STAND. COM. REP. NO. 648

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: S.B. No. 436

S.D. 1

 

 

 

Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirty-Second State Legislature

Regular Session of 2023

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committees on Health and Human Services and Higher Education, to which was referred S.B. No. 436 entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO MENTAL HEALTH,"

 

beg leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose and intent of this measure is to appropriate funds to the University of Hawaii to support and expand the Mental Health Technician Certificate of Competence Program.

 

Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Judiciary, Department of Health, University of Hawaii System, University of Hawaii Professional Assembly, and four individuals.

 

Your Committees find that there is a severe shortage of mental health providers in the State. The University of Hawaii Windward Community College's Mental Health Technician Certificate of Competence Program helps mitigate this shortage by providing introductory training to prepare individuals to enter the mental health workforce. While the online format of the program allows for participation across the State, the program lacks the personnel and funds to render it fully accessible to all interested participants. To increase accessibility to the program, this measure appropriates funds to support and expand Windward Community College's Mental Health Technician Certificate of Competence Program, including for one full-time equivalent (1.0 FTE) Mental Health Technician Certificate of Competence Program Coordinator, a scholarship program, and the defrayal of administrative costs.

 

Your Committees have amended this measure by:

 

(1) Inserting a blank appropriation amount; and

 

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

 

Should your Committee on Ways and Means choose to deliberate on this measure, your Committees respectfully request that it consider inserting an appropriation amount of $137,250, to be expended as follows:

 

(1) $75,000 to establish a Mental Health Technician Certificate of Competence Program Coordinator position;

 

(2) $50,000 to establish a scholarship program; and

 

(3) $12,250 for other necessary administrative costs.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Health and Human Services and Higher Education that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 436, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 436, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Health and Human Services and Higher Education,

 

________________________________

DONNA MERCADO KIM, Chair

 

________________________________

JOY A. SAN BUENAVENTURA, Chair