STAND. COM. REP. NO. 207
RE: S.B. No. 964
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Twenty-Ninth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2017
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Human Services, to which was referred S.B. No. 964 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO HOMELESS SHELTERS,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to:
(1) Establish that emergency shelters may provide partitioned space for homeless persons or families based upon guidelines determined by the Department of Human Services; and
(2) Extend the effective date of Act 234, Session Laws of Hawaii 2016, by one year to provide additional time for the Department of Human Services to implement the Act.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Governor's Coordinator on Homelessness, Department of Human Services, Democratic Party of Hawai‘i, and two individuals.
Your Committee finds that homelessness continues to be one of the State's most significant and challenging social problems. In an attempt to make the homeless shelter system more cost effective and more appealing to families and individuals, the Legislature enacted Act 234, Session Laws of Hawaii 2016, to establish minimum requirements for every homeless emergency shelter operated by a provider agency that is under contract with the Department of Human Services. However, there is wide variation in the configuration of homeless emergency shelters across the State. Because homeless emergency shelters need sufficient flexibility to address the diverse needs of homeless individuals and families across the State, it is critical that the Department of Human Services allows enough time for homeless emergency shelters to bring shelter space into compliance with the Department's requirements.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Inserting an effective date of June 30, 2017; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Human Services that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 964, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 964, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Human Services,
JOSH GREEN, Chair