STAND. COM. REP. NO. 656-22

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2022

 

RE: H.B. No. 1954

H.D. 2

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2022

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Water & Land, to which was referred H.B. No. 1954, H.D. 1, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT MAKING AN EMERGENCY APPROPRIATION TO FUND A GRANT TO THE BOARD OF WATER SUPPLY FOR EMERGENCY OPERATIONS, FUTURE PLANNING, AND GROUND WATER REMEDIATION,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to:

 

(1) Make an emergency appropriation as a grant to the Honolulu Board of Water Supply for emergency operations, future planning, and remediation resulting from the contamination of the Southern Oahu Basal Aquifer; and

 

(2) Require the Honolulu Board of Water Supply to submit reports to the Legislature on the expenditure of the funds, remediation efforts, and testing quality before the convening of the Regular Sessions of 2023, 2024, and 2025.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Honolulu Board of Water Supply, one member of the Hawaii County Council, Environmental Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, 350Hawaii.org, Our Revolution Hawaii, and three individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Health, Department of Budget and Finance, and Department of Land and Natural Resources.

 

Your Committee finds that the 2021 fuel leak at the United States Navy's Red Hill fuel storage facility on Oahu and subsequent groundwater contamination is an ongoing environmental and health crisis. Despite the Navy's agreement to drain the fuel storage tanks, the immediate threat of groundwater and aquifer contamination remains. Your Committee further finds that this measure is vitally important to the health, safety, and well-being of the people of Oahu.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

(1) Changing the means of funding from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund established pursuant to section 342L-51, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to the general revenues of the State of Hawaii;

 

(2) Not requiring the Department of Health to seek reimbursement from the United States Navy;

 

(3) Changing the assistance to a grant-in-aid to the City and County of Honolulu Board of Water Supply, to be expended by the City and County of Honolulu rather than the Department of Health; and

 

(4) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Water & Land that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1954, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it be referred to your Committee on Finance in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1954, H.D. 2.

 

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Water & Land,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

DAVID A. TARNAS, Chair