STAND. COM. REP. NO. 874
RE: S.B. No. 337
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred S.B. No. 337, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to enhance the productivity and sustainability of Hawaii's agricultural lands.
More specifically, this measure:
(1) Requires the Department of Agriculture to establish a three-year cover crop reimbursement pilot program for the acquisition of cover crop seeds, green manure, and compost;
(2) Establishes a cover crop reimbursement pilot program manager position within the Department of Agriculture; and
(3) Requires the Department of Agriculture to submit interim and final reports to the Legislature.
Your Committee received written comments in support of this measure from the Hawaii Department of Agriculture, University of Hawaii, Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action, Kauai Climate Action Coalition, Ka Ohana O Na Pua, Kauai Food Hub, Our Revolution HawaiiAlo, Hawaii SEED, Climate Protectors Hawaii, Hawaii Farm Bureau, Aina Momona, Environmental Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, Supersistence, and numerous individuals.
Your Committee finds that the pilot program established by this measure will offer incentives for farming operations in the State to use management practices that enhance the quality and sustainability of agricultural lands.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Adding compost as an item eligible for reimbursement under the pilot program and adding definitions of "compost", "compostable materials", and "composting process";
(2) Deleting the specific amounts appropriated or monetary caps specified and leaving them unspecified;
(3) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2050, to facilitate further discussion on the measure; and
(4) Making technical nonsubstantive amendments for purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 337, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 337, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,
DONOVAN M. DELA CRUZ, Chair