COM. REP. NO. 1062
RE: S.B. No. 550
Honorable Scott K. Saiki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Government Reform, to which was referred S.B. No. 550, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO VOTING,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose of this measure is to allow an individual who is seventeen years of age but will be eighteen years of age on or before the next state or local general election to register and vote at the state or local primary election immediately preceding that state or local general election and at any co-occurring or intervening special election.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from Young Progressives Demanding Action, Ke One O Kāhuhihewa, Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs, and one individual. Your Committee received comments on this measure from Common Cause Hawaii and Vote16HI.
Your Committee finds that the age qualification to vote in any federal, state, or local election is eighteen years of age. However, for those individuals whose eighteenth birthday falls between a primary and general elections, the current age restriction effectively prevents them from participating in state and local primary elections. Your Committee believes that granting voting rights to these individuals to participate in the primary elections and any intervening or co-occurring special election immediately preceding the general election, young individuals will have an increased sense of civic participation, which will lead to a greater understanding of, and increased participation in, the democratic process.
Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2112, to
encourage further discussion; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for
the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.
Should your Committee on Judiciary & Hawaiian Affairs hear this measure, your Committee respectfully requests that it consider allowing an individual who is sixteen years of age but will be eighteen years of age on or before the next state or local general election to register and vote at the primary election and any intervening or co-occurring special election before the general election.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Government Reform that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 550, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 550, S.D. 1, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Judiciary & Hawaiian Affairs.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Government Reform,
ANGUS L.K. McKELVEY, Chair