STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1490
RE: H.B. No. 444
Honorable Donna Mercado Kim
President of the Senate
Twenty-Eighth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2015
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred H.B. No. 444, H.D. 3, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO BEACH PROTECTION,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to promote beach restoration and conservation.
More specifically, this measure:
(1) Allocates transient accommodations tax revenues to the special land and development fund and the beach restoration and conservation special fund to finance restoration and conservation activities;
(2) Enables the effective development and implementation of plans to slow the degradation of Hawaii's beaches; and
(3) Encourages the restoration of beaches through the coordination of activities involving the counties and the formation of public-private partnerships.
Your Committee received written comments in support of this measure from the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Hawaii Tourism Authority, Hawaii Shore and Beach Preservation Association, and The Nature Conservancy. Your Committee received written comments on this measure from the Department of Budget and Finance, State-County Functions Working Group, and Tax Foundation of Hawaii.
Your Committee finds that Hawaii's beaches are an important and valuable natural resource that are utilized by residents and tourists for recreational and cultural activities. Recent studies conducted by researchers at the University of Hawaii and the United States Geological Survey reveal that Hawaii's beaches have become increasingly threatened by erosion, with seventy percent of beaches undergoing chronic erosion and over thirteen miles of beaches having been completely lost over the past century. Your Committee believes that this measure addresses the need to develop more efficient methods of conserving and restoring the beaches of the State.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Deleting the requirement that transient accommodations tax revenues be allocated to the beach restoration and conservation special fund;
(2) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2050, to facilitate further discussion on the measure; and
(3) Making technical nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of consistency, clarity, and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 444, H.D. 3, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 444, H.D. 3, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,
JILL N. TOKUDA, Chair