STAND. COM. REP. NO. 302
RE: S.B. No. 1486
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-Second State Legislature
Regular Session of 2023
State of Hawaii
Your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land, to which was referred S.B. No. 1486 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO MEAT PROCESSING,"
beg leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to require the Department of Agriculture, in collaboration with the Hawaii Interagency Council on Homelessness; Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife; and Department of Health, Food Safety Branch, in consultation with the County of Maui Axis Deer Task Force, to develop and implement a plan to expand the meat processing capacity in the State to allow for meat from axis deer and other wild game to be processed for distribution by nonprofit food distribution services.
Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Agriculture; one member of the Maui County Council; Maui County Farm Bureau; Hawai‘i Farm Bureau; McCandless Ranch; Ponoholo Ranch Limited; Albatross News Hilo; Hawaii Cattlemen's Council, Inc.; Aina Ho‘okupu o Kilauea; Hawai‘i Farmers Union United; Mulkern Landscaping and Nursery; and eight individuals.
Your Committees find that the rapid proliferation of axis deer populations on Maui and other islands has devastated crops and native vegetation, and threatens the health of delicate land ecosystems in the State. Your Committees further find that there is a public desire to utilize the axis deer to feed under-nourished and under-resourced communities in the State and that there is a need to expand Hawaii's meat processing capacity in order to accomplish this. Thus, this measure develops and appropriates funds for the expansion of the State's meat processing capacity, along with a donation program, to allow for meat sourced from axis deer or other wild game to be processed and donated for distribution by nonprofit food services to under-resourced communities.
Your Committees have amended this measure by inserting an effective date of July 1, 2050, to encourage further discussion.
As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1486, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1486, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land,
LORRAINE R. INOUYE, Chair
MIKE GABBARD, Chair