STAND. COM. REP. NO. 573-22

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2022

 

RE: H.B. No. 1717

H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2022

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Higher Education & Technology, to which was referred H.B. No. 1717 entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO AGRICULTURE,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to appropriate funds to the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, to work in collaboration with a University of Hawaii community college, to establish the foreign agriculture small equipment pilot program to:

 

(1) Identify and purchase foreign agricultural technology, including but not limited to small equipment tractors and retrofit engines that will benefit the State's farmers and ranchers and comply with the United States Environmental Protection Agency's emission standards;

 

(2) Establish contact with manufacturers of small equipment in Japan and other countries;

 

(3) Work with the United States Environmental Protection Agency to identify Environmental Protection Agency standards and compliance requirements for small foreign agricultural equipment;

 

(4) Collaborate with agricultural professionals from foreign countries on management practices;

 

(5) Bring harvesting, weed management, and field preparation machinery into the State for evaluation;

 

(6) Conduct on-farm trials to evaluate the efficacy and applicability to multiple growing systems, such as wetland conventional, organic, and forage crops, statewide; and

 

(7) Conduct education and training workshops statewide to update agriculture producers on available technology.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawaii Farm Bureau; Ulupono Initiative; Ponoholo Ranch Limited; Hawaii Cattlemen's Council, Inc.; Hawaii Crop Improvement Association; Hawaii Floriculture and Nursery Association; and three individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the University of Hawaii System, Department of Agriculture, and Department of Budget and Finance.

 

Your Committee finds that diversified agriculture in Hawaii could benefit from a small equipment pilot program that would be appropriate for the smaller sizes and unique terrain characteristics of many farms in the State.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.

 

Your Committee requests that if your Committee on Finance chooses to hear this measure, that the University of Hawaii System provide a recommended appropriation amount for your Committee on Finance to consider.

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Higher Education & Technology that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1717, as amended herein, and recommends that it be referred to your Committee on Finance in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1717, H.D. 1.

 

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Higher Education & Technology,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

GREGG TAKAYAMA, Chair