HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.R. NO.

99

TWENTY-EIGHTH LEGISLATURE, 2015

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

HOUSE RESOLUTION

 

 

requesting the Legislative Reference Bureau to examine if and how other states regulate tour operators within their jurisdiction.

 

 

 


     WHEREAS, tourism, which accounted for twenty one percent of the state economy in 2013, is the largest single contributor to Hawaii's gross domestic product; and

 

     WHEREAS, it is in the best interest of the State to ensure the safety of all residents and visitors; and

 

     WHEREAS, Hawaii currently does not regulate the activities of tour and excursion groups soliciting residents or visitors; and

 

     WHEREAS, there has been a rise in tour activity in state parks despite the closure of Sacred Falls State Park in 1999 due to a rockslide and resulting deaths; and

 

     WHEREAS, in December 2014, two tour guides were charged for prohibited entry into closed areas within the Wao Kele O Puna Forest Reserve and the Kahaualea Natural Area Reserve and for engaging in illegal commercial activities on state-managed lands, including leading so-called "lava tours"; and

 

     WHEREAS, in February 2015, another tour guide was charged with trespassing, reckless endangering, and conducting illegal commercial activities in a natural area reserve for leading a "lava tour" group in the Kahaualea Natural Area Reserve in Pahoa-Puna; and

 

     WHEREAS, the Department of Land and Natural Resources imposes a fine of up to $5,000 for a first offense of entry into closed public lands; now, therefore,

 

     BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the Twenty-eighth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2015, that the Legislative Reference Bureau is requested to examine if and how other states regulate tour operators within their jurisdiction; and

 

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the examination include a review of the laws, policies, and procedures adopted by other states to regulate tour operators, if any; and

 

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislative Reference Bureau is requested to submit a report of its findings and recommendations, including any proposed legislation, to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2016; and

 

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a certified copy of this Resolution be transmitted to the Director of the Legislative Reference Bureau.

 

 

 

 

OFFERED BY:

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Report Title: 

Tour Operators; Regulation; LRB; Study