THIRTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2021
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
relating to housing.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. Chapter 201H, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:
"§201H- High-density housing development project approval process; discretionary permit. (a) State and county agencies shall issue a discretionary permit associated with any high-density housing development project within sixty days from the date of receipt of a permit application that is deemed to be complete by the receiving state or county agency.
(b) A developer of a project described in this section may submit an application for a discretionary permit for a high-density housing development project and shall not be required to obtain a conditional use permit if the development project satisfies all of the following planning standards:
(1) The housing development project is a high-density project;
(2) The development project is located within a county-designated transit-oriented development zone;
(3) The dwelling units in the development project are priced to be affordable for households having incomes at or below one hundred per cent of the area median income as determined by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development;
(4) The development project will not demolish or substantially affect the characteristics of any building structure, site, or object that meets the criteria for listing on the Hawaii register of historic places;
(5) The sales of dwelling units do not include requirements or limitations related to an individual's income; provided that the dwelling units are sold to persons who:
(A) Are residents of the State;
(B) Will be owner-occupants of the dwelling unit being sold; and
(C) Do not own any other real property, residential or non-residential; and
(6) The state or county permitting agency may review the proposed development project for compliance with codes and ordinances and for consistency with surrounding projects; provided that the state or county permitting agency shall be prohibited from imposing any non-code related condition or exaction on projects processed pursuant to this section.
(c) If the state or county permitting agency determines that an application submitted pursuant to this section is in conflict with any of the planning standards specified in subsection (b), it shall provide the developer of the project described in this section with written documentation of any standard in conflict with the development and an explanation for any reason the development conflicts with that standard within thirty days of submittal of the application. If the state or county permitting agency fails to provide the required documentation pursuant to this subsection, the development shall be deemed to satisfy the planning standards specified in subsection (b).
(d) For the purposes of this section, "high-density" means accommodating at least two hundred fifty dwelling units per acre."
SECTION 2. Section 46-15.1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§46-15.1 Housing; county powers. (a) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, any county shall have and may exercise the same powers, subject to applicable limitations, as those granted the Hawaii housing finance and development corporation pursuant to chapter 201H insofar as those powers may be reasonably construed to be exercisable by a county for the purpose of developing, constructing, and providing low- and moderate-income housing; provided that no county shall be empowered to cause the State to issue general obligation bonds to finance a project pursuant to this section; provided further that county projects shall be granted an exemption from general excise or receipts taxes in the same manner as projects of the Hawaii housing finance and development corporation pursuant to section 201H-36; and provided further that section 201H-16 shall not apply to this section unless federal guidelines specifically provide local governments with that authorization and the authorization does not conflict with any state laws. The powers shall include the power, subject to applicable limitations, to:
(1) Develop and construct dwelling units, alone or in partnership with developers;
(2) Acquire necessary land by lease, purchase, exchange, or eminent domain;
(3) Provide assistance and aid to a public agency or other person in developing and constructing new housing and rehabilitating existing housing for elders of low- and moderate-income, other persons of low- and moderate-income, and persons displaced by any governmental action, by making long-term mortgage or interim construction loans available;
(4) Contract with any eligible bidders to provide for construction of urgently needed housing for persons of low- and moderate-income;
(5) Guarantee the top twenty-five per cent of the principal balance of real property mortgage loans, plus interest thereon, made to qualified borrowers by qualified lenders;
(6) Enter into mortgage guarantee agreements with appropriate officials of any agency or instrumentality of the United States to induce those officials to commit to insure or to insure mortgages under the National Housing Act, as amended;
(7) Make a direct loan to any qualified buyer for the downpayment required by a private lender to be made by the borrower as a condition of obtaining a loan from the private lender in the purchase of residential property;
(8) Provide funds for a share, not to exceed fifty per cent, of the principal amount of a loan made to a qualified borrower by a private lender who is unable otherwise to lend the borrower sufficient funds at reasonable rates in the purchase of residential property; and
(9) Sell or lease completed dwelling units.
For purposes of this section, a limitation is applicable to the extent that it may reasonably be construed to apply to a county.
(b) Each county shall issue every discretionary permit associated with any high-density housing project described in section 201H- within sixty days from the date of receipt of a permit application that is deemed to be complete by the receiving county agency.
(b)] (c) Each county shall recognize housing units
developed by the department of Hawaiian home lands and issue affordable housing
credits to the department of Hawaiian home lands. The credits shall be transferable and shall
be issued on a one-credit for one-unit basis, unless the housing unit is
eligible for additional credits as provided by adopted county ordinances,
rules, or any memoranda of agreement between a county and the department of
Hawaiian home lands. In the event that
credits are transferred by the department of Hawaiian home lands, twenty-five
per cent of any monetary proceeds from the transfer shall be used by the
department of Hawaiian home lands to develop units for rental properties. Credits shall be issued for each
single-family residence, multi-family unit, other residential unit, whether for
purposes of sale or rental, or if allowed under the county's affordable housing
programs, vacant lot, developed by the department of Hawaiian home lands. The credits may be applied county-wide within
the same county in which the credits were earned to satisfy affordable housing obligations
imposed by the county on market-priced residential and non-residential
developments. County-wide or
project-specific requirements for housing class, use, or type; or construction
time for affordable housing units shall not impair, restrict, or condition the
county's obligation to apply the credits in full satisfaction of all county
requirements, whether by rule, ordinance, or particular zoning conditions of a
project. Notwithstanding any provisions
herein to the contrary, the department may enter into a memorandum of agreement
with the county of Kauai to establish, modify, or clarify the conditions for
the issuance, transfer, and redemption of the affordable housing credits in
accordance with county affordable housing ordinances or rules. Notwithstanding any provisions herein to the
contrary, the department may enter into a memorandum of agreement with the city
and county of Honolulu to establish, modify, or clarify the conditions for the
issuance, transfer, and redemption of the affordable housing credits in
accordance with county affordable housing ordinances or rules. At least half of the affordable housing
credits issued by the city and county of Honolulu shall be subject to a
memorandum of agreement pursuant to this subsection.
For purposes of this section,
"affordable housing obligation" means the requirement imposed by a
county, regardless of the date of its imposition, to develop vacant lots,
single-family residences, multi-family residences, or any other type of residence
for sale or rent to individuals within a specified income range. (c)] (d) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, any
(1) Authorize and issue bonds under chapter 47 and chapter 49 to provide moneys to carry out the purposes of this section or section 46-15.2, including the satisfaction of any guarantees made by the county pursuant to this section;
(2) Appropriate moneys of the county to carry out the purposes of this section;
(3) Obtain insurance and guarantees from the State or the United States, or grants from either;
(4) Designate, after holding a public hearing on the matter and with the approval of the respective council, any lands owned by it for the purposes of this section;
(5) Provide interim construction loans to partnerships of which it is a partner and to developers whose projects qualify for federally assisted project mortgage insurance, or other similar programs of federal assistance for persons of low and moderate income; and
(6) Adopt rules pursuant to chapter 91 as are necessary to carry out the purposes of this section.
(d)] (e) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, a county
may waive its right to repurchase a privately-developed affordable housing unit
built pursuant to a unilateral agreement or similar instrument, and may transfer
that right of repurchase to a qualified nonprofit housing trust for the purpose
of maintaining the unit as affordable for as long as required by the county
For the purposes of this subsection,
"qualified nonprofit housing trust" means a corporation, association,
or other duly chartered organization that is registered and in good standing
with the State; that is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a
charitable or otherwise tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the
Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; and that has the capacity, resources,
and mission to carry out the purposes of this section as determined by the
county in which the housing unit is located. (e)] (f) A qualified nonprofit housing trust shall report
the status and use of its housing units to its respective county by November 30
of each calendar year.
(f)] (g) The provisions of this section shall be
construed liberally so as to effectuate the purpose of this section in
facilitating the development, construction, and provision of low- and
moderate-income housing by the various counties.
(g)] (h) For purposes of this section[ , "low]:
"Affordable housing obligation" means the requirement imposed by a county, regardless of the date of its imposition, to develop vacant lots, single-family residences, multi-family residences, or any other type of residence for sale or rent to individuals within a specified income range.
"Low- and [
income] moderate-income housing" means any housing project that
meets the definition of "low- and moderate-income housing project" in
"Qualified nonprofit housing trust" means a corporation, association, or other duly chartered organization that is registered and in good standing with the State; that is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a charitable or otherwise tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; and that has the capacity, resources, and mission to carry out the purposes of this section as determined by the county in which the housing unit is located."
SECTION 3. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2021; provided that the amendments made to section 46-15.1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, by section 2 of this Act shall not be repealed when that section is reenacted on July 1, 2024, pursuant to section 3 of Act 141, Session Laws of Hawaii 2009, as amended by section 3 of Act 102, Session Laws of Hawaii 2015, and section 1 of Act 80, Session Laws of Hawaii 2019.
Discretionary Permit; High-density Housing; Transit-oriented Development; Affordable Housing Development
Requires state or county agencies to issue discretionary permits for housing development projects that meet certain requirements within sixty days of receipt of a permit application deemed to be complete by the receiving state or county agency.
The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.