HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2018
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO HOMELESSNESS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that according to the 2017 Hawaii Statewide Homeless Point-in-Time Count, the number of homeless people on Oahu rose by nearly fourteen per cent since 2012. Despite increased efforts and resources to reduce homelessness in Hawaii, homelessness has remained a significant issue. Homeless individuals often rely on panhandling for income. Citations and jail time for panhandling can be disruptive and exacerbate homelessness. Further, it has often been difficult for service providers to connect with homeless individuals and identify the services they need, such as mental health or substance abuse treatment.
The legislature recognizes that pilot programs throughout the United States provide homeless individuals with temporary work while providing easy access to services. A pilot program launched in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2015 has received national attention. The program connects homeless individuals with work cleaning up public spaces and is proving to be a success. A similar program introduced in Tucson, Arizona assists homeless individuals with temporary jobs.
The legislature further finds that in Hawaii, some service providers assist homeless individuals with temporary work. However, those programs are limited to small areas and thus are not available to the vast majority of homeless individuals in communities throughout the State. The legislature also finds that since problems like graffiti and litter remain prevalent throughout Hawaii, the State could employ homeless individuals to help reduce those problems.
The purpose of this Act is to establish a pilot program that:
(1) Assists homeless individuals by connecting them to temporary job opportunities; and
(2) Connects homeless individuals with service providers.
SECTION 2. (a) There is established a three-year homeless employment grant program that shall be developed by the department of human services.
(b) The department of human services shall contract with a service provider or other qualified person or entity to administer the program; provided that the contract shall be exempt from chapter 103D, Hawaii Revised Statutes.
(c) The homeless employment grant program shall:
(1) Connect homeless individuals with work opportunities;
(2) Pay individuals in the program for the hours they worked in the day, which may include a limited amount of time spent with service providers; provided that the source of funding for the payments shall be the homeless employment grant program's funds;
(3) Connect homeless individuals with service providers at the appropriate time; and
(4) When appropriate, transport participants in the program to a shelter at the end of the work day.
(d) The homeless individuals who work pursuant to subsection (c) shall not be considered employees of the State solely as a result of their work in the pilot program.
(e) The State shall be immune from suit and liability for any claim for damage to or loss of property, personal injury, or other civil liability caused, arising out of, or relating to any actual or alleged act, error, or omission that occurred at any stage of the planning and administration of the homeless employment grant program.
SECTION 3. The department of human services shall submit a report that includes:
(1) The progress made toward implementing the homeless employment grant program;
(2) Any findings and recommendations; and
(3) Any necessary proposed legislation,
to the legislature no later than twenty days before the convening of the regular session of 2019.
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 purpose of establishing a three-year homeless employment grant program.
The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of human services for the purposes of this Act.
SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 3000; provided that section 2 shall take effect on July 1, 2020.
Homeless Employment Grant Program; Appropriation
Establishes a 3-year homeless employment grant program that provides homeless individuals with work opportunities and connects them with service providers to begin 7/1/2020. Requires the Department of Human Services to submit a report to the Legislature on the program. Appropriates funds. Effective 7/1/3000. (SD1)
The summary description
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not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.