may be required; and

(3) The department of land and natural resources may create a conservation easement over those portions of the lands they have identified as having significant conservation, cultural, or recreational resource value, subject to a specific allowance for agricultural activities that may be revoked or modified upon notification of the implementation of a conservation project.

For all lands described in this subsection, the department shall have management authority over all agricultural activities and all land disposition and management matters pertaining to such use, and the department of land and natural resources shall have management authority over conservation, cultural, and recreational activities. Provided that the forgoing conditions have been met, and upon the written request from the chairperson of the board of land and natural resources to the chairperson of the board of agriculture, the department shall require termination or modification of agricultural uses and shall transfer management jurisdiction by re-designation of use, withdrawal, or re-set aside of those portions of the lands identified as having conservation, cultural, or recreational resource value, to the department of land and natural resources, division of forestry and wildlife.

(c) Any transfer to the department made pursuant to this section shall be subject to a use restriction that requires that any allowed agricultural use shall not unreasonably diminish, degrade, or destroy future potential use by the department of land and natural resources.

(d) For all lands the department of land and natural resources identifies pursuant to this section as having conservation, cultural, or recreational resource value that is necessary and appropriate for protection to facilitate the department of land and natural resources' mission objectives, the department of land and natural resources shall bear the responsibility and costs for identifying, mapping, designating or subdividing those areas.

(e) If at any time land transferred pursuant to this section is in productive agricultural use under the department's authority, and the department of land and natural resources seeks to alter or convert the existing use to its reserved uses or priorities, preference to the department of land and natural resources use shall be given; provided that as of the anticipated commencement of the proposed use:

(1) The department of land and natural resources has completed a plan of utilization or project plan for its intended use that is approved by the board of land and natural resources;

(2) The department of land and natural resources has secured sufficient funding to commence implementation of the plan;

(3) The department of land and natural resources shall be solely responsible for all costs for identification, mapping, designation, and subdivision of the land or any portions thereof that is required for implementation of its plan; and

(4) The department of land and natural resources has given prior written notice to the department and the occupant no later than one year prior to alteration or conversion. The occupant shall be responsible for costs of relocating its operations ordinarily associated with reconfiguring existing operations to accommodate the loss of areas removed for the department of land and natural resources use.

(f) Any dispute regarding management of the lands under this section shall be fully and finally resolved by the governor, as may be necessary."

PART II

SECTION 2. Section 166E-1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"[[]166E-1[]] Legislative findings. The legislature finds that article XI, section 10, of the state constitution establishes that "the public lands shall be used for the development of farm and homeownership on as widespread a basis as possible, in accordance with procedures and limitations prescribed by law". The legislature also finds that article XI, section 1, of the state constitution establishes that the State "shall conserve and protect Hawaii's natural beauty and all natural resources, including land, water, air, minerals and energy sources".

Therefore, the legislature finds that certain public lands classified for agricultural use by the department of land and natural resources should be transferred to the department of agriculture, with the approval of the board of land and natural resources and the board of agriculture, for purposes and in a manner consistent with article XI, section 10, of the state constitution. The legislature further finds that considerations such as watershed preservation, forest reserves, game management reserves, carbon sequestration, and other conservation, cultural, and recreational policy considerations should be considered when determining management oversight of public lands classified for agricultural.

The purpose of this chapter is to ensure the long-term productive use of public lands leased or available to be leased by the department of land and natural resources for agricultural purposes by allowing [these] those lands that have no significant conservation, cultural, or recreational resource value, to be transferred to and managed by the department of agriculture.

Additionally, the purpose of this chapter is to provide concurrent management by the department and the department of land and natural resources, division of forestry and wildlife, for public lands leased, or available to be leased, for agricultural use, which also have significant conservation, cultural, or recreational resource value."

SECTION 3. Section 166E-2, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending the definition of "agricultural activities" to read as follows:

""Agricultural activities" means the care and production of livestock, livestock products, poultry, or poultry products, or apiary, horticultural, or floricultural products, or the planting, cultivating, and harvesting of crops or trees. "Agricultural activities" includes pasture use."

SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

HDOA; DLNR; Non-agricultural Park Lands; Land Transfer; Land Management

 

Description:

Authorizes the transfer and co-management of certain agricultural lands between the department of agriculture and department of land and natural resources as identified in Act 90, Session Laws of Hawaii 2003.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.