STAND. COM. REP. NO. 523
RE: H.B. No. 549
Honorable Joseph M. Souki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Twenty-Eighth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2015
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Higher Education, to which was referred H.B. No. 549 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO PUBLIC SERVICE LEGAL LOAN REPAYMENT ASSISTANCE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose of this measure is to provide financial assistance to law school graduates who work in areas related to public service by establishing and funding a Public Service Legal Loan Repayment Assistance Program that will give student loan repayment assistance to licensed lawyers practicing in public service positions.
The Task Force established by Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 116 (2014), Student Bar Association at the William S. Richardson School of Law, and many concerned individuals supported this measure. The University of Hawaii and Department of Budget and Finance submitted comments.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Limiting the definition of eligible employment for purposes of Program eligibility to legal positions that provide direct legal assistance to indigent persons through a nonprofit organization; and
(2) Changing its effective date to July 1, 2525, to encourage further discussion.
Your Committee has technical concerns regarding this measure but believes that it merits further discussion and consideration. Your Committee hopes that as the measure continues through the process, these concerns can be addressed.
Should your Committee on Finance deliberate this measure further, your Committee respectfully requests that it consider appropriating $800,000 for the purposes of the Program.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Higher Education that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 549, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 549, H.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Finance.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Higher Education,
ISAAC W. CHOY, Chair