HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1270

TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2017

H.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

S.D. 2

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO LAND ACQUISITION.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


PART I

SECTION 1. The legislature finds that the state constitution mandates the State to conserve and protect agricultural lands, promote diversified agriculture, increase agricultural self-sufficiency, and assure the availability of agriculturally suitable lands. The legislature notes that the state office of planning, in conjunction with the department of agriculture, recently prepared a report that advised the State to improve agricultural infrastructure, including parks, irrigation systems, and distribution systems and facilities, as part of a strategy to increase food security and food self-sufficiency.

The legislature further finds that the property on the island of Hawaii identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii, has recently been placed for sale. This property is about ten acres, zoned for agricultural use, contains seven buildings each equipped with irrigation and misting systems, and is currently used to grow plants. The legislature notes that the property's size, type, and preexisting infrastructure make the property suitable for acquisition by the State so that the State can fulfill its constitutional obligations regarding agricultural lands.

The purpose of this part is to:

(1) Direct the board of land and natural resources to enter into negotiations to acquire the property identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii;

(2) Authorize the director of finance to issue general obligation bonds for the purchase of the property; and

(3) Appropriate funds for the board of land and natural resources to engage in negotiations and conduct due diligence of the property.

SECTION 2. The board of land and natural resources shall enter into negotiations to acquire the property identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii; provided that the purchase price shall not exceed the appraised value of the property as appraised by the department of land and natural resources.

SECTION 3. The director of finance is authorized to issue general obligation bonds in the sum of $ or so much thereof as may be necessary and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary is appropriated for fiscal year 2018-2019 for the purchase of the property identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii, from Hanano Nursery, Inc.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of land and natural resources for the purposes of this part.

SECTION 4. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $ or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2018-2019 for the board of land and natural resources to:

(1) Engage in negotiations to purchase the property identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii, from Hanano Nursery, Inc.; and

(2) Conduct due diligence of the property, which may include an environmental assessment of any potential release or presence of hazardous materials on the property and an environmental sampling and analysis plan.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of land and natural resources for the purposes of this part.

SECTION 5. The appropriation made in section 3 of this part for the purchase of property authorized by this part shall not lapse at the end of the fiscal biennium for which the appropriation is made; provided that all moneys from the appropriation unencumbered as of June 30, 2020, shall lapse as of that date.

PART II

SECTION 6. The legislature finds that the State is obligated to meet its mandate to conserve agricultural land pursuant to article XI, section 3, of the Hawaii State Constitution, which requires the State to conserve and protect agricultural lands, promote diversified agriculture, increase agricultural self-sufficiency, and assure the availability of agriculturally suitable lands. The legislature further finds that the State must take a more active role in providing assistance to promote farming as a business.

The legislature further finds that over the past four decades, there has been a steady decline of agricultural plantations in Hawaii. A report issued by the department of agriculture, entitled "Statewide Agricultural Land Use Baseline 2015" (report), shows a dramatic change in agricultural land over the last thirty-five years as sugar and pineapple production have downsized. According to the report, in 2015, Hawaii had approximately 151,830 acres of agricultural land in active crop production and 761,430 acres in pasture use, compared to approximately 350,830 acres in cropland and 1,100,000 acres in pasture use in 1980.

The legislature further finds that large tracts of agricultural land identified by the office of planning are now fallow, including those formerly used for pineapple and sugar cane. These lands provide a unique opportunity for the State to fulfill the intent of the constitutional mandate regarding diversified agriculture and agricultural self-sufficiency through acquisition of suitable agricultural land for long-term leases for diversified and bona fide agricultural operations that increase agricultural production.

A separate report by the office of planning, in cooperation with the department of agriculture, entitled "Increased Food Security and Food Self-Sufficiency Strategy", recommends that the State acquire and manage agricultural lands to strengthen the local food system.

The legislature further finds that attempts to stimulate diversified agriculture in the private sector through regulatory controls and land use and zoning restrictions are not sufficient to address the business needs necessary to effectively and significantly increase diversified agriculture and avert Hawaii's agricultural self-sufficiency crisis. Furthermore, programs to preserve the remaining agricultural lands, such as important agricultural lands, do not prevent subdivision or condominium property regimes.

The legislature further finds that the governor has committed to double Hawaii's food production by 2020. To accomplish that objective, the governor aims to make more land available for agriculture as a priority.

The purpose of this part is to:

(1) Establish the agricultural land acquisition fund for the acquisition, administration, maintenance, and management of agricultural lands and irrigation systems to improve food security; and

(2) Make appropriations into and out of the agricultural land acquisition fund.

SECTION 7. Chapter 163D, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to part I to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"163D-    Agricultural land acquisition fund. (a) There is established within the state treasury the agricultural land acquisition fund to be administered by the corporation and into which shall be deposited:

(1) Legislative appropriations;

(2) Environmental response, energy, and food security tax revenues pursuant to section 243-3.5; and

(3) Other sources, including gifts, donations, and grants from public agencies and private persons or entities.

(b) Moneys in the agricultural land acquisition fund shall be expended for the acquisition, administration, maintenance, and management of agricultural lands and irrigation systems to improve food security."

SECTION 8. Section 243-3.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsections (a) and (b) to read as follows:

"(a) In addition to any other taxes provided by law, subject to the exemptions set forth in section 243-7, there is hereby imposed a state environmental response, energy, and food security tax on each barrel or fractional part of a barrel of petroleum product sold by a distributor to any retail dealer or end user of petroleum product, other than a refiner. The tax shall be $1.05 on each barrel or fractional part of a barrel of petroleum product that is not aviation fuel; provided that of the tax collected pursuant to this subsection:

(1) 5 cents of the tax on each barrel shall be deposited into the environmental response revolving fund established under section 128D-2;

(2) 15 cents of the tax on each barrel shall be deposited into the energy security special fund established under section 201-12.8;

(3) 10 cents of the tax on each barrel shall be deposited into the energy systems development special fund established under section 304A-2169.1; [and]

(4) 15 cents of the tax on each barrel shall be deposited into the agricultural development and food security special fund established under section 141-10[.]; and

(5)       cents of the tax on each barrel shall be deposited into the agricultural land acquisition fund established under section 163D-   .

The tax imposed by this subsection shall be paid by the distributor of the petroleum product.

(b) In addition to subsection (a), the tax shall also be imposed on each one million British thermal units of fossil fuel sold by a distributor to any retail dealer or end user, other than a refiner, of fossil fuel. The tax shall be 19 cents on each one million British thermal units of fossil fuel; provided that of the tax collected pursuant to this subsection:

(1) 4.8 per cent of the tax on each one million British thermal units shall be deposited into the environmental response revolving fund established under section 128D-2;

(2) 14.3 per cent of the tax on each one million British thermal units shall be deposited into the energy security special fund established under section 201‑12.8;

(3) 9.5 per cent of the tax on each one million British thermal units shall be deposited into the energy systems development special fund established under section 304A-2169.1; [and]

(4) 14.3 per cent of the tax on each one million British thermal units shall be deposited into the agricultural development and food security special fund established under section 141-10[.]; and

(5)       per cent of the tax on each one million British thermal units shall be deposited into the agricultural land acquisition fund established under section 163D‑   .

The tax imposed by this subsection shall be paid by the distributor of the fossil fuel."

SECTION 9. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $           or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2018-2019 for deposit into the agricultural land acquisition fund established under section 163D-   , Hawaii Revised Statutes.

SECTION 10. There is appropriated out of the agricultural land acquisition fund the sum of $           or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2018-2019 for the acquisition, administration, maintenance, and management of agricultural lands and irrigation systems to improve food security.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the agribusiness development corporation for the purposes of this part.

PART III

SECTION 11. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 12. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.


 


 

Report Title:

Agricultural Land; Acquisition; BLNR; Appropriation; Food Security

 

Description:

Directs the Board of Land and Natural Resources to enter into negotiations to acquire the property identified as Tax Map Key: (3) 6-8-001:030 Kamuela, Hawaii. Authorizes the director of finance to issue general obligation bonds for the purchase of the property. Appropriates funds for the Board of Land and Natural Resources to engage in negotiations and conduct due diligence of the property. Establishes and appropriates funds out of the agricultural land acquisition fund to provide funding for the acquisition, administration, maintenance, and management of agricultural lands and irrigation systems to improve food security. Specifies sources of deposits into the fund. Effective 7/1/2050. (SD2)

 

 

 

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